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Workshop Sunday updates!

I spend most of the day finishing the battery tray for Durandal, then took the time to tidy up the electrics and even had a bash around the lawn while it was dry

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/93162-durandal-custom-22-monster/&do=findComment&comment=840489

Then I thought about adding more paint to my CFX-W driver, but he needed some filling around his shoulders, so I did that.  Very dull update here.

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/96310-mst-cfx-w-j45c/&do=findComment&comment=840495

It was a little bit late in the afternoon once that was done, so I did a few quick jobs.  First I popped the shocks off the front of the Super Astute and took out the spacers to grant more shock travel - now there's almost as much downward travel on the front as there is on the rear, which is nice.  It definitely felt more controllable around the garden and less likely to understeer on power or over bumps as the front wheels leave the ground.  That probably explains my terrible performance at the Revival this year.  There's no build thread for the Super Astute, so no photo updates.

I thought I'd have a look at putting a rear winch on the SCX10, but it was a bit too much to do in one afternoon.  Ideas here.

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/94694-scx10-g6-jeep-cherokee-rebody/&do=findComment&comment=840501

Finally I had a look at installing my new ARB axles on my Budget Bruiser (which is really no longer a budget build).  This again was way too much work for the afternoon but it was good to get a head-start on what I might be doing next Sunday and I've already had plenty of ideas of how to proceed.

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/94224-budget-bruiser-maverick-scout-class-1-scaler/&do=findComment&comment=840504

More RC building to follow next Sunday - watch this space :)

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So it's been a while since I last updated here.  Actually I'm sure I posted an update for my garden ramps, but it's not here, so I guess I didn't.  Maybe I imagined it, it's not surprising we're all slightly losing our grips in reality in small but noticeable ways :lol:

Anyway - since making the ramps, my workshop days have solely been spent on the Budget Bruiser project.  There's been three long days of work to get the ARB axles fitted and still more work yet to finish.  Latest updates can be found here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/94224-budget-bruiser-maverick-scout-class-1-scaler/&do=findComment&comment=845228

 

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Workshop Sunday started cold and blustery with an all-new project - converting the FTX LC90 to a stick controller for my daughter's birthday this week.  New thread here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/97556-ftx-outback-mini-x-lc90/

Then I installed some pulleys into the workshop rafters so I can haul my ramps up and store them out of the way.  No pics but promise I'll get some soon.

Finally, I spent a few long and leisurely hours fitting the electricals to the Budget Bruiser and making a tilt mechanism for the body.

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/94224-budget-bruiser-maverick-scout-class-1-scaler/&do=findComment&comment=847790

 

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I was just about to post a rather non-happy update about how Workshop Sunday didn't really go as planned this week, and I have noticed that my latest update to the project list on page 1 has deleted half the considerable content.

Not sure when I'll be back to update this as that's been a huge amount of work to maintain this thread over the past few months and it's really helped me marshall all my projects.

No words.

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OK - moving on, content lost, no point crying over lost posts.  Rule #1 of the internet: if it's important, don't keep it on the internet.  I'll rebuild my project list later.

In the mean time - what have I been up to?

Firstly I finished off the FTX Outback in time for the daughter's birthday last week:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/97556-ftx-outback-mini-x-lc90/&do=findComment&comment=849522

Then Sunday came around.  My first plan was to sort some storage for the ramps, as they are completely in the way:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/97087-garden-ramp-build/&do=findComment&comment=849813

Then out came the Budget Bruiser, which should have been finished but an unexpected wiring short followed by not having any switches in stock set me back a day:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/94224-budget-bruiser-maverick-scout-class-1-scaler/&do=findComment&comment=849819

After that, I pulled out the CFX-W to look at fitting the rear winch, but after drilling a few holes in the chassis to try to relocate the battery tray I gave it up as a bad job - I'll have to make a new rear crossmember to mount the winch on.  No pics as basically nothing was achieved.

