Thursday, May 14, 2015

What Kind of Woodpecker is This?

I have a request from any "bird people". What is this?  It is a little smaller than a Hairy Woodpecker, and I've never seen one with red under the bill.  None of my bird books or my iBirds app show any woodpecker with red under the bill so I'm confused. The face striping is similar to a Pileated Woodpecker, but it is much smaller, and the tuff on the top of the head is not there.  Could it be a young Pileated?

It loves to sound on this metal mailbox bottom - you can hear it from 1/4 mile away.

Here is another view:

Any suggestions would be appreciated!

Until next time...

Monday, May 11, 2015

A Change of Plans

More Solar
I'm adding a photo of the new 100 watt solar panel.  The one in the rear is the original 95 watt GoPower panel installed as an option when I purchased the trailer.  The front panel is a 100 watt Poly panel purchased from Windy Nation.  I chose it to match the output voltage with the existing GoPower panel.  GoPower does offer a 95 watt add on panel that is an exact match, but their prices are out of this world.  The Expansion Kit, which includes a panel and wiring sells for around $500.00 plus shipping.  The 100 watt panel from Windy Nation with the cabling, connectors & branch connectors sold for $141.96 delivered to Oswego.

A change of plans for tomorrow.  I was suppose to take the trailer to Seven O's to have the refrigerator checked & replace the 120V switch in the water heater.  While I mentioned in the previous post that the refrigerator was now working on 120V, I discovered that once it reached the temperature set by the thermostat, it shuts off like it should, but as it warms up, it never starts cooling again until you wiggle the thermostat dial.  The problem - Seven O's service building had a fire last night, lost the roof & their tools, so I don't think it would be a good idea to haul the trailer to Cicero.

On the other hand, I made one last attempt with a pair of very thin needle nose players to retrieve the wired for the water heater switch, and managed to pull them out far enough so I could crimp on new connectors & attach the new switch.  So, I'll have hot water and, unless I run it on gas, a warm refrigerator!

Until next time -

Saturday, May 9, 2015

The 2015 Onondaga Audubon Bird Festival, Derby Hill, Mexico, NY

The 2015 Onondaga Audubon Bird Festival, Derby Hill, Mexico, NY

Not a lot going on.  I did get the solar panel mounted on the roof & cabled to the controller, so I now have 195 watts feeding the batteries.  Another good thing - the refrigerator is working on 120V AC.  Not sure why, but after switching it back & forth between gas & electric, it started working.  I have an appointment with Seven 0's to have the switch replaced in the water heater.  I tried, but I can't see how it can be replaced without pulling the heater.

This Saturday the Birds of Prey exhibit was part of the 2015 Onondaga Audubon Bird Festival.  Lots of exhibits, bird walks & talks, and, of course, a bunch of captive birds of prey.  Mostly owls.  More photos of the festival at LakeshoreImages.

Other than that, I'm slowly getting things together to leave on a trip to Alaska in June.  My friends Don & Anne are trying out their Scamp this weekend, hauling it to Albany to visit with the grandkids.  

Until next time...

Thursday, April 23, 2015


Thursday, April 23, 2015, Oswego, NY, 270.1 miles, 1816 for the trip.

I didn't get started as early as I wanted to, but I eventually hit the road. A little ways north of the campground it started to snow. It continued to snow off & on all the way to Oswego. There was never more than a dusting on the road, but since the temperature was in the low 30's, I was a bit worried that I'd be pulling the trailer through snow. Now that I'm home, the snow has stopped, but it is still cold; my outside thermometer reads 37°F. I want the 70°F temperatures from Tennessee!

Other than the snow, it was a fairly quiet trip home. My gas mileage went down to 16.2 MPG for the trip. I unpacked the trailer, and as much as I didn't want to, winterized the trailer. The prediction if for freezing temperatures until Saturday, so I blew out the water lines and added some RV antifreeze to the drains.

Now I'm waiting for the solar panel to arrive from Windy City. It is expected on Monday. I did pick up a switch for the water heater, and managed to get the old one out - it snaps in place. The problem is the connections were burned off, so I'm not sure I'll be able to connect the new switch. Oh well, one needs projects to keep one busy!

Until next time-

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Jonestown KOA, Jonestown, PA

Interesting Homebuilt Trailer
Wednesday, April 22, 2015, Jonestown KOA, Jonestown, PA - 226 miles, 1545.9 for the trip.

I started out on I 81, but when I reached Pennsylvania, both the rough road & the spray from trucks (yes, it is raining) convinced me to switch to US 11. For much of the east, both roads parallel each other, although since US 11 goes through most towns & cities, it is a slower drive. I usually don't mind the extra time, and find the cities & towns break the monotony of driving. I did find that driving I 81 at 57 miles per hour does improve my mileage. I usually average 15MPG, on this trip with most of the driving on I 81, I am currently at 17.3 MPG. Even with the hills along the way, that is as good as I got on the secondary roads in the Florida flatlands.

I probably should have tried for a bit further today, however with the rain I decided to stop at the Jonestown KOA. I used some of my KOA "points", so it was only $15.00 for the night, and I'm in the same site I had on the way down. There is a single axle home built trailer a few sites away, so I took a photo. Interesting pop up top section. The only other photo today is the site photo, but if you want to see it, it is at today's LakeshoreImages page.

While the rain has stopped & it is warming up (it was 49°F when I arrived; now up to 54°F) I didn't want to cook outdoors so I walked next door to the campground for a Blimpy's sub for dinner.

Until tomorrow -