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Arts and Entertainment => Hobbies and Photos => Topic started by: SGOS on May 31, 2018, 07:30:48 AM

Title: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on May 31, 2018, 07:30:48 AM
I've built three houses almost entirely on my own, but I have subcontracted out for certain jobs, like excavation, concrete work, masonry, and garage doors.  Hanging the door is no problem, but installing the opener always seemed like a bit of a mystery, and I've used professionals for that.

I bought two openers recently at Lowes along with the installation, which Lowes contracts out, but after a month and a half, the door company never showed up, never called, and did not answer my calls or a call from Lowes on my behalf.  Lowes confided that they have been having problems with this company, and a google search of reviews turned up only one, a 1/5 rating gigging them for not showing up.

I've run into this kind of bullshit before, although there has always been contact and discussion over the phone, and on a frequent occasions I extracted promises to finish the job that week, which turned out to be blatant lies, but this time it was like the company was nothing more than a money laundering front.  Were there even people there?

Usually, I get seeing red pissed when I'm jacked around by a contractor, but the years have told me it isn't worth it.  Either they do it, or I do it.  But letting them lie and manipulate is a game I don't want to play.  I just want someone to hang the God damned door.

So Lowes refunded the installation fee, and I took the hardware home, and I started reading instructions.  I'm actually having fun learning something new, but it's confusing.  It always is the first time and I'm starting day three of fumbling through what should be a four hour job, while making 50 mile round trips to get things that aren't included with the door.  Still it will be cheaper in the end, and I will be extremely satisfied knowing I did it without help from an asshole.

I don't/can't work as fast or as long as I did 30 years ago, but then I'm also more patient.  I expect the second door to take me less than a day, because I spend a lot of time wondering what the directions actually mean, and even they say on occasion, "Your door may require another method for this part of the installation."  In other words, "you need to figure it out on your own," which I manage to take a long time doing.  One such problem took me a day of thinking before I came up with a solution, which required another trip to the hardware store.

Yet, I think it's worth it.  I'd much rather deal with the learning curves and the problem solving than be manipulated by some guy that thinks I can't live without his service.  I used to fuck around with contractors in the hopeless need to have them act responsible.  Not all are like that, of course, but it's a nightmare when you connect with one. 

I just want to hire them.  I don't want to teach them ethics.

In fact, the reason I starting building my own houses, was because the first builder I hired was like that, plus I also had an interest in building myself.  So I fired him and finished the job myself.  I remember standing there being terrified looking at this huge pile of lumber and trying to visualize a house at the end of it.  But I soon figured out you only have to handle one board at a time.  I can handle one board at a time.  Anybody can.  The second house was pure joy building, and my ex still lives in that one, which is now forty years old.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Baruch on May 31, 2018, 07:34:53 AM
Good on you for being self reliant.  Unfortunately, this is why there is a Better Business Bureau, and why only their members should be used for business contacts.  But there is a shortage in the skilled trades, because everyone wants to be a BS artist with a college degree.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on May 31, 2018, 07:50:17 AM
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But there is a shortage in the skilled trades, because everyone wants to be a BS artist with a college degree.
Believe me!  There is no shortage of BS artists in the building trades either.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: PopeyesPappy on May 31, 2018, 09:23:39 AM
If I ever do another garage door opener myself it will probably be a jackshaft design.

(https://i.ytimg.com/vi/Wlssvr9irfQ/hqdefault.jpg)
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on May 31, 2018, 09:58:26 AM
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If I ever do another garage door opener myself it will probably be a jackshaft design.
I'm not familiar with those.  These two are just the cheap basic chain-drive Chamberlains, the kind that are sold at just about every outlet.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on May 31, 2018, 10:05:35 AM
I just looked up "jackshaft opener."  That looks like a good way to do it.  Simple looking installation without a lot of clutter dangling from the ceiling.  Clean and simple.  I like it.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: PopeyesPappy on May 31, 2018, 01:14:42 PM
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That looks like a good way to do it.  Simple looking installation without a lot of clutter dangling from the ceiling.  Clean and simple.  I like it.