The fire was burning out and although it was not yet half three, I was fed up with being on my own in the workshop on my own so I figured I'd do what my wife always says I should do when I'm not really feeling happy in the workshop, and come in the house to do something near the family.  So, I set myself up on the dining table with the SMT10 box and started building.  An hour later and I'd achieved next to nothing since my daughter refused to leave me alone for the entire duration, and then I had to go and cook the dinner, which I still have to do even when it's my day off (admittedly wife and child were very good and helped me do the messy bits).

After that my daughter came toddling over with her new FlySky transmitter and asked if we could drive her truck, so I dug out the buddy cable and we had our first proper driving lesson, which was aces and nicely rounded off what had promised to be a not entirely fulfilling day.  Then I ate spicy chicken legs.

More to follow this weekend, and fingers crossed for an all-new project thread list Coming Soon :)

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This week's update!  I haven't done much in the evenings besides contemplate the relevance of blogging in 2021, especially in relation to RC.  It's probably worth a whole nother thread all by itself, but I've been doing a lot of internal asking of where I can host a proper permanent project thread which won't get lost or damaged like this one did last week.  After discussing with my wife, a blog seemed superficially like the perfect solution - but I'm not sure that anyone really reads them.  I mean, I don't.  I know of a few members who have blogs, and I'll visit from time to time if they link somtehing useful here, but I don't make a point of heading there every week to catch the latest.

Yet I kind of feel that my weekly project update thread could be doing more than it is.  I don't know, I need to ask more what I want to achieve.  Ultimately a greater online presence in general would help my future plans as I rebrand my other creative outlets (my wife and I have been talking a lot about online presence since she's started her own craft business) and it would be helpful if I decide do to push on with a UK monster truck racing event.  It's something I need to give a bit more thought to before I start making too much noise about it.

Otherwise, I haven't done much during the week - busy with one thing and another as usual - but here's the progress report from Workshop Sunday:

I started the day trying to get the Budget Bruiser into some kind of driveable state, but a slight disaster with the rear bumper has forced me to rethink my plans.  Read all about it here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/94224-budget-bruiser-maverick-scout-class-1-scaler/&do=findComment&comment=851274

Then, randomly and for no obvious reason, I got my E-Maxx off the wall and started fitting a new body that I've had lying around for a while.  As I was there, I decided to pull out the transmission, just because.  All-new project thread here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/97824-e-maxx-reshell-and-renovation/

Finally I took my almost-finished SMT10 up to the workshop to get the final main assemblage done on the workbench where I had more space.  Catch up on the latest here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/96930-gloryhammer-smt10-race-truck/&do=findComment&comment=851315

 

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1 hour ago, Problemchild said:

Good read mate :)

@administrator may have access to backups 

it’s fab to have so many projects on the go

JJ

Maybe, I wasn't going to bother anyone to fix it tho, it was my fault for using something for other than its designed purpose and not keeping my own copies.  It's not like the data is especially valuable or important, it's just helpful for me as an at-a-glance view of what I'm working on and I hope it adds value to the forum as a central repository for all the threads I've made over the last year.

I can re-make my own local copy in a spreadsheet without too much hassle but I don't know how I can make a central place to share all my stuff across multiple platforms unless I go down the blog route.  I'm not sure if that will add value to the community by giving people another place to go to catch up on some custom builds, or detract from it, by adding yet another RC blog into an internet already stuffed full of half-hearted soon-abandoned RC blogs and forcing those on TC who do read my threads to go away from the forum in order to read and potentially be bombarded with ads once they get there (since I'm in no way pretending an RC build blog will ever pay for its own hosting).

