Fix A Fridge
Our refrigerator started acting up one day after a power outage: cold on one side (freezer), hot on the other (fridge). Even though it is only a few years old the warranty only covered big items, like the compressor. But how do you tell what's broken without potentially spending money on a repair call? Here's what I found and how it was fixed.
Point and Shoot Macros
In previous articles I’ve focused on macro photography using digital SLRs. This article will demonstrate that you don’t need an expensive SLR with exchangeable lenses and macro adaptors to have fun with macro photography. In fact you should be able to use most point and shoot cameras and even a web camera like the Apple iSight.
Macro Photography II
In the first macro article I discussed techniques for taking Macro photos using a D70 (or equivalent) and an inexpensive lens. This article dives closer, much closer, to our subject while still keeping costs relatively low.
Homemade Lighting Softbox
This article presents an inexpensive, homemade softbox. A softbox is used to fully illuminate photographic subjects, helping to reduce glare and hard shadow definitions. And, in my case, to keep the bugs in!
D70 Wired Remote
Nikon's popular D70 DSLR doesn't have an option for a wired remote. This article turns their ML-L3 wireless remote into a handy wired remote.
In January of 2004 I drove from New Hampshire to Florida and tracked the journey live on the web using a GPS and a cell phone. Find out how it was done and check out the resulting maps.
D70 Macro Photography
I really enjoy macro photography. After upgrading to a D70 DSLR I was looking for an economical way to take close-ups of the flowers and insects around the yard. This article describes a relatively low cost solution along with a few macro photography techniques.
How to Attract Birds & Butterflies to Your Yard
While you are contemplating the landscaping of your yard and garden give some thought to Birdscaping as well. With a little extra planning you'll not only have a yard and garden that you'll enjoy, but one that will be enjoyed by birds and butterflies alike. Join our guest columnist Linda Schneider to find out how.
Mix together empty soda/pop bottles, pvc pipe, a bicycle pump, a splash of water and what do you get? Water rockets! Nothing beats a homemade water rocket for hours of inexpensive fun. Join us for an exploration into the basics behind building and launching homemade water rockets.
Making Ginger Beer
Once upon a time we could buy Reed's Extra Ginger Brew locally. Sometimes, while traveling, I'd even run across a new, exotic ginger beer. But most of the time there's nothing but ginger ale, which isn't even close. I finally decided to do something about it and learn to make ginger beer at home...
Photographing the Sun
We've really been enjoying our telescope. We watched Mars in 2003, gawked at the Moon through all of its phases, and lately we've been keeping an eye on Comet Near. There's another ripe opportunity for using the telescope if done right: viewing Sun spots.
Installing a backyard Pond
Our first pond was spurred on by an end of the year sale on pond kits at Sears. The next Spring, while one of my nephews was visiting, we dug a good sized hole, plopped the plastic liner in, anchored the edges with rocks, filled with water, added a pump a few fish and called it good. No getting off that easy this time...
Forget what you know about portable stoves and DC powered hot pots. The world has a new portable, efficient, and easy to use system that provides a cup of boiling water in a couple of minutes. Let's look inside a Jetboil: invented and manufactured in New Hampshire.
Inside a Pellet Stove
Spring is approaching and with it a time to clean and put away our winter toys. It is also time to clean out our pellet woodstove. Let's take the stove apart, see how it works, and discover all of the places dirt might be lurking.
We like to snack on Beef Jerky, especially when on a hike or a backpacking trip. The problem is that the stuff you find in stores is very expensive ($20/lb and up) and not always that good, or good for you. Time to head into the kitchen to make our own homemade Jerky.
Dishwasher Repair and Maintenance
Being a take-it-apart-myself kind of guy I never opt for the extended warranties, which means I'm the one with my head in the dishwasher on New Year's day. Let's take a dishwasher apart and try to make it work better.
Homemade Countertop Pickles
Towards the end of each growing season our garden starts producing cucumbers faster than we can eat or give them away. That means only one thing...pickles!
Pergo Prodigy Installation
We installed Pergo Prodigy in three rooms around the beginning of 2002. Prior to that we had installed a similar floating floor (Versastrip) in our kitchen, dining/living room, and upstairs hallway. The Versastrip is real wood and wins the wood-look-alike contest, but the Pergo looks pretty darn good and you can't beat the ease of installation and durability.
Making Maple Syrup
One late winter walk through the woods we came across a Maple Syrup operation. In picture postcards and old movies you see buckets hanging from metal taps and a diligent New Englander walking from tree to tree collecting buckets. That's not a very scalable operation when you have hundreds of trees tapped.
Refrigerating the Web
One sleeplessness night I noticed that the refrigerator seemed to be running all of the time. That got me wondering: how often does it run, how often do we open the doors, how big is the correlation between the two, and what about that light...does it ever go out? There was only one way to find out...
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