That's why I'll be using that kind of opener the next time I do one.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: aitm on May 31, 2018, 05:25:35 PM
I was raised by a man who refused.to show me anything more than once. Pay attention son I'm not doing this again
 I am grateful for that
 Other than todays vehicle motors I do everything myself, unless I just don't want to.
Last year I was fixing.the grand daughter's ceiling fan, she.starts twirling and singing "pop-pop pop- pop, he's the man, if he can't do it no one can." Gotta admit, it was a moment of old fashioned pride.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on June 01, 2018, 01:31:38 AM
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So Lowes refunded the installation fee,

I'm mostly a DIY type myself, but shouldn't Lowe's just have provided another contractor?
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 01, 2018, 08:49:00 AM
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I'm mostly a DIY type myself, but shouldn't Lowe's just have provided another contractor?
Absolutely.  I complained about the contractor, but Lowe's needs to take some responsibility for the lack of service too, especially when people besides myself are being yanked around.  I thought about mentioning this to the reps at Lowes, but they were already aware of the problem, and I didn't see how me telling them to fix this problem at the corporate level would change anything.  It's easier to just do it myself, and my personal advice would likely never be heard by the person in charge, anyway.

If I can speculate, I've been thinking that Lowes has a contract with this company, and like most contracts of this nature, it will eventually expire.  I assume there are provisions for a breach of contract, like failure to provide service in a timely fashion, but maybe not.  I'm guessing that Lowes put this contract up for bid, and offered the agreement to the lowest bidder, so they are obligated not to give the work to other providers.

Actually, Lowes did offer to make arrangements with another provider, since their original provider failed to meet the time requirement (probably such a provision is in the contract).  But I wasn't interested in starting this shit all over again, and I just wanted to get the thing done.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 01, 2018, 09:10:59 AM
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I'm mostly a DIY type myself,
A friend of mine who also built his own house including the foundation and exterior brick wainscoting, jokingly said one time, "I can do as good a work as any contractor, and I can work just as fast.  I just can't to them both at the same time."
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Mr.Obvious on June 04, 2018, 02:32:12 AM
After spending over a year in The Total renovation of our new home: I've become somewhat handier than a lot of my Peers. A lot of things come down to a basic insight and a willingness to dare to actually do something.
That said, i'm no handy Harry. And I wish I'd done Some vacationwork in construction or something, when i was younger.
The garagepoort was handled by a contractor though. I doubt they made any money, as  they first made The door with The wrong specifications. They hung it completely and Noticed halfway. They had to come back the next day, after building it completely as to close an entrance into our home, to take it down and put up The new one.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on June 05, 2018, 04:18:41 AM
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After spending over a year in The Total renovation of our new home: I've become somewhat handier than a lot of my Peers. A lot of things come down to a basic insight and a willingness to dare to actually do something.
That said, i'm no handy Harry. And I wish I'd done Some vacationwork in construction or something, when i was younger.
The garagepoort was handled by a contractor though. I doubt they made any money, as  they first made The door with The wrong specifications. They hung it completely and Noticed halfway. They had to come back the next day, after building it completely as to close an entrance into our home, to take it down and put up The new one.

The value of having a contractor with a well-written contract is that the outcome is the measurement of completion.  When I DIY it myself and fail, I REALLY find it awkward to sue myself.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 09, 2018, 08:15:12 AM
I'm nearing the end of my learning curve, and I won't go into details of why this has taken so long, but there is one strange thing that I really don't like in the design of apparently all newer garage door openers.  There is a safety feature which must be hooked up to reverse the direction of the door if an obstruction, (like a little kid) is in the way.  I know it's a safety issue and it's been mandated by Federal law that this must be part of the system, but it's a very poor design where the beam sensors are designed to take up an inordinate amount of space on the floor, stick almost a foot out from the wall, and will eventually be kicked and broken if not just kicked off the door.  They merely clamp on into place on the rails of the door, and are not secured with screws.

While I haven't tried the doors yet, I've been told all doors already include a pressure sensitive reversing feature when the door hits something, anyway.  I think the sensitivity can be adjusted with this feature,  too, but I haven't located that adjustment on my opener.  The additional beam sensor must be installed on the floor, so kids, dogs, cats, and cars could easily straddle the beam and fail to activate the reversal if it's needed.

It sounds like Federally mandated gas cans.  Bought one lately?  Every year they try to design them safer, but they are becoming less useable.  Yeah, if you can't get the gas out, they are probably safer, but something seems impractical about this.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: fencerider on June 10, 2018, 12:13:03 AM
I happen to know someone that does garage doors, but he is here in the Los Angeles area.


