author
361Instructables16,334,548Views5,234CommentsKnoxville, TennesseeJoined July 17th, 2008
I miss the days when magazines like Popular Mechanics had all sorts of DIY projects for making and repairing just about everything. I am enjoying posting things I have learned and done since I got my first tools. I enjoy studying the Bible and retired after 40 years as a Lutheran pastor. I like to dabble with some electronics projects. I have a wood lathe and a metal lathe, a radial arm saw, a router, and both a 220 volt stick welder and a gas shielded wire feed welder. I appreciate In... Read More »

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Make It Move Contest 2017
Contest Winner Runner Up in the Make It Move Contest 2017
Fix & Repair Contest
Contest Winner Runner Up in the Fix & Repair Contest
MacGyver Challenge
Contest Winner Runner Up in the MacGyver Challenge
Metal Contest 2016
Contest Winner First Prize in the Metal Contest 2016
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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Crazy Good Sleep13 hours ago
    Crazy Good Sleep

    I have read Clint Ober’s book, “Earthing.” An anti-static strap for working on computers has a 1M resistor in-line. The book says do not use an anti-static strap because the resistance is too high to allow electron flow from the earth to your body. If you are worried about some some adverse electrical event, the book advised an in-line 2 milliamp fuse. If you read carefully what I wrote about inflammation and positively charged free radicals, it makes very good sense. You will sleep better, although you may also be awake during the night, if you have been exoeriencing that.

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  • Kathryn,Thank you so much for your comment. I am glad you have been able to keep your various ski machines working well over the years, in part, by floating metallic dust out of the one-way needle bearings in the rollers. It is amazing what some basic mechanical knowledge coupled with a little intuition and intelligent guessing can accomplish. The thanks goes to the folks at Instructables for keeping things like this available. Of course, they are involved in a commercial endeavor and need people to submit things others will want to view so the site owners can entice advertising dollars. What you found here is part of Community topics and discussions. Most of the things I post are in the section where you can view steps with photos or video showing how the author did or accomplished som...

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    Kathryn,Thank you so much for your comment. I am glad you have been able to keep your various ski machines working well over the years, in part, by floating metallic dust out of the one-way needle bearings in the rollers. It is amazing what some basic mechanical knowledge coupled with a little intuition and intelligent guessing can accomplish. The thanks goes to the folks at Instructables for keeping things like this available. Of course, they are involved in a commercial endeavor and need people to submit things others will want to view so the site owners can entice advertising dollars. What you found here is part of Community topics and discussions. Most of the things I post are in the section where you can view steps with photos or video showing how the author did or accomplished something. The subject areas are quite varied. Many of my submissions involve building or fixing something useful inexpensively. There is always the challenge of showing how to do a repair without the need for expensive tools the average person will not have.

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  • Fix a Cruise Control Switch--Olds Alero (and Others)

    Thank you for the report. I am glad it worked for you and saved you a bunch of money, no doubt.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue7 days ago
    Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue

    Thank you for looking. I am glad you may be able to use this. I do like the side slide switch, but a faster fix would have been to mount a small twist switch near where the piwer cord comes into the tool.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Make a Garmin Vehicle Power Cable Work Again15 days ago
    Make a Garmin Vehicle Power Cable Work Again

    If you need traffic updates, there is the app. WAZE for a smart phone. Users report traffic problems in real time and WAZE reroutes you, if necessary. Of course, that does not help your Nuvi funtion better.

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  • Radial Arm Saw Table Alignment -- an Easier Way

    EBay does have some. They call them table clamps. https://www.ebay.com/itm/CRAFTSMAN-RADIAL-ARM-SAW-PARTS-2-TABLE-TOP-CLAMPS-113-xxx/143192754897?hash=item2156f40ad1:g:hdUAAOSwGEJcnnDu

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  • Radial Arm Saw Table Alignment -- an Easier Way

    I would have to open the manual for my saw to gove you the name. I digitized it some time ago. You might find them at eBay. Or, I did an Instructable on using wooden wedges. Those worked wuite well. https://www.instructables.com/id/Sears-Radial-Arm-Saw-Homemade-Table-Clamp/

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Rebuilding a Hydraulic Floor Jack17 days ago
    Rebuilding a Hydraulic Floor Jack

    It is your choice. But, I worked carefully and found my jack completely safe when finished. As with any jack the user wants a failsafe of sturdy blocks in case even a new jack fails or leaks down in use so the user is not pinned under a vehicle.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Make a Garmin Vehicle Power Cable Work Again17 days ago
    Make a Garmin Vehicle Power Cable Work Again

    You are probably correct about the green light. My guess is the cable has flexed enough over the years that a wire inside has frayed and broken. That usually happens near one of the ends, either where the cable comes out of the power converter or near the plug that attaches to the GPS. Sometimes you can plug the power converter into a cigarette lighter on the car and flex the cable to see if the GPS will come on intermittently. If it does, cut out about two in hes of the cable and solder the new end back in place. Or, you might be sble to find another power converter with the same end to fit the GPS to use.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Crazy Good Sleep27 days ago
    Crazy Good Sleep

    Thank you for looking at this. Today I talked to a man probably about 80. I had made a wire for his daughter (chrinic back pain from a fall 20 years ago) and he finally decided to try it before giving it to her in another state. He was surprised to discover he did not need to get up during the night either night to use the bathroom. But, it is different for different people. I did not experience that until after three weeks. I mentioned Clint Ober. His first try with this was with a strip of metallic duck tape stuck the length of his bed on the sheet. He ran a wire out of the window and pushed a rod into the ground. He slept very well without his usual Advil for falling asleep and his back pain was better in the morning. I gave a wire to my son and his back pain was better after the fir...

