Monday, September 14, 2009

Going Green: food digesture - Part 4

This is the forth and I hope final installment in relation to my experiences using a green cone in my home, the previous installments can be read here.

To sum things up I had to abandon all previous plans as the green cone just kept flooding and in the end during May 2009 I had to stop using it completely so I could re-install it.

So to reinstall it I first had to remove it and what an awful fun job that was, the basket at the end was full of sludge and smelled awful. Once this was taken out I then refilled the hole that the green cone was in and I made sure to have the greencone completely above ground,.

Now the green cone instructions say that a bucket of water should train away within a max of 30min, since the redesign its draining within seconds so all is good so far.

Here's the finished re-design in all its glory...lets hope this is the last time I do this :)

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Sunday, June 28, 2009

My New Photoblog

For those who aren't aware back in March I restarted as a photoblog website, please visit it in all its glory and feel free to leave comments :)

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Bord Gais start selling Electricity

So Bord Gais have starting selling Electricity in Ireland to compete against ESB and Airtricity, you can view details on

Bord Gais promise upto 14% off what ESB charge their customers and if we take Urban 24 Hour is breaks down as follows:

Take Urban 24 Hour Tariff
- Bord Gais = General Units kWh 16.38 (with DD option only)

- ESB = General units kWh 18.61

- Airtricity = General Units kWh 17.12 (DD option only)

Click on the company names for full tariff details from the company website, all prices include VAT at 13.5%.

So all in All Bord Gais is cheapest at present, I may be switching I'll see how things work out

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Switching to a Safety Razor: Pt. 3

After using my new safety razor for awhile I've found that the original badger brush I bought is pretty poor and also I could do with better shaving cream so I've bought a few items which include pre-shave gel, shaving cream, blades and a much better quality brush.

After two days of usage I have to say the brush was well worth it, it holds water much better then the previous cheap brush I bought as such it creates and hydrates the lather much quicker and better too.

For anyone currently looking at buying a shaving brush I can't stress enough that it is well worth investing in a good quality brush don't opt for a cheap budget brush.

I'd imagine this selection which I bought from should last me a long long time :)


I got a new Trek 7.1 FX

For those who know me you'll know that I used to cycle to work everyday before I moved house, in fact I used to average about 12-16knm a day which I sadly miss now that I have to drive to work. :(

Anyway back at the beginning of December I brought my Trek 7.1 FX in from the yard to give it a clean and service as I thought it was time I got back in the saddle, I started by taking off the wheels and when I attempted to remove the back wheel the frame came away with it.

At this stage I'm pretty pissed off as the frame is broken but I'm not too worried as the frame as a lifetime warranty so I get on to the bike shop where I bought it back in October 2006 and they agree to send it back to Trek, of course its December so I'm not worried about it be sorted out fast due to the Christmas rush.

Anyway earlier this week I gave the bike shop a call and much to my surprise and delight it turns out Trek decided they'd replace my old bike with a new one and better still the bike shop wouldn't charge me for building it.

Here it is in all its glory!!

All in all I'm very happy with both Trek and Altitude Bike shop in Waterford who did a brilliant job at customer service. :)

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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Three is not Broadband, its Midband!

Following on from the recent announcement that the Department of Communications has given the National Broadband Scheme to Three instead of Eircom its worth remembering that Three's "Mobile Broadband" is not actual Broadband despite what the government says. (This deal has now been signed!)

This doesn't just apply to Three it also applys to O2, Vodafone and Meteor who also tend to refer to their services as "Mobile Broadband" when infact they should be called something else.

So going off the back of a recently created Midband sub-forum on the Broadband forum on all these services would be better referred to as Midband.

What is Midband you may ask, well it is...
"Midband" is defined as Mostly On systems that are not billed by time and deliver on average better than the max of Dialup which is 2x B ch ISDN of 128k, but
:: on average less than 1Mbps (1)
:: more than 100ms Latency (2)
:: connection is not ensured (3).

Providers of "Midband" services include, Three, O2, Vodafone & Meteor as well as Satellite, Irish Broadband Ripwave and Clearwire.

Services provided by these providers are totally unsuitable for
- On-Line Gaming
- Video Conferencing
- VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol)

So why am I ranting about Three, well what annoys me is that it is called Broadband when it is clearly not the same thing as a 1MB ADSL or Cable line and can never provide the same quality of service to its users.

This isn't Three's fault this is purely down to the technology being used but my problem is the fact that Three, O2, Vodafone etc and the Department of Communications are lying to people by calling it Broadband!