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OK - long time since I've posted an update here - things have been a bit crazy at home recently and I've kind of been getting a bit disorganised.  It sounds crazy but since I lost track of the list in the opening post, I've found it hard to get my head around what I'm doing.  I can't blame it all on that though - I've been trying to save some money recently which means spending less on RC, that means not buying stuff the very second I realise I need it and instead waiting and prioritising my purchases.  But because I wasn't writing this stuff down, I was getting completely overwhelmed with what I actually needed to order so that I wouldn't be stuck without parts come Workshop Sunday.

Well - those of you who have come in via Post 1 might well have spotted that things have changed a bit.  That's right - my list is back!  Actually not in its entirety - some of my big rig stuff is still missing, and the Hopup-vs-Homebrew stuff isn't there, and many, many other things, but that's OK because there's way more than enough to keep me busy not just through the rest of Covid-19 but probably also Covids -20, -21 and -22 as well.

In other news - my entry into Revival 2021 was accepted.  On Saturday I'll be racing the Blitzer Beetle - read all about my race modifications starting here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/97963-blitzer-storm-racing-refresh/

And on Sunday I'll be racing the Top Force Evo again:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/97889-vintage-top-force-evo-refresh/

I also had some time and sunshine to paint my ramps, break a servo on the TXT-1 and have a quick but effective tidy-up of my storage area.

Finally - and the reason why I've not been posting here so much of late - I resurrected my CarManager database.  I'll post up a project thread somewhere later with some screenshots, but basically the app is now working for me as a project and purchase manager.  I've not added all my cars yet but most of them, and added on loads of tasks and purchases, so I can see a list of stuff to do.  I'm able to put estimated prices against planned purchases so I can see how much money I still need to spend, I can put committed dates if I've booked an event and still need to finish stuff before I go, and I can flag my tasks with things like "Paint room" or "workshop" or "long job", that way I can easily pick out the big stuff that I want to do on Workshop Sunday, or stuff that needs painting, or if I want to sit in the house and watch TV I can click "House" and "Quick Job" and it will list all the stuff I could be doing.

The best bit, though, is that it can export all the current incomplete tasks in rich text format, so I can easily update page 1 every weekend after I've closed off all the completed tasks and added in all the inevitable new ones that a weekend in the workshop brings :) 

Watch this space for (hopefully) a more productive update next week.

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Early update - I'm trying to get around to updating my weekly progress a bit earlier so things don't fall so far behind.  The problem is, the more work I do on a Sunday, the longer it takes me to get everything updated!

Anyway - Sunday morning was dry and bright, if a bit breezy, so I went up to the workshop to fit the new race tyres to the Blitzer Beetle project.  Unfortunately my tyre glue had gone off, so that project was shelved until next week.

With the possibility of some local racing in the next few weeks, I pulled down my Xray T4F for a once-over and setup.  A bit of backstory and pics here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/98040-back-to-the-track-xray-t4f/

Then I did the same for my M03, so I have a choice of classes to enter:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/98042-back-to-the-track-m03-club-racer/

All that didn't take too long, so I decided to check the transmission on the Top Force.  It's a good job I did.  Find out why here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/97889-vintage-top-force-evo-refresh/&do=findComment&comment=854583

That still left me with half a day to spare.  My CarManager database was happily serving up unfinished tasks that were not blocked and that I could do in the workshop, so I chose one from the list, and sorted the shock setup on Fifty-Fifty:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/91988-fifty-fifty-wt-01-pro-mod-with-f250-body/&do=findComment&comment=854585

I still had a few hours left before I had to go in to get some dinner, and that turned out to be just enough time to fabricate a new bumper for the Budget Bruiser:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/94224-budget-bruiser-maverick-scout-class-1-scaler/&do=findComment&comment=854627

After that, I was left with less than an hour to spare, which wasn't enough time to start anything big.  I did a bit of eyeballing on the SMT10 body but decided to wait until the body post mounts arrive before making any more cuts, and then I opened up a damaged Power HD servo and an equivalent Alturn to see if the gears were interchangeable, as I can get Alturn gear sets but not Power HDs.  But no, they are very different inside.

