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Blog Archive 2013 Sep

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Sun 9/1 = By bedtime this evening I got a lot accomplished with my
new computer
Sony Vaio Duo 11 with 11.6" touch screen, Windows 8, 8gb memory and 256gb SSD
like installing Firefox, CoreFTP, Notepad++, BullZip, Open Office and Google Chrome. Now I can manage my website and most other things on the new computer, using my
old computer
Asus 333PC XP netbook
for my checking and reference. Go Daddy, my host has changed its password requirements so I spent 40 minutes sorting out and changing the passwords for the various functions regarding my website
- This afternoon I organized my electronic shopping list and did all my shopping at Winco Foods. On the way I went over to Mildred's to help her with her computer. She was not up to going shopping - mostly due to soreness around her right eye.

Mon 9/2 LABOR DAY = Worked on my
new computer
Sony Vaio Duo 11 with 11.6" touch screen, Windows 8, 8gb memory and 256gb SSD
, specifically Garmin Map Source and my GPS files. I stopped by Fresh & Easy and found a Waldorf salad for $.40 that was expiring today. Perfectly good and such a deal!

Tue 9/3 = It was after dark and I was sure glad to have a high school senior to help me down from the top of the six-foot chain link fence. Here's how I got into that predicament. I had charged my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
batteries and headed to Buffalo Ridge Park for a sunset session but it was being used by kids' sports teams. I found that the southeast corner of the
NCHS
North Canyon High School
west field had enough space for my heli session, with other parts of the field being used by the marching band and guys doing some batting practice. By the time I finished flying, it was dark and the gate by which I had parked my van and through which I had entered was padlocked. I walked about a quarter of a mile (in my flip flops and barefoot) to an east gate and found it also padlocked. Walking back to take the half-mile long way west around to my van, I met the NCHS senior that said there was a gate further east from the one I had found locked that was usually open and that he was going that direction. We found the gate locked! He demonstrated how he used a nearby scrub tree to top the fence and jump the six feet to the ground. With him on the other side of the fence, I handed him my helicase and little folding table and proceeded to climb the tree and sit on the top of the fence. It is incredible how far it was to the ground for an old guy like me, but with his assistance I was able to make it down in fine shape.
- Earlier today I did the monthly Blog roll-over for two months for my website. It took an hour - 18 minutes for Aug-Sep. With my
new computer
Sony Vaio Duo 11 with 11.6" touch screen, Windows 8, 8gb memory and 256gb SSD
I learned how manage and modify the desktop and studied its various power settings. I sure like its
SSD
Solid State Drive instead of a regular spinning hard drive
, as It takes 12 seconds to shut down and 15 seconds to boot up. Sleeping/hibernating and unsleeping/unhibernating takes 4-5 seconds. Launching applications and opening files is almost instantaneous.
- Another milestone accomplished - sort of. I finished watching the 60 monologues I had recorded during my spring kiteboarding trip. All I got was 30 days worth of Jay Leno and Jimmy Fallon because that's all that would fit on a 10-hour DVD. It was like a humorous walk back in time.

Wed 9/4 = This morning I organized my New Computer Questions for Data Doctors and installed the PhoenixRC program on the computer.
- Today's trip was this afternoon. The first stop was Data Doctors, where I got most all my questions answered in about 15 minutes by Charles and Justin. The latter thinks I have a pretty cool (and expensive) computer.
- The second stop was
Dahlia
my Phoenix rental house located on Dahlia Drive
to check each of the sprinkler heads but the grass was to tall. Net stop was Big Lots at 32st & Cactus where I bought some jam and a hand can opener that really works as I found out in the store with a can of tomato soup I bought. Next was 24 Hour Fitess for a medium-heavy legs workout. Then to Gangplank to move videos to my
Vaio
Sony Vaio Duo 11 with 11.6" touch screen, Windows 8, 8gb memory and 256gb SSD
and short cuts for them onto its desktop.
- I topped off the evening with a heli session in the 24-Hour Fitness aerobics room.

