22 December 2016

Keyport Slide 3.0 - Kickstarter

Keyport Pivot and Slide 3.0
I have had the Keyport Slide 2.0 since 2013.  In January of this year, the folks at Keyport introduced a Kickstarter campaign for their new Slide 3.0, along with a newly designed Pivot.

Keyport Slide 3.0

So far, I am/was very happy with the Slide 2.0.  Although, there were issues with the construction...mainly material choice...the plastic used could shatter if dropped.  Ask me how I know that one.  The aluminum construction of the Slide 3.0 (will hopefully) solve this minor issue.   You can see one of the chips on my 2.0 in the image below.  Besides, I am not a fan of the pivot system, not just Keyport's Pivot, pivot design systems in general.

The design of the 3.0 is similar to the 2.0.  There are slight changes due the change from plastic to metal.  For one, the 3.0 weighs a little more.  Well, of course it does, it is metal.  I like the added weight.

Slide 3.0 and Slide 2.0
The end cap is a much improved design.  It has a spring loaded latch.  On the 2.0, the end cap is sort of pressed in and locks in with tabs.  Well, if you happen to drop your Keyport 2.0...one of these tabs can break of...then you will have to look for your chassis, end cap, and the little piece of tab.  The fun part is finding a way to re-attach or repair the broken tab.  I tried superglue, solvents, welding the plastic tab back, and hot glue.  They all work for a while, but as soon as you need to remove the end cap for any reason (see photo above), you risk breaking the tab off again.  Oh, and if you happen to drop it again, you could get lucky and just have a chip somewhere....or you could snap the tab off again.  So, you can see how excited I was when a new - metal - version was being released.  Heck, at one point I thought about getting a new Slide 2.0 chassis, but luckily the Kickstarter campaign started.

One 'feature' that 2.0 users will miss when switching to the 3.0 is the little nub on one side of the Keyport chassis.  I use this everyday to feel which distinguish which side is which, especially in the dark.

Slide 2.0 nub vs smooth Slide 3.0
Above image shows nub (circled) that has been very helpful.  I may stick a little nipple on the 3.0 so I will know which side is 'up'.

Since I already had blades and inserts from the 2.0, when I got the new 3.0, I just transferred them over.  I even reused by buttons.  But, there was one insert that did not fit.  The LED light insert is too wide to fit.  I also had the problem of low battery life.

Keyport LED insert
If you have the LED insert and need to change the battery and/or want to fit it in your Slide 3.0, this next section may help.  Be careful and do this at your own risk...there is my disclaimer.

Tanget:  The LED insert kinda looks like a hoverboard.  And, why is it when I look up "hoverboard" on Google, I get those 'hands-free Segways'.  When I search "hoverboard", I should be bombarded by images from the Back to the Future trilogy, damn it!

Trim line
Since the insert is a little wide, you need to trim one side of the circuit board.  The dotted line above shows where you need to trim to, about 1.5mm.

Be careful to not go too deep. The red arrow shows the line where 'wire' that connects the battery to the switch.  Try not to cut this line.  If you do, that is okay.  You should be able to re-route the wire back to the switch.

Sanding to the line
On my LED insert, there was enough room to sand down and not hit the wire.  Note the holes on the circuit board, you can use these to 'rewire' if you happen to trim too much.

Now, battery removal.  The batteries are spot welded on to the contacts.  This is so the insert can slide in and out easily without catching on the walls of the chassis.  I do not have, or know if there is, an un-spot welder.  So, a solution is the drill out the spot weld.
Spot weld locations
There are eight spot welds.  Luckily, they have a slight dip, like a shallow pilot hole, so the drill bit you use should not travel as easily.  Better to have access to a drill press, but drilling by hand will work.

Battery drilling
As with all tools be careful.  After all, you are drilling into to a battery.  Take it slow.  Once you pass through the spot weld, the contact should pop up, no need to drill any deeper.  I would assume that heat from the drill on the battery is not the best combo.  Speaking of heat on a battery, spot welding a battery sounds stupid dangerous.

Drilled contacts
Once you have drilled through the contacts, the battery will pretty much fall out.  Just need to find the correct replacement.  The batteries that came with the insert were 3V CR1025, I used 1.55V 395.  I will be getting half the voltage of a brand new LED insert, but I was getting close to nothing on my factory batteries.  Good news is, I can switch out batteries anytime.

Tape down contacts to battery
Not only do I not have an un-spot welder, I also do not have a spot welder to weld the contacts back on to the batteries.  But, I have tape.  Find some thin tape, cut it to size and make sure the contacts are contacting the batteries and tape everything down.  Make sure there is tape on the sides...remember it was to wide to fit in the 3.0 slots?...well why would you add more thickness to it?