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    Thank you for looking at this. Today I talked to a man probably about 80. I had made a wire for his daughter (chrinic back pain from a fall 20 years ago) and he finally decided to try it before giving it to her in another state. He was surprised to discover he did not need to get up during the night either night to use the bathroom. But, it is different for different people. I did not experience that until after three weeks. I mentioned Clint Ober. His first try with this was with a strip of metallic duck tape stuck the length of his bed on the sheet. He ran a wire out of the window and pushed a rod into the ground. He slept very well without his usual Advil for falling asleep and his back pain was better in the morning. I gave a wire to my son and his back pain was better after the first night. I am not an electronics engineer, but did some thinking about electron current flow (- to +) rather than conventional current flow (+ to -) in a diode and decided I want the silver band on the wall outlet side of the diode rather than on the side of my body. That appears to be the proper decision.Thank you for commenting. Please let me know what happens. Some results you experience may not appear for a few weeks or a few months. Others may appear right away. Deeper sleep with a greater feeling of being rested in the morning is very common. It is good to hear from you again.

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  • Phil B's instructable Crazy Good Sleep's weekly stats: 4 weeks ago
    • Crazy Good Sleep
      140 views
      0 favorites
      2 comments
  • Your post is identical to one below from a couple of weeks before yours. Are you two the same person?

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  • Phil B commented on seamster's instructable How to Make a Custom Sewing Machine Case4 weeks ago
    How to Make a Custom Sewing Machine Case

    Very nice work. Things I do never look quite so neat. A few months ago I worked on a similar machine fot someone, but much newer, probably from the early 2000s. I think it was a Pfaff. The motor did not run at all. The shop the owner she trusts was steering her to a new machine for $700 and telling her how expensive it would be to install a new motor. I looked at the old motor and held some very fine sandpaper against the darkened copper commutator sections while I turned the armature by hand. It took a while, but as soon as the commutator was clean and bright the machine ran like new. This could easily be a problem on a machine from the 1930s or 1940s, too.

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  • Bicycle Torque Wrench From a Fisherman's Scale

    Merv,Thank you for the comment and for the video. I like your video. Your video mentioned paying attention in school. I tried to, al least for things related to mathematics and physics. English literature, not so much. It is amazing how often those things have been useful for solving a real world problem.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Crazy Good Sleep4 weeks ago
    Crazy Good Sleep

    I hope you carefully read steps 2 and 3. Most of your concerns are addressed there. Clint Ober’s book “Earthing” discusses grounding in a lightning storm. He lays out reasons why it is probably not a problem, but then finishes by saying it might be good to err on the side of caution and not ground in a storm. A static protective wrist band has a high resistance like you suggest, but folks are told not to have an inline resistance high in Ohms because it stops the electron flow that is beneficial.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Ramps for a Low Car6 weeks ago
    Ramps for a Low Car

    The wireless doorbell should work well for you. A nice extra feature would hsve been to make the position of the switch adjustable. I got used to where I located my switch, but being able to shift it for a little earlier warning would hsve been nice, too. Let us know how it works out for you. Thank you for looking.

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  • Setup of $89 Harbor Freight Flux Core Welder

    I used a Hobart Handler 125EZ flux core welder for about seven years. It was an affordable wire feed welder for smaller things. Flux core wire really works better with DC welding current, but the Harbor Freight welder is AC output. Some buy an inexpensive Chinese bridge rectifier to convert the output current to DC, and it improves the performance. Still, the welder will not have all of the refinements a more expensive welder has to make a good stable arc.Try different flux core wire. I like Hobart wire. It just performs better than others I tried. A common fan like you use in your home to stay cool is an asset when welding with flux core so you can blow away all of the smoke it makes. That smoke makes it really difficult to see where you are welding. Place the fan as near to the weld s...

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    I used a Hobart Handler 125EZ flux core welder for about seven years. It was an affordable wire feed welder for smaller things. Flux core wire really works better with DC welding current, but the Harbor Freight welder is AC output. Some buy an inexpensive Chinese bridge rectifier to convert the output current to DC, and it improves the performance. Still, the welder will not have all of the refinements a more expensive welder has to make a good stable arc.Try different flux core wire. I like Hobart wire. It just performs better than others I tried. A common fan like you use in your home to stay cool is an asset when welding with flux core so you can blow away all of the smoke it makes. That smoke makes it really difficult to see where you are welding. Place the fan as near to the weld seam as is practical. Flux core is to be drug, not pushed, when welding. I now have a real MIG welder and I can pull or push the bead. Pushing puts more light on the open seam so I can see more easily and stay on the seam. Prepare the joint well for good root penetration. Weld 1/8" stock from both sides. Anything larger than 1/8" should be ground to make a "V" where the joint will be. Remove slag before welding over a previous weld.I like to tack the weld different places. Then weld toward a tack, dragging the gun rather than pushing it because it is flux core. "If there is slag, you drag." Light from the arc will reflect off of the nearby tack and make it much easier to see where you are welding.Always pick up metal while wearing gloves or use a pliers or tong. You always forget metal may be hot, and you get burned. It is no fun.

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  • Radial Arm Saw Table Alignment -- an Easier Way

    Mine has no slots, but the holes for the screws are somewhat oversized to allow adjustment.

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  • Three-Way and Four-Way Switches--How They Work

    I looked at a Lutron 3-wqy dimmer switch on the Home Depot page. In the FAQs someone asked your question. Several answered in agreement that only one of the switches can be a dimmer switch. All others in the circuit must be a conventional switch, not a dimmer.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Safety Razor Handle2 months ago
    Safety Razor Handle

    Thank you. My wife bought a cylinder of alum for me and it is quite effective. From what I read, the alum is a salt that causes fine blood vessels to constrict. I very seldom get a cut, unless there is a bump or two in the skin.

