Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Wanted: Spunky Lab Assistant

A recent Best Buy commercial shows some
customers shopping for a Geek Squad assistant.
This in no way inspired this post, the body of
which was already written, it merely makes it

In order to expidite the process I'm going online
in my search for a new Spunky Lab Assistant.

First let me dispel rumors about what happened
to my previous Spunky Lab Assistant [SLA].  She
did not get blown up, burned down, nor
bisected by lasers.  I did not turn her into a
monster, rather she turned herself into a 
monster all on her own.  Another story for
another day [off the web].

This is not as easy as I thought it would be.
I'm trying not to be too picky about specific
job skills, but there are quite a few that
are inherent to the long tenure of any Mad
Scientist's SLA.

Summary of desired job skills;

Major or minor in any 2 of the following;
chemistry, mathematics, physics, applied or
theoretical, computers, or other tech field.
A dropout with a good reason has preference
over a graduate with a bad reason.

Experience with grant applications.

Know the A B C's of proper fire extinguisher use.

Be able to sew Ripstop & Tubular Nylon, Kevlar,
Nomex and Denim.

Know the charades gestures for; Sedative.

Be able to work both English and Metric factors
in the same equations without freaking out.
[It's a rocketry thing.]

Know what the Periodic Table is for, and NOT for.

Be able to tidy up without disturbing "all my
tubes and wires and careful notes."

Know how to make a lab coat and safety gogs
look jazzy.

Make GOOD Coffee, sometimes with makeshift
equipment, or under adverse conditions.

In the words of Dr. Hawkeye Pierce as played by
Donald Sutherland; "She's gotta be able to work
in close without getting her tits in the way."

Oh yeah, most important;  If I start running, she
should be able to keep up!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Apollo 11 Owners' Workshop Manual, No Really!

When I first saw this last year or so over on
Zzakk's garage, I assumed it was some kind
of spoof.  Not sure if the book even existed,
or was just a cover.

I found the link on Spaceflight Now website.
The link went to Amazon.  There it was, for sale.

I'd like to add that I had the Haynes manuals for
all my motorcycles and love them.  Much better
than Chiltons IMO.  Haynes books are more
likely to list a substitute for that hard to find
Grumman Z347L  pintle injector spanner.

Maybe if my brother buys this for my birthday 
I can fly that Lunar Lander out of my back yard.
It looks good there, but it's tough to cut around.

Monday, July 5, 2010

A Classy Ride

But pretty it aint.
The Bell X-14, I want one!
Can anyone name another jet powered aircraft
with an open cockpit?
I suppose it's just as cool that the X-14 is a VTOL,
but I like the open cockpit best. I want to take it
to the coast and wave to the girls as I cruise slowly
just off the beach, scarf trailing behind.
Surprisingly it would go 172mph and reach 20,000Ft,
brrrr, it's cold up there!  Well, not too surprising,
any plane that can VTO has power to spare.  Range
was 300 miles. Corpus Christi here I come.

The X-14 was built on the cheap in 1957 using  
Beach Bonanza and T-34 Mentor parts. Vertical
lift is provided by a belly mounted flap that
vectors the dual jet exhausts downward. Bleed
air from the engines to puffer vents at the wingtips
and tail provides control in hover.

Good news, it's being restored at a museum in Indiana.