Saturday, August 17, 2019

Little Red Motorcycle

Topped off the tank today to discover that I seemed to be getting about 32 mpg. This is about half of what I was expecting but I'm optimistic that this will improve as I start using the bike to actually go places rather than just going around the block in the lower gears to check how things are working.
Didn't come out half bad I think.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Smackdown of the Week


Tuesday, August 13, 2019

When Technology Fails - Facial Recognition

Some facial recognition software was recently tested in California which identified a bunch of legislators there as criminals. The criminals legislators objected to this for some reason and now insist that the software not be included on police body cams.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Gun Laws - How Well Do They Work

Mr T 2's twitter feed is reporting that Colorado's violent crime rate took a big jump after we got universal background checks, magazine capacity limits and other feel-good laws in 2013:
Source is Colo Bureau of Investigation according to him. Looks like violent crime was in decline until the legislators stepped in to save us.

Others have noticed.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Will It Run - 10.1 Details

One of my friends mentioned that I had left out the steps between step 8 and step 10. Not so, step 9 was back in early July featuring me bitching about the stock carbs being really bunged up. Step 1 involved me throwing up the hands and fabricating an intake manifold to accept a single side draft carb of the same size as the originals.

Found a Mikuni knock-off that came with 2 spare jets and a rubber adapter to attach it to whatever engine you want. This thing also came with a page of instructions written in Chinese with translations that sometimes resembled English.
Click to enlarge. From what was readable, the jetting that came with the carb was the richest and was intended to work on a 125cc 2-stroke. Swapping to the smaller jets and dropping the needle one notch has the 535 running like a normal motor and the plugs show no soot deposits any more.

The carb has a raised lip that attaches firmly to the rubber adapter provided, which BTW has a spacer feature in the middle that reduces the port from 32mm to 28mm. The adapter was replaced with a piece of radiator hose with an Oring spacer that has no restrictions at all. The manifold has no engagement features so the hose needed to be as long as I could make it and some punch dimples added to the manifold spigot for traction. This works.
The engine is a 90 degree twin. There's a fellow selling a cast Aluminum manifold with gentle curves and a real Mikuni carb for about $600 which I'm sure works a treat. This one cost $28 for the carb plus some sweat. The perfect is the enemy of the good enough as they say.

The ChiCom carb was intended to work from a gravity feed fuel tank, so reducing the fuel pump pressure seemed prudent. The above Delrin block has a hole thru it on the bottom from fuel pump on the right to the carb on the left. The passage in the middle is drilled about halfway through and is connected back to the fuel tank. Down from the top is a small hole through to the lower passage with a check ball and spring. Excess fuel is passed up to the return line and the pressure is adjusted with the set screw at the top, barely visible. This reduces the delivered fuel pressure to 2 psi which the carb can handle. Crude, but effective.

Meantime I had a pair of carbs from a newer 535 fall into my lap from an unlikely source. They seem to be all there and not bunged up. The only thing holding me back is that the aft carb has coagulated gas holding the float needle in to the seat with the tenacity of Super Glue. At some point the  needle will loosen up and I'll finish the cleaning and try them out. Who knows, they may work. 6 years, a model change and 3-6 revisions so they must be better, no?

Friday, August 9, 2019

Will It Run - 10 - Final?

Looks like it. Minor mods to the carb mount and some tweaking of the jets and the thing seems to be running well. Slightly sticky throttle leading to fast idle, but that's most likely a lack of lube on the cable. Drove it up to the bank just now and the rear spark plug looks like it's never been in an engine. Nice.

Spent today fitting a small faring to it. PITA to get on or off, and yes I should have painted it first, but I wasn't sure it would actually fit so I've got a blue faring on a burgandy bike. I'll fix that later. Looks like I put about 90 miles on it just getting it to run.

 Fuel pressure regulator and ChiCom carb. That line from the bottom leading up is an overflow. Any other place I point it would drool gas onto a hot engine.

It had 7382 when I started. Lotta trips around the block.

Bring Back The Asylums?

Mass murders seem to have all too often, the common feature of a killer with multiple screws loose or missing. After a while one begins to wonder if there are more of these running around loose, and why now? Clayton Cramer is working on a study (maybe another book?) on this topic and is collecting data on all the mass killings he can find records of back to the 1600s So far the results look like this:
This graph doesn't go all the way back, but it's what he has the data for now. The two spikes are interesting to say the least. Have we been seeing more than out fair share of mass killings lately? Seems we have. When did this get started? seems in the 80s. What happened in the 80s? Global Warming? Ronald Reagan? Oh yes, how about deinstitutionalization? If you clear out and close down the state mental hospitals, where do the former inmates go? Why out on the streets. Most of the latest batch of killers are too young to have had anything to do with this turn of events, but they might well have been involuntarily incarcerated had the old programs not been cancelled.