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Thursday, January 22, 2009

Switching to a Safety Razor: Pt. 2

So I posted awhile back about switching from a Gillette Fusion to a Safety Razor namely a Merkur 570 Chrome "Progress", so after a week of use and some initial problems I have to say I'm very impressed with it.

At first I started off using the shaving soap I bought with the razor but this dried out my skin like crazy and didn't lather very well so I ended up cutting myself about 5-6 times which was fun, I've since switched back to my normal King Of Shaves shaving gel and all is well. Although I'm going to try some different brands as suggested on some websites.

The shave is far closer then my old Fusion (even when compared with the first shave with a new fusion blade), also it takes about the same amount of time to shave.

Overall I'm happy with the switch over :)

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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Its Tuesday 20th January 2009 in America!

I think this sums things up nicely!

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Sunday, January 11, 2009

Switching to a Safety Razor

So for years I've been using the standard Gillette razors such as Mach3 and more recently the Gillette Fusion, their fine and all but I still suffer from razor burn and skin irritation due to the way that Mach3's and Fusions work.

Basically these cassettes loaded razors use whats referred to as hysterisis, basically the razor pulls the hair out and hacks it off. This is fine and all but it also irritates the skin a fair bit. In addition if you lather up your skin properly your razor should not need to pull out your hair.

So yesterday I took the plunge and bought myself my first Safety Razor a Merkur 570 Chrome "Progress" from, initially its kinda expensive but when you compare that a single blade for a Gillette Fusion costs about 3.50e and a single blade for a Safety Razor costs 50e and does a better job its worth it.

There is however an important thing to remember, using a Safety Razor is more of "art" then using a normal bog standard razer it is worth watching videos by the Shave Tutor on youtube to get an idea of whats involved.

However if the media were to be believed you'd think that I'm stepping back in time to using a device that is inferior just because it doesn't come with a "shaving system" or some sort and cost a fortune to use. More and more people are getting pissed off with these "systems" and there is a growing numbers of people on the internet switching to safety razors due to the reasons outlined above.


Saturday, November 15, 2008

Going Green: food digesture - Part 3

The third update on my plan to reduce our household waste costs and to improve on the amount of material we recycle, so far the layout is as follows:
- Plastic covered box for cans & glass
- Two 80ltr bins for recyclable material (paper, plastic etc)
- One 90ltr bin to stockpile about 4-5 weeks of non-recycle material
- One greencone for food stuffs

So how it works is about once a month I need to do a run to empty the two 80ltr bins and about once every 4-5 weeks I need to empty the 90ltr non-recyle bin which doesn't tend to smell because all foodstuff that cause the smells goes into my greencone :)

Overall this costs me €6 to dispose of all my rubbish which is a good saving over the €25 monthly fee I'd have to pay to a waste pickup company.

So far so good and I'm impressed with how the system works so far, the initial outset for implementing my green waste plan were kinda high though:
- €145.00 for greencone
- €20 for 80ltr bin
- €20 for 90ltr bin
- €20 for plastic box
Total: €205

When compared to what I'd have to pay for a monthly pickup for the same material (12 x €25) €300, so after the first 12 months I'll really feel the savings :)

I hope I've helped to inspire others to try this as well.

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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Trail Kilkenny and Kilmacoiliver hill

IMG_4808pan, originally uploaded by TheCabaal.

I recently went on a walk on one of the Trail Kilkenny walks which goes up and around Kilmacoiliver Hill, Tullahought.

Took me about 70min or so and was pretty enjoyable with very nice views and even included a lovely 5,000 year old stone circle.

I'd have to recommend it to all, I was thinking some light painting shots on the stone circle could be interesting in future...although wouldn't be fun getting to it in the dark :)

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Sunday, November 02, 2008 Photography Year Book 2008

Myself along with about another 90 or so other users on the photography forum have submitted work to be included in the 2008 Photography Year Book, the book represents a selection of photography work from users who generally post on the photography forum.

Proceeds from the book go to Santa Strike Force!

Order and preview the book below :)

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Friday, October 24, 2008

Superquinn supports the over seventies

As I'm sure your all aware the Government recently announced as part of the budget 2008 that they'd be dropping automatic issuing of medical cards to the over 70's, well everyone';s up in arms and it seems so are Superquinn staff :)

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Monday, October 20, 2008

Charleville Castle

IMG_4556, originally uploaded by TheCabaal.