    It is good to hear from you. I had come to think the $6 razor shown would not give a decent shave, but as I learned better technique I found it does better than I expected. The heavier handle shown in this Instructsble helps a lot, too. Someone said when you are beginning you think you need a different razor. After you become more practiced you find you can get a good shave from any razor. I had turned a wooden bowl for whipping up lather, but should have made the diameter a little larger. Foam tends to flow over the sides. Very recently I was in a Wal-mart and saw a plastic salsa bowl about four inches in diameter for less that two dollars. It works perfectly and is a lot less costly than some of the branded ceramic bowls available at shaving supplies sites.I could have mentioned using...

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    It is good to hear from you. I had come to think the $6 razor shown would not give a decent shave, but as I learned better technique I found it does better than I expected. The heavier handle shown in this Instructsble helps a lot, too. Someone said when you are beginning you think you need a different razor. After you become more practiced you find you can get a good shave from any razor. I had turned a wooden bowl for whipping up lather, but should have made the diameter a little larger. Foam tends to flow over the sides. Very recently I was in a Wal-mart and saw a plastic salsa bowl about four inches in diameter for less that two dollars. It works perfectly and is a lot less costly than some of the branded ceramic bowls available at shaving supplies sites.I could have mentioned using shims to make a mild razor more aggressive. The adjustable razors came about decades after guys first began to shim their razors to suit individual needs. Whiskers on an older guy need a little more aggressive cut than a younger guy needs. The first shims were old razor blades trimmed to remove the sharp edges. Now people use plastic from various food containers. Still, some razors are better than others. The Merkur 23C I bought is easier and nicer to use than my $6 razor. Did you see the Instructsble I did on a razor travel case from a PVC Tee and a threaded piece of 1/2 inch PVC? That is also a way to go cheap. I use that case when I travel and it works very well.

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  • Phil B commented on t3chflicks's instructable Wireless Charging Sofa2 months ago
    Wireless Charging Sofa

    About three weeks ago I saw some material about earthing. It suggests we are surrounded by electrical static energy that upsets the balance of electrons in our bodies. Things like wireless chargers would be part of the problem, especially if they are where you spend time. Earthing sounds like a pseudo-science or medical quackery, especially when some of its advocates speak in New Age terminology. But, I took an old watch with a metallic wrist band and slipped a thin copper wire around it to keep the wire in place. Then I connected the wire to a short piece of 3/16 inch rod and stuck it into the third prong on an electrical wall outlet like the kind used in the USA. Since I began sleeping with that, I believe I am sleeping more soundly based on how easily I go back to sleep when awake an...

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    About three weeks ago I saw some material about earthing. It suggests we are surrounded by electrical static energy that upsets the balance of electrons in our bodies. Things like wireless chargers would be part of the problem, especially if they are where you spend time. Earthing sounds like a pseudo-science or medical quackery, especially when some of its advocates speak in New Age terminology. But, I took an old watch with a metallic wrist band and slipped a thin copper wire around it to keep the wire in place. Then I connected the wire to a short piece of 3/16 inch rod and stuck it into the third prong on an electrical wall outlet like the kind used in the USA. Since I began sleeping with that, I believe I am sleeping more soundly based on how easily I go back to sleep when awake and how I feel in the morning. It is not costing me anything and I will give it a test for ten weeks. But, if earthing is beneficial, a wireless charger where you sit is not what you want.

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  • Paul,Thank you so much for sharing what you found. If someone asks and has not read these comments, I will find yours and mention it. Regards,Phil

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Safety Razor Handle2 months ago
    Safety Razor Handle

    Thank you. It is good to share something someone with only a few tools could do, and it can be part of something that saves the user quite a bit of money.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Making Your Own Slide Rule2 months ago
    Making Your Own Slide Rule

    Thank you for sharing your story. There have been several revolutionary changes in recent decades. For one, I think about the change from points and condenser automobile engine ignition to electronic ignition. Timing lights and dwell tachometers are obsolete.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Brush Blade for a Weed Trimmer2 months ago
    Brush Blade for a Weed Trimmer

    Thank you. I have had interesting problems to solve.

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  • The checks you suggest are all good, but, you can see from the comments of others below many have had difficulty when the one-way needle bearing inside a drive roller began to slip. The professional fix is to replace both rollers or press new bearings inside the rollers. You can also see commenters solved their problem at home when they flushed, dried, and lightly lubricated the bearings inside the drive rollers using a drop or two of ATF. I myself have improved the performance of two machines this way and used both with no problems for several years afterward.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue2 months ago
    Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue

    You also want to avoid making the linkage weaker so that it might bend in the stress of use. I have decided no shorting can happen if the linkage is narrow enoigh that it cannot bridge both terminals simulataneously. After several months of use, the linkage has not worn away insulation on either terminal, so narrowing it was effective and still did not weaken the linkage too much. Adding heat shrink material also adds something that causes drag and impedes the free movement of the linkage, even if the linkage was thinned for it.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Easy Monitor for NordicTrack Skier2 months ago
    Easy Monitor for NordicTrack Skier

    Thank you for your comment and information. As I mentioned to BridgetJ10, a friend who repairs and rebuilds NordicTrack skiers told me NordicTrack used two calibrations on its monitors over the years. I do not know which monitors used which calibration, nor how much one calibration differed from the other. My attempt at calibrating the bicycle spedometer was relatively non-scientific. I adjusted it until it felt as close as possible to the factory monitor we had been using. I find my best use of a monitor is to compare today’s effort to yesterday’s so I know if I am doing sbout the same work.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Making Your Own Slide Rule2 months ago
    Making Your Own Slide Rule

    The slide rule you made is very impressive. When I post something like my slide rule, I check to see what others have done that is similar and try to acknowledge those offerings. I want readers to know I did not shoot from the hip, but did some research before posting. I also want them to know about other offerings that may be more suitable to their purposes, and to know how what I am posting is different, in case that is what they want and need. Thank you for your comment.

