News Round Up

I just renewed the domain for this blog another year so I might as well pretend I'll get my money's worth by making a post today. And then I'll promptly forget about this space for a few months. Unlike the last several winters, we are getting rain this year, lots of rain!

The photo on the right is Pinto Lake from a few weeks ago when it flooded all the way out to Green Valley Road. This is among the most polluted and nasty water in California, I can't imagine what the bacteria did to the crops it flooded.

In other news, I've now joined the world of 3D printing. Prices have come way down and it is now entirely possible to get a decent printer ready to go out of the box for around $200. I originally ordered an Anet A8 DIY printer kit from a site called GearBest. They took my order, took my money and then let me know they were planning to sit and do nothing for more than week because of the Chinese Lunar New Year. I cancelled that order and bought a Monoprice Select Mini through Amazon that was delivered two days later.

After some initial bumps in coming up to speed, I've now gotten a whole bunch of excellent prints out of it and am making useful and cool stuff. Our long term current printing project is to create a whole bunch of those castle wall blocks and build our own castle. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes and includes gates, towers, fortifications and more. I found the files on Thingiverse which has an amazing variety of cool things to print. It has been lots of fun to have and it makes every morning a bit like Christmas to come down and find something new under the printer nozzle (yeah, not quite as poetic).

I'll post some photos of the castle as it comes together as well as some of the other fun stuff we've printed out like these very cool low-poly(gon) Pokemon! That's Totodile, Bulbasaur and Squirtle in semi-clear and black PLA. There are others but they've been absconded with by my youngest child and may have even been sold! We are ordering some colored filament to keep making them!

Other stuff? Let's see, with the winter storms, it has been a bit harder to get out and surf lately. Poor conditions and timing have made things tough but Sully and I surfed a little last weekend and I went out for a short surf yesterday on water that was too windy and wild to be out long on. Seriously, the abs workout I get just from maintaining my balance is impressive!
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