The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions." --American Statesman Daniel Webster (1782-1852)

Thursday, September 29, 2022

The A380, What Could Have Been.

 I clipped this from my work email from a 3rd party source, I get news and tidbits in my email about aviation happenings and future trends, I may be a Chemtrail Technician, but I do want to keep updated on what is transpiring in my industry. This article is an opinion piece,  I will add something to this persons opinion.  Emirates is a State supported Airline, they don't have to make money, they are supported by petrodollars, that is the reality that most airlines don't have is a "Sugar Daddy" known as a governmental entity that will subsidize them.  My employer and other American carriers before Covid had a huge squabble with the Middle Eastern carriers, it was called the "open Skies" agreement dealing with free trade, The threat the Middle East three carriers poses to my employer and other US airlines is a very serious matter. For more than a decade, Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar airlines have received over $50 billion in subsidies from their governments, in violation of Open Skies agreements that require fair competition. The subsidies allow these airlines to sell cut-rate seats without ever needing to turn a profit. That floods the international aviation market and forces other airlines out of important, profitable routes.  The CEO on one of the U.S. Carrier  has been quoted stating that within 10 years, one of the US majors will be out of business as a result of these unfair practices.  I tried to explain to people especially to people that never has been to the middle east, "It is not your country that determines what happens, it is your familial connection, your tribal connections, or what religion you belong to over there.  In Qatar for example, the extended family owns the airline, the airport, the airport services, and anything related to it, so they give each other the "Family Discount" and everyone else pays full freight plus a surcharge, it is the price if doing business in the Middle East.   Emirates is the Same way as are the other airlines in the Middle East, whereas here in the United States and Europe, the climate is much different, the governmental relationship is more adversarial."

     I view the A380 as a technological marvel, personally I preferred the Boeing 747, but the A380 is an impressive airplane and I have "Blogged about the A380" several times over the years.

Emirates aircraft on runway
Credit: Stefan Kruijer/Airbus

The Airbus A380 production line has closed, with the last of only 251 aircraft built delivered to Emirates in December. Now is a good time to look back on why the A380, though a favorite with passengers, was not successful commercially.

Explanations start in the cabin, where 10-abreast seating on the main deck was far too generous when compared to 10-abreast on a Boeing 777 or nine-abreast on a 787, the density standards to which almost all airlines have moved. While customers liked the extra room, they would not pay for it. No airline would push seating to 11 abreast, which is awkward, requiring a 3-5-3 layout.

A second feature that customers liked but that made the A380 less economically viable was the low noise level. Pushed by Singapore Airlines, Airbus designed the A380 to address that issue back when noise concerns around London Heathrow Airport were the driving environmental requirement rather than the carbon footprint. The result was that the Engine Alliance GP7200 and Rolls-Royce Trent 900 have a wider fan, and the aircraft has bigger, heavier nacelles than are optimal for fuel burn. If the A380 had been designed to minimize fuel burn, it would have been 0.5% more efficient.

The A380 also missed some key technologies and will be the last all-metal aircraft ever built. Carbon fiber is clearly superior, at least for the wings, though it is perhaps less critical for the fuselage. The metal made the aircraft heavier than it should have been, a problem compounded by carrying excess weight in preparation for a stretched version. The design and production delays, followed by slow deliveries, rendered the overall technology of the aircraft—particularly the engines—obsolete too soon. The slow sales did not encourage either engine manufacturer to invest in upgrades, a problem exacerbated by Airbus’ unnecessary and costly decision to provide a choice of engines.

The issues described here are not entirely market factors. The A380’s main problem was its inability to offer key features driving market demand.

Emirates was the only carrier that preferred the A380 over other options to the extent that it placed repeat orders, an acid test of a commercial airplane’s attractiveness. The aircraft works for Emirates because its average stage length for the A380 is low. Although used for some very long routes such as Dubai-Los Angeles, the more typical mission is 6-7 hr., to Europe or Asia. Emirates also often uses the A380 on even shorter routes, of a few hours, to the Indian subcontinent and within the Middle East. The A380 can compete on efficiency on dense routes of 7 hr., but not on routes of 10-12 hr., where the big twins are far more efficient.

Three changes would have been essential for the A380 to have been more viable commercially. First, it needed a stretch, perhaps of only 50 seats. Since adding seats would not have changed trip operating costs very much, the cost per seat would have decreased significantly. Second, to fill these seats with lower frequencies, operators would have needed to focus on leisure travel routes rather than business travelers. Finally, the aircraft needed technology upgrades or at least upgraded engines, the same recipe that has successfully been applied to the Boeing 737 and 777 and the Airbus A320 and A330.

When first launched, the Boeing 747-100 was not a big seller, but the stretched, reengined 747-200 was. With some different decisions and further investment, the A380 might have achieved similar success, at least in an environment not distorted by the disruptions of COVID-19.

Christopher Gibbs, senior advisor at Navier Consulting, served as Cathay Pacific’s engineering director for a decade.

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

The Marine Corp has a weapons Maintenance problem..

 This ties in with a discussion I had with "Mack" Last weekend while we were at Hooters with him and Jackie, we were discussing the Rifles at camp and the new shooting sports director that happens to buy Hopps #9 by the gallon and yes he he is a Marine veteran.  I can't say too much, it almost was the same way in the Army when I was in, weapons cleaning was always a thing, even though the Rifles were spotless, we were always cleaning them...it was more of a "keep the lower enlisted busy, so they can't get into Mischief than any real purpose kinda thing"  With modern weapons you don't need to clean the $%#& out of it, you strip the coating out of the rifling and expose it to corrosion. My personal weapons( before that durn kayak accidents) I  would break them down once and a while, but usually I wipe them down and ran a boresnake down the barrel and and a spot of oil on the moving parts, and that was it and they were in excellent condition.  I shamelessly clipped this from "The Sandboxx"

The Marine Corps has a weapon maintenance problem

I can’t speak for the other military branches, but the Marine Corps has a weapons-cleaning problem. When I say that, I mean we clean our weapons too much. Too much, and often incorrectly, to adhere to the strict standards of the Marine Corps. The problem is complicated and tied to both the lower enlisted and the higher-ups. If the Marine Corps wants its Marines to be the most lethal warfighters, it’s a problem it needs to solve. As it’s known in the Marine Corps, weapon maintenance needs to be revised.