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  • Spanner Wrench for Whirlpool or Kenmore Washer Tub Nut

    I no longer have it, but 2 1/2 in h is probably corrrect.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable The Radial Arm Saw -- a Guide of Sorts2 months ago
    The Radial Arm Saw -- a Guide of Sorts

    The model number should be on an aluminum plate on the side under the table. These were made from the late 1940s through the late 1960s. Somewhere on mine there is a month/year code that is pretty obvious.

    Is the saw designed with no knob at the end of the arm, or is the knob simply missing? Some saws had an “L”-shaped lever on the side of the column to index the arm and another lever with a screw theead to lock the arm in place. There are people selling parts of these saws. You may be able to pick up an entire arm for your saw. eBay is one source. I also found a guy who apparently has bought up quite a few parts for these saws. I will need to check with him about giving out his name.

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  • Here is an image from a skier manual I found on-line. It may not be as helpful as I hoped. But, typical of what I have seen, the small axles for the rollers st the ends of the skiis have two flats at one end and threads at the other. I believe you will need to remove the side bosrds. My friend NordicDanny has quite a collection of old skiers and can probably supply parts, maybe even new parts, as well as suggestions on removal and installation. He has a web page at nordicfitnessskimachines (dot) com.

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  • Paul,I am also using a Pro, but it is mid-90s. My friend, NordicDanny, repairs ski machines professionally and knows all about all of the changes from year to year. You could send him a private message. Sometimes you can find a manual on-line with an exploded diagram to help you. Your photo is a little different than my machine. Could you try spraying those rollers with a solvent (WD-40?) and riding the machine several times to break up and flush out any gumming, then lubricate it with oil? You might do that repeatedly until all is good. The manual with mine suggests a few drops of motor oil once a month for regular lubrication, but how much you use the machine would make a difference, too.I am not a very consistent user of my ski machine. I had a Challenger and have a Pro now. I did th...

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    Paul,I am also using a Pro, but it is mid-90s. My friend, NordicDanny, repairs ski machines professionally and knows all about all of the changes from year to year. You could send him a private message. Sometimes you can find a manual on-line with an exploded diagram to help you. Your photo is a little different than my machine. Could you try spraying those rollers with a solvent (WD-40?) and riding the machine several times to break up and flush out any gumming, then lubricate it with oil? You might do that repeatedly until all is good. The manual with mine suggests a few drops of motor oil once a month for regular lubrication, but how much you use the machine would make a difference, too.I am not a very consistent user of my ski machine. I had a Challenger and have a Pro now. I did the procedure I described for restoring the drive rollers on both machines and there were no problems later, only renewed good performance.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable The Radial Arm Saw -- a Guide of Sorts3 months ago
    The Radial Arm Saw -- a Guide of Sorts

    Ron,I have been thinking sbout your problem. I assume you mean you have locked down the knob on the arm, but it is still able to move a little left and right. Does the indexing pin fall into place? Can you tighten the knob? I have never taken apart the mechanism that keeps the arm from moving on the column. Those who have complain about great difficulty getting all of the pieces back together in working order. I am wondering if a previous owner took the locking mechanism apart and did not get it back together again properly.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable EVERYONE Needs a Multi-Meter3 months ago
    EVERYONE Needs a Multi-Meter

    I am confused. Did I mention an LED meter? I know I have seen LED voltmeters, but they give you a voltage range, like greater than 120 VAC, greater than 240 VAC, and greater than 440 VAC. They do not give a precise reading like 117 volts. But, those meters are only for voltages. I have not seen any that give readings for current, resistance, and the other functions on a multimeter. I did a couple of quick searches and found hits for VU meters, but no DIY electrical circuit meters.

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  • Transmission fluid is interesting stuff. It is designed to provide a little lubrication, but without slippage. If your initial application of WD-40 could have dried in the air it would probsbly have worked, but you had not taken the roller assembly apart and the bearings could not dry. Liquid Wrench has always been my favorite penetrating oil, but, it is also the only one I have known since I was a child and saw my father using it around sixty years sgo. I was surprised to learn WD-40 will flush the one-way roller besrings and dry, too. I think you will be surprised how much use you can get from your rollers before you need to flush and lubricate them again. Perhaps if there is some rust in them, more of it will break loose and you will need to flush them again in the nearer future. Oth...

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    Transmission fluid is interesting stuff. It is designed to provide a little lubrication, but without slippage. If your initial application of WD-40 could have dried in the air it would probsbly have worked, but you had not taken the roller assembly apart and the bearings could not dry. Liquid Wrench has always been my favorite penetrating oil, but, it is also the only one I have known since I was a child and saw my father using it around sixty years sgo. I was surprised to learn WD-40 will flush the one-way roller besrings and dry, too. I think you will be surprised how much use you can get from your rollers before you need to flush and lubricate them again. Perhaps if there is some rust in them, more of it will break loose and you will need to flush them again in the nearer future. Otherwise, I think you will be pleased. They will go a long time before you need to do anything to them. Thank you for the report.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Easy Monitor for NordicTrack Skier3 months ago
    Easy Monitor for NordicTrack Skier

    Thank you for your comment. You are to be commended for your clever solution to your need. A good friend repairs NordicTrack skier equipment and knows a lot sbout all of their skier items. He told me the calibration is not the same on all NordicTrack monitor models, but some were calibrated a bit differently. He did not give me any additional details. That might account for the discrepancy between readings you got and the calibration I suggested. I do not know for certain.

