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Now in Pace

A lot has happened since I wrote my last update. Julie took her bar exam in Tampa, stayed with my parents for three weeks, and started her new job. We moved into our new house.

Julie started her new job the first Monday of August, but I did not move out of Gainesville until Friday, August 24. There were a few reason why I did not stay with my parents during that time. (1) The cats needed a place to stay. In the past, any time we have visited parents, we’ve always taken the cats with us. However, in recent years, Darwin has had difficultly traveling. He had a seizure once, and since then, we have to sedate him during long trips. The last time we boarded the cats, Deli got pretty sick which led to a pretty hefty vet bill. My parents don’t want use to have the cats in their house, so if I had come, we would have had to board the cats for three weeks, which would have been expensive and inhumane. (2) I had to be able to work, and although I have worked from my parents’ house in the past, their Internet connection (AT&T DSL) is slow and unreliable. (3) I had to go into the Jacksonville office during that time, and I also had to be present when the movers arrived, so I would have had to make multiple trips across the state had I not stayed in Gainesville.

So really, the objectives I had during that time were, (1) work, (2) an office visit in Jacksonville, (3) finish packing, (4) be there for the movers, and (5) take care of the cats. The move itself was okay, minus the fact that the cleaners (A Personal Elf) showed up over six hours late. The thought the movers did a good job. The only problem we have is that now our treadmill does not work. I hired some help to come look at the treadmill. They said the treadmill was most likely dropped and that the motor controller is damaged. We have a replacement part on the way.

Finishing up the wiring took a long time. The comm closet is all wired up, the workshop is connected, and all the jacks are connected. There is a pretty large dead zone in my wireless network that I am going to take care of soon. The workshop is a great place to work, but it is not without its problems. It has an acoustics problem that I am going to have to resolve, and the air conditioner unit is a bit loud. The biggest problem I have in the workshop is that I cannot get the humidity levels down. When I first came in, the humidity level was around 80%. Using the AC unit at 76 degrees and with a Eva Dry dehumidifier, I have the humidity level around 65%. I cannot seem to get it any lower than that. I’m not sure exactly what the source of the humidity is. My mom suggested that it may be because it is a concrete floor and that the humidity is coming from below. I don’t really know enough about this subject to guess.

I got the new 40″ TV in the living room in order. Umm… strangely enough, the TV we bought had an issue were it would turn on and set its volume high every night some seemingly random time between 1AM and 6AM. This happened for about five days, and I looked online to try to figure out what was going on. Apparently it was a known issue that was resolved with a firmware update (I didn’t even know consumers ever did firmware updates on TVs). I couldn’t actually find any response or instruction from the company; instead, I found other consumers that had figured it out. My guess is that some programmer got fired and added this little Easter egg on his way out the door. It was extremely creepy. However, after the firmware update, I haven’t had any trouble with it.

I still need to mount the 32″ TV in the fitness room. We put together a new elliptical for the fitness room, which, strangely enough, did not include an AC adapter to power it. Soon, I’ll have that room the way I want it, with the treadmill, TV, and Wii how I want it.

I really haven’t done any work on the antenna system yet. I need to have an entrance panel put onto the workshop, I need to rent a jackhammer and drive a ground rod and bond it to the workshop’s ground system, and I need to mount antennas. I am not 100% where I want the antennas. I am pretty sure I want to put the wifi antenna on the roof of the workshop, but I am not sure about the 146/440 J-Pole. I had considered the idea of putting up a utility pole, but that also doesn’t seem necessary to me. There are a number of tall oak trees fairly close to the workshop that I may just mount it in. These trees also form a line of trees that I think I could easily put a dipole in whenever I have an HF transceiver. There is so much I need to do, but it all costs money.

I haven’t done anything yet in the way of stargazing, but oh man it has been tempting. The sky is so much darker here than it was in Gainesville (not to mention Jacksonville). My ultimate plan has been to build a powered observation deck far out in my property, but that would require (1) clearing out some land, (2) building the deck, and (3) running an electrical line from the panel out to there.

The house warming party is coming September 29. Everyone I have invited has said they are coming. I don’t really know much about the details of the party, as I am being left out of the loop.

I’m thinking about making and posting some video tours.

UPDATE (Friday, September 14, 2012): I finally figured out the humidity issue in the workshop. The source of the humidity was a shock to me. The window AC unit itself was the source of the humidity. I figured this out through observation. The AC unit has four settings: Heat, Cool, Energy Saver, and Fan Only.

When the unit is on Energy Saver mode, it runs the fan for a few seconds every 5 minutes or so, I assume to check the air temperature. If the air is still cool, it turns off and checks again later. If the air is too warm, it then turns off the fan and then turns on the compressor a few moments later until the air is cool. During this time, I observe that the humidity level reduces rapidly.

When the unit is on Cool mode, the fan is always running. If the air is too warm, it turns on the compressor until the air is cool. Once cool, it goes back to fan only. I observe that the humidity level reduces when the compressor is on, but when the fan only is running the humidity increase rapidly.

To test this, I came in one morning. The humidity level was 75%. I then set the AC on cool set at 68 degrees. Within 5 minutes, the humidity level was 45%. I then set the AC back to 76 degrees. The compressor turned on and fan only came on. Within about a minutes, the humidity level was back above 70%. I then removed the humidity again by setting to 68 degrees, and then completely turned off the unit. The humidity level did not rapidly increase.

Based on my temperature/humidity meter, the best results come from setting the AC unit to Energy Saver at 72 degrees. This keeps the humidity between 50 to 55% and the temperature between 75 and 77 degrees with the ceiling fan left on when I am present. The only problem is at night, the humidity level creeps up to about 60%, but that’s certainly not the 80% I had been seeing. If I ever see the humidity go above 60%, I just run the AC on 68 degrees for a minute or two until it is around 45%.

So, I really don’t understand the Cool and Fan only settings. Is it literally just blowing in unconditioned air from outside? This might make sense in a desert, but it makes no sense at all in Florida.

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