30 September 2013

Last Day Begins

2013 KTKC wraps up today and I've done better this year than I have done in the previous two years combined!

I feel like I, no WE, deserve some sort of "most improved" award; I made my stated goal for the first time and having met that goal, surpassed it by more than the entire donation from last year.  We got $45 the first year, $250 last year and so far (still time to donate!) $775 this year.

Truly, everyone who contributed rocks!

Shut It Down

Shut it down.

Shut it all down.

Time to let the Free Shit Army get screwed over...

But wait, they won't.

Congress doesn't pass anything for the entitlement checks to be written.  This is about cutting discretionary funds.

This only hurts people who pay taxes or are paying for a government service.  Like wanting NFA paperwork to go through.  Like wanting to vacation in one of our OUR national parks.

The people "laid off" by a shut down will be unaffected since the resumption of .gov always includes their back pay.


Everyone being all happy that the republicans have screwed themselves about this...  If they find a spine and stick to it long enough; people might just notice that they're getting by just fine without all of the "non-essential" government that was shut down.  When they notice that, you're going to have a lot of trouble convincing them they want government started back up.

29 September 2013

Gun Show Meh

I was so excited about the gun show at the county fairgrounds I couldn't even muster the energy to get dressed.

I'm not in a buying mood, so it would have been like reading a book in a whorehouse.


October first marks the day when, traditionally, Florida Corvette owners with the dual top option can place the solid top in storage and put the clear top on the car because the temperatures will have dropped enough that the sun will not kill you.

27 September 2013

Not Synonymous

Affirmation of one thing is not automatically defamation of another, even if they are diametrically opposed.

Common Refrain

Very commonly I appear to be expected to help people out with things I have no interest in.

Just as commonly when I learn about the thing I am not interested in I find the person I am supposed to be helping doesn't really want my damn help; they want to climb up on their cross in righteous indignation about how they've been screwed over by the vendor/manufacturer.

Have fun up there, wave at Jeebus!

Of note is the fact that prior to being asked if I will help, I had no knowledge of the thing at hand.  Presumably you obtained the product because of your interest.  Why then did I discover the product you selected is not what you wanted when you're the one who's supposed to know about this stuff?

Related.  It is not my fault that the free/cheap product doesn't work.  It is not my fault that their customer support is worthless.  It is not my fault that the product/service that will readily perform the task you wish performed is "too expensive".  It is not my fault if a given product has prerequisites that you don't meet.

In short it's a problem of your making and I have been burned too many times trying to help.

I refuse to own the problem once I have helped because you didn't understand my explanation.  I refuse to own the problem because I did not say what you wanted to hear.  I most especially will not take the blame if you don't take my advice or follow my instructions!

It's too the point with some topics and some people that they get a brusque response.  "Why doesn't this work?"  Based on past experience, because you're using it.

Am I talking about you?

It sure is a sunny day today.

KTKC Is A Bit Short

Despite getting my personal best ever level of donations, the charity drive this year is far short of its overall goals.

AD wants to hit $10k and it's hovering at about $1,500 below that.

Could you see your way fit to donate a little more to help this along?

Two $25 donations would be about perfect!


Got a $5 LED flashlight from ebay.  It uses a 14500 3.7v rechargeable li-ion battery and is 7w powerful.

It's easily as bright as a similar form factor Surefire which retails for $220.

The Surefire is easily much tougher than the no-name Cree Q5 light.  Definitely more waterproof.

But is a Surefire better than a $5 flashlight?  Especially since it's the price of 44 $5 lights!

The ebay light is waterproof enough to survive in the rain, which is what I need it to survive.  I don't need a dive-light to keep in my glove box.

One thing you can do with a $5 light is slam it down on the asphalt as hard as you can, shattering the poor thing to bits and go, "oh well, I need a new light."  As opposed to not daring to do the same thing with your $220 light where if you do break it you go, "oh FUCK!  My expensive light is ruined!"

I have seen this demonstrated.  The person who put me onto the cheapo light is more than willing to break one.  The owner of the $220 Surefire declined to emulate the destructive testing regimen.

The light thing reminds me of so many "tactical" things.

$300 for a pair dockers?  Are you fucking high?  Yet people buy them and extoll their virtues and they cannot be told from the $15 Wal Mart captive store brand at 15 feet.  You paid 20x as much for a pair of pants!  Even worse is you didn't even avoid them being made in China.  I've been known to pay a premium for American made goods, but your extra $285 doesn't get that.

Will your $300 pair of slacks outlast a $15 pair?  Most assuredly.  Will it outlast twenty pairs of $15 slacks?  Probably not.

The next question about pants is really one of style.  There are places I would not wear dockers.  Dockers are associated with dress-code in my mind; you wear them because you must look a certain way and the environments where this is true preclude a necessity for requisite level of ruggedity.

What do I wear for rugged use?  Jeans.  Good old fashioned denim.  $10-30 at Wal-Mart, $20-50 at Target.  Considering it was expansion of my waist and not wear that retired the last ten pairs of jeans, I'd be really mad if I'd spent more than $25 on them.

I admit that I am forgoing secret pockets for my carry gun, but I don't need them and certainly don't think they're worth an extra $250 over the expensive "high falootin'" Target brand.

Am I being cheap?  You're darn tootin'!  I am also being frugal and pragmatic.  I am being honest about my needs and the demands I put my stuff to.

I will certainly spend more money to get better quality where there's a benefit to me for doing so.  You may notice in a couple of pics that I have genuine Chuck Taylor All-Stars for sneakers.  Because of my particular orthopedic problems, normal tennies are painful and wear out in six months.  I get a couple of years from a pair of Chuck's and without the pain.  $60 for two years or $20 four times?

26 September 2013

Dealer Accounts

Mailed off a copy of my C&R to Midway today.

I hear tell Brownells has a similar deal, but their web page is obtuse about how to go about it.

AIM Surplus' upload an image deal is a fail too works once you don't try to force feed it the gigantic jpg your scanner defaults to.

Century Arms' online registration demands that I format my FFL number exactly as I entered it but still declines.

Gentlemen Mind The Felt

It's toss away lines like that which make me enjoy Deadwood.

25 September 2013

Yes Daddy

Dottie, Kaylee and the shotgun are now alike.

They have sling mounts for the Magpul MSA3 1-QD sling.

They have a bit-o-rail for my light.

Now when I fumble in the dark I only have to remember how one sling works and how one light works.

Magpul is very much the Apple of the firearms world.  Rabid followers and a tendency to have a single name for endless revisions of the same name.

Today's case in point is the "Sling Mount Kit".  Originally just an item for the ACS stock.  Now there are three different Sling Mount Kits, imaginatively termed Type 1, Type 2 and Type 3.  Guess which one the original is now...  That's right! the original Sling Mount Kit for the ACS is now the Type 3!


Midway is unaware there's more than one kind, so I got the type 3 with my order.

