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About

This blog is about what I’m about.  So the topics here are those that interest me personally.  I have a few passions: photography, guitars, and motorcycles mostly.  But I have many interests.  My education has encompassed a wide variety of fields, from music to mathematics to linguistics to evolutionary theory.   I’ve acquired skills as a machinist, welder, gunsmith, and luthier, the last of which is the most challenging by far.  I collect cameras, guitars, motorcycles, books, and fountain pens.  I also write as a profession.  So I look at this blog as a way to keep my writing skills in shape.  My intention is to write about these interests as a topic occurs to me. We’ll see how well this happens, I suppose.

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12 Responses to “About”

  • George Stuart-Vail says:

    Hey hi,
    I found you on an old 650rider forum thread ( http://650rider.com/index.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=3332 )after googling “xs650 solidworks”. I too am looking for files/freinds specific to XS650′s as I have one I’m planning on cutting into this summer.
    That thread is from 2008 and I expected that it would only produce deadends, so it’s encouraging to find an up-to-date blog.
    Well, I’m currenty engaged in a certificate course for AutoCad and Solidworks, and on the side… digi photography! The photography ed would be for better pictures for my wifes online clothing retail/auction business and my own artistic interest and ironincally for my class submission my first still life is of the Yamaha taken with my Canon A2100. (email me and I’ll send snaps if you’d like)
    The Industrial Design education is mainly for my own artistic/mechanical perversions (mostly motorcycle) and when school finishes in May I hope to be in the garage learning my Bridgeport mill and Clausing Colchester 15″ x 48″ engine lathe.

    All of this, really, just to avoid writing!
    Reading your website and blog looks like me. (this grammar intentionally left poor.)

    So do you have any motorcycle related CAD stuff, parts for sale, or plans for riding in New England this spring/summer?

    George Stuart-Vail
    g.stuartvail@gmail.com

    • cooltouch says:

      Hi George,

      Just read through the old thread, and I see I provided links to some drawings that are now gone from my website. My hosting service’s server had a catastrophic crash and lost all data, so those frame drawings went up in smoke. I might still have them archived somewhere, but it’ll require some searching. I envy you your lathe and mill setup. I’m having to make do with a couple of Chinese ones. Decent enough, but not in the same league as Bridgeport and Clausing.

      As you have probably noticed, my website is incomplete. I haven’t redone my motorcycle pages yet. And my motorcycling projects have been stalled out for a while. Mostly due to a lack of funds. I really do intend to get back to my ’78 cafe project one some day soon. Maybe as the weather warms up some. And then maybe I’ll get back to the blogs that got wiped out when my server crashed. I had one for my cafe project and one for my BMWs. Rather than have three different blogs, though, I’ll combine all the content here.

      Sorry, I don’t have an motorcycle-related CAD stuff. Maybe those files are buried somewhere in my archives, but that would be it. Probably easier just to google them up again. As for parts, well, yes, I do have a few parts for a very early XS-1. Rear fender, tail light, maybe a few other odds and ends. I’ll probably sell my ’78 fuel tank. A couple of mag wheels for a ’78-’80 Special. Once I’m finished with my project, I’ll have stuff left over, but I won’t know exactly what until I’ve finished.

      Good luck with your classes. Sounds interesting. At this time, I have no plans for a ride up to New England. But if you ever find yourself down Texas way, drop me a note.

  • Michael D Kaster says:

    I had no idea what a Luthier was. I looked it up fully excpecting to find it was all about worshipng Luther. :) Please forgive my assumptive ignorance.

    I am trying to contact you because I saw a post you made back in March on a forum called MFlenses. You asked about a Nikon F T4 lens mount.

    I have a Nikon F with a 55mm lens. I also have a Soligor 90mm-230mm lens that fits on to the camera in place of the 55mm lens. I assume the mount is the T4 you speak of.

    Email me if you are interested. I am in Hawaii and have no idea where you are so pick or delivery may be an issue.