Now think about the First steps program whose purpose is to empty out the state prisons. Well intentioned, but I'm suspecting this will end about as well as its predecessor. As a by-product I suppose we can expect the sudden uptick in violent crime to lead to further calls for gun control.

Never let a crisis go to waste, even if you have to create it yourself, eh?

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Scott Adams Loses It

Todays periscope is exceptional in that Mr. Adams, normally a wise voice of reason, starts out well by pointing out that if someone proposes a solution/cause/whatever regarding gun violence that hits only one thing, they are either lying or stupid. On this I agree, and think that the third possibility is both. Are mass shootings caused by violent video games? Probably not, but they make a convenient scapegoat. Are they caused by availability of guns? Well, it's difficult to perform a mass shooting without one, but absent a gun there are lots of other alternatives, several of which are arguably more effective. This makes a fairly convincing line of argument as far as it goes.

So next, at the 24 minute mark. he goes off into this fantasy about how guns affect the personality and mental state of the owners. Has anyone, he asks, ever acquired their first AR pattern rifle, and not posed with it before a mirror to see how "cool" it makes him or her look, and imagined how many people he could kill with it? He also suggests that the styling of such guns encourages that kind of thinking.

My guess is that that number must be statistically as close to zero as not to matter. Some people, maybe a lot of them, buy clothing or cars on that basis. Being a consummate nerd, I pretty much didn't, although the style factor did come in a time or two. Lately with cars, although I plead midlife crisis on those. I have never, however, ever bought a gun based on its "cool" factor.

Any one who poses in front of a mirror to see how cool they might look while killing a large number of people was already planning to kill a large number of people before he acquired the gun.

He also suggests that if the guns looked less menacing, no self-respecting wannabe mass shooter would use one while committing his crime. All this would do is encourage the sale of a can of black spray paint to go with your new Evil Clown Rifle. It would also bollix the concept of painting toy guns in bright colors to more easily distinguish them from real ones. Some criminals are already painting the barrel thingies of whatever function red in order to lull the victim/police into not shooting them until they get close enough to give the thug an easier shot.

Anyway who would think to stop this guy as he entered a Wal-Mart:

Monday, August 5, 2019

Five Questions, Seven Answers

Five Easy Questions and Seven Easy Answers

Over at Mike Adams asks “Five Simple Questions regarding the El Paso shooter. Here are some answers:

Five huge questions are screaming out for real answers:
 Well, actually seven, but so what?
#1) If there’s only one shooter, why did so many eyewitnesses report multiple shooters at the scene?
Back in Viet Nam, when five VC observed an American helicopter shot down, all five reported it and the news dutifully reported five helicopters as having been shot down.
#2) Why did the local police arrest and hold three suspects in custody, as was widely reported by the media before the story was changed to a “lone shooter?”
Cops arrest everybody even remotely suspicious, and sort them out later. This is only prudent practice.
#3) Why does the so-called “manifesto” appear to be written by someone far older than 21 years of age? (Answer: The manifesto is a hoax. It was not written by the individual who was arrested as the shooter.)
Cut and Paste is your friend if you can't write deathless prose. Just find something you agree with and put it up.
#4) How does one man kill 20 people and wound another 30 people with a single magazine that only holds 30 rounds? The surveillance photo shows no chest rig, no battle belt and no spare magazines.
Firing into a tight group with an AK rifle, you would expect multiple hits an many of your shots. As we note in IDPA: Shoot-throughs count.
#5) If the shooter is on a suicide mission, why does he bother to wear both eye protection and ear protection? Answer: Because he knows he will survive his “mission” and be taken into custody after surrendering to police. It wasn’t a suicide mission at all. Eighteen months from now, the world will have forgotten the name of the shooter, and the media will never report anything about him again. (He will likely be relocated under the witness protection program, living under a new identity after having completed his “mission” for the deep state.)
Maybe he just wants to maximize his body count and he knows he'll have trouble doing this if he's hearing or vision impaired. He may be crazy, but he's not necessarily stupid.
BONUS QUESTION: If you hate illegals and want to protect America, why would you mass murder Americans shopping in an American store? Wouldn’t you theoretically want to target illegal aliens if that’s who you want to destroy? Nearly all the people who were shot were Americans. It makes no sense to hate illegals and then turn around and mass murder Americans.
Speculating here but if you want to promote gun control, like the fellow in New Zealand, you attack the people who vote for candidates who support it, increasing their motivation to elect gun-grabbers.
ONE MORE QUESTION: Why was the shooter’s online profile changed from “Democrat” to Republican / Trump supporter / QAnon follower? Clearly the deep state is modifying his online profile to match their own conspiracy theories and official narratives about QAnon followers being “domestic terrorists.” This is Orwellian-level psyop stuff being run on the entire nation…
Knee-jerk reaction by the left. They need this sort of thing to be done by a gap-toothed redneck in a Trump hat in the worst way so every time a “progressive” does this they try to cover it up.

