Friday, June 30, 2006

Aston Martin

Aston Martin
Originally uploaded by treough.
This Aston Martin was accelerating hard as it merged onto the freeway in Fremont. It's a very muscular car, with styling that was copied by US pony cars. I remember that the rear suspension was by de dion axle, but I can't remember the name of the car.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Hold Everything

Holdeverything is having a going out of business sale with 60% off everything, bringing their prices down to were they should have always been.

Tomorrow is the last day of the sale.

Thanks Apartment Therapy SF

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Wash Me

"When the dust gets thick on the back window of his Mini Cooper, Scott Wade uses it as a canvas to create temporary works of art.

"Wade lives off the unpaved Roadrunner Road north of San Marcos, which dusts the back windows of his car and gives him the canvases..."

Thanks Core77
Categories:Art Cars

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Bridge Gets out of its Own Way

Rather than the obligatory large outdoor sculpture that developers use to apologize for (and draw attention away from) their 'cube factories', this London office park has installed a novel Rolling Bridge.

(cf This sculpture in front of the Bank of America building at California and Kearny. Locals call it 'the bankers heart')

Thanks Apartment Therapy SF


Monday, June 26, 2006

The World's Fastest Indian

A few months ago Lani and I saw this movie starring Anthony Hopkins as the stoic Burt Munroe.

I was born 40 miles from where Burt lived, but I hadn't heard of Burt Munroe or his speed records until now. As a boy, it seemed to me that driving very fast in a straight line, or around a large banked oval track, or over the 1/4 mile, had more to do with automotive engineering than driver skill(As speeds have increased, my opinion has changed).

Invercargill, Southland and even Gore get mentioned in this movie! What an interesting story. I cringed through the first hour, thinking all manner of bad events would befall our hero. I worried for him in the lonely Invercargill suburbs, then worried for him more when he and his motorcycle reach LA. I only began to relax and enjoy the movie when he reached the Bonneville salt flats and got down to business.

Images from

Categories:Movies Cars

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Ferrari 250 California Spyder

Last week I saw Enrico Tenni (son of the famous Moto-Guzzi team rider Omobono Tenni) driving this car through Sausalito.

I believe this is the short wheel base California Spyder with the stiffer chassis, four wheel disc brakes, and a more powerful V12 engine. The Spyder was based on the 250GT Berlinetta coupe, and only 54 SWB California Spyders were made.

These cars sold for over $2m in the late 80's when the market for Ferraris was hot. Today they change hands for around $1m.

June 26th, 2007

Thanks to an anonomous tip, and to the help of members of FerrariChat forum, I have come to the conclusion that this is not a real Ferrari 250 California Spyder.

After comparing this car to the car used in the movie "Ferris Buellers Day Off", I conclude that it is not one of those cars.

Thanks to the helpful people at FerrariChat, I've concluded that this is a reproduction of a 250 California Spyder, using some Ferrari parts.

Here is one of the forum comments:

"Based on the pictures, I'd guess it's a rebody of a later model Ferrari. Gauges, other trim pieces are from a newer model. Motor is a Ferrari motor, but looks larger than a 250. I'd guess that this is a rebody of a 330 or 365 2+2. But it's just a guess."


Saturday, June 24, 2006

Penn Jillette

One day, Penn Jillette will go too far, and someone will be offended.
(Warning: Video requires Macromedia Flash Player, and a tolerance for foul language)

Friday, June 23, 2006

Tow Bar Installation

My Miniature Trailer tow bar arrived by UPS on Wednesday, and I spent two hours today attaching it to the car.

1) shows the car on axle stands with the rear bumper removed
2) the bumper reinforcement removed
3) the tow bar is attached behind the bumper reinforcement. You can see the 1.25" square receiver hitch above the exhaust pipes
4) and 5) the bumper cover is replaced, and the job is complete



Today was 62˚ and foggy in the Inner Sunset of SF. This is the normal cycle here. If we get three hot days, then the fog comes back.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

What is Web 2.0?

Marco van Hout of Design and Emotion explains:

"After we have created website experiences that were focused on retrieving information, it is now the experience itself that has the focus in Web 2.0 developments.