Brownells knows there's a type 1 and 2, but doesn't seem to know about the type 3.  I should have ordered from them, but they didn't have the MOE sling mount I needed for Kaylee.  I wasn't about to pay shipping twice!

To get your Type 3 kit to work in your SGA stock, cut the supplied screw in half and discard the provided nut.  Install like you would the Type 1.

24 September 2013

Gotta Love It

In Strike Fighters 2: Vietnam there are three campaigns, all historical.

Rolling Thunder, Linebacker I and Linebacker II.

Rolling Thunder is the longest one since it covers from 1965 thru 1968.

Actually, it's not all that historical.  The mission and target selection is a lot more like "lessons learned" from Vietnam and applied to Vietnam than how it really was.  Still, it's fun.

What happens when you apply modern tactics to this war is the historically accurate number of targets dwindle to nothing very quickly.  Imagine applying Desert Storm to Rolling Thunder.  Imagine that the lessons of TOPGUN and Red Flag had been taught and absorbed long before President Kennedy sent in advisors let alone air power.

That is how this game progresses for me.  Because I studied these lessons and can apply them.

Technological developments still happen according to the historical calendar.  If the AIM-9E doesn't make it to the unit you're playing until 1967, you have to make do with the AIM-9B until then.  It's not so bad, really.  Using modern tactics and rules of engagement allow you to actually employ the AIM-7E effectively and you just don't leave home without your SUU-23 gun pod (although it really should be an SUU-16 which is similar but powered differently but isn't included in the game).

At any rate by the time I get access to the improved AIM-9E I am all out of MiGs!  It's just not fair!

If you look close you can see those are AIM-9E under the wings.

Traveller Two Day

I have two things on my plate for Traveller.

I am writing a brief, "how to think like a Hiver" piece for Erin.  It's proving to be rewarding and frustrating.  Should be done with what I want to say sometime today and have it be readable by next week.  Some input from Fuzzygeff would be welcome since he's played one a lot more than I have.

This project also has me thinking of making a K'Kree character just to see if I could manage to make one that I'd be willing to actually play.  I think that's going to be a lot harder than the Hiver!

Moving Parts

When describing the look and feel of the Traveller universe, the ships in particular, I fall back on what I know.

Planes and ships.

Aircraft do not have an engine room.  Modern aircraft don't even have an engineer anymore.  Damn computers anyway!

Ships have engine rooms and engineers.

The bridge of my Traveller ships tend to be more like a cockpit, and everyone accepts this because spaceships have an affinity to airplanes.

But what does the engineering space look like?

Not many of us have spent any time in a genuine ship's engine room.

What got me thinking HARD on the topic was Galaxy Quest and the chompers.  It was reinforced by the depiction in the newer Battlestar Galactica of the jump drive with huge piston things slamming back and forth.

I've spent a teeny amount of time in an engine room of a ship underway.

Nothing moves except the shaft.  Things vibrate, make noise, get hot but they don't move.  Moving parts are under covers where you can't see them.


Cynical people might say OSHA.  The real answer is up on the bridge.  There's an inclinometer there.  It's super simple, it's a ball in a curved glass tube; marked in degrees, that tells how far the ship is rolling.  On a simple WW2 freighter that thing is marked to 60˚!

What happens below decks in the engine room when the ship unexpectedly rolls even 20˚?  It's not like you can see the wave coming while you're down in the bowels of the ship.  You'll stumble around like a drunk is what you'll do and you'll be grabbing onto and bracing against everything you can.  Thus, everything that moves is covered!  It's embarrassing to catch yourself on something that's going to grab your hands and pull you into it to be mangled into a bloody pulp!

As for looks?

I see a maze of piping for running coolant and fuel around (Traveller uses liquid hydrogen for fuel so it can also be coolant).  I see conduits for some serious power transmission lines because the maneuver drive is reactionless and fed right from the power plant in GURPS terms.  I see an acceleration seat and a terminal for the engineer.  I see a giant tool box with a work bench and mill, because you're on your own in deep space for anything what breaks.

Other details.  The hydrogen lines are marked.  In the GURPS Traveller universe the only thing that needs the fuel is the jump drive.  The jump engine includes a cryogenic plant that circulates the fuel and keeps it cold.  So there's a set of lines that go from the cryo plant to and from the fuel bunkers.  Since the H2 is handy, there a set of lines that runs from the bunker to the jump drive to cool it and then from the drive to the cryo plant then back to the bunker.  Then there's the fuel feed itself which leads from the bunker to the drive where it's consumed and leaves the ship.  There are also transfer lines between bunkers, feed pumps, transfer pumps and valves everywhere.

The life support system has water tankage and lines for potable, non-potable and waste water.  With their associated valves and pumps.

There are tanks and bottles of all the various gasses and fluids used by the drives and life support system.

Everything is labelled and color coded.

The valves have a motor for remote operation and a wheel for manual use.

It is well lit.

There are railings and grab bars all over the place and it's one of the few spaces that's designed with the assumption that there will be no gravity and people must still move around.  There are also ladders which are useless when the ship is operating normally, but are essential to move forward under thrust without the grav compensation gear running (the bow is "up" under thrust).

Places where you'd hit your head are padded.

But nothing is flinging back and forth like a steam engine power arm!

23 September 2013


Or getting the damn sidewinder to do something besides make pretty smoke trails.

The AIM-9B was commissioned by the US Navy and adopted by the US Air Force to arm its fighters and interceptors to attack bombers.

Theses were the perceived threats of the day and fighters had guns to deal with other fighters, just like WW1, WW2 and Korea.

The problem begins some time after Korea when speed becomes ever more important in the design and an attitude that ACM (air combat maneuvering) or dogfighting will be supplanted by missiles and this whole thing will culminate with unmanned aircraft anyways so why make traditional fighters?

Yeah, about that.  It seems the Soviets didn't get the memo.  They kept making traditional fighters.

We didn't worry much about it since we really didn't expect to meet those short ranged things while defending ourselves agains the looming bomber threat.

Then there was Vietnam.  There our optimized for an entirely different role and theater planes met aircraft being used precisely in the role they were intended and designed for.


A side note about one fighter we sent to Vietnam that got a bad shake.  The F-104C didn't get much air-to-air time.  It seems (now) that the Soviets had fully compromised our defense industry and had very accurate performance numbers on the Starfighter and they apparently told the NVAF to avoid them.  It's an unsubstantiated claim from a normally solid author.  Update: Found my notes, but not my references.  Project Feather Duster was a study on dissimilar ACM with all of the various planes the USAF could muster.  It showed that the F-104 was nigh unbeatable in ACM, despite the relatively short range and small weapons carriage.  IIRC the author in question named names about whom got hold of the Feather Duster report and how it got into Soviet hands.

At any rate cones.

The seeker looks forward in a cone that gets wider to the front of the missile.  Because of limited sensitivity, it can't see things that are colder than a certain temperature.  This means that it needs to see the tail pipe of the target directly.  This projects behind the target aircraft in a cone widening to its rear.

