Business Unusual

Rants from a working stay-at-home dad

Friendly Fridley Bold Idea: make Old Central trail a raised path

November 23rd, 2015 by Justin

In Christopher Alexander’s A Pattern Language, he explains how raised paths literally elevate its users to a status above the automobile. I suggest doing this for the entirety of the trail along Old Central Avenue, from it’s split from MN-65 on the south end to 81st Ave. NE on the north. It is an important bicycling and pedestrian connection that is also serviced by Route 10.

It would not require any changes in existing traffic controls – there is only one traffic signal on this route (seen at map marker “A”):


Meatball Racing Lifts Off

November 9th, 2015 by Justin

jules rocket

Jules joined cub scouts this year and as part of joining, he was given a cub-scout branded Estes rocket to build and launch at the Rocket Into Scouting event to jump start his membership.

Vintage Trans-Am Go Green Envy Challenger

October 26th, 2015 by Justin

In the spirit of Crawl, Walk, Run, after racing twice in the USGT class and doing nothing much but crashing and annoying lapping traffic, I decided it was time to slow down. I repurposed my HPI RS4 for US Vintage Trans-Am, commonly known as VTA.

Go Green with Envy

I wanted to drive a great looking muscle car, something I could see myself driving in real life. One image that was stuck in my mind was this Challenger:


Crossing the chasm in suburbia

October 12th, 2015 by Justin

In the fall of 2014 I had the opportunity to assist city officials with bicycle and pedestrian counts. I honestly don’t know where the statistics I recorded go, or if they’re actually used. But some observations I made unrelated to the bike/ped count were intriguing…

Crawl, Walk, Run

September 28th, 2015 by Justin

This is a rule we use in life. You have to learn to crawl (or scoot), then walk, then run. I’ve treated my (re)entry into R/C racing the same way.

Alternate Crawl – Tamiya Mini

There is an alternative way to enter on-road R/C racing than Vintage Trans-Am (which I’ll talk about below) which is slower, but still a ton of fun. It is the Tamiya Mini class.

Tamiya Mini Cooper

SRAM Automatix on my 29er

September 14th, 2015 by Justin

I have a single speed bike. I chose a single speed for it’s simplicity. I just get on it and pedal. It has suited me well for about 6 years. The only thing that has changed is kids.

These darn kids, they start at 6 or 7 pounds and eat and grow, and grow and eat and never seem to stop! I used to carry Jules on the back of my bike in a babyseat that attaches to the rear rack. Then Marlo came along and I had the opportunity to buy a Chariot trailer from my friend whose two kids were now riding on their own.

1S-2S Electronic Speed Controllers

August 31st, 2015 by Justin

Looking for an electronic speed controller (ESC) for your R/C car than can handle both 1-cell (1S) and 2-cell (2S) lithium polymer (lipo) batteries has proven to be a difficult landscape to navigate. Some of this has to do with what the market will bear. Typically if you’re running a 1/12 scale car, you’re only running 1S batteries. If you’re running a 1/10 scale car, it’s 2S.

The 1S need for me comes from the fact that here in Minnesota, the local track runs a variant of Vintage Trans-Am (VTA) that uses a 17.5 turn motor and single cell battery. It was a carry-over from 1/12 scale cars that ran on 4-cell NiCad or NiMH batteries. The idea was to keep the VTA cars relatively slow, and to keep the cost down.

The drunken 2-year-old

August 17th, 2015 by Justin

No I haven’t been giving my 2-year-old wine, scotch, or beer. The point is, I don’t have to. She acts like a drunk 24/7. If you don’t believe me, I present for your amusement, the ways a 2-year-old is like a drunk…

They’re easily incited. If a chant is started, they’ll quickly join in, whether or not the chant goal meets their needs, they just want to join in the fun.