The rose bushes survived Snowpocalypse 2018

Very happy to see that the rose bushes survived Snowpocalypse 2018.

Rose bushes post-Snowpocalypse 2018
Rose bushes post-Snowpocalypse 2018

I had covered them up with some plastic sheeting to try to protect them a bit from the freezing weather we had, and then the snow came. All the snow accumulation on top of the sheet kind of flattened the bushes and they were pretty sad looking for a long while after that.

A few weeks ago leaves started sprouting on the bushes like crazy, so I guess the bushes are doing ok despite the snow and smushing and recent frosty mornings.

No signs of anything resembling rose buds yet, but maybe in a few more weeks.

Drill pressing

One of the things I’ve been wanting for the workbench for a while now is a bench top drill press so that I can put holes into things with a little more precision than I can with a hand drill.

At my local Habitat For Humanity Restore today, I came across one that looked in pretty decent condition and just the size that I was looking for. Price was pretty reasonable ($50), so I bought it.

Drill press
Drill press

It’s an older model Delta 11-950 8″ drill press with 1/4 hp motor and 5 cm travel range. There are 5 available speeds, and changing speeds is done by opening up the top cover and moving the drive belt up or down to different levels on the drive pulleys.

Drill press speed adjustment
Drill press speed adjustment

The drill press is a lot quieter than I expected, and works really well. The drive belt seems to be in pretty good shape without any obvious cracks or flaws in it. The work platform is smallish, but should be adequate for the projects that I have in mind. The 1/2″ chuck is plenty large enough to handle the bits that I have.

Quite pleased with this acquisition for the workbench. Now I’ll be able to up my building game a bit.

Another Nest bites the dust

While I was playing in the South Carolina QSO party yesterday, I discovered my Nest thermostat decided to flake out and turn the AC on, even though it was saying the AC was off.

It’s not the first time I’ve had a Nest fail on me  before (technically, just the base of the Nest).

No idea if it just happened to be a coincidence, or if it got zapped by some RF while I was playing on the radio. Also a little puzzled as to why the Nest base failed this time and not the other times I’ve been on the radio.

A search of the internet brings up a few forum and email threads that suggest the Nest thermostat base might be susceptible to RFI, probably via RF coupling through the control cable between the thermostat and the HVAC unit.

At the old house, I think the antenna was far enough away that it was never a problem. Here, with the antenna pretty much on top of the roof, RFI into the thermostat via the wiring is a definite possibility.


Guess now I need to see if I can add a bunch of ferrites to the wiring.

Charleston Eats: Lotus Vietnamese Cuisine

Pho Bo from Lotus Vietnamese Cuisine in Park Circle.

Pho Bo
Pho Bo

A nice beef broth with rice noodles and thin slices of sirloin. Could have  used some more noodles though.

If it wasn’t for the cilantro in the broth, it would have been excellent. Those of you who actually enjoy the taste of cilantro would probably like this a lot.

In today’s church bulletin