author
33CommentsNorthern Coastal CaliforniaJoined July 25th, 2016
Retired. Interested in photography, classical music, English Mastiffs and British Blue Shorthair cats.
  • Taz-Hood commented on Kuzmanic's instructable Charcoal Retort6 days ago
    Charcoal Retort

    Wonderful proof-of-concept; WELL DONE! I'm admittedly ignorant, so I wonder what increasing the diameter of the return tube would do. Also, would there be any advantage to making the return tube removable/replaceable to be able to clean out tar and experiment with its diameter? Two things I don't understand: 1.) Do you have to feed wood through the air intake? Could there be a separate "door" through which you could introduce larger pieces of wood? 2.) Given the high temperatures you achieved, can you speculate as to why the larger pieces weren't completely carbonized? Would it just be a matter of letting the stove run longer? ANYWAY, please forgive me if my questions are stupid or obvious. You've done a fantastic job with this Instructable, and I thank you very much for shari...

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    Wonderful proof-of-concept; WELL DONE! I'm admittedly ignorant, so I wonder what increasing the diameter of the return tube would do. Also, would there be any advantage to making the return tube removable/replaceable to be able to clean out tar and experiment with its diameter? Two things I don't understand: 1.) Do you have to feed wood through the air intake? Could there be a separate "door" through which you could introduce larger pieces of wood? 2.) Given the high temperatures you achieved, can you speculate as to why the larger pieces weren't completely carbonized? Would it just be a matter of letting the stove run longer? ANYWAY, please forgive me if my questions are stupid or obvious. You've done a fantastic job with this Instructable, and I thank you very much for sharing it. I'm in awe of your knowledge and abilities. With kind regards, Mark H.

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  • Taz-Hood commented on RCEM's instructable Bacon Infused Fire Lighters22 days ago
    Bacon Infused Fire Lighters

    This is at once hilarious, informative, practical and well done! You get my vote in the "Fat" contest. I never cook bacon because I don't like dealing with the grease. Do you think one could do a similar project using a block of commercial lard or paraffin? Production-wise, this Instructable is professional quality. Thank you for sharing it!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on Alex in NZ's instructable Hide Your Flash Drive in Plain Sight3 months ago
    Hide Your Flash Drive in Plain Sight

    At first I was puzzled as to why I would ever *need* to hide a USB drive, but I'm security-conscious and live with concerns about being burglarized. I have tons of valuable stereo and camera equipment, among other things. The first step I need to take is to prepare a photographed inventory, and I should keep a copy of that inventory on a couple of USB drives, with one in our safety deposit box and another hidden as you've suggested amidst a bunch of cables. An inventory is essential if my insurance company is to honor any claims, and recording serial numbers is important if there is any hope of assisting the police in retrieving stolen property. Thank you for this excellent Instructable, and I hope you'll give thought to additional creative loss-prevention and disguise ideas. I'm intere...

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    At first I was puzzled as to why I would ever *need* to hide a USB drive, but I'm security-conscious and live with concerns about being burglarized. I have tons of valuable stereo and camera equipment, among other things. The first step I need to take is to prepare a photographed inventory, and I should keep a copy of that inventory on a couple of USB drives, with one in our safety deposit box and another hidden as you've suggested amidst a bunch of cables. An inventory is essential if my insurance company is to honor any claims, and recording serial numbers is important if there is any hope of assisting the police in retrieving stolen property. Thank you for this excellent Instructable, and I hope you'll give thought to additional creative loss-prevention and disguise ideas. I'm interested in ways to hide cash and prescription medications as well and, when I invest in a video surveillance system, how to hide or disguise the system's DVR while keeping it accessible. Any and all ideas you have on home and data security are greatly appreciated!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on spookydonuts's instructable Rainbowscale Portrait Embroidery10 months ago
    Rainbowscale Portrait Embroidery

    Spooky, This is a WONDERFUL Instructable, with clear steps for beginners and a professional-quality finished product. Do you do have a business (e.g., on Etsy) where you sell your work? It would be so great if people could submit portraits (following your guidelines for what works well and what doesn't, of course) for you to complete for them! You would have to be selective in what you accept (maybe asking potential clients for several different shots of the subject in various poses using window light for illumination), but I believe people would gladly pay good money for this uniquely personal keepsake. Thank you so much for sharing your process with all of us!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on mr_fid's instructable How to CUT GLASS.1 year ago
    How to CUT GLASS.

