There were 5 people for the MMC breakfast and after eating Donna and I drove over to the Club’s Tech Day just to see if we could pop the non-working radio out of the dash. Donna was hoping to have someone magically heal it by laying on of hands, didn’t happen. Turns out, between two of us, Rudy and I, we could only get the right half of the head unit loose from its mounting. The left side would not budge. Of course we only had the bent into U shaped coat hanger pieces to work with, yeah, that’s it, we didn’t have the proper tools. I did manage to get an additional blood blister on my left hand when I pinched the web between the thumb and forefinger cutting the coat hanger.
After scouring the interwebs for hours looking for solutions to my radio issue I settled on buying a new aftermarket radio. Because we like to be able to walk away from the Miata in a shopping center parking lot with top down and not have to worry any, I was looking for the least flashy looking head unit. I found it, a Jensen MP1524. It’s a veritable wallflower, but it has an inner beauty that includes all the modern bells and whistles. The downside is that the unit isn’t even shipping from the manufacturer yet. Crutchfield lists it as not being available until 6/15, so now we wait.
Started down, went up, went down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 10/24/08: 1224
We took the afternoon off work today and on the way home we ran a couple errands. Paid the water bill and stood in line for a long time at the Post Office so I could mail back the no longer needed GROM AUX-IN Adapter. Because of the time of day and our unusual route home we ran smack into some nearly standstill type traffic on Whiskey Road. I zipped a quick left in a brief traffic gap so we could come home along a couple of Aiken’s on purpose dirt roads through the horse district. That meant that I needed to wash the Miata this evening because it needs to look its best tomorrow because Donna and I are organizing the MMC’s monthly breakfast.
It sure is nice to have the garage back, really keeps the top transitions to a minimum. That and only driving on days it is not going to rain. I had to go all the way back to April 22nd to find the last time the top changed status.
Been awhile since we did any geocaching, but that is going to change tomorrow as we are at least going to go hide a cache. Might even look for one.
It is also been a while since we’ve been for a walk in Hitchcock Woods, but that is due to change on Tuesday when Donna and I take some company visitors for a stroll in there.
Started down, went up, went down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 10/24/08: 1222
The only radio we listen to in the Miata is from RadioParadise.com. OK, occasionally on a Saturday morning I’ll tune to an NPR station to catch some classic Click & Clack, but 99.9% is an MP3 ripped from an internet stream and burned to a CD. Ten of those CDs sit inside a cartridge housed inside a Sony Disc Changer that is tucked into one corner of the trunk. It has been that way for the 9–1/2 years the Emperor has been in the family. This same changer even predates the Emperor for a couple years prior it sat inside the spare tire of the trunk of our previous Miata With No Name.
Recently this unit has been randomly powering off leaving nothing but static emanating from the speakers. I’ve checked all the connections and they all seem sound, wiggling any of them (especially the power cable to the changer) will not make it hiccup, once or twice a ride it will cut out for anywhere from a few seconds to around a minute. Annoying to say the least. Last week I decided to do something about it.
I ordered a GROM AUX-IN Adapter that that allows the use of an iPod and plugs into the back of the Miata’s head unit where the OEM Mazda disc changer would have went. We happen to have a 4Gig Nano that only gets used one or twice a year when Donna and I fly in an airplane, the rest of time it sits in a charger waiting patiently, this will give it reason to get excited for each new day.
The adapter arrived in the mailbox on Monday, so naturally the rest of the day was spent ripping out the Sony Disc Changer, reclaiming 5% of the Miata’s tiny trunk space. Then I needed to remove the OEM radio to get at the connector on the back. Using instructions found in the Miata.net Garage I made my removal tools from a coat hanger, but no amount of pushing/pulling/squeezing/ wiggling would get it to come out. After 20 minutes, a couple of cuts, several bruises and a blood blister on my left index finger I gave up. I guess I might have to breakdown and buy 2 sets of the official removal tools. I had disconnected the battery to take out the CD Changer, so I hooked it back up and set the time on the clock and even loaded a couple of the local radio stations as presets.
Tuesday morning when I got in the car to drive it to work the radio didn’t come on! Pushed the power button and it just bounced back at me, no click. The display didn’t even light up with the clock. There wasn’t any faceplate illumination either. Didn’t have time to do any troubleshooting, so we took the Sonata to work.
