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Archive for 2009

Zebu Cart

Zebu Cart, Madagascar (HDR) Louise and I just returned from a two month vacation/honeymoon. The first month was spent in East Africa, unicycling about 550km from Nairobi, Kenya to Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. The tour was organized through a kiwi group called Escape Adventures. I took a lot of photos when in East Africa, but concentrated on doing a lot of video of the unicycling, and I hope to put together a little documentary on the adventure. I also took a lot of notes on the adventure; mainly so I can remember what was happening. The second month was spent... [read more]


Some Africa pictures from others…

I don’t have any pictures of my own off my camera yet, but here are a few from some others on our Africa unicycle tour. I frequently put on mini performances for people. Here I am in Lushoto: The whole set from Matthew Wegner: All Pics on Flickr


Africa has zero free wifi

Well! I was hoping to update my blog from my phone using free wifi spots, but i ran into two problems. First of all, my blog is ancient wordpress, and doesn’t work with my iPhone’s WordPress app. Second, and more importantly, there is no free wifi at all. Africa has been great. We travelled from Kenya to Tanzia and Zanzibar. I’ll be documenting each day when I get back.


Off to Africa for Unicycling

Today, Louise and I are heading out to Africa for a unicycle tour from Kenya to Tanzania. After that, we will be taking a trip to Madagascar for some more touring! I’ll be without my computer, so most blog posts will be via the iPhone or someone else’s computer.


HDR shot of my lathe

A South Bend 13″ Tool Room Lathe from the 50’s:


Fastest speed on a unicycle

A frequent question I get is how fast can I ride on my unicycle. This morning, while riding to work, I hit my fastest speed. 26.1mph, downhill. Really quite insane, as crashing at that speed wouldn’t be fun.


Zip line to the treehouse

I’m still working on it, but here’s a short video of some of it.


AJ’s handlebar.

Some pictures of a handlebar I last built. I prefer making the T run vertical; it avoids having the horizontal tube collect water. The thing is light!


Greening my wedding

I want to cut down on the environmental impact for our wedding. So, I ordered biodegradable plates, cups and silverware from http://letsgogreen.biz/– I’ll find out how long they really take to biodegrade as I plan on composting them myself. [EDIT: spelling of greening actually has a r in it]


Wedding Treehouse – platform sneak peak

Well! Today I finished the base platform. This is all I’m planning on doing for the wedding. Well, this and adding stairs. Sometime after honeymoon I will turn it into a real treehouse with walls and a roof. It turned out pretty neat, but a little shaky in the horizontal plane. I had let the brackets cool by themselves and didn’t harden them by quenching in water (or oil); I think this made them stay slightly flexible, which I thought would be a good thing. In addition, the half-circle design isn’t as strong as a complete circle which would prevent... [read more]


The Wedding Treehouse – beam install

The first step was to install the top brackets. Well, first had to get the proper bolts. I wanted to use 3/4″ thick (radius) by 8″ long lag bolts — galvanized to support the weather. When I built my first treehouse, I just bought them from OSH or San Lorenzo Lumber. Now a days, we have Home Depot, and still OSH. Home depot doesn’t really carry large lag bolts, and OSH has a wider selection, but no 3/4″ lag bolts. Both places have coarse thread 3/4″ ungalvanized bolts, and that was my only real option. I could order something from... [read more]


The Wedding Treehouse – Bracket Fabrication

I bought some 4” wide by 1/4” thick steel from SIMS metal in San Jose with the intent on using it to make brackets. Now, 4” would be perfect if I used 4x4s for the knee braces, which I would ideally want to use. However, I have 2x8s for free, so I’m going to use those. To create a bracket that holds them, I need 2” wide pieces of steel. At first, I figured I’d just cut the 4” pieces down to size, but I quickly discovered how hard that was to do with a sawzall or jigsaw (with metal... [read more]


The Wedding Treehouse – Updated Plans

I decided to redo my wedding treehouse concept. I wanted something far enough out in front of the trees to suffice as a proper area to stand for the ceremony, and the typical umbrella treehouse design seemed like a good idea, so I went with it. This design can be seen in some old treehouse books, such as Nelson’s “Home Tree Home” (the basic treehouse building bible — I used it when I built my last big treehouse about 10 years ago). I’m opting for a half-round treehouse for several reasons: 1. Cost/wood — a lot of the wood I’m... [read more]