I also heard that a good rating by better business bureau is worthless. It was started by a shifty person trying to make a quick buck. If you are not a paying member of the BBB you automatically have a bad rating. and if you are one of the biggest financial supporters you automatically have a good rating. has about as much value as the phrase FDA approved ; just another cigarette paper
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 10, 2018, 12:58:57 AM
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I also heard that a good rating by better business bureau is worthless. It was started by a shifty person trying to make a quick buck. If you are not a paying member of the BBB you automatically have a bad rating. and if you are one of the biggest financial supporters you automatically have a good rating. has about as much value as the phrase FDA approved ; just another cigarette paper
This actually doesn't surprise me at all, what with the same thing happening with Moody's and Standard and Poor's simply selling ratings on stocks and bonds along with the fake ratings I've seen for all sorts of stuff on the Internet, while the Consumer Protection Agency along with other originally good ideas put forth by politicians to rounds of self applause while patting themselves on the back have been underfunded and reorganized into helpless eunuchs by the same politicians that created them.  Gas cans and safety devices are probably mandated on certain products based on campaign contributions by manufacturers of those devices.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 10, 2018, 08:15:24 AM
One of the funky things I've found about garage doors and openers is that the doors are assumed to be substandard in construction, and they require reinforcements.  I wasted a lot of time questioning whether this could be true.  Why would they build them this way, and if it is true, why don't places like Lowes sell the required reinforcements?  One Utube video went so far as to say, "Never use the door bracket that comes with the opener.  It will not hold."  That's a very sweeping claim.

As you might guess, the truth is that some doors are strong enough to withstand the stress of the opener, and some are strong enough not to require every one of the reinforcements.  But how do you know which door you have?  Some of the things are intuitive, and the claim that the door bracket in the opener kit should never be used was one that stopped my installation for several days while I worried over the answer and started looking for the necessary parts.  If I could have gone out an bought one locally, I would have just done it even if it amounted to overkill.

Then I thought of maybe just looking up an installer and asking if he could sell me the parts.  Surely, a guy like that would have the things on hand.  So I looked one up and paid him a visit, a guy that did only one thing; Install garage doors.  But it was an 80 mile round trip with my gas guzzling pickup because I was going to need a part that was 8 ft long, so I made a list of big city shopping to help justify the trip.  Turns out, the guy would not only sell me parts, but he was an encyclopedia of information, willing to share, and this is where things came together for me.

First, the door bracket.  I was right in questioning the utube information about buying a different one.  The door guy asked me if the center of my doors had a vertical style with a thin piece of sheet metal sandwiched in the style.  He showed me a floor sample of a door identical to mine.  The rest of the door was nothing buy insulating foam fluff with an aluminum outside facing.  He said a larger bracket would be better, but not necessary in that door as I suspected.

Second, he said, the most important reinforcement was either 8 feet of angle iron to cover the top edge of the door, or better yet a door strut, which everyone may have noticed on most garage doors and wondered what it was there for.  It's just a piece of folded over galvanized sheet metal that doesn't look like it serves a purpose.  He sold me two struts for $25 each and gave me the proper self threading screws to attach them.  He also corrected my assumptions about where to place the screws.  Incidentally, Amazon was selling this same strut for $499, which was more than the door opener itself.  Sheesh!

I told him I'd been on this project for a week and suggested it was probably a four hour job.  Again he corrected me, and said he calculates that it takes his crew 1 hour for just an opener, and we both had a good laugh over that misconception.  It was a worth while trip, and the most important part of my learning curve.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on June 11, 2018, 04:19:15 AM
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I'm nearing the end of my learning curve, and I won't go into details of why this has taken so long, but there is one strange thing that I really don't like in the design of apparently all newer garage door openers.  There is a safety feature which must be hooked up to reverse the direction of the door if an obstruction, (like a little kid) is in the way.  I know it's a safety issue and it's been mandated by Federal law that this must be part of the system, but it's a very poor design where the beam sensors are designed to take up an inordinate amount of space on the floor, stick almost a foot out from the wall, and will eventually be kicked and broken if not just kicked off the door.  They merely clamp on into place on the rails of the door, and are not secured with screws.

While I haven't tried the doors yet, I've been told all doors already include a pressure sensitive reversing feature when the door hits something, anyway.  I think the sensitivity can be adjusted with this feature,  too, but I haven't located that adjustment on my opener.  The additional beam sensor must be installed on the floor, so kids, dogs, cats, and cars could easily straddle the beam and fail to activate the reversal if it's needed.

It sounds like Federally mandated gas cans.  Bought one lately?  Every year they try to design them safer, but they are becoming less useable.  Yeah, if you can't get the gas out, they are probably safer, but something seems impractical about this.

My garage door sensors (30 years old) are small and efficient.  About the size of an extension cord plug.  And they work perfectly.  If I stick my foot in there, the door reverses to open.  You might want to look at the attachments.  Perhaps the installer failed to finish that part.