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Gun Law - Cali

U.S. District judge Staton has ruled:
Stanton opined that a ban on M-16s can stand under scrutiny of District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), because such guns are “outside the scope of the Second Amendment.” She then turned to a ban on AR-15s, saying, “Thus, if a weapon is essentially the same as the M-16, it is not protected by the Second Amendment merely because gun manufacturers have given it a different model number and dubbed it a ‘civilian rifle.’”
Somewhere in the 2nd there must be a "scope clause" that defines the limits as to what sorts of armaments a person may own. I'm looking at the word "people" and not seeing much of a limitation there, and the word "arms" and seeing no definitions or limits there either. Back when the amendment was written, people owned wall guns and field artillery so if we must invoke limits, allowing for modernization that would cover up to 155mm artillery and rifles presumably up to 20 or 30mm.

This looks to me like a good candidate for the Supremes, although even with todays court, giving them an opportunity to make such a ruling strikes me as rather dangerous.

Friday, July 19, 2019


Found at Moonbattery, this gem from Corey Johnson of the NYC City Council:
“I do think that there are too many parking spaces in New York City,” Johnson said bluntly. “We have over 3 million [on-street] parking spaces in New York City … and we should reclaim that space and use it for the public.”
This was met with guffaws of laughter here in Casa Billll, which is a good long way from New York. Firstly, who does he think is using those spaces in the first place, Aliens from outer space?

My take is that if you think about it, there is nothing, I mean absolutely nothing that's done in NYC that can't be done just as easily, quickly, and more cheaply in DFW. Well except maybe for docking ships. In Texas they do that in Houston. Visualize if you will a phone call to your broker, a member of the New York Stock Exchange:

ring, ring: Howdy! Thank yew fer callin' Megamoney Brokerage. How kin ah hep y'all today?

OK, it lacks the stuffiness of money so old the Smithsonian has samples of it on display, but once you get over the overtly helpful ambiance, you'll find the job gets done just as fast as ever.  And never fear, those cowboys will not be bothered in the least at any sum you throw at them. They're already used to it.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Fun With Headlines

Haven't read the article so feel free to tell me I'm guessing wrong:
Pinkerton: Why the Democrats Would Rather Fight Each Other Than Trump
For the same underlying reason the Scots claim they never lost a battle: If both sides are Scottish, then the winner is always a Scot.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Fun With Cartoons

The comic strip Shoe is in reruns and has been for some time now. Included on the site, at no extra charge, is the work of an editorial cartoonist who seems to not view the president favorably. Usually his stuff has all the subtlety of an Antifa rally, but here's one that lends itself to multiple interpretations:

Imagine if you will, that President Harris has named Eric "Duke Nukem" Swalwell to be her Disarmament Czar. Imagine that he starts out near home base, in Alexandria VA, demanding complete and total disarmament of the citizens. Imagine that he is unhappy with the level of compliance from the citizens, and rolls out his trademark move. Imagine the reaction of the Never Trumpers, shown here in the foreground.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Suppressors - How Well Do They Work?

The folks at Ammo To Go have run some tests on suppressors with both pistols and rifles and published the results here. Spoiler: Rifles don't get noticeably louder or quieter with changes in barrel length, and everything gets about 25 dB quieter with a can. Nice, but only the .22s get below the hearing damage level.

While barrel length doesn't seem to make much difference on the rifles, I have noticed that shooting PCC class in IDPA that the pistol caliber carbines are enough quieter than the pistols that the shot timers sometimes have trouble hearing them. Add a can, and they could become quite user friendly. Alas, no PCCs were tested.

One might note that in the case of the Virginia office shooting, the use of a suppressor on a .45 cal pistol likely had no effect at all on any ones ability to hear the gun and locate the shooter.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Visit Colorful Colorado

This could work out. Fly in to DIA, arriving in the morning, and without leaving the airport, do a pub crawl, visiting no less than 6 micro breweries and sampling their wares, top it off with a nice Bacon Gooseburger (maybe at Chick Fil A?), then take a nice nap in a VIP lounge, and catch a late afternoon flight home with a bag full of souvenirs.

Could be a fun day.