So, I’m with Aussie Broadband (ABB) as my ISP for my Fibre to the Node connection. Now, ABB are a young company that have invested heavily with a lot of their own infrastructure, additionally they have their own IPv6 opt-in program for their customers allowing people like me access to an IPv6 range of addresses to use for their home devices.
So, when I first signed up with ABB I opted in. Expecting it would be simple to setup – As I previously had iPv6 configured for my previous ISP, Internode.
Previous, to my Fibre to the Node connection I was running on Fibre to the Premise. This, reveals the source of my difficultly in getting IPv6 to function on FTTN. You, see with FTTP, if your Internet Provider is IPv6 capable, you would connect your router directly to the NTD and your router would negotiate the IPv6 Address. However, with Fibre to the Node, to run a separate router to your modem you need to bridge your modem. This is where I found the source of my difficulty – in not being able to have an active IPv6 network on FTTN.
You see, with the Technicolor TG-789 Modem Router – A common router that’s been provided by ISPs world-wide you need to turn on bridging. However, before doing this you need to switch off IPv6 for it’s WAN. Additionally, you also need to switch off the Wifi network that the TG-789 produces otherwise – This will continue to broadcast after bridging – In hindsight, you would think that when putting a modem into bridge mode it would just switch everything off and pass you through the connection – But, apparently, not when it comes to the Technicolor TG-789.
Below is a screenshot of browsing IPv6 Google – One of the many ways you can test IPv6 and it’s function.
Occasionally I may spend too much time looking through the endless selection of marketplace items that the local community is selling. Quite often I just look through the listings and occasionally I come across a bargain too hard to pass up.
In this case I came across a VoIP PBX Telephone System – Now, in saying that you’re likely thinking what are you going to do with a PBX? Well, the thing is it was so much more than that, there was included for the price of $75 AUD was a Grandstream UCM6102 PBX, D-Link 8-Port PoE Switch (Managed), 3 x GrandStream Telephone handsets and a MikroTik RouterBoard! Lots of value to me and an almost endless amount of ways I could test and configure this type of equipment.
I also thought I could justify the $75 in knowing I could easily likely fetch $50 for the MitroTik Router itself if I wanted to re-coop costs. I also thought of testing this as a replacement PBX for my church’s phone system – For which I maintain. The solution was this Grandstream UCM, everything else to me was a bonus.
Below is a picture of what I purchased from a business that was selling the system.
I suppose, why the price of the system was so little was because unless you know what it is – you’re not going to buy it and be honest – How many people are looking through Facebook Marketplace for a VoIP Business PBX Phonesystem? Not many in a small town.
So how did I go with getting this all going? Well actually, I already have a VoIP phone number through my current internet provider, it was a number that I had from when I was in business – So, hadn’t released it as it was included in the price of my internet package. So, I had a number I could configure as two-line trunk. I also have an account with CheapVoip.com that I use to make cheap calls to almost any country in the world.
So, I reset the PBX, Switch and phones after picking them up. In getting into the configurations I found the UCM was on an old Firmware. So, I downloaded the latest available which gave it a really awesome face-lift – That has pretty much brought it in line with the newer GrandStream UCM6202 PBX.
The functionality of the PBX has so far proved useful and too date, I’ve been able to configure a desk phone, 2 phones for my shed and a fourth cordless Panasonic TGP600. I even managed to configure a fax-line over VoIP and have sent a few test faxes.
Well, that’s about it, I’m yet to play with the MikroTik but I’m sure I’ll get there one day.
The other week the security screen arrived for the shed window. So, while installing it I thought I might put the extra effort in and also install some tinting to help control the temperature.
The budget for this project was $50.
As I’m new to tinting I of course watched many YouTube video detailing the process. I determined after watching that yes of course, I’ll need a squeegee, a soapy water solution and a blade.
So, as you can see from the above video, it’s possible to do if you haven’t done it before and as it’s a shed, I knew I wouldn’t mind if there was a minor imperfection in my tinting application.
The tinting I got was 20VTL (Dark Smoke) that I purchased from Supercheap Auto on Special for about $40.
