Instagram – Best of 2021

It has become routine – each year many Instagram users create a mosaic of their Top, or Best (i.e. Most ‘Liked’) images.

Ok – I followed that bandwagon and did it too. I really don’t cafe about the total number of likes for each images or how many followers I gained in 2021.

For me – it is more the curiosity of which images were selected. Click on the image to enlarge it.

Top Row (left to right)

“Staycation” in Ivvavik National Park. Beautiful landscape, great Parks Canada staff, wildlife (dall sheep, wolf – no bears ūüôā (June 30, 2021).

2) Inaugural use of the 23zero RTT on the FJ80. October 30, first night of really cold – snow and small lakes were frozen the next morning. Totally comfortable in the 23Zero Walkabout RTT. Next trip might install the winter liner and use the Propex heater. (Oct 30, 2021).

After a long day in my office – (read cubicle land), I grabbed beer and headed to my outdoor office. Caught the sunset too. And – yes, a horribly over processed photo. Unfortunately it does a great job showing all the dents and wrinkles on my old truck (and my face too). Such is life, an accumulation of dents and wrinkles, each with an interesting story.(March 16, 2021).

Middle Row (left to right)

-43C (-45F) sunrise. I probably won’t be spinning my wheels today – no plans to start a car or biking. Instead – hanging out near the woodstove with a glass or two of a fine drink and a good book. (Feb 6, 2021).

Same truck (2017 & 2021). 1974 Toyota FJ55 Landcruiser. Still running strong – except for the paint:-). Better patina some say. Thanks to @the_cruiser_cult for picture. (Nov 14, 2021).

Enjoying the-36 Celcius sunset on the ice road. (Jan 24, 2021).

 

Bottom Row (left to right)

Winter camping with a “23 Zero” rooftop tent at 23 below Zero (Celsius). Heated with a Propex HS2800 heater built into a recycled metal box. Brown box supports exhaust pipes. Version 2 will use a simple bench instead of the brown box. Set up takes less than 10 minutes.(Jan 9, 2021).

Thanks to Aaron for taking me off roading in the new to me 1973 FJ55 ‘Iron Pig’ and with the new to him (formerly mine) 1999 4runner that he has since added 1980’s style stripes. Photo credit- Aaron Perrott. (Aug 16, 2021).

This got delivered today. For those that don’t know what it is – 1981 BJ60 Toyota Landcruiser. Well – sort of. The back end was cut off and converted into this. It has a few rusty parts, a few broken parts. It was a daily driver. Yes, this 40 year old truck needs a bit of TLC. It will probably never go faster than 70 km/hr (45 mph), it won’t win any drag races, and it certainly won’t win any awards for comforts. It is what it is.
I was still in elementary school when this truck hit the road, and my kids are nearly finished high school. That’s cool.
Should I have bought a 2021 truck loaded with all the gadgets and gizmos ?.
(May 5, 2021).

 

Clearly, viewers ‘Like’ Toyota trucks; 3rd generation 4runners (x2), landcruisers (x5), including 1973 Fj55, 1982 chopped BJ60, 1991 FJ80.

Summer (x4), Winter (x4), Fall (x1)

People x1 (me)

The last one, People x1 (me) resonates. No images of other people, no images of canoe trips, no images dinner parties, or other social events. The sad truth is that there were very, very few social events during 2021. Blame it on the Covoid19 pandemic Has everyone become a social recluse ?. Does everyone keep to themselves ?. Have we become a population of introverts ?

Or – is there something else ?

As I write this, a friend is a no-show for a coffee catch up.  Another friend, we were going to get together while walking their dog – two days ago. A couple of reminders along the way – and nothing. I could include a couple more examples – It it makes you wonder – is it Covoid and a fear of getting sick from someone else ?, or people don’t know how to socialize,or is there something else ?.  Maybe that helps to put vehicle obsession into perspective – vehicles break but don’t bail.

First day of winter vacation

First day of winter vacation. It sucks a bit when the weather is almost as cold as I am old. If only I was 12 !.
A round of Dutch shuffleboard and a round of beer to bring in the New Year.