I agree with you about gas cans and some other safety devices.  My Very Safe Gas Can is hard to use (but not yet impossible).  It is harder to fill than empty.

And here is one for you.  I sometimes get serious finger cramps after weeding for a couple hours.  The last time, I could not actually open my bottle of aspirin.  So I stabbed it to death until 2 pills surrendered and fell out.  Given that there are no children here, and that stabbing the container in frustration with a big damn knife was dangerous, what was the child-proof bottle protecting?

I appreciate the Govt protecting me from real dangers, but the definition of "protection" could be discussed more.  I want to be safe from loose lawn-mower blades, but I don't need excessive protection from my aspirin. 
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Baruch on June 11, 2018, 06:47:04 AM
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My garage door sensors (30 years old) are small and efficient.  About the size of an extension cord plug.  And they work perfectly.  If I stick my foot in there, the door reverses to open.  You might want to look at the attachments.  Perhaps the installer failed to finish that part.

I agree with you about gas cans and some other safety devices.  My Very Safe Gas Can is hard to use (but not yet impossible).  It is harder to fill than empty.

And here is one for you.  I sometimes get serious finger cramps after weeding for a couple hours.  The last time, I could not actually open my bottle of aspirin.  So I stabbed it to death until 2 pills surrendered and fell out.  Given that there are no children here, and that stabbing the container in frustration with a big damn knife was dangerous, what was the child-proof bottle protecting?

I appreciate the Govt protecting me from real dangers, but the definition of "protection" could be discussed more.  I want to be safe from loose lawn-mower blades, but I don't need excessive protection from my aspirin.

Violate the law by transferring some pills to a pill box.  Your frustrated behavior you described, was truly Cavebear ;-)
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 11, 2018, 08:02:35 AM
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My garage door sensors (30 years old) are small and efficient.  About the size of an extension cord plug.  And they work perfectly.  If I stick my foot in there, the door reverses to open.  You might want to look at the attachments.  Perhaps the installer failed to finish that part. 
I'm the installer, and they are in place, but not wired.  I will wire them in after I buy some wire covers to tidy the installation up to my satisfaction.  And when I said they stuck out a foot, that was a guess.  I measured them, and it's only 7 1/2 inches, but still enough in the path to get kicked when walking around the car.

I visited a forum dedicated to sensors, and one guy asked how to deactivate them, so they wouldn't be a nuisance.  A couple of guys admitted they installed them in the ceiling next to the opener drive, so they could effectively be taken out of the loop and act as if they weren't there.  Most of the responses were in the form of lectures about safety or horror stories about watching garage doors crush steel Radio Flyer wagons that were left in the way.  Then other responders started calling bullshit because other safety features wouldn't allow that, and the whole thing started a flame war, until finally one guy stepped in and suggested they simply answer the guy's question.  I didn't register so I couldn't jump in, but I have to admit, the place seemed like home.  Well, like this place, anyway.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on June 11, 2018, 08:56:38 AM
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I'm the installer, and they are in place, but not wired.  I will wire them in after I buy some wire covers to tidy the installation up to my satisfaction.  And when I said they stuck out a foot, that was a guess.  I measured them, and it's only 7 1/2 inches, but still enough in the path to get kicked when walking around the car.

I visited a forum dedicated to sensors, and one guy asked how to deactivate them, so they wouldn't be a nuisance.  A couple of guys admitted they installed them in the ceiling next to the opener drive, so they could effectively be taken out of the loop and act as if they weren't there.  Most of the responses were in the form of lectures about safety or horror stories about watching garage doors crush steel Radio Flyer wagons that were left in the way.  Then other responders started calling bullshit because other safety features wouldn't allow that, and the whole thing started a flame war, until finally one guy stepped in and suggested they simply answer the guy's question.  I didn't register so I couldn't jump in, but I have to admit, the place seemed like home.  Well, like this place, anyway.

Ah, nothing like getting involved in a flame war just for seeking information!  I run into that often enough.

Yes, of course you want the sensors at the bottom.  That's where they matter.  And there is no harm and possibly some good in having them.   Now, mine are about 2" inside the spot where the door actually closes.  As long as the door itself doesn't trigger the door reversal, it's fine.  I wouldn't think they should be much more inside the door than that or you might defeat the purpose. 

I expect the trickiest part will be getting both sensors to "see" each other.  Unless things have changed, you will have a minor light beam emitting from one side and read by the other.  I didn't install my own, but I watched the guy who did it, and he had to fuss with the sending and receiver sensors a bit before they connected.  And the first time he closed the door, the closing of the door moved them slightly and he had to re-adjust.

