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Member postings for Peter G. Shaw

Here is a list of all the postings Peter G. Shaw has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Anglepoise Lamps & CFL/LED lamps
07/05/2019 09:20:25

Ok folks, thanks for those comments.

I think the first idea might be to cart the lamp down to my nearest lighting retailer and try some other bulbs to see what happens. If I can find one that works ok, weight wise that is, then that might be the way to go. Otherwise I'll have to see about getting a set of spare springs and modifying those - I'm very relectant to mangle the originals in case I reduce the lamp to scrap.

Peter G. Shaw

05/05/2019 19:33:55

Following on from the thread about Lathe Lights & the Anglepoise copy. I have a many year old genuine Anglepoise which was originally designed to take either 40W or 60W, can't remember which, incandescent lamps.

At the moment I have a 9W LED installed which is somewhat heavier than the incandescents such that the springs are just that bit too weak to hold it in the set position and the light slowly but surely drifts downwards.

Thoughts please.

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: "Screwing" a car round a corner!
04/05/2019 14:05:56

Was that the one where gears 1 & 3 and 2 & 4 were reversed? Or was it the J4? Whichever it was , one of my colleagues was sat in the middle of a minivan (you can tell how long ago that was - no seatbelts & no one batted an eye at three people in the front) and he was operating the gear lever on command from the driver. Unfortunately he had been driving one of the J2's or J4's all day and when asked to move into 3rd, somehow managed to get it into 1st! And no, he didn't strip the gearbox.

Which reminds me of another tale. Another of my colleagues rebuilt a 2 stroke scooter engine and got the timing slightly out - at least, I think that's what it was. Anyway, stopped at traffic lights, the engine coughed, and carried on running. My colleague let the clutch out, and promptly went backwards into the vehicle behind!

Peter G. Shaw

27/04/2019 21:11:38

Dave W,

My parents had a 1953 Ford Prefect! As you say, 6V system, only one dip headlight, one brake light until the law changed, semaphore signalling, 3 speed gearbox, etc etc. That car was mollycoddled - garage, sump heater, engine blanket (old coat), and even then sometimes had to be wound up on the starting handle to get it going. They ran that car until Nov 1959 when they bought a New Anglia. What a difference - 12V, decent lights, 4 speed box...

I started work in 1959 for the GPO which in those days used Morris vehicles - J types, Z types, Minors, & Minivans, none of which, were mollycoddled - and always started on the starter despite the weather conditions. After seeing my mother having to "wind up" the Prefect, and having to "catch" the Anglia when starting from cold, whilst at work the Morris's started on the starter no matter how cold the weather, when it became possible for me to buy a vehicle (the A35 mentioned above), I refused point blank to even consider Fords, a view I stuck with for the next 44 years when I finally gave in and bought a Focus Diesel. That car turned out to be arguably the worst vehicle I have ever had. In the space of 4 years and around 58K miles I had a faulty fuel filter, new clutch, new engine, new airflow sensor and something like 10 or 12 new tyres. Plus all the usual normal wear and tear items. Never again will I buy Ford. Currently I run a Toyota Avensis, 82K miles from new, tyre life around 30K a set, and other than normal wear and tear items, plus an internal mirror that we managed to break, nothing has gone wrong. What's more, at an average of 38.5mpg on petrol it compares very favourable with the two diesels (42.5 & 45.5 mpg) and performs just as well, even when towing the caravan.

Over the years I've had in addition to the A35 & Morris 1000, two Maxis, Beetle, VW type 3 Variant (arguably the 2nd worst car), Montego, Peugeot 405 turbo diesel, the afore mentioned Focus, and Avensis. Up to buying the Peugeot, I used to do all my own maintenance & repairs, but advancing years and increasing complexity and the fact that I could never get the handbrake system sufficiently balanced for the MOT testers, put me off.

It does show, though, when I look back just how much better today's cars are compared with the 1960's.

Peter G. Shaw

27/04/2019 16:24:15

Just a few answers.


Sounds about right putting them on the rear as that would stop the rear drift/slide. Also this was West Yorkshire from 1965 to (about) 1968. 1965 was when I bought the van, and about 1968 would be when I went completely over to radials.

Phil P,

My Traveller was a 67 version, cruelly treated from new - overloaded, driven hard etc. I managed to put the rear springs through the floor and break the engine steady cable. Ended up on radials all round. Typical BMC in that it leaked oil, even after having the cylinder head skimmed. But surprisingly reliable for all that.


Whatever it was, it was the legal way round. I do remember that.

Peter G. Shaw

27/04/2019 13:59:36

Many decades ago I used to use the expression in the title to describe how I got my A35 Van round corners, and I wondered if anyone else either understands what I mean or indeed used to use it. The question has been triggered because I've just seen James May saying that a rally/racing driver when asked which car gave him most fun, answered with "A35 van!".