Thu 9/5 = It's about time! You see, I have been catching up on things from while I was gone and working on projects around home here, but not in a well-organized manner. Today I finally put my mind to the proverbial grindstone and updated my Vacation Return Do.doc file which helps me list the things that are important, to prioritize them and lay them out a week at a time. As a result, today I:

Fri 9/6 = Under the auspices of Duet, I took Kathleen to her physical therapist. While there I updated my website with the available Wi-Fi.
- This evening I watched an online video in preparation for tomorrow's
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
repair.

Sat 9/7 = I finally caught up on the all my downloaded talk show MP3s, including 48 hours of the Bob Brinker Sunday talk shows that I had my MP3 player automatically record during my four-month kiteboarding trip.
- I had to reset my electronic date stamp after replaced its clock battery.
- The new
Nano
our third Blade Nano nCPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
swashplate that I had sent to me on Hatteras Island was nowhere to be found so took the one out of my Nano#1 and put it in my current Nano#3. Of course after I completed the project I found the new swashplate.s - I got to bed late, about 11:30, which nixed flying my Nano at Buffalo Ridge Park early tomorrow morning.

Sun 9/8 = Kindle cool stuff I discovered this morning included the incredible power of its search feature. It will search all items in the Kindle when searching from the home screen and you can arrange the results by number of hits, recent, title or author. Also the Kindle supports multi-touch gestures, and the new one for me is the pinch/spread to quickly zoom and change the text size. Another thing is the BACK button, which allows you go go WAY BACK to things you may have been reading months ago. I transferred a bunch of MP3 files to my Kindle.
- Also this morning I vacuumed the house and my G-gauge tracks (to get the dust off before I run my trains), dusted some counters and the top of the refrigerator.
- Jamie from Moon Valley Nursery stopped by this afternoon to give me some myoporum advice. Her conclusion: all six are completely completely dead DEAD! but now would be a good time to start new ones and the 5-gallon ones would have a better chance of surviving than the one gallon ones.
- Later in the day I flew my
SIM
PhoenixRC flight simulator that contains my Nano nCPX and uses my DX7s controller
for four flights, caught up on this blog and got to bed early     :) Sleep Number bed set on 70 for this week.

Mon 9/9 = This morning I got up a little early and, after breakfast, drove the the buffalo Ridge park to fly my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
, but there was a slight, fine, rain, so I went on to LA Fitness and had three battery flights in a raquetball court and a fourth in the basketball court - my first flight there and the first time it was empty - except for Luis dry-mopping the floor. He liked my heli. Then a shower and a medium and slow torso workout.
- While I was in the gym it started to rain and became heavy. I read See You At the Top on my phone for about a half hour, then ventured out to my van in the rain. My dump-bucket-electronic rain gauge told me that the rain at my house altogether amounted to 1.9" in the last 24 hours. The heaviest rain was .87" between 10:22 and 11:22 this morning. Total rain in the 19 days since I applied the preemergence spray: 2.1".
- This evening I had a stimulating visit with Herman of Semeruco Landscaping Design and Maintenance. He helped me notice that my drip water had been turned off - probably two months ago by the HOA president as a result of a leak to the west of my driveway. The president did not tell me that he had turned it off, otherwise I could have had it repaired and my plants would not have died.

Tue 9/10 = This morning I took Gia to two doctors under the auspices of Duet.
- Mostly financial stuff the balance of the day: I contacted two realtors, trying to figure out how much my properties (don't get excited, I only have five, and three of those are vacant land) are worth - figuring my net worth in preparation for meeting with a financial planner Thursday. At 4:00 I watched a Vanguard webcast, How Successful People Acheive Their Financial Goals.
- This evening I flew my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
in the Fitness 1 boxing room. The heli is toilet bowling quite badly

Wed 9/11 = This morning at Buffalo At Buffalo Ridge Park, I flew my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
before lunch time after switching from bullet to straight rotor blades and tightening the feathering spindle. The heli is still toiletbowling.
- I did not make it to Gangplank this evening, preparing for tomorrows meeting at Foothills Financial Planning, affiliated with Garret Planning Network.