So during the weekend (18-19th Oct) I stayed in Charleville Castle in Co Offaly, apparently its the most haunted castle in Ireland but have to say I didn't notice anything strange,

The event was arranged as part of the Photo forum on and I have to say it was great craic, haven't got time to process all the shots yet but I'll be uploading them to my flickr set as time goes by.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Data charges on Meteor PAYG

So I've been with Meteor for about two years now but recently got hold of a 2G iPhone but up until now Meteor on Pay As You Go had no data bundles and each kB was charged at 2c, so just to load the front page of could cost 4 euro!!

So today I noticed Meteor PAYG have introduced a 50MB data bundle for 99c a day which they only charge once you go over the first 2kB, not bad!

Not the best bargain in the world but it makes my iPhone usable on edge now :)

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Monday, August 25, 2008

Going Green: food digesture - Part 2

You may all remember awhile ago I posted about a food digesture I installed in my garden, well with all the bad weather and due to poor soil drainage the digesture started to fill with water upto 1ft+ deep.

As the greencone stops working when it fills with this much water this is very bad! So I had to do some re-engineering work on it to solve the problem.

First off I've learned the greencone does a very good job and not smelling because when I dug it out it smelled awful but as soon as it was buried again it was fine and even if you stood within 6 inches of it you wouldn't smell a thing once the lid is closed.

So after a days work, lots of gravel and new clay as well as wooden pegs I've come up with this....

I'll keep you all posted on how the new design works out.

[UPDATE]:Photo now included on the website.

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Friday, August 08, 2008

RTE seeking news editor with Junior Cert geography posted this latest classic fuck up, its nice to know their employing a person who failed Junior Cert Geography, seems they now need somebody with at least a C in Ordinary Junior Cert Geography :)

[Note: Map of America used despite story relates to a country beside Russia]

They've since updated and corrected the story in question

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Sunday, August 03, 2008

Going Green: food digesture

So awhile back I posted regarding my recent purchase of a efergy electricity monitor which I'm hoping to use to keep an eye on whats using power and making me conscious of costs. So far so well with this device but since I have a garden in the house which is something I didn't have in my flat I wanted to go more green when it comes to my rubbish.

In the area we have two company's that will collect recycled items (paper, plastic etc) and non-recyclable items such as plastic wrap etc but I've found that while we have little to no non-recyclable items we have so far ended up getting rid of what we have pretty quickly as it starts to smell.

Well the reason for this is of course food and unfortunately with a normal food composters you can't put meat and cook food into it as its not designed for such things, so with this in mind I did abit of re-search and came up with a Green Cone food digesture.

The green cone takes meat, fish, bread, bone etc and uses bacteria and worms to break down the food into water etc so its re-absorbed by the ground around it, I just spent yesterday digging the hole required for it and its all good to go now...its a pretty big hole considering the large black basket MUST be fully buried for the green cone to work.

So here's some photos of before, during and after installation of the cone, I'll keep you all posted on how I get on using it.

All going well it should reduce costs and help the environment..big thanks to eco shop for the fantastic service getting the green cone to me in 24hrs!

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Friday, August 01, 2008

UTV Upgraded to 3MB

Due to Eircom Wholesales recent speed upgrades to upto 7.6MB my line was upgraded to 3MB last weekend :)

DownStream Connection Speed 3072 kbps
UpStream Connection Speed 384 kbps

Down Up
Line Attenuation 16 db 4 db
Noise Margin 27 db 19 db

Not bad :)

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Friday, July 18, 2008

Father branded as pervert for taking photos of his kids

I normally don't read the trash "paper" that is the Daily Mail, however I was browsing the News & Media forum on and came across this interesting Daily Mail story regarding a father who was abused by other parents because he was taking pictuires of his two children while in the park.

While there is no laws restricting a member of the public from taking photos in a public place it seems some people seem to believe they have the right to restrict somebody from taking pictures of their own children because they fear he or she will take photos of their children.

Below is a bit from the story:

He said: ‘The children wanted to go on an inflatable slide and I started taking photos of them having a good time. Moments later the woman running the slide told me to stop.

‘When I asked why, she told me I could not take pictures of other people’s children. I explained I was only interested in taking photos of my own children and pointed out that this was taking place in a public park.

‘I showed her the photos I had taken to prove my point. Then another woman joined in and said her child was also on the slide and did not want me taking pictures of the youngster.

‘I repeated that the only people being photographed were my own children. She said I could be taking pictures of just any child to put on the internet and called me a pervert. We immediately left the show.’

Complete madness if you ask me!

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