With the AIM-9B this is a 4˚ cone looking forward.  This cone must be inside an approximately 60˚ cone behind the target for the seeker to begin tracking.  The good news is the seeker is gimbaled so that it can point the center of the 4˚ cone 12.5˚ off the centerline of the missile.  The bad news is that this is still a very narrow cone!  Even worse that 12.5˚ is constrained by a 11˚ per second tracking rate.  So if a target can get out of the 4˚ cone faster than the head can slew, then missile loses lock and he escapes even it it's still inside the nominal 25˚ cone of the gimbaled head.

The missile also turns, adding its turn rate to the speed of the tracking head.  Because the missile is going much faster than the target, it needs to turn at a much higher g to follow.

In fighter terms this is a 3g break to get out of that cone and get away.  A Cessna can perform such maneuvers!  (A Cessna wouldn't need to since its internal combustion engine isn't hot enough for an AIM-9B to see).

How do you score kills with an AIM-9B?

Option A: fight like Baron Richthofen.  Sneak up behind him while he's not looking and shoot him before he realizes your shooting.  The AIM-9B is excellent if the target is not wagging its ass around.

Option B: because if they know you're there they don't sit still for it you get him into a situation where he can't put 3g on the plane anymore and has to helplessly look over his shoulder as the missile relentlessly bores in on his fragile pink body.  That is all about airspeed.

And this is why you don't wanna be in an F-4B or C over Vietnam and armed with AIM-9B.  By the time the fight slows down to the point where a MiG-17F can't pull 3g, you can't keep your nose on him and thus can't get the initial lock, assuming you don't stall or depart for trying to maneuver at such low speeds.  But there's another airspeed where a MiG-17 can't pull 3g!  Above a certain speed (500 kias or so) the Fresco's controls get too heavy for the muscles of the pilot to deflect the control surfaces enough to pull serious g!  The bad news about this is that it takes serious work to get 500+ knots on in a dogfight and remember what we said before, "don't fight how your enemy fights!"  High speed fights are where the Phantom wants to be, so don't go fast!

And they didn't.

We never did come up with effective tactics to employ the AIM-9B against fighters.  The Navy had a Come-To-Jeebus moment and founded TOPGUN to teach some ACM tactics to its interceptor thinking aviators, but another change preceded those students entering the fight: this was a new version of the Sidewinder; the AIM-9D.

The Navy looked at the problem and came away with the notion that the missile just wasn't intended to do what they were trying to use it for.  A smaller group in the fighter community also acknowledged that they didn't really know what they were doing either.  This led to a two prong attack on the problem with improved missiles reaching the fleet first.

The D model 'Winder has a greatly improved seeker head.  At first glance it doesn't seem much better.  The field of view is reduced to 2.5˚.  The limit is extended to 15˚ off center and the tracking rate is just a bit better at 12˚ per second.  Sounds like it's just as easy to defeat as the B model, huh?  It probably would be, except that it can see the target pretty much as long as it can see the back of the plane at all.  It took 4-5g to escape which was still readily available to most MiGs, the fight could be dragged to a point where a Phantom could still fly and the MiG didn't have enough energy to get it's rear arc out of the seeker's view.  Additionally the increased sensitivity of the new head also allowed it to be fired from farther away, more than three times as far!  The biggest improvement from a firing point of view was increasing the maximum launch g from 2 to 4g and the missile was also able to turn harder increasing from 14 to 24g.  The AIM-9D was a lot more effective than the AIM-9B.

Plus, by the time that TOPGUN was bearing fruit, a further improved Sidewinder was reaching the fleet.  The AIM-9G.  What the AIM-9G had that the D didn't was SEAM (Sidewinder Enhanced Acquisition Mode), this slaved the seeker head to the firing aircraft's radar and got it to begin tracking farther from "boresight".  Better tactics, better missiles, better kill ratios!

Something else worth mentioning, the D and G were also more reliable as solid state electronics replaced tube and both benefitted from a more than doubled warhead with improved fragmentation performance.  It's all win!

One would think that the Air Force would have been paying attention to what the Navy was up to and implementing a similar plan, right?

Not really.

It took them a lot longer to realize that no amount of improved procedure was going to change the reality of the cone situation.  Then, rather than adopt the Navy's improved missile, they opted for a new version of their own.  This is the AIM-9E.  Like the D, the seeker was made more sensitive and the FoV was reduced to 2.5˚; but the limit was increased to 20˚ off center and the tracking rate was cranked up to 16.5˚/sec.  The range where you could get a lock was almost doubled and the motor burned longer giving a much longer range than the B.  The E wasn't as maneuverable as the D and was more limited in its launch conditions though.  2.5g max launch g and it only pulled 18g following the target.  It was still a vast improvement and kill ratios did get better, but not as much as the Navy so the Air Force grudgingly emulated their sister service.

Still, it's all about cones and making the cones bigger makes it easier to hit.

Two Things

First, John Norman is still alive.

Second, he's still cranking out Gor novels?

Holy Hanna!

I thought those all must have been spawned in the '70's and died with disco.

I never actually read one, but I had a friend who enjoyed them a lot.

It makes me so very sad to know he didn't live to see the end of one of his favorite series of novels.

22 September 2013


I've decided to add a light to the side of the house.

Marv, being an electrical engineer, told me how.  I said to him, "I can tell you think you've explained how; but you didn't really."

His retort:

21 September 2013

Magpul Whore


My name is Angus McThag and I am a Magpul whore.

It started so easy.  First a pistol grip.  Then a stock...

Suddenly there are several guns replete in Magpul accessories.

Stock, grip, handguard, QD mounts, sling loops, add-rails and even slings!

At first I told myself that I could quit whenever I wanted, but now I know the truth.

I am Magpul's bitch.

The truth is, I am not sure I should stop or even want to.

It's Official

My Curio and Relic FFL showed up today!

Like a dog with a bumper in their mouth, I have no idea what to do now.

Do I make copies?

Dare I head for the Lakeland Gun Show?

20 September 2013

A Little More Each Day

Officer safety has officially jumped the shark.

You now have to roll your window down all the way for them to pass you a ticket?

For "officer safety".


I tested this one at home.

A ticket is a piece of paper, it's about 0.005" thick for the excellent paper I have and the paper that ticket is printed on is MUCH thinner.

Guess how far the window needs to be opened to pass a piece of paper?

Not very damn far.

Guess how much my hand has to get twixt the glass and the jamb to get that ticket inside the car?


Dropping the window couple of inches allows communication and is more than enough to pass notes to your new BFF Officer Friendly.  Even if it's attached to the adorable little clipboard.

Here's another jaw-dropper for you Officer.  You work for the community and when a member of the community asks why you're demanding they do something, you have to answer.  Be polite.  If there's no law requiring that a citizen follow your command, guess what!  The citizen doesn't have to obey no matter how that makes you feel.

Why are the citizens hostile to you?  In brief it's because you don't seem to be doing anything but cracking down hard on chickenshit fines with an eye to escalating the situation to an equally chickenshit arrest when a citizen is trying to figure out what crawled up your ass today.