Thu 9/12 = This morning, at
Dahlia
my Phoenix rental house located on Dahlia Drive
, I fixed four sprinkler heads and repaired a ground wire so that stations four and five would operate, finished up the financial questionnaire for Foothills, and in the afternoon met with Kevin O'Reilly for a free get-acquainted meeting. It seemed to me that he was more interested in getting me to spend hundreds of dollars on his consultation fees than he was interested in being helpful. Just my opinion.
- Later, I gave up flying my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
at Buffalo Ridge after only 4 minutes and one battery. The main rotor motor has not always been self starting lately and toward the last of this session the heli would not climb, even out of its own ground effect. I went home to Rockwood, replaced the main rotor motor (I had two spares), loosened the nut on the feathering spindle and finished the off the remaining three batteries at home with the new motor and much improved performance. I did some experimenting, switching back and forth between bullet and straight blades, and noticed no difference in toiletbowling (at this time hardly any, probably fixed by loosening the feathering spindle) and maybe a little smoother, more stable operation with the bullet blades. Any way, for now I'll stick with the bullet blades. Also they are fluorescent orange and will be easier to spot on the ground after a crash.

Fri 9/13 = Started and ended the day with my heli: This morning at Buffalo Ridge Park and with the bullet blades installed in 0 to 11.6 mph winds, I flew my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
. Then just before bedtime I flew it in the Fitness 1 aerobics room

Sat 9/14 = I got up early this morning and was out at the 19th Ave heli field before seven. I saw flying friends from back in March and April. I also met Brent, Robby and Bob (older than me, believe it or not!). On my third
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
flight with battery G, I took off from my hand, flew around for four minutes and landed back on my hand with the heli never touching the ground.
- No Hamfeast this evening cuz I joined
George & Cindy
younger brother and his wife who live in Mesa, Arizona
for After All These Years... I Still Hate You at Mesa Encore Theatre's Black Box on Brown. Entertaining and pretty funny.

Sun 9/15 = Today was Myoporum Day. Herman planted the six 5-gallon plants I bought two days ago from Moon Valley Nursery. While he was doing the transplanting, he put me to work trimming the dead wood out of the west Natal Plum in front of my library windows. I had heard before, but forgot, that dead wood will attract termites and other pests. Also I learned that when transplanting, one should score the root ball vertically about four places with a utility knife. This shocks the roots into wanting to grow outward, making the plants grow better. Herman was delightful to visit with while we were working.
- After an early supper my day's trip included flying my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
at a new location for me: Coyote Basin Park - the largest grass area I have found yet. I met Jeff there, flying his 3-foot Piper Cub and his home-made tri-copter - all using high-tech brushless motors.
- Then on to Winco foods for my semi-monthly grocery shopping. Mildred did not go along, having gotten a lot of food yesterday through her church.
- To bed with my Sleep Number set on 35 for this week.

Mon 9/16 = This morning I went saw my
PCP
Dr Gergi Dwivedi, my Primary Care Physician
about a hard lump between my breast bone and a right rib. She ordered it x-rayed. (Her nurse phoned Tuesday and everything was normal).
- Around noon I laid in the sun for 18 minutes, then, through Duet, took Phoebe to see her dermatologist, visiting with her and working on this blog while waiting. After an early supper I checked out kiteboarding in Peru (probably too big of waves for me at this point), Margarita and Thailand, finished up this blog and flew my
simulator
PhoenixRC flight simulator that contains my Nano nCPX and uses my DX7s controller
with emphasis on trying circles (with crashes).

