Saturday, July 19, 2014

Hot Day, Warm Sunset

We're having rather hot temperatures this weekend, pretty much dissuading me from doing any real riding.

Temperatures finally dipped into the low 80's near sunset and I headed out with Scarlett to catch the sunset.

Turns out, the spot I parked Scarlett at, one of the usual spots for sunset pictures, is near a local geocache.  I looked for quite a few minutes and even though it was rated "easy", I failed to find it.  Oh well.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

New Job....not much riding.

So I started working for a new company this past week, Emerald Data Solutions, as their network/infrastructure engineer.  It's a virtual company in that all employees work from home.  Yep, 100% work from home, no more commuting in the crap traffic that is Denver traffic.

I flew to Park City, Utah this past weekend for a team summit and meet most of the folks comprising the 24 person company.  Yep, small company with a family culture I am told and everyone was very welcoming from the president on down!  I've spent too much time in the big company/enterprise and I think I will like it here at EDS.  Oh, and I will be a full time employee again, not a contractor this time.

Got back home on Sunday and have barely ridden perhaps three hours since then!  I rode yesterday to the Encana data center to return some gear and today I spent several hours at the CenturyLink data center where EDS gear is hosted.

Lots to do, lots to learn about the environment, and so have spent some long days trying to get up to speed on the environment.  Once I get spun up, I think there will be more opportunities to ride, work, ride some more and then of course, repeat.

What I am hoping to do is ride to camping locations with good WIFI Internet connectivity, work as needed and then finish the day with some riding!

I see interesting and fun times ahead, both for riding and working.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Lightening my Camping Load

Last year's ride to Alaska and back highlighted to me that the equipment I schlep along for camping is too big and heavy.

I will be sticking with the two man tent that I have, for now, as I like to bring in my riding gear and assorted stuff at night.  It works, it's waterproof so long as I keep up on the waterproofing sprays.

The stove I took was a two-burner stove from Coleman.  Worked great but bulky and heavy.

src: google

Recently I found (while purging closets) the old field stove I had used while in the Army.  Its a Scorpion brand stove that uses butane canisters for fuel:

A similar stove

However, the fuel canister I had stored with it was depleted, no big surprise as its been over 20 years since I used it.  The propane fuel bottles I have in stock weren't usable of course due to the connection.  However, as butane doesn't work as well in colder temps and such, I decided to find an adapter that would allow me the use of the more ubiquitous propane bottles rather than stocking up on butane canisters:


The above is the Kovea LPG Adapter and it cost me $26 through amazon.  As you can see in the pic above, it has male connectors on each end, one for propane bottles and one for butane canisters.  You set the flow screw to a bit above fully closed to handle the higher pressure from the propane fuel bottle and you're good to go!  Tested it the other day, works fine.

example pic showing use of regular propane bottle, kovea adapter and a small
stove similar to the one I use.
src: LINK

Yes, am aware of multi-fuel stoves but also have been told that the ones that burn gasoline also tend to add a "gas" taste to food cooked with it?  I don't know and besides, the propane bottles I plan to use can be had most anywhere.

Another item that was bulky and somewhat heavy, was the folding camp chair I sometimes take along when camping.  This was replaced by an item which weighs much less and stores quick compact, the Coleman Camp Stool:

Coleman Camp Stool: $14

The above will also come in handy as a stool to sit on while working on the motorcycle while on the road; it is just the right height for me to use it instead of kneeling while doing repairs and maintenance.  Dimensions when folder: 10.2 in. x 8.4 in. x 1.6 in. (26 cm x 21 cm x 4 cm)

The old Army sleeping bag, which is rated for -10F, I'll keep though it is a bit bulky, just need to get a better waterproof bag for it.  It doesn't weigh much, with is the more overriding concern for me when camping.  

All for now, we'll see how things go as I hope to go camping now and then this Summer and Fall.

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Additional Storage for Scarlett

After seeing the ammunition cans used by the three Uralisti on their rigs during my recent visit with them as they crossed the country on US50; I began to have thoughts.

So, the other day, I went to the local Army Surplus store and lucked upon a used storage container of rather strange "provenance".  Not a typical ammo can, not as robust but also not as heavy, it seems to have been a container for items belonging to a drogue or pop chute?

 Coerce?  Weird.
The kangi characters suggest Chinese perhaps....the two
left most characters are 8 and 9

 What drew me to buy this box, was that it opens from the side.

 The bright orange handle, immediately removed.

 A bit rusty on the inside, nothing some naval jelly didn't cure

 No idea if tag is original

 After rust removal, a coat of blue primer inside and out

Several coats of flat black paint, to include one coat of rubberized coating later, it was ready to mount to the underside of Scarlett's tub, right after the snowmen supports.

As with the new Kolpin Gas Can you see below, I used large washers to distribute the load where the bolts secured both items.

 A small lock (enough to keep honest people honest) secures the lid

Now there's room to carry my "self-recovery" ropes, come-along device, tow strap and a spare inner tube.