The problem with modern weapon maintenance

Keeping a rifle, machine gun, handgun, well, any gun, working relies on proper maintenance. Weapon maintenance is critical to the function of a weapon, especially in austere environments. We’ve fought for two decades in deserts, on snow-covered mountains, and in the worst places possible for modern weapons.

weapon maintenance in the military

However, the extent the Marine Corps engages in weapon maintenance can be completely detrimental to the weapon. Marines find themselves using improper tools to reach a standard. For example, Marines will often use hard, stainless steel brushes to clean their weapon. When used enthusiastically, these brushes will eventually destroy the finish of the inside and outside of your weapon.

A good finish protects the weapon and helps prevent rust. Without a good finish, the weapon’s long-term reliability will be in question. My issue M9 was almost more silver than black since the finish had been rubbed off over time due to excessive cleaning.

Your average lower enlisted will likely lose or break his issued cleaning kit. This will, in turn, cause them to purchase one, which is often the cheapest one out there. These cheap cleaning kits will often have stainless steel bore brushes that can damage the rifling, making the weapon lose accuracy and consistency over time.

Marines should use bronze bore brushes mixed with bore cleaner in their weapon maintenance.

Related: The APC9K: We get hands-on with the Army’s new SMG

Keeping it shiny

weapon maintenance in the military
Troops cleaning up their weapons.

Even Marines who keep their issued cleaning kits will find them lacking and may supplement them with tools to speed up the chore. This includes Q-tips and baby wipes. I’m guilty of this, as was every infantry Marine I knew. However, Q-tips and baby wipes come with their own problems.

Q-tips break easily and can break off or deposit little bits of cotton in areas that can disable the weapon. They can get stuck in all manner of areas in rifles, but especially in machine guns. However, Q-tips do make weapon maintenance faster, and they can reach into the spots that fingers and AP brushes can’t.

Baby wipes provided the quickest means to remove dirt, dust, and carbon. The problem with baby wipes is their low concentration of alcohol and very high concentration of water which creates rust and oxidation. In time, this gathers in small cracks and pits and eventually causes rust. Rust creates more little places for water and alcohol to gather and rust. The use of baby wipes creates a vicious cycle that will wear the weapon down sooner, creating a need for more weapon maintenance.

Finally, Marines will often turn in their weapons completely dry causing them to rust in the armory. A light coat of CLP prevents rust but can also be the reason a Marine fails inspection as CLP is slightly brown, so the weapon appears dirty when an inspector uses their finger, glove, or white patch.

Related: MQ-9B STOL: A new Reaper cousin could help Marines win the Pacific

Why is weapon maintenance a problem?

Cleaning guns on ships
Everything must be cleaned!

First, the Marine Corps culture demands perfection. If something can be cleaned, be it a humvee, a weapon, or a barracks room, it must be cleaned. This creates strict requirements for cleanliness. A weapon must be inspection-ready at all times. You never know when the commandant himself might bust into the armory and inspect the weapons.

To tap into that, lance corporals and PFCs can be lazy. Without the demand for perfection, things might be really slack. Give ’em an inch, and they’ll take ten clicks.

There is also a lack of education and clear objectives regarding weapon maintenance. You learn a little in boot camp, but it’s often sidelined in favor of drills, classes, and other training. Those cleaning methods are not retained in the feet, especially when the weapons go from rifles to machine guns, heavy machine guns, shotguns, pistols, missile launchers, and more.

How to fix it?

preventive weapons maintenance
Soldiers from the 414th Civil Affairs Battalion clean and perform preventive maintenance on their weapons at the Robert L. Poxon Army Reserve Center in Southfield, Michigan, Oct 19, 2019. Equipment maintenance is an essential task performed by Soldiers to ensure the Army Reserve maintains a high level of combat-readiness. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Robert Torres)

The Marine Corps needs to revamp and re-evaluate its weapon maintenance program, tactics, and techniques. It needs to provide modern equipment and do so in bulk. Cleaning kits are cheap, guns are not, and neither is losing a firefight due to a broken weapon.

The Marine Corps should consult with the firearms industry on the most effective means to maintain weapons. They should also ensure that the troops and command are educated on what’s important in weapon maintenance and how to achieve proper weapon maintenance. No one ever told me not to use baby wipes, steel bore brushes, or Q-tips. I learned it from higher-ups.

Ultimately, the Marine Corps needs to accept that parade-ready weapons should be reserved for parades. Additionally, Marines need to accept responsibility for the tools of their trade and treat them as such. It’s a problem that starts at both the bottom and top of the branch and should be fixed before we worry about adopting new weapons.


Monday, September 26, 2022

Monday Music "The Men of Harlech"

 I started this theme back in November of 2019?...With a couple of interruptions it has been consistent...Dang.


           Saw this meme and *rescued it from farcebook*, why? because I am a humanitarian, that's why.

I am continuing my string of "bugaloo" songs.  This discussion was started in the "Monster Hunter Nation, Hunters Unite", back in November of 2019? it is a Facebook group with enthusiast of the ILOH "International Lord of Hate" A.K.A Larry Correia.  We were talking about what song would we use if we looked out of our window or glanced at our security camera and saw this.....

One of the alphabet bois lining up to take down your house...What would be your "Valhalla" song and you would set it up to play as you load up magazines set up the Tannerite Rover, turn on the water irrigation system and fill it with gasoline instead of water and prepare yourself.

 I figured it would scar the alphabet boys if they come busting in and hearing a song from the 1990's, an excellent Music Decade where we had a President that Loved America and Distrusted Government and made the comment during a speech "The most feared words in the English language to a true American was I am from the government and I am here to help.." and we listen to good music unlike the crap they listen to now sipping their soi latte's and comparing notes on the latest soyburger recipes and who wears the best manbuns in the team. 

  Normally I do songs from the 1980's with other songs mixed in with it.  I decided to heed the martial side of my nature and use this song.  It is still on my bucket list to attend a "tattoo",

NOT one of these...

Nooo...something like one of these...

The Squids did really good on this...This was TATTOO
Norway 2013, and one of my favorite routines and it is on my
bucket list to go to Edinburgh and attend one.

