Frequently I have a problem with self-assemble furniture not holding together as well as I would like. The bolts back out over time the legs in our kitchen chairs get wobbly. Or a bolt from an office chair falls out completely and something that used to work stops working. If I don’t notice the mystery bolt on the floor and the malfunction on the same day, I get other problems.
The last time I got a wobbly chair, I had an idea. I wrapped the threads with PTFE tape. (Sometimes incorrectly called Teflon® tape. It’s the same chemical, but Dupont doesn’t make thread-sealing tape anymore.)
Normally you use thread-sealing tape on plumbing by wrapping the threads of pipes before assembling the parts. The tape makes the threads watertight and also helps you tighten them tighter.
In this application, I don’t need the threads to be watertight but I need to really cinch the bolts down, and the addition of a bit more material around the threads will, I hope, make the fit less sloppy and less prone to backing out.
It will also keep them from seizing, should you ever need to disassemble for any reason. You can use a thread locker, but this was Sunday night and the stores were closed and I didn’t have any. I had PTFE tape on hand, and it’s a lot cheaper.
After upgrading to Windows 10, when I unhibernated my laptop the next morning, my wifi connection didn’t work. Forgetting the network and reconnecting didn’t help–I’d get the message that Windows 10 can’t connect to this network.
The problem seemed to be in the power management.
Continue reading Windows 10 can’t connect to this network – solved
I had a DD-WRT router that was dropping a lot of packets. I got a lot of errors and that caused poor playback in Netflix and especially MLB.tv. It wasn’t a bandwidth issue. My wireless network connection was just too noisy. I had to adjust my DD-WRT TX power to fix it.
I probably adjusted it the opposite way you would expect. Continue reading Adjust DD-WRT TX power
I had a lawn mower wheel height adjuster stuck hard a week or two ago. I bought it off a neighbor for $20, so I expected a few problems. I fixed it with a screwdriver and a hammer.
Continue reading Lawn mower wheel height adjuster stuck? Free it!
CP/M was, as you probably know, the first popular microcomputer operating system. It was good but imperfect, and its cryptic command for copying files, PIP, is often cited as an example.
Copy makes sense. Even the Unix equivalent, cp, makes sense–it’s copy without the vowels. But what does PIP mean? What’s the origin of CP/M’s PIP command?
Continue reading Origin of CP/M’s PIP command
Someone I know got a tech support scam popup that said their computer was being hacked. I said to bring the computer over. I wanted to see it.
I found the malicious site in the browser history–I’ll tell you how to do that after I finish my story–and pulled the page back up. The computer played an MP3 file with a scary-sounding message and urged me to call an 888 number. So I called. I got voicemail. I left a message.
Continue reading A scammer called me a fraud
A friend shared something about toxic blogs last week, which got me thinking to a change I made to how I find a writing topic last fall, when I set out to make my own blog less toxic.
When I write, I keep one question in mind: Is this going to help one person a week for the next several years, if not decades?
Continue reading How I find a writing topic
I had an interesting question come in the other day: What are the differences between Department 56 and Liberty Falls?
There are some significant differences between them but it turns out it’s entirely possible to use them together. Here’s how.
Continue reading Department 56 vs Liberty Falls
Most buying guides for monitors assume you’re buying a really expensive monitor for gaming. But there’s a lot more to look for than refresh rate and response time.
A good monitor can last 10 years and multiple computers, so it pays to make a good decision when buying one, even when you’re not spending $500. There can be a significant difference even between two $100 models, or between a $60 model and a $70 model, that will save you money in the long run.
Continue reading What to look for in a monitor
If you’re fixing an old train or some other electrical device, some of the wires have crumbling insulation, and disassembly isn’t an option for whatever reason, then you can repair crumbling insulation with a $6 product called Plasti-Dip.
Continue reading Repair crumbling insulation with Plasti-Dip