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Log 2014112901

This post was in my drafts and was written prior to this date.

I installed No Signal Alert Pro and Voice Recorder by First75 on my Android smartphone this evening.  While the only place to test this is down trail at this point, I'm feeling confident that the "signal lost" and "signal regained" with me being the voice of the computer will work and give me auditory notifications of such events, especially when I'm looping to, or back on bicycle. Also, I'll be able to turn the smartphone on just before an anticipated area of coverage to make updates to Facebook and family. The new voice recorder app now lets me record in .amr format, which is needed for the computer to pick them up as notification sounds in the directory: mnt\sdcard\sounds and make them available in the No Signal Alert Pro's properties menu.

There's been problems trying to get this to work right.  So far, I tested those sounds and everything seems to work as it should.  Also, the signal lost sound with also be simultaneous with the "red alert" klaxon that I have as a part of my ST: Red Alert, or Star Trek wallpaper.  This and the app are necessary to facilitate my custom signal alerts.

I went shopping at Century Cycles in Peninsula of Summit County today.  That's where I dropped off the 30 year old refurbished road bike that I recently purchased to get a new rear rack and grip tape installed.  I managed to purchase a new 750 lumen head lamp with an internal and rechargeable Lithium ion battery.  At 750, I'm at a loss for words.  I'm not sure that I can properly comprehend how much light that is?  The best thing that I have is only about a 140 lumen hand flash light and I think that thing impressive. To use a religious metaphor, a 750 might open a gateway to God.


Log 2014111901

This is a picture of me in my "Virginia is for Lovers" tuff guy shirt.  I secured my smartphone to my goose neck windshield mount and told the folks on Facebook that I was taking a "selfie with no hands."  What you can see somewhat in the back is my 2008 Chevy HHR LS with the back seats removed.  Taking them out was very simple, it only involves removing four nuts.  Since the car hauls "The Cramper," or my improvised pop-out camper, regardless of whether it's assembled or collapsed in transport mode, I removed the back seats for extra luggage capacity.

For those of you who navigated here from a search engine, The Cramper employs a 20ft tarp that I place over the outer shell in the back.  With bungee cords and 45° like folds going downward folds towards the back seat doors, I'm able secure it to the holes in my rear rims and the bars in my after market roof rack.  The roof bars have unused holes that pertain to different width roofs that the product can mount to.  I looped some paracord through outermost available holes so I'd have something to hook a bungee cord to that wouldn't slide across the bar in high winds, which is unlike looping the bungee cord around the pole and hooking it to itself.

Each side uses three bungees and then another 3 in the back.  I use two short red bungee cords and secure them to my trailer hitch.  Then I use a long yellow one with a red plastic end to secure the tarp from side to side under The Cramper's expansion floor.  It's a bungee cord where one end passes through a circular opening in the red plastic on the other end, then fits into a narrow channel along it, grips the cord and secures it in it's hold.  Most tarps looping holes will buckle and tear under the stress.  They need to be repaired from time to time and you can find replacements at a home improvement store, maybe even a hardware store (I haven't tried to find this there yet).


Log 2014111401

I'm abandoning an addition idea that I had hoped to put on the Ohio Transit Hiker's Resource (OTHR).  It's a fuel to transit cost comparison and the problem is getting fuel economy to match up exactly with the US federally rated MPG's. Since, they are split into city and highway, I would have to measure each starting to each ending point separately and then subtract the city mileage (which I would have to guess what's under 55MPH).  The truth is that I just don't have enough information to produce this document.


Log 2014111202 sent me a headlamp along with my bicycle rim USB generator.  So, I picked it up and pushed its power button on the back side, which seems to made of white rubber.  Well, the bad news is that when I went to push the button again, it didn't make any clicking sound.

At that point, I plugged it's USB type A connection into The Robot (my large media center computer) and the headlamp came on.  I dismounted the USB and removed the white rubber cap on the switch and didn't see anything that looked like it was broken.  At this time, I don't have any use for it anyways, all I wanted was the generator.  I don't have any interest in returning the lamp to Hong Kong at this point.  And the generator has not been installed yet.

Log 2014111201

My bicycle rim driven USB Generator arrived from in Hong Kong via the US Postal Service today, as well as the bicycle GPS mount for my Garmin eTrex 20.  That came from Guangzhou, a city in the Guangdong providene in the People's Republic of China, which also arrived via USPS.  As noted in this log previously, my former chain driven USB generator also came from Hong Kong.

Before the chain generator started to cease, it would only generate power when the chain was in motion. That was enough to prolong my smartphone's battery, but it wasn't always enough to stabilize it's pre-ride level.  Anyways, it only had a 1350mAh generator on it. I also had the cellphone battery and the chain generator connected on a parallel circuit (they were both directly connected to a 4 USB port hub).

In the past, the bike battery would shut off after about 10 minutes in that configuration when supplying power to both the hand GPS and smartphone.  I'm hoping that when I configure them next time to be in a series circuit, that I can generate enough power to feed them both and stay on.  But I'll say this for the new rim generator... it did not come shipped with any installation or operational instructions all.  But I think that will be alright because there's really not much to it.  Just the generator with mounting forks, two holes, two bolts with butterfly nuts and some rubber gaskets.

On new NiMH AA batteries, the eTrex 20 can stay on for 26 - 39 continuous hours without having to recharge.  Unfortunately, the device itself can not recharge the batteries. That must take place in a separate AC to DC wall charger.  And I don't see myself as needing power from the bike battery, or the rim generator unless the field GPS is out of power and I'm out of charged batteries, or the temperature dips down to less than 37°F.