    We would need model numbers before I could ask my friend. I did pass on to hum the first of these Schwinn monitors I calibrated for a skier. He wanted to pair it with an official monitor, but they interferred with one another when connected directly as part of the same circuit. I do not know if he pursued it any further. And, welcome to Instructsbles. Unless you just “lurk” you will make friends from all over, some from overseas. Although it is not linked here, I did post in the Community section about refurbishing NordicTrack rollers. Often they begin to “hiccup” and you can restore them by removing the rollers, flushing them a bit with even WD-40, sopping up fluid from your flushing with a tissue until there is no more gray stain from fine metallic dust, and letting them air dry. If y...

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    We would need model numbers before I could ask my friend. I did pass on to hum the first of these Schwinn monitors I calibrated for a skier. He wanted to pair it with an official monitor, but they interferred with one another when connected directly as part of the same circuit. I do not know if he pursued it any further. And, welcome to Instructsbles. Unless you just “lurk” you will make friends from all over, some from overseas. Although it is not linked here, I did post in the Community section about refurbishing NordicTrack rollers. Often they begin to “hiccup” and you can restore them by removing the rollers, flushing them a bit with even WD-40, sopping up fluid from your flushing with a tissue until there is no more gray stain from fine metallic dust, and letting them air dry. If you wish, you can lubricate them with a couple of drops of ATF transmission fluid. It is a terribly cheap alternstive to replacing the rollers and it most often works.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Great Projects From Old How-to Magazines3 months ago
    Great Projects From Old How-to Magazines

    Tom,Welcome to Instructsbles! Enjoy exploring.

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  • Phil B commented on dkeating2's instructable Low Cost Adjustable Rail 4x5 View Camera3 months ago
    Low Cost Adjustable Rail 4x5 View Camera

    There was a time when I so would have loved to do this. You did a great job. Thank you.

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  • Phil B commented on Prototyp 81's forum topic Your instructable failed to publish!3 months ago

    Lately I have gotten this error message, too. It happens when I try to publish from my Windows 7 laptop. A few minutes later I can go to my iPad, access the Instructable from my Drafts, and successfully publish it with no problems. I wrote to Instructables and was advised this is most often a problem with something in the computer's cache.

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  • Phil B's instructable File an Internal Keyway by Hand's weekly stats: 3 months ago
    • File an Internal Keyway by Hand
      157 views
      1 favorites
      0 comments
  • Phil B's instructable Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue's weekly stats: 3 months ago
    • Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue
      4,611 views
      7 favorites
      8 comments
  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue3 months ago
    Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue

    Thank you. A Merry Christmas also to you.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue3 months ago
    Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue

    Thank you. Heat shrink tubing would be worth a try. Whatever makes the linkage wider also makes it thicker, and added thickness in some areas also restricts the ability of the linkage to slide and release. I think the linkage is supposed to release fairly easily so the grinder shuts off if anything jars it, especially anything dangerous to the user.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Improving a Hand Truck3 months ago
    Improving a Hand Truck

    Yours is an interesting idea. Remember that st the time I did this we were days from loading a truck and moving across the country. All but a very few hand tools were already packed and not so easy to find.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Homemade Jack Stands3 months ago
    Homemade Jack Stands

    Thank you. Mine did work well for the time I needed them. I have always like things with three legs because they are always stable, even on rough or uneven surfaces.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue4 months ago
    Harbor Freight Grinder Rescue

    Thank you for looking and for commenting. I expect these Chinese grinders are available in New Zealand, too, although likely with a different brand name. Several of their electric tools use the same motor with a different head. I expect they all have the same failure prone plastic linkage or one very similar to it. I am also very much aware of what it was like before I had a welder and try to provide an option for people in that situation when possible. A Merry Christmas to you.

    Thank you for looking and commenting. Five years of service for ten dollars sounds like you have already gotten your money out of it. Mine was only a few months old when the linkage broke. If you have gotten five years of service your switch arrangement must be more dursble. My son-in-law buys very good name brand grinders and runs them continuously. He overheats them and burns them up. When the metal head gets the least bit warm I make certain I give it a rest so it can cool.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Three-Way and Four-Way Switches--How They Work4 months ago
    Three-Way and Four-Way Switches--How They Work

    I cannot conceive of any way wires to and from a 4-way switch could supply power for the lightning circuit.

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  • There are LED calculators on-line, also LED calculator apps. Just enter 12 volts as your source voltage and indicate the current should be in the 20 to 25 milliamp range. Then indicate 2 volts is the load or LED voltage. The calculator will give you the value of the resistor. I did this when I wanted to illuminate the smoked gray plastic water reservoir on a Keurig coffeemaker. I had an LED pencil flashlight and wanted to power it with a 9 volt battery after that battery was replaced with a new battery for a smoke detector. The flashlight may have had its own internal resisance. It was designed to run on two very expensive 3 volt batteries, so I indicated 6 volts as the load voltsge. The calculator told me to use a 150 Ohm resistor, and it worked like a charm. (I just ran your numbers i...

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    There are LED calculators on-line, also LED calculator apps. Just enter 12 volts as your source voltage and indicate the current should be in the 20 to 25 milliamp range. Then indicate 2 volts is the load or LED voltage. The calculator will give you the value of the resistor. I did this when I wanted to illuminate the smoked gray plastic water reservoir on a Keurig coffeemaker. I had an LED pencil flashlight and wanted to power it with a 9 volt battery after that battery was replaced with a new battery for a smoke detector. The flashlight may have had its own internal resisance. It was designed to run on two very expensive 3 volt batteries, so I indicated 6 volts as the load voltsge. The calculator told me to use a 150 Ohm resistor, and it worked like a charm. (I just ran your numbers in my LED app. On my phone and the answer is 500 Ohms.)

