Thursday, November 2, 2017

DIY: Industrial Pipe Coat Rack

Decorating your home with items made from industrial piping seems to be all the rage right now. There are even kits out there so you don't need to sort through all the piping at the home improvement store. However, some of these kits seem to come at a premium. I've also seen these coat racks for around $80 on Etsy. While they do take some time to build, they're VERY EASY to make. You can make your own for around $30. I've included an Amazon link to each part but they seem to be much more than the hardware store.

Parts List:
All piping is 1/2 inch black steel
4 - 1 inch close
4 - Floor flanges
4 - 90 degree Street elbows
4 - End Caps
1- 1x4 - 27" in length (or if you have some reclaimed wood, use that)
1- Can of Stain
8 - 3/4" wood screws 
Optional - Rust-Oleum Oil Rubbed Bronze Metallic Spray paint

Head to the piping section and pick up the following in 1/2 inch black steel pipe:

4: 1 inch (length) nipples
4: Floor flanges
4: Street elbows
4: End Caps

Be sure to get street elbows so you'll have a threading on the outside for the end cap to attach to and a threading on the inside for the nipple to attach to. 

They'll attach together as shown in the following pictures:

You might also notice the piping company, LDR, sells a kit for a single wall hook with all the included mounting hardware.

I ended up buying 4 of these wall hook kits rather than buying each section of piping individually. At the time, they were $7 each. The last time I checked, they were in stock but not displayed in the store. You may have to order online and use the "Pick Up in Store" option.

Then I picked up a 1x4 and headed over to the paint department to pick out a stain. I thought a darker stain would look better so I went with Minwax Espresso stain. (Sorry about the glare)

Before staining, I roughed up the 1x4 with a hand planer and a hammer. You don't need to do this but I thought it would give the rack a worn look. Oh, I also sanded the edges with an orbital sander.

I used two coats of stain on the front and one coat on the back. I forgot to sand in between coats so, I only sanded after the second coat on the front and didn't sand the back...since no one will see it.

After staining and drying I figured out the spacing of the hooks. Measure from the top and bottom to figure out the vertical spacing. Once you find this line, use a yard stick to figure out the horizontal spacing. The spacing works out pretty even. The hooks on the outside are 3 inches apart from the edge. Each flange is 3" in diameter so, I left 3" between each hook which meant 6" between the center of each.

I did not use the provided screws since I wasn't mounting the hook directly into the wall. I used a shorter wood screw and spray painted the tops with the Rust-Oleum Oil Rubbed Bronze Metallic Spray paint. I happened to have this on hand and it was close enough to the color of the piping for me.

My wood was soft enough to screw directly into the wood without drilling. If you use a hardwood or decide to drill, you'll probably just need a small pilot hole. I only used two screws on each hook since I was planning on using the additional holes to secure it to the wall.

This build was very easy, it spanned over 2 days but only involved about an hour of work. If you're looking for a pipe project for your house, this would be the perfect place to start. 


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Monday, May 8, 2017

Loki's (my dog) Favorite Things

A tired dog is a happy dog and usually stays out of trouble. When we first started leaving Loki outside of his crate while we were gone he would chew something to, pillows, hats, a DVD case, Cards Against Humanity????? and anything else he decided might be tasty. To fix this we started giving him something to do while we were gone. We use several different toys/bones but the easiest thing to start with is a Kong Wobbler.

The Kong Wobbler unscrews to fill up and has a hole for dispensing food or treats when your dog knocks it around. It also stays upright as in Weebles Wobble but they don't fall down. We fill it with some or all of his meal if it's that time and it keeps him occupied for 20-30 minutes. It does a wonderful job of keeping him from freaking out when we leave. He can barely contain himself as we walk to the living room to set it down. Here it is in action:

Here are a few other treat/food dispensing toys with good user reviews

If it's not meal time, sometimes we'll give him a little food but we usually give him peanut butter in a dog bone or in the Kong Extreme. We use the extreme version since he is a very strong chewer. It's comes in handy if you have wood floors because it will bounce instead of denting them,

like a bone does. Loki loves it and usually goes back to it after we get home.


These things worked about 99% of the time, after a couple months. The goal is to get your dog to associate their owner leaving the house with something positive. It will take their mind off the fact that you left. Since Loki is a weimaraner his separation anxiety is through the roof. Every now and then we'll come home to something small chewed up. But his behavior is light years ahead of where it used to be.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Make Your Entire Breakfast - With Coffee - In a Single Device

It's tough cooking a large breakfast if you're short on time and don't want a ton of pans to clean. Luckily the Nostalgia Retro Series 3-in-1 Powerful Family Size Breakfast Station makes a complete breakfast with just one appliance. 

