Monday, August 22, 2016

J.Crew Abingdon Briefcase Impressions: Not the Laptop Bag?

For the past while, I thought the Abingdon line of bags at J.Crew was being replaced with the Harwick bags. This assumption came about as I saw the Abingdon Laptop Bag disappear from the American or Canadian J.Crew website. If I remember correctly, the Messenger Bag remained available and there may have even been a duffel bag. It was the Abingdon Laptop Bag that I paid attention to because I liked it enough to purchase one and use it for a while -- I have since Craiglisted it at a substantial discount.
J.Crew Abingdon Laptop Bag: Front
During a recent "trip" to the American J.Crew website, something familiar turned up: an Abingdon bag that looked like my old Laptop Bag. This one, however, was called the Abingdon Briefcase. That's funny because I purchased my Abingdon Laptop Bag with the sole intent of using it as a briefcase. And if you're wondering, I noticed the Abingdon Duffel Bag, Weekender Bag, Messenger Bag, and Travel Kit on the site as well.

Disclaimer: I had not had any firsthand experience with any J.Crew Abingdon Briefcase products when I wrote this piece. Details were quoted from the J.Crew United States website or Canada website in late August 2016. Details on this page are NOT guaranteed for accuracy.

Ikea Allen Key and Wrench Measurements: Trying to estimate?

What size are common Ikea Hex Keys and Wrenches?
Up until yesterday, despite having put together over a dozen pieces of Ikea furniture and having accumulated about a half-dozen keys/wrenches, I did not know -- only a half dozen because I didn't start collecting them until more recently. Why would I want to know anyway, they come "free" with the furniture set every time. And most of them seem to be roughly the same size.

But if I'm putting together so much furniture, why don't I do a bit better and get myself a better tool that doesn't make my fingers ache after assembly? Like a ratchet with changeable sockets? Guess it could also be useful if I threw out all my keys and needed to do some work.
Hex Key and Wrench Collection: Six hex keys, one wrench
Ikea Hex / Allen Key Dimensions: Trying to get an estimate
I've been meaning to do this forever but didn't have a caliper and didn't feel like doing it with a cheap plastic ruler. There was also that thing about having to pay for a ratchet and a collection of heads once I had measurements. So, guess who finally got a caliper and decided to get that ratchet?

Below is a video of measurements being taken of a small collection of hex keys and a wrench that should have come from Ikea. This was my first time using a caliper in years, maybe even a decade, so accuracy is definitely not guaranteed. The last time was in high school or college. Thank goodness for Google. Video and images should be high enough in resolution to be able to read the caliper.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Ikea NITTIO LED bulb Impressions: Only 20 lumens?

Accidentally came across this new Ikea NITTIO LED bulb on the American Ikea website while looking up details on the RYET and LEDARE models. Very attractive product that stood out immediately from the other LED bulbs on the page.
A bulb on a table lamp
Disclaimer: I had not had any firsthand experience with any NITTIO products when I wrote this piece. Details were quoted from the Ikea United States website or Canada website in mid August 2016. Details on this page are NOT guaranteed for accuracy.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

LED Bulbs Review: Ikea RYET & LEDARE 400 lm, RYET 600 lm

A compact fluorescent light bulb decided to crack itself open upon burning out. The glass turned black on one end and a small chip of glass popped off. Good thing I didn't bother to change that bulb until a week after it went out. It had a nice opportunity to air itself out the whole time. That must have been healthy. Not like they're filled with mercury or anything toxic.

This wasn't the first time a CFL broke in the house before, but every previous incident involved preventable idiocy of some kind. Having one blow its own top off was new and not a risk I was willing to take any longer considering that the price of LED bulbs had dropped substantially.

The LED bulbs I bought just before I wrote this review ranged from around CA$ 2.00 to CA$ 7.00 each. I switched the bulbs from CFLs to LEDs in 2013 for one room when they were still CA$ 10.00 to CA$ 25.00 each -- they're all still kicking.
Ikea RYET 400 and 600 lumen LED bulbs
x6 - Ikea RYET LED bulb E26 400 lumen, 2 pack: CA$ 3.99 (US$ 1.99)
x3 - Ikea RYET LED bulb E26 600 lumen, 2 pack: CA$ 6.49 (US$ 3.99)
x1 - Ikea LEDARE LED bulb E26 400 lumen, 1 pack: CA$ 6.99 (US$ 3.99)

Note that the product photo for the LEDARE 400 lumen bulb looked very different on the American Ikea site compared to the one on the Canadian site. However, their names and features appeared to be comparable.

