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Geoff S

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Geoff S last won the day on May 6

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  1. Rolls-Royce is still British. I think BMW has the rights to use the name for cars but the British company is the ultimate owner of it. I think there was some sort of deal when RR took over BMW's gas turbine operation. I used to interview potential under-graduate and graduate trainees on the so-called milk round (so long ago I've almost forgotten I did!) but we used to mark them down if they mentioned cars as part of the business
  2. Semiconductors, especially silicon are incredibly reliable and rugged - including integrated circuits. Many years ago I was involved in the design of short range radio telemetry used to measure temperature (via thermocouples) and vibration (via strain gauges) in gas turbines. They were installed in the engine in an annular carrier and subject to at least 125 deg C and 20,000 g acceleration (plus vibration) and really the only failures were connecting wires to the transducers coming adrift during running. The circuits were embedded in epoxy and the transmitters I designed were simply a pair of silicon transistors - very crude but the range was measured in millimetres (just as well because I was using Band 1 TV frequencies -40 to 80 Mhz ) Resistors are reliable but capacitors less so, particularly aluminium electrolytics. We used a lot of solid tantalum electrolytics which are very good. As Nigel says the main source of electrical problems are connectors, including ones like brushes or pots - ie, anything that moves or is moveable.
  3. Not as Ezee Pezee as you thought then Mine also needs some repair after a too low approach, longer than I expected grass caught the undercarriage and tipped it in. Nothing like as bad as yours though.
  4. As a child in the 1940s I was fed a desert spoonful of cod liver oil and malt daily. It was thick and brown and I loved it I occasionally used to add a drop Castrol 'R' to the petrol tank of my 1932 Scott TT Replica just for the lovely smell - the shallowness of youth!
  5. I don't know about Ohio but Kitty Hawk is on the northern part of the Outer Banks of N Carolina.
  6. We visited Kitty Hawk about 20 years ago and the museum is well worth a visit. I was expecting a MAGA hype attitude but I couldn't have been more wrong. It was more like Shuttleworth collection with a load of enthusiastic volunteers only too pleased to help with any queries. Kill Devil Hill, where a lot of the hang glider experiments were carried out, is a huge sand dune which once was prone to natural movement because of the effects of wind but has been stabilised and there's a monument to the Wrights on the top. We cycled up the track on a borrowed tandem just for the hell of it - I wonder if we're the only ones? No-one said anything about it. The route of that famous photographed first flight is marked, of course, and takes very little time to walk. Apparently, the Wrights set up the camera and an assistant operated the shutter. It was the first (and only?) photograph he ever took. There must be millions of copies reproduced in magazines etc. In fact I bought a copy there and it's on my workshop wall now.
  7. The new number stars with GBR followed by numerous (13?) alphanumeric characters and I think (hope) doesn't change. I'm pretty sure I paid mine when I renewed my BMFA membership and then received my new, permanent number. It isn't exactly clear and the whole thing is a mess but I think is now more settled.
  8. Quite a fan of DeHaviland aircraft; it probably started when I used regularly to cycle past the factory on the old A1 at Hatfield on the way to tech college in the late 50s or as a customer at Roy Claridge's motorcycle shop opposite.
  9. Couldn't free plans be available as pdfs? They're easy to print out at home, either complete or as small parts which can be stuck on the wood as patterns to make cutting out easier.
  10. Despite having been involved on and off with computers since 1961 and with electronics in general even longer (since birth as we lived at the family radio/electrical/jewellers/clock repair/ photographic shop - my dad and grandfather had lots of interests ) I still like paper publications. We still have a daily newspaper (though I do read a lot on-line, too) and I subscribe to the paper RCME and I'd miss them both. I'm also a great fan of paper maps. Even when we use a GPS Satnav in the car, my wife always has the map book open and I'm a huge fan of OS maps because they tell you so much more than a tiny screen ever can. I think it would diminish life if they ever disappeared and those who've never used them would really miss out without realising it. A well-balanced combination of both digital and paper media is the key. I used to write a fair bit of software when I worked and I always did a print out of the code for debugging because it was so much easier to scribble corrections in pencil whilst flicking from page to page. In fact I think I have the listing for a floating point maths routine I wrote in assembler somewhere - sad isn't it? As my interests have changed over my relatively long life so have the magazines I've bought. At one time I've subscribed to Motor Cycling and Motor Cycle Sport (I have over 3 decades worth stashed in the loft), Wireless World, Yachts and Yachting, various cycling magazines and now RCME amongst others. I've enjoyed them all. I even edited a 2000 issue bi-monthly national cycle club magazine for a few years. Does anyone remember all the Practical XXXX magazines mostly edited by FJ Camm - I noticed one title in Morrisons yesterday with a Practical XXX heading and I don't think it was from the same stable.
  11. Yet in Norway there are wooden churches over 1000 years old and magnificent structures. I remember wondering when we saw them in 1966 why they didn't rot.
  12. I'm not sure if the tyres are reinforced, just that the manual quotes that the tyre pressure should be 50psi, which, incidentally, is the same as for our old Ford LWB Transit based campervan. I usually set my bike tyre pressures at 90 psi.
  13. It certainly has been exceptionally hot. Summer 1995 (the year I retired) was very warm and dry but nothing like this. I had a new frame built in Reynolds 653 and never bothered fitting mudguards until the autumn and rode 1000s of miles - some of them the 20 miles each way for model flying lessons Brendon O'Neil is an idiot. I'm old enough to remember the summer of 1976 very well. One weekend in June a cricket match in Buxton was cancelled because of snow and the following weekend the drought began. It wasn't the temperature that was the big talking point; it was the lack of rain. We had 2 sailing holidays that year. The first (in August) was the national championships for our dinghy class (Graduate) in Saundersfoot. It was certainly warm but we still wore wet suits. The sand above the tide line was too warm to walk on in bare feet and it was impossible to walk on the prom without stamping on some of the 1000s of ladybirds crawling around - never seen so many before or since. It was a championship for the light airs specialists as the wind was very light. The second was on the Clyde in September. My wife and I with another couple chartered a 27' Sabre yacht based in the Gare Loch and cruised the northern part of the Clyde (we weren't permitted to go south of the northern tip of Arran). Unfortunately we had to use the auxiliary engine quite a lot because of the lack of wind. The main features were 13/14' long basking sharks which you could sail alongside and giant jellyfish that looked like floating Victorian lampshades. The temperature wasn't really a problem and was much lower than 30 deg. btw the tyre pressure monitor this am read 49 psi.
  14. Being a very new caravan user (we replaced our ageing campervan with a 2 berth Swift Basecamp 2) I was a bit concerned about caravan punctures and not being aware of them until a flailing tyre had wrought untold damage to the van. I bought a tyre pressure monitor from Banggood. It's intended for cars but it works perfectly using just 2 monitors and the RF connection has no problem with the display on the car's dashboard. We returned from a short break yesterday when the ambient temperature was about 36 deg. The van's tyre pressures increased from 50 psi to 58 and triggered the over pressure alarm I'd set to what I thought adequately high. Not a serious problem but I assume the car tyre pressures were equally affected. There's built-in tyre pressure monitoring for the car but I'm not sure if it triggers for over pressure. I was surprised the pressure increase due to temperature was getting on for 20%.
  15. I was spectating at Buckminster on Saturday when the news filtered through. I was totally shocked because if anyone epitomised 'being alive' it was Alex. He always seemed to be enjoying himself. He was a regular visitor to our scale day at Ashbourne. He will be greatly missed both personally and for his articles and photographs. Condolences to his friends and family,
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