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Tommy T.

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Tommy T. last won the day on November 10

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About Tommy T.

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    Davao City
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    Cooking, Baking, Eating, Sailing, Loving, Ham Radio, Scuba Diving, Swimming

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  1. Wow! You did a lot of comparison shopping. And thanks, too, I forgot about Abenson. I bought the stereo there and it was cheaper than the other places I checked by a little bit. How about the installation? Did you do that or did the store where you bought hire someone or have their own crew? And I have noticed the same thing that prices seem very close on many products in different stores.
  2. Can anyone suggest a store where they found the best prices for split type inverter aircon units? I am thinking Panasonic for reasons previously discussed here but also Kopel. I have not priced them yet but I know that Citi Hardware, Wilcon, SM Appliance carry at least some of these. I would also need installation and am interested in quality of service too. I realize the service aspect will likely differ between here and other locations but maybe there is trend or history that some can share?
  3. If you are concerned about leeches... just wear decent shoes, socks and long pants...same as if thinking about leeches anywhere else...
  4. I agree with you partially Gary, that the main strength is with the pillar and beam. However, the walls do add support and must also be self supporting. So my feeling is more is better. Additionally, better construction will tend to be a bit better insulation for sound and temperature, I am sure. We believe also that the improved wall construction should (emphasize "should") minimize future cracking issues. I will let you know in a few years if that turns out to be true... We carefully inspected the beams and pillars already in place and found no defects or cracks from either construction or earthquake. So we are pleased with it all so far. By the way, the ground, itself, is very solid so that certainly won't hurt...
  5. Another visit to the home site early this morning. Now it's just over two months of construction. Here is the downstairs bathroom (CR). We are making it a bit oversize compared to the "standard" size usually constructed here. Also, the shower will be 1.5 m wide so somewhat wider than standard also. L doesn't really care, but I like to have a bigger bathroom and shower than the standard. Plus both will have windows in the shower wall too. A friend of mine from university has a house with a window in the shower and it is wonderful for the fresh air and also a view when cleaning up. The kitchen is the space to the far left, stairway adjacent the wall at the near left and the living room to the right. The ground beneath the ground floor slab is now filled and next will be gravel and then the rebar and plumbing. Kitchen is front and center-right here and downstairs bedroom in the center far away. Except that there will be an angle-iron fence and gate in the way, this is the view out the front door. It is all old fruit orchard property. Roof deck terrace slab forms being built and column rebar has already been installed. We are making a number of relatively small changes in dimensions of rooms and locations of doors now that we can step inside and really visualize things better. The foreman is a very smart man and is keeping a sharp eye on things. L talks to him for at least an hour on each visit to ask questions and give suggestions. She has a very sharp eye and misses very little. He also gives us suggestions - mostly about how to improve the build. One of the best of these, so far, was to change the location of the horizontal rebar in the walls - when built - instead of one every four rows (files), as detailed on the blueprint, to one every three rows. This will give added stability to the walls. And this will be done at no extra charge. So the completed home will be of Filipino/Filipina design and construction but with a lot of western (my) influences. I have been applying many of the suggestions other members have offered in the forum and most of them are readily accepted by the contractor and foreman. I believe the foreman and workers respect L and I because of our participation and knowledge of many parts of the construction. We both notice they work more carefully now than before - not to say they were sloppy - but they seem to pay more attention, especially when we chat with the foreman about technical details. The contractors are also aware that we are rather knowledgeable about a lot of the construction process and so they seem to be on their toes also. Oh... another detail that might help any others who are or will build homes or structures here: The standard method of laying the hollow blocks seems to be to slop on some of the cement (masa) on a layer, place the next block on top and tap it down without much regard for finesse since the walls will be plastered over with more cement. Then they slop some cement down the holes in the hollow block and go on to the next. I thought about this when watching and realized that this would not necessarily make the strongest wall because the cement does not always get to the bottom of the holes and also doesn't fill them up completely. So I suggested that the masons take small lumber pieces and tamp down the cement into the hollow block holes to work it all the way to the bottom, then add more cement, tamp again and repeat until full. I explained this to L who explained it, in turn, to the foreman and contractor. Everyone thought this was a good idea and so this will be their method. I think they may do it on some projects, but maybe only when requested. I am sure this will result in sturdier walls than many. L pointed out that, in the places where there are gaps in the walls from broken bits of hollow block or sloppy application, the masons again tended to just toss some of the plaster at the gaps or holes then smooth it all over and call it good... "No, no, no," said L... They must first take the regular Class A cement and fill any gaps or holes carefully with a trowel and make sure to shove it firmly into the gaps. Then, after that is done, go back and do the plastering cover layer. L also questioned the foreman about the rebar size and quality being used and knew what they should be. He came up with the right answers so she was happy. All in all, we have no complaints and the progress is finally getting very noticeable.