I purchased the spray bottle and squeegee from Woolworths.
So, the tinting is 3m x 50cm which was plenty for my window which was about 30cm wide for each panel by about 50cm tall. I of course failed with my first cut of tint before even applying it as I made the mistake of not spraying the tint enough – so, it stuck to itself like a huge piece of tape. Not a pretty site.
I didn’t mind failing on my first go, as I still had another 2m to go.
My go at applying the tint – it went down alright – but I removed the tint thinking I had sprayed too much solution – As the tint just kept sliding – Stupidly it would have actually been okay – I just needed to cut it and keep pushing the solution out.
Anyhow, by this point in time – I was down to my last 2 piece of tint. Which I successfully managed to apply with minimal errors in the application.
The end result is below – But, it was well worth-it compared with getting a professional out to do it at the cost of approximately $200.
So, I believe I’ve finally finished our Home Alarm System. I haven’t went for an off the shelf cheap solution. Rather, I’ve opted for a fully cabled and customizable setup using a Raspberry Pi and a PiFace Digital 2.
Hopefully at some point in the future, I will publish a YouTube video on the system so that others could implement it.
So, as part of the shed building process the first step was in getting a slab prepared and laid. The concreter, Darren that our shed company had organised us did a great job at preparing the site and was careful around all the irrigation pipes and pool pipies that came pretty close to the slab.
By the time it came to the pouring day temperatures were beautiful – a pleasant 25 degrees each day. Very pleasant but the winds were a bit high – Which meant unfortunately the slab started to dry a bit to quickly by the time the slab had been completed and had started the curing process.
I called the concreter in the afternoon after realising it had started to crack. He said he would be around soon to cover the slab with a tarp and water it down. He came around and wet it down and tarped it. Thankfully, this prevented further hairline cracks from forming.
After discussing the cracking with knowledgeable persons within building industry I learned it’s a pretty common occurrence – even in new slabs. Whether it could have had water put down on it earlier or not it could have prevented them from forming – But, to be honest, they were only small cracks.
On talking with the concreter after he came to remove his form-work, it’s thought the cracking was the result of win drying the top to fast. Which is the most likely case, it was a windy day.
So, that started the conversation with Darren on what can we do to help the slab look new. Darren recommended sealing the slab with an acrylic/oil-based sealant.
So, after agreeing he would repair the cracks on the slab, I would then pay him for some sealant, that I would later apply.
So, on the weekend, I finally got around to sealing the slab after the shed was all but nearly finished – Currently, just a few minor things need to be repaired before the building inspector will sign-off on it. So, as all the major works have been completed, I sealed the slab over the weekend.
The learning process
So, I read the instructions on the side of the sealer, a sealer by Concrete Colour Systems. It recommended a well cleaned slab – I used my Gerni for this. Though, if you have an existing slab you’ll want to complete further cleaning then just a pressure sprayer as you may have oil or grease marks that’ll require the appropriate chemicals/soaps to clean the surface.
If you have the option, give it an acid wash with Hyrdochloric acid, as this will help to remove and allow the sealer to bond with the pores of the concrete. Then water the slab down well to neutralise the PH of the cement.
The application process was rather straight forward, first coat water the sealant down with some solvent – For a 6 x 4 shed slab it was about 4 litres for the first coat with a mixture of solvent (10%). The second coat was just re-applying the sealant in it’s full strength. I used a further 5 litres for the second coat.
So, what’s the end product, well I added a sealant tint – Storm Grey – Basically a dark gray colour – must like the colour of freshly poured conrete. What’s it feat like under the feet – Quite nice, it feels like a lino surface and smoothed out the broom finish – So much so, you hardly notice the broom finish – I’m yet to test the floors after it’s been wet – But, from the small amounts of water I’ve had on the slab since sealing it – It’s pretty grippy on a broomed – finished slab.
Prepare all your painting products and buy a quality roller with an extension arm.
Wear some old socks instead of shoes.
Apply the second coat at a right angle to the first.
Complete the sealing on a pleasant day – 60% – 70 humidity and a temperature of about 26-28 degrees. High humidity can be problematic with causing bubbling within the sealant as it’s drying.