 

One week of vacation. Day 1 – it is -52C with windchill. My nose and cheek is still recovering from frostnip (low grade frostbite), and the whole week the temperature is predicted to by ‘extreme cold’. Drat – no working on trucks,skiing or fatbiking. I can’t take the cold like i used to.  Must be age ?.  School kids still only wear running shows, no toques (don’t want to mess their hair), and no winter pants !.

Today – some boredom. What to do all week ?.  Spent more hours surfing the internet, some useful research and plenty of mindless scrolling.  At least tonight dug out the camera and some studio lights, use me as the model :>

Used a now very ancient Nikon D700, Nikon 85mm lens and polarizer, two Paul C. Buff Einstein studio lights; behind the camera; circular reflector and 30% grid, and rear light has a 1×6 modifier with a grid. Hardest part was getting the focus – self timer, pose, click – check and adjust focus and repeat….

 

 

 

 

Project” I should probably get a girlfriend”

Have you ever purchased a ‘Used’ item and wondered about its history ?

  • Who had it ?
  • How did they use it ?
  • Why did they get rid of it ?

If you buy a used vehicle – you can ask the owner about the vehicles history, and / or purchase the vehicle history report (e.g. CarFax) that includes accident and repair notes. 

The title of this post “Project” I should probably get a girlfriend” and the text below were written by the previous owner of a vehicle I now own. The previous owner “crawlin cruiser” had purchased the 1973 FJ55 Toyota Landcruiser and described the restoration and rebuild on the ih8mud forum (https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/project-i-should-probably-get-a-girlfriend.401231/) (July 23, 2010 – Sept 26,2018).

I have copied and condensed the text from the link above, and in bold some unique sections.

 

Project” I should probably get a girlfriend”          

 

Jul 22, 2010                                                        

I already have an fj40 buggy, a nice hj61 as a dd, my dodge cummins tow rig and now this……….

 

1973 FJ55

Purchased from previous owner in Keremeos, B.C.

 

fj55 June 09 001.jpg

fj55 June 09 003.jpg

Those are the pics from last summer when I picked it up.

 

It has sat in my yard till yesterday when I started work

july 10 090.jpg

Plans are

soa with lockers

ps(saginaw)

35s

might use my sm420 out of my buggy when I install my stak

 

and yes those ARE fj55 bushings

july 10 089.jpg       

july 10 087.jpg   july 10 088.jpg

For the steering I was just going with what I have and what i know. personally I think 60 series boxes suck the big one anyways. never used a scout though?

thnaks, the po did the turn signals. guess it works? this truck is all go no show good from far far from good. paint is done,

I actually bought a set of soa axles about two months ago dirt cheap. rear even has a locker . cut the old ones out, bolt the new ones in. done. I do need to add a set of ford towers though  

 

Aug 10, 2010

Paint finished and it drives.

Aug 10 030.jpg           

There are still rust issues in the rockers, rear fender lips and rear quarters but overall for what i have into it(which isnt very much) im a happy guy.

Aug 10.jpg

Any pics of the headliner. This looks interesting to me.        

i don’t think its stock. It looks good though

  Aug 10 039.jpg                     

Curtains !!                                                                            

Weird… What the heck is that headliner made of? Are those indentions where it screws in?

curtains= shagin wagin!

Wow. I’m surprised I didn’t think of that. I’m actually kind of bummed I didn’t think of that….

Sign you are getting old…

Curtains was one of my first up grades when I got my cruiser … I took them out! Of course mine didn’t look that good. They were 1970’s bandana red looking weirdness.

I have no idea how its held up. but its soft foam with the liner over top. if I flip the truck over it would be a great place to sleep.

 

Dec 25, 2010

Well guys,

This project has taken a turn for the worst

Project” i should probably get a girlfriend” turned into “wholy fxxx, I landed a smoken hot redhead”

 

Lets just say progress has been slow.  I have stared on the rust repair, and ps.