    Hi Michelle, I would check with your local professional glass company to see if they can cut your recycled shower panels to the sizes you need for starting frames for a reasonable price. The process may be prohibitively expensive or they may give you the same answer as Mike, but it doesn't cost anything to ask. While you're there, ask them what they would recommend and why. New glass might be cheaper than the cost of cutting tempered glass (if it's even possible). Good for you for attempting to re-use. Could you size up your frames to use complete panels? Best of luck! -Taz

    Thank you for this lovely and useful Instructable. I signed up for a short community-based stained glass class when I quit smoking on June 23, 1971, to take my mind off of wanting cigarettes and to keep my hands busy, so I haven't "broken glass" in almost 47 years. The piece I created (a goose with the sun's rays rising behind it) was so awful that I put it out with the trash. Almost ten years later I was driving around (15 miles from where I lived when I discarded it and in a completely different town) and saw it in someone's front window! I was equally flattered and horrified. The moral to this story is that even one's first attempt at making a stained glass piece may be appreciated by someone, so now that we have the internet and sites like Craigslist and Etsy, give someone...

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    Thank you for this lovely and useful Instructable. I signed up for a short community-based stained glass class when I quit smoking on June 23, 1971, to take my mind off of wanting cigarettes and to keep my hands busy, so I haven't "broken glass" in almost 47 years. The piece I created (a goose with the sun's rays rising behind it) was so awful that I put it out with the trash. Almost ten years later I was driving around (15 miles from where I lived when I discarded it and in a completely different town) and saw it in someone's front window! I was equally flattered and horrified. The moral to this story is that even one's first attempt at making a stained glass piece may be appreciated by someone, so now that we have the internet and sites like Craigslist and Etsy, give someone a chance to own your early efforts, even if you wouldn't display them in your own home. :-)I am struck by the fact that all of your pieces are perfectly sized in copper. Wow! Is lead sizing no longer used? If not, how do you combine your pieces into a lamp? Your Instructable has inspired me to check with local art groups to see if there is a class being offered where I could try again. I promise, no more geese. Again, thank you so much!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on Paige Russell's instructable 10 Unusual Uses for Baking Soda1 year ago
    10 Unusual Uses for Baking Soda

    Thank you so much for adding this important information!

    Rob, I never heard of that, but of course it makes perfect sense. Thank you for the tip! I'm checking my battery today. Question: Would car wax work as well as Vaseline (I just don't have a jar on hand at the moment)?

    Right! Thank you for this suggestion!

    Where does one buy gypsum? Is it a poison? And what does the flour do? We had a mice invasion a few years ago and just kept trapping and releasing them. More than 40 in one season! They got into drawers and peed and pooped on my wife's fine fabric collection -- what a mess. Also, if you know, what is gypsum? Thank you!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on dpeach's instructable LED Trunk Light Upgrade1 year ago
    LED Trunk Light Upgrade

    MrPapaya & GKornbluth & DPeach: Thank you all so much for the eBay search suggestions. If you scroll down on that 310584712863 listing, there is a HUGE amount of information about LED lights that would be useful for starting any LED project. And, DPeach, many thanks for offering this nicely documented and well written Instructable. It gives me the confidence and assurance I need to believe I could actually take on a LED project on my own without making a mess of it. This is one of my favorite Instructables ever. You really are a "peach," kind sir.