"Even though many criticise the terminology of Web 2.0, I believe it is not such a bad thing to find the right name for an existing and developing phenomenon. Web 2.0 is all about experience... the web is not site-centric anymore, but user-centric. Where with Web 1.0, 1.5, etc. it was all about providing people with information and that was it, Web 2.0 refers to all of those sites that provide an experience."

Good examples are Flickr,, and Wikipedia.


103˚ when I left Fremont, and 70˚ at home in San Francisco.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006


When I left work in Fremont at 4pm the thermometer on the Mini read 99˚ and stayed there until I got to Oakland, where it dropped to 85˚. It was still 85˚on the Bay Bridge and the Central Freeway in SF. It then dropped to 77˚ at the Pan Handle to Golden Gate Park near where we live.

A 22˚ temperature difference between the East Bay and the Inner Sunset of SF is typical. And sometimes the difference is even more dramatic: Driving up the Peninsula, it can be in the 90s at Redwood Shores. Then at Daly City I can take off my sunglasses and turn off the air conditioning because the fog has rolled in.

Tomorrow will be the first Spare the Air day. BART, MUNI, and most other public transportation in the Bay Area will be free so as to reduce pollution.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006


Take your dog to work this Friday June 23rd (Tue Sept. 19th in the UK).

If not for yourself, and if not for your dog, then do it for your coworkers.

Image from The Blue Cross

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Shipping News

I see all types of ships on SF Bay when I'm cycling near Crissy Field and across the Golden Gate Bridge. Oil tankers, container ships, barges, cruise ships, Pilot vessels, Coast Guard rescues, tugs, ferries etc. Now I can figure out what I've seen by watching a time-lapse graphic of the ships. The ships are represented by colored vectors. Pause the time lapse feature and click on a vector to get the ships name, speed and dimensions. That's just so cool!

Thanks MetroBlogging San Francisco

Categories:San Francisco, Gadgets

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Vixen 21

This Vixen 21 was parked on Marinship Way in Sausalito.

The 1986 Vixen 21 used a BMW 6 cylinder turbo diesel and a Renault 5-speed gearbox both mounted at the back. The roof has hinges on the right side for added headroom when parked. The selling points for this RV were fuel economy, handling, and it could be parked in a standard carport. Motoring journalists praised it for being fun to drive. Less than 400 BMW engined Vixens were built at the Pontiac, Michigan factory. Interestingly, they all have the BMW roundel on the front!

(A later model used a GM 3.8L V6/automatic, and had a higher fixed roof)


Saturday, June 17, 2006


I'm using a new Firefox based Browser called Flock to write this. I have Flickr open in the top bar and delicious is open in the side bar. That's everything I need.

Flock co-founder and Chief Executive Bart Decrem says the web is no longer "a big library, a collection of documents to search and consume". He says that people are spending a lot more time sharing on the Web.

So this browser just might be perfect for blogging.

Blogged with Flock

Friday, June 16, 2006

Frank Gehry Table

Gehry's cardboard furniture designs are from 1971!

I liked the chairs because the design appears to use the slight flex of the layered cardboard for comfort.
This table uses tempered glass for a smooth top surface.

(BTW Glass shops that repair storefronts will usually keep the old tempered glass from the front doors. The glass is strong and makes a good tabletop. Plus it's tempered, so it's up to code.)

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Steal This Idea and Improve Upon It

This grass chair is a nice idea. But how about making a really comfortable grass chaise by copying the curves of the Le Corbusier LC4? Nicer!

Thanks Apartment Therapy

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Anthony Bourdain

Author of "Kitchen Confidential" and host of No Reservations on the Travel Channel, Anthony Bourdain will be at A Clean Well-Lighted Place for Books tomorrow Thursday at 12:30

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

DWR Sale

If you're in the area of Union City this weekend, you might want to go to the DWR warehouse sale. Unlike their current meager 10% Herman Miller sale, this is a real sale of blemished items and overstocks.


Monday, June 12, 2006

Ikea + Idea

I think about using the cheap products from Ikea to make other things. Like using these solid berch boxes to make a copy of this Blue Dot bookcase

But design student Kieren Jones takes this concept to a higher level.

From website Moco Loco:
"Kieren Jones uses IKEAs best selling products, the Poang chair and Bumerang clothes hangers, to create new products such as a sled, a stags head and a crossbow that fires IKEA pencils."