So that was my Sunday done :)

In all honesty, I haven't really enjoyed the last few Sundays.  I've been doing it long enough that I've got a bit bored of it, and I'm desperate to get out in the fresh air and do something exciting again - be it a hard day's racing, a technical crawler meet, a day driving lorries around a layout, or just ride my motorcycle down to the coast and eat fish and chips while the cold spring spray blows over me.  Well, this weekend was the turning of the tide - I didn't really do anything differently, but I had a fabulous time.  Listened to some good music, ticked a lot of little jobs off the list and didn't screw anything up too much.  Lots of cars are now ready for the up-coming race season, and if external factors cause it to be cancelled or delayed, I've still got tonnes of other projects I can work on at home.  And even if racing isn't allowed for some reason, hopefully being able to go out solo on the bike won't be too badly frowned upon.

:)

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I think that's a pretty impressive work rate. I spent all of yesterday just on one car! Thanks for keeping this (and your threads updated). They are both entertaining and inspiring :).

 

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4 hours ago, Badcrumble said:

I think that's a pretty impressive work rate. I spent all of yesterday just on one car! Thanks for keeping this (and your threads updated). They are both entertaining and inspiring :).

 

Mostly it's a benefit of finally (after years of sorting, organising and collecting) got almost everything in the places where I need them, and also having an automated app to tell me what to do next.  I guess almost an entire year of Workshop Sundays had got my work rate up too.  It's a tricky balance - if I take my time, mess around and don't stay focussed then at the end of the day I feel miserable because I didn't achieve anything, but if I blast through all these jobs too quickly I'll have nothing to do during the next pandemic :p 

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The downside of cracking through projects so quickly is that I have to keep buying new parts to keep them all in motion, or risk them stagnating.  Right now, with limited income and with some house renovation underway, it's not so easy to keep those parts coming in.

I already ordered the parts I needed to get the Top Force running again, but I decided to replace all the turnbuckles as they're quite old, most are mismatched and many of them are bent.  I figured I should restore the Manta Ray too, as I've been robbing spares off it for the last few years to keep the Top Force racing, and now it's barely an empty husk.  So I should get two sets of turnbuckles.

But you can't buy a turnbuckle set for the DF-01 any more, and the DF-02 set (which is reported to fit well enough) is now rare as hen's teeth, too.  So I figured I'd just order individual turnbuckles.  Except nobody in the UK has enough stock to make up one complete set.  And then when I want the rod ends too (I had trouble with mine popping off during racing last year), it's even harder.

This is one of my gripes about the RC industry - getting hold of stuff without possessing some kind of deep, inner circle knowledge.  I mean, products are out there, but you don't know what you're getting until it turns up, sometimes 3 weeks and a custom charge later, and it's the wrong size.  I've got various sets of cheap shocks lying around that I can't use because they don't come with ball studs and the ball studs seem to be of no size known to man.

In the end, I've ordered all the turnbuckles I need from Asiatees, so I'll probably pay an import charge when they arrive.  They had just 1 pack of Tamiya reinforced rod ends in stock - that's not enough to do one car, let alone two.  So I've ordered two packs of RC4WD M3 rod ends.  They might not be quite the right product but at least they are the right size, have a nice long shank (ideal for turnbuckle adjustment) and come with everything I need.  So at least I can use the RC4WD ends in areas where space doesn't matter and the Tamiya ones where it does (like on the rear upper arm inner mount, where the right hand stud can interfere with the transmission housing).

If I was going to get the Manta Ray running then I'd need some decent shocks.  It came with some cheap alloy units but I doubt they'll be any good for racing, and once again, they come with their own arbitrary spring which is compatible with absolutely nothing else in the universe, so besides oil and preload, I can't tune them.  But you always know where you stand with a Tamiya CVA.  OK, they might be a fair bit more expensive than unbranded alloy shocks, but they work better, fit everything and come with everything you need to get a car running.  And I won't be left hunting for some random three-and-five-fourths-and-a-bit ball studs on backorder for the rest of eternity  just so I can use them as something other than a paperweight.

