Tag Archives: how to

Tackling DIY A/C Repair

The dash air conditioning in our motorhome was broken and I saw there was a leak from the fitting going into the compressor. Everyone I called to fix it wanted to remove the 40 foot lines from the RV and take them to a shop to install the new fittings. This would have cost $400-500 dollars so I decided to fix the connector myself with the mastercool hyrda-krimp a/c crimping tool.

I needed to upgrade to the $300 dollar crimping tool because I wanted to do the work in the engine bay and not at a vise, but the cheaper ones work just as well.

The $140 dollar crimping tool:
http://amzn.to/2aiL0rZ
My manifold gauge:
http://amzn.to/29KXg8w
The more expensive crimping tool I bought:
http://amzn.to/29Kr2V8

Book Review: The Simple Path to Wealth by Jim Collins

SPW cover final

We’re excited to announce that our friend Jim Collins has just published a book based on his wildly successful “Stock Series” articles.  We received a preview copy of the book a few weeks ago and Jim asked us if we could write a “blurb” for promotional material.  We replied:

“Jim Collins has the gift of making boring financial concepts funny and interesting. He makes complicated subjects simple and easy to understand. The Simple Path to Wealth is the first book I recommend to people curious about financial independence.”

And we mean every word of it. There’s a reason why Lauren and I decided to drive 2500 miles to interview Jim back in 2014. It’s because the writing style on his blog made investing in the stock market seem more accessible for the average person. That’s not an easy task.

Many of you email us asking for investment advice and 8 times out of 10 we direct you to Jim’s blog.  “The Simple Path to Wealth” is now our go-to recommendation for people interested in investing and financial independence as it’s an expanded and polished version of his blog.

But there’s a reason why we trust Jim’s opinion before anyone else’s.
He was doing this stuff before it was cool.

He achieved financial independence before the internet was even around! He didn’t have books, blogs, and videos as a blueprint. He just wanted “F-you money” so he could live life on his own terms and figured it out.

As an investor of over 40 years and financially independent for 25, I think we have a lot to learn from him. I hope you agree 🙂

Here is a link to the series of videos we filmed with him:
https://goo.gl/7maKWd

And here’s a link where you can buy the book (amazon affiliate):

http://amzn.to/1UUjMJa

DIY “Chorreador de Café” | Pre-Hipster Pour Over Coffee Maker

In just about every kitchen in Costa Rica you’ll find a Chorreador de Café. It’s a simple pour over coffee maker that’s been used for hundreds of years.

They come in many different shapes and sizes, but I wanted a compact one for our upcoming RV trip. It fits nicely in a drawer and makes one cup of coffee at a time.

Stay tuned for the video of our first cup in the morning 🙂

Mike Makes a Luxo Style Desk Lamp (FINISHED)

Well it’s finished! I made a balanced arm desk lamp completely out of wood (except for the salvaged brass shade). It took WAY too long, but I’m very pleased with the results.

I wanted to make it out of mahogany but in a last ditch effort to finish, I used cheap plywood instead. With stain and lacquer it still looks classy!

Download the Sketchup/SVG Files

Mike Makes a Contemporary (kind of) Triangle Bench

Our church’s high school group needed some benches for their meeting area. I decided to copy Louis Lim’s ’round and round’ contemporary bench design, somewhat successfully.

I had trouble figuring out how to measure the “skin” that goes around the base of the triangle. I think I was trying to make a “truncated cylinder” but I couldn’t quite get the dimensions right. Ultimately trial and error prevailed.

Louis Lim (Original Design) – http://www.makingworks.com/

UPDATE: One of our viewers Joseph Malovich figured out the math for us in Solidworks.  Here is his design.  Thanks Joseph!

180 bench mike and lauren

bench_1

mike makes contemporary bench

 

 

 

Mike Makes Toy Wood Tools!

This weekend we’re on mission to make an Instagram photo for Lauren. Yesterday she asked me to make a small wood toy tool set and promised she’d help in the shop.

To my surprise she stayed all day! The wood tools turned out great. We made a saw, hammer, screwdriver, square, wrench and tool box. The beeswax and mineral oil finish is both non-toxic and smooth. I will definitely be using it for future projects.

Like Lauren’s Instagram Photo!
https://goo.gl/GyxBvY

Mike Makes a Cable Ramp for Power Cords

I now have a table saw, router table, and X-Carve all in the middle of my shop. Up until now, I’ve just run extension cords whenever I needed power. Today I changed that!

I copied the commercially available cable ramp/cord management design, but I made it out of wood. I could have done everything on the table saw, but I wanted to experiment with the X-Carve so I made them modular.

Now I can add or subtract as many pieces as I want to change the length. It turned out great!

X-Carve Info: http://www.inventables.com

Zero to 10K Subscribers – How Did We Get Here?

I want to talk about starting a YouTube channel with zero subscribers. In the video I discuss how we got our first thousand subscribers and how it’s taken off exponentially since then. We’ll take a look at our analytics and see how much money you can make on YouTube, how to get views in the very beginning, and how become suggested more often on the “what to watch” page.

The growth of our channel has been incredible, but it’s neither the fastest nor the slowest I’ve witnessed. I think our results are very repeatable if you’re just starting on YouTube. We would love to go full time, and we have a very loose plan to do that. But even if that never happens, we’ve consider everything so far a huge success.