Slide insert into chassis

With both one edge trimmed to fit, new batteries replaced and taped, you can now slide in the insert into the chassis as you did on the 2.0.

Lights on!
It works!

After doing this, I realized the new design has an option for LED side plate.  It looks like there is an easier way to change batteries.

New LED side plate design

If you want one of these yourself, you can order from Keyport.

04 December 2016

BlazeCut - Automatic Fire Suppression System

You could say that have a car that is famous for catching on fire.  Why, there is even an incident at a local mall, one early October morning in 1985, where a DeLorean left flames in its track as it headed towards a crazed scientist and a teen-aged boy.  Of course, there are rumours that a dog was driving.

But besides that, there have been a handful of reports the past few years of DeLoreans engulfed in flames.  This is mainly due to old, cracking rubber fuel lines in the engine bay.  A few years ago, I had my fuel lines replaced with stainless steel lines.  Most recently, I got a new engine.  While everything is new and should run smooth, I figure it would be best to protect my investment.

Enter the BlazeCut Automatic Fire Suppression System.  The unit is a plastic tube filled with a extinguishing agent.  The system automatically triggers when excessive heat is detected.  Basically, the flames melt the plastic tube and the extinguishing agent is released.

BlazeCut Automatic Fire Suppression System
After seeing some videos of this thing in action, and reading about how many cars have been lost to fire, I purchased a set for my car.

What you get in the box
The system comes with the main unit, some zip ties, and a sticker.  The unit I got is the TV200FA, with 500g of HFC-236fa, tube length of 212 cm.

Installation is relatively simple.  I used the vents as anchor points to zip tie the tube to my engine cover.  The difficult part is fighting the curve of the tube.  It might have been smarter to undo the coiled tube and let it rest for a day or two before installation.

BlazeCut installed on engine cover
 I thought about mounting the tube along the inside of the engine bay.  Well, struggling with the coiled tube was hard enough.  Plus engine bay mounting would require installation of brackets to the walls.  It may also get in the way of the engine if and when maintenance needs to be performed.  The engine cover seems to be the better option for now.  Although, I might shift the 'C' opening towards the front of the car.
View from top, closed engine cover
Some say the vents on the engine cover may let the extinguishing agent escape.  I agree with those that say having this system gives you more time to get to a safe location in the event of a fire.

I hope this is the last time I have to write about fire and engine. 

UPDATE:  Dave Tavers of  DeLoreanDirectory.com and DeLoreanTalk.com has new information (via BlazeCut Owner, Josh Andersen), due to the DeLorean's vented engine cover, "Unfortunately that engine bay is too exposed to be a good application for BlazeCut.  You would require a larger bottle system from another company for your car."  Josh adds, "At the very minimum the TV400 (12’) would offer some protection, but with all of those vents the efficacy of the product would be severely reduced.  The BlazeCut C series would be appropriate but we have not gotten US approvals to import the system.  I do not have a competitive alternative to suggest but there are plenty of bottle systems out there and I would suggest having protection on an irreplaceable object you care about."

I will update if/when I have more information. Thank you.

01 December 2016


Home stretch, last month of the year.  I feel that there will be a last minute push to meet their numbers

1 December 2016
  505-207-1361  Albuquerque, NM - I believe this is the first call from Albuquerque.  For me, Albuquerque is famous for two things.  1. Bugs Bunny should have made a left turn at Albuquerque.  2. The Sprinfield Isotopes almost moved to Albuquerque.  Yeah, they are both cartoon references...which kinda tells you what kind of a person I am.  So with that, fuck you!

5 December 2016
  850-513-3524  Tallahassee, FL - Believe it or not, this is the first call from Tallahassee.  I would have sworn that there have been some calls before.  There was a time then I was constantly receiving calls from Florida.  At least now, we can chick Tallahassee off the list.  Fuck you!

 10 December 2016
  323-336-6017  Los Angeles, CA - Well hello, robo-telemarketer...and a good Saturday morning to you, too.  No, not in the morning and not on a Saturday.  Fuck you!

  847-24 - Usually, we do not know who is texting from these numbers.  But, with this one, we do. Remember that 650-727-1364 number from San Mateo?  You know, fucking Door Dash and that cunt,  Lori. Well, I blocked that number, so they found another way to harass me by using this 874-24 bullshit.

650-727-1364 mirror
While I am no expert on telemarketers, I am a frequent victim (as we all are) and this is straight up telemarketing.   Fuck you!

20 December 2016
  310-849-8375  United States -  If you do a search for this number, it comes up as a legit number.  But, since the location is "United States", this is a telemarketers.  While it possible that this was a call to a wrong number, the odds are, based on the caller location, that this was a routed call from a telemarketer.  They have been routing calls through 'real' numbers for years.  Fuck you!