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable EVERYONE Needs a Multi-Meter4 months ago
    EVERYONE Needs a Multi-Meter

    Thank you for looking and for commenting. Since posting this, I have watched coupons in Harbor Freight Tool advertisements and often found thise meters free with a purchase. I have gotten a few, mostly to give to friends who did not have a meter. I showed them how to test batteries. I showed them how to check for power in an outlet, but told them not to do it if they do not feel safe.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Copy Kindle Text4 months ago
    Copy Kindle Text

    In part, I post things like this so I can remember what I did months or years later when I need it again. I am glad it is useful to you. Thank you for your comment and for looking.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Make an Electric Motor Run Again4 months ago
    Make an Electric Motor Run Again

    By definition three phase power is AC only, not DC. It is about 208 volts. There are ways, albeit not very efficietnt, to run a three phase motor on single phase 220 volt current, but, if your wall outlet is 115 volts, it is an unworkable situation. I am not an expert, but this is what I remember reading. Perhaps someone can correct me.

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  • Phil B commented on Bootluck's instructable E-Cargo-Bike_DIY4 months ago
    E-Cargo-Bike_DIY

    Nett! Eine gute Arbeit!

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Cuptisserie With Four Spindles5 months ago
    Cuptisserie With Four Spindles

    Thank you for your comment and for looking. I encounter the lady who asked for this a couple of times a month, sometimes more. She is trying to be a wife, mom, nurse in a hospital, and a college student all at the same time. She says she loves her cuptisserie, but I am not sure how much she has been sble to use it. She has never shown me anything she has done on it. I am technically retired, but find myself making a lot of thIngs for other people at their request. Since I was a pastor for 40 years, I also get asked to fill in two or more times a month for other pastors who need to be away. This cuptisserie is fairly rugged. Much of that is due to scrap steel I happened to have available at the time.

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  • Phil B commented on djpolymath's instructable Shaving Brush5 months ago
    Shaving Brush

    The bristles are called a knot. They come pre-assembled with the bristles bundled together. Search the Internet using that term. Knots come in vsrying widths. Wider knots usually make more lather more quickly. Knots can be synthetic, boar, horse hair, and badger. Each has a different price.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Airline Travel Tips5 months ago
    Airline Travel Tips

    Thank you. Those are good observations.

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  • Phil B commented on Kryptonite's forum topic "Most Popular" ... ?5 months ago

    Featured status seems to be a subjective evaluation by an editor. Like you, some I thought might be featured were not and some were featured to my grest surprise. I have noticed some editors are more likely to festure an Instructable than are others. I gave up worrying sbout it and publish to please myself.

    Now and then one of my Instructsbles has been on the Popular page. Usually they were from years ago when they suddenly showed up as popular. For me the curious thIng was the number of views or favorites did not seem to rise significantly. It is all a mystery to me.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Curing 2-cycle Engine Problems5 months ago
    Curing 2-cycle Engine Problems

    Thank you, Louis, for the good news. I love it when small things make a big difference. I hope you find whatever makes it rough when it runs.

    Nick,I was not getting e-mail notificstions of comments, but Instructables has fixed the problem. So, I did not see your questions earlier. Could your air cleaner be blocked? The engine would be as if the choke is fully engaged and would flood easily. Try starting the engine with the air cleaner removed and see if that makes a difference. A couple of moves ago we gsve away the weed trimmer in the photos, but discovered we need one again and bought a Troy-bilt TB35EC a few months ago. Any problems with it have been due to a lean condition. I have not yet seen it flood. Customer reviews on it complain about hard starting after a season, maybe sooner. I have found screws loosen on it easily, including two on the back for the Quick Start power starter feature.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Make an Electric Motor Run Again5 months ago
    Make an Electric Motor Run Again

    Thank you. Until recently Amazon was my default site for much of my on-line shopping, but there have been recent developments to change that, and I discovered many things have a better price elsewhere.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Forged Split Steel Cross Simply Done5 months ago
    Forged Split Steel Cross Simply Done

    Thank you for looking and for your comment. The firebrick absorbs some heat initially, but once it has, it serves to concentrate the heat and bounce it back to the steel. There is quite a difference with the brick. Without it, the steel never would get hot enough to bend.

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  • Strike an Arc Exactly Where You Want It to Begin--stick Welder

    I am sorry to be late with my response to your inquiries, especially the first nine days ago. Somehow notification of comments to my posts got shut off. It was a while before I asked the folks at Instructsbles about it, and the notifications were restored just today. If you wish, you can attach an alligator clip on a light cable to the carbon rod and another clip on the same cable to the steel being welded. If the carbon rod is not caked with welding residue and flux, touching the carbon rod with the tip of the elctrode while the tip of the carbon rod rests on the bare steel should also produce an arc when the electrode comes into contact with the carbon rod. I got a couple of dozen carbon rods in small packing box at a welding supply store. I did not check to see if you live in the US...

