A great sailing Mate – Kernsie inspired me to put a 16 foot skiff mast and mainsail on Legato, which doubled or maybe even trebled the power- awesome.

Shed mate Kernsie was a great mentor for me in my lust for power, and also for simple sailing while cruising, in fact for all facets of SAILING – thanks Mate!


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Climate Change


If the world heats up, we’ll survive,


unless we find out how to CREATE the Greenhouse effect to keep warm.

19 years ago I read Peter Sawyers Book ‘The Greenhoax Effect’ – it opened my eyes to what was really happening and not just what we are being told. At the time of print, we were being told to sell our beachside homes and move inland – The GreenHoax Effect predicted we were actually heading into a period of drought and the best investment was a water truck- he was right!!

Greenhoax Effect

The book pointed out that chlorofluorocarbon gas (CFC) which had just been banned because it supposedly was depleting the ozone layer, was actually heavier than air, you could pour it into a bucket and it stayed there- so how was it getting into the ozone?? Most interestingly, the patent for it, owned by Giant Chemical Company DuPont, was running out. DuPont actually donated money to the research for a new gas, and guess who owns the patent on HCFC? Yep – DuPont

Reading the Greenhoax Effect made me look closely at news reports- was a scientist mentioned by name ? or just ‘THEY say…”. For over 20 years I’ve listened and read a lot about climate change, and formed my own opinions.

If the world cools down we’re in trouble, when the next Ice Age arrives we are going to need to keep warm for maybe 16,000 years– will we get paid back all out carbon credits then?

UPDATE: August 2011. When I first posted this article, the supposed problem was called ‘Global Warming’, then the Northern hemisphere had a seriously cold winter. Oops, ‘Global WARMING ‘ ? Apparently not.  So the name subtly altered to ‘Climate Change’ – which covers both too hot and too cold. About as useful as a weather forecast for ‘sunny with rainy periods’.

Carbon Tax: When we were first invited to pay a Carbon ‘offset’, I knew it would eventually be a tax.

Lets get this straight, the proposed tax is not about CARBON it’s about CO2, a gas that we exhale.

If CO2 is so deadly to the planet, it suggests that we weren’t designed correctly in the first place- hmmm who should we sue? I think Billy Connolly already had a go at that (The Man Who Sued God Movie 2001)

Professor Brian J O’Brien who was closely involved in the Apollo moon missions became involved in climate issues a long time ago. He was the Director of Enviroment and Protection in Perth early 70’s.  He said the idea to reduce emissions by 20% at the 1988 Toronto conference on emissions was created by a half day workshop, by about 20 of the scientists at the conference.

They decided they wanted to reduce the demand for electricity and they thought a ‘challenging figure’ would be 10%.
They also said they wanted to increase the efficiency with which it’s used  and thought a ‘challenging figure’ would be 10%.

They added them together and that’s the Toronto target of 20%, but that then became adopted as if it was scientifically backed up instead of being ‘plucked from the entrails of Toronto’

Makes me wonder how many other targets and schemes have been plucked so carelessly – hmm can anyone say ‘CARBON TAX’ !!!!

So lets get some facts straight- where does the heat for Global warming come from? There’s only one place – THE SUN.

Here’s my view on the issue –


Without the sun, the temperature on the earth would be about the temperature of space, around -270C.

The amount of solar energy reaching the earth is not constant, but varies in several independent cycles of different degrees of magnitude, which may or may not reinforce each other.

These cycles include a 100,000-year cycle, which results from the elliptical orbit of the earth around the sun, a 41,000-year cycle, which results from the tilt of the earth on its axis, a 23,000-year cycle which results from changes in direction of the earths axis relative to the sun, and an 11-year sunspot cycle, during which solar radiation increases and then declines.

Each 100,000-year peak in radiation appears to last about 15,000 to 20,000 years, and each has been coincident with massive surges of carbon dioxide and methane (the green house gasses), into the atmosphere, causing de-glaciation of the Polar and Greenland ice caps.