A citizen in a free society has every right to demand why you are commanding them to do something and be answered.  Or is it your considered opinion that this isn't a free society?


Again, just because we shattered my goal doesn't mean you should not make a donation or even not give a second time.

It's a worthy cause.

If you need a baser motivation:  Just think of what JayG and the other big dogs saying, "WHO?" if I snagged a top-three spot!


It doesn't cost much to hang out your internet shingle and start doing testing and evaluation.

It takes a great deal of work to establish yourself as knowledgable and thorough.

It takes an instant to destroy all of that and introduce doubt.

Read this.  Be sure to check WHY he's not using or testing Frog Lube.

On one hand, I understand.  With my misophonia, Kit Kat's ads with all the crunching bug the snot out of me, and I avoid buying them because of this.

But I have not established myself as an impartial and thorough reviewer of candy bars whose opinion on their flavor matters.

Mr Touhy has his own blog and he's a contributor to The Firearm Blog.  He's done some interesting work and now I wonder if I can trust his recommendations because I see that he can be made to avoid a product with mere bright colors and shallow ad copy.  The doubt that is introduced is "what else is he not mentioning?"

All I want to know from an overview of gun lubricants is "does the product work?"

He mentioned the product in his article then engaged his inner five year old with monosyllabic replies for a while.  Dude, you brought it up!

I know that my little post will not be widely read or heeded.  Remember how much contempt we have regarding the influence of advertisers in the dead-tree gun press?  This is the opposite side of that coin.

Gell-Mann amnesia will kick in even if you do read this.

19 September 2013

Arrrrrrr Me Heartys!

Fifteen Men on a dead man's chest. Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the devil had done for the rest
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.
the mate was fixed by the sosun's pike
The bosun brained with a marlinspike
And cookey's throat was marked belike
It had been gripped by fingrs ten;
And there they lay, all good dead men
Like break o'day in a boozing ken, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

Fifteen men of the whole ship's list, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
Dead and be damned and the rest gone whist!
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
The skipper lay with his nob in gore
Where the scullion's axe his cheek had shore
And the scullion he was stabbed times four
And there they lay, and the soggy skies
Dripped down in up-staring eyes
In murk sunset and foul sunrise, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum

Fifteen men of 'em stiff and stark, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
Ten of the crew had the murder mark! Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
'Twas a cutlass swipe or an ounce of lead
Or a oawing hole in a battered head
And the scuppers' glut with a rotting red
And there they lay, aye, d@mn my eyes
Looking up at paradise
All souls bound just contrawise, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

Fifteen men of 'em good and true, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
Ev'ry man jack could ha' sailed with Old Pew,
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
There was chest on chest of Spanish gold
With a ton of plate in the middle hold
And the cabins riot of stuff untold,
And they lay there that took the plum
With sightless glare and their lips struck dumb
While we shared all by the rule of thumb,
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

More was seen through a sternlight screen...
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
Chartings undoubt where a woman had been
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum
'Twas a flimsy shift on a bunker cot
With a dirk slit sheer through the bosom spot
And the lace stiff dry in a purplish blot
Oh was she wench or some shudderin' maid
That dared the knife and took the blade
By God! she had stuff for a plucky jade, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.

Fifteen men on a dead man's chest, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the devil had done for the rest
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
We wrapped 'em all in a mains'l tight
With twice ten turns of a hawser's bight
And we heaved 'em over and out of sight
With a Yo-Heave-Ho! and a fare-you-well
And a sudden plunge in the sullen swell
Ten fathoms deep on the road to hell, Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

18 September 2013


Since I did the Starbucks appreciation thing...

The last appreciation day I mentioned to The Wife that Starbucks is something of an innocent bystander in this fight and I was buying a cup of coffee to thank them for staying out of the fight.

Also, as Jennifer reminds me, to offset the supposed boycotts from the anti-gun side.

For whatever reason their CEO has asked gun owners to leave the guns elsewhere.  The tone from gunbloggers is, "OK, since the gun comes with me, then no me at your store."

Mr Schultz, what you've created is a gun free zone.  You very publicly announced it to the world.

You might notice that those mass shootings happen where guns are banned and never seem to happen where open carry advocates are "making people uncomfortable."

Oh Boy

I've agreed to do something and I might have bit off more than I can chew.

First, the relevant synapses are corroded and covered in dust.

Second.  The alien in question has senses I do not and I have senses it doesn't.

Yet I must still crawl into its brain case and give its perspective.

17 September 2013


I don' know you, but a $250 donation is stunning!

You rock, whomever you are!

Special Election

Today is the day I am supposed to go vote for one of three potential candidates in a special primary.

The guy who actually lives in the district primaried the candidate who just vacated the position and lost last election.  He's barely got signs out and no mailers.

The other two guys did not live in the district they purport to want to represent when the slot became vacant.  We just had a redistricting, so that could account for it.  If they get the nomination they have to move before the actual election in October.

One of these guys has been a mailing fool.  I could heat my house with all the flyers.  The NRA likes him.  Well, the NRA likes Harry Reid too.

He's good buddies with our sheriff, and I am not sure I am happy about that.

For the first time since I've been old enough to vote I sit here and think, "why bother?"

16 September 2013

Not What I Expect

On a whim I bought me some Frog Lube CLP.

It smells like those pink wintergreen mints our parents and grandparents kept around the house.  I did not expect that.

On the whole, being a hidebound shooter, I am happy with Shooter's Choice for a solvent and LSA for lubricant.

I have a visceral hatred of Break-Free CLP because it was the worst "solvent" I've ever used.  We had white glove weapons inspection and CLP didn't work on the carbon fast enough to get it all when we were cleaning after coming back from the range.  The light coat we left on the weapons kept right on working on that carbon until a week later, during inspection, it came off on the probing finger of the inspecting officer.

Couple that with issue cleaning gear...  It's amazing that we ever got anything clean.

Now that I am older and wiser I know that my unit wanted the guns cleaned well past the point where it was wise.  Some residue doesn't hurt anything.

So, overcoming my skepticism about all-in-one solvent and lubricants, I've bought a bottle of the minty fresh amphibian juice.

Out the gate we have a problem.

Worst.  Bottle.  Evah.

I want the drip to go where I aim it, not cling to the side of the cap and run down the bottle.

I will be transferring it to a different bottle as soon as I remember where I put the bag of 20 I had...

Maneuver Monday

"Use The Vertical"

What the hell does that mean?

It's simple and complicated.

Fighters are talked about in terms of how many g they can pull.

At a given speed, a given g load will make a given circle.  The math is out there should you wish to hurt your brain.

So if I rolled 90˚ and pulled on the stick I would make an arc defined by my speed and g-load.

The vertical is adding the earth's 1g to your maneuver (again calculus to explain).

What the stupid books on the topic don't tell you is how much.

What I had been doing is trying to loop, that's a way to kill off a lot of precious airspeed going up and can be deadly going down if you're too low.

You actually get a lot of benefit from rolling the wings to about 75˚.

