Waterfall Batteries

We’re working on a solar system for waterfall so we can be off the grid. Eric came out with me today to install the larger batteries. We had to relocate them since there wasn’t room where the old one was. He brought out the soldering iron to make sure they last.

The batteries are installed and the power is on and working. We’ll have to come back another day and get the solar panels complete… Somebody forgot to bring drill bits 🙁

Hogan Haake

Steam Engine – 1/6/2017

Eric Ent from work came over with his model steam engine. He got it running recently and I found it fascinating. We thought trying the propane torch would really make it move, and it didn’t disappoint. It is a Wilesco steam engine, possibly a D4 model.

It worked much better with the propane torch, but we didn’t want to risk breaking the boiler due to excessive pressure. The whistle worked a little, but seemed to require more pressure that we wanted to provide. I spent the next few days researching steam engines, but it seems like it would take too much time and money for a full time hobby!

Hogan Haake

Saint Genevieve Ride – 10/30/2016

Two guys from the office, Jeff Hug, Eric Ent, and I decided to go for a Saturday morning motorcycle ride. Its fun to share hobbies and motorcycle people like to ride together. The plan was to ride down the river road in Illinois and catch the ferry to St. Genevieve to get back home. I love going on trips, so it should be no surprise that I arrived first.

While I was waiting, I went into the gas station looking for breakfast and coffee. This station is large, but it mostly sells alcohol, so I was relegated to a stale pastry and coffee.

It didn’t take long for Eric to show up on his Yamaha FZ-07 ready to ride after filling up.

Eric and I were wondering if Jeff would show up. We weren’t sure based on how far away he lived. We sent him a text and said we would give him fifteen more minutes before we left without him. Turns out that Jeff slept in and rode very fast to get out to us with time to spare before we gave up on him. His bike doesn’t have a ton of range due to a small fuel tank so he filled up as well.

With full tanks, we headed out to explore the riverside! We all followed Eric as he had done this ride before and had a vague sense of where to go. During the ride south, we paced a southbound train. Eventually after about an hour of riding, we got to the ferry crossing. It didn’t open till 9am giving us time to play around before it opened. We were quite concerned about the ramp to get on the ferry. The metal edges didn’t fit nicely against the pavement and looked bad for our tires.

We didn’t know what to think so we tried to get our minds off of it. We started by exploring the area around us.

Before we knew it, the ferry had arrived and it was our time. The guys asked me to go first as I said it wouldn’t be that bad. I picked a line and went slowly and everything worked out pefectly. The guys followed the same line behind me and we were all set to cross. This is always a fun time on a motorcycle as you always get off and walk around to check it all out. I was a bit worried as smoke continued out of the engine room of the tug, but it never stopped running and crossed without incident.

On the other side, I promptly rode up the ramp from the river to the road to meet Eric’s sister Alisa. She was going to join our group to make it a foursome. After a few moments talking to her, I saw Eric park his bike at the top of the rise and walk back down. This seemed like trouble so I excused myself and walked over. Trouble it was.

Jeff’s Suzuki C90 wouldn’t start. It was running perfectly the whole trip (I even rode it while waiting for the ferry). Eric and I pushed it up the hill to the top. It was decided to bump (push) start it. After a few tries with Eric and I panting for breath, it started up. All was not well with the electrical system as can been seen in the video below.

Eventually Jeff’s bike settled down and we were on the road. We decided to take I-55 straight north and get home ASAP. Unfortunately Jeff was almost out of fuel. Eric and his sister had departed earlier so it was just Jeff and I. Unfortunately, to fuel up, you have to turn the motorcycle off and use the ignition key to open the fuel tank. We made three laps around the gas stating trying to bump start his bike to no avail. After two tries, we eventually jump started it with cables from my bike to his.He made it home in after the final jump start to diagnose the issue.

It was quite the eventful ride and most of us had a great time!

Hogan Haake