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Old 05-30-2015, 03:45 PM   #341
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I love the internet, as it allows me to be my own travel agent. We are able to research airfares and accommodations virtually anywhere the world in seconds. And we can find other travelers' opinions about where to go and what to see.

Without travel, we'd be relatively bored with life. This way, we always have something to look forward to--without having to spend money on "things."
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Old 05-30-2015, 03:56 PM   #342
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I like the Thermapen instant read food thermometer. I can't remember if it was this thread or the one on grilling where I learned about it but I was finally persuaded to buy one and I'm impressed. So much so that I ordered another one for a gift. The purple color is on sale at the moment and with shipping it came to $82.99 for my location.

Yes, that is pricy for a food thermometer. But I like the tiny hole it makes and the 3 seconds it takes to get an accurate temperature reading. For me that makes the price worth it.
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Prius
Old 05-30-2015, 04:27 PM   #343
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Prius

My 2010 Prius now has almost 145,000 miles. I have done nearly all of the routine maintenance myself. The only "problems" were replacing both low beam bulbs at $10 each. This has been a flawless vehicle that always returns more than 50 mpg.
My only quandary is what to get next. While I highly recommend the Prius, it just seems a little boring to get another one. There are so many fine autos out there nowadays.
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Old 05-31-2015, 12:02 AM   #344
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Originally Posted by aja8888 View Post
Fumoto Valves for quick oil changes:

Fumoto Valve | Qwik Valve™
The first mod on my Subaru Legacy wagon was Huper Optic tint,
second was a Fumoto Valve, both are still great additions.
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Old 08-15-2015, 04:33 PM   #345
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Here is a link to an electric pressure cooker. (It probably doesn't need to be this particular brand (although this is the one I own), but this is more in regards to electric pressure cookers in general...
http://www.amazon.com/Emeril-Nonstic...ressure+cooker
My mom used to have the manual kind, and it used to scare the hell out of me when I was young. I bought a manual one myself once I grew up (I was in my 30's, I think), but I still just couldn't used to the noise/steam and it ended up at Goodwill.

About 2 years ago, I bought this electric pressure cooker after watching some Infomercial on another electric pressure cooker, and I have been using it whenever I need to simmer something for a long time. I haven't used my slow cooker since I got this cooker. It uses much less electricity and it is very, very fast to cook just about anything. I didn't use it often until I got this book below, which I think is best of all pressure cooker recipe books I could get my hands on via local libraries and Amazon Kindle Unlimited.
http://www.amazon.com/Great-Food-Fas...ressure+cooker

There is some learning curve to using a cooker like this to get some dishes just right (timing, what kind of release method you should use and how long to let it release naturally before you let the steam out), but it is an energy saving cooker and a HUGE time saver (I want to eat what I want to eat without waiting for a whole day or even for a whole hour... I can get a few artichokes (with a steam basket) cooked in 15 minutes time now, for example. Beef stew, short ribs in sauce, pot roast in 40 minutes or so.. Brown rice in 20 minutes (plus 20 minute before release) Boiled eggs (with a steam basket) in 5 minutes). It's programmable (It will beep when the set time is up although you still need to time the release time). You can brown the meat, etc, right in the cooker.
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Old 08-15-2015, 04:49 PM   #346
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Windows 7

Have 8 on a laptop, hated it for about a year, but got used to it. Haven't tried 10.

Going to stick with 7 as long as poss.
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Old 08-15-2015, 05:31 PM   #347
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induction cooktop--energy efficient, doesn't heat up the kitchen like gas or electric, heat adjustment instantaneous.

Tesla Model S--takes off like a rocket, silent, high tech, lots of storage, no CO2 emissions.

Technovorm coffee brewer--perfect brewing temperature, no frills great-tasting coffee

Breville smart grinder--grinds whole beans for whatever type of coffee or espresso, for however many cups you indicate, burr grinder

Vitamix--so powerful, the cleaning mode will part your hair (well, almost)

Breville smart convection portable oven--perfect size for small meals, small batch cookies, heats up quicker than wall oven, less energy

Kuhn Rikon pressure cooker--the speed and efficiency of cooking is even more impressive on an induction cooktop

Big Green Egg ceramic barbeque/smoker: best tasting meats ever, hard to go back to gas grills unless speed is required.
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Old 08-15-2015, 06:24 PM   #348
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Kuhn Rikon pressure cooker
This brand takes away the noisy escaping steam and any scariness from a stove top pressure cooker. Love. It.

Wouldn't mind trying an electric pressure cooker sometime.

Just got a couple of Kuhn Rikon Hotpans. Best to watch the video on this page: Hotpan - Energy Efficient Cookware - Products - KUHN RIKON SWITZERLAND
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Old 08-15-2015, 09:49 PM   #349
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We're photographers, so we love our old "cheese grater" MacPro towers. We've got 2010 versions and a 2006 model, now on loan to a friend. We've upgraded to SSD boot drives and all bays are stuffed with storage drives and a dedicated time machine backup. My pride and joy is a 30" apple LCD monitor, from 2006. Sure it isn't as sharp and saturated as modern offerings, but I prefer the huge matte screen for photo editing. Plus I can easily see Firecalc input & output windows at the same time as my ER master Excel spreadsheet. We haven't felt the need to upgrade hardware or even OS and software for years. The cost of the modern "trash can" style MacPro is just too much for us now in ER.