But even finding CVAs in stock in the UK has been painful.  Eventually, after hunting around every hobby shop I could think of, I found one that listed 2 in stock.  Result.

Well, wowsers - once postage is added on for all the disparate orders I've placed, the cost is more than half-way to a new Top Force Evo kit.  Maybe I should just have bought that instead.

And I've just had an email in from the shop supplying the CVAs to say they aren't in stock after all.

So - my next step is probably to sweep all the Top Force and Manta Ray parts that are littering my workbench into the box from whence they came, stick a lid on it and forget about it until parts start showing up from lands afar, and then spend even more money on a Ford body for my Racing Clod so I can get cracking on the rebuild that I've been putting off for months...

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OK - updates!  I didn't get around to posting updates last week but pretty much all I did was work on my racing clod.  Catch up from the rebuild here:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/93369-mod-clod-rebuild/&do=findComment&comment=855386

This weekend was cut short due to some urgent DIY that needed doing, so I didn't get much done.  I had time to fit the body posts to the SMT10 and do some body trimming:

https://www.tamiyaclub.com/forum/index.php?/topic/96930-gloryhammer-smt10-race-truck/&do=findComment&comment=856569

Then it was back to the racing clod to fit the body posts and trim the body.

This week is looking to be utterly crazy with DIY - more than a little bit annoying really, as today's weather forecast is for 21 degrees C, which is pretty much unheard of for the end of March.  I'm going to have to burn every lunch break and evening this week just getting a room painted, and that's a shame as it's perfect body-painting weather and I could be outside finishing off some of these clear bodies that are taking up so much space.  Fingers crossed I'll be able to mask one of my clod bodies during a meeting later today (there is a benefit to WFH) and throw some paint on it as soon as my hours are done, before I have to go back into a sweaty plastic-covered room and get covered in emulsion paint again.

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Wow.  A month and a half with no updates.  So, what's going on here?

Well, it's been a bit of a crazy time at home.  Lots of DIY projects and trying to organise the house so that I'm better put for working from home permanently (although at the moment I'm voluntarily doing 2 days a week in the office just to get away from the house for a bit).  Plus, literally the day I placed the order for all my furniture for the new office room, the wife decided we're going to have another baby.  Against my better judgement, I might add, not least because it means I'll have to turn my new office back into a nursery again :p 

Things are starting to settle down now but I still have to devote a bit of tomorrow to fitting the side-desk in my new office, which will take as long as it takes and whatever is left becomes my own personal time.  Next week I'll have to do the oil change on the camper because I've been putting it off for way too long.  So the whole "one day off per week" thing that we agreed over a year ago kind of falls apart when there's more stuff to do than I can fit in around work and family time.

Still, on the plus side, I've managed to drag myself away from the TV in the evenings to focus more on my other hobbies, so they're not competing for my Sunday time.  Helped largely by the warming of the weather, although I must say it's taken its sweet time about it, this time last year we were having picnics on the lawn every day, this year I've not only still got the electric heater on in the studio, I've still got the central heating on in the house :o 

So there hasn't been a huge amount for me to talk about here, but there have been some project updates.

My Racing Clod got its body painted back in April while the weather was dry and actually a little bit warm

My SCX10 Cherokee got a new front winch and a hinged body mount

I made a history thread about my Bear Hawk and gave it a clean-up

I've also done lots of little interim jobs that haven't been worthy of documentation.  I've got loads more posts and threads to update but I've chosen not to update my To-Do list on Page 1 because I've got about 3 pages worth of Car Name - Print Label to do and nobody wants to read through all that.  So I'll update it once I've got all those little jobs done.  There's a Tamiya Junkies meet and the first round of the Iconic Cup taking place on the same weekend, so I'm turning it into an epic road trip and taking an entire van-load of runners with me, and most of my RC-related workload for the next two weeks revolves around organising and boxing and labelling everything so I can find it easier next time.