Or for all I know, they are wifi now and don't care.

But if this helped any, I will be pleased.  I kind of view this site as "atheists talking to each other and helping one another on anything"

Let us know how the garage door sensors work.  And if they don't, I'll take close-up pictures of mine in case that helps.

Cavebear
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 11, 2018, 09:19:26 AM
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Ah, nothing like getting involved in a flame war just for seeking information!  I run into that often enough.

Let us know how the garage door sensors work.  And if they don't, I'll take close-up pictures of mine in case that helps.
I have no doubt that they will work.  I notice that the bracket that attaches them to the door tracks is designed so the beams can be swiveled to meet, and then tightened in that position with a wing nut, which I thought would require some fussing over before I even saw how they were designed to accommodate the necessary fussing.  And the brackets do clamp quite tightly to the tracks, even without provisions for some actual fasteners, but are still vulnerable to getting bumped.  There is a provision to screw them to the wall, but for me, that puts the door tracks right in the middle of the beam.

This is one of those things I can stop thinking about for now, and as often happens, a solution might pop into my head when I'm not focused on it.  I've had that happen twice in the last week with other problems in the installation.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on June 11, 2018, 09:24:21 AM
Well, I'm glad to see they still operate as they used to and it will just take some adjustments.  I once accidentally kicked one and set it out of place, but it wasn't hard to get it aimed right again.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 11, 2018, 12:11:52 PM
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And here is one for you.  I sometimes get serious finger cramps after weeding for a couple hours.  The last time, I could not actually open my bottle of aspirin.  So I stabbed it to death until 2 pills surrendered and fell out.   
In the last few years, I've had flare ups of something called pseudo gout, which I had never heard of but is an actual thing.  It can attack ankles, knees, and wrists.  It is very painful and can last for weeks if untreated.  A few days ago, one of those started, but they start so gently that they seem like one of those kinks that's going to work itself out in an hour, but instead they slowly get worse instead of better, until they get worse really fast.  By that time know what it is, and you can't sleep because of the pain, and whatever got hit becomes an immobilized and useless organ.  I couldn't open a jar, and it was one with a loose lid too.  I wrapped it in a towel and jammed a kitchen drawer closed on it, so I could use my good hand to unscrew the lid, and I felt proud of myself for that.

I've found that the standard course of prednisone, which takes about a week, will knock it out in short order.  After I couldn't open the jar yesterday, I started a course of prednisone, which I keep on hand expressly for these attacks, and two hours later I was working in the garage, and then I mowed the lawn, all in what I would call a comfortable physical state.  It's almost completely gone today.  One time they gave me a shot of dexamethasone, which is the stuff they give to immobilized mountain climbers suffering from cerebral and pulmonary bleeding.  They lovingly call it dex:  "Give him a shot of dex, and maybe we can get him down out of the death zone into some air with oxygen in it."  It worked fast too, and as a bounus, I got higher than a kite for three days.  I went to see Dr. Strange at the theater three times, and thought it was the best film ever made in Hollywood.  I was openly jabbering with strangers who seemed quite responsive too.  At least I thought they were, but who knows?
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on June 11, 2018, 12:59:11 PM
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In the last few years, I've had flare ups of something called pseudo gout, which I had never heard of but is an actual thing.  It can attack ankles, knees, and wrists.  It is very painful and can last for weeks if untreated.  A few days ago, one of those started, but they start so gently that they seem like one of those kinks that's going to work itself out in an hour, but instead they slowly get worse instead of better, until they get worse really fast.  By that time know what it is, and you can't sleep because of the pain, and whatever got hit becomes an immobilized and useless organ.  I couldn't open a jar, and it was one with a loose lid too.  I wrapped it in a towel and jammed a kitchen drawer closed on it, so I could use my good hand to unscrew the lid, and I felt proud of myself for that.

I've found that the standard course of prednisone, which takes about a week, will knock it out in short order.  After I couldn't open the jar yesterday, I started a course of prednisone, which I keep on hand expressly for these attacks, and two hours later I was working in the garage, and then I mowed the lawn, all in what I would call a comfortable physical state.  It's almost completely gone today.  One time they gave me a shot of dexamethasone, which is the stuff they give to immobilized mountain climbers suffering from cerebral and pulmonary bleeding.  They lovingly call it dex:  "Give him a shot of dex, and maybe we can get him down out of the death zone into some air with oxygen in it."  It worked fast too, and as a bounus, I got higher than a kite for three days.  I went to see Dr. Strange at the theater three times, and thought it was the best film ever made in Hollywood.  I was openly jabbering with strangers who seemed quite responsive too.  At least I thought they were, but who knows?

