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About Ephemerella

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  • Birthday 12/16/1957

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    Southern New Hampshire

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  1. Goose biots are the feather fibers from the leading edge of wing feathers. Take a single edge razor and cut the stem (rachis), and keep the side with the shorter fibers - biots. Some cut the stem so only a small bit of it (maybe 1/4 of it) is attached to the biot fibers.
  2. They say (read it on the internet so it must be true 😜) that it smells like burning hair - silk and hair are both protein based.
  3. Tying there...drop by if you are going. Peter Simonson
  4. Unlimited resources. But... What I found with that most recent tragedy in Maine, was that once-reliable news outlets (including those that publish exclusively on the internet) were so rushed to be "first with the story" that they published erroneous information. It would appear they sacrificed fact-checking for expediency (and probably advertising revenue). Some of the errors should have been caught by anyone with a modicum of experience or education or familiarity with the location. Further, other news outlets would republish these erroneous items, no doubt using the fact that someone else published the (erroneous) item as confirmation. Now here I sound like an old curmudgeon. This is a real deterioration of news media. I note this is independent of the political leanings of the various news outlets. My father spent his career in the news media business and to him it was important that the reporters and editors were able to substantiate the facts as published, both as a business strategy (keeps away expensive litigation) and as a way to maintain the reputation and integrity of their news outlet. I'm guessing today's news media is more concerned with short term profitability than long term reputation and survival of the business. As a consequence, while there is more information available, it is less reliable. Also, since it may be difficult to trace the source of the published information, one cannot easily discern whether any report is from independent sources or independently collected information, or is re-publication of someone else's erroneous report. Not sure what the solution is here, other than to not believe everything published until there are sufficient number of independent sources stating the same information. That, and, of course, not buying products advertised on outlets with unreliable reporting.
  5. John, Nice fly. Good to see you back on the forum...I found a few postings from "Isonychia" from 2008 that are yours, I believe...
  6. Given you can buy a 1000W unit at Wally World for about $80 or less, I'd say replace it. I suspect the retail cost of the parts is driven by the cost of storage and a large number of unique parts - the parts that fail on microwaves typically are the handles, keypads, keypad plastic overlay - all unique to each brand and model. The electronic innards are often the same across brands. The sad fact is that a microwave lasts between 4 and 10 years, and then it begins to have parts failures. Washing machines (the old-school top leaders, anyway) on the other hand are mostly made by 1 manufacturer and have common parts regardless of model or "quality" implied by the brand, which are cheap to stock compared to the number of washing machines out there, and their unit cost ($400 -$1500). Except the computers and other wizardry in the control panels, which are unique to brand and model - and hence ridiculously priced. So one can generally keep an old school top-loader in repair for 15+ years easily, and there's a you-tube video produced by parts suppliers for nearly every diagnosis and repair. Just watch your phone as you slowly dissect and repair the washer following the on-screen pro.
  7. Thanks Steve - I've enjoyed this site since about 2005 or so and seen its ups and downs. Your hard work is much appreciated - even if it did seem like work to you. Wishing you all the best, and please don't be a stranger. -Peter
  8. Even the venerated Thompson A vise had a design weakness. The pin used as the fulcrum for the clamping lever (handle) would fatigue. Many years ago, replacement pins were available, for not much more than the postage, but they too suffered the same fate. I eventually replaced the 3rd failed pin with a hardened roll pin, which still works, although I have not used it in years, having moved on to an HMH Spartan (one of the early versions).
  9. I retired after 42 years as an engineer, mostly with the same defense company (OK, it got bought 3 times with accompanying name changes). With one exception, every time I was fed up or bored, something appeared at my office door and I was able to take advantage of the opportunity. (Early in my career I left for a year to work elsewhere, and came back.) Not so much advancement into management (although I did that too), but interesting technology, lots of innovation, and some really interesting people to work with. By the end of my career I had spent an inordinate amount of time as a project troubleshooter - mostly technical, but also management type problems as well. These were mainly projects deemed important but hopeless. Remedying these projects gone awry took way too many 60 hour weeks, and lots of stress. I found the best times were motivating technical folks by spending time in the lab with them, asking the "dumb questions" and often getting the "uh-oh" look when one of the dumb questions sparked an idea on the nature of the problem. I found 90% of the people I worked with (or led their team) could be easily motivated by being valued, listened to, and removing constraints on their ability to actually make progress. Almost never had to tell someone to do something - the idea was to get them to see something needed to be done and enable them to do it. Apparently managers and technical leads before me did not subscribe to this concept. Plus most of my teams, nerds like me, enjoyed having a boss that was technical and interested