    • admin says:

      Hey Casper,

      Sorry it took so long to reply. I haven’t checked in with this blog for a while. So, what, are you wanting to sell your outfit?

  • Wally Wronka says:

    Hello Michael;

    Just found your blog. Great website. I sold the Wronka Toy last year to Deus Ex Machina . They are a big dealer in Australia and build some great looking bikes. You might check out there website.

    At 68 years old I was having a hard time kicking it over. I sold off all my Yamaha 650 stash to a fellow 650 lister Ric Hopman from San Antonio.

    I’m into old NSU motorcycles ,have seven of them at present. Here is a link to one of the projects https://picasaweb.google.com/winchester.wally/NSUWithVelorex?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCO_uzNjM15qgLA&feat=directlink . Here is a link to one just like I had when i was 15 years old https://picasaweb.google.com/winchester.wally/SuperfoxUpdated?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCK2alvG1o4jgggE&feat=directlink .

    My 32 year old son is a guitar player since he was about 10 years old. He wants to build guitars. I was telling him about you and your some of the outstanding guitars you have built. I lost your phone number ,could you send it to me. would like to talk to you again. would also like my son to speak with you about building guitars.

    Hope all is well with you .

    Best Regards
    Wally Wronka
    College Station,Texas
    Cell 979-777-6736

    • admin says:

      Hey Wally,

      Sorry I’m just getting back with ya. Wow, the Wronka Toy went all the way to Oz! Well, I guess I’m not surprised — it sure is a pretty bike.

      Your projects look like they’re coming along nicely. I’m wondering if you have one in riding condition to make New Ulm this year. I’m planning on riding up there on Saturday. Maybe I’ll see you there? I think I’ll email ya, in case you don’t see this response.

      I’ll call instead.

  • thomas from hong kong says:

    found your tamron 300 f2.8 for sale, is that the one put on ebay before. i am interested. please let me know whether you can deliver to hong kong and also will you accept 450.
    thanks

  • admin says:

    Hello Thomas,

    Sorry I have no plans to sell my Tamron 300/2.8. I dunno where you found a reference that I had it for sale. I only bought it off eBay last year.

    Just for your information, your offer is way too low. A lens like mine, in its condition and with the accessories it came with, will typically sell on eBay in the $600-700 range. Clean ones in the case with all accessories as it came with new will typically command prices in the $800-1000 range. Especially if it is the later, dark-gray colored model.

  • Yessi says:

    Do you do repairs? My cannon xs needs a new card reader:( single mom who loves
    to photograph her kids!!!

  • Kevin says:

    Because my dog ate one of the most important item in transitioning from Kodachrome to digital, I too need to replace a slide scanner tray, and have had very little luck with that. You are just about the only lead I have found.

    I came across your plea “WTB: film holders for Konica Minolta DiMage Scan Dual scanner” on 03-21-2011 at . You wrote that “I have located an eBay seller in the UK who has an inventory of these film holders. Only problem is he wants £30 apiece for them.”

    Did you have any success, and can you share a contact for your supplier, or any other suppliers you may have found? Thanks.

    - Kevin

    • Michael says:

      Hello Kevin, my apologies for it taking so long to respond to your question. My blog software crashed and I was not able to get inside to the Admin space, so I was unable to read or respond to messages, among a great many other things.

      As for your questions, you know how I found the holders I needed? I scoured all Craigslists in the USA. There is a utility called “Searchtempest” — see it at searchtempest.com With that utility I can scan across as many or as few Craigslist sites that I want. So, since I used that utility and found what I needed I haven’t really paid attention to what could be found on eBay. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help. Tell you what, though, I might not have need of them. My Scan Dual IV is not working. I think it’s the AC adapter that’s at fault. But if I can’t get it working, I won’t have any use for those film holders anymore. And I don’t know of any place that repairs them anymore either, unfortunately. So you might want to keep in touch if you’re still looking.

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