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  • Taz-Hood commented on dpeach's instructable LED Trunk Light Upgrade1 year ago
    LED Trunk Light Upgrade

    MrPapaya: Could you provide links for the pre-wired (with heat shrink reinforcement) 12 inch LED strips and adaptors for the plug-in bulb receptacles? Thank you very much!

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  • Super Horn (Person-Powered Truck Horn)

    This is too much work for an old man like me, but I think your design and Instructable are completely brilliant! Wow! If you (or any of your readers) are still in school, this could serve as the basis of an award-winning science project for sure. I'm completely blown away. When I was in school, I played trumpet in the pep band and was always looking for new ways to make impressive sounds. One I named the "Trippet." At the climax of a song, I'd put my trumpet mouthpiece on a thrift-store trombone, stand up and finish on an impossibly high note. Way across the arena, the competing band had no idea how a trombonist could play so high (and in tune, of course)! Your truck-horn idea puts a lung-powered high-decibel noise maker into the hands of the intelligent and skilled builder. I...

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    This is too much work for an old man like me, but I think your design and Instructable are completely brilliant! Wow! If you (or any of your readers) are still in school, this could serve as the basis of an award-winning science project for sure. I'm completely blown away. When I was in school, I played trumpet in the pep band and was always looking for new ways to make impressive sounds. One I named the "Trippet." At the climax of a song, I'd put my trumpet mouthpiece on a thrift-store trombone, stand up and finish on an impossibly high note. Way across the arena, the competing band had no idea how a trombonist could play so high (and in tune, of course)! Your truck-horn idea puts a lung-powered high-decibel noise maker into the hands of the intelligent and skilled builder. It is SO MUCH BETTER than those tacky compressed-gas-can air horns people sometimes bring to a game. Go lung power!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on prototype_mechanic's instructable Nixie Watch Prototype_C2 years ago
    Nixie Watch Prototype_C

    I'm so sad for you that your SSD failed. This is one of the coolest watches in the whole world and totally unique. I also really like the Steampunk versions you built using five (?) Nixies and three leather straps. They are very bold and beautiful as well. Great work! Your solid aluminum Nixie watch should someday be on display in a major museum. Is it for sale? I'm sure I could not afford one, but I think a well-off watch collector would LOVE to have it. Thank you for sharing this Instructable. You are a design genius!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on SpecificLove's instructable Survival Whistle from a Soup Can2 years ago
    Survival Whistle from a Soup Can

    Brilliant! When you're lost in the woods, it is common enough to come across other campers' discarded cans (shame on them), and this would really help! When I was 18, I went into the Sierras by myself and opened cans with my pocket knife (today I would use a lightweight military-type opener instead). This was before freeze-dried food was readily available. Aside: I wonder if holes made with the point of a knife would work by turning the knife like a drill? Do the holes need to be round to work? Back on topic: Usually, finding an old nail is likewise not that difficult, as people tend to pound them in to trees (again, shame on them), but getting one out of a tree might be tough. I too cannot whistle using my fingers, so this could be a life-saver. Of course today I wouldn't think of hiki...

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    Brilliant! When you're lost in the woods, it is common enough to come across other campers' discarded cans (shame on them), and this would really help! When I was 18, I went into the Sierras by myself and opened cans with my pocket knife (today I would use a lightweight military-type opener instead). This was before freeze-dried food was readily available. Aside: I wonder if holes made with the point of a knife would work by turning the knife like a drill? Do the holes need to be round to work? Back on topic: Usually, finding an old nail is likewise not that difficult, as people tend to pound them in to trees (again, shame on them), but getting one out of a tree might be tough. I too cannot whistle using my fingers, so this could be a life-saver. Of course today I wouldn't think of hiking cross-country in the woods without carrying at least minimal survival items in my vest, especially a couple of trash-compactor or large garbage bags which can make an excellent vapor-barrier shirt for warmth and/or a good raincoat if caught in a storm. Remember that the majority of people who die each year from "exposure" (hypothermia) do so by getting wet in 50 degree fahrenheit weather, not in snow or ice storms. Knowing how to stay dry and warm is essential. Knowing how to create an emergency whistle like this can greatly increase your chances of being found by rescue personnel or other hikers. Thank you for creating this wonderful Instructable. Everyone who enjoys hiking should learn how to do this in case they forget or lose or break their emergency whistle.

