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Sunday, May 26, 2013

TWSBI Diamond Vac700 nib swap

I read somewhere that a Pelikan M800 nib fits a TWSBI Diamond Vac700. I like vacuum filler pens; I do own two Pilot Custom 823s. I like Pelikan M800 as well; I own 3 of them. I thought it would be neat if I can have both in a pen so I gave a go for creating a chimaera. I bought a TWSBI Vac700 for 90 bucks online and a Pelikan M800 M nib for about AUD160 online. I knocked out the nibs from both the Pelikan nib assembly as well as the Vac700. I don't own a knockout block so I just hooked the assembly ring of the Pelikan nib unit/TWSBI nib unit on the edge of my desk then gently but firmly tapped using a Victorinox knife (with the knife folded)... For the TWSBI unit I used a sharpened yakitori bamboo stick to knock out the feeder. I did have a bin underneath to catch the nib just in case it came off too suddenly though this was not needed in the end.

Knocked out Pelikan and TWSBI nibs
I applied a coat of nail polish on the top surface of the butt end of the Pelikan nib; supposedly a Pelikan gold nib is a little thinner than the steel TWSBI nib (I read somewhere online but I cannot remember where) and a coat of the nail polish compensates for it. I'm not sure if that was even needed as the fit was very snag, and there was no problem in the ink flow on the chimeric pen; it writes on a wetter side though. 
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Saturday, May 25, 2013

Aavara TS743 triple monitor stand mod

I bought a Dell U3011 to bring the monitor count to 3. The U3011 in the landscape mode while the other two Dell 24" monitors on the sides in portrait mode. And hence I needed to get a new monitor stand (as I was using a dual monitor stand at this point). I decided to stick with the Aavara brand; I have been using their dual monitor stand for some time. I got the TS743 triple monitor stand. I got this delivered from Officeworks; just placed the order online and a few days later it landed on my doorstep. 

I read somewhere that the notches on the side monitor arms restrict the (full range) movement of these arms. I also read that just by filing them away, they will move to all positions. So, I gave a go at it.

Before filing the notches away

After the notches were filed away
The notches were very easy to file off; they were very soft and I managed to file them off by using a hand tool. After the notches were filed off, the arms were attached to the stand and monitors mounted. The only problem was I was trying to make this monitor stand perform beyond the spec; the stand cannot support a 30" monitor because of the weight restriction. It sags under the weight of the 30" monitor. I am using the two 24" monitors on both sides of the central monitor to hold it up in the place. Not an ideal set up but for the price I compromise. For now. 

UPDATE: I got rid of this monitor stand and replaced it with Ergotron products. I got an Ergotron LX dual side-by-side arm and an LX desk mount with a tall pole. I should've invested in these to begin with...

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Hinazushi (Ginza, Tokyo)

Caught up with a friend of mine that stretches back ~10 years in Tokyo. When we were in the US, he was often raving about this joint Hinazushi in Tokyo. Now that we were both in the city, I suggested we go there to see if his words were true. And just as he raved about it, it did not disappoint.

It costs about AUD50 and it is an all you can eat joint (for 90 minutes). You actually place the order on a piece of paper to indicate what you want and how many. You are restricted to 20 sushi per order; understandable in order to avoid possible wastage. We managed to polish 6 full plates; 120 pieces of sushi between two of us. Not a bad effort for two (almost) middle aged men. The quality of sushi was something you cannot get at this price in Australia. Was well worth the visit.

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Parlamento (North Terrace, Adelaide)

My parents had to pay a visit to their consulate for some paperwork on this Saturday. I tagged along to drop by at work to get something done. Later on, we met up in the city for a lunch. My mother chose this Parlamento joint on North Tce. I have been here twice before; 24 years ago when I came down here for attending some prelim for the uni entrance (by myself, alone). It was located on the ground floor of a Travelodge back then, and I stayed there. Being a 16 years old fresh out of country, not knowing much about Adelaide, I just stuck by this joint for dinner. It was alright for what it was back then. I was keen to try this place out not only for the nostalgic value but also by the fact that it is always full during lunch time whenever I come by trying to get a table for myself on my regular Thursday lunch session. We ordered for a main each with a couple of side dishes plus dessert.

Spaghetti Marinara
It was very good; a large serving with plenty of seafood. I was glad to see it was not like in the US where "Marinara" is plain tomato based pasta sauce (and nothing else). The picture doesn't show half the crab buried underneath all other bits of pasta. Crab was not very fresh (probably expecting a little too much) but was enough to add the flavour to the dish. I had a little problem eating crab probably because I'm not used to it. I had to pry open the shell with my hands and it made a LOT of mess (splashing sauce and what not). Very stylish wet towel (in its own small dish) was provided but it was not quite enough to clean my hands after the food. 

Semifreddo allo zabaglione
It was very good. The sweet taste did not linger sickly after each spoonful which I liked.

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