Surges of these greenhouse gasses have always been vastly greater than the amounts currently being generated by burning fossil fuels. For example, the most recent 100,000-year cycle raised sea levels 400 feet in the first 10,000 years, but since then sea levels have risen very little. In the current warming period, sea levels are rising only about 3 millimeters per year, and temperatures over the last 100 years have risen a modest 0.6 of a degree C.

Superimposed on this latest 100,000-year peak have been 6 secondary warming periods, each coincident with additional surges of carbon dioxide and methane, lasting about 200 years and then subsiding. Each of these previous warming periods was warmer than the current warming period, and current temperatures are below the median for the last 3000 years. No human industry involved!

There are thousands of scientific papers in the geological literature that show massive climate changes, massive changes in Earth History, which are totally unrelated to human activity. If you take a holistic view of the earth’s history you would be hard pushed to argue that the slight changes that are now recorded are anything else but natural changes.

What we are seeing today with this movement of ‘Human Induced Climate Change’ is a religious/political movement which is frightening people witless. Paying a tax on carbon emissions is akin to people buying an ‘Indulgence’ in the Middle Ages- all your sins were forgiven.

Joanne Nova, A freelance science presenter, writer, professional speaker & former TV host and author of The Skeptic’s Handbook, posts a lot of scientific climate facts on her website. Each facts is credited, there is information and graphs. “It wasn’t CO2: Global sea levels started rising before 1800” has tidal data going back to the 1800’s.  Much more reading linked from her  Climate Science page.

Ian Rutherford Plimer (born February 12, 1946) is an Australian geologist, academic and businessman, and professor of mining geology at the University of Adelaide. He says-

“We have had massive climate changes in historical times over as short a period as twenty years. The change from 1280 to 1303 was profound (from the Medieval Climate Optimum to the Little Ice Age) – that was a time when Greenland had Barley and Cattle. Thats amazing!!

We’ve had a massive increase in CO2 in previous times geologically, where temperatures have changed very slightly but CO2 went up to 5% in one geological time and up to 20% in another. That change is very significant compared to the changes we are now getting which are measured only in parts per million.

If we look at the amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere by human activity, it really is quite small compared with the degassing of the ocean, with CO2 released from life, CO2 released from geological process such as volcanic activity. Most of those are not documented in the current arguments.

There’s a great body of evidence showing the amount of CO2 released by natural geological process’s; for instance there are 10,000 earthquakes a year and every time you break a rock you release the 3 main greenhouse gasses- Water Vapour, Methane & Carbon Dioxide. Another process never mentioned is the swarms of earthquakes in mid ocean ridge areas which herald the rise of molten rock, that releases a huge amount of gas into the oceans most of which is dissolved and released later on ocean currents.

We are bombarded with information that humans are changing climate – this can only be valid IF we ignore astronomy & IF we ignore Geology.

In Geology we have seen massive climate changes, we’ve seen sea levels go up and down. No-one has any problem with climates changing because they’ve always changed. What has to be demonstrated is that any of the very slight changes that we can measure now are related to human activities and actually not natural processes. “

Water vapour is the largest component of Greenhouse gasses, yet it is the one gas that humans don’t have control over.

Water Vapor H2O 36 – 72 %
Carbon Dioxide CO2 9 – 26 %
Methane CH4 4 – 9 %
Ozone O3 3 – 7 %

My Conclusion –

I’m convinced there is, was and always will be, Climate Change, but not that Humans are the cause. I think the Carbon Tax is just another tax. All the evidence I have read points towards a continuing global pattern, with cycles within cycles.

I doubt that taxing CO2 will prove to be much more than another way to tax us. However, it makes good sense that we use this time as an opportunity to clean up our act, for the long term good of the planet, that makes total sense.


Some of the information quoted here, from –

Ian Rutherford Plimer: an Australian geologist, academic and businessman, and professor of mining geology at the University of Adelaide.

