Ham Radio Stuff

Free ham radio class! On-line! But why?

Free ham radio class! On-line! But why? Stuck in your house during COVID? Want to talk to people but don’t want them to see your sequestration hair-do or lack thereof? Wishing you had done more to properly learn electronics? Too much dust on your voltmeter and soldering iron – if you can find them? Think a ham radio license would...

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COVID Closure Extended

COVID CLOSURE EXTENDED – WE’RE GOING ON-LINE The City of Richmond Hill, our hosts at the David Dunlap Observatory, are anticipating keeping all community centres closed until June 2021. The DDO is managed as a community centre, so that puts our activities there on hold until then. Ylab members have been meeting on-line, including our...

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Main dome Main dome

Update on the DDO Restoration

New paint job on the dome Ylab’s home at the DDO has been undergoing an extensive restoration since the spring. As scaffolding is starting to come down,  it’s looking amazing. The work has been extensive. Removing all the old lead paint without getting it in the environment. Carefully restoring all the windows to their original...

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Another fix-it night. Sorry, Crappy Tire.

We just happened to pick this one Our recent fix-it night posts here and here seem to have a common thread: crappy Crappy Tire tools that need repairing. This week… well, we didn’t intend to pick on them. It was just the luck of the draw.   Small 12V tire compressors – the type that plugs into the cigarette lighter 12V...

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Closing up the desktop project

Case closed. Desktop too. We posted earlier about our project to make a lockable enclosure for the reception desk of our home, the David Dunlap Observatory. We left that post with a pretty crappy picture. Protective plastic was still covering it.  Test usage showed an area for improvement. Sliding everything into place would work better...

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More tool repair

Nose to the grindstone Last week we posted about our evening repairing crappy Crappy Tire tools. One tool  could not be fixed. Here once again is our picture of a pair of side-cutters that broke simply doing what side-cutters are supposed to do. Reminds us of the old mechanic’s joke about there being two types of tools – Snap-On...

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Fix-It Night for Crappy Tire Stuff

We have a bunch tools at ylab, and some of them from Crappy Tire. We can call them that – after all, Canadian Tire fought for the use of that name. You would normally think we would be using their tools to fix other things. Nope. We had to fix the tools. This  Mastercraft drill is about 4 years old, the first 3 1/2 years being unused...

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You’re doing *what* with a microwave???

Don’t be a hero. Many pages on the Internet tell you how to make a spot welder from a discarded microwave oven. We always thought it was a crazy idea. And then a couple of the more experienced ylab members told us it made sense and would not result in electrocution or being nuked into a medium-rare meat sack. That explains some of the...

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Ylab and A.I. North team up: Python crash course on Sept 20

  Ylab member Lucian has been running the Artificial Intelligence North meetups for the last couple of years at Markham Public Libraries’ Angus Glen branch. He’s had an incredible variety of quality speakers and topics  – machine learning, neural networks and more. Click on the link to see for yourself. The meetups have...

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