This Space for Rent

Jul 30, 2016

Three Lynx

Three Lynx mini-panorama

One of the little company towns that PG&E maintains for the workers at the Oak Grove hydroelectric plant.

Jul 29, 2016

Friday Dust Mite Blogging™

Bowlful of mite

Bowl of mite

Jul 28, 2016



What my workbench looks like when I start approaching the end of a production run of racks. Yes, I can’t find anything l set down on this mess, so when I get the racks finished off (waiting on confirmation for the fork leg rack brazeon locations for a Velo Orange PH-D fork) I’ll get to clean all this junk up and make my workspace tidier for a few weeks.

(There are five racks here; off to one side is a rack platform which I brazed – despite carefully marking rail centerlines! – the central rails about 3mm off to the left, even if you can’t tell what is rack and what is framebuilding mess.)

Jul 27, 2016

The piano player

The piano player

New Code!

As part of my attempts to start a rackbuilding business I’m assembling a large pile of various jigs and other tools that let me glue a rack together without more than a minimal amount of hairpulling. Most of this doesn’t involve a computer, but I’ve had to make guesses about how to position the rack in relation to the wheel dozens of time, and about 1 in 10 of them turn out to be either too high or too low.

So, after doing a run of 5 racks and guessing the deck position for ALL of them, I finally snapped and did the math for where the silly thing needs to sit to clear the wheel under it. And made that into a tiny C program (which I need to rewrite as a tiny javascript program to put onto a web page, but right now it’s easier for me to pop open a shell window (macos is basically FreeBSD, hideous free software warts and all) and run a little program that does the math for me.

Check it out – It probably won’t melt your computer!

Jul 25, 2016

A life of relentless toil

Hard at work

It’s hard work being a lily of the field

Jul 24, 2016

Not the most compelling phishing attempt in the world


We are looking for employees working remotely.

My name is {name}, I am the personnel manager of a large International company.
Most of the work you can do from home, that is, at a distance.

Salary is $2500-$5000.

If you are interested in this offer, please visit
Our Site

Best regards!

There are literally hundreds of mail messages like this in my spamtrap, all identical except for the random {name}. It is terrifying to think that such an obvious phishing attempt might actually be successful at separating anyone from their personal information. (Why, yes, I’d love to work for “large International company” and I’d love to visit “Our Site” (actually a page in a hacked wordpress site) for information. Here’s my name, address, bank details, and social security number!)

Jul 23, 2016

Railroad picture of the day

ATK #2 leads a southbound Coast Starlight onto the Steel Bridge

A southbound Coast Starlight @ the Steel Bridge

Jul 22, 2016

Friday Dust Mite Blogging™

Peach Mite

Peach Mite

Jul 19, 2016

Waiting for a train

An eastbound Airport train arrives at Lloyd Center

An eastbound Airport train (with Julie on board) arrives at Lloyd Center

Jul 17, 2016

Getting the bodges out

"MTB"ing, #2

A new practice bag for the kit bike; a 9x7x7" (approximately; the back has a considerable tumblehome to clear the handlebars, so it’s only about 6 ½" long at the lid) red xpac bag with the full complement of rando-traditional external pockets. There are many things wrong with this bag, but most of them can be ignored or kludged around, so I think I’ll be able to use the bag for short (<200 mile) loops over the next month or so (I don’t know if it’s big enough to hold a full layer for longer/colder rides.)

Jul 15, 2016

Friday Dust Mite Blogging™


Helpful mite

(blurry) cat photo of the day

Green-eyed demons

Mavis & Buckeley, iphone 5ified

Jul 12, 2016

Green geep

Tucked away on a siding on McBrod Ave

A much-travelled Milwaukie Road GP-9 (=>GP-20, then GP-10) sitting on a siding off the McBrod Ave lead

Jul 11, 2016

Snip snip

Practice bag (in kit form)

The xpac (+black cordura wear panel for the bottom) panels for a 8×7.5×7.5 practice bag I’m making to finalize my process before I cut the material for an even bigger rando bag I’m making for a fellow in North Carolina.

Jul 10, 2016


@ Trader Joe's [hdr]

The kit bike is not nearly as sprighty as usual when it’s dragging 50-60 pounds of laden trailer.

Jul 08, 2016

Friday Dust Mite Blogging™

Rackbuilding mite

Rackbuilding mite

Jul 07, 2016

Annoying misfeatures of open®©™ source®©™ software, part ∞

Because I don’t have enough things to do already, I decided that I’d update my macbook to the beta release of the latestandgreatest version of macos. Which is fragile, as befits a beta (apps have been tending to explode and fall over periodically) but which has exposed me to some obnoxious features in modern open source software. The obnoxious feature I discovered this afternoon was that the version of ssh Sierra uses (v7, instead of the v6.9 that was in El Cap) no longer supports dss encryption or the old diffie-hellman key exchange protocol. Which means that the large collection of internal machines I’ve got that use dropbear (because openssh is a festering pile of security holes) won’t talk to it because they want to do diffie-hellman key exchange, and my @home dns server (freebsd 4.x) won’t talk to it because it uses dss encryption, which is apparently a Bad Thing because the NSA can crack it. And, of course, I can’t push out a newer version of dropbear, because it uses the festering pit of crapware that is gnu configure (which doesn’t work on OSes more than about 5 years old, which kind of defeats the whole fucking purpose of an autoconfig program.)

And since osx uses magic security to protect system files (can’t touch them unless I do some sort of recovery system gymnastics to disable that level of protection) I can’t just overwrite the ssh with the older version that’s in El Cap. I can put that older ssh into ~orc/bin, which is an adequate kludge, but it’s still a kludge to get around the insanely stupid configuration decision to not have permissive clients but paranoid servers. (until I copied the older ssh, I got to my older servers by ssh'ing to a old mac mini, then jumping to them from there.)

Man, I’m glad I got out of the software biz. If I had to do this for a living my head would have exploded by now.

Jul 05, 2016


Recycling old clothing & random fabric

Taking a trailer full of old clothing & fabric scraps to Far West Fibers for recycling.

Jul 02, 2016

Guy in trouble, the early years

Guy in trouble, the early years

Silas’s artwork from about 10 years ago.

Jul 01, 2016

Friday Dust Mite Blogging™


Climbing Mount Laundry