Stay tuned :)

 

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OK - been a long time since my last official update, I've finally cleared down loads of chaff on the To Do list (mostly printing labels and sorting boxes) and updated page 1 of this thread with many of the things that are on my RC radar.  It looks fairly chaotic but a huge part of what's on there probably won't be looked at even this year, due to constraints on both time and money.  But at least I've got a good place to look for things to do if I get a bit of extra time to myself.

Mostly I've been getting stuff ready for the first round of the Iconic Cup and the first Tamiya Junkies meet of the season which are now both less than a week away, and I've got a lot of updates for y'all to catch up on if you care to do so.

The Blitzer Storm has had new pinions, toe-in rear uprights designed by @ThunderDragonCy and proper race tyres ready for a shakedown at RHR on Saturday.  Check it out here

My Novafox got a new motor.  I haven't previously had a build thread for this car, so I created a new one

I created a thread about my Manta Force and added all the work I've been doing on it recently

I fitted new control motors to the FF02 and M03 race cars ready for the Iconic Cup

I made some sway bars for Durandal

But mostly, this weekend I was boxing up all my cars and printing labels for them.  Firstly I got all this lot sorted out:

P5220013.jpg

then I had to find a way to box up the monster trucks:

P5220014.jpg

then added them to the stack:

P5250001.jpg

 

Somehow I have to get all of that in my camper on Thursday evening.  I'll probably have to take out the front passenger seat...

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Once again, it's been a while since I posted anything here - what with a soggy family camping holiday and having to run the house and do all the parenting chores on my own when my wife had a stay in hospital, I haven't really had time for much else.  It'll be a couple more weeks before I have any significant workshop time - there's one full day left to get the Manta Force, Top Force and Blitzer Storm all sorted out for this year's Revival (I can't believe there's still so much to do) plus I also need to fix the awning and various other camping bits that got broken when I went away with the family.  I have no idea how I'll fit it all in.

But that - also inspired by this thread about good things - lead me to write the below.  Originally I intended for it to be a reply to that thread, but it started to divert away from the point.  I figured since I post a bit of personal stuff in this thread anyway, it's probably the best place for it.

So I've been thinking a lot about the size of my collection recently.  When I first came here I was one of the low-income, envious types who could only ever dream of having a big collection.  I had some basic runners with very few hop-ups, hardly any tools, and a little corner in the living room to work on stuff.  Painting was done outside, or not at all.  Over the last decade and a half my life has changed, sometimes very fast but mostly so slowly I barely noticed it, and now I've got more cars than I can count, a hobby room, a good size workshop and a big pile of tools, plus the hard-learned skills to use them.  I go racing, I go crawling, I drive half-way across the country to go to bashes.  I've got RC friends all over the land.

And does it make me happy?  Well, I'd have to say, yes.  It's certainly saved my sanity.

Starting in Lockdown 1.0, every Sunday became Workshop Sunday.  I'd head off to the workshop with a pile of parts and a rough idea and make something cool.  It's hard to argue that it materially improved my life in any way, but it helped me forget about the nightmare going on outside my four walls (and sometimes inside them).

And yet here I am, with less free time than ever, a situation which is going to get a lot worse before it gets any better - and that's a couple of decades away.  I'm still working a 9-5 job while my wife is following her dreams, starting her own crafting business and planning on going back to university for more qualifications.  Although I agreed to everything she's doing and I support her in it, it's had an inevitable knock on my own self-esteem.  She's following her dreams, while I'm working to put food on the table.  What happened to my dreams?