in how they had created the design that was part of the troubled project. The other 10% were removed from the project one way or another. It appears this approach worked, and I found that I enjoyed working with the folks on the project, and it was reported that they enjoyed working for me. This meant long-term connections with smart people, and we could and did call on each other for help if needed. So I miss that. My own bosses were generally OK, but my position was more or less independent, so no day-to-day direction from most of them - a good thing. But I also observed that over the 40 some-odd years, the company's approach to employees had changed from perhaps paternalistic but mutually supportive in the long term, to a more transactional (i.e. we pay you for that, so just do it) and more short term - things like making health insurance worse, and making it harder for young engineers to get a graduate education on the company's dime in the evenings (that benefit has a ROI to the company of less than a year, since the courses are directly related to the work - so no real management excuse for making it harder to access). And management whining about the millennials (they are actually smarter than I am, they recognized the transactional shift early in their careers and decided they could play that game as well). It was time to say good-bye to it all. That was 20 months ago. So what's different? A little more time fishing, tying, tying at shows. Much better conversations with my better half. Lots of deferred maintenance and restoration on my house (it's about 150 yrs old). Just rebuilt my table saw. I get up at 6 most days (a habit from when we had workmen at the house last year) - beats 4:45 am from my working days - and take my time at breakfast to read before starting my "honey do" list or my own list of projects and tasks. Or go fishing, or plan a fishing trip away. I do still keep a notebook with my to-do list and notes, but now it has measurements and dimensions for various woodworking projects, or notes on stuff to buy to repair something, or ideas on flies to be tied, instead of engineering analyses and the like. No weekly reports or presentations to angry customers or clueless executives. Money is different, since I now have to pay myself from retirement savings, etc. but not too hard to get used to. These things are all what I want to do (or my better half wants me to do), not someone else. I'm much more relaxed. I'm not short with my temper anymore. I spend more time with my granddaughters (1, 3, and 6), and take a walk every day with the dog - some days a nice 90-minute fast walk on a nearby trail. I enjoy the sounds and smells of the morning and the sounds of all the birds, and savor how the plants grow lush in the spring and summer, and fade in fall - and enjoy the snow in the winter. I recommend it to you all.
  10. And NOT working today. I note that one can sometimes click on other pages from the main forum list of topics to get to another page. But once in a topic one is stuck.
  11. Blue and Gold Macaw is the tail feather of the blue and gold macaw. The upper side (on the bird) is blue and the underside is yellowish. You'll want 2, one from each side of the tail, and of the same size. Or if you can get a center tail (has same length fibers on each side of the stem (rachis). Look on ebay or at a pet bird store. Can't be imported or exported but readily available inside the US.
  12. Tying at Marlborough and the Edison show. The Edison show used to be about 3x the size of Marlborough show. Last year the Edison show was about 2/3 of its usual size, but I attributed that to the "hangover" from COVID. Should be back to the typical size this year, based on the number of celebrities and fly tyers listed. The shows generally only list the exhibitors when they publish the map, about 2-3 weeks before the show. No idea why they wait so long - ask Ben Furimsky (Fly FIshing Show manager) when you see him there. The CFFA show was about 1/2 to 2/3 the size of the Marlborough show, when it last occurred (2019?). It is shorter in duration (6 hrs on one day, not 8 hrs/day for 3 days). And it does not have the number of presentations and speakers. However, it is a friendly show, with a relaxed atmosphere. It has several interesting small vendors and good bargains on unusual items. And a bunch of tyers. It's small enough that allows for spending time with each of the tyers. I'm tying at that show also. Hope to see you at one or more of the shows. -Peter www.petersimonsonflydresser.com
  13. Glad you found somebody to work on the door. Part of the problem may be the construction of older mobile homes. My understanding is that the newest ones are built like a standard stick-built home with 2x6 wooden framing, standard sized doors and windows, and real insulation. Little risk of inducing failures when replacing doors and windows. Older ones seem to have metal framing roughly 2x3 or less, use water absorbing sheathing under sheet metal or vinyl skin, little insulation, and often have particle-board flooring, which is a sponge. A series of federal HUD construction standards over the years has transformed the mobile home into essentially a code-compliant house. Except the foundation and under-home support, and location of electrical metering. Code-compliant (on-site built or manufactured) homes need a cellar or slab with frost-walls (or an Alaska slab floating on gravel) and the meter is usually attached to the home, while mobile homes have a slab in the North and are typically on blocks above the slab or ground, metering detached from the home. Other than that the only difference now seems to be whether the HUD or the state/local building codes apply.
  14. Old tying thread or tying thread exposed to sunlight will fail. Usually black thread is the worst, but other colors also fall victim to this deterioration. Check your bobbin, chuck the spool of thread and get back to tying. As others have said, use ceramic tube or a bobbin with a ceramic bead at the tip.
  15. That's great! A new enthusiastic fishing buddy for you!
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