Dr. D. Bruce Merrifield: a former Undersecretary of Commerce for Economic Affairs and Professor Emeritus of the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. He holds Masters and Doctoral degrees in physical organic chemistry and currently is a member of the Visiting Committee for Physical Sciences at the University of Chicago.

1. Science, August 26, (2005); Science Feb. 28 (1997) pp1267; Science News, Feb3, (2007) Vol. 171, pp67; Science Vol. 312, June 9 (2006) pp1485-89. http://www.Skymetrics.US/background/glossey.php -21k

2. Science, June 6, (2006) pp1454; A.V. Federov, P.S. Dekens et al, The Pliocene Paradox, Science, Vol. 312, June 9, (2006) pp1485-89; D.R. MacAyeal, Dept. Geophysical Sciences, Univ. of Chicago,

3. Kenneth Clark, Civilization, Harper and Row, (1969), pp33; Arthur B. Robinson, Noah E. Robinson, Science (1996); L.D. Keigwin, The Little Ice Age and Medieval Warm Period in the Sargasso Sea, Science, Vol. 274, Nov. 29, (1996) pp 5292;

4. The End of Angkor, Science, Vol. 311, March 10, (2006).

5. Gerald Dickens, A Methane Trigger for Rapid Warming?, Science, Vol 299, Feb. 14, (2003); Seth Borebstein, Methane A New Climate Threat, Nature, ; C. Frankenberg, J.F. Meirink et al. Assessing Methane ; C. Frankenberg, J.F. Meirink et al. Assessing Methane Emissions From Global Space-Borne Observations, Science, Vol. 308, May 13, (2005).

6. Charles Higham, Civilization of Angkor; pp14-16

7. Methane Since 1684, Climate and Environmental Physics, Physics Inst of Bern, Sidlerstrassa 5, Switzerland.

8. Hudson Canyon Map:; Wallace Broeker et al. Earth Observatory, Columbia Univ. Lecture at Amer Geographic Society, Baltimore, Spring 1999.

9. Severinghouse, Science, Vol. 286, Oct. 29 (1999) pp 930-4.

10. D.F. Ferretti, J.B. Miller et al, Unexpected Changes to the Global Methane Budget over the Past 2000 Years, Science, Vol. 309, Sept. 9 (2005).

11. Mysterious Stabilization of Atmospheric Methane May Buy Time in Race
to Stop Global Warming, Geophysical Research Letters, Nov. 23 (2006). Mysterious Stabilization of Methane, Scientific American, Nov. 21 (2006).

12. C&EN, Aug 8, (2005) pp16

13. Science, Feb 28 (1997) pp1267; Geothermal Geophysical, Geosystems Vol. 10 (2001) pp1029.

14. I.S.A. Isakreacta, et al, Radiation Forcing of Climate, Inter-Government Panel on Climate Change (2003).

15. Urban Renaissance Inst., http://www.; Eva Bauer, Martin Clausen, V. Broukin, Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 30, No. 6 (2003) pp127

16. Milankovitch Cycles – Wikipedia Encyclopedia

17. Richard Mueller, Gordon MacDonald (1977) Glacial Cycles and Astronomical Forcing

18. J. Howard Maccabee,, (colloquium)


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Cairns Show n Shine 2010


A quick bit of filming at the Cairns Swap Meet & Show n Shine, run by the All American Car Club of Cairns. An annual event that keeps growing! Music by Johno’s Blues Band



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Can Opener One Touch Review


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Continuous Ink System


My continuous Ink System is brilliant, there are 100mls of each colour which lasts a long time and refilling is very easy.

I’ve been refilling ink cartridges for 14 years, it’s extremely cost effective but can be a little messy. I first heard about CIS around 7 years ago and last year I decided to get one. I had some problems with the cheap Chinese system I bought and I contacted an Aussie company who were extremely helpful, even though it was not their system. More on that after the video.