Well, I suspect you posted this in the wrong thread, but you are talking straight to me about the problems and solutions, so what the heck...

In my early job year, I had to unload tires off a truck throwing them off our shoulders to roll into the warehouse.  For 6 months, I had 3 hot dogs and drank a quart of Gatorade for lunch,

But when we had to reload tires, we 5 guys had to monkey-climb up the steel stacks and toss them down.  And it was HOT in there in Summer.  I finally fell once 20' (onto a pile of tires) and got fired for being "inept".  But we didn't use drugs, I just wanted to mention that. 

But what I DID do using drugs was haul huge pallets of antifreeze and motor oil from a department store loading dock  to the far end of the store to the auto department.  And that is where the drugs came in.  My boss gave me a few "White Crosses" (a mild amphetimine) and OH BOY I could haul that pallet then and unload it onto the shelves.  I babbled...

"I was openly jabbering with strangers who seemed quite responsive too.  At least I thought they were, but who knows? "  THe good part was that my boss was a bad dealer and liked the pills himself, so I bought them from him is 50 packs for $10 and sold them back to him $1 each.  LOL, I made a profit.  And the day I quit was the last pill like that I ever took.  I'm completely unaddictable.

But I did suffer gout or pseudo-gout a few times.  So I understand what you are saying (took the long way around the barn didn't I).  I took Ibuprofen under DR orders.  The first attack was horrible.  My toe was so sensitive I couldn't sleep and I was away on travel, at a conference I was addressing in part, so I couldn't just call in sick.    After my presentation, I was in so much misery, the hotel drove me to an emergency clinic at 2 am.

Keep in mind I was in Mormon territory.  The DOCTOR told me I had sinned!  I'm not joking.  He said it was gout caused by SIN of drinking beer.  And there I was thinking that "gout" was one of those made-up conditions from medieval times and the DOCTOR was telling me I had SINNED!  And I was in pain, away from home at a conference I didn't want to attend (out in the middle of NOWHERE,  where you couln't even BUY beer BTW), and I had SINNED...

It was altogether unreal...  You can't take aspirin when you are having an attack of gout (its a real thing, I learned later) because
acetylsalicylic acid" actually crystilizes into your joints which is exactly what "gout" is (minerl crytals in the joints) !  But Ibuprofen doesn't, so I could take that.

And when I got back to the office and mentioned the episode to a couple of co-workers, word got around.  All sorts of fine upstanding people from all over the agency told my had had gout attacks too (some almost every year)   Our physical experiences were nearly identical.  Painful big toe, sometimes even an ankle.  Ibuprofen (our wonder drug). And limping around for days...

I had 2 more attacks of gout in the following year.  They say, once is common, but if it is twice it is forever.  I had it 3 times in 1982, and never since.  I never do fit a pattern, LOL! 



Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Baruch on June 11, 2018, 01:06:03 PM
My father developed gout, late in life, from eating shellfish.  He loved cold boiled shrimp.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 29, 2018, 09:40:21 AM
I finished the opener installation a week ago, and found a handy addon for $39 at Amazon.  It's a light switch than can be operated manually or from the garage door remote in your car.  I live in the woods and at night my porch is so dark I have to feel to find the keyhole in the door, so I was looking for some way to turn on the porch lights from the driveway.

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/515HmeKy63L._SX425_.jpg)

This gadget is made by Liftmaster, but also works with my Chamberlain Openers.  The description at both Amazon and the Liftmaster site says it must be done through your internet wi fi with a special bridge that connects your car's remote or the smart phone in your pocket to gadgets you want to turn on and off in your house.  Nice I suppose, but way more than I wanted.  But one user review out of the hundreds at Amazon said this wi fi crap is not necessary and the switch can be activated using no extra hardware beyond your car's remote.  If you want to use your smart phone, you have to go with the extra links and bridges.

It will work with the extra buttons on your remote, or if you want, you can link the switch to the door opener light that comes on when the doors are activated.  This was my choice.  Just one button, and anything you turned on will turn off automatically in 12 minutes, enough time to get your groceries out of the trunk and into the house.  Or you can turn the light off when you get in the house if you don't want to let it happen automatically.   If you activate the switch manually, it stays on until you turn it off.

