the gadgets

Technology, tools. Stuff that goes whir, beep, bang, or chk.


bently portable tv

  Found at Goodwill. Tube works and image is fine, but would need an RF modulator to test if the audio is good. 9 D cell batteries go into the back of this thing, so I found a DC adapter brick on eBay. It wasn't the right one, had the wrong plug and polarity, but I wired it and 'modified' the connector so it works. It does pick up UHF signal and displays a good image.

summer baby monitor and camera

  Found the monitor at Goodwill, didn't know what it was initially. After buying it and looking up what it is, I looked on eBay for a camera, and found one that works with it. The camera came with a power adapter, the monitor did not, BUT the cable I rigged for the Bently Portable works on it as well. Lucky me that I didn't blow a fuse in it trying that. Both work, though I think the microphone on the camera is broken. Both have switches for different channels, and the Bently Portable picks the camera signal on all 3 channels; A is most of the range below 14 on UHF but it's quite blurry, B is the same range but a lot better quality, and C is a narrow range at the cusp of 14 which is finnicky but can get a good picture. The camera sends IR video and the LEDs flanking the camera are IR emitters, so it's quite an interesting effect. The feed barely changes at all if the lights get turned off.

amtel portable tv

  Found at Goodwill WITH THE ADAPTER WALL WART. Works great other than the tuning knob doing this weird ratcheting thing when I dial past the top of the range, also the tuning indicator not working. Has composite in on the back, no need for RF modulator funny business. At the same time as I found this, there was a 13" Magnavox CRT with wood grain on the sides and an audio stack in a dedicated rolling cabinet. I would have bought both if I had the space for them...

pocket calipers

  I saw this at the hardware store and I thought it was both funny and admirable to try and make a precision instrument this cheap and small. It's made only of stamped metal parts and has a bit of play, but I'm sure it works down to a 32nd. I didn't get it at the time but my brother must have picked up on my enthusiasm for it, because he got it for me for Christmas!

old hickory knife

  I found this in an abandoned house. Despite how it looks, the edge is still pretty good. The handle says "OLD HICKORY", and I assume that's an old brand of knives.

scissors with geometric handle

  I asked if I could have it when we were cleaning my grandmother's stuff. A really nice looking pair of scissors. Still nice and sharp.