Dec 26, 2010

Teaser of this weeks project

  fj55.JPG         

 Grinding, cutting, torching,welding…….. repeat x100

Jan 28, 2011

New rocker, floor, body mount           

   Jan 11 075.jpg        

  Jan 11 071.jpg         

  Jan 11 072.jpg                     

Tech question, what is the relation of a pitman arms lenth to its “home” steering box? I got a scout box as Jon sugested, but the arm is about 10″ !! i have shorted steering arms for saginaw boxes… what will this do to the steering raito?

I had no idea that you were this cool. Where did you find the 55?        

I’m soo cool….. I can have a project in every section (IH8MUD forums)

 

Jul 17, 2011

Long time no update. Finished off all the little stuff. took the swiss cheese passenger fender and gave it new steel.

Shotty fender repair

555.JPG                       

    556.JPG      

Jul 17, 2011

Finished product?.  I doubt it

558.JPG           

Jul 23, 2011

Few more little additions. I got the roof rack on, stereo installed and even got the tires ballanced 

 

Aug 1, 2011

Shot of the truck at the lake with the rack

image-316124322.jpg          

Jan 19, 2016

Well guys…. Time to dig this pig out of its ice sarcophagus and do some fixin. A bit of cosmetic, got the brass gear for the window. And a few small mechanical mods she will be as good as new!

image.jpg                      

Has it been sitting there since 2011?

No not at all. Only about a year. Only reason I parked it is because the clutch is gone. So instead of a clutch job it’s getting an sm420 with an EBI adapter kit

                                  

Clutch,trans,transfer. Front shocks. New hood Window gear

And probably a bunch of other crap while its in the shop haha.

Jan 23, 2016

image.jpg It has begun….

Jan 24, 2016 

GUESS GIRL FRIEND THING DIDNT WORK        

Sure did, getting married this summer. And she let me build this

image.jpg

Jan 27, 2016                               

A couple wheeling pics to keep you interested while I wait for parts         

image.jpg

                       

image.jpg

image.jpg

Jan 28, 2016

So after pulling the 4spd and transfer I found out my truck actually has an f engine. Now I know why it’s so slow haha. Has anyone put the 10 spline chev disc in the f clutch?? I’ve only done it on 2f components. Just wondering differance and whatnot.

 

Jan 31, 2016                                                          

Well The chev disc fits in the f flywheel but I don’t know how I feel about the old Style pressure plate. I think I’m just gonna tear into another parts truck and grab the 2fbits needed               

 

Feb 19, 2016

Hey guys I’m still having clutch problems. I’ve got ll my 2f bits on the f engine but I have 2 different throw out bearing hubs. One has a 1 3/4 for the bearing and one is 2″. Both came off 4 spds. Does it matter what one I use??

 

Feb 19, 2016

This part of the clutch fork assembly should determine which bearing.

003.JPG

Sep 25, 2016       

Not too much to report.. Sm420 swap worked out great. Drives good. Replaced the drivers door. But back in he shop right now for more body work. Just out for a Little rip at the river behind the farm!

                       

image.jpg

I’m also on the look out for a good drivers fender and affront rad support. Mine is beyond fixing

                       

 

             

 

Time for Something Completely Different

Starting January 10th, 2022 – A New Career.  It is career number …Navy, Geologist, Mineral Development Advisor, Remote Sensing Analyst and and soon – lands Specialist.

As I write this – Three days to go. It has been a run of 20 years. Bitter sweet to be leaving, especially after the release of the Long Term Change Detection (LTCD) dataset, development of the LTCD User Guide and doing a CBC radio interview. Leaving on a good note, and it is time to move on. The commute will be to the other side of the building, new colleagues, and a completely new job.
Thinking back of the projects I have worked on since 2002. A ton of writing computer code and data processing, creating seamless mosaics of topographic data for all of NWT, forest fire burn severity, identifying and counting caribou and bison using satellite images, flood map predictive models, PM for collection of air photos over proposed Mackenzie Gas project and Mackenzie Delta, mapping coastal erosion at Cape Bathurst (360m in 38 years), and the highlight – the LTCD project for developing scripts to process 40 years of satellite data using Google Earth Engine.
Over the years technology and computer systems evolved from needing high end desktop computer, specialized remote sensing software and having to download satellite data (100’s of Gb per day) to cloud enabled computing – I can run the scripts and process satellite imagery using my phone !. My Thanks to the many colleagues, and my classmates at COGS (2000-2001). 