Tue 9/17 = Today's big event was preparing for and visiting with an old friend, Rebecca Gaylor who is the CEO of Active Money Management here in Phoenix. It was neat to get caught up with her. She also looked over my investment and financial situation, which I really appreciated. In payment I made a donation to her favorite charity, the Shoebox Ministry, Inc. which provides much-need personal and toiletry items for the homeless here in Phoenix. It is good to know that y donation will provide toiletries for about 12 people, according to my visit with Laura Borgeson there.
- On the way home I stopped by Frank's Hobby House and looked at some high-tech battery chargers, did some research on them this evening and added them to my To Buy list. This list keeps me from impulsing and wasting my money on things that I really won't use. - I went out to the Phoenix Reach 11 soccer fields this morning and found out that they do not allow RC flying there, so I went back to the Coyote Basin Park to fly. I got there about 10:30 and found a wind gusting to 14 mph. The wind was no problem, but my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
had low power - barely able to gain altitude with full throttle using batteries E F & G. Battery H, which has not been doing too well, wouldn't even spool up without unbinding. Back home at Rockwood, I got the heli to at least hover for 2:34 minutes in ground effect before unbinding. That, after recharging. My little charger showed a full charge, but the voltage didn't match.

Wed 9/18 = Today I did a little more Lipo battery charger research, found how to search and replace invisible characters in a document (spaces, carriage returns and tabs etc.), organized the macros from the old MSDOS Works spreadsheet I have been using for my check register, updated the blog on my website and read about how the SIPC protects your investments.
- Aobut supper time I headed down to Chandler to do a medium-heavy, legs workout and fly my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
in the 24-Hour Fitness aerobics room, experimenting with batteries F and H and then to Gangplank for website, tec work and to do another experimental flight with my Nano using battery H. Speaking of H, earlier in the day it took three charge tries to get H to accept a charge. Then flew relatively well at 24-hour Fitness.

Thu 9/19 = Mostly worked on my
Vaio
new Sony Vaio Duo 11 with 11.6" touch screen, Windows 8, 8gb memory and 256gb SSD
today, transfering some old DOS checking account balancing files. I ran into a Java roadblock trying to get Open Office macros to work.
- I DID get my files on the Vaio backed up. The only problem, is any time I plug in one of my hard drives the Vaio gloms onto the drive, refusing ejection, showing it as a system drive. My solution, so far, is to shut the computer down with the drive connected and then disconnect the drive. I found all sorts of very technical possible solutions, but, when I have time, will try reinstalling the USB drivers and see if that solves the problem.
- Only one
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
flight today. I am doing some experimentation with recharging and multiple flights with battery H.

Fri 9/20 = Today I prepared for the two-day
FIRC
AOPA Flight Instructor Refresher Course
that starts tomorrow morning at 7:30, by organizing my toiletries, fixing five meals and firing up my little refrigerator - all so I will have the option, if it is not too warm, of spending the night in my van down at the Phoenix Airport Sheraton instead of driving the 23 miles home just to turn around and drive back for the FIRC which starts again at 7:00 am Sunday.
- Herman came over around noon to check out my myoporums. He said they were doing OK and to keep running my drip system for 45 minutes daily. With the 4-gallon emitters, that means each myoporum plant will receive three gallons of water. My natal plums will receive .75 gallons each time, with their one-gallon emitters.
- I emailed the following to the creator of the neat T3chDad software I use on my cell phone to keep track of my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
flights and the corresponding batteries used.
Congratulations on a neat program. It certainly beats my old tally marks.

Bugs - related to crashes (blush).
1) When scrolling with "Flight Details" from one flight to another, if I view a "Crash Details" screen, all subsequent flights show up as, "Crash Details" even when they were not crashes.
2) It is it is impossible to change the crash status of a flight with the "Edit Flight" page as there is no "Crash" button to select or deselect.

Suggestion: Provide an "Export Data" option, as to a text file - preferably with an option for coma or tab delimiters. The most logical location for this would be on the "Options" page beside Dropbox. However, from a programming standpoint it would probably be easiest to add it to the bottom of the "More Options" page.