"Men of Harlech" or "The March of the Men of Harlech" (in Welsh: Rhyfelgyrch Gwŷr Harlech) is a song and military march which is traditionally said to describe events during the seven-year siege of Harlech Castle between 1461 and 1468. Commanded by Constable Dafydd ap Ieuan, the garrison withstood the longest known siege in the history of the British Isles. "Through Seven Years" is an alternative name for the song. The song has also been associated with the earlier, briefer siege of Harlech Castle about 1408, which pitted the forces of Owain Glyndŵr against the future Henry V of England.
"Men of Harlech" is important for Welsh national culture. The song gained international recognition when it was featured in the 1941 movie How Green Was My Valley and the 1964 film Zulu

Men of Harlech is widely used as a regimental march, especially by British Army and Commonwealth regiments historically associated with Wales. Notably, it is the slow march of the Welsh Guards, the quick march of the Royal Welsh, and the march of the Royal Canadian Hussars (Montreal), The Governor General's Horse Guards, and The Ontario Regiment, for which it is the slow march.
It was first used for cinema during the titles of How Green Was My Valley (1941) and has featured in a number of other films. It is best known for its prominent role in the 1964 film Zulu, although the version of lyrics sung in it were written specially for the film. It is sung twice, only once completely, in the film (the British begin shooting the charging Zulus before the start of the final couplet), in counterpoint to the Zulu war chants and the sounds of their shields. Film editor John Jympson cut the scene to the song so that on either side of cuts where the British soldiers cannot be heard, the song is in the correct relative position. The song is also heard in the film Zulu Dawn, which is about the battle that precedes Rorke's Drift, the Battle of Isandlwana.

Rick Rescorla, Chief of Security for Morgan Stanley's World Trade Center office, sang a Cornish adaptation of "Men of Harlech" with a bullhorn,


                      Last Pic of "Rick Rescorla" on September 11 2001

 along with other anthems, to keep employee spirits high while they evacuated during the September 11 attacks. After helping save more than 2,700 employees he returned to the towers to evacuate others until the towers collapsed on him.
"Men of Harlech" was used as part of the startup music for ITV television station Teledu Cymru during the early 1960s and, until April 2006, in Fritz Spiegl's BBC Radio 4 UK Theme.
From 1996 to 1999, HTV Wales used part of the song for Wales Tonight.
Adapted versions are sung by fans of several Welsh football clubs and as school or college songs around the world. There is a humorous parody known variously as "National Anthem of the Ancient Britons" and "Woad", written some time before 1914 by William Hope-Jones.
Bryn Terfel recorded "Men of Harlech" for his 2000 album We'll Keep a Welcome


Saturday, September 24, 2022

Been Busy at casa de Garabaldi

 I have been really with life, Last week I was in dayshift in school in EWIS school, and it was actually a hard school,  EWIS is 

    This was stressed, We are not avionics, we can swap out boxes and sign off certain things, but they want me to get qualified in " CAT III Autoland systems" on certain airplane types. 

     The project I was working on,  I also added a Canon plug to it.  The project was to properly show how to route wires, plug and unplug, pin and unpin canon plugs in aviation applications.


 I have been very busy with work and was unable to post, last weekend I spend all day Saturday with the Boy Scouts running a range and got several boys qualified for the "Rifle" Merit badge...The Shooting part of it anyway. They still have to do the rest of the work, like identifying parts of the Rifle, the Safety Rules and parts of a bullet, ete. 
     I spent an extra hour shooting the rifles they had there just having a good time, it has been a long time since I spent time out there on that range.

And of course my phone charger that looks like and F150 was out there., then went to the "Blackbird cafe in Woolsbury and had supper there, haven't been there in a couple of years.


       On my first day off I was on Amazon Prime watching a movie called "Harry Brown" and it was a bit depressing, it reminded me of a phrase " No Country for Old Men".  It showed the decay of society where the old people are preyed upon and society don't care and the police are powerless to prevent it.  It kinda reminded me of my soon to be predicament as I get older, is this what I have to look forward to?  Was kinda depressing in a way, I see the lawlessness coming and the bureaucracy more interested in prosecuting the citizens because it is easier then going after the criminals, and this resonated with me.  in the movie "Harry" fought back and showed the young punks that old men are a reason to be feared.

        It reminded me of that meme floating around farcebook and instagram.,  There gets to a point where the old guys and gals don't care anymore, all their friends are gone, and they will start stacking bodies if people or .gov screws with them. 

"Shot with a cellphone camera, the film opens with a gang initiation, where a boy living on a council estate in South London is made to take drugs and hold a pistol. He is later shown joyriding with two others on a motorbike, harassing and shooting dead a mother walking her child, and then fleeing only to be killed by an oncoming lorry.

The eponymous Harry Brown (Michael Caine), an elderly former Royal Marine and Northern Ireland veteran, tries his best to be indifferent about his violent neighbourhood. He lives in a small flat at Heygate Estate in Walworth, London. He often pays visits to his hospitalized and comatose wife, but avoids cutting through a noisy public underpass under a local motorway, which is a gathering spot at all hours for a local street gang. Otherwise, he spends his days drinking and playing chess with his best friend, Leonard Attwell (David Bradley), at a pub run by Sid (Liam Cunningham), a shady Irishman who takes kickbacks from a pair of black marketeers, Kenny (Joseph Gilgun) and Stretch (Sean Harris).

Harry is awakened in the middle of the night by a phone call where he is informed that his wife is dying, but in order to reach the hospital before she passes away he must go through the underpass, but he is too scared to do so and arrives too late. After the funeral, Leonard confides that he is being bullied by some youths and shows him an old bayonet he now carries to defend himself, citing that the police would not heed his complaints. Leonard later wakes in his flat to find someone had pushed burning dog faeces through his mail slot. He goes on his balcony and curses loudly.

The next day, Harry is visited by detectives Alice Frampton (Emily Mortimer) and Terry Hicock (Charlie Creed-Miles), who tell him that Leonard had been murdered. Members of a local gang, including the gang's leader Noel Winters (Ben Drew), are arrested, but they refuse to answer questions about the murder and are all released due to lack of evidence. Noel is very abusive to the cops and refers to his jailed father as the local kingpin. Harry gets drunk after Leonard's funeral, and while walking home along a canal street, one of Noel's gang attempt to rob him with a knife; Harry's military training suddenly reasserts itself and he turns the knife on his drugged-up attacker, killing him.