When I was 10, everybody told me I'd be a great musician.  When I was 15, I thought I'd be a rockstar.  When I was 16, I wanted to be a writer.  When I was 17 I thought I'd be a DJ.  When I was 18 I knew I'd be a producer.  When I was 20 I got a renewed love for writing, and every day of my life was about writing.  The 9-5 was just a means to an end, just temporary, just something to slog through until I could finish that first book, which would happen someday.  Someday...  All the ambition, but none of the direction.  I just sat, isolated, in my own lonely little world, creating stuff, getting no feedback, learning nothing, and wondering when it was all going to happen for me, because it never occurred to me that I'd have to go out there and get it for myself.

And here we are, 20 years later, no closer to any of those dreams.  Just another dull guy in another dull job, the very person I never thought I'd be.  Not that I don't like my job, but it's not exactly exciting, and it's not where I dreamed I'd be by now.  RC is an escape from that, it's not too expensive but it's very time-consuming.  All these toys and events, they're great, but they're not my dream.  I can't cut back my work hours, slash my household duties or spend any less time with my family, so if I want to achieve any kind of dream before old age catches up with me then I've got to give up something else and find some focus in my life.

The only problem is - writing and music aren't always stress-relieving.  In fact they're hard work.  Much harder than building cars or going racing.  They require the kind of focus my brain is very bad at, especially when I've got family around.  That wasn't so bad when I lived alone, had few distractions around me and all the time I wanted to sit and create, but now, if I want to make it work, I have to make it work during the times I'm free to do it.

And I'm afraid.  I'm afraid that without the weekly stress-buster of a day in the workshop, and the added workload of a day in the studio, my mental health will plummet and I won't be able to function.  But this is just a fear.  It's not the reality, because it hasn't happened yet.  Maybe it will, maybe it won't, but until and unless I try, I'll never know.  Now I'm a middle-aged man regretting the time and opportunities I wasted when I was young, some day I could be an old man regretting the time and opportunities I wasted when I was middle-aged.  Maybe, just maybe, swapping out my day in the workshop for a day in the studio will make me the happiest I've ever been - I can't say as happy as I was when I was 25 and single, because I was miserable then, more miserable then than I am now.  My family make me happy.

It comes down to something I've been learning about recently: fear of success.  My wife talks about it a lot in her crafting-for-mental-health group.

For example, I'm not a very assertive person.  In fact, I'm a yes-man.  I hate being a yes-man, I wish I wasn't a yes-man, I feel ashamed to admit I'm a yes-man.  It doesn't fit the macho image of a proper male to bow down and be a yes-man to everybody.  But after 41 years, I've never learned to not be a yes-man.  My wife has told me again and again that I need to be more assertive, and that she'd support me if I wanted to do some assertiveness training.

Now let's say I do that.  Let's say I succeed.  Let's just imagine for a moment how much the dynamic of the relationship at home will change if I stop saying yes to everything.

That's fear of success, right there.

So, what is this post about?  Am I selling up, getting rid of all my stuff?

No, not yet.  In fact nothing needs to be sold or go anywhere.  It won't hurt to take time off.  I've still got some events booked over the next couple of months, and I want to get out locally with some friends more often - these long-distance events are crippling my fuel budget - I'll see those through, and I'll see what happens as we move into crawling season, but I think it's time to focus on ambition and find out what success looks like.

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First of all I hope your wife is doing well now!

Focussing on your real ambition is a good thing and I hope you find out what success looks like doing just that. Taking care of a young child, running a household and working a fulltime job take a lot of your time and, maybe even more important, energy. Even if you are doing it together with your wife. In Dutch we call it "de tropenjaren" (the tropical years in English but I think that doesn't ring a bell, it comes from our colonial times when the years you worked in a tropical colony counted as double years for your pension because the circumstances were tough) and I think it will take a lot of determination to follow your dreams at this point. But I also think it may give you the energy to push forward! So go for it if you really want it!

But please don't leave us here. I will really miss your stories.