If you were looking down on the maneuver, it would look more like an ellipse and the plane doing the maneuver has changed heading faster than if it had performed a purely horizontal turn.  It also tends to complete the turn with more airspeed remaining.

All of this is so very important with the Strike Fighters era jets.  The most maneuverable planes have the worst thrust to weight ratios.  The powerful later jets have angle of attack issues that keep them from pulling enough g to keep on the tail of the smaller, lighter MiGs.

Of course in an F-4C being right on the tail of a MiG-17F does you not one bit of good in 1965.  You don't have a gun and your AIM-9B sidewinders are simply an expensive device for making an irritating noise in your headset or pretty smoke trails in the sky.  They are nearly useless as weapons against a fighter.

Since the game makes the AIM-7E sparrow better than in real life because it omits it's alarming tendency to just not work when launched (did you know that tube electronics don't LIKE to be treated like a missile is by the ground crew?).  So what the Phantom does is to use the vertical to get a good escape angle on the Fresco, firewall the burners, put some distance on then come back for a radar lock and sparrow kill.


I had the nastiest most vicious post I'd ever conceived lined up and ready to post.

I did not.

It was unfair, petty and small.

The world is better place because I deleted the draft.


As they say during futbol games.

I've made my $500 goal for the first time!

Happy Dance!

Thanks to everyone who contributed!

To everyone who hasn't, but was waiting for payday or something similar, there's no reason to not contribute past the goal; it is a worthy cause.

I didn't set a stretch goal for this moment, I despaired of making it, but I will put my mind to it and see if I can come up with a photo or something to commemorate it properly.


15 September 2013


We are spitting distance from breaking $400 for KTKC.

At the moment of post, $375 and in fifth place for totals.

That is a mere FIVE $25 donations from my goal; and it would be the first time I'd ever made my goal.

This is also the best my part has ever been, you guys rock!  This is $125 more than I managed to convince people to donate last year and your generosity was staggering then.

Especially since I offer no enticements or bribes!  Just the warm fuzzy feeling that you've materially contributed.

Word Of The Day

Deiphobe.  Someone who claims they are an atheist but is really just opposed to any belief in a higher power anywhere.

Often accompanied with cowardice as they will generally only confront religious persons who will not physically attack them for their lack of faith.

h/t Chaplain Tim

14 September 2013


Yesterday I said the NRA doesn't care.

Honestly, because they are membership driven, they don't care because YOU don't care.

Just like they didn't care about assault weapons once upon a time.

The main problem here is so many people have gotten the impression that once something is illegal and the bureaucracy is in place that it can never be changed.

Well, if none of us clamor for change, then our gorilla will never beat on the congress critters.

There's entirely too much, "well that doesn't affect me" with gun owners.

Not all that long ago we were all crowing about how we'd won.

Not really.

We'd stopped the anti-gun advance, but not reversed it.

We'd done nothing to prevent a hostile executive from banning by fiat or punishing regulation.  Bush, Clinton, Bush and Obama have all added to the anti-gun EO list.

Why is 922r still law?  Really, a law that bans the making of a gun that's made from imported parts that is otherwise identical to a gun that is made from domestic parts?  Then ban some of those parts from importation by EO?

The question I have about so many regulations is: "how does this enforce the law?"

Congress should be interested too.  But they aren't.

Congress would be interested, but we aren't.  Are we?

New Shooter!

By buddy JT took his SIG P232 to the range today.

He's doing great!



Today is the day the Jews have split, preserved herring for breakfast and say, "yum!"


It's not "Yum, Kippers"?


Well happy Yom Kippur to y'all anyways!

13 September 2013


Back when I was a psych student...

We were covering the stages of sexual arousal.







Of course we phrased it a lot more crudely.

The teacher started it though! (Wow that sounds mature, don't it?)

The prof was talking about the hypothalamus and how it controlled the four F's of the human body.

Feeding, fleeing, fighting and reproduction.


I have asserted that the NRA doesn't give a shit about NFA items.

I now have proof.

I heard about the upcoming rule change proposal, not from the NRA but from bloggers.

I know the comment period started because of bloggers.

In the, no exaggeration, four emails a day I get from the NRA not a peep has been uttered about these proposed changes nor any guidance offered.

It's all guns and any guns they are trying to ban!  NFA are guns too.

If the NRA spent half the time and effort to fight this rule change as they have to entice me to enroll in Life-Lock, buy insurance or join their wine club; we'd have the Hughes Amendment repealed and a NICS check on our $2 transfer tax after filling out one simple form and waiting about ten minutes.

Comments Are Open

Give 'em an ear full about the stupidity of adding the CLEO to trusts!

Comment Section

What I said:

Simply put the chief law enforcement officer's involvement in the process has been obsolete since the implementation of national records for felons.  The approval of the local police should be eliminated, not expanded.

The law being implemented by this regulation is quite simple and is not served by the uneven denial of a single person in the jurisdiction of the applicant.  Arbitrary and random refusals to simply sign a form by the CLEO has created a the need for people who would normally proceed with an individual transfer to create a trust to bypass a capricious local official.  There is no requirement in the law that such a person should be allowed to insert themselves into the dealings of a law abiding citizen and their federal government.  Implicit in the requirement is an assumption that the applicant is somehow guilty or unworthy to own an NFA item unless an implacable and often distant "local" official proves them innocent with the stroke of a pen.  A stroke that may be withheld for any and no reason.

The assertion that trusts might allow a felon to possess a NFA firearm is ridiculous on its face and in detail.  Especially in the light that not a single registered weapon has actually been found with a felon as a trustee.  It's literally not a problem.  Completely overlooked are a myriad of innocuous and legitimate reasons why an NFA item would be owned by a trust that have no intent to bypass the law in any way.

The proposed rule changes address a problem that does not exist in reality and acerbates problems which are already present.  Such changes do not serve the community at large and create only injustice through the uneven application of the law.

Bad Ass

After being threatened with death an orc replies to the goblin queen...

"It sure is a sunny day today.  Forgive me, I'm not very familiar with sunshine.  In fact I'm far more familiar with pain and death than I am with sunshine.  No matter how much sunshine there is, in my experience, there's always more pain and death.  Always."

"It sure is a sunny day today."

Check out "Goblins" solid story, and the art steadily improves.

GURPS: Traveller

I am now the proud owner of (nearly) every book of the GURPS: Traveller line whether in print or pdf.

I don't have several of the supplements like the planetary surveys or the adventures; much of the time they contradict what I've made up and I don't use them anyways!

While much of it (bought over the span of 14 years!) is replacing my LBB materials, Steve Jackson Games' version did do good work expanding the knowledge base.

The best of the recent purchases by far has been Humaniti.

Of the 16 minor races of homo-sapiens depicted, I'd only heard of the Darrians, Geonee, and Syleans.  And the Geonee only because I'd recently digested Interstellar Wars.

I knew the name Azhanti from Azhanti High Lightning, but didn't know they were a minor race of humans.