At work I called a couple auto parts stores to see if they had any of the removal tools and struck out. Then I tried a local car audio place and the guy there said just bring in the car and I’ll pop it out for you. After work I went there and lickity split he had the unit loose. Amazing what the proper tool for the proper job will do. I thanked him and came home. The radio fuse was fine. I pulled the head unit out and disconnected the harness. Got out my trusty Radio Shack Multimeter and with with the pin out diagram for connecter (thanks again m.net garage) checked for 12 volts. Unfortunately I had the correct voltage at the correct pins. I say unfortunately because that meant the radio was dead.
Hooked the radio back up, slid it back into the dash, buttoned it up so the interior looks good and wishfully tried the power button again (still didn’t work.) Now comes decision time, try and locate a very scarce used Miata Bose head unit keeping AUX-IN box or return the AUX-IN box and just buy a new aftermarket head unit with the iPod function already built in. Until a decision is made it’ll be kind of quiet in the Emperor’s cockpit.
The sound of silence will not be as hard to get used to as it will be to not see the time on the radio display…
As part of the kitchen remodel that spread out over nearly the whole house we needed some new living room curtains. We shopped online and found some we like at Lowes. We went to the store and they had them on the shelf, but only in the 84″ length and we needed 95″. To make sure these were what we wanted we bought one panel in 84″ to take home and hang.
We like ‘em. I go to Lowes.com to order 6 panels (its a big window) and there are 3 delivery methods, Store Pickup, Lowe’s Truck Delivery & Parcel Shipping. Store Pickup is free. Parcel Delivery is for whatever reason grayed out and listed as unavailable. Truck Delivery is $79!, roughly half the total cost of the 6 panels themselves. Guess which one we “chose?”
A week or so later when we get home from work there are 2 messages on the answering machine. Both are from Lowes, 2 different voices, letting us know are order can be picked up. It was the night of the monthly MMC meeting and this month it was in Aiken, so we decided to leave a little early and pick up our curtains before hand.
We go right to the service desk as that was how it worked last time. I tell the woman behind the counter, “I’m here to pick up an internet order.” She asks for my phone number and she enters it in the register. She then looks behind her into the cage on the wall. She looks back at the register. She glances at the phone. Back at the cage. The register. The phone. She sighs. She picks up the phone and pages a Mrs. Someone. We wait. She takes a couple steps back and glances at the cage again. A guy shows up behind the counter. She looks at him. She looks at the register. She looks at the phone. Donna corners the second individual and wants to know what is taking so long to retrieve our order. He says he’ll check and off he goes. We wait some more.
The person who was paged finally makes an appearance and we let her know that this is unacceptable. We had two separate calls telling us our order was in, but no one can seem to find it. She apologizes and says, “I’ll go see what is happening.” We wait. The original woman behind the service desk is looking nowhere and especially not at us. I’m so mad at this point if they showed up with the curtains now I might just walk back around to the other side of the service desk that is marked RETURNS and get my money back. Instead we leave the store, leaving who knows how many people looking for our curtains, so we can make the Miata Club meeting.
An hour and a half later we return to Lowes and the woman behind the counter recognizes us and picks up the phone right away. She says someone will be bringing our curtains right out. We wait. Every minute, minute and a half, we would here conversation coming our way and each time it wouldn’t be our curtains. It took over 5 minutes before they finally arrived. We left very disappointed in the experience vowing to shop at Home Depot from now on. And swearing we won’t ever do the ship to store thing ever again.
Donna likes this one style of pants from a certain label for use at work and always has at least 4 pair hanging in her closet. They are permanent press of some sort of polyester that wears like iron, so it is usually 4 or 5 years before she needs to replace them. This year was the year. They’re sold at JC Penny and Belk, so it is usually a simple matter of … continue reading
When it came time to buy the microwave for the remodeled kitchen, Amazon had it available for $130 with free shipping, but Wal-Mart online had it for $100. If I had the microwave shipped to me it would have cost $15 and then I would have to worry about the UPS man leaving the package on the doorstep at home or having it … continue reading
While reading Google News this morning, my eye caught an interesting headline, “Ripple Effect After Fiery Crash Takes Out Only Place To Get Gas…”, so I clicked on it.
Wait a minute. That name sounds familiar. Chugwater, WY. I’ve been there! It was our first geocache find in Wyoming back in 2009 when we took a vacation out west.
Chugwater, WY — Stopped in this small town to grab a geocache. Most of all the … continue reading