The cheap chinese copy that I originally bought was not recognised by the printer. I spent 3 ink covered days trying everything to make it work. I rang the supplier and he tried to help, but he didn’t know why it wouldn’t work. In desperation, while searching the net for some clues, I filled in the contact form at Rihac, asking for help even though it wasn’t their system. I got a quick reply, they asked for a photo of my system and once they saw it, they directed me to a chinese website where it was available for $12 (I paid $155). They told me why it wasn’t working –  the supplied cartridges were too low and going under the beam that reads the chips on the cartridges, it wasn’t a system for my printer. They also told me that the ink was not good quality.

They really knew their stuff, I was impressed. I got a full refund for the dud system and bought a system from Rihac which I am really happy with. Rihac also advised me to get a new printer rather than a CIS for my old Canon, because the Canon CIS might not be suitable when I replaced the printer.

I had read that the new version of my Canon Ip4200 had smaller cartridges and the reviews were not very good. Rihac advised me that the Epsom TX700 used less ink and had better longevity, so I bought an Epsom TX700W from Harvey Norman and ordered the Rihac CIS for that printer.

I’m really happy to put in a good word for Rihac  they helped me out and really know printers and ink. Their ink is high quality, the system comes with a coloured booklet of instructions, syringe, screwdriver, caps etc, the cartridges are already connected, there is a reset button on them to reset the chips when they think they are empty, if air gets into the carts there is a silicone plug through which a syringe needle is pushed and air is easily removed. The ink container is already full of 600mls of ink- all for around $160.

 The instructions are clear, I had my new CIS working within 5 minutes. Refill ink is cheap and sent promptly. This system has been faultless for me.


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Sansa Fuse Review


Review of my Sansa Fuze 8gb Mp4 player –

UPDATE  29th August 2013: My brilliant Sansa Fuze has finally died. I think the battery has worn out. I used the fuze every day, usually for at least an hour. Last year i dropped it onto a tiled floor and the case split open, I supa glued it back together and it worked fine.

I bought a sansafuze+, the new model. Instead of the rotary wheel it works by touch and several times I accidentally reset or changed what I was listening to. I mainly listen to audio books which have been recorded from tapes, losing the signal to identify chapters. The book files are usually more than 5 hours long and refinding my place after accidentally touching the fuse and resetting it was very, very slow and annoying. So I have bought a sansa clip zip which has manual buttons. It is working fantastically, but I’ll wait a few weeks before giving it the official thumbs up.

UPDATE 14th May 2012: I’ve had the Sansa Fuze for nearly 2 years now. It is brilliant. I also have an iPod and everything I want to do on the iPod is annoyingly controlled by iTunes, I’m always having to google how to move or rename a file etc. With the Sansa Fuze, moving files is simple windows file moving technology- copy and paste or drag n Drop – too easy.

The only thing the iPod does better is audio recording. The sansa fuse picks up a voice CLOSE to it, but is not good at recording things like lectures.

The Sansa Fuze battery life is fantastic, the controls are easy to understand. When this one fails I will another Sansa Fuze, and that’s the best testimonial.

I use it daily and can’t do without it.


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Beautiful singing


Bobby McFerrin sings Bach and simultaneously the audience sing Ave Maria – great voice, great talent- this is beautiful

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Diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis (DISH)



D.I.S.H Facebook Group

Also known as Forestier’s disease, Diffuse Idiopathic Skeletal Hyperostosis causes stiffness in your upper back and may also affect your neck and lower back. Some people experience diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis beyond the spine in areas such as their heels, ankles, knees, hips, shoulders, elbows and hands.”

Quoted from the Mayo Clinic

The Symptoms may include – Stiffness, Pain, Loss of range of motion, difficulty swallowing or a hoarse voice

Risk factors can include – long term use of retinoids, possibly excess vitamin A, being Male, age over 50 and having Diabetes II/raised insulin levels.

More at the mayo clinic –

Complications –
Tests –
Treatment –


Thanks to Steve who posted below, who found a US healthforum with a few people mentioning they have DISH –

If you have been diagnosed with D.I.S.H I’d like to hear from you and we can share info. Please fill in the comment form below –


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Perfect Time & Place


What would be your Perfect Time & place ? 