I am really enjoying reading the backgrounds.  Re-hashing old familiar stomping grounds from my campaigns set in and around 1103-1110 to the "present" 1120.  Did you know that 567-908 (Spinward Marches 1031) has a name now?  Denuli!

Denuli is an oft visited world of my Traveller campaigns because I had Adventure 10, Safari Ship.  Of the many times ran, just ONCE did the players not commit genocide and/or murder their client, Kafla Thingvellir.  (Played with GURPS 4e rules with Fuzzygeff and Anglave).

I have the Planetary Survey for Denuli and it's nice to see that the future assumed a peaceful resolution to the adventure rather than the "kill the bug-eyed monsters and loot their sacred valley of the gem-like eggs; oh and shoot the boss because he's a WITNESS!"

All in all I am finding I've made peace with pdf because Apple's Preview app is far superior to Adobe's Reader for viewing them.  Heck my PHONE'S pdf viewer is better than the one they make for PC's.  That surely says something about it, huh?


The main reason I could never take the hyper-vegetarian "vegans" seriously is there's a race in the Solomani Rim that are FROM Vega!  And they are omnivores.

This, by Lord Juju, is a Vegan!
PPS: If you want it pronounced vej-an like veggies, you should have spelled it veggan.  For Gorram's sake, calling aliens from Vega, Vegans dates back to when Heinlein lived hand to mouth!

Trivia From Being A Gamer

Everyone knows what a blacksmith is, right?

How about a whitesmith or brownsmith?

Whitesmiths work with the white metals like tin, lead and pewter.

Brownsmiths work in brass and bronze (and sometimes copper).

A blacksmith does his work in iron.

Redsmiths deal in copper.

Gold and silver smiths work aptly enough in gold and silver.

12 September 2013

On Funding

There are people we don't need.

Is the house on fire?  No.  I don't need a fireman.

Has someone broken in?  No.  I don't need a policeman.

But if the house is on fire or I am locked in the back room, I damn sure need me some fire and police response!

Yet we habitually underfund these organizations to the point where they barely function doing the things we want done.

I notice that we're unquestioningly funding a large group of people we'll never need.

What's that old bumper sticker?  "It will be a great day when our schools have all the money they need and the Army has to hold a bake sale to buy a tank!"

How about:

"It will be a great day when our fire departments have all the money they need and welfare people have to work to buy ANYTHING."  I think it's especially apt because I've noticed a trend towards the people most likely being on welfare are also the largest consumers of emergency services.

Double irony, a working person who is no longer on welfare actually generates revenue!


Cancer?  This is SPARTA!

We make $400 and I'll take this pic down. ;)

Edit:  Additional Sparkiltanesque Image

NRA Endorsement

I have three republican candidates vying for the chance to run in the special election come October.

Next Tuesday is the primary for said election.

As I said before, two of the three Republican candidates did not live in the district they wish to represent when they announced they were running.

The NRA has endorsed one of the candidates that couldn't bother to live here before a chance at political power came up.

Slow clap.

Guns are very important to me, but I can't imagine someone who won't reside here without the bribe of power will represent me very well on other things.

As an atheist I'm a bit nervous about someone who's a minister running for office.  I'm pro gun, but I am also pro-titty bar (not that I can afford to go to one; I like the IDEA of titty bars)

To me the two candidates who are moving here to run are akin to Hillary moving to NY just before her senate run.

I am frustrated there is scanty information about any of the three candidates positions on most things.

11 September 2013

September Never Ended

I miss my big fish in a small pond status.

In the days of yore in the mythical land of Ioway I was the person who knew "everything" about guns.

This stemmed from two things.  First, I had been in the Army which confers "expert" on your gun opinion regardless of actual knowledge.  Second, I'd voraciously devour any book about guns I could find.

Actual paper books!  I know!

I have learned so much about so many guns since then I think I can safely say I didn't know much; but in the land of the blind the one eyed man is king!

Today the level of expertise I brought to the gaming table is readily available with Google (or Bing) and a smart phone.

Now my pond has grown and while I am no smaller, there are much larger fish out there.  In the giant pond, I am merely moderately sized (heh; I'm small enough to be thrown back).  But it was nice being an unquestioned expert for a long while.

I remembered today what set me on my path of learning guns.

TSR's Top Secret.  It had one of the most frustratingly "realistic" gun combat rules we'd ever played.  Nearly literally "get hit - get dead".  Guns were not to be trifled with.

My character had an Uzi, but I had no idea how big an Uzi was or what it looked like and I wanted to draw a picture of my character.  So Dad bought me a book.  In the pages of "Small Arms of the 20th Century" by Ian Hogg I learned that there were many guns not listed on the table in the game.  I also noticed that the game claimed the Galil was a .22 with different stats than the M16 and 5.56...  The Galil issue is the first time I managed to use my "expertise" to sway the GM.  The rules failed to properly account for the fact that a Galil ARM weighs as much as two M16A1, but it did say 35 shots as opposed to 20; with the ruling from the GM the Galil was a vast improvement.  8th grade gamers always go for more shots!  More shots is why there was a Browning HP on so many character sheets.

More shots is why there's a Glock 17 on a lot of my character sheets where fifteen shot wonder nines had become passé.

I don't game much any more.  My fellow gamers are 1,600 miles away and it's hard to get together at the same table.  The local scene really rams home that I'm a LOT older than the typical gamer.  I still learn something new every day, though.

The gaming thing had me digging up esoteric guns like the ZH-29 because you could get a detachable magazine-semi-auto in 1929 in a common caliber like 7x57mm in Brazil.  Thanks to Ian at Forgotten Weapons I know a lot more about it; but it's funny because he's doing reviews of obscure guns that I know about to get around some arbitrary date set to prevent player access to "better" weaponry.

Restrict me to a bolt action integral magazine rifle will you?  Oh, I can't have a gun that didn't actually see production and I can't use a military caliber?  Remington Model 8 in .30 Rem, please...


Looks like both Giron and Morse got recalled.


Keep wasting money Mike.

I Remember

I live under the approach corridor for both PIE and TPA and I remember how quiet it was without the planes.

I remember seeing an Air Force C-32A flying north.

I remember talking with my co-workers when it was still thought to be an accident and how sick we'd be of on the scene reports of how the repairs were going.  That's what we were doing when the second plane hit.

I remember getting the phone call about how the first tower fell and getting a TV set up just in time to watch the second.

I've said over and over that we are not at war with Islam; but it has most assuredly been at war with us at least since that day.  If only we'd fight back for keeps.

10 September 2013


I have to wonder if people think there's a minimum donation that's acceptable to PCF and KTKC.

There is not.

You could donate a penny.

It doesn't have the same effect on getting me towards my goal of $500 total donations, it's something.

Something is better than nothing!

Every year I do this and I think that if we'd had the money back when would Acidman still be around? Would my grandpa?  Would Marv's step-father?  Would countless others?