 

Mapping Coastal Erosion at Cape Bathurst, NWT.

Mapping coastal erosion – the Old way. Converting the raster (satellite picture into a line layer). 1972 coastline in red, satellite picture (blue outline) from 2010.

Schematic of the changes in the coastline at Cape Bathurst, years and coastline shown.

Coastal erosion shown in blue using the LTCD script. Takes 20 minutes to run – instead of 3 days of eyeball strain !.

Counting wildlife using a satellite image. Satellite is in orbit approx 800km above earth.

 

Wildfire Burn Severity mapping:

2014 Wildfires in NWT.

Wildfire Burn Severity analysis.

Mackenzie Gas Pipeline Airphoto Project:

Wrote specifications and contract managed for 1;30,000 scale airphotos covering Mackenzie gas Pipeline route (pipeline yet to be built) and Mackenzie Delta,and creating of 1 meter contours and digital elevation model (DEM).

1:30,000 scale airphoto tile.

Area covered by MVAP tiles, contours and DEM (extends down Mackenzie Valley).

 

Long Term Change Detection (LTCD):

Long Term Change Detection – User Guide.

LTCD User Guide. Description of colours for wildfires.

LTCD User Guide. Sample images of slope movement.

 

Read more about the User Guide and ESRI ‘App’ of the Month, and CBC Weekender radio interview here:

https://www.geomatics.gov.nt.ca/en/newsroom/long-term-change-detection-wins-esri-canadas-app-month-december-2021

 

Sold: 1997 Toyota 4Runner

There goes another one…

Rare 5 speed Manual and E-locker 1997 Toyota 4Runner SR5.

 

Bought it in May 2020 – sight unseen in Calgary.  Because of Covoid, didn’t get to it until August 2020. By then, it had been picked up and moved to a new location outside of town. Did a few repairs and drove it back to Yellowknife. 

Definitely fun as heck to drive. Short shift 5 speed transmission, and straight piped (no muffler – straight pipe exhaust). Great sound from the engine. It also had a forward tilt, slightly nose down. Two inch lift and 17″ tires, and a crazy blinking light pole at the rear.  Like any used vehicle, it had its share of surprises.  In retrospect I should have known. It had a rebuilt engine installed.  Last winter i had a heck of a time starting it. It had an electric battery blanket and cord for the engine block heater.  Cord….I assumed it was plugged in. But i discovered a week later that the cord wasn’t actually plugged in – it was left over from the previous engine !. New engine didn’t have a block heater.!.

 

The power windows didn’t work, and still don’t. Checked the fuses, and same circuit as the sunroof – and that works !. Power locks work, except from drivers door.  I opened up the side console and checked the controller. It was dirty, worn out and sooty. Cleaned it, and figured it was the problem – Not !. Broken wire somewhere?.

I replaced the brakes. All new parts; pads, rotors, calipers and drums, and the entire parking brake system (removed by previous owner) – Wow. That was a bit of work, and so much better !.

Also did a bunch of smaller jobs; sway bar (removed by previous owner), end links, replaced all the fluids, and fluid film on rusty bits. The truck came with a cargo rack, that was replaced with a DIY roof rack for canoes and roof top tent.   Never got around to doing body work – seemed as though every panel had a big dent.

The ARB bumper and 12,000 lb winch for a bit of use moving other vehicles around the yard – but not real use off road.

Of the original 5!!  4Runners in my fleet, this was number 4 (4-4). One remaining ;>

 

 

For sale: Toyota land cruiser landcruiser diesel manual BJ42

1980 BJ42 Toyota landcruiser.

Diesel (3b engine), 4 speed, two speed transfer case (2H, 4H, 4L). 10% gear reduced transfer case to compensate for the large tires. Drives and runs well. Rear body needs work. missing rear window on passenger side. Winch. Front turn light removed and is included. $5800 – OBO. Clear Title. Not at location shown in photos. **** Don’t ask if still Available. If post is up – it is available.

