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since 08/10/2010


Vivid Dog Collar with LED lights 16/08/2013

A dog collar with a Vivid difference

Kidde 7DCO Carbon Monoxide 16/07/2013

When this little Kidde screams, your life is in danger.

Samsung Galaxy S III i9300 16GB 3G 14/07/2013

The Galaxy 3 is the phone for me

Stagg M20 Bluegrass Mandolin in Violinburst 14/07/2013

My Stagg M20 Mandolin looks rather like a morphed violin

Stagg M20 Bluegrass Mandolin in Violinburst I have very fond memories of when I was a toddler visiting my gran, she had an old mandolin, strung with piano strings... sacrilege really, but to me it was a toy and like all kids I liked to make a noise, and what a noise it made. Never did I imagine than many years later I would be purchasing one to play for real. At some point a while back, I wistfully realised that I was one of many who had once, but no longer, enjoyed the pleasures of playing a musical instrument, and regretted allowing all those precious hours of practise and years of enjoyment, slip away. Then I got to thinking... Why not re-acquaint myself with the joys of making my own music. I was familiar with stringed instruments and knew that mandolins were strung with the same strings, G,D,A and E, as a violin, only in duplicate, so would not be too difficult to master a few simple tunes. I checked on Amazon and eBay and found a wide range of models and prices. I only wanted a cheap instrument to strum and discovered a new, unused one on eBay going for less than those on Amazon. Indecisive, as ever, I ummmd and ahhhd, should I, shouldn’t I bid? The sale was ending that day, yet I retired still not having made any decision. Then at about midnight, just as I was dropping off to sleep, I suddenly regretted not bidding, raised myself from half-slumber and logged in to find the bidding had ended but the instrument had not had any bidders. I contacted the seller to tell him that I was interested in purchasing the ...

Bye Bye Standby Energy-Saving Kit 02/11/2011

Plug into peace of mind

Bye Bye Standby Energy-Saving Kit I am all for saving energy, be it my own or that supplied by the electricity board to my TV, computer, and radio, all of which are plugged into sockets, around the house; none of which are not easy to reach, in that they are usually hidden behind heavy pieces of furniture. Nowadays, devices such as television sets, and radios remain on standby, even when switched off. I am led to believe that if the electricity supply is not switched off at the wall there is a constant leakage of valuable energy, hence, wastage of power into and through the appliance - not to mention waste of precious pennies. I checked this out, by making sure all my electrical appliances were switched off and looking at the disc on my electricity meter - sure enough the little disc was turning, albeit very, very slowly, registering energy usage. One day, almost three years ago, whilst browsing through one of our local stores, I noticed what claimed to be anenergy saving kit A package of three adaptor plugs and a thin remote control. Intrigued, and with a bit of cash to spare, decided to buy and try. I cannot remember exactly what I paid for the kit, but it was less than £20. They can still be purchased to this day for around £18 on line and in one store; I saw very recently similar kits, made by different companies, which have the exact same functions for around the same price. Amazon sell a starter kit, with one adaptor and the control for £10.80 and also packs containing just two adaptors for those ...

Backgammon 18/09/2011

Not for making bacon butties, Backgammon is for playing

Parkside Cordless Drill PABS 18 A1 31/08/2011

One drill you won't see your dentist use

leXpress Whistling Kettle 22/08/2011

My Whistler is no oil painting

Compaq Presario CQ60-150EG 10/08/2011

Presario, Presario.. where for art thou Presario ?

