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Monday, September 30, 2013

Gear what I am using : Toyota Estima/Tarago

When I arrived in NZ, I decided to buy a van to travel around in.

Bought a Toyota Estima from a guy in Auckland who finds campers retired from hire firms, and reconditions them for backpackers.

This van started off Metallic blue, then it was converted by Spaceship rentals and repainted orange and white. Finally a layer of cream was applied.

I bought this van DESPITE the high mileage, more then 300,000 km. My theory is that she's proved herself to be pretty indestructible.
Close to four hundred thousand!
I reckon she was born some time between Tuesday and Thursday. There is a theory that cars built on a Monday and Friday have manufacturing problems. Factory workers are depressed having to be back at work on the Monday, and they are thinking about the weekend on the Friday, so more errors in construction are made.

Living in the camper is like living in a boat. I keep cracking my head on door sills.

Jen (I've christened her after the girl on the IT crowd series) hates hard cornering and steep incline s but otherwise she loves to run.

Something to reflect the sun back out the expansive windscreen is pretty much mandatory.

My whole life is packed inside this metal shell
I've got everything contained within a series of plastic boxes such as the toilet, and food stuffs.

A mini wine cellar in the boot.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Gear what I am using : Moshie Bass Burger pocket speaker

Saw a girl using a version of this (click here) and decided to pick one up when I was visiting Oz.

I've used this micro speaker attached to my phone while gardening or painting walls, and hooked up to my laptop lying in bed watching movies.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Gear what I am using : Solio solar charger

I've had this for ages and there are better versions now. Works well and is a good battery backup.

Charge the battery from the sun or from any USB source such as a computer.

Can be propped up with a pen to angle the collection surface towards the sun.

Older version was bundled with a bag full of connectors. Happy to say that the world seems to have standardized on a USB port.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Gear what I am using : Kuhl travel pants

September is 'gear' month on Yoomimoomi.

I've been a fan of 'convertible pants' since I discovered them in a camping store in the U.K.
I particularly like the option of unzipping the lower section of leg resulting in a pair of shorts.

Kuhl gearmakes the best that I have found so far.
These trousers also have dome clasps on the leg hem in case I need more ankle room for boots.

The pockets are made out of mesh so when the pockets are unzipped, a nice draft effect is produced up the legs, and across the testicles.

I liked these pants so much that I went out and bought a couple of extra, just so I didn't have to go through the hassle of looking for replacements after wearing them out.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Gear what I am using : Gopro camera : Software update

Gopro has some released 'Gopro Studio', some free video editing software that does some nice stuff such as fish-eye removal.

My main bugbear with it is that one has to 'transcode' the video from the camera into Gopro's Cineform format.
The software should ether work with the raw MP4 video, or Gopro should support Cineform in the camera.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Gear what I am using : Gopro camera

September is 'gear' month on Yoomimoomi. 

Holidays are hazardous time for delicate electronic devices like cameras.
Environments such as sand, swimming pools, cocktails, vomit, and concrete can ruin lens, short out electronics, and split cases.

What we need is a camera that can survive life’s hard knocks.
GoPro cameras are a lens poking out of a matchbox sized plastic case, wrapped in a protective waterproof shell that is capable of withstanding depths of up to 197 feet (60 meters). Drop the camera and the case takes the impact.