The finished product with the added 2 Litre Storm Grey Tint.
So, I finally got around to replacing the inside of this door’s key barrel. I went to my local locksmith in Townsville that I use for all my lock needs. I’ve always found them to offer great service and it’s also good knowing I can support local.
The locksmith I use is Jim Roberts who charge reasonable prices for re-keying a lock to suit my key.
Pretty soon, I’ll use them to change the barrels on my shed currently being built.
So, earlier in the year I was riding my Cross Country Trek Mountain Bike and noticed the forks gave way. This mean that I could no longer lock my suspension out or actually use suspension the way it’s meant to be – like reducing road and track vibration and generally absorbing shocks.
So, I took to searching online to find a supplier for the forks.
After inspecting the forks I found one of the names on it was, “SR” and “Suntour.” Knowing that, in terms of MTB forks, there’s really not that many brands that I know of besides Fox. So, I figured it must be a brand name.
After researching, I found Suntour appears to be a Japanese bicycle component manufacturer. Great, now I just needed to find the fork I needed.
SR Suntour Website
So, the SR Suntour website has a great product selector filter – So, I simply found I needed to select my wheel size and my bicycle’s intended use – And it returned my exact forks – Just minus the Trek OEM branding.
So, go figure, Trek and as I found out later, pretty much every sub-$600-$800 bicycle in Australia appears to also use the same brand of forks.
Great, so, I found the fork I need, now I just need to work out how I replace my forks. After watching a handful of videos on YouTube I figured I would be capable of replacing the forks if I get the right tools and support aids – Such as a stem cutting tube guide, new start insert, hacksaw and the appropriate tool for inserting the start nut and crown. Have I missed anything?
If you want a good video to watch, I found this one pretty helpful.
Ordering the Parts
So, I found Cycling Deal seemed to supply a fair few Suntour products and they had good access to the parts I needed – So, I’ll paste in my shopping list below. Thankfully, all this happened before COVID19 so when I was ordering the world wasn’t in shutdown mode.
Did I mention I had a budget also? Yes, bascially it was fix the bike so I can get a few more years life out of it – Hopefully another 4-5 years – As it’s already about 7 years old. I’m pretty good at maintaining my collection of bicycles.
Tools I needed to complete the work was was a caliper, a small toolkit with sockets and allan keys – The type that you can normally pick up from SuperCheap Auto or Repco for about $80. I just use my car’s service tookit.
Mechpro Socket & Tool Set 74pc – MP201K-1
So, how did the install go, it went great – I got the swap over of the forks done in about 1 hour and finished within an hour and a half.
Some images of the service are below:
Would I recommend to the backyard bicycle mechanic or budding mechanical engineer to complete a fork change – Of course, just take it slow and do your research and you’ll get through it.
Over the weekend I ripped out the side yard fence to my property and installed two double-gates in preparation for the shed I’ve got coming later this year. Yes, I’ll have a shed by about July hopefully, though, who knows what to expect with many businesses’ closing their doors due to the Coronavirus.
Why did I need to put in some double gates for my shed, well simply because I had no side-yard access for a backhoe to come in and prepare the site for the shed.
So, after having looked around for some quotes from fencing companies I found it was incredibly hard trying to find anyone that would quote on such a small job. Well, I had some businesses say, I would have to basically get my whole fence replaced and not just have a small portion completed.
So anyway, I ended up deciding I would do it myself. I figured I had the tools, a circular saw, horses and I’m confident I can put in a post as needed and hang a gate.
I found that of course Bunnings was the cheapest supplier for what I needed.
Bunnings also makes it pretty easy in the sense they sell a system that allows you to build a gate to size. The system is by a company called Fortress Gates and they have sizing calculator built into their website. After inputting your measurements and buying the frame kit and your chosen fencing material it’s just a matter of getting the work done.
I found it took me an my sister’s husband the best part of a day to get it done. To put that into perspective about 5 hours with a break and a trip to Bunnings in between. Which isn’t bad considing we don’t do this everyday and I’m in IT and he’s a solicitor.
Take a look below to see how it all came together.