What do YOU think?
A Loyal User,

(I got a reply back from Bob Templeton Mon, 9/24. My current version is v3.1.8, the latest version is v3.1.12 and v4.0 will be next).

Sat 9/21 = Up this morning at 6:40 to spend the rest of the day in the
AOPA
Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association
FIRC
AOPA Flight Instructor Refresher Course
at the Phoenix Airport Sheraton Hotel.
- After we got out about 5:00, I ate supper while my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
batteries charged and then attempted to fly at Tempe's Clark Park. There was not enough umph (that is a scientific helicopter term) to even lift off in ground effect.
- I headed to bed in my van after an arms workout in the Sheraton gym. I expect it will be a warm night, but my little ceiling fan should help.
- It was a hot night here in Phoenix! About 11:40pm I had too much and headed out for the 23 miles back home to my house, which thermostat I keep at 82 degrees in the summer, making my bedroom about 83 degrees - ten degrees cooler than my van was. I had given the van a fair try though, running the engine and A/C some before I went to bed and using the ceiling fan and a spray bottle of distilled water.

Sun 9/22 = The FIRC today was from 7am to almost 5pm. Andy and Mike did a good job.
- On the way home I drove over to Duncan's RC on 35th Ave. Byran solved the umph problem in a few seconds by pushing the main rotor gear up against the bottom berring so I'd get positive pitch on the rotor rather than pushing the main shaft up. Now my heli flies normally. Why didn't I think to check that!? Back home, I finished off battery E, which I had charged for testing.

Mon 9/23 = This morning about 8:00 I went out to Coyote Basin Park to fly my now correctly-working
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
, along with Jeff and Ron. Things wet pretty well. Ron was impressed with my skill (little does he know) when I landed the heli back in my hand in my hand. Cool!
- Back home I spent some time researching RC heli battery chargers and most of the rest of the day working on my CheckBok spread sheet. I am having to plug in all the formulas, since they were not copied over from my old DOS spreadsheet. Copying down the balance column was no big deal, but Open Office Calc can not have text in locations where it expects a numeric value. My old DOS spreadsheet just ignored the text so I had all sorts of notes and other information there. I started the tedious process of eliminating all the text that were in those cells - for all 302 rows of the spreadsheet.

Tue 9/24 = I got up at 6:30 this morning and after my morning routine headed to the Coyote Basin Park, where there were about six other RC enthusiasts - mostly small airplanes & flying wings, but one bug micro quadcopter - all electric. I managed four battery sessions.
- The project that I hate is cleaning the inside of my van windows. It requires a lot of reaching, stretching and extended exertion. I got 'em all done while waiting for a ride home from Auto Tune. After the heli flights I had driven to Auto Tune with a laundry list of things for them to check on my van. Also cool!
- The rest of the day here at home I did more work on CheckBok, my website, researching heli battery chargers, some financial stuff and the UnitedHealth
ASRS
Arizona State Retirement System
Passport Program, which hopefully will get me medical coverage when I am on my future domestic kiteboard trips (other than emergency rooms).

Wed 9/25 = The news from Auto Tune was not too good. Nothing is urgent but the driver's front half shaft and wheel bearing need to be replaced, the engine's compression is down to 90 (10 psi below recommended minimum) and the rear bearings on the sliding doors are shot.
- This evening I drove down to Chandler. At 24-Hour Fitness I did an arms workout and then flew my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
in their aerobics room until they chased me out. Then to Gangpank where I finished flying out my heli batteries through some hallways, and worked on computer stuff.
- Why did the bicycle fall over? It was two-tired!