 
 
Yellowknife
 

For Sale: 1974 FJ55 Toyota Landcruiser

Spring over suspension, Detroit locker in rear differential, 4.11 gears.
Scout power steering, On 35‚ÄĚ BFG tires

Rusty at drivers quarter panel, small holes in drivers floor and cargo area.
Interior panels removed for inspection (included). Light bezels included.

Pressure washed, paint stripped. Lots of layers of paint.
Oldest paint – White top, Orange lower.

More pictures upon request.

Includes: spare Toyota 2F engine, drivers door, drivers side passenger door, rear hatch, power window motor, radiator, engine head and floor mats.

Located in Yellowknife, Title in my name.

 

23ZERO Tent (Below Zero) Rooftop tent

23ZERO tents are designed in Australia, and the name derived from the geographic coordinates of Alice Springs, Australia (23.6980¬į S, 133.8807¬į E).

Our name 23ZERO is derived from part of the co-ordinates of one the toughest places on the planet and the most central place in Australia, Alice Springs. Alice Springs is a small place surrounded on all sides by an expanse that truly helps you to remember how small we are in a huge universe.

Some folks would say that Yellowknife, where I live is also one of the toughest places to live and also pretty close to the central place in Canada. Officially, Baker Lake, (64.3176¬į N, 96.0220¬į W) Nunavut is termed the ‚ÄúGeographical centre of Canada‚ÄĚ. Yellowknife (62.4540¬į N, 114.3718¬į W) is approximately 934km the west of baker Lake. Coordinates aside, Yellowknife is still a tough place to live, and literally (seasonally) at the end of the road. During the winter the Tibbitt to Contwoyto Winter Road extends approximately 400 to 600km beyond the all season road (highway 4) that ends at 65 km east of Yellowknife.  Average temperatures in Yellowknife vary from +25C to -30C and with windchill can plunge to -45C. 

Below -30C it is just downright ….(swear word) Cold!.  I don’t even think about using a tent at those temperatures. My comfortable limit is close to -23 (Below) Zero.

I’ve got a winter liner for the 23ZERO rooftop tent and built a propane heater system using a Propex HS2800 heater, a car battery, 20lb propane can, ducting and a table (brown box in picture). If looks a bit jury rigged – it is !. This is the prototype that we tested last year. Version 2 is on a metal step ladder to support the venting pipes from the heater and it takes about 10 minutes to set up.

As a bonus, not only is the tent warm, the ducting can also be use to warm up the truck !.

If you have any questions about the set up – drop me a comment.

My “Covid Illness” – Part One

Farewell to the 1999 4runner. It was called 4-2. 4-1 (sold) was its earlier sibling, followed by 4-3 (sold). 4-4 (1997), and 4-5 (1999) are still in the family. Not crazy original names!. Good thing I didn’t name my kids. Lol.

With 5 Toyota 4runners (I miss read the memo about 4 runners…Ha Ha), it was difficult to keep track of which one was which, and to refer to them.  I am not into giving my vehicles people names. My dad had a couple of Volvos. He was always fixing something, cursing and sometimes calling them “Swedish Shit”.  That said, they were good cars, and they (and the occupants) survived car accidents in which my family would probably not survived.

I digressed…

Prior to Covid, I had only one car – a 2000 Toyota 4runner. It was Jade Green, Manual and ‘stock’. I spent a ton of money on maintenance and repairs – in retrospect many things i could have done my self. When Covid really hit the fan in my town – another Jade Green 4runner was advertised.  Asking price was $1000. Body was in near pristine condition – but it blew blue smoke.  Most likely a Head gasket failure – a major and costly repair.  A gamble – Could I fix it ?, or simply a truck to practice mechanics, or simply for parts. My daughter and did a few repairs – value cover gaskets, and compression test. A vehicle to spend time with my daughter whom had expressed an interest in mechanics.

