Showing posts from July, 2010

Drywall Work at the LittleHouse

  Drywall Work at the LittleHouse by rdpecken on Jul.09, 2010, under Drywall I went up over the 4th of July weekend to try to get the drywall work done in the LittleHouse Bathroom.  I made pretty good progress, and learned some things that will come in handy as we continue the dry walling of the house. Drywall installed and primed The drywall had been hung in the bathroom during a previous trip.  The goal this time was to tape, mud and texture the walls in there.  That will make it ready to start the floor. First, I installed edging around the door and window.  I used the outside corner edging, as it seemed to be a sturdier finish than the “L” type edging.  I hope it doesn’t bite me later, when I install the door and window trim.  I think we will be OK. Edging around door and window Once that was done, I started taping and mudding all of the corners, seams, and edges.  Here is where I started at with blending the edging of the window with the drywall. Blending

Telephone System Install

  Telephone System Install by rdpecken on Jul.07, 2010, under Communications We finally got the phone system installed at the Ranch. It ends up looking like this:   Phone Booth It has a 20 watt solar panel charging a Marine battery to run the whole thing. So, from our last trip up, we concluded that we needed a bigger box or two (or three).  I ended up finding all I needed at Bass Pro Shop in Mesa.  They had a large Ammo Box that was big enough for the 75 Amp Hour battery…   Ammo Box    Battery Box     They also had some smaller ammo boxes with lock rings that were just the right size for the electronics.   Small Ammo Box All of the electronics was fitted into the three boxes, and mounted on a pole.  When I went to plant the pole in the spot chosen on our last trip, I found that there was a ledge of limestone just 6 inches down.  I could not dig through it, so I needed to find a new spot.  I ended up hiking around the property until I found another spot that had 2

More Phone work at the Ranch

  More Phone work at the Ranch by rdpecken on Jul.07, 2010, under Communications While my friend John was up for Ham Radio Field Day, we took some time on Sunday to test the 900 mhz cordless phone link to the cellphone. I sure hope Tara doesn’t see this picture…   Phone Test Setup We found a spot just off the drive where we got two bars on the cellphone.  We set up a temporary link there to see if we could shoot the 900 mhz cordless phone link through the trees. The box contains the Bluetooth Gateway, the 900 mhz base unit and the cellphone.  The inverter for power, and the battery were external for this test.   Gateway Setup So what did we learn?  Yes we could shoot through the trees with our 900 Mhz link.  It was a little spotty with the 1/4 wave stub antenna, and required the beam to make it solid in the LittleHouse.  A call to Tara later turned up a buzzing sound on the line.  We traced that to having the cellphone handset too close to the other electronics

A Trip to Town

  A Trip to Town by rdpecken on Jul.07, 2010, under Area My good friend John was up for ham radio “Field Day” and it was getting hot on Sunday, with not much breeze.  We decided a trip into Seligman to get some ice and maybe a malt was in order..   Sno-Cap Diner   We looked for the back way out to Route 66 from the ranch last year, but were foiled by a locked gate after dozens of miles of backroad 4-wheeling.  Several more miles later, we finally made our way to the highway.  This year we were successful in finding our way out. We headed west down Bullit road, then wound our way a couple more miles west, then turned north.  After about 5 more miles we came upon Pica road.   Pica Road   We followed Pica road all the way to Route 66, where we found a gate, but it wasn’t locked this time.  We entered the highway at Pica Crossing.   Pica Crossing Once we got to town, we made our way to the Sno-Cap to get a malt.   Sno-Cap   Sno-Cap Parking  

June 2010 at the Ranch

  June 2010 at the Ranch by rdpecken on Jul.07, 2010, under Seasons At the end of June, a couple of friends came up for our ham radio “Field Day”.  On Sunday morning, we all went for a hike up our South Mountain, and there are some pretty nice views from up there.  Here are a couple of shots of the homestead from the side of the mountain… LittleHouse from South Mountain and one a little closer up… Littlehouse closer John took some nice scenery shots from the mountain. View over 29 plains      Ridge on South Mountain     Clearing on the Mountain   When we returned to the base camp, John couldn’t resist capturing a Cholla… Cholla Cactus in meadow And we had a skink under the LittleHouse.   Lizard under the house While I was up earlier in the month installing the ham radio vertical antenna, I ran across some 4 o’clocks that caught my eye. 4 o'clock closeup And one from further out… 4 o'clocks

Starting to Drywall the Littlehouse

  Starting to Drywall the Littlehouse by rdpecken on Jul.07, 2010, under Drywall So we’ve come to the stage where we need to finish the walls in the bathroom before we install the facilities. Tara & I came up in mid-May to start on the Drywall for the bathroom. Before we could install any drywall, I needed to finish a couple of electrical projects in there.  The first was the bathroom fan.  The light did not turn on when the switch was thrown, although the fan did work properly. A little investigation found a neutral wire disconnected.  It must have been stuffed up into the assembly where I couldn’t see it when I first installed the fixture. Fan fixture loose wire After connecting the neutral wire, the light started working. The other electrical projects to complete were to add the electrical boxes for the ceiling light and the light above the sink.  We had run out of them in the initial install, and managed to remember to get some more later. Ceiling box f