I’ve always thought I was extremely lucky to be alive in the 1960’s. It was an exciting era and relatively free compared to the restrictions we now have in every area.

As a Musician and also a Car nut I completely agree with Rob Forrester of the Go-Betweens when he said,

“I wish I’d been in San Francisco in 1965-1966″ –

“All the major players were there, bands were forming but hadn’t made their first albums yet and there was a lovely feeling of shared ideas, shared houses. The Hippy world was coming on, people were enjoying it but it hadn’t been on the front cover of Time Magazine yet.

It was that world where men started to grow their hair down on their shoulders, people were getting into Eastern religion, adventurous fantastic Rock n roll was being made. For a couple of years in 1965-66, that was a fantastic world”

(conversation Hour, Richard Fidler 18 Nov 2009 )

What year & Date would you choose for your Perfect Moment in time?

Agree or Disagree, but let me know by posting your year and reasons in the comments box at the bottom.


Music, Cars, Peace and Love – they were all there in 1965.

Here’s more on what it was like, the Atmosphere, the Cars, the Music –


In 1965 San Francisco became one of the liveliest cities in the US. The poets of the “Beat generation” moved there; the “Diggers” turned the Haight Ashbury district into a “living theater”. Mario Savio founded the “Free Speech Movement” at the University of California at Berkeley, where sit-ins and marches were supported by the likes of Country Joe McDonald.

McClure Dylan Ginsberg

McLure, Dylan & Ginsberg

There was excitement in the air. In the summer of 1965 a San Francisco band, the Charlatans, and their hippy fans took over the “Red Dog Saloon” in Virginia City (Nevada), and came up with the idea of playing a new kind of music for a new kind of audience. The Warlocks (later renamed the Grateful Dead) got hired by Ken Kesey to play at his “acid tests” (LSD parties), where the band began performing lengthy instrumental jams, loosely based on country, blues and jazz.


The Warlocks- later became  The Grateful Dead

In October of that year, the Family Dog Production organized the first hippy party at the “Long Shoreman’s Hall”. Following the success of that “festival”, avenues for San Francisco’s new bands sprang up all around.

Those acts embodied the pacifist ideals that had been promoted by Bob Dylan, but with less political stance. Theirs was a philosophy of life (“peace , love and drugs”) in direct consequence of what Dylan had preached, but  much closer to Buddhist philosophy.


Hippies gathered not to march, but to celebrate; not to protest but to rejoice. The spiritual experience was more important than political experience. This represented a dramatic change from the times of rock’n’roll, when the music was an (ultimately violent) act of rebellion.


Cars were every bit as fantastic as the music. The muscle car era had just begun. In 1965-66 the top option V8 engines were around 425 cubic inches, that’s 7 Litres. Cars from this era had character, the designers were allowed to be individuals, and cars didn’t all look the same.

66 Pontiac GTO

The Pontiac GTO


The Shelby Mustang



The Stingray



The Buick Wildcat



 late in 66 the Chevrolet Camaro



1965 Ford Thunderbird


Carol Shelby built the Cobra sportscar and then the hot Shelby Mustang. The Pontiac GTO is credited with starting the muscle car era and the Mustang for making muscle cars popular. The Buick Wildcat was powerful, sleek for its size and the Corvette Stingray was becoming a legend. Plymouth Fury & Barracuda, Buick Riviera & Toronado, Chevrolet Chevelle, Impala & Caprice – all these cars were large and had options for huge gas guzzling 7 Litre V8 engines. They were classic and they had style.

The movie Bullit, with it’s famous car chase down the hilly streets of San Francisco, premiered two years later in 1968, but it was no doubt inspired by some of these cars and they way they were driven.



The Grateful Dead, considered by many to be “the” greatest rock band of all times, were a monument of San Francisco’s hippy civilization and the psychedelic civilization of the 1960s. Their greatest invention was the lengthy, free-form, group jam, the rock equivalent of jazz improvisation. This became known as ‘Acid Rock’ which came to represent escape from the Establishment, artistic freedom and the alternative lifestyle.


