Thursday, December 25, 2008

A cold Chrismas Day, indeed.

The mercury in the back deck's thermometer is falling quicker than Paris Hilton's undergarments, but we're all cozy and warm inside the house. Sandy Claws brought me the entire Firefly series on DVD, as well as the Serenity movie. I'm off until the 5th of January, so the big Hitachi plasma HDTV is warming up the living room, as are my little Svetlana/Sovtek friends, all 8 of them.



Who are they?

That's easy. They're nifty little devices that convert electricity into wondrous audio magic by way of glowing incandescent filaments.

Observe - two of the four (dusty) Svetlana 6550C pentodes residing on top of my audio rack, hiding behind some smaller Sovtek 12AX7 and 12AT7 triodes:

And the device that brings much joy to my ears, whether it's a DVD movie, our HD digital cable service, a CD, or my favorite round vinyl disk:

And here's where the JoLida 502B sits in the greater scheme of things:

That Jolida quad 6550 push-pull amp is feeding just the front two main channels of my surround system. The other 4 channels are fed via a vintage Yamaha DSP-1 Sound Field Processor (a rare treat, even in this day of Dolby 5.1 Surround), and Yamaha M-35 4-channel power amplifier, seen behind the glass in the rack. Hidden at the bottom of the stack is an older AMC digital-to-analog converter, crucial to pipe the digital signals from the cable box and DVD player to the big analog-only JoLida.

Someday, when I can swing another $1,200 per unit, I'll buy two more of those amplifiers to feed the surround channels. In the meantime, I'm enjoying the Firefly series and staying warm...

Merry Christmas, y'all! I hope everybody stays warm and cozy, wherever they're reading this blog from!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

What to do, what to do?

So there's this box of Hornady 500gr FMJRN .458" bullets sitting there on my office desk, courtesy of a friend who no longer had a need for them.

Of course, I have a Ruger#1S chambered in .45 Government, aka .45-70. That means one thing to me - Thumper .45-70 loads!

Here's me setting up to make a small batch, using my trusty Huntington's Compac Press and those ancient German Craftsman dial calipers:

That's a compressed load of IMR-3031, by the way! I ended up making 25 of the artillery shells, with 5 destined for the shellholder in the Ruger's sling:

The muzzle energy calculator says they'll deliver 3600ft/lbs of whoop-ass as they depart the barrel. That means your's truly will be shooting them from the offhand position. No way am I riding them from the bench!

The big question now is what to shoot them at? I have ideas, to include an old V8 engine block, or something similar. Maybe I should schedule a trip to visit Mr. Box-O-Truth...

Monday, December 08, 2008

Nicely done!

This fits so well, and is especially valid since I read today that the UAW was demanding a place on the GM board of directors.

It's nice to want things, isn't it?