 The stylish retro appliance will make cooking breakfast a breeze. Enjoy a cup of coffee with the four-cup coffee maker, then treat the family to a variety of breakfast meats and eggs cooked on the large, non-stick griddle. The multi-functioning toaster holds up to four slices of bread at a time, and is perfect for 7-inch frozen pizzas, hot sandwiches, desserts and more. For added safety, a 30-minute timer is included with automatic shut off. When the meal is done, the griddle and oven tray remove for easy cleanup. 

City dwellers in cramped apartments will also appreciate the space freed up on the counter top.

Check it out in Blue:

Matching Microwave and Clock also available.


Monday, March 13, 2017

Futuristic Baby Products That Are Already Here

All these products will make you realize how rough you had it as a kid...

1. This carseat knows if the baby is buckled properly and will let you know if you leave your baby in the car.
The Evenflo Advanced Embrace DLX with SensorSafe showcases the SensorSafe technology where a smart chest clip and wireless receiver auto-sync to communicate with the driver through a series of gentle tones. The gentle chimes remind the driver when the chest clip is unbuckled during transit. Receiver also reminds the driver that baby is still in seat after arrival at destination. SensorSafe Technology provides peace of mind amid life's distractions. SensorSafe Technology is the sound reminder that can save a life.

2. A device for keeping track of how many words you say to your baby per day.
The Starling processes your verbal engagements telling you just how many words your baby hears. 

3. This gliding seat by 4moms features gentle rocking motions and can be controlled through a smartphone.

The mamaRoo infant seat bounces up and down and sways from side to side, just like parents do when comforting their baby. Select from five unique motions, like car ride and tree swing, and five different speeds. Choose from four built-in sounds or connect it to any MP3 player. The seat reclines to multiple positions to allow baby to lie back and relax or sit up and play. The mamaRoo is now Bluetooth enabled so you can control the motion, sound, speed and volume from your compatible smart device.


4. This potty chair comes with a holder for your iPad.

The iPotty features an activity stand for your iPad.

 5. A sensor which keeps track of your baby's sleeping patterns.
The Mimo sleep tracker uses proprietary which allows you to  see breathing, body position, skin temp, and wake//sleep all in real-time, and stream audio from anywhere

Hatchbaby features built in wifi and tracks your baby's weight as he or she grows, logs diaper changing. It also tracks how much milk your baby drinks with each nursing session. 

7. This sensor will let you know if your baby has peed or pooped.

DDiaper Baby Talking Pee And Poop Alarm comes with a monitor that is safe and non-radiative. It features a mobile app that alerts you when your baby has peed or pooped. The application will also record the pee and poop times and time intervals, which helps you to have a more comprehensive health monitoring to your baby.


 8. A sound system which plays music for your baby in the womb.
The Ritmo Advanced Pregnancy Audio System provides a simple yet sophisticated way to safely deliver sounds, music, and recorded voices from your mp3 device or smartphone directly to your baby in the womb. This system comes with the Safe and Sound Controller, which continually adjusts the music decibel level to provide an added level of safety to the listening experience for your developing child.

9. This bottle warmer gets rid of hot spots and heats your bottle evenly.
The Boon Orb uses steam for heating the baby's bottle and food. 

10. This bluetooth thermometer keeps track of your baby's temperature while they sleep.
The Infanttech Smarttemp thermometer wirelessly monitors your infants body temperature in real time and alerts you if their temperature rises above a threshold. 

 Shameless YouTube video plug


Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Baking Soda Hacks

Easily contain a grease fire on your stove to keep your 
house from burning down and more.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Lightweight Megalite Suitcase - Fight High Baggage Fees

Everyone hates dealing with airline baggage fees. Here is a suitcase that will help keep you from getting ripped off while flying.

The It Megalite suitcase is one of the world's lightest full size TSA-Approved carry on suitcases.

It Megalite suitcase Features:

- Premium quality construction
- Extremely durable and well balanced
- TSA Approved full size carry-on
- Built in expander system adds 25% extra packing capacity
- 10 year warranty

- Push button trolley system easily tucks away
- Lowest recorded price

The 26 in upright spinner will help                               While the 22 inch will make it easier to
you avoid going over the 40 pound                                get your bag into the overhead bin
limit set by most airlines