And none of this is mentioned in the product description.  My garage door guru even thought you needed to do the whole wi fi internet and extra hardware crap to get it to work, but it's not that complicated or necessary.  I don't know why they fail to explain the simpler alternative in their literature.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 29, 2018, 09:46:46 AM
I just ordered another switch to turn the outside garage lights on.  It's not totally necessary, but kind of cool.  I can't think of anything else I want to turn on from my car, so I guess that will be it for this garage door project.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Johan on June 29, 2018, 05:15:15 PM
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A couple of guys admitted they installed them in the ceiling next to the opener drive, so they could effectively be taken out of the loop and act as if they weren't there. 
I would not connect or operate a garage door opener unless the sensors were installed correctly and working. They are a fail safe, as in if they fail, the opener will not lower the door. The auto-reverse feature is not a fail safe so the door will lower whether it works or not.

Yep the risk is small, but there is simply no valid reason to take the risk IMO. Then again I'm probably the only guy in the state who actually uses the seat belt when I mow on my John Deere.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on June 29, 2018, 05:37:33 PM
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I would not connect or operate a garage door opener unless the sensors were installed correctly and working. They are a fail safe, as in if they fail, the opener will not lower the door. The auto-reverse feature is not a fail safe so the door will lower whether it works or not.

Yep the risk is small, but there is simply no valid reason to take the risk IMO. Then again I'm probably the only guy in the state who actually uses the seat belt when I mow on my John Deere.
I think you are right, and most people in that discussion I visited would agree with you.  I did consider some of the ways around it for a short time, but in the end, I thought it was better to make use of the extra safety.  So far I haven't kicked one of the sensors, but lining them up is very easy.  Basically, if they looked lined up, they are.  After I installed them, no extra adjustments were necessary.  The only thing I don't care for, and this is really minor, is that when I walk through an open door, it activates the opener light, which in turn activates the 6 lights on my porch.  And when I'm working in the garage or yard, I walk through opened doors of the garage all the time, so my porch lights can be going full tilt in the middle of the day.  They are LED lights, so I'm not using much electricity.  But I never realized how much I walk through open garage doors until I put in those sensors.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on July 02, 2018, 12:29:25 AM
Quite frankly, I'm keeping my house clear of any controls connected to the internet.  If it isn't part of The-Internet-Of-Things, it can't be hacked. 
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Johan on July 03, 2018, 07:40:27 PM
Why does the opener light make the porch lights go on? Are they wired together somehow?
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on July 03, 2018, 08:28:53 PM
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Why does the opener light make the porch lights go on? Are they wired together somehow?
The opener unit light is connected to the porch light switch by a radio signal.  There are two ways sync the opener to the porch lights.  One is through the opener unit the way I did.  The other is to program one of the buttons on the remote to activate the lights so that you press one button to open the door and another to turn on the lights.  I would have had a slight preference for that method, but there is one glitch.  One of my cars comes with an onboard remote system called HomeLink, and it's easy to pair the opener button with your remote's button, but the button that activates the light doesn't pair with the on board remote. 

If you want your on board remote to be fully functional in that way, you have to buy extra hardware called a "HomeLink gateway" which allows the light switch to get a useable signal through your home's wi fi.  Then you can use your computer to set up the pairing.  Once that is done, you don't need your computer on, but you do need to have your wi fi on.  I didn't want to go through the extra steps and buy extra software.  Pairing the porch light switch to the motor unit's light avoided that.  It just seemed simpler and cheaper with less parts and paths.

If you use the wi fi to transfer the radio signal, you can open the door or turn on the lights from your smart phone, or someone else's computer when you are on vacation in the Ukraine, or on a Pacific Island.  But I didn't need that.  I can't imagine having to do that.  It's cool, but not something I think I will need at this point.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on July 04, 2018, 12:00:25 AM
I am WAY behind the tech curve.  I actually press a button next to the garage door or one in the car to make the garage door open.  I tend to like rather "stupid" buttons.  They never mistake my commands.

My refrigerator doesn't know what is inside it, my dishwasher does not alert me when it is done, the washer does its cycle without advising me, and the dryer shuts of automatically when it is done.  I have a cordless phone attached to NoMoRoBo so scammers get cut off the first ring.  I don't have a smart phone.  I don't need one.  The last call I WANTED to receive was 3 months ago.  I wouldn't have a phone at all, but sometimes I need to call tech support for some weird problem they caused themselves and need to help them fix it.

I sometimes like the idea of an AI speaker in the house, and I may give in to that soon.  Since I live alone and don't talk to myself much, I probably wouldn't trigger an AI by accident.  But just going to the desktop or laptop when I have a question isn't exactly a massive effort.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on July 04, 2018, 07:20:42 AM
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I am WAY behind the tech curve.  I actually press a button next to the garage door or one in the car to make the garage door open.  I tend to like rather "stupid" buttons.  They never mistake my commands.