Detective Frampton visits Harry again the following morning and informs him that because Leonard was killed with his own bayonet, the crime will probably be reduced to manslaughter on the basis of self-defense.

Harry decides to take matters into his own hands by becoming a vigilante. The following night, he follows Kenny from Sid's pub to a squalid house and manages to talk himself into a pistol deal. Inside, the drugged-up dealers are growing copious amounts of cannabis and making pornography, and have one of the girls abused in these videos on their sofa, suffering from a drug overdose. Harry asks Stretch to call an ambulance for her, but he threatens him instead, forcing Harry to kill them both. He then steals several handguns, burns down the den, and drives the girl to a hospital in the drug dealers' vehicle. He notices that the bag that he had picked up at the den contains an enormous amount of money, which he takes with him, after leaving a wad of notes for the girl, who is still unconscious. He later deposits this money in a church.

Over the next few days, Harry continues to survey the gang and underpass from Len's old apartment. He follows a major drug-trafficker to capture the man's nephew, newest gang member Marky (Jack O'Connell). Harry kills the man, then captures and tortures the young man into revealing some cellphone camera footage of Leonard's murder, proving the gang's involvement. Harry uses Marky to bait Noel and another gang member into a gunfight at the underpass, which ends with Noel escaping, but Marky and the other gang member are killed. Harry gives chase, but collapses after having an emphysema attack, leading him to be taken to hospital.

Certain that the recent violence is related to a gang war, Police Superintendent Childs (Iain Glen) orders a major arrest operation, unconvinced that Harry is the vigilante as Frampton has suspected. Childs tells Frampton she has been re-assigned to an Identity Theft Unit. The late-night raids on the neighbourhood result in a massive riot. Harry awakens and leaves the hospital, and Frampton convinces Hicock to help her stop him, but the two end up badly injured in a car crash in the riots. Harry rescues them and takes them to Sid's pub, where Frampton confronts Harry and tells him that Sid is actually Noel's uncle. Harry finds Sid and Noel in the pub basement and shows Sid the cellphone video. Sid appears to be apologetic but as Harry drops his guard with an emphysema attack Sid takes his gun and delivers a vicious blow.

Frampton is in the midst of calling for backup when Sid and Noel come upstairs. Noel kicks and pounds the already injured Detective Inspector. Harry is thrown on the floor semi-conscious. Sid decides they will kill the three and dump them outside as riot victims. Sid suffocates Hicock to death while Noel begins strangling Frampton. Harry then manages to draw a hidden revolver from his sock and kills Noel and Sid in return shoots Harry. Harry asks to be taken out of his misery but before Sid can finally execute him, Frampton's police backup arrives and he is gunned down by a police marksman.

At a news conference held after the riot, Childs states that Frampton and the late Hicock will be rewarded for their work, but denies the rumours of vigilante involvement in the entire case.

The final scene is of a seemingly recovered Harry walking toward the underpass, which is now quiet and safe and the gang nowhere in sight. The VoiceOver of Childs states the impressive decrease in crime due to police efforts in the estate
      I don't know if this is my future or not,  but it was kinda depressing in a way to watch, altough it was a good revenge flick and I do like those kind of movies, it resonates with my personality.  




Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Some things about Tape measures you didn't know.

 I happen to run across this on "Art of Manliness" and it mentioned things I never though of or heard of but it made sense.

With our archives now 3,500+ articles deep, we’ve decided to republish a classic piece each Sunday to help our newer readers discover some of the best, evergreen gems from the past. This article was originally published in September 2021.

Even if you’re not a master carpenter, you likely have a tape measure on hand. It’s one of the 12 essential tools to keep in your toolbox. I’ve had my trusty Stanley 25 ft. PowerLock Tape Measure for over a decade now, and it seems like not a week goes by that I don’t use it for one thing or another: measuring wood; measuring my kid’s height; measuring the dimensions of a room to see if a certain couch will fit within it.

The tape measure is such an ubiquitous household fixture, you probably haven’t thought all that much about it. But there’s more to this tool than meets the eye. Especially the eye of the untrained amateur. 

Below we highlight a few things you might not have known about your tape measure, as well as a few tricks from the pros on how to get even more use out of it.

Answers to Questions About the Tape Measure You Hadn’t Thought to Ask

Why does my tape measure’s hook slide up and down?

You may have noticed that the metal hook at the end of your tape measure slides up and down a bit. No, the hook hasn’t inadvertently come loose. It’s actually made to do this.

The first inch of the tape is short by 1/16 of an inch. Yes, that’s right. The first inch of your tape measure isn’t actually an inch.

The tape’s sliding hook and 1/16-of-an-inch truncation create a simple but ingenious way to ensure you get a “true zero” measurement whether you’re measuring the outside or inside of a surface.

Here’s how it works:

Measuring inside/outside a surface

The metal hook is exactly 1/16 of an inch thick. If you’re measuring the outside of a surface and hook your metal end on the edge, that metal hook will shift out and create a gap that equals the space the hook takes up.

If you need to measure the inside of a surface — like in a window frame or inside a drawer — you want to count the thickness of the metal piece in your calculations. So as you push the tip against something, the hook is included in the measurement.

If this idea seems a little hard to wrap your mind around, this video by Tom Silva from This Old House will help it click.

Take Care of Your Hook — Don’t Let It Slam Into the Case

The slide in the tape measure’s metal hook has been calibrated so that it moves just enough to give you a “true zero” measurement, whether you are measuring inside or outside an object.

But if you don’t take care of your tape measure, that calibration can get thrown off, resulting in inaccurate measurements.

One of the most common ways to ruin the slide on your hook is by letting the tape recoil quickly, resulting in the hook slamming into the tape measure’s case.

To prevent that from happening, as the tape slides back into the case, place your finger in between the case and the hook to stop the tape’s momentum before letting its remainder retract. This is less jarring on the hook and will ensure years of true zero measurements.

If your kids are like mine, not only do they like to play with your tape measure in general, they like to extend the tape all the way out to 25′ and then let it roll back in as quickly as it can. If this didn’t already annoy you, now you have a legitimate reason to tell them to knock it off.