“Covid Illness”…It starts !

While searching for parts, I came across another 4runner. The Covid illness had started, but I didn’t notice.  Bought another 1999 Toyota 4Runner – Silver, Manual, ARB front bumper.  Great Truck, needed a few repairs and had a bit of body rust. This one got the name of 4-3.

“Covid Illness”…It continues !

And then, bought another 4Runner !. 1997, Silver, Manual, ARB bumper with winch, leather interior, rebuilt engine, short shift transmission, elocker, and straight piped.  Driving it – feels like a sports car, with the throaty roar, and short shifting, and the lack of rear anti-sway bar !.  Obviously this truck got the name of 4-4.

“Covid Illness”…It goes on and on !

4-5. Yes – My fifth 4runner !. 1999, Silver, Manual, rebuild front and rear suspension, rusty rocker panels and quarter panels, and front which and stinger type front bumper.   It was filthy !!. Mud all over the dash, and dog hair everywhere.

Yes – 5 Toyota 4Runners in my yard. !!

 

4-1 (manual) and 4-2 (automatic) were stock.  Drove more like a station wagon.

4-1 beside its bigger brother

 

4-2

Usual state of 4-2

4-2 on its way top new owner. Ironically, towed away with another 4runner !.

 

4-3 with stiff shocks felt like a heavy truck, and 4-4 feels like a sports car. 4-5 has been neglected – though feels more like 4-3, distinctly truck like.

4-3 on Marian Lake ice road (NWT).

 

4-4 ‘Road Runner’

4-5

Delivery day (4-5)

 

Since then, 4-1, 4-2, 4-3 have been sold, and 4-4 will be soon.

Does a person really need 5 4Runners ??

Without a doubt – No.  But sure was fun having them.  Basically the same vehicle, though each one is distinct, and its own feel when driving.

Soon, down to only 4-5.

But the illness continues. Why do I call this My “Covid Illness” – Check a previous post. In brief, vehicle maintenance, repair, buying and selling is a new thing for me, and started with the Covid shutdown. It is a mental distraction during the times that we are not able to socialize.

..The Symptoms are now a collection of Toyota Landcruisers – But that is  another post.

“Study Hard – Or you will be a Mechanic”

In the early 1980’s I was a young kid in high school. I certainly wasn’t at the top of the class, and the kids with lower grades were typically directed by school administration to auto mechanics.  My Dad, as most parents do, was hoping to motivate me to work harder, get higher grades and pursue a career path other than auto mechanics.

He was geophysicist working at the Geological Survey of Canada, and a Adjunct Professor at the Ecole polytechnique in Montreal. My Dad could also fix cars – sort of.  We had several old beaters, a couple of which were destined for the scrap heap by the time we were done with them.  For him – fixing a car was more out of necessity than pleasure. One car had a massive hole in floor at the back seat. My brother and i would sharpen sticks on the pavement while my Dad dove us to school.

My brother is also pretty smart, so there was no need for Dad to give him a “pep talk”. But me – well, I sometimes needed a bit of extra motivation.  I remember my Dad saying “Study Hard – Or you will be a Mechanic” .  Not sure if that particularly motivated me, though i did graduate high school, and went on to get a Bachelors degree and Masters degree. 

And now now i am closer to the tail end of my career, and also a parent trying to motivate my own kids, i find myself more and more drawn to auto mechanics.  It is mostly for pleasure as long as I am able to keep at least one of the fleet in operating condition. Safety in numbers doesn’t always go in my favour…

Most interesting, the vehicles that I am most drawn to now were new back when i was a young kid in high school. !!  Yes – these vehicles are really…really old ;>.  Actually, one is nearly as old as I am, and that is more that half a century old.

 

Taking apart the Tacoma. What better way to learn how the pieces go together.

Taking apart one of my favourites – 1980’s vintage Toyota Land cruiser.

Obviously, I don’t say to my kids….”Study Hard – Or you will be a Mechanic”

My Daughter spinning the lug nuts putting on the winter tires.