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  • Taz-Hood commented on dave5201's instructable How To Hide a Wall Wart Transformer2 years ago
    How To Hide a Wall Wart Transformer

    DennisT33 - Thank you very much for your kind and helpful reply. Now that I know more (thanks to you and Jim the Soundman), I'm less freaked out and feel that I can fix both holes in the wall with a hand saw and proper boxes and add outlets (in one case) and a blank cover to the other. I appreciate your time and patience with my inexperience. I can do this!As for hiding wall warts, I've always just used a power strip that can be placed on the floor, behind some equipment, or under a desk. For more sensitive installations, I use an uninterruptible power supply instead of a power strip.

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  • Taz-Hood commented on dave5201's instructable How To Hide a Wall Wart Transformer2 years ago
    How To Hide a Wall Wart Transformer

    DennisT33 - Thank you for your reply. I wasn't very clear in my terminology (or understanding). Two of the indoor light fixtures that the former owner installed just had Romex coming out of holes he cut in the sheetrock without boxes, which he then spliced into the leads of the light fixtures he installed. When I removed the unneeded lights, one a motion-activated double spotlight at the top of the bedroom stairs (he thought it would make a good "security light") and the other an under-shelf fluorescent light for a desk that is no longer there, I am left with two crude holes in the wall with stripped Romex sticking out. I taped the bare wire ends so they wouldn't short, but is there more that I can do? Should I cut off the bare wires altogether and do something with the ends o...

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    DennisT33 - Thank you for your reply. I wasn't very clear in my terminology (or understanding). Two of the indoor light fixtures that the former owner installed just had Romex coming out of holes he cut in the sheetrock without boxes, which he then spliced into the leads of the light fixtures he installed. When I removed the unneeded lights, one a motion-activated double spotlight at the top of the bedroom stairs (he thought it would make a good "security light") and the other an under-shelf fluorescent light for a desk that is no longer there, I am left with two crude holes in the wall with stripped Romex sticking out. I taped the bare wire ends so they wouldn't short, but is there more that I can do? Should I cut off the bare wires altogether and do something with the ends of the Romex (do they make plastic "caps" for Romex)? Should I shove the Romex back into the wall and figure out how to patch the two holes in the sheetrock, both of which are too large just to spackle and paint over? Both "circuits" (who knows where or how he spliced in) are currently switched. Should I remove the switches and try to pull the Romex out of the wall from where the switches are, or is that too dangerous and complicated? Thank you for your help!

    Thanks for the advice, Jim. Will do.

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  • Taz-Hood commented on dave5201's instructable How To Hide a Wall Wart Transformer2 years ago
    How To Hide a Wall Wart Transformer

    We bought our house almost 22 years ago, and the previous owner was an avid DIYer, installing switches and outlets and phone lines all over the place (sometimes just wires going to lighting fixtures directly without outlets in two cases). Oi vey! So what to do? I would love to have the whole house re-wired properly with several dedicated circuits for the components of our stereo and home theater systems, but I shudder to think what it would cost. In the meantime, is it a big deal to replace the regular outlets he added with GFCI outlets? Also, our living room is such that there is no accessible attic space, so could an electrician run seven or eight new, dedicated circuits along the *outside* of our house to reach the wall where most of our TV and stereo equipment is located?

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  • How To Make A Bright LED Panel For 20$

    Light coverage falls off by the square of the distance. (Someone PLEASE correct me if I'm wrong or not saying this correctly!) Thus, a single panel won't light a rink; you'd potentially need dozens of them. You can see a light from 10 miles away, for instance, but you cannot read by it. And because of this phenomenon, for an alternative to dimming, you can adjust the amount of light by moving the panel closer to or farther from your subject (e.g., when lighting a static portrait or a video interview). LED light panels for photography are so darn expensive; I'd love to be able to build my own.