What’s the divot in your tape measure’s hook for?

You might have noticed that your tape measure’s hook has a small divot, and you might have never thought that the divot was there for a reason. But, dear reader, it is.

That little divot fits perfectly over the head of a nail or screw. Why would you need to place that divot on a nail or screw?

Allows you to take measurements when you’re by yourself. If you’re alone and need to take a long measurement but don’t have a way to anchor the end of your tape, you can drive a nail or screw into the wall/floor/piece of lumber and hook the tape onto it. Bam! Instant second hand!

Allows you to use your tape measure as a compass. You can also hook that divot onto a nail and turn your tape measure into a compass to measure out circles or arches.

Why do some numbers have red squares around them?

You might have noticed that your tape measure has red squares around the numbers every 16″. So you’ll see that 16, 32, 48, 64, 80, etc., all bear this marker.

What’s so special about 16″?

Well, in the United States, framing studs and floor joists are usually spaced with 16-inch-on-center spacing. That means the center of one stud to the center of the next stud over is 16″.

The red squares just allow you to see that 16-inch-on-center spacing quickly.

While this feature is vital to framers and drywallers, it can also come in handy for the average dude trying to mount a TV or bike rack on the wall. If you know where the center of one joist is, you can quickly find the center of the next one by glancing at your tape measure.

What are those small black diamonds on my tape measure?

This marking on your tape measure is a bit esoteric, and likely won’t be used by the average DIYer, but it’s cool to know.

On most tape measures, you’ll see a small diamond every 19.2″.

If you want to achieve equal spacing for 5 framing members within a 8’ span (some carpenters like to put five trusses per 8 feet, so the sheathing over the framing is stiffer), these are handy markings: 8 feet = 96 inches, so that if you want to place 5 studs equally distanced apart, you will place them every 19.2″.

As I said, the average DIYer probably won’t use these markings, but it’s a cool thing to know.

Measuring Tape Tricks From the Pros

Know how far your tape measure can extend before it collapses. When you were a kid, you likely tried to extend your dad’s tape measure as far as it could go before the tape bent and fell over. On most 25-foot long tape measures, the tape will collapse past 7 feet.

That’s good to know if you’re trying to measure long distances between gaps. If the gap is wider than 7 feet, you’ll want a second hand to keep the tape measure taut.

Burn an inch when measuring. Some carpenters don’t trust the “true zero” feature on tape measures. If the hook doesn’t slide appropriately, all of their measurements will be off. So to ensure they get an accurate measurement, some contractors will hold the tape at the 1-inch mark and make their mark exactly 1-inch beyond the desired measurement.

Take into account your tape measure’s case when measuring. Let’s say you’re measuring between the dimensions of your room. You’ve got the metal hook pressed against one end of the room, but then you have your tape measure’s case pressed against the other side.

How do you factor in the width of your tape measure case in that measurement?

If you look at the back of your tape measure near the bottom, you’ll see some engraved lettering that says something like “+3 inches.” That’s how long the case of your tape measure is.

So going back to our room-measuring example, if you have the tape measure case butted against one side of the wall and your tape measure is showing 93″, add 3″ to take into account the case of the tape measure. So the width of your room is 96” or 8 feet.

Measure Up, Not Down. If you’re measuring the height of the wall, it’s easier to place the hook on the floor and press it against the wall with your toe. Extend the tape measure up and then eyeball the measurement.

Use your tape measure as a rough and ready straight edge. If you need to draw a straight line for saw marking, you can use the edge of your tape measure as a rough and ready straight edge. It won’t be as accurate or straight as using an actual straight edge, but it works in a pinch.

Use your tape measure as a scribe. Drywallers use this tactic to draw quick, straight cut lines. Let’s say you need to take 4″ off the bottom of some drywall. Mark off 4″ with your right hand and hold it against the bottom of the drywall you’re going to cut. Hold a pencil tight against the hook with your other hand, and then run your hands down the bottom of the board. You should be left with a straight line 4″ above the bottom of your drywall.

Use your tape measure as a slide rule. If you need to do some quick fraction calculations, you can use your tape measure as a slide rule.

Let’s say you have to subtract 5 feet, 1 ⅛  inches from 8 feet, 2 ¼ inches.

Measure out 8 feet, 2 ¼ inches. Fold your tape measure so that it doubles back, and the metal hook lines up with 8 feet, 2 ¼ inches.

Holding that in place, move the tape measure back up until you find 5 feet, 1 ⅛ inches and see where it intersects with the other side of the tape.

It just so happens to intersect with 3 feet, 1 ⅛ inches, which is the difference between 8 feet, 2 ¼ inches and 5 feet, 1 ⅛ inches.

Who knew the humble tape measure was capable of such cool calculations, and a lot more?


Monday, September 19, 2022

Monday Music "We Like To Party" by The Venga Boys


 Sorry I didn't post, I have been busy, I will post in a few days with a compilation of what has been going on....and blogger has been giving me fits, they have been selecting a lot of my older post and putting them under review and I have been having to appeal then to get them reinstated....sheesh.

 I started this theme back in November of 2019?...With a couple of interruptions it has been consistent...Dang.


           Saw this meme and *rescued it from farcebook*, why? because I am a humanitarian, that's why.

I am continuing my string of "bugaloo" songs.  This discussion was started in the "Monster Hunter Nation, Hunters Unite", back in November of 2019? it is a Facebook group with enthusiast of the ILOH "International Lord of Hate" A.K.A Larry Correia.  We were talking about what song would we use if we looked out of our window or glanced at our security camera and saw this.....

One of the alphabet bois lining up to take down your house...What would be your "Valhalla" song and you would set it up to play as you load up magazines set up the Tannerite Rover, turn on the water irrigation system and fill it with gasoline instead of water and prepare yourself.

 I figured it would scar the alphabet boys if they come busting in and hearing a song from the 1990's, an excellent Music Decade where we had a President that Loved America and Distrusted Government and made the comment during a speech "The most feared words in the English language to a true American was I am from the government and I am here to help.." and we listen to good music unlike the crap they listen to now sipping their soi latte's and comparing notes on the latest soyburger recipes and who wears the best manbuns in the team.