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    I am sorry to be late with my response to your inquiries, especially the first nine days ago. Somehow notification of comments to my posts got shut off. It was a while before I asked the folks at Instructsbles about it, and the notifications were restored just today. If you wish, you can attach an alligator clip on a light cable to the carbon rod and another clip on the same cable to the steel being welded. If the carbon rod is not caked with welding residue and flux, touching the carbon rod with the tip of the elctrode while the tip of the carbon rod rests on the bare steel should also produce an arc when the electrode comes into contact with the carbon rod. I got a couple of dozen carbon rods in small packing box at a welding supply store. I did not check to see if you live in the USA or elsewhere. If you are in the USA, try an Airgas welding supply store, or any other welding supply store. Carbon rods are more commonly used for back gouging to remove metal. They may not be used a lot by home weldors, but they are used in industry. Once carbon arc torches for 230 volt welders were fairly common. They are useful for heating steel so you can bend it easily. I have another Instructsble on how I made one.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's forum topic Microwave stopped heating5 months ago

    I took some steps not mentioned above because I wanted to stress the point the problem can be something so simple as a weak or intermittent connection, and I did not want to clutter what I wrote with lots of not quite necessary details. I did remove connections from the door microswitches and test them. One of them may have been unreliable to some degree. (In trying to free it from the snap in catches the top came off and parts fell out.) I did replace the switches as a precaution of relatively low cost. I found only one thermal cutout, and my Ohmmeter indicated it is good. I did test it out of the circuit to avoid spurious readings due to feedback through a back channel. The normal sound of the fan and the carousel made it very difficult to distinguish the presence or absence of any so...

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    I took some steps not mentioned above because I wanted to stress the point the problem can be something so simple as a weak or intermittent connection, and I did not want to clutter what I wrote with lots of not quite necessary details. I did remove connections from the door microswitches and test them. One of them may have been unreliable to some degree. (In trying to free it from the snap in catches the top came off and parts fell out.) I did replace the switches as a precaution of relatively low cost. I found only one thermal cutout, and my Ohmmeter indicated it is good. I did test it out of the circuit to avoid spurious readings due to feedback through a back channel. The normal sound of the fan and the carousel made it very difficult to distinguish the presence or absence of any sound from the transformer or the msgnetron. If there had been an abnormal growl, as with a bad capacitor, I could have noticed that. It was so much easier and more certain to use a line current ammeter normally clamped around one conductor and watch for an 13 amp. draw compared to a 5 amp. draw. I did check the bleeder resistor in the capacitor, and it was good. My digital multimeter has a capacitance function and I did confirm the value of the capacitor. I also checked it for shorts and opens. I have no scrap microwaves available. Thank you for your detailed discussion.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Low Tech Inclinometer 5 months ago
    Low Tech Inclinometer

    Thank you. He removed it because he is waiting for his nephew to sandblast and paint the railing to which it attaches. And, the end of the mowing season is near. He used it and quickly discovered he is often tilted over more than the recommended 15 degree limit.

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  • How to Make a Pie Crust for the Holiday Season

    Some years ago I was working out of our house and my wife was gone during the day. Thanksgiving guests were coming in a few days. My wife asked if I couod make some pies. I had never made pie crust, but we had an old basic Betty Crocker cookbook for kids. I very precisely measured everything. I even sifted the flour by hand. Our guests arrived and everyone took a piece of pie after the meal. My wife took a bite of hers before I was ready for mine. She got a strange look on her face. I wondered if I had used baking soda instead of baking powder or salt in place of sugar. Later I learned my crust was better than any she had ever made in her years in the kitchen. It also helped a lot that Butter Flavored Crisco had just come onto the market and I used it.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Make an Electric Motor Run Again5 months ago
    Make an Electric Motor Run Again

    Thank you. I was a Lutheran pastor for forty years and still fill in regularly. I always enjoyed boiling things in the Bible down to simple steps in simple terms so people grasped something they did not previously know or understand.

    I have not actually seen one, but understand it to be a small “black box” that uses an internal (to the switch) timing circuit rather than centrifugal weights to disconnect the starting windings before they can overheat and be damaged. I did an Internet search when I originally posted this and found them without any difficulty. Amazon has one. https://www.amazon.com/Samusco-ECS-125P-Electronic-Centrifugal/dp/B015QBSCVQ/ref=sr_1_13?ie=UTF8&qid=1541533986&sr=8-13&keywords=Motor+Electronic+start+switch

    Thank you.

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  • Phil B's instructable Razor Travel Case's weekly stats: 5 months ago
    • Razor Travel Case
      732 views
      1 favorites
      2 comments
  • Phil B entered Razor Travel Case in the Plastics Contest contest 5 months ago
  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Razor Travel Case5 months ago
    Razor Travel Case

    Thank you for your comment. I thought of several other ideas before this: a metal tin with polyurethane foam cut to fit the razor, inletting a wood block, a wood box with partitions and a sliding lid. Even this changed a little. I had thought of gluing a piece of 3/4” PVC into the Tee, but making it half of an inch shorter than the handle. Then I would slide the razor head in from the side and screw the handle to the head. There would be enough handle to grasp with a finger and a thumb. Thank you gor looking.

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  • Making Really Thin Metal Shims From Razor Blades

    You are making thin metal shims for any desired purpose. Many who use double edge safety razors may use old razor blades to shim between the bottom plate of a three piece razor snd the blade to increase the blade exposure. That takes a relatively mild razor and makes it more aggressive. Mild razors do not easily produce nicks and cuts when shaving, but also may not attack the whiskers aggressively enough to give a really smooth shave. And, a more aggressive razor may make it easier to nick or cut yourself while shaving. People have been shimming their razors for many decades. Because of that, adjustable razors were developed. The adjustment feature increases the distance between the bottom plate and the blade. It is difficult to know how your face will respond to a razor before buying i...

