Sunday, December 11, 2005

Update - Yes Finally ;-)

OK I broke my typing finger that is why the site has not been updated in forever... hmm not buying into that one are you? Could make all the excuses under the sun, but in all truth just have not had much time to focus on it.

Here we are a matter of weeks away from the most important day of the year.... (my Birthday, naw just kidding but what a coincidence), yet another year that has flown by, as each one seems to do in quickening succession. It has been a fantastic year for us here in Victoria. We have a had a parade of great people coming from all over to spend some time with us. We have got a lot of projects on the way or completed around the Castle. Winter projects are ongoing and include the installation of a wood stove as our primary heat source, we presently use a combination of fireplace and portable oil heater. The house has several old style baseboard heater which provide a shocking increase in our electric bill with very little heat to show for it.

We brought in a Chimney sweep, (was disappointed that the service provided did not include a musical rendition of  Chim-Chim-Cher-ee  been a while since I have seen Dick Van Dyke doing that). to both clean and inspect chimney, as the inspection part is one of the primary steps before installing a wood stove. Thankfully the Chimney passed, saving a large expense. Next step is to speak with the Father-in-law, a mason and house builder in Northern BC. He just installed a couple of stoves, and since he has all the experience and knowledge it would be crazy not to check with him about it.

Another project that we are getting help with is our electrical and wiring configuration in the house. Presently we seem to be able to blow a breaker in the Living room and Kitchen area, see above note about baseboard heaters, we also have a real shortage of plugs in the common rooms. One of my co-workers learned of my plans to perform the upgrades, and offered up her Hubby's services. He is a trained and qualified electrician, from England. It was really nice of them to offer to assist us, asking for nothing, (but you know how that sits with me ;-) ), so he is going to bring over his tools and we will need to start by mapping the wiring/breakers out first, I am hoping that the elimination of the baseboard heaters will allow us to add several plugs, there are also a couple of spares on the panel as well that we should be able to take advantage of. With the coming spring project for a new deck and Sunroom it would be nice to dedicate a complete circuit to this area. They seem like a real nice couple, A was very taken by them and is hoping that we can get out and do some things with them.

Speaking of meeting new people, I recently put an ad in Kijiji, (eBay's new free localized classified service) for a chin fairing for my FJ1200. A guy,
MonkeysWrench locally passed his contact information to me. So gave him a call and we met up, he is the owner of both a '86 and 92 FJ. While the fairing he had was not what I was after, we went for a ride to Mill Bay for coffee, turns out we have a fair amount in common.He and his other half ride with group called the Southern Cruisers local 443 I went out with the group a couple of Sunday's ago for a ride from Langford (Sort of Victoria's Surrey) to Sidney for coffee. Riding with a group, or even with another is very different than my normal solo riding. Lots more to pay attention to and be responsible for. MonkeysWrench sent me this fantastic and logical guide to riding in a group you can view it here. Thing is I think a  lot of riders forget how much more demanding it is to ride with others, and how much more precise you have to be with all your actions for the safety of both yourself and for those around you. He also gave me a few other ideas, while riding back from Mill Bay I took the lead, it was a sloppy night to be riding, not that it has ever stopped me before, but having him follow was something else. He has mounted these two driving lights on the lower points on his bike, basically it was like being pursued by a freight train, his lights were lighting the road in front of me much better than my own single lamp.He also mounted some small LED lights on top of each the swingarm's ends, they are small non blinding ;-),  but what a difference they make to increase your visibility to others from behind. I am going to have to pick some up from Quayle's and play around with them a bit, perhaps side mounting a couple or underframe. Yes you guessed it, I have bought a set of Pilot 37000, white beam lights, these also have a blue LED function that can be toggled on or off as need be for fog riding. I spent yesterday replacing my wimpy horn with a highway low tone unit. I also got rid of the old grips and swapped to a set of red/black Sport grips from ProGrip. Yes December in Canada and still riding, the third winter in a row and still riding,  gotta love Victoria.

Well more to say but it will have to wait a couple of days...


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