"We Like to Party! (The Vengabus)" is a song by Dutch Eurodance group Vengaboys. It was released in the Netherlands in May 1998 as the fourth single from the band's debut album, Up & Down - The Party Album (1998). Following its success in Benelux, it was given a worldwide release on 9 November 1998.

"We Like to Party!" became one of the band's most successful hits, topping the chart in Flanders, reaching number two in Australia and the Netherlands, and becoming a top-five hit in Germany, Ireland, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. It is also the band's highest-charting song in the United States, climbing to number 26 on the Billboard Hot 100, and in Canada, where it peaked at number 10.

The song received positive reviews from music critics. AllMusic editor William Cooper described it as a "bouncy eurodisco hit", and noted further that it was "reminiscent of Aqua's "Barbie Girl", with its singalong chorus, cutesy female vocal squeal, and wacky synth beats." Larry Flick from Billboard wrote, "This wildly energetic foursome (two gals, two guys) from the Netherlands is pretty much a household name throughout Europe, where this infectious pop gem has been a constant on radio and in clubs. Already, "We Like To Party!" has gone platinum and double-platinum in Belgium and the act's homeland, respectively. Here, the song could meet a similar fate, especially since it features a sugar-soaked sing-along chorus that hangs out in your head until you beg for relief. That said, people who embraced Aqua's "Barbie Girl", Cleopatra's "Romeo And Juliet", and Los Del Rio's "Macarena" will be lining up for this latest slice of energetic pop. Are you listening, radio? (It's already hit No. 1 on the playlist of dance leader WKTU New York.) Conversely, this will be a no-brainer for club jocks, who continue to make major noise with the group's sweat-soaked debut, "Up and Down"." An editor from Daily Record called it "cheesy disco from Europe's top selling boy-girl band who are already lining up a massive summer single." Jim Farber from Entertainment Weekly commented, "Attention, lovers of cheeseball club music. The Vengaboys' hit "We Like to Party!" combines a campy disco beat, party-girl vocals, and a killer hook in the form of a ship horn in full blare. What began as a beach anthem in Ibiza, Spain, is becoming a Stateside smash on the increasingly Euro-driven U.S. charts. And why not? It's too willfully silly to resist." Pop Rescue noted its "unmistakeable Vengaboys sound", describing it as "a fast-paced energetic track."

The single proved to be a higher seller than "Up and Down" in the United Kingdom, where it peaked at number three in March 1999, eventually selling 474,000 copies, making it the 29th-biggest hit of the year The song additionally reached number one in Flemish Belgium, number two in Australia and the Netherlands, number three in Ireland, number four in Germany and Switzerland, number six in Austria and Italy, number nine in New Zealand and number 10 in Canada and Walloon Belgium. It additionally reached the top 20 in France. The song became the group's biggest hit in the United States, peaking at number 26 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and selling 405,000 copies.


The music video for "We Like to Party" was directed by Wendelien van Diepen. It first aired in March 1999. The video features all four Vengaboys members and other tourists travelling to various destinations in Province of Barcelona, Piera and Gavà, in a 1930s style mini-bus, the "Vengabus" (a 1933 Chevrolet series O Bus), where they end up in a nightclub in La Barceloneta, Barcelona.

Wednesday, September 14, 2022

Rolls Royce Pulls out of the Boom Supersonic SST

 A few posts ago I had done a post about the "Boom Supersonic" and the history of the SST.  Apparently Rolls Royce pulled out of the project, This will make things interesting for any other vendor or supplier for the engines.  

Credit: Boom

COLORADO SPRINGS—The list of potential engine providers to power Boom Supersonic’s Overture airliner project has narrowed following the decision by Rolls-Royce to withdraw from the Mach 1.7 project.

The UK engine maker had been partnered with Boom on propulsion studies for the supersonic airliner since mid-2020, but confirmation that these links have now ended comes as little surprise following recent comments by Chris Cholerton, president of civil aerospace for Rolls-Royce, who suggested there was little appetite to take the concept work forward into development.

Rolls-Royce’s withdrawal comes as the engine maker changes leadership and deals with the financial challenges from the COVID-19 market collapse, as well as recovering from the cost of fixing problems with the Trent 1000 on Boeing’s 787 fleet.

Despite the decision from Rolls-Royce, Denver-based Boom remains upbeat and says it will announce a propulsion partner within the next few months. The start-up aircraft maker also indicates the move to part ways with Rolls-Royce was a joint decision. “We are appreciative of Rolls-Royce’s work over the last few years, but few years but it became clear that Rolls’ proposed engine design and legacy business model is not the best option for Overture’s future airline operators or passengers,” says the company in a statement.

Boom has offered few clues about the all-important engine selection, but company founder and CEO Blake Scholl has indicated the Mach 1.7 target cruise speed of the Overture, plus the recently revealed decision to develop a four-engine design, eases the technical challenges. This widens potential propulsion options around readily available cores.

The reliance on existing cores, in turn, could enable Boom to focus instead on developing a new type of business model for the day-to-day operation of the engine. Speaking earlier to Aviation Week, Scholl said “historically, those models have not been very customer friendly, and we want to do something that’s not just a breakthrough in the engine technology, but something that is a breakthrough in the business model.”

Scholl added that “we are going to make an announcement this year. We have a pretty good idea of what it is, and we are very excited about it.”

In a statement first reported by Aviation International NewsRolls-Royce says “after careful consideration, Rolls-Royce has determined that the commercial aviation supersonic market is not currently a priority for us and, therefore, will not pursue further work on the program at this time. It has been a pleasure to work with the Boom team and we wish them every success in the future.”

The official withdrawal of Rolls-Royce also makes General Electric and Pratt & Whitney the obvious lead contenders for the engine partner role, both having relatively recently developed civil supersonic concepts for the now defunct Aerion AS2 business jet based on the CFM56 and JT8D respectively. Development of the 16,000-20,000 lb. thrust CFM56-based engine, dubbed Affinity, was discontinued by GE following the collapse of Aerion in 2021.

However, with the precise thrust requirements of the Overture still undisclosed, it remains possible that derivative powerplants based on technology from cores of newer engines are in the frame. These range from the PW800/PW1000 family to GE’s GEnx-1 and Passport—the latter having recently flown just past Mach 1 during flight tests of Bombardier’s Global 8000 business jet.

