House Water Softeners

tap turned onwater softener system

I was on a farm last week attending a conference. It was an out of town venue with great facilities. Delegates were ferried on smart coaches from the hotel and the journey took about 12 minutes. So not too far.

I attend a lot of conferences as I work in sanitation and I get to see a lot of venues and hotels.

One of the things that impressed me with this hotel was their water system. It pumped water to each room, like any hotel but what stood out and something they publicized was that the water they delivered to each room was soft.

basin and central tapsoft water system

I’ve come across devices that convert hard water into soft water but more in a domestic setting, as you can see on the here This was the first time I’ve come across this in a hotel.
And sure enough the water felt different. I decided to take a bath after a long day at the conference and you instantly notice how pleasent the water is it just feels nice to be in. The towels are nice and soft too and stay that way (I sppke to the hotel manager, who told me so)



drops of waterhome water softener

I spoke with Ken, the hotel manger, at length and he showed me the water softening system. Which is just a bigger than the versions that are installed in a domestic setting.

My suitcase was also getting quite tatty. So I had to bite the bullet and replace it. That old suitcase is like an old friend, we’ve seen a lot of places together.

I eventually bought a 3 piece luggage set from 3 piece luggage sets who had a good selection. What I like is the fact that I get three suitcases. I only use the third case on the return leg of my journey and put all the soiled clothes into it, ready for washing when I get home.

water hardness – the science

how does water become hard

the effects of hard water

testing for hard water

best 8 person tent available today

Large TentBargain 8 Person Tent

There’s never been a better time to buy a tent for eight people. By buying in the fall, from places like You’ll get a great out of season tent for rock bottom prices and there’s some good bargains to be had.

Why a big tent makes sense

So what if I only have a small party or a small family. Well families grow and a larger and parties can increase in size without you having to change your tent to the next size up.

Also just like a house, having more room than you need is never a bad thing. And of course, just like a house, it fills up.

Bigger tents means that you can stand up in the middle sections and a tent of that size can be divided into rooms. A useful feature that allows some privacy in the great outdoors.

An eight person tent will also allow you to store your belongings without them getting in the way and having to step over things lying over the floor.

tent and camping knifeThings to look for in a tent

Try to get a tent with a covered porch. A porch is great to have as it acts as a barrier to the outside. Your party can divest themselves of any wet and soiled clothing or footwear. You can seal the porch from the main tent allowing them to dry out.

Inside tent looking outGet familiar with any new tent

Before you take your camping vacation you should carry out a dry run first. Erect the tent and then take it down. Do this several times and you’ll become comfortable with all the features and the order in which things should be carried out.

There’s nothing worse than arriving at a camping site and struggling to put a tent up. Embarrassing as other, experienced campers look on. And sometimes it’s raining or the sun’s going down. Which makes putting up a tent, in record time, a herculean task for novice campers.

How to Pitch a tunnel tent

Just remember that packing a tent away can sometimes be more challenging than putting it up. Most tents will have a bag that the tent fits neatly into but it has to be folded in a certain way.

How pack away your tent

Follow these simple steps and a camping vacation will be great and very relaxing holiday.

Temperature Kettle for Tea Making

Hanging Tea BagsTea Drinkers

If, like me, you like tea? Then you should invest in one of these These are electric kettle with temperature control and I’ll tell you why they’re an absolute must, if you like the perfect cup of tea.

What they do is to allow to to set the temperature that the water in the kettle will reach. Then they stop. You use some of the water to heat the vessel (which is a cup or a pot). Then you add your tea leaves or tea bag and pour the water, now at the perfect temperature, into the vessel.

Now these kettles have an additional feature, they will keep the water at the temperature you set, for a few minutes. 10 to 30 minutes, depending on the model. So you can warm the pot without worrying about the water in the kettle losing precious heat.

By not boiling water, every time you want a hot drink, you’ll save money too. Not boiling water and not going those last few degrees, adds up over the year on your energy bill. So that’s a cost saving

Tea Brewing in a CupBetter Flavor

But the main benefit is the tea and you’ll notice the difference in the taste. There’s so much more flavor and delicate aromas when you don’t add boiling water.