The Grateful Dead

Jefferson Airplane embodied the spirit and the sound of the hippy era and had a formidable group of talents that redefined every part of Rock music. Their early singles, Somebody To Love and White Rabbit, helped establish psychedelic-rock as a musical genre.


The Santana Blues Band, later simply called Santana formed in 1966. Big Brother and the Holding Company formed in San Francisco in 1965 as part of the same psychedelic music scene that produced the Grateful Dead, Quicksilver Messenger Service and Jefferson Airplane. They are best known as the band that featured Janis Joplin as their lead singer.



Not so famous bands of the time (Charlatans, Ace of Cups, The Vejtables, Chocolate Watchband to name a few) contributed to an atmosphere of experimentation, improvisation, and ambivalence about the notion of commercial success.

The Charlatans were credited with being the first band to take LSD just before a gig and also producing the first Psychedelic poster.

In other parts of the music world the Beatles had chart toppers with Ticket to Ride, Yesterday, Michelle. The Rolling Stones had a #1 hit with Satisfaction and The Who had a chart hit with My Generation. The Doors got together in California 1965; The Beach Boys had a hit with Help me Rhonda & Do You Wanna Dance –

“It was all happening, Man”

1965-66 in San Francisco would have been an exciting place to live.

Peace Man~!       


Post your perfect year in the box below 😉


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Yamaha CP70B repair


Fix the Yamaha CP70B electronics by eliminating them altogether and
make the CP70B sound better!!!

Bypassing that old 1980’s circuitry is simple and makes the Yamaha Electric Grand more reliable.



My Yamaha CP70b Electric Grand Piano has been very reliable and it stays in tune for ages. 3 years ago the electronic part of it stopped working. I found the schematics for it at , and a forum for it at and I finally diagnosed the problem to a poor connection on one of the pins.

While searching the net for answers I discovered that the Yamaha can be connected to an amp, UNPOWERED, just like a guitar. This bypasses ALL of the circuitry, which is one less thing that can go wrong, but more importantly,

The bypass is so simple it can be done by twisting wires around 3 connectors, no soldering or electrical knowledge necessary. I tested the piano by playing for 10 minutes or so using the onboard pre amp that I had fixed and then using this bypass method. The difference was quite audible, less bass boom being most noticable. The stereo tremelo effect is lost but that is a small price to pay.

I preferred the bypass sound so I decided to make it permanent. I didn’t cut any wires and the process is completely reversible.

Simply connect the WHITE wire from the piezo’s that goes IN to the board, with the RED and WHITE wires that come OUT of the board. Obviously these wires must be disconnected first from the board. Leave the EARTH wires connected.


At the left end of the circuit board behind the Volume control, these RED and WHITE wires are pushed onto pins in the board. They go directly to the OUTPUT – XLR and Jack sockets.


Output pins


At the right end of the board the positive WHITE wire and it’s Earth come from the Piezo pickups and go into the board. You can see the pin and the wire connector I have pulled off it.




Disconnect the RED & WHITE Output wires. These are the LEFT & RIGHT output wires and need to be connected together. Solder or wrap them together and join them to a length of insulated wire.


Output soldered


Solder or wrap the other end of the new piece of wire around the connector on the WHITE input end and then tape it up.


White soldered


The circuit is now bypassed. I take the output from the mono jack sockets to the CD input on a Yamaha home stereo amp and I have about the same volume as a standard piano. I am enjoying the new sound, it hasn’t lost that signature CP70B timbre, but the bass is much clearer and more natural.

Here’s an overview showing the grey wire I used to bypass the old preamp. The Yamaha doesn’t need any power now and I can undo this bypass simply by unsoldering the wires and poushing them back onto their connector pins.

Kudos to whoever invented this simple fix for old electronics. I got my info from John Smithson at the Yamaha CP70B forum. Thanks John!




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