Chicken Feeder

August 19, 2013 · Posted in Chickens, Engineering, Photography · Comment 

When we got the chickens I soon tired of refilling the small feeders every couple of days, so, being the miser that I am, I soon built a feeder with a 5 gallon bucket and a planter tray.  This was a nice improvement, a couple weeks worth of feed could be placed in the bucket and I didn’t have to worry about it so often.  The only problem was that the birds spilled a large quantity of feed onto the ground.  They think they are spoiled and refused to eat it off of the ground.  I was fed up when they were going through 5 gallons of feed in one week.  6 birds should not be able to eat that much, and most of it was wasted on the ground.  Not wanting to spend a large amount of money on a bigger commercial feeder I came up with my own solution.  Again it involved a 5 gallon bucket (a re-purposed one that used to hold their water (That upgrade will follow in another post), some PVC pipe, and a cheap metal feeder.  I cut a hole in the bucket to accept the pvc pipe, and a hole in the feeder to accept the pvc pipe.  After a 45 degree cut in the pvc pipe to allow the feed to flow into the feeder, and some pvc connections, it works great.  Only when spoiled or wet feed clumps together in the pipe clogging up the process do I have to get in and clean everything out.  Otherwise, the bag of feed now lasts about 5 weeks, longer than ever before, and there is virtually no spillage or spoilage.  Happy birds make happy, healthy eggs!


Outside of coop portion.



Inside of coop portion.


Happy Birthday Linux

August 25, 2011 · Posted in Engineering, Friends, Tools · Comment 


Today you are 20 years old.  We have become good friends since I met you 12 years ago. You have grown quite a bit and are quite capable now, and I have grown to understand you quite well.  You have been a much better friend than Microsoft as you don’t hide things from me, and you serve me just how I need you to. You let me tell you what I need you to do and you do it.  Microsoft asks me what what to do but doesn’t do it how I request.  So I left him behind in favor of better company.  You keep me safe from the malevolent youths of our era, and keep viruses and spies away from my family.  You even keep my wife’s friend Microsoft safe, safe from himself sometimes.  I’m not too fond of him but she is, so I tolerate him to the best of my ability, thank you for working with him even when he doesn’t want to work with you.  So you know I do have to give him the boot every day, or he becomes unable to function, I’d rather not do it, he is slow to go down and slow to get back up and I feel like it is a daily waste of time.  If I don’t monitor him while he gets back up sometimes he falters and is still down when I come calling.  Perhaps being slow and stupid is part of his upbringing.  I don’t think I have ever had to give you the boot except when I have had to move you, and you always have come back quickly.  For your kind and faithful service I thank you.

Your Friend,

Server Admin

Happy PI Day

March 14, 2011 · Posted in Engineering, math · Comment

Alaskan Way Earthquake Simulation, Seattle WA

October 30, 2009 · Posted in Engineering · 2 Comments 

Video produced by WSDOT showing earthquake damage to the Alaskan Way viaduct and seawall.  Pretty scary to think about, pretty cool to watch.

Masters Thesis Finished

July 31, 2009 · Posted in Engineering, School · 2 Comments 

I’m all finished with my master’s thesis. All that is left is make 4 copies on expensive paper, and take them to the ASU bookstore and spend too much to get them bound.  Of course Murphy has had a hand in my life the last couple days, our nice color duplex laser printer needs a new drum and transfer belt.  $300 is too much to pay right now, and I need them today, not in a couple weeks or whenever UPS delivers them, so we have to buy a new printer, which will be cheaper than printing it at Kinko’s.

You can download my thesis following this link:

My abstract:

Using a pavement design model presented by Hong et. al. the pavement structural number was computed in a 0.1 degree grid pattern for the entire state of Arizona. This model takes into account the expansion potential and suction envelope within the subgrade soil using a model nearly identical to that used in post-tensioned slab design. The pavement structural number for each of the points on the grid was also obtained using the pavement design model currently endorsed by the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT). It was determined by comparing these two models that the method proposed by Hong et al., referred to as the “Texas method,” determines the structural number to be larger than that obtained using the ADOT model. In locations with soils with high expansion potential, the structural number estimated by the Texas Method was three to four times the structural number provided by the Arizona Method. Pavement performance data is needed to determine which method provides a more accurate design.

In order to properly model the Texas method, data was collected from various sources and analyzed. Climatic information was collected and maps generated. Soil property maps were also generated. Sensitivity analyses were performed on the mean principal stress compression index and on the wetting and drying cycle frequency. The latter parameter was analyzed for wetting and drying cycle frequencies of one day, one week, one month, and one year. It was found that the frequency contributed greatly to the depth of suction equilibrium and had a large effect on the structural number estimated by the Texas method.

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