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    Heatwave

    It would be nice were it true. Behaviours with negative consequences abound - gluttony, alcohol, gambling, smoking etc. Politicians reluctantly legislate fearing negative electoral impacts. Behaviours continue largely unchanged until confronted with the consequences - eg: heart attack, lung...
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    Heatwave

    Denial of anthropogenic climate change is probably mistaken - specious arguments to defend inaction. A warming planet is just one anthropogenic abuse. Over fishing, pollution, deforestation, consumption of limited minerals, to name but a few. A universal intent to moderate human behaviours...
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    Air source Heat Pumps any good?

    It is tempting to focus on one aspect of domestic energy use at the expense of the rest. One analysis for the UK shows space heating 61%, water heating 23%, lighting and appliance 13%, cooking 3%. For the latter two there is little alternative to electricity (+gas for cooking). Insulation is...
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    "Well, I woke up this mornin'..."

    One of the most liberating life experiences was paying off the mortgage. Congratulations.
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    Anyone do anything interesting with a rice cooker?

    Buy a camper van - not only do you save on hotel costs, but you can fit a full range of cooking equipment, and no one but you will be concerned about the smell.
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    Building control gone mad?

    I am not convinced that a black and white view of building regulation is effective. Those who willingly comply with regulation will often take a responsible approach to the work, accepting professional advice and researching issues where they are less than confident. Regulation makes little or...
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    Heatwave

    James Lovelock developed the Gaia hypothesis - that Earth and its biological systems behave as a huge single entity. This entity has closely controlled self-regulatory negative feedback loops that keep the conditions on the planet within boundaries that are favourable to life. He also...
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    Understairs cupboards....first project of this type ever

    Depending on the flooring (ideally tile or wood) you could put castors on the front edge of the large drawers which would take the weight of the contents and use only a single runner on each side to support the back of the drawer and locate it as it is pulled in and out. The castors would sit...
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    Bench Thicknesser

    What are the benefits of 3 knives rather than 2 - the answer eludes me. Using the DeWalt DW733 to illustrate - it has a feed rate of 10m a minute. No load speed is 10,000 RPM - in use the actual speed will be somewhat less depending on depth of cut and wood. Based on this there are 1,000 RPM...
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    Band Saw & Planer/Thicknesser for hobbyist

    Much depends on what you want to do. A bandsaw can resaw boards along the grain - the depth only limited by the capacity of the bandsaw but probably 125-200mm for a small/medium size. Cutting boards is more limited due to the size of the throat - I use a track saw if needed. A small table saw...
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    Tail centre - how tight?

    By doing the tail stock up tight you are transferring all of the out of balance vibration and stress into the centre - no great surprise it may fail after a short period. For out of balance blanks I normally bring the tailstock up to fairly lightly contact the blank - as much as a safety...
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    Heatwave

    I am not defending the fuel companies, nor denying impacts associated with climate change. We are profligate in our use of fossil fuels which are far too cheap. Even had the risks been fully understood and communicated it may have made limited difference. Fossil fuels for electricity...
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    Heatwave

    Corporations have a distinct legal identity and carry obligations similar to individuals. Dieselgate apparently cost VW the thick end of $40bn. May cost Mercedes $2bn and upwards. Big business can be, and is, and is, liable for its actions. There are two issues - big business can afford...
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    Heatwave

    With respect - completely bonkers IMHO. One may equally well apply the same penalties to all who in the last 30 years have (a) taken a flight, (b) owned a car, (c) fired up a gas CH boiler, (d) eaten airfreighted veg, (e) had a BBQ. Not a soul would be left unpunished. The objective is to...
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    Are SIP and Charnwood selling the same rebadged machines

    I was told recently that despite appearances they may not be identical with different quality bearings, motors etc. Obvious branding and minor external fittings (eg: handles) are easily changed. I suspect, although can't prove it, that is BS. More to the point - understand price, delivery...
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    I'm worried about what people will think after I die...

    As a child, on long journeys with my parents, I convinced myself we were actually driving in circles with an all powerful being changing the scenery. Complete nonsense of course - or it may be true. These days I prefer pragmatism and rational thought to speculation on the improbable and...
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    Tray ceiling - timber choices

    I don't think weight is an issue. Assuming a room size of (say) 4x5m (perimeter 18m) and 500mm frame centres = around 36 "frames" each secured by probably two screws. Even if the total weight of frame, MDF/ply/plasterboard, light fittings was as much as 200kg, this would averagely be a 3kg...
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    Spraying Tree Trunks with water

    With the recent hot weather would there be a real risk of splits developing as the outside dried too fast. A good soaking would be cheap and quick to apply.
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    Boiler change!!

    GSHP needs far more than the postage stamp garden of the typical modern housing estate, and presents separate problems for flat dwellers where block heating would likely be the main option. It is a solution aimed at those with larger properties and land. Wood pellets can deliver only a small...
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    Heatwave

    Evidence exists from mid 20th century of the damage done to the planet from uncontrolled use of fossil fuels. This is now the consensus view, alternative theories are largely marginalised. The US is "litigation central", and largely motivated by greed. Righting wrongs, attributing blame and...
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