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Steering and throttle cable routing

Control cable routing is often a bit of an afterthought. In a small, simple boat, it's often OK for the designer to more or less ignore the engine controls, and trust that the builder will know how to install them. That approach doesn't work so well for a larger vessel, like the Starwind 860 trimaran, in which the exact routing of each control cable must be planned out to avoid conflicts.

Strut blocks for the Starwind 860

Our current situation, with regards to the construction of the Starwind 860 power trimaran, requires that we stick to small bits: there simply isn't enough space at the moment to build the entire boat. In order to minimize the time for which we'll need a full size build shed, we're starting with the smaller and more fiddly pieces of the boat. These can fit in our current work space, and by having them pre-assembled, we'll save a lot of time during final assembly.

Essential administrator tools for Microsoft Windows

Wuen I find myself in times of trouble / Mark Russinovich comes to me / Speaking words of wisdom / Run PE, Run PE.

Don't ask me to remember where that little Beatles rewrite originally came from, but it's sound advice- referring, of course, to Sysinternals Process Explorer. PE is one of many tools I keep around for troubleshooting and maintenance on Windows-based computers. Here are a few of my favourites.

How to set up a new Windows laptop: Nuke it from orbit

Microsoft Windows is actually pretty solid these days, notwithstanding the occasional hopelessly bone-headed interface design decision (Win8 Metro, anyone?). The NT 6 kernel family that underpins Vista, Win7 and Win8 is, now that Vista's teething pains are overcome, pretty slick and reliable.

The same can't be said for the heaps of shovelware that just about every single OEM ships on their new Windows machines.

Sources of weather data for Lake Ontario

I have a really hard time trusting meteorologists.

No offence is intended to any weather forecasters who are reading this. The trouble is, Kingston is a geographically and meteorologically complex region, making it hard to build accurate forecast models with sufficiently fine detail- and the forecasters who do cover our area are also responsible for many, many other cities. So, while a forecast of "sunny, not much happening" is pretty reliable, estimates of wind, rain and sea state are often way off.

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