Editor's note: This article was updated to clarify Boom's statement about Rolls-Royce.

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

French Enfields from the Fields of WWII

 I shamelessly clipped this off "American Rifleman", I used to have Enfields until that durn kayak accidents.   I thought the historical aspect was pretty cool and I thought it was interesting that right after the war the French government immediately gathered them up so the partisans that helped their government against "La Boche" were immediately disarmed. the Same freedom fighters that did the fighting rather than "go along to get along" like a lot of them did.  Funny about that. 

Navy Arms French Enfields F
Photo by Forrest MacCormack

Early on a Sunday morning in June, a tractor-trailer backed into the rear parking lot of the Navy Arms warehouse north of Martinsburg, W.V. Inside the truck’s shipping container were four huge wooden crates containing a long-forgotten batch of British No. 4 Lee-Enfield rifles with a unique history. Two green, military-style chests, each brimming with plastic-wrapped bolts, accompanied the wooden containers. Inside the warehouse sat cardboard boxes filled with newly made No. 4 rifle magazines, waiting for their recipients to be offloaded. Valmore Forgett, III, president and CEO of Navy Arms, had shepherded these guns from their storage spot in France to this final point on a long journey that first started on C-47s, B-24s and B-17s flying over war-torn France.

The first rifle is pulled out of its wrap and sits atop the other wrapped No. 4 rifles in one of the shipping containers. Certain identifying information has been obscured at the request of Navy Arms.

The first rifle is pulled out of its wrap and sits atop the other wrapped No. 4 rifles in one of the shipping containers. Certain identifying information has been obscured at the request of Navy Arms.

In the months leading up to D-Day, 50,000 canisters of arms and supplies were air-dropped across the country, providing sorely needed equipment to the French resistance as part of what was termed Operation Carpetbagger. A joint mission between the British Special Operations Executive and the American OSS, Carpetbagger’s aim was to provide all manner of arms, ammunition and supplies to resistance fighters behind enemy lines in the runup to D-Day and beyond. Following the Normandy landings, these airdrops continued into southern France to support Operation Dragoon, the Allied invasion of southern France on Aug. 15, 1944. Among these supplies were canisters containing British No. 4 rifles and .303 British ammunition, giving partisans cutting-edge arms that would allow them to engage German troops confidently. While their usage is not as well-documented as those rifles in the hands of British soldiers, the No. 4 nonetheless played an important role behind enemy lines in the battle to reclaim France. Following World War II, No. 4 rifles remaining in French hands were gathered up by the French government, which had no use for British arms, and placed into storage. There they remained for more than 70 years, until Forgett started the long, arduous process of getting the rifles from their longtime storage location in France to his company’s warehouse in West Virginia.

A French resistance fighter is shown armed with a No. 4 Enfield rifle. Image courtesy of Tom Laemlein.

A French resistance fighter is shown armed with a No. 4 Enfield rifle. Image courtesy of Tom Laemlein.

As the crates were forklifted out of the shipping container, eager hands pried nails and loosened screws securing the plywood lids in place. Finally, the crate cover slid off, revealing a sea of bubble-wrapped rifles filling each box to the brim. It took the team at Navy Arms about a week just to unpack the carefully cocooned guns, while Val’s sons unwrapped each individual bolt from its plastic packaging, recorded its serial number and matched it to its rifle, wherever possible. After a brief wipe-down, quick swab of the bore and import-marking, the rifles were moved to a rack, where they awaited their moment under the camera lights. Each rifle is photographed and sold individually, so consumers will know the exact rifle they’re buying. There’s no “hand-select” option here or luck of the draw. What they see is what they get. And they’re getting some great finds with a fascinating history.

There’s no way to know definitively where each of these individual rifles served and in whose hands they were carried. If the old adage were true and these guns could talk, it’s likely that many of them would have a gripping tale to tell, but there’s little to glean from wood and steel. As far as we know, the French government never bought Lee-Enfield rifles directly from the British government. No rifles were given to the French following World War II, as they had no need for British arms. The only Lee-Enfields in French government possession were these scant few guns gathered up after the fighting was done, and most of the rifles that needed to be gathered up were those in the hands of resistance fighters who had done their job in hampering the German war machine.

After the French finished gathering up the guns, bolts and magazines were separated from the rifles themselves and stored separately. There was no overhaul, no refurbishing. The guns range in condition from showing moderate wear to nearly factory-new and have all the crisp markings applied to the wood and metal at arms factories during the war. The French did apply their own serial number to these guns for inventory purposes, each of which begins with the enigmatic “PP” prefix. Since these are the only Lee-Enfields that remained in French military inventory following World War II, they are the only such guns marked in this way, making them unique collectors’ items for British rifle enthusiasts.

The No. 4

The British military adopted the “Rifle No. 4, Mk I,” as its official service rifle in 1941. The road to the No. 4 started far earlier than the '40s, though, with origins stretching even back before World War I. While the Short, Magazine Lee-Enfield (SMLE) was an improvement over its longer predecessor, the Magazine Lee-Enfield, and represented a bridging between infantry and cavalry service arms, it was still very much an echo of the Victorian era. By 1913, the British had elected to move on from the SMLE, having adopted the Pattern 1913 in the smaller-bore .276 Enfield.

The onset of World War I made replacing the SMLE unfeasible, and by the end of the war, it was clear that some version of the Lee-Enfield was here to stay, as well as the .303 British cartridge. Refinements came in the form of the No. 1, Mk V of the 1920s, and early experimental variants of the No. 4 emerged in the 1930s. Unlike earlier models that shared the snub-nose profile of the metal nose cap, the No. 4’s barrel protruded from the end of the fore-end and featured dual lugs to accommodate the new No. 4 Bayonet, which replaced the earlier Pattern 1907 sword bayonet.

Rifles sorted for cleaning at the Navy Arms warehouse in West Virginia.

Rifles sorted for cleaning at the Navy Arms warehouse in West Virginia.

