Author Archives: Xinhai Dude 辛亥生

About Xinhai Dude 辛亥生

The name Xinhai Dude 辛亥生 is a pun in Chinese, as it means both “he who was born in Xinhai” as well as “he who studies Xinhai”. I had an ambitious plan to write something about the great Xinhai Revolution of 1911, thus my blog https://xinhaidude.com. But after an initial flurry of activities the initiative petered out. One day I will still carry it through. But for now, this website has turned into a conglomerate of my work on various topics of interest to me, including travel pictures, RC model airplane flying, ice skating, classical music composition, science fiction short stories, evolution and atheism.

Remodeling a garage

We’d been mulling over garage remodeling for a decade. The garage remained the same way we found it from the previous owners, for ten years. As cliché as this may sound, we decided to spend vacation money and time that we couldn’t spend this year due to Covid-19, on home-remodeling.

We pulled the trigger, and are very happy about the end result. Whereas tools and stuff were strewn about previously, now they are safely put away inside or behind cabinets. The garage floor is now coated with epoxy for ease of maintenance.

I agonized over a few decision points during this remodeling process. I have documented the entire effort, with pictures showing every step along the way. Hopefully this article will help the next person going through the same process. Continue reading

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Geometric distortion in a triple-monitor setup for MSFS 2020, compared to XPlane 11

Microsoft released its new flight sim 2 days ago, on August 18th. This long-awaited launch got simmer really excited. I moved my flight sim equipment last month to a dedicated room in the basement, now with a triple-monitor setup, in anticipation of this launch. I set up XPlane 11 with these triple monitors, to make sure I got the hang of triple monitors. But all I wanted was the new Microsoft flight sim. I even took this week off from work, so I would not need to choose between work and enjoying the new simulator.

There is, however, one fatal issue, for someone who has gone through the trouble of setting up three 43″ monitors, for the express purpose of re-creating a 180° surround view around the pilot.

At this time, it is not worth sacrificing visual effects and frame rates for two extra side monitors that show greatly distorted views of world objects. Triple-monitor setups are no common. And it’s not clear to me when Asobo will care to fix this problem for a niche market. Until then, the public remains confused as to whether MSFS can be said to “work as is” for triple-monitor setups. There isn’t a source online that compares distorted views in MSFS 2020 against expected, clean views in, say, XP11. Thus this article.
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Wesley-Anny Wedding: Making of a Photo Shoot

This page hosts pictures taken a few weeks prior to the wedding, documenting the photo shoot session Aaron ran. Most of these are my pictures. Some where I make an appearance are taken by Elisha. I suppose you could call those pictures “Making of the Making of a Photo Shoot”. Most of these pictures will be turned into slideshows for use on wedding day. See previous location recon pictures. Continue reading

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Wesley-Anny Wedding: Recon

This page hosts pictures taken a few weeks prior to the wedding, as we checked out the place for lighting and layout. I haven’t used the Nikon D700 for 5 years now. I almost thought it stopped working. But as it turned out, the depth of field preview button was stuck in salt, rendering most buttons and the menu dial on the back unusable. After prying the button lose, I now have a functional camera again. I am surprised that the original lithium-ion batteries continue to hold their charges. I have never had a digital camera last for more than 8 years since I bought my first digital camera, the Sony DSC-F505, some twenty years ago. Every other digital camera I bought ultimately failed electronically. This one just keeps going, despite my soaking it in salt water in my 2009 trip.

I took pictures with the D700 as well as the Fujifilm X10, for comparison. Raw on the D700 and JPEG on the X10. I processed the raw files lightly in Lightroom. Maybe Aaron will bring remote flash on the D day. I think I’ll just go without flash. Some of these pictures will be turned into slideshows for use on wedding day.
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HHAMS in June – HarborFest, Paintball and Field Meeting

This article exists to house pictures that I’ve turned into a YouTube slideshow. June is usually the busiest month for HHAMS. The first week of June is usually the Port Washington HarborFest where we set up a tent to advance awareness of the aerodrome among natives of this town, and to advertise our upcoming paintball event. The paintball event takes place on the second week of June. Then we have our monthly meeting at the field. Continue reading

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2019 HarborFest Model Boat Regatta

Your reporter has been working for at least 6 years now, as a boat retriever at the annual third-grader’s boat regatta. This is an event hosted at the Baxter’s Pond, as part of the Port Washington HarborFest. For the first time, we have photographic coverage of the event this year from a new vantage point, by your reporter and his fellow boat retrievers on kayaks. Continue reading

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HHAMS Flight Tests

This is a short article on flight tests that all new members must pass, before they can fly their model planes without a spotter, at the HHAMS Aerodrome.

It is spring again. Inquisitive visitors are starting to show up at the field. They want to know what it takes to be able to fly solo. Others have gone through the motion of paying the AMA, the county, and the club itself. They have a badge with a “novice” sticker on it. But they can’t fly on their own, and must wait for someone else to stand with them to fly. On the other hand, friendly members are willing to help newcomers learn to fly, and to pass their flight tests. However, not everyone remembers exactly what was involved when they took their flight tests in their days. Thus this article. Continue reading

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What on earth is SAFE® or: How I hacked AR636 from V900 to fly the Freewing Mirage 2000, with SAFE and AS3X

Last week I was faced with a new AR636 challenge. I removed a locked-down AR636 receiver with SAFE® from V900, an E-flite speed plane. I wanted to make it fly my new EDF jet, the Freewing Mirage 2000 Tiger Meet. It would be a breeze to reprogram the AR636 today, presumably, with the advent of AS3X® firmware 2.27 made available in April 2018.

I honestly thought it would take me an hour to reprogram the receiver to fly a delta wing, given the new receiver firmware and upgraded programming apps, since I last looked into the AR636. I thought I would fire up the programming app, and change the aircraft type from normal to elevon. I thought I could then set AS3X rate gains, while keeping SAFE panic and self-leveling. Surely Spektrum documentation had caught up in the last three year, right?

No.

You cannot easily take an AR636 that is pre-programmed with SAFE for aircraft wing type X (say dual aileron), and reconfigure it for another wing type Y (say a delta wing with elevons), without losing SAFE in the process.

No one has done this before. Or at least no one had clearly documented how to do this online before. It took me some time to figure out how to do this. Thus this sequel to the 2016 article. Continue reading

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Anyone can Darth Maul Beat Saber with a double-bladed DIY adapter for Oculus Touch

The title of this article is not exactly wrong grammatically. You really can maul your way through Beat Saber, with a homemade double-bladed saber. And you do this on your Oculus Rift, with your Touch controller.

But first, you must 3D-print adapters for the Touch, and modify a PVC pipe to connect the two adapters. You will also install unofficial Beat Saber mods, in order to record a 3rd person view of your battle. When done, you’ll be able to make a video like the one below yourself, to brag with online. Continue reading

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How to master short-field landings with EDF jets such as the Avanti S

There is a real lack of information online about making successful short-field landings with EDF jets such as the Avanti S. I don’t know whether I should attribute this to search engines being saturated with merchant pages, or blame Facebook for hiding useful content from search engines. Looking for videos on YouTube for the same yields basically nothing. Last time I failed to find useful info, I wrote Learn to Skate the Two-foot Grapevine Analytically, despite being relatively new at ice skating. This time I’ll do the same without reservations on EDF jets and short-field landings, based on my personal experiences.

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