Review: Ikea BEKVÄM Stepladder, 3 steps

Gotta collect them all? I think I now have all the BEKVÄM items: step stool, spice rack, kitchen cart, and stepladder. Didn't mean to, it just sort of happened. The step stool wasn't tall enough for me to be able to reach the ceiling comfortably and I hated using my fiberglass stepladder. Seemed like a good idea to get a more compact but functional ladder at a reasonably low price.
Ikea BEKVAM Stepladder Package
x1 - Ikea BEKVAM Stepladder, 3 steps: US$ 39.99 (CA$ 39.99)

Paid: ~CA$ 39.99

Review: Ikea CALYPSO Ceiling Lamp

Didn't buy this Ikea CALYPSO ceiling lamp recently. Its been around for years and I've only tried to change bulbs twice: the first time, I couldn't figure out how to get the shade off so gave up, and the second time was this past week. This let me check the label and confirm that it was a CALYPSO.
Ikea CALYPSO Ceiling Lamp from years ago
x1 - Ikea CALYPSO Ceiling Lamp: CA$ 34.99

Paid: ~CA$ Something.Something

Friday, August 12, 2016

Dear Diary #22: Dropping shades, Adventures in Craigslist, Hot

Dear Diary,

There's a book I need to look up that's available at the reference library. It's also available at a nearby bookstore. I feel wrong for considering all my options...

Sudden realization from my Craigslist adventures over the past while: I have no problem meeting strangers in random parts of town.

Temperature was over 30 C, didn't want to go out, but needed to return something and pick something else up. Ten minutes out the door: where's my receipt? Oh, right, I didn't bother packing it. Kept going and decided to just keep the thing I was going to return -- less than $10 anyway and transit fare would have been only a few dollars less.

It's been around or over 30 C for the past month, maybe months, and I think I've finally acclimatized to it. So sticky...

Almost dropped a huge glass ceiling lamp shade. Scared the absolute crap out of me. Managed to catch it while on a stepladder.


Friday, August 05, 2016

Ikea SLADDA Bicycle & Parts Impressions: Bikes? At Ikea?

Wait, what? I knew Ikea was expanding their product lines but moving into vehicles was a bit of a surprise. Even more surprising was that they did not appear to be low-cost items. They called it SLADDA...
A bicycle lane somewhere in the world
Disclaimer: I had not had any firsthand experience with any SLADDA products when I wrote this piece. Details were quoted from the Ikea United States website or Canada website in early August 2016. Details on this page are NOT guaranteed for accuracy.

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Dear Diary #21: Her, Vacuums, Drag and Drop, Mercury

Dear Diary,

Watching Her for like the fourth time in the past few weeks. Kind of depressing and messed up movie but beautiful.

Woke up very unpleasantly due to heavy industrial equipment being operated on the neighbor's property. Entire house turned into a subwoofer and had to throw on earplugs. What a disturbing experience. Beats the jackhammering directly out the window a few years back though.

Me (for last 3 years): Complain and mumble out loud about the YouTube description box being too small.
Me (Now): Hey, what are those markings in the corner of that box?
Me (5 seconds later): *Clicks on and drags those markings to expand box size*

Compact fluorescent light bulb decided to not only burn out but blow out where the glass tube met the base on one end. Didn't change the lamp until a week or more after it stopped producing light. Nice to know that mercury likely leaked into the room the entire time. Ya, it's time to swap over to LEDs and never look back.


Saturday, July 23, 2016

Dear Diary #20: College Textbooks, OMG, Sales

Dear Diary,

Waiting for Steam to sync... Again. I can turn it off but I'd rather complain about it?

Fly somehow got into the building with air conditioning on full bast for the past week. And it keeps flying into the wall around me.

Found out the asterisk character is a special character in YouTube descriptions and wasn't showing up like I wanted. Also, "OMG" and "O M G" get automatically bolded for some reason?

Hesitated twice on a 10% off Amazon "sale," then decided to jump at it, and found out it was over again. Hope there's a next time?

Found out that I could right-click the menu that comes up when I right-click. Wow.

Going to try to sell most of my college textbooks. I expect to sell like one out of a dozen and eventually donate the rest but it's worth a shot. Otherwise, I might remember that most of those books cost me over $120 and are now essentially worthless because I got sentimental.