These donations helped pay for the experimental treatments that are helping my friend Garry (pic of him tomorrow I hope).  There's a real world right there person who's benefitted from these donations.  Without them, that treatment that helped would not have been available.

I remember him telling us, before the treatment was offered, that he'd gotten his stuff in order and was getting ready for the end.

We're thrilled that the old curmudgeon responded and is doing well.

I'm Convinced

Who Started What Now

In our marches toward (modern) war I like to remind people that the President in nearly all of them has been a Democrat.

WW1: Wilson (D) - Win
WW2: Roosevelt (D) - Win
Korea: Truman (D) - Ongoing
Vietnam: Kennedy/Johnson (D) (It's really LBJ's war) - Loss
Kuwaiti Liberation: Bush (41 R) - Win
War on Tarra: Bush (43 R) - Ongoing

I'm not counting small operations like Wilson and the Pancho Villa Expedition, Reagan and Grenada, Bush and Somalia or Clinton and Haiti.

Looks like the dems have a better winning streak going too.

In the wars prior to the 20th century though...

1812: Madison (Democratic-Republican) - Draw (Maybe win since the British didn't gain anything)
Mexican-American: Polk (D) - Win
War of Northern Aggression Civil War: Lincoln (R) - Own Goal
Spanish American War - McKinley (R) - Win

I also note that WW2 is really the only war we've fought since the Civil War where we went full court press on it.

Another thing to pay attention to is presidential elections.  Wars get boned when the White House changes parties in the middle.

Eisenhower took over from Truman, the Korean war did not really stop.

Nixon took over from LBJ; and this one is a tough one.  Vietnam was effectively won, or at least no worse off than Korea when we withdrew ground troops.  The first invasion after that was beaten back because we gave air and logistics support.  The successful invasion from the north we gave nearly no support because Congress (D controlled) denied funding for support.

Somalia deserves mention in this thought.  It didn't become a clusterfuck until Slick Willie took over.

Obama took over the War on Tarra from Bush and the wheels done come off.

The War on Tarra might not even be properly Bush's war.  There's pretty decent work that shows it's our stupid foreign policy decisions starting with Eisenhower in the Iranian coup in '53 and getting stupider as we go until today.

Dicta Boelcke

It works.  It's about one hundred years old and the fundamental truths he discovered about air combat apply as much to an F-22A as they did to a Pfaltz.

It applies to combat flight simulators.

They even work if you're in an F-105D and your opponent is in a MiG-17 Fresco A.

Coming in from behind, getting close and giving him a gentle caress of 20mm means he's walking home.

It doesn't matter how maneuverable he is if he doesn't know you are there or see you coming.

The F-105D, when clean, runs at the speed of heat so it controls the engagement.  A MiG-17F needs burner to keep up with a Thud on military.  Just about the only thing that can catch up is a MiG-21 and we make note of that before we try to engage.

Remember your maneuvering flaps!  The Thud has a combat flap setting that's good down from 455 kias.  It cuts into your speed but it gives you a fighting chance to get guns on that MiG-21PF you can't outrun and has the advantage of keeping your ass pointed so his AA-2 can't lock.

It's not part of the Dicta, but it should have been:  Do not fight how your opponent fights!

The MiGs like turning engagements, don't fall for it.  Use the vertical.

The dicta are tactics, but they're tactics for pros.  Pros study logistics, right?  It's in Rule 7.  Make sure you know your fuel state.

Aside:  It really is spelled Boelcke not Bölcke.  Quite often a German word with an 'oe' means someone didn't have the means to type umlauts.

Alcoholics Against Cancer

Don't forget to click over in the top right.  We really could make the $500 goal this year.

Abide The Brony Abode

It's a recycle from earlier, but it's fitting since Erin says "The Thag Abides."

I've always wondered what their cutie marks were...

09 September 2013

The Dark Lady

That night The Lady drank a toast.
She said, "Here's to your lovely lady host."
No voices replied... and the Dark Lady sighed.

Ceili's Muse.


There are two kinds of people who are geeks.

One kind works at the carnival.

The other kind should.  We sci-fi fans, cosplayers, gamers, bronies, furries and such are geeks.

If you're none of the above and work with computers, you are a NERD not a geek.

By the way, if you're socially accepted and admired for your departures, you're probably not a geek or a nerd.

Geeks don't fit without at least scraping the edges.

I Once Was Lost...

From back when I started...

This is where I air my thoughts. I talk about guns, I talk about politics, I talk about religion. I'm a low-rent philosopher.
These are my opinions, I try to back them up with facts when I can, but this is not a research paper so citations might be very spotty. I will try to give credit where credit is due. That applies to blame as well.
Some basic things: I am pro-gun. I'm a heterosexual who supports gay rights. I'm an atheist who supports freedom of religion. I'm a disabled veteran. I'm a father. I'm a husband. I'm a scoundrel.
I believe in liberty and freedom. I feel that you have to give them to receive them. I believe that freedom and liberty have warts and unpleasant consequences; and I don't care. Eliminating freedoms to get the warts is exactly the wrong way to do it.
Liberty and freedom are ideals; unattainable in the real world. That means there are limits to them. There are things that are off limits here too.
This is my soap-box, not yours. If you have so much to say that you are drowning out what I am trying to say; make your own blog. I do welcome comments, however. Remember, this is not your place; but mine.

I think that I forgot who I was and why I was writing it down.

I will return to these simple beginnings.  I figured out what was wrong with my joie de vivre: hopping on the bandwagon yelling, "Me too!" wasn't me.  I mistook overlap in interests for participation.

I've seen where my participation was welcome now.

Special thanks to those who've been most helpful with my epiphany even if I was mainly in my cups feeling sorry for myself because I'm not one of the big boys who gets invited to events and handed free shit.

It suddenly hit me.  I'm not the person who gets free shit.  I was just jealous and I because I am completely disinterested in changing who I am to become the person who would EARN those "freebies" I was suddenly balanced about it.  I am who I am.  I am not who I am not.

I don't really want to be anyone else!

Happiness returns and all is well in The Abode.

An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Gothie Pie and her Glock.


08 September 2013


I am going to set out to be a better writer.

First step is to be less of a dick.

Poor Erin gave me a bunch of advice that I need to absorb.  Poor Erin because I will be full of irritating questions.

Second I need to pick a direction.

Am I writing about politics?  Guns?  Cars?  Gaming?  All?  None?

Best Update Evah

My "little" brother home with the kids!

He's still got lots of PT left to do, but this is the best way to show the progress.  Sisinlaw says this is just a visit home with his actual discharge being next week.

Thanks for all your prayers towards this crusty atheist's family!

Kicking Cancer

Hanging with Robert and Kim who are running their own charity drive for St Judes at The Brass Tap in Trinity.

Marv was kind enough to snap a pic of me in my 5.11 Tactical Kilt and Sporran.  Weihenstephaner Hefeweissbier is what I am imbibing.

Nobody had me hold still to scan the QR code to donate to KTKC, but it's still a sound idea in theory.

04 September 2013

Special Election

My state representative vacated his spot to take on the job of county tax collector.