Thu 9/26 = Today's trip started early with flying at Coyote Basin Park with a congenial group of RC guys.
- Then to O'Reilly's to get information about oil for my van. I never have had to add oil between oil changes, until about a month ago. Brian, the oil honcho there, explained that getting one quart low between oil changes is within the specs for the Dodge Grand Caravan. Also that he would recommend going one viscosity heavier than that recommended by the manufacturer, considering that the van has 270k miles on it. I bought a quart of oil and put half of it in the van's engine.
- Then to Discount Tire where I ordered another set of BIG tires for my van - Cooper this time, which are rated at 50k miles. Nelson, as always, was very helpful.
- The rest of the day I spent on my CheckBok and heli battery charger research and took a nap because I knew I was going to get to bed a little late. Why late? Glad you asked.
- The monthly
ARA
Arizona Repeater Association (ham radio operators)
meeting was a tour of the Hall of Flame of the National Historical Fire Foundation. The history of firefighting was very interesting, from the bucket to the modern fire engine.

Fri 9/27 = I flew my first quadcopter - at Coyote Basin Park, courtesy of Jim and his little Blade Nano QX quadcopter.
- Maybe Jim felt sorry for me, as I almost lost my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
earlier. I was on Battery G when I lost sight of the heli. After a few seconds of unsuccessfully looking for it in the sky and having no idea in which direction it was headed, I switched the rotor motor off so it would fall to the ground. I still saw nothing. I spent about 20 minutes walking a serpentine pattern looking for it. With the help of Joe, a maintenance man, and Jim I finally found it in the grass area about 100 yards from where I had lost sight of it - fortunately not in a tree or on the nearby freeway. While looking for it all sorts of thoughts went through my head, including replacing it, getting a little quadcopter instead, going home and crying or all of the above.
- Jim had flown his little quadcopter until the battery was depleted but I had a remaining charge on two of mine, and the two birds use the same battery. I suggested that Jim use my two batteries in his quadcopter. He thought it was a good idea and then asked me if I wanted to fly it. How could I refuse! The quad was pretty stable, and flew much like my Nano does. Thanks, Jim! My Nano and
DX7s
Spektrum RC controller
had stopped talking to each other and I would not rebind.
- The rest of the day I finally finished the huge job of manually converting my CheckBok file from the Microsoft Works 5.0 spreadsheet WKS format to the more modern XLS format, which earned me the reward - buying an new heli battery charger. Before I settled on the iCharger 106B+, I read some reviews and checked out two additional chargers. Bedtime came before I had a chance to order it, so I'll have something to look forward to tomorrow.
- I was prepared to tumble into bed - early - until I realized that I had done nothing with my website yet today, so did these last three days of blogging.

Sat 9/28 = Today I hit the weeds with Roundup spray, front and back, checked out a van - great size and features, but too high for my garage and no inside access from the front to the back.
- This afternoon and evening I drove down south to Hobby Action in Tempe where they helped me diagnose the problem with my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
(servo socket half pulled off from the main circuit board), bought a new main circuit board and a canopy, then flew the heli at nearby Kiwanis Park.
- Out to Gilbert then to the Saturday-Night Hamfeast. Only four of us were there.

Mon 9/30 = This morning I flew my
Nano
fourth RC micro helicopter: Blade Nano CPx that has a tail rotor, no flybar and true collective positive and negative pitch
at the Coyote Basin Park, as usual. Unusual was a mid-air collision between Ron's intricate balsa-wood military model and Jim's (I think) Styrofoam SEL Cessna. The Styrofoam won.
- Later I ordered an iCharger 206b as a reward for getting my checking account converted from a WKS to an XLS format, got my van's oil changed at Auto Tune, bought 20 VT ETF shares and put the iCharger I am buying up on my Technology web page.
- At 6:30 this evening
Harold
Harold Dean Hayes, my techie X brother-in-law
and I met back at the Coyote Basin Park. I flew his AR Drone quadcopter, balancing a glass of water on the top at first, until its battery ran down and then my Nano until just about dark. Then we headed to my house where we teched out with the PhoenixRC simulator program on my new computer, my Nano and a pair of very wide angle binoculars that he had made. Interesting evening.

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