Log 2014110301

The last time I had this system hooked up on my bicycle, I was using a chain driven USB generator.  But the generator's gear started to make noise and cause some resistance.  I was on the road at the time, so I had to cut it free and throw it in the trash.

At the moment, I'm waiting for a new rim contact driven USB bicycle generator.  Today, I picked up a couple cables at Micro Center in Mayfield Heights of Cuyahoga County.  I was getting help finding them from an associate who was informing me that the generator and battery could cause feedback and burn out one of my hubs USB ports.  That's when I came to the solution that I'll just hook them up in series instead of making the battery a branch off of the hub.

Since the USB bicycle rim generator is on order at the moment, in this picture it is represented by the cookie (in the package).  From the generator, it will go into the external cell phone battery's micro USB port (which is what it would use when charging).  The from the battery, the series will connect to the USB hub (that doesn't require additional power (like from a wall plug for instance).  I used a spare USB conversion bit and some all weather electrical tape to plug the empty port on top.  And from here, power from the generator and battery should feed into the GPS and smartphone.

I have the battery stationed at the top rear corner of my bicycle's frame (under the seat).  Either this or one of my other cables that I have lying around should be able to reach the generator.  But the battery to the hub will require an extension, which at the moment, I believe that I have.  Finally, I'll have to plug the bottom port of the hub considering that I'll no longer be using it for the bike battery.

I found out that the chain generator was only producing about 1300mAH of electricity.  My smartphone is a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 with a 7" screen.  It's power hungry and the battery runs on about 2700mAh.  For anyone reading this, your battery's power output will be printed on it (except for some of you folks using Apple).

Prior to this, I drove to the Medina Section, TP 17B - Abbeyville & Fenn Rd on the Ohio Transit Hiker's Resource's map and guide.  When I was routing this from the computer, knowing the area, I know that the traffic on Fenn can be aggressive and fast.  So, I was driving through at 1830hours and have made the determination to pull the unmarked transit spur and replace its waypoint icon with a warning one.  And rewrite the guide to warn all OTHR transit hikers that they shouldn't use Fenn Rd as a spur.


Log 2014110201

These days, I moved back to my hometown of Painesville of Lake County for the time being.  I asked about sharp declines and inclines in the immediate vicinity of streams to members of the Buckeye Trail Association's (BTA) Facebook page for the Scioto Trail, Sinking Spring and Shawnee Sections of the Buckeye Trail (BT) [North Country (NCT) & American Discovery Trails (ADT) concurrent].  The inquiry was in regards to snowshoeing.  And the information that I got back was that this effect was not isolated to the Whipple Section, but I've determined that it may not be safe to hike when there's snow, or ice on the ground.  Therefore, hiking in January and half of February might be out of the question with out re-routing on to the road.  I could move my end point, which is currently in the Village of Mount Orab of Brown County at the West Union Section, Pt. 32 to Shawnee Section, Pt. 23 of the current map, I could possibly eliminate that section in the winter because it's almost all on-road.

Tentatively, I'm planning to hike between Scioto Trail Section, Pt. 21 to Sinking Springs Section, Pt. 23 in early December.  This is because the Village of Waverly in Pike County is near ST 21 and Village of Peebles in Adams County is at SS 23 are both linked by the regional Greyhound affiliate "GoBus.'  Pike County has a local rural transit agency offering shared/ dial-a-ride/ curb-to-curb type services who cater to the general public.  The GoBus stop is actually in the nearby Village of Piketon in the same county.

Since the BT's is a 1,426mi circle within the four corners of Ohio, the BTA Store sells pocket size map and guide combos on one document.  The trail can be hiked in both directions and there is mileages for both, but it only fits the guide in the clockwise (CW) direction.  Even with a GPS, I personally prefer to hike CW when ever I can.  Because the BT's maps are digital and look great these days, but in navigating odd intersections off-road, or having to turn on to something unsigned on the on-road can be little harder when reading the CW directions, then reversing the mileages mentioned (for instance) while heading counter clockwise (CCW).  So, I see myself starting this trip from ST 21 on foot, hiking.  It's a 73 mile trip that should take roughly 5 days to complete.

But at the moment, I'm staying in a 15' x 20' room.  Space is in short supply here, so I acquired some of the hardware to lift my queen size box spring and mattress.  I'll be using 4x4's to lift it about 3 to 4' off of the floor.  Then the framing will be built out of 2x6's and 2x4's all the way around.  It will be bolted, but I'm not sure with what yet.  And I'm not sure how much support the underside of the bed frame will need to support everything without having to rely on another support going to the floor.  And two sets of rails will be installed along the bottom and mid way to the bed frame underside.  But the left side of the structure can not have a mid brace due to the fact that the underside of the bed will be used for storage and it needs unobstructed access.

When I had my last apartment, I'm a single guy, so I had two smaller marker boards mounted in the vertical position, and a larger unit next to them in the horizontal.  Today, I purchased the same type of boards from Wal-Mart in Chardon of Geauga County.  They'll be installed just like before with double sided adhesive tape. I got them today, because I needed the big one to draw out the plan for my new bed frame.  Otherwise, they'll be used for my projects, such as the Ohio Transit Hiker's Resource (OTHR).

Right now, I'm waiting to receive a 'L" shaped desk.  I inherited it from a relative, but right now, it's in his condo.  It's going on the market soon, so they need to use it for photos.  In the meantime, I have a plastic table that I'm using as a temporary desk.  The laptop is on what I like to call the "wheelie desk," which is a raised platform on wheels just large enough for it with a small amount of space on the side.  So, I can still work on a project, but the setup in one corner of my new room hasn't been finalized yet.