Compaq Presario CQ60-150EG What I know and understand about the inner workings of a laptop or computer can be written in large capitals around the milled edge of a postage stamp; but then, I do not need to know the inner workings of a car to be able to drive one, and so it is with my laptop, a Compaq CQ60 -305EA Laptop. A brief history of how I came to own my present laptop My very first laptop was a Freebie from PC World, in August 2007, when Orange offered free laptops to anyone signing up with their broadband package. Well, I could never resist a freebie. Until then I had refused to entertain the idea of inviting the World Wide Webb into my home – despite the constant nagging from my nephew. However, the lure of a free laptop was too much even for me to resist. I remember the seller saying to me that I would be better off putting a few pounds towards a faster machine than the one on offer. I replied, that I had all the patience in the world – he laughed and muttered, something to the effect that I may have now, but would soon want a faster system. He was so right, but it was not until I had scraped most of the lettering off the keyboard and thought the laptop was on its last legs, that I thought to replace it before it expired completely. Off I went to MicroBitz, our local computer shop, about 18 months ago. I told the sales man that I wanted a relatively inexpensive laptop that was faster than my old one. He showed me and demonstrated the latest Compaq CQ model, priced then at £346.96 plus VAT ...

Durable Sherpa Soho Desk 05/08/2011

This Durable Sherpa made room on my desk for my elbows

Dirt Devil DD150 29/07/2011

My little devil is an angel in disguise

Stanley TR 250 Sharpshooter Plus Heavy Duty Staple/Brad Nail Gun 22/07/2011

This gun is legal and licensed to staple

Stanley TR 250 Sharpshooter Plus Heavy Duty Staple/Brad Nail Gun Introduction Anyone who has read my review on the chop saw will know I am building a shed from scratch. Another handy tool needed was a staple gun and staples to tack damp- proof sheeting to the outside of each frame, before nailing on the feather board. And, because I intend to insulate the inside and cover with thin hardboard, it would be quicker fastening this to the frame with staples rather than nails or screws – and less expensive. I was on a mission to get the best price for all my materials, getting quotes from three companies, the first and nearest of the three, failed to get the first order of timber because their quotes were highest. However, undaunted knowing that, with this particular firm, if I ummm and aaahd enough, prices would drop; I had dealt with them before, their policy seemed to be -Think of a number, treble it, add their age and divide by two to reach a price. I believe they get commission on all they sell. Their stock are not priced, but labelled with a bar code, and their blurb states “There is room for negotiation,” so negotiate I do. Since I do have an old stapler, but no staples, I was not considering purchasing another, but buying staples was proving more difficult than I had ever anticipated. I knew the size that would fit, but when asking in two separate stores for staples, there was an instant sucking in of air through pursed lips as they asked, what model stapler, as if they had already made up their minds that I knew nothing about ...

Mighty Bright Book Light 11/07/2011

It's mighty bright, mighty small and mighty useful

Duzzit Handy Hanger 06/07/2011

Duzzit or Duzzn't it?

Sunncamp Platinum Washing Line 04/07/2011

Hi-De-Hi Campers

Sunncamp Platinum Washing Line Introduction Although my camping days are over now, I found myself absolutely delighted to find this handy little washing line for sale in one of our local stores. “Why?” I hear you ask. Well, I am building a large shed to replace a couple of old dilapidated ones, but unfortunately, one pole of my old washing line was in the way and so had to be demolished along with the sheds. This, of course left me with nothing on which to hang my washing until the new shed was built and I could find an alternative solution to the problem. There were plenty of rotary lines to be had, but I needed all the space available to work in, so the only solution for me, seemed to be an inexpensive line, which could easily be folded and stored away until needed, after each use. The Sunncamp Platinum folded washing Line Sunflair Ltd, is a Chelmsford based company who specialise in quality camping equipment which go under the name of Sunncamp. The Platinum washing line is one of three designs for campers and for anyone interested, their website is They claim to be “Big enough to be competitive and small enough to care.” The Washing line comes with a strong nylon carry bag, with wide, comfy to carry, handle. When folded it measures 124cm x10cm x 10cm. (4’1” x 4” x 4”) When erected it measures approximately 132cm x 96cm x 96cm (4’5” x 3’3” x3’3”) The gun-metal coloured frame, made from a light weight metal material, steel or aluminium perhaps, weighs 3.25kg which is a little over ...
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