Throughout the design, elements were simplified and streamlined to ease manufacturing, including the receiver, which was similar to the redesigned action developed for the No. 1, Mk VI starting in 1926. The No. 4 lacked the magazine cut-off of its predecessors, and it featured a receiver-mounted, aperture-style rear sight, a design that saw its first iterations with the Mk V in 1922. The Mk I rear sight featured a 300-yard battle sight with a wide rear aperture for quickly engaging targets in combat and a flip-up, ladder-style sight with a fine aperture that was adjustable from 200 yards to 1,300 yards in 100-yard increments. As the war progressed, further simplifications sped up manufacturing, with the finely machined, micrometer-like Mk I rear sight replaced by simple two-position apertures and, later, stamped adjustable sights.

Evaluation & Testing

As a British rifle enthusiast, this new cache was an opportunity to grab my own example. It’s one of the cleanest No. 4 rifles I’ve ever had the opportunity to own, having functionally no marring on the wood or the metal. The bore is pristine, as is the bolt. Certainly, this particular rifle hasn’t seen any kind of significant combat use and could possibly be one of the air-dropped No. 4s squirreled away by partisan fighters as they prepared for the fight to re-take France. Of course, we’re in the realm of conjecture as to where such a gun was used and by whom, so let’s take a closer look at what is here.

This particular example was produced by the Royal Ordnance Factory at Maltby, located in south Yorkshire. Opened in the 1930s, ROF Maltby was one of a number of British arms factories constructed in areas of the country considered less vulnerable to aerial attack. The left side of the butt socket is marked “M.1944,” denoting the year of manufacture, and the “BU” serial-number prefix, as well as the fact that the serial number starts with “1,” are other clues to its Maltby manufacture. The left side of the receiver is marked “No 4. Mk I,” and correctly for the Mk I variant of the No. 4 rifle, it retains the spring-loaded bolt catch located at the rear of the receiver raceway. Topping the receiver is a stamped Mk III rear sight, typical of No. 4s built toward the end of World War II. Also found on the left-forward portion of the receiver, unique to these particular No. 4 rifles, is the French inventory number. Each of these numbers begin with a “PP” prefix, and a four-digit number, in this case, 0807. To date, no further details regarding the purpose or meaning of this serialization has been uncovered.

Otherwise, typical British proofmarks are found on the upper flat of the receiver, as well as crossed-flag proofs on the bolt head and top of the bolt handle. On the underside of the stock wrist and fore-end, there are sharp, clear manufacturer’s and inspection marks. Aside from providing valuable information regarding the origins of these components, the sharpness of these particular stamps highlights the fact that the gun’s walnut stock has never been sanded and refinished, as was the case with so many other No. 4 rifles that underwent refurbishing after the war. Aside from a few dents and scratches typically associated with long-term storage, this No. 4 is essentially factory-new, and many of the guns available in the Navy Arms batch of guns are in similar condition. One of the nice bonuses is the inclusion of what is an original sling, very likely the same sling installed on the gun during World War II. Most of the guns in the Navy Arms cache include original slings. While this particular sling seems to have had its markings worn away, many of the slings are 1944-dated and bear original markings.

While the Navy Arms team was able to track down the original bolts for these No. 4 rifles, a disappointment was the inability to find the original magazines, which are difficult to find in any condition, let alone a condition similar to the guns. Prior to receiving the rifles, Forgett contracted with a European manufacturer to provide reproduction magazines correct to the guns. The magazines feature the correct rib stamps for a No. 4 rifle and are treated with a blued finish that approximates the finish found on most No. 4s in this batch. On this particular example, one has to look very closely to see that the finishes aren’t quite congruous.

Of course, the opportunity to shoot what is essentially a factory-new No. 4 rifle is one I couldn’t let slip by, so part of this experience was heading to the range. Fortunately, I’ve squirreled away enough various .303 British loads to run a few different options through the gun and get a sense of its capabilities.

Firing at 50 yards on an indoor range, the best result was achieved with 1983-dated, German-made MEN .303 British, widely considered to be one of the best surplus loads on the market, though its availability is scant these days. The rifle held a 2.09” five-shot group with this load, which squares with the roughly 4-m.o.a. capability generally ascribed to No. 4 rifles using military loads. The worst group was produced by some circa-1960s Iraqi-produced Mk VII ball, likely exacerbated by the slight hangfires experienced with the old ammo. The Iraqi ball produced a 3.74” group. Modern loads measured between the two, with Hornady’s 150-grain InterLock producing a 2.23” five-shot group and Prvi Partizan’s 180-grain Soft Point load producing a 2.74” group.

When firing the rifle itself, a couple of points came up. First was the less-than-ideal performance of the reproduction magazine, which is not entirely surprising. Many reproduction magazines struggle on the reliability front when it comes to the Lee-Enfield platform, thereby requiring a bit of fine-tuning on the part of the end user. In this particular instance, the rear rib of the magazine was just a hair too long to reliably engage the rifle’s magazine catch, so it required a bit of filing to achieve the correct dimension. Additionally, the rifle had issues feeding the two soft-point loads out of the magazine, leading me to shoot the InterLock load from Hornady one round at a time. The two military-surplus ball loads fed more reliably, but both required extra force on the bolt to push the rounds out of the magazine and into the chamber. After a few magazines of ammo, I could feel it slickening up, so it’s possible that more time spent with the gun might smooth out any remaining issues on that front. All in all, it's a minor blemish on an otherwise remarkable platform.

As it stands, Navy Arms is offering the guns through Old Western Scrounger at prices ranging from $900 for run-of-the-mill guns with some wear up to $3,500 for a remarkable pair of consecutively serial-numbered No. 4s. While these prices are more than we’ve seen for No. 4s recently, given the condition and unique history behind this limited batch of rifles, the premium is understandable. The likely ties to the French resistance notwithstanding, it’s important to recognize these guns for what they represent not only from a military history perspective but also a firearms history perspective. The golden era of military surplus is long behind us, and discoveries of these forgotten caches of guns are rarer, and the guns themselves are fewer in number each time.

Today, the collecting world is filled with World War II guns that have circulated in private hands for decades. Thanks to this latest discovery, the team at Navy Arms now offers a chance for military history enthusiasts to have a genuine, World War II-era British military rifle that has sat, untouched, since the end of the war. The odds that another opportunity like this will come up are vanishingly low, and for those who are passionate about military history and arms, it is a priceless opportunity to reach into the past and hold something that, until now, had previously only been in the hands of those fighting for their freedom from tyranny. You can find your own example by visiting ows-ammo.com.