Categories:Furniture Design

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Miniature Trailers

The Mini Cooper S has twin exhaust pipes that exit under the bumper at the center rear of the car. Up until now the only way to fit a tow bar was to buy the Mini Fini Sport-Link and custom attachments, and then cut holes through the rear bumper. But now there's an excellent alternative that uses the existing hole for the center mounted reverse light, and a standard 1 1/4" tow hitch!


Saturday, June 10, 2006

Bring Your Bike to Work Day

Today was a scheduled work day at the factory, and a chance for workers to show their Harley Davidson motorcycles.

Friday, June 09, 2006

ScanGauge II Automotive Computer

If your (North American market) car is a 1996 or newer model, you can plug this gadget into the wiring harness and have a car 'computer' that displays rpm, mpg, coolant temperature, distance to empty, maximum speed, battery voltage, intake air temperature ...
Installation involves plugging the connecting cable into the wiring harness under the dashboard. That's it! $170.

Thanks Gizmodo and ThinkGeek

Categories: Cars Gadgets

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Furniture District

This area near 8th and Townsend has the San Francisco Design Center and dozens of furniture stores. You could spend days going through all the warehouses. I started looking through the Design Center, but I tired after covering just one floor of the building. Outside, next to the new sidewalk, were parked these Minis. On the other side of the street pedestrians are still walking in traffic.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Zeitraum Doze

We're getting closer to moving to our new apartment at 8th and Kirkham. Tomorrow evening we meet with the other owners for our first co-op meeting and social get-together. I'm dying to get the keys to our new place so I can take measurements for furniture and rugs.

The first room to furnish will be the bedroom. Our new bedroom will be smaller, so we need a queen size bed that's not too massive. This cantilever bed design from Zeitraum might be the ticket. It appears to hover above the floor, giving the illusion of lightness and space.

Thanks mocoloco

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Townsend Street

Townsend Street between 4th and 7th remains unimproved (and this is not a street worthy of preservation) while new development takes place all around it: The Embarcadero, Giants Stadium, 3rd street light rail, residential towers, SF Design Center...

This must be one of the last streets in The City without a sidewalk. The south side of the street is bordered by a chain link fence that encloses the Caltrain rail yard. And the north side is bounded by warehouses. On both sides of the street cars are parked perpendicular. When you get off the train at 4th and Townsend, you have to walk along the street between the moving traffic and the parked cars. It's all very uncivilized.

But now the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is working to add a footpath and bike lanes on Townsend, and we can help by signing their online petition.

Photo from SFBC
Categories:San Francisco

Monday, June 05, 2006

Corbin Sparrow

On the way home today I saw this rare electric Corbin Sparrow on Highway 880 in Fremont.

The first Sparrow was built in 1996, and sold for $13,900. The later model seen here sold for $17,000. The body is a fiberglass monocoque holding four batteries up front and four batteries under the seat. Top speed is 65mph and the range is 30 miles. It uses belt drive to the rear wheel, and has three disk brakes. Entry is through a door on the right side.

A total of only 285 Corbin Sparrows were registered, and very few are actually driven because of mechanical and electrical problems. This and financial problems forced Corbin Motors into bankruptcy in 2003.


Sunday, June 04, 2006

Eames Video

Charles and Ray Eames video. Moving away from Chicago, the distance increases in powers of 10 until we are looking back at earth from 10^24 meters, then zooms back down to 10^-16

Categories:Science Movies

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Maserati Indy

The 'Indy' name is in celebration of Maserati victories at the Indianapolis 500 in 1939 and 1940. This US market version was called the Indy America, and has a 4.7l V8 and 5-speed. 0-60 in 7.5 seconds and a top speed over 155mph.

Just over 1100 Indys were produced from 1969 to 1975. Initially it had a 4.2l engine. Later versions had a 4.7l and then 4.9l engine. The 4.9l model can be distinguished by an extra bonnet grille in front of the wipers. Surprisingly, the rear suspension uses a live axle and leaf springs.

The Indy is a proper 4 seater. There looked to be plenty of leg room in the back seat, plus room for luggage.


Friday, June 02, 2006


This puzzles me. I think I'm being asked to sit down to pee?