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    You are making thin metal shims for any desired purpose. Many who use double edge safety razors may use old razor blades to shim between the bottom plate of a three piece razor snd the blade to increase the blade exposure. That takes a relatively mild razor and makes it more aggressive. Mild razors do not easily produce nicks and cuts when shaving, but also may not attack the whiskers aggressively enough to give a really smooth shave. And, a more aggressive razor may make it easier to nick or cut yourself while shaving. People have been shimming their razors for many decades. Because of that, adjustable razors were developed. The adjustment feature increases the distance between the bottom plate and the blade. It is difficult to know how your face will respond to a razor before buying it and brining it home to use. Each person’s face is different. And, as a man ages, his whiskers often cut better with s more aggressive razor than he had been using up to that point. So, shimming can make a razor work better. Many use a sharp scissors to remove the cutting edges from an old blade. But, shims can be made from anything from soda cans to plastic margarine tub lids. It is necessary to experiment to find the best result for you.

    “Dollar” stores usually sell double edge razor blades.

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  • Phil B commented on Techgenie's instructable DIY - Magnetic Compass6 months ago
    DIY - Magnetic Compass

    At the USAF Museum in Fairborn, Ohio there is a World War II display on Prisoners of War. US fliers imprisoned could get phonograph records and sewing needles sent to them. They heated the records with a candle and pressed a small cup from part of it. They magnetized the sewing needles. They cut a disc of cardboard to float on water in the small lressed cup and inserted the needle into the cardboard disc. That all gav them a compass for use during escapes.

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  • Phil B's instructable Low Tech Inclinometer 's weekly stats: 6 months ago
    • Low Tech Inclinometer
      4,272 views
      20 favorites
      26 comments
  • Phil B commented on mileslucas's instructable How to Wet Shave With a Safety Razor.6 months ago
    How to Wet Shave With a Safety Razor.

    I know this appeared in 2016. I recently began looking for an alternative to the expensive 5-blade cartridges I have liked. I ordered a two piece screw-on shave head for $6 and made my own handle. At that price, I am not out much if I do not like it. Further, that head has an open comb on one side and a closed comb on the other so the user can determine which is best for him (or her). Blades also make a difference. I bought five blades, but have to agree with those who say that brand does not work for them, even though it works for some. I bought a pack of five Chinese blades from a dollar store, and they work quite well for me. Now I am waiting for blades from a company whose blades get very good reviews. One of the best pieces of advice I know is to shave in total quiet so you can hea...

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    I know this appeared in 2016. I recently began looking for an alternative to the expensive 5-blade cartridges I have liked. I ordered a two piece screw-on shave head for $6 and made my own handle. At that price, I am not out much if I do not like it. Further, that head has an open comb on one side and a closed comb on the other so the user can determine which is best for him (or her). Blades also make a difference. I bought five blades, but have to agree with those who say that brand does not work for them, even though it works for some. I bought a pack of five Chinese blades from a dollar store, and they work quite well for me. Now I am waiting for blades from a company whose blades get very good reviews. One of the best pieces of advice I know is to shave in total quiet so you can hear when the razor is cutting whiskers and when it is not. Although I was doubtful, I am beginning to like wet shsving. I have not yet tried shaving soap and a brush, though.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Low Tech Inclinometer 6 months ago
    Low Tech Inclinometer

    Thank you for your comment. I understand very well what you are saying. In the past I have seen a number of center finders made with CAD programs and laser cutters. I posted two Instructsbles for slightly different (from each other) center finders based on using simple principles of high school geometry and basic tools, and both are quire accurate.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Low Tech Inclinometer 6 months ago
    Low Tech Inclinometer

    I thought about using a bubble of air (like a spirit level) in a clear tube, but with colored liquid. My first thought was oil with a color in it, like transmission fluid. Then I wondered what might happen if the chemical composition of the oil and that of the plastic tube were not compatible, or if the plugs I used st the end of the tube leaked. And, I wondered if the bubble wouod be as responsive to changes in the tilt of the machine as the single steel ball in a tube.

    Thank you.

    Thank you. Personally, I was expecting that Kubota would say anything under about 30 degrees is safe, but was surprised when they recommend stayng under 15 degrees. They are also concerned sbout when wheels begin to slide, which could put you into a sharp list unexpectedly. I used rather soft plastic tubing. Something with firmer walls would have been good. I do not want to think about a spinning mower blade grinding away at me because a mower tipped over. One of the other commenters here mentioned learning to fly an airplane a bit more than 50 years ago. Pilots are drilled to rely on their instruments because intuition can be so very in error leading to vertigo.

    The angle indicator I made from a school protractor and needle indicator is an inclinometer. I decided against a pendulum style because the pendulum indicator would stick on the scale behind it whenever the mower nose is pointed downward in the least. A ball in a tube is not affected by rolling lawns that pitch the nose of the machine up and then down and up again.

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  • Phil B commented on Phil B's instructable Low Tech Inclinometer 6 months ago
    Low Tech Inclinometer

    Tapping on the orange words “another Instructsble” should take you there. If not, search Instructables for “precision angle finder.” I did not use a pendulum style device because the front of the mower pitches up and then down with the contours of the ground, and the pendulum would bind on the frame of the angle finder. The ball in a tube is not affected by the front of the mower pitching up and down.

    Thank you for asking. My friend asked for a handrail on the front of his Kubota mower so he can get on and off more safely and more easily. See what appears to me to be the 2nd photo, but it is difficult to guess until I complete the post. The tubing is 1.125 inches in diameter. I used existing slots on the front of the machine to anchor the mounting bolts. I used a hose clamp to suspend the inclinometer from the top bar. My friend gets on and off from the right side of the photo. The inclinometer is about a quartter of the way from the left side in the photo. i hope this helps.

    The owner had the opportunity to use this for the first time two days ago. I will ask him if the ball needs dampening when I next see him in a day or two. I have seen him on his mower and he does moves forward at a modest speed that should not necessitate much dampening.

    Thank you for looking and commenting.

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