[Monty Python]I’m not dead yet![/Monty Python]

I’ve been prepping for the holiday we celebrate today all week so no computer time at all except for web comic sanity breaks. I’m so far behind on my emails I might never get caught up.

I hope you got the good stuff this year, because I certainly did. My daughter that still lives in this country got me a new insulated coffee and tea mug set with my initials masked into the decorative coating, in 12 and 32 fluid ounce capacity. This continues a trend in insulated mugs from this daughter over the years. This is the third insulated mug and the first was 24 ounce, the second was 32 ounce to the brim but somewhat less inside the lid, and this year the capacity was 32 ounces under the lid. The next size up is a 44 ounce mug under the lid but that one is hard to track down and I probably won’t get that one for a while because now that we have the dishwasher back up all the older mugs look almost brand new and I have an actual brand new mug. This year’s mugs have really good insulation, Mrs. the Poet made me a cup of tea in the smaller cup and an hour later I still couldn’t drink it because the tea would still burn my mouth, and the sides of the cup were still only slightly above room temperature. I don’t remember exactly where my daughter found the cup and mug set, but she got good ones.

I’m still working on the frame for the Sprint-T, trying to minimize weight while maintaining stiffness, using wall thickness variation so that in places where I’m not constrained by safety rules I use enough material to carry the load with a safety factor, but only that much. That means 0.120″ in the roll cage, 0.060″ in most other places, and 0.39″ in a couple places that are only carrying a very tiny load to brace another structural member against buckling. The fun part of this is when I run through the loads and reduce wall thickness in places where I don’t need the material I frequently find the loads in those members get less as the weight of the surrounding frame is reduced. It’s strange how when you reduce the weight of something the stress that member has to resist also gets reduced, even if the outside forces don’t change. Stresses at the applied load points don’t change, but somehow some stresses at some intersections are drastically reduced. I use a spreadsheet to do the calculations now because I used to forget some intersections, but with the spreadsheet I don’t lose any intersections. Now the trick is to make sure I enter all the intersections into the spreadsheet.

And I have noticed a sharp decline in my writing ability since I lost the translation cleanup gig, more runon sentences and less holding a coherent thought through a paragraph. I also notice I’m having trouble hitting the keys, leaving letters out of words and missing punctuation. Fortunately I spend time proofing before I hit publish, otherwise these posts would look even worse than they do with the bad writing.


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