My refrigerator doesn't know what is inside it, my dishwasher does not alert me when it is done, the washer does its cycle without advising me, and the dryer shuts of automatically when it is done.  I have a cordless phone attached to NoMoRoBo so scammers get cut off the first ring.  I don't have a smart phone.  I don't need one.  The last call I WANTED to receive was 3 months ago.  I wouldn't have a phone at all, but sometimes I need to call tech support for some weird problem they caused themselves and need to help them fix it.

I sometimes like the idea of an AI speaker in the house, and I may give in to that soon.  Since I live alone and don't talk to myself much, I probably wouldn't trigger an AI by accident.  But just going to the desktop or laptop when I have a question isn't exactly a massive effort.
I'm like that too.  I tend to prefer dedicated technology, rather than cool off shoots and recombinations of existing technology.  I like nice cameras that produce high resolution.  I don't need to call friends with my camera.  It does what I want.  If I need to call someone, I have a phone too. 

But you can combine a camera and phone and get a smart phone, which costs more than a much higher quality camera and a phone.  The picture quality isn't as good, but it's a phone that takes pictures.  It's cool, I guess.  My garage door opener opens my door and it does it without having to first access my home computer.  I think that's really cool.  But I do need my computer for other things, and I think that's cool too.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Johan on July 04, 2018, 10:12:26 AM
Human nature is endlessly fascinating.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Baruch on July 04, 2018, 10:39:17 AM
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Human nature is endlessly fascinating.

But is that behavior, mis-behavior or both?  And nature usually means "no nurture" in the "nature vs nurture" debate.  I have to transcend "heads vs tails" and call "both".  Humans do have a biological nature, that they have no choice in.  But people are much more complicated than flat worms.  Our behavior is much bigger than mere instinct.  That non-instinct part we call personality and culture.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on July 09, 2018, 04:29:53 AM
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I'm like that too.  I tend to prefer dedicated technology, rather than cool off shoots and recombinations of existing technology.  I like nice cameras that produce high resolution.  I don't need to call friends with my camera.  It does what I want.  If I need to call someone, I have a phone too. 

But you can combine a camera and phone and get a smart phone, which costs more than a much higher quality camera and a phone.  The picture quality isn't as good, but it's a phone that takes pictures.  It's cool, I guess.  My garage door opener opens my door and it does it without having to first access my home computer.  I think that's really cool.  But I do need my computer for other things, and I think that's cool too.

I'm with you here.

I love watching Alton Brown cook on "Good Eats", and he hates single purpose gadgets.  And I love them.  I have a cordless phone that doesn't take pictures.  I have a camera that doesn't make phone calls.  My refrigerator has no idea what is in it.  My M/W only does what I tell it to do.  My thermostat in not a programmable type; I set it as I please.  My slight surrender is the TV remote, but even then, I don't use the "smart" control but rather the individual remotes.  And my TV is not "internet-ready".    *I* control it.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: SGOS on July 09, 2018, 06:49:40 AM
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I'm with you here.
How about washing machines with 5 dials allowing combinations of however many settings that is.  I had to replace a washing machine a few years ago.  I bought the cheapest one in the store, because I don't even know what some of those extra setting are for.  Mine came with 3 settings for the size of the wash, and a cold/warm/hot control.  I think it cost $200.  For $800, I could have got one that had 50 settings I didn't need.  Both machines swirl and spin, which I consider the critical features.  This isn't about me being cheap either.  It's more about simplicity and function.
Title: Re: Adventures in Garage Door Openers
Post by: Cavebear on July 09, 2018, 07:43:42 AM
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How about washing machines with 5 dials allowing combinations of however many settings that is.  I had to replace a washing machine a few years ago.  I bought the cheapest one in the store, because I don't even know what some of those extra setting are for.  Mine came with 3 settings for the size of the wash, and a cold/warm/hot control.  I think it cost $200.  For $800, I could have got one that had 50 settings I didn't need.  Both machines swirl and spin, which I consider the critical features.  This isn't about me being cheap either.  It's more about simplicity and function.

I always go with the ratings in Consumer Reports magazine.  I can't test a dozen washing machines when I need one.  But if one works well for cheaper cost  and no features I don't need, I go that way.  I tend to go for the "thing" that is reliable, works well, and doesn't have features I don't need.  The more features something has, the more likely one is to fail and may affect basic functions.