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Old 09-25-2014, 02:12 PM   #41
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Interesting. Half stump will travel?
I know it's a joke but even though the stumps are dried out they are really heavy. Add the weight from the stakes, vise and hammers and they aren't going anywhere.

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This sounds like something I would like to try.
This is so much fun. You can make planters, troughs, leaf castings for stepping stones or birdbaths or jewelry, fountains. One drawback in our area is the weight of the Portland cement. It comes in 47 & 94 lb. bags but they only carry the 94 pounders. They weight almost as much as me and I have to struggle to move them. The bags of builders sand weight about 50 lbs. Helps keep me in shape.
These leaves are cement. I use them for necklace pendants. I paint them and some like these I seal in resin.
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Old 09-25-2014, 02:20 PM   #42
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Free to Canoe, These are small planters made from hypertufa.
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Old 09-25-2014, 03:46 PM   #43
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Another off-the-beaten-path pleasure of mine is fountain pens.
I liked them in jr. high and HS, but stopped carrying them when one leaked in my shirt pocket. There is definitely a different feel to them, even the ordinary cheap ones that I used then.
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Old 09-25-2014, 06:50 PM   #44
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Jäger, what would be a good choice for someone who has never tried the fountain pen before? Something inexpensive to try it out?

My weirdest hobbies have included being part of a hula hooping troupe, pole dancing (for exercise, mind you, not $), and driving a school bus around the world.
Hi Sarah,

One of the quick disadvantages of fountain pens is that they often are quite expensive. Before becoming interested in them I thought a $25 Cross pen was an expensive (too expensive!) pen. Alas.

I can heartily recommend something like a Pelikan M200. That's a hundred dollar pen (!) and is considered moderately priced in the fountain pen world. There are some less expensive models out there - Lamy has several models that have generally been received well - but I don't have any personal experience with them.

The Pelikan M200 was my first fountain pen and I instantly fell in love with it. Enough that I eventually bought two more for myself, and one for my DW.

A few links that might be helpful:

Goulet Pens is a family-owned operation that has lots of information (including videos) for the fountain pen novice. I haven't ordered anything other than inks from them, but they have an excellent reputation in the fountain pen community. Good people.

Fountain Pens, Fountain Pen Ink, Fountain Pen Paper | GouletPens.com


Just like this is the internet forum for retirement-related issues, The Fountain Pen Network is the place for serious fountain pen aficionados. Very highly recommended.

The Fountain Pen Network


Should you buy a Pelikan, I'd recommend you consider purchasing from Richard Binder. Richard is probably the foremost tuner/repairer of fountain pen nibs and he also sells several lines of pens. He checks out (and tweaks, if necessary) the function of the new pens he sells (at no additional charge).

RichardsPens.com • Pens That Write Right!


Finally, there are a couple of stories on my website that talk about my entree into Montblanc - yes, that first Pelikan sent me deep down the rabbit hole - that perhaps give a glimmer of what the fountain pen world is like for someone new to it.
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Old 09-25-2014, 07:40 PM   #45
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Another reloader here, prior to that I dabbled in model railroading.

-CC
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Old 09-25-2014, 08:05 PM   #46
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Quick question to the reloaders: I am going to start fooling with centerfire reloading this winter. Is 38 special a good place to start in terms of being relatively simple/easy? My other choices from stuff I have on hand are 357 mag, 44 mag, and 35 Remington.
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Old 09-25-2014, 08:39 PM   #47
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Hypertufa! It's a cement mix that's suppose to mimic the old stone water troughs. Gardeners started using the stone troughs for planters when wood or metal troughs replaced the stone. The stone planters became scarce and hypertufa was born. There are many different recipes but all use Portland Cement. These are small pieces in the picture. I've made up to 2 1/2' X 4' trough. I also make cement jewelry.

I have never heard of this. I love your pieces!
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Old 09-25-2014, 09:49 PM   #48
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Thanks, Dreamer. These are a lot of fun and a cheap hobby. For molds, you can use plastic ware from the dollar store, cardboard boxes lined with dry cleaner bags, damp sand mold.
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Old 09-25-2014, 11:05 PM   #49
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Quick question to the reloaders: I am going to start fooling with centerfire reloading this winter. Is 38 special a good place to start in terms of being relatively simple/easy? My other choices from stuff I have on hand are 357 mag, 44 mag, and 35 Remington.
Yep, should be pretty easy. See my PM.
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Old 09-26-2014, 05:14 AM   #50
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Quick question to the reloaders: I am going to start fooling with centerfire reloading this winter. Is 38 special a good place to start in terms of being relatively simple/easy? My other choices from stuff I have on hand are 357 mag, 44 mag, and 35 Remington.
Reloading straight-wall pistol cartridges is about the easiest reloading there is. And .38 Special is a great round to start with. The same die set will let you do those, plus your .357 Mag.

The one piece of advice I'd offer is to buy a carbide die set rather than the standard steel dies. The carbide die allows you to resize your cases without first lubricating them, a benefit you'll come to deeply appreciate.
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Old 09-26-2014, 05:55 AM   #51
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I remember hot-desking in an office where the office manager had a whole collection of little bottles of sand, labeled "Some of a Beach from [name of beach place]."

