Monday, July 7, 2014

portland, maine wind turbine game

Hey second westers far and wide.  Here's the report from a southerly part of a northerly state.
Cruftbike continues to accrue miles.  Seven each way, five days a week.  and that’s just the baseline.  Every part of the bike is at least secondhand.  I respect it, its numerous ball bearings, its sinewy cables, and its clapped-out chain.  Brakes in good shape?  Tires hard?  let’s ride.  I feel a warm optimism to know that bicycles exist in great numbers, and that their parts are plentiful and interchangeable.
IMG_1003IMG_1084  IMG_1005

they pitch out a lot of nice food in the city of Portland.  Good thing cruftbike has hauling capabilities.
dumpster treats for the fourth

At the 9-5 I make and modify some real wonky looking hunks of metal in the machine shop.  I am working with a bunch of people to make affordable, reliable wind turbines for your back yard.
here's a picture I took of one of the turbines back in March.
that's an 80 foot tall guyed tower.  way tall!  We raise and lower it with a lever arm about a third the height of the tower, some cable, and a pickup truck in first gear.  The lever is called a gin pole. I've been told that's because you drink gin on it when the job is done.

and here are some rad chunks of junk that I have a hand in.  They are experimental turbine parts, and parts of machines that make more turbine parts.
IMG_1058 IMG_1121 IMG_1148 IMG_1146IMG_1018
I got my other bike running and legal back in Boston last weekend.  Carbs cleaned, new tires, tank de-rusted (mostly).   An inline fuel filter keeps us moving.   My first good ride after the MSF course was the trip back up to Portland.  I split it between route 1, I-295, and I-95.  We got there in one piece with no hiccups.
the price for true freedom is eternal vigilance
there’s something special about tinkering with the innards of the thing that hauls you down the freeway at speeds that walking feet can’t comprehend.   
I took this picture at a Goodwill in south Portland.  it seems that cheapos on decade old ninja 250s shop at goodwill and get 80 MPG.
at goodwill.  frugal riders ride ninja 250s
Portland is pretty small compared to Boston.  It’s a short ride on either bike to get out of the city and feel like it too.
machining by day, scrounging and reading by night.  spacing and wandering on weekends.  yeah, I’d say it’s summer.