    Thank you for this tutorial! I truly appreciate it.

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  • Taz-Hood followed Yonatan242 years ago
      • DIY Magnetic Hand-Saw Guide - Extremely Accurate Cuts!
      • Articulating 70W Spectrum-Balanced LED Panel
      • How to Make a Wooden 6" Bench-Vise
  • Taz-Hood commented on inspiretomake's instructable Meteorite Ring2 years ago
    Meteorite Ring

    Brilliant! Sometime down the line you may want to consider re-shaping it into a "comfort" band contour, which is less likely to catch on things and easier on the finger in the long run. And as for questions about rust, once it is etched and cleaned, you always have the option of coating it in a clear-coat (is there such a thing as clear epoxy?), both to prevent oxidation and to help prevent chipping and breaking, although chipping seems extremely unlikely with all the cutting you have already accomplished to make it into a ring. Keep in mind that as you get older you will not be able to remove the ring from your finger, so a "comfort" profile is nice to have. (I haven't been able to remove my wedding band for the past 10 years.) I don't know what monetary value you w...

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    Brilliant! Sometime down the line you may want to consider re-shaping it into a "comfort" band contour, which is less likely to catch on things and easier on the finger in the long run. And as for questions about rust, once it is etched and cleaned, you always have the option of coating it in a clear-coat (is there such a thing as clear epoxy?), both to prevent oxidation and to help prevent chipping and breaking, although chipping seems extremely unlikely with all the cutting you have already accomplished to make it into a ring. Keep in mind that as you get older you will not be able to remove the ring from your finger, so a "comfort" profile is nice to have. (I haven't been able to remove my wedding band for the past 10 years.) I don't know what monetary value you would put on such a ring, but I'd estimate about $5,000. Thank you so much for taking us through the process, and congratulations on your engagement! You'll be wearing a ring that is literally billions of years old. Very few men can say that (women get to wear diamonds, after all).

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  • Taz-Hood commented on dannyk6's instructable Smart LED Window2 years ago
    Smart LED Window

    *Translucent* plastic!

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  • How To Tattoo a Knife Blade w/ (Proper) Metal Etching

    Thank you, Alex, for a very cool experiment and Instructable. Would one of you smart people be kind enough to explain why this works (especially with something as hard as stainless steel)? Is it like reverse electro-plating, with the knife's molecules being transferred to the sacrificial fork? Would this ruin the temper of the blade? (That last question is pretty stupid, I realize, but I just don't understand the chemistry or physics of this, and I would not want to ruin a $300+ Busse knife.) It is amazing that you are getting such a deep etch with just table salt for an electrolyte (?) and a "transistor radio" battery for a power source. (You have to be pretty old to remember that 9V batteries were developed to power small, plastic, pocketable transistor radios, which were al...

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    Thank you, Alex, for a very cool experiment and Instructable. Would one of you smart people be kind enough to explain why this works (especially with something as hard as stainless steel)? Is it like reverse electro-plating, with the knife's molecules being transferred to the sacrificial fork? Would this ruin the temper of the blade? (That last question is pretty stupid, I realize, but I just don't understand the chemistry or physics of this, and I would not want to ruin a $300+ Busse knife.) It is amazing that you are getting such a deep etch with just table salt for an electrolyte (?) and a "transistor radio" battery for a power source. (You have to be pretty old to remember that 9V batteries were developed to power small, plastic, pocketable transistor radios, which were all the thing in the '50s and '60s. LOL) Also, would this work on any metal, and why does the negative (fork) have to be the same type of metal? My favorite element is tungsten, and it would be fun to etch some of my less-than-show-quality pieces with the word "Tungsten" and/or "Wolfram" and its symbol in the Periodic Table, "W." I've got some pure tungsten anodes from movie theater projection bulbs (thank you, eBay) that I could use for the sacrificial side of the process. Thank you in advance for any help you can offer in better understanding the process and whether this would work on a big ol' chunk of tungsten! I truly appreciate it.