Tree Top Builders

I would like to give a big thanks to Dan Wright, from Tree Top Builders out in PA. Dan has been building some amazing treehouses for quite some time and is well experienced in the art of treehouse building. He offered to talk to me a bit about my new “wedding treehouse” design and gave me some great feedback for how I could improve it. He quickly pointed out how my lower-horizontal brace would easily be over-stressed by the knee braces, and it would need to be really beefy wood (or made of steel) in order to withstand the forces... [read more]


The latest unicycle handle

I’ve been using my newest unicycle handle for quite a while, and I’m really happy with it. I’ve designed it to fit my geared KH24, and I want to make a newer version that fits on my carbon fiber seatbase for my geared KH36. Maybe I’ll get around to it sometime soon, but for now, here’s the existing one. Side view: Top view: top view detail of front bar ends, with brake adapter. The brake won’t fit on the bar ends, so I created an adapter: The close bar ends are my “power grips” for climbing steep hills and riding... [read more]


Project Hutchinson: The carpeted upstairs guest room

The remodeling project continues! We ordered carpet after I finished painting the built-in dresser frames. Unfortunately it was a big ordeal when we went through Home Depot. the color and manufacturer that happened to make the stainmaster carpet we wanted had a two week lead time. No problem. Two weeks later they call us and said they made it but didn’t pass inspection. We figured that was okay, and just decided to stick with it. Two weeks further on they called again and said the same thing! So, at this point we picked out a different color/kind that was manufactured... [read more]


My treehouse fell down!

Well, a few weeks ago it finally happened. My treehouse fell down! Well, not entirely; about 3/4 of the floor fell out. I took a few pictures with my iPhone; I’ll probably be going back in a week or so to do more cleanup and scavenging. Here’s a view from the ground, looking up at the treehouse. The sink is literally hanging by a thread (the pipes!): A view from inside the treehouse: Another view from underneath: The floor fell down and rotated on top of the things in the treehouse: So, what happened? Well, a few weeks ago we... [read more]


Building a new treehouse

I decided to build a mini-treehouse for Louise and I to get married on. We worked on clearing some of the brush off our land where we want the ceremony to be, and Louise mentioned that I should build a platform for us to stand on so we were level. I figured if I was going to go to the trouble of building a temporary platform, that I might as well build it up in some redwood trees as a mini-treehouse. It will start out as a tree platform, but eventually I may add walls and a ceiling to make... [read more]


Cool welding goggles

They aren’t as dark as my glasses and work well for brazing. Very old school.


KH 36 Unicycle

My new road unicycle is setup and ready to ride! My old road unicycle was a Nimbus 36 frame – but, I had had dremmeled out the bearing holders to fit the 42mm bearings for the Schlumpf geared hub, which was a bad idea as it destroys the bearings in the hub. Luckily, I won a KH36 from the “Ride the Lobster” unicycle race. I finally got it a few months ago, but I still had not gotten my hub back from Switzerland until recently. So, I finally had all the pieces, and decided I wanted to paint the frame... [read more]


Yet another unicycle handlebar

I made another unicycle handlebar. This time, taking some ideas from other people and using an old bike seat tube with a T welded on front so I could mount bar ends on it. It works great on the muni, and feels really good for longer distance riding. I used it quite a bit last Saturday when Jason and I did a regular muni ride. Mounted, unpainted: With some paint slapped on: Bronson Silva, of Silva Cycles gave me a couple of brass rods so I could give brazing a try. And oh boy, I love brazing! It is much... [read more]


Louise’s Graduation Projects

Louise is in beauty school at a nice Redkin academy of salon professionals. She got to do her graduation ceremony early, since they have new students every 8 weeks and combine some of the graduations together for various reasons. Part of the process was for her to find some models and do their makeup and hair for a little runway model show. Louise found two great models, and here is some of the shots of her work: Louise and Reese: One of her two models;


Pete Nelson’s latest treehouse

From his blog: http://petenelson.wordpress.com/2009/01/05/a-treehouse-north-of-seattle-2/ Just amazing, as usual!


Project Hutchinson: Upstairs built-in dressers

The built-in dressers are coming along. Here’s the first set in front of the bathroom. Louise picked the color.


Munibar: Mountain Unicycle Handlebar

A few days ago I finished a new unicycle handlebar for my mountain uni; thus, we have the munibar. I’m planning on using the geared 24″ mountain unicycle for the Africa tour next summer, and I want a handlebar that can be used to put some weight onto it and also have better grips than the standard plastic round handlebar in front of unicycle seats. So, I created my own out of some old bicycle parts. Let’s take a look at the final product before I describe how I made it — note that it isn’t 100% finished; I have... [read more]



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