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OK, here's an odd hobby and cost me very little and takes almost no skill. Back in the late 70's, the DW and I were on vacation in Daytona Beach with another couple. I was drinking a Corona Light beer and admiring the white sand, among other things on the beach. When I finished the Corona, I filled it with some of the white beach sand and took it with me. The DW wouldn't let me take anything else from the beach. Anyway, I didn't know it then but that bottle of sand turned into a little hobby for me. Over the years, as I traveled around the country I started collecting the local beach or river bank sand and put it in Corona Light bottles (and put the cap back on). It made a nice inexpensive souvenir from the "visit". Also, it was a great excuse to have another beer! I wrote the name of the location and date on the bottom side of the bottle so I could keep track. Years ago, I told a few of my friends about this and they started doing it too. For those who don't drink beer you need to know that Corona Light beer bottles are clear. The older bottles are better since the labels were all in one color and didn't cover much of the bottle. I guess any clear bottle would do but I like beer too.

Now I have about 25 of them. Interesting to recall the visits and see all the different types of sand. From fine powder to very course gains, Sand colors range from bright white, to brown and even light red... Didn't take any real effort (I was there anyway) cost nothing (I was going to drink the beer anyway) and didn't take any skill. (except getting the bottle caps to stay on).

I started this long before Corona beer commercials on TV were set on the beach (I think). Maybe they should pay me for my collection?
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Old 09-26-2014, 08:22 AM   #52
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Reloading straight-wall pistol cartridges is about the easiest reloading there is. And .38 Special is a great round to start with. The same die set will let you do those, plus your .357 Mag.

The one piece of advice I'd offer is to buy a carbide die set rather than the standard steel dies. The carbide die allows you to resize your cases without first lubricating them, a benefit you'll come to deeply appreciate.
+1 the other advice I'd give you is buy a Dillon press
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Old 09-26-2014, 09:27 AM   #53
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I am a wood turner and a wood carver. Between that and the Boy Scouts and Freemasonry I keep busy.
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Old 09-26-2014, 10:00 AM   #54
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Hi Sarah,

One of the quick disadvantages of fountain pens is ...
In my view, 'disadvantage' isn't a word to be used with a hobby. Once someone says 'hobby' (myself included), all thoughts of efficiency, economy, rational thinking are thrown out the window. A hobby is something we do because we enjoy it. We don't have to be able to explain it, and it makes no difference if anyone else enjoys it, thinks we are nutty, or whatever. As long as you aren't taking food from your kids mouths to fund your hobby, anything goes, in my book.

With that in mind, I really can't understand any interest in fountain pens, other than as a hobby. But I'm always curious, so I watched one of those videos, and was surprised at the end, the owner of this pen company swapped out the nib, then tested it, and said 'excuse my poor handwriting'! So that even had me scratching my head - what's the point of a fine pen w/o fine penmanship?

Hmmm, OK. I've got a couple guitars that are far better guitars than I am a player. But a cheap guitar is hard to play... ok, now I'm rationalizing my hobby

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Old 09-27-2014, 02:53 PM   #55
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I remember hot-desking in an office where the office manager had a whole collection of little bottles of sand, labeled "Some of a Beach from [name of beach place]." Amethyst
Those of us who collect sand are called "arenophiles." It comes from Greek -- lover of earth. I have 650 different samples from around the world. 150. Countries and all 50 states. Sand is not limited to beaches, but my collecting began on the beach in Cancun.
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Old 09-27-2014, 09:10 PM   #56
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Now that I have more time, I decided to sign up for ESPN Pigskin Pick'em. You only need to pick the winners of the weekly football games. So, it's much, much less complicated than fantasy football. For someone who has never done this before, I find that I am quite good at it. Through week three I'm very close to being ranked in the top ten as I am currently ranked 105, 537.
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Old 09-27-2014, 11:44 PM   #57
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My hobby is almost exclusively flight simulation. I'm constantly amazed at the advancement in the current simulators (both X-Plane and FSX) and the realism they portray. I can fly anything from a Cessna 172 around the Puget Sound, or a Boeing 777 from Dublin to Boston depending on my mood. It just keeps getting better and better. Here's a sample.

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Old 09-28-2014, 08:45 AM   #58
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Those of us who collect sand are called "arenophiles." It comes from Greek -- lover of earth. I have 650 different samples from around the world. 150. Countries and all 50 states. Sand is not limited to beaches, but my collecting began on the beach in Cancun.

That's a lot of sand and a lot of countries. I limited my collection to US beaches and river sand. I had thought about collecting sand on my international business travels but I was typical just too busy on those trips to stop by the local beach. (Work just got in the way sometimes)

Anyway, as I mentioned in my original post, I also like to drink Corona beer and then fill the "clear bottles" with the local sand. When I traveled internationally, I would drink the local beers and/or Tiger beer whenever it was available. (Work didn't get in the way that much). Tiger beer typically comes "dark bottles" which wouldn't display the sand very well.

Speaking of beer, I wish I could buy Tiger beer here in the US that's been brewed with the Asia/Pacific recipe. The Tiger beer that's sold here in the US must be brewed with a different recipe. It's just not the same.
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Old 09-28-2014, 06:58 PM   #59
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I don't do anything listed up-thread. I do:
- restore old British sports cars
- play competitive duplicate bridge

I think I'm fairly good at both. Anyone else do that?
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Old 09-28-2014, 08:26 PM   #60
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My hobby is almost exclusively flight simulation. I'm constantly amazed at the advancement in the current simulators (both X-Plane and FSX) and the realism they portray.
Y'know, I am actually afraid to try one of these after looking at the youtube video that you posted. You're right, the realism is amazing. I haven't used a flight simulator since I ran a few on my 386 PC with it's whopping 4MB of RAM and that was almost an addiction. Those, and a couple of other games like Doom. I started getting pains in my hand/wrist, an early warning of carpal tunnel syndrome, and deleted them. I've stayed away from flight simulators and shoot 'em up games since.

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