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  • Taz-Hood commented on keokg2's instructable Wifi Extender2 years ago
    Wifi Extender

    Thank you so much for your kind reply. You're extending your WiFi reception (not broadcast). Now the re-purposing of the satellite dish makes perfect sense. With increasing numbers of public WiFi hot spots, from coffee shops and colleges to municipal parks and libraries, a person could use your Instructable to get online in areas with a weak but still viable public signal. In our area, that could potentially save students and other people with limited resources as much as $50 a month for broadband internet access, all without breaking the law. Brilliant!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on keokg2's instructable Wifi Extender2 years ago
    Wifi Extender

    Please forgive my ignorance, but is your design directional (i.e., does it work best in the direction the dish is pointing)? If so, what is this device's primary purpose? Twenty years ago we were all eager to share our WiFi with our neighbors and were happy to let strangers use our bandwidth; today we're afraid some pervert is going to park in front of our houses and download nasty stuff using our IP address. How things have changed! Anyway, I just don't get what a sat-dish-based WiFi extender will do for you. I'm sure the answer to this must be obvious to most readers, but I'm curious and (in this case) completely clueless. Don't be too hard on me! And a sincere "THANK YOU" for all the time and effort you put into developing this Instructable. I'm all for re-using and re-purp...

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    Please forgive my ignorance, but is your design directional (i.e., does it work best in the direction the dish is pointing)? If so, what is this device's primary purpose? Twenty years ago we were all eager to share our WiFi with our neighbors and were happy to let strangers use our bandwidth; today we're afraid some pervert is going to park in front of our houses and download nasty stuff using our IP address. How things have changed! Anyway, I just don't get what a sat-dish-based WiFi extender will do for you. I'm sure the answer to this must be obvious to most readers, but I'm curious and (in this case) completely clueless. Don't be too hard on me! And a sincere "THANK YOU" for all the time and effort you put into developing this Instructable. I'm all for re-using and re-purposing whenever we can, and surplus satellite dishes are a blight. Keep up the good work!

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  • Microsoft Surface Hub on the Cheap: Touchscreen Coffee Table

    Excellent idea! So many museums and "Discovery Centers" need something like this, especially for use by children. Is there a reason you cannot use the tempered glass that comes with the coffee table instead of 1/4" Plexiglass? Does a "10-point" IR touch frame provide sufficient resolution to use Windows 10 and other programs with smallish icons? What about "swiping" the screen or using two fingers to enlarge a document or image? What do you recommend for venting the installed TV to avoid heat build-up? Could your design be wall-mounted instead? Thank you so much for this excellent Instructable and for answering my questions!

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  • Taz-Hood commented on deba168's instructable DIY All in One Solar Power Pack2 years ago
    DIY All in One Solar Power Pack

    I love your video, even with the sound off (my wife is still asleep beside me in bed). Some Instructables don't show the adjustments you have to make as you go: the cutting, soldering, shrink-tubing, using a file to get things to fit, use of the hot glue, and so forth. Speeding up the parts that didn't need real-time documentation but still needed to be shown was a brilliant feature! Not only did I watch the whole video, but it seemed like only about 3 minutes passed. You, kind sir, are a very talented teacher and video artist/editor. My only other thought was that this briefcase power station is probably not something you'd want to try to take through airport security. Hahahaha! You'd miss your flight for sure! Thank you for a great Instructable.

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  • Taz-Hood commented on jleslie48's instructable Portable rocket stove about $25 2 years ago
    Portable rocket stove about $25

    Thank you very much for this enjoyable and clever Instructable! I have to ask a trio of stupid questions, so please forgive me. What is a "rocket stove"? Would it be improved with the addition of a small, battery powered fan? Could this be scaled down for a stove to take backpacking? Thank you!

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  • Taz-Hood followed Photography, Molds & Casting, LEDs and Lighting channel 2 years ago