They're having a special primary and a special election.

Only one of the three Republican candidates actually lives in the district they're running for and neither of the Democrats.  Pillars of the community, ain't they?

I had not thought things were so bad that we had to import politicians.

You Know

Scan Me Seymor, Scan Me All Night Long

It's not Jay G's Kilted To Kick Cancer, though you'd never know it from all of the people linking to him.

The greasy WOP isn't even Scottish!

(I can say that because I'm half WOP half Scot)!


I've long held that spaceships in games like Traveller have more in common with submarines than aircraft or anything NASA has flown.

The environment outside is very inhospitable.

Long periods of time without contact with the outside world in hyperspace.

Long response times in normal space should there be an emergency, basically if you can't fix it on your own, you're probably going to die.

This leads to thinking about other little details.

Submarines have a "christmas tree" showing the status of every single break in the hull.

A Traveller ship should have the same system.

Then there's the perennial favorite hatch of the Traveller universe; the iris valve.

It looks like a camera shutter.  A shutter that's 1.5m in diameter.  I just don't see something like that being something that works well.  With pressure on one side an vacuum on the other there's a lot of force on those plates sliding against each other.  Lots of surface area for leaking too.

A powered swinging hatch might be a better idea.  Even a single panel sliding door is well, a lot less complicated.

Simple is good when you've got hot vacuum on the other side of the door and Spaceman 3rd Class Somedood in charge of maintaining and closing it.

Of course, an iris valve could be five or six individual hatches that are pivoting open and the iris effect is from them having the pivot points arranged in radial symmetry.  That means the complicated hatch is the way it is for redundancy.  Any single panel will close the entire opening and only one needs to close to seal.  That also means that only one needs to fail to open to trap you.  This one also takes up the most space in the coaming to allow the panels to retract.  A normal shutter's door just has a bit of overlap at the center and no door covers the whole opening.

It's very telling that iris type closures aren't used in piping.  Butterfly and gate valves are about it.

Addendum:  From my LiveJournal April 5, 2009.

Sliding doors and iris-valves are neat, but would be complicated. Think about the materials you need to use to prevent things like vacuum welding. 
I have described sliding hatches that had double doors. Each face moves towards the center, away from the jamb so that in case there's pressure on one side and not the other, the vacuum side will be pressed more firmly in its coaming and cannot be slid into its pocket until both sides are centered. 
Swinging hatches are likely to be more common. If you put a geared mechanism on the door, the pressure will not prevent it from opening or closing (nor will high g-loads). But what keeps a bone head from opening it at the wrong time? 
I propose a simple diaphragm bolt. Springs hold it centered if there's pressure on both sides. If there's a pressure drop, the air pushes the diaphragm against the springs and the bolt slides into the opening mechanism and prevents it from opening. This same mechanism can also be used to trip the closing mechanism. I envision the slider looking like an emergency stop button. Slap it, the spring loaded door closes FAST. Vacuum pulls it, door closes. What if you need to open it? You pull it out, and hold it while the door opens. You could override the closure mechanism by wedging something under the button, there might even be something built in for that. No lights, you can feel for the button. If it's down you know the other side is in vacuum.

Thump Drag

I've been remiss.

The Lovely Harvey has been tracking things via Facebook and my Sister In Law isn't giving easy to blogify text messages anymore.

Herk is walking in physical therapy!

There's even a vid.

His gait is steady and slow.  But he's doing it unsupported, just has a therapist standing by with a recovery strap.

Considering he broke a femur and had stroke-like damage to the other side, he's doing awesome!

Speaking of that stroke-like thing...  His face doesn't look all slack and lifeless on the right side anymore.  Pictures of that scared me more than anything.

The jury is still out on how much he's lost and how much he can regain; but considering how terrifyingly bad the outcomes on one end of the scale could have been, everyone is relieved.

PS: the post title is from MY physical therapy when I was learning to walk again after the shattered bilateral tib-fib had stitched enough to take weight.  The left leg healed far better than the right and when I was on the parallel bars the first few times the left leg would hit hard THUMP and then I'd kind of flop the right into position for the next "step" without lifting it DRAG.  The Bat thought this was the most amusing thing in the world so she cheered me on with "thump-drag-McThag!"

03 September 2013


My hearing problem has a name!  It has been diagnosed as a lack of working memory (called sense-memory in the classes I took) where memories were being flagged as important enough to be retained as short-term memory and thus weren't something I could let fade into the background.  As if everything was flagged, "important, read now!"

But treatments for that don't work.

I've been treated for ADHD, and the treatments were ineffective.

I recently stumbled across what it most likely is; I have misophonia.  Joy of joys, no cure-no treatment.

I remember when some sounds first started bothering me too.

Like many stay at home mothers, my mom made some extra cash babysitting.

Those kids raised with different table manners would smack their lips.  It drove me nuts and I couldn't explain why.  I was probably in 2nd or 3rd grade.

The problem advanced as I got older.  First chewing, then breathing, then tapping then movements.

Couple this with hearing damage where the whole world seems muted but the frequencies where most of the irritating sounds seem to be.  I can hear bass VERY well.  Subwoofers are a joy (Gods but English needs a sarcasm font!).

I wear earplugs all the time.

I have a fan running all the time and not that stupid expensive silent Dyson shit neither, the cheapest noisy POS from the hardware store because it makes noise.

I read that tinnitus and misophonia are bedmates.  I've got tinnitus too.  My dad was crew chief for an amateur fuel/altered team when I was a wee little one, I was driver of his team's something-stock car, I was in the Army before they realized that tanks caused lots of hearing damage and I am a heavy metal fan.

I learned late that my hearing is precious.  I do want to keep what I have left, but the misophonia makes me not want to hear so much of what I can hear.

My most fervent wish while synesthesia like cross wiring to the fight-flight response has me in its grips that the person annoying me will be annoyed by something that drives them as insane as what they're doing to me does.

People who don't realize that what they're doing can be annoying never seem to grow any empathy until they're hurting as much as the victim.


Or nine and some.

Or just under... three?

Today is the eighth anniversary of the oldest post on my LiveJournal.

June 13th was the ninth anniversary of me starting that blog, but I deleted more than a years worth of posts in a rage one day...

On the 22nd will be the third year of blogging here, under the desk.

02 September 2013

Fast Food Strike

You want $15 an hour?


Considering I had to drive to three different McDonald's to find one that could understand that there is a McNugget Happy Meal listed on their menu and could tell the difference between the spicy mustard and the honey mustard

You don't deserve raises.

You deserve pink slips.

Happy Glorious Socialist Worker's Day!

Joy to the proletariat!

It's ironic that this day is mainly considered a "big sale" holiday and the lowest paid workers rarely get it off.

Someone hook a generator to Marx's feet, he's good for gigawatts.

01 September 2013

KTKC Official

Day one and I seem to have figured out how to put the correct link under the picture of my gut sword revolver ugly mug KILT.

I know I succeeded because there's been a donation under my link!