  6. Hahaha... so I am done with bbq beef for today. I am making a beef stew right now that will be a killer!!! Even Filipinos will love it - in spite that there is no sugar in it!
  7. I appreciate your comment, Mick. And I am very appreciative of your sharing your method of dry ageing beef that works for you... Thank you for sharing that. I know you are not trying to convince anyone to do this - this forum, as I understand it, is a place to share ideas, plain and simple. Some of them work for some of us and some of them don't... It doesn't bother me either way... And I am very grateful you shared yours today... Please don't misinterpret my comments in my post? I was also just sharing what I learned after researching the topic a bit. It was not meant as a slight toward you and what you have achieved there. I am pleased, really, that you found a way to do what you described... I just am not sure that I can duplicate your efforts, so I don't think I will attempt them - at this time.
  8. Jim.... I just spent some time with Kuya G... He (actually, she, in this case) had a lot of information. After reading it, I think I will pass on and not try this dry ageing unless Mick can provide convincing reason or information on how to do this properly. There's also wet ageing that I unwittingly did on the yacht. All I was trying to do was prolong the usable life of beef on the yacht using a vacuum bag system because all I had was refrigeration - no freezer. That worked and, I think, did help tenderize the meat, but it did make for a bit of a funky taste that I was not so fond of. However, some of that could be reduced by rinsing the "cured" beef in a bit of water. Anyway, here are two links that you might find informative. I would really like to hear Mick's take on these if he looks at them: https://jesspryles.com/how-to-dry-age-steak/ https://jesspryles.com/dry-aging/
  9. Yeah.... I am puzzled too. I am going to try checking with Kuya Google and see what he has to say about this. I just bought some nice looking, thick cut, top round roast that I used to like to make London Broil. But not with the tough hides they sell here. I am really eager for some tender beef!!!
  10. Thanks for the idea Mick. You are right, some of the so-called rib-eye is more like shoe leather. However, I have left beef in the refer for just a few days and it takes on a rotten smell already. I know that blood goes off quickly. What kind of preparation and how cold do you set your refer?
  11. Thanks, Earth. You just made me think about this all again. I am sure I mentioned it before but, considering the proliferation of earthquakes recently I will make also some suggestions as reminders: I think it's a good idea to keep some quantity of "extra" supplies on hand - from the basics of rice, canned food, pasta, bottled and washing water, long life vegetables - to medical supplies. Consider having some extra bandages and wound dressings of small to large size. Also antibiotic ointments, anit-fungals, Betadine (or equivalent). You may require them due to earthquake damage or a relative, friend or neighbour may require assistance from you. Stock some extra paper towels (if you use them), toilet paper, rags, sanitary supplies, soaps. Keep maybe a two week's - or even a month's - supply of over the counter meds to treat pain, allergy, heart maintenance (like aspirin) or other ailments. We discussed these before. Visit your doctor and make sure to get back-up quantities of prescription meds, especially for heart, blood pressure, breathing, diabetes. Just rotate them through as you use them routinely to keep them fresh. Seldom used meds will usually last a year or more if stored even a bit properly - typically in a fridge. Don't forget the blue pills... Supplies and electricity and water can be disrupted for anything from hours to weeks, depending on your location and the state of preparedness of local authorities and businesses. L was recently in Tokyo during a Cat III typhoon followed by a strong earthquake. Every store was closed - not even 7-11s were open - for a few days. This was very unsettling for her and an eye opener for me. Keep on hand extra batteries for flashlights (and have more than one really bright one), radios, emergency lights. Also kerosene for oil lamps. If you have a car or motorcycle, consider either keeping an extra jerry can (locked up so it won't be siphoned or stolen) or maybe make a habit of keeping at least 1/4 or even 1/2 tank of gas in your vehicles instead of waiting for them to be running on fumes when you tank up. Here in the Philippines the supply lines seem a bit thin so, after some sort of disaster strikes that shuts down these lines, it may take a long time to re-establish - count on it. Good luck to us all!
  12. Did that include the rubber ducky, Graham?
  13. Yow! You are right about that being expensive. Plus I assume there would be maintenance and filter and chemical replacements too? I can clean or replace a lot of shower heads and other plumbing before I would pay for that, I think. And we have the same situation here - always water stains on everything and the toilet looks nasty no matter what cleaners I have tried or how hard I scrub...
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