06 February 2011

My life seems to have no control anymore...

Work is busy busy busy and yet when I get home more Time Capsules arrive.
I am really beginning to wonder why Apple let the obvious flaw persist? One would think they have noticed by now that this is perhaps not the most reliable of products? When it works well it is as slick a piece of elegant design to ever fall from the drawing board of Jon Ive. When it fails however, it is a stinker...

Who in hell signed it off to production? (Oh oh, I feel a rant coming on...) Calm down... there are so many TCs out there that have NOT failed yet. I will be fixing and modifying for years to come.
What would happen if I actually worked out how to get my name in the Google headlights of a search for ‘Time Capsule Failure’? I wonder if it’s worth all the hassle.

There are many things to do... for a start have an early-ish night, that would help.
My parents are round tomorrow, as it will be Mum’s birthday at the weekend - 86 I think? Tidy their bedroom, which is like a building site, having had some building work done in it - well triple glazing of a marvellous but destructive kind. The windows and frames look great, but the cavernous holes and cracked walls left when they were fitted and the complete lack of window sills make for a messy house.
I needs a new garage in a piece of this vast garden wilderness, where I can recreate my office and have an ‘attic’ to store away long term stuff, like suitcases and boxes of ‘bits’. This bungalow has almost no attic worthy of the name and nothing that could be useful, unless you are 24” tall and like walking on slopes.

The kit arrived yesterday. i plugged it into the PC (work laptop) USB port and watched as random lights flashed. They are supposed to be in a sequence, which I can reverse with a small button and speed up and slow down the flashing ‘sequence’ with a small pot. Neither button nor pot did a thing and after 2 hours of fruitless tinkering, I packed it all away again, to be messed about with later. This is the first step towards a silent modification to a TC fan. A disappointing start.

What a dull blog. I must get some zing and spice into it. But that will be later... off to Zanzibar zzzzzzzzzzzzz

I think a blog is in order... so much is going on.

So, my very first ‘Eutechnics’ blog.

The service I have been providing for more than a year now has grown out of all expectation. I was only helping the poor souls that did not know how to repair Time Capsules and I’ve almost lost count of the number I’ve fixed and modified but it’s climbing to silly figures like about 90 or so. Any money I have made has all been ploughed back into the ‘business’ to buy more bits, packing material, ink-cartridges for the printer, etc. Recently a good ‘job lot’ of Nichicon capacitors at 105C spec and very low ESR to fix the power supply units that land on my door mat.

I have had a few chats with Jim F in Holland about a TC I sold to him a while ago (2TB modified - in need of a good home). He was going to make the cooling fan quiet come hell or high-water, so pulled my creation apart with his bare hands (and a small crosshead screwdriver). His experimentation was both exemplary and persistent. He achieved a degree of success, messing about with different fans, voltage dropper circuits, MOSFET switches and slowly charging capacitors. His conversion seemed to work well, it certainly made the fan run slower and the noise disappear into the background.

It got me thinking... I really need to do a proper job on this fan drive (not that Jim’s job was not ‘proper’) and I needed a one chip solution, if possible.

I have chosen the pathway of the microchip. A prototype development board is on its way and a couple of DIL devices to play with. Nice :-)
Playing with circuitry on the bench has not been done for many a year - I need this challenge.

My life at present is turmoil of a self-inflicted kind. Fiona and I have moved into her parents old bungalow, with the intention of rebuilding it to a high spec, low energy, green-ish home.
Why let a mid-life crisis overtake you? Take on a project like this and drive yourself mad, its much easier! Not a few things are wrong with the house... EVERYTHING is wrong with the place.

In between putting in triple glazing, a ground sourced heat pump, underfloor heating (water pipes), a wood-burning stove. I will also be building a new 3 bay garage with office/workshop over, trying to fix the rattling ruin of a ride-on lawnmower to cut the grass of near 0.5 acre of lawn, as well as extend the house for a new kitchen. Oh yes and work at my day job of selling energy management systems and walking the dog. I also fix and modify TIME CAPSULES. Happy days.