Now my van had the 1100cc engine along with, as May put it, skinny tyres - but he omitted to mention that they were crossply which I think was an important part of what used to happen.

With that vehicle, I would approach corners under power, and remember this is a front engine, rear wheel drive vehicle, and keep the power on round the corner whereupon, I think, the rear wheels would drift or slide outwards. The result being that as I went around the corner I would have to straighten up somewhat in order to prevent the rear overtaking the front. I was, of course, in my early to mid twenties with all that implies.

The car that followed that van was a Morris 1000 Traveller, same engine, gearbox, back axle, and still on crossply tyres. At some point I changed the tyres on one axle to radials, can't remember which axle, drove the car into a corner in the manner to which I had become accustomed - and found myself heading for a wall, such was the grip of the radials.

So, do any of you recognise that expression? Or have I made it up?

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: Dol starter or just a plug is it really worth it?
25/04/2019 21:07:04

John, you beat me to it! But I would just query one thing with you. The DOL switch on my lathe was re-arranged for both single phase and three phase simply by re-arranging the internal wiring. The contactor coil was connected across one of the three phases and neutral, this being equivalent to a single phase circuit. No need to mess around removing turns of wire.

Otherwise, they can indeed be easily dismantled & reassembled. In my case, the coil failed, so I replaced the coil with a plug-in mains relay and rebuilt the insides to give the same facilities.

An edit: Yes it is worth it for the NVR function alone.

Peter G. Shaw


Edited By Peter G. Shaw on 25/04/2019 21:09:22

Thread: How can I change colours in a jpeg?
22/04/2019 09:25:26

I've just tried mine, and it says that the help file isn't loaded - correct - and gives me the option of looking at it online, which works ok.

FWIW I'm on Linux Mint 18.1 and my GIMP is 2.18.16

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: Lathe bed regrind
21/04/2019 19:44:36

There used to be a firm known as Keighley Grinders but that's long since closed. Suggest a look on Google which throws up a number of firms.

Thread: How can I change colours in a jpeg?
21/04/2019 19:24:41

I too use GIMP, having migrated to it slowly from Paint Shop Pro v.7 when I migrated from Windows to Linux. I agree that the learning curve is steep, and it's not exactly intuitive, especially after PSP. But, some of the things I have found made it well worth learning about, eg converting all my slides to digital (built a light box, photographed the slide, then used GIMP to get rid of bad colours (an auto function I found was very good), and a lens distortion function which allowed me to get rid of pin-cushion & barrel distortion).

I also use it now to increase readability after scanning a document (save the scanned documant as a png, read it into GIMP and use Brightness/Contrast functions followed by export as jpg).

The three separate windows is somewhat mind blowing, but as I have two vdu's, it does eventually make sense.

In respect of changing colours, other than enhancing them, I have not had to do that so can't help, but I'm sure the facility will be there.

And best of all, it is free.

Peter G. Shaw


Edited By Peter G. Shaw on 21/04/2019 19:25:35

Thread: Notre Dame
16/04/2019 21:36:54

I think it is worth asking, would such a building be erected today? And if the answer is no, then why not?

And is it really a good cause? Who does it benefit? Probably not the common hoi polloi apart from the temporary jobs that might be created. Ok, if it's good for tourism, then perhaps the tourists should be charged a hefty price for viewing it.

I think it is worthwhile trying to put oneself in the place of someone who was alive when it was being built. Remember that a large proportion of the people were illiterate and uneducated, and perforce had to doff the cap, tug the forelock, and do what the priests etc, ie the literate and educated, told them. So maybe it was all for the edification of the religious fraternity with the common man being told to cough up and shut up. Which perhaps leads me onto thinking that perhaps the religious fraternity should pay for its restoration. After all, we keep hearing about how much money the religious fraternity have stashed away, so here is (maybe) a suitable project for them.


Peter G. Shaw

Thread: Hard to please OAPs
16/04/2019 21:06:24

Well, I've just watched episode 2, and I think a lot of good sense was said, eg, who is interested in that you've just changed your sheets? Or all the other minutae of your humdrum life. Or selfies? To whom are they going to be of interest? Fighting the car park machine - been there and done that, although I did succeed. Those rings, and I suppose anything else like that - a total waste of time. Well, not actually, as they may speed up transactions, but how do you keep a track of what you've spent? Remember, look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves. Robots? Daughter has an early iRobot and for some reason it failed to charge the lithium battery so she bought an expensive replacement battery. All the old one needed was a bit of a charge just to get the volts up, and then it was ok.

So yes, I've a lot of sympathy with (and agreement with) the views expressed in the program.

Mind you, as a confirmed camper & caravanner for over 60 years, next week's program should be quite funny.