We're bird photographers so we especially love the L series (pro grade), image-stabilized fixed telephotos from Canon. We bought these lenses from reputable sources used. They are amazing once you learn how to use them properly. These are paired with Canon 7D bodies, original Mark I version, now almost 5 yrs. old. These old digital sensors are obviously noisier than the modern versions, but more than good enough for our needs, assuming some TLC in post processing. Like the modern Apple MacPro's, Canon long lenses are even more crazy priced than ever. So no plans to upgrade, but really no need to.
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Old 08-16-2015, 12:44 PM   #350
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Just got a couple of Kuhn Rikon Hotpans. Best to watch the video on this page: Hotpan - Energy Efficient Cookware - Products - KUHN RIKON SWITZERLAND
I watched the video. Interesting to see food cooked with just the residual heat stored at the bottom of the pan, which must be fairly thick. It looks to me the heat capacity is still not that much, hence the time the pan stays on the stove is critical and the user must refer to a chart for each type of food.

I could not help noticing the demonstrated meal prepared with nearly no seasoning. It must taste very bland.
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Old 08-17-2015, 07:38 AM   #351
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I watched the video. Interesting to see food cooked with just the residual heat
Noticed the cooking method awhile back. Purchased two Hotpans at a discount from a large family-owned kitchen store that had been in business more than 25 years. The owners were retiring and closing the store.

Still have yet to give them a good test.

My thought was they might save some propane when we're boondocking in the RV. Or could take less battery power using our single-burner induction hotplate.

We shall see!
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:07 AM   #352
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What I have found when RV'ing is that the propane used for cooking is not noticeable compared to what used by the fridge, or the water heater, and the furnace if you need heat.

The ability to start a meal and go do something else like hiking or go for a walk, then come back to a meal is more important.

About conserving propane, what I have done is to install a beefy 2kW pure sine wave inverter, then use it when I am driving to run the fridge which takes only 350W. The batteries get charged by the engine alternator when running, and the 350W load can be borne by the alternator without trouble. The mpg will decrease a minuscule amount, which is OK because getting gasoline is a lot easier than finding a place that sells propane.

The big inverter also allows me to use the microwave to warm food, and with a solar panel charging the batteries I do not have to run the generator that often.
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Old 09-28-2015, 07:33 PM   #353
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Mostly for the mechanic: Keep one bucket of Wypall wipes with your toolbox, one in the trunk of each vehicle for greasy hands. But I have recently used them with good results on sticky cupboards in a rental house, and on the nasty exhaust hood over the stove.

Wypall Waterless Industrial Cleaning Wipes (91371), Heavy Duty Moist Wipers, 6 Containers / Case, 75 Sheets / Container: Automotive Hand Cleaners: Amazon.com: Industrial & Scientific
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Old 10-05-2015, 02:08 PM   #354
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My Mr. Coffee Mug Warmer.
http://www.amazon.com/Mr-Coffee-MWBL...fee+mug+warmer
I enjoy my tea very warm and often times, before I get to the bottom of my cup, the tea is cold, and I don't want to drink it cold, so I have to make another cup. This warmer keeps the cup of tea very, very warm until you drink it all (The tea will start getting concentrated if you forget to take the cup off the warmer.) One requirement (if you want the tea on the hot side) is to use a camping mug like this with enamel coating.
http://www.amazon.com/Coleman-Ounce-...ds=camping+mug
Tea was only luke warm with regular ceramic cups so I had to get the metal cup above and I have been happy. I have had this warmer for 2 years and it still works like the day I purchased it.
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Old 10-05-2015, 06:58 PM   #355
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Corona Light (with or w/o lime)
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Old 10-13-2015, 09:07 AM   #356
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Method daily shower cleaner. All natural and no scum. In my area, it is sold by Bed Bath and Beyond.

https://well.ca/products/method-dail...ray_33336.html
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Old 10-13-2015, 11:20 AM   #357
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Most anything sold as refurbished.

In that vein I just bought an 18" Pro version of my happy homeowner chain saw for $109.90 delivered to my doorstep a half hour ago by FedEx, which I ordered yesterday. It is now assembled and ready for some cuts when the rain stops. Or tomorrow, or.....

The last one a 16" happy homeowner version Poulan lasted 3 years of fairly heavy use, the ignition coil crapped out. It was $116 plus tax when new. The replacement coil which I ordered a week ago is still in the mail... somewhere outside of Duluth.
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Old 10-13-2015, 11:41 AM   #358
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Most anything sold as refurbished.

In that vein I just bought an 18" Pro version of my happy homeowner chain saw for $109.90 delivered to my doorstep a half hour ago by FedEx, which I ordered yesterday. It is now assembled and ready for some cuts when the rain stops. Or tomorrow, or.....

The last one a 16" happy homeowner version Poulan lasted 3 years of fairly heavy use, the ignition coil crapped out. It was $116 plus tax when new. The replacement coil which I ordered a week ago is still in the mail... somewhere outside of Duluth.
Agreed on refurbished tools. I buy power tools from CPO Outlets and everything I have bought (hammer drill, power driver, etc) has been top notch:

CPO Outlets | New and Reconditioned Power Tools, Pressure Washers, Tankless Water Heaters, Vacuums, Ceiling Fans, and more!

My last purchase:

http://www.cpooutlets.com/factory-re...20%26%20Decker
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Old 10-15-2015, 12:01 PM   #359
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Dyson vacuum cleaners.
We have both an upright and a cordless handheld, both bought refurbished.
Mind-bogglingly effective and easy to use.
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Old 10-15-2015, 04:55 PM   #360
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Any Marantz Receiver is a good purchase, I have the 7005 and a few friends bought the newer models and none of us would replace them.
This is old, but my Marantz 6000-series crapped out after three years.
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