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30 minutes ago, bavee said:

In Dutch we call it "de tropenjaren"

Thanks for the kind words :) 

de tropenjaren is an interesting concept - I don't know that we have any kind of phrase here for it.  In our typically cynical English way we tend to refer to parenthood as a curse, right up until someone says "but you wouldn't have it any other way" at which point the correct response is "no, no, of course not!"  :lol:

I guess I've accepted how much time and effort goes into raising a family, what is bothering me now is I'm working a full-time job and putting the vast majority of my wages straight into running the household, while my wife is putting the vast majority of the wages from her temp job directly into a saving pots for her university course, she'll have two years out of work once the course starts, and just this morning said to me "I really hate working, but it's only a temp job so I can quit whenever I like" - and go back to having several days at home every week to focus on running her craft business (which isn't making any money yet) while I'm still working to pay the bills.  I can't complain, since I agreed to it all in the first place, but it feels like it's kicked off the mid-life crisis at a time when I can't do anything about it :P

Anyway, I'm not making any immediate plans to change my lifestyle - I'm still committed to several events, I've got lots of stuff to sort out and I'm still full of crazy new ideas I want to try - I'm just getting my head into the idea that I don't have to spend my Sundays away from home racing or in the workshop elbow-deep in aluminium dust.

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Yeah, de tropenjaren are the first three years. After that things will get easier. They say. Keeping my fingers crossed ;).

And money. Having money isn't everything, not having it is.

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Another quick update now that I've got to the bottom of my individual thread updates backlog.  Mostly the last few weeks have been about getting ready for Revival 2021, which kicks off this very Friday.  You can read the latest here:

Blitzer Storm

Manta Force

Top Force

I wasn't expecting to start any new builds this summer, as I've already got enough projects on my plate, but just as the UK was about to undergo the Great Unlocking of 2021 everybody in my household got pinged by separate contacts - myself and my daughter because we went to see her cousins just as one of them developed a cough that turned out to be covid, my wife because she went on a hen party with someone who later tested positive, and my daughter again a couple of days later because she'd been at nursery (after seeing her cousin but before the positive test result came back).  So all of us were stuck in the house together for quite some time, and just as it looked like it was all over and I was literally on my last day of isolation before I could go out for a walk, my daughter developed a really nasty cough.  So we had to restart our isolation.  Officially our isolation period ends tomorrow night, the night before I set off for Revival, but if either myself or my wife develop symptoms then I have had to restart my isolation and miss the event.  After months of prep and a lot of money spent, that would be something of a downer :o 

With all of that stuck-at-homeness, I decided I really needed a new kit to build (because I didn't want to build any of the kits I already had, and also because I have robbed the bearing packs from them for other things and so I can't build them anyway).  So I ordered something I've wanted for years, a GMade BOM.  You can read about the build so far here

In an unexpected turn of events, my daughter's covid test came back negative!  It turns out there are some really nasty colds doing the rounds in the local area, totally out of season but with all the distancing that's kind of understandable.  During the warmer weather last week I was sitting in the workshop with the door open, and I could hear at least 3 different people in the houses behind having a lot of trouble with chesty coughs, with that and being stuck in isolation due to 3 different pings, and the news being full of reports of food shortages and business closures because so many staff are off work in isolation, it sort of psychologically felt like we were stuck in the epicentre (or is it pandicentre?) and under siege by the 'rona.

So we're off the hook, my daughter is all better (I am listening to her sing Old Macdonald to herself over the monitor right now), and we have literally seen nobody since our isolation started two weeks ago, so I should be safe from pings or track and trace calls before I set off :) 

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Glad to hear that Young Ax is well, I had a similar experience with Mrs BC whose PCR test was negative but her cough is so bad, she's constantly saying 'its not COVID, honest!'

Good luck with getting to the Revival and keep up the BOM work!

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2 hours ago, Badcrumble said:

her cough is so bad, she's constantly saying 'its not COVID, honest!'

Around here it is a modern tradition to say "burn the witch!" every time we hear someone cough :lol:

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