Yours grumpily,

Peter G. Shaw


Edited By Peter G. Shaw on 16/04/2019 21:10:15

Edited By Peter G. Shaw on 16/04/2019 21:10:37

Thread: Notre Dame
16/04/2019 11:53:31

Yes, it's amazing just how much folk will give for something like this, but when it comes to health, education etc, not a penny, cent, peso or whatever. It does seem to me that priorities are wrong.

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: Hard to please OAPs
16/04/2019 11:48:10

Disagree Ian, MY generation, ie the old & wrinklies, would have had it sorted by now. It's the generation between my generation and the youfs that are messing things up.


Peter G. Shaw.

Thread: Changing Broadband
12/04/2019 09:37:29

On the other hand, ALL my telecom services are supplied by BTplc. This gives the advantage that if anything major goes wrong then a letter to the chief executive pointing out that BTplc is responsible for the lot usually works wonders, ie no blaming of anyone else.

Of course, this does not prevent a clown in BTplc from making a total cockup as happened to me five or six years ago, but at least they could not wriggle out of it.

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: LED replacement bulbs
09/04/2019 09:56:52

Spoke too soon didn't I - see two posts above.

Another of these high power LED's has failed, this time with a definite slow flash right from switch on.

Having done a small amount of reading, I am now thinking that the problem is one of heat in that the heat generated by the control electronics cannot escape fast enough. Interestingly, the same reason was given as a reason for early failure of CFL's, something we have experienced in this same light fitting and which was the reason for moving on to LED's.

Now I know some of you will now be thinking that maybe the fitting is at fault. From my reading, I suspect that it was originally designed for incandescents where the excess heat is to some extent radiated away. In any case, incandescents do not have electronic circuitry which may be damaged by excess heat, hence the excessive heat was immaterial.

Perhaps a new fitting, or maybe two, is on the cards.

Oh well, onwards & upwards.

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: Using a propane cylinder for partable compressed air.
04/04/2019 20:15:55

Readers may be interested in ME p486 dated 20 Oct 1989 where John Chappell reports on an old Non-Refillable Propane bottle tested to destruction both hydrostatically and under steam pressure. (Ok, I know the grammar is wrong, but that's what I've copied off my home-made database: I assume he tested two bottles.)

The report was followed up in ME p114,19.01.90; ME p424, 06.04.90; 18.01.102 with letters from Tubal Cain, Peter Spenlove-Spenlove and P.R. Perkins.

From memory, ie I haven't actually looked up the references, I think the bottle was buried and the tester monitoring from some distance away.

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: Rulers - my pet peeve
02/04/2019 19:33:34


I have a number, 6 I think it is, of 6 inch/150mm steel rule(r)s. Some were magazine mounts, some, the so-called flexible rules were bought, and one is a Rabone Chesterman No. 64R. Nice rule(r) to use, easy to read, but, compared to the other rule(r)s the metric scale is noticeably out by a small amount. So is it incorrect? Or is it that all the others are incorrect?I should point out that the other 5 appear to be identical.

Incidently, comparison was made by placing them side by side and comparing between say 10mm and 150mm thus avoiding any wear on the end.

It's a long time since I compared them, but I do think, especially as the 64R claims to be standard at 20 degrees C, that I would have checked them after leaving them overnight in a warm room to get them all to the same temperature.

Needless to say, the 64R isn't used for much other than drawing lines!

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: Dishwasher detergents
31/03/2019 09:44:29

Whilst I appreciate that often items are made in the same factory and placed in different cartons for resale, I have had a situation where this was not true. To be fair, the situation was 30 years ago, and hence things may well be different today, but it does make me be rather cautious.

Back then I used to do my own car maintenance and bought disc pads from a local fast turn over parts place. After a few incidents of severe brake fade under heavy load conditions, I mentioned it to my tame mechanic, who on descovering where I had obtained the pads recommended going back to the manufacturers originals, even though they were twice the price. I can't remember the exact details but apparently the pattern parts were not getting rid of the braking heat quickly enough, something to do with the brass content.

Changing back to manufacturers originals drastically improved braking efficiency, and I never had another brake fade experience. I should point out that for normal running around, the pattern parts seemed ok - it was only whilst descending long steep hills, eg Hard Knott in the Lake District, that the problem became apparent.

Peter G. Shaw

Thread: LED replacement bulbs
31/03/2019 09:33:36

In Sept 2017 I bought 3 off 18Watt 2700K LED lamps with a 5 year warranty and badged as Bell. These were described at the time as the brightest they had and yes they certainly are bright which was what we needed for the room they are used in. No idea what the lumens are.

Unfortunately, within a few months two of the lamps failed - intermittently flickering off. Both were replaced under warranty. Since then, no problems.

Peter G. Shaw

Edited By Peter G. Shaw on 31/03/2019 09:34:07

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