Green teas, white teas, black teas, all have medicinal properties and health benefits. But you won’t get any any these when you use boiling water. The water needs just to be hot enough to extract the flavors from the tea leaves. Boiling water destroys those delicate compounds in the tea and render it as just a hot liquid.

There is a plethora of herbal teas and fruit teas and these also benefit from hot rather than boiling water. The great thing with these variable temperature kettles is that you can experiment, try different temperatures and find out which works best for you.

It’s not just tea, coffee, the instant kind, benefits by using very hot water but not boiling water.

perfect cup of tea

Best Light Tent for Still Life

Light Tents for Photographers

light tent - booksA lot of my photography involves still life. I register a lot of my images with online galleries and get commissions when the images are used. So my photography is both a hobby and s source of income.

I recently invested in s good quality light tent from best selling light tent today I use my own lighting but I needed something bigger than the light bird l box I currently had which was an 18 inch cube.

Big is Beautiful

light tent - fruitI went for a 26 inch cube with white translucent sides. The size is a bit awkward to move around but I have mine permanently mounted in my make shift studio. Because it’s big I use between three or four miniature spots depending on the size of the object I’m shooting and the amount off light I need.

People, I know, often ask why use a light tent? Why go to so much trouble? My answer is that I’m in control of the final image. This is important when you’re selling your images and you’ve got competition, your images needed to be top quality.

But it also helps if you’re selling something on eBay. Remember people buy with their eyes. And an image is worth a thousand words – right?

The Main Benefits

light tent - blossomThe main benefit for using a light tent are two fold. The first is you control the lighting. Most of the time we want an even lighting that’s soft and even.

The second reason is to control reflections especially on high gloss surfaces. These surfaces pick up all sorts of reflections and most of the time they work against you. A light tent removes those reflections giving a nice true image.

If your serious about the images you take even if you use a cell phone for your images, then I recommend a light tent because your images well look so good.

Images with a light tent 10 out of 10. Images without a light tent 5 out of ten (if you’re lucky).

Top Robot Vacuum Cleaners Today

vacuum cleaner head

The Future

We’ve seen the future of vacuum cleaning and it’s automatic. Robot vacuum cleaners are the next big thing. If they can create driverless cars then robot vacs should be easy, right?

Well it turns out to be a tricky problem full of design constraints. For example you want a vacuum cleaner that can suck up as much dust and dirt as possible. Bigger units require more power which means bigger, bulkier batteries. Which means a bigger unit which is just not as versatile at getting around. So a lot of trade offs have to be made at the design stage.

But the good news is that technology doesn’t stand still and both miniaturization and artificial intelligence get better at an exponential rate.

Must Have Features

Let’s start with what we want from an automatic vacuuming device.

  1. Well it has to clean efficiently and clean the whole surface.
  2. It must not get stuck or confused
  3. It must vacuum when we’re not around
  4. It should know when it’s power is low and find it’s charging station.

old vacuum upright cleaner

The Verdict

I’m pleased to report that today’s models meet all the above criteria. The only issue is the price. The better models, the ones that do the above tend to be the more expensive. But that’s the same with most products, better quality normally means higher price.

You can see some of the better models here top robot vacuum cleaner

If you decide to invest you have to help the device to help you. By that we mean keep the area to be vacuumed clear of obstacles. The clearer the area the better the results.

You have to leave doors open so that the robot vacuum cleaner can visit every room. Changes in level, hard floor to rug, present no problem for today’s robots but do be wary of any turned up corners on a rug as these can pose a challenge.

Welcome to My Gadgets Site

The world of technology moves really fast. Each generation sees an ever increasing rate of change, which is quite relentless. It’s quite frightening for some people, but not for me I love it and can’t wait for the next iteration of technology – bring it on.

The previous generation saw the age of the color television, the Walkman. We’re in the age of the smart phone. Tomorrow is the age of the driverless car – it’s coming.

I think driverless cars are just the beginning, driverless trucks will follow as well driverless taxis. That will be followed by driverless trains and driverless drone aero planes. Sounds frightening and it is a bit, but all very exciting at the same time. And I just know it’ll be much better, much safer to place to be.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me say hi to you and I hope you find what I post here interesting enough to come back to. I’ll be adding more stuff like this and hopefully it gets a reaction.

See you soon.

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