Sunday, July 13, 2014

Israel and Palestine

Though, it sounds great, a democratic Israel where Palestinians and Jews live peacefully is not going to happen. Personally, I feel that the only solution is the two state option. Palestinians have to recognise and accept Israel and stop the rocket attacks. Israel has to pull back from the occupied territories and help the Palestinians build the infrastructure, help build their own country. Stop the blockades, release the prisoners and stop the collective punishments.

All this tit-for-tat revenge will never end and we have younger generations who hate each other. Israel needs to recognise that World opinion is going against them. Making peace with the neighbours and the Palestinians would be their only way to survive in the long run. I know it is easier said than done and the eagles on both sides would try their best to prevent this from happening.


Sunday, July 06, 2014

Vintage Swiss Army ladies watch

This is one of my eBay bargain finds.

It is a vintage Swiss Army watch. I am not sure about the model but it is a ladies quartz watch. Found out that it has been discontinued by VICTORINOX, owner of the Swiss Army brand. Looking at various websites, I estimate that it from sometime back in the 70s.

When I bought it on eBay it did not have a strap, the crystal was badly scratched and it was not even running. Opening up the rear of the watch was extremely tough and I can see from the scratches on the back that previous owners had faced the same issue.

I finally got it opened and changed the batteries and found out that the watch works fine - keeping perfect time. That's Swiss quality for you.

I then polished the mineral glass crystal and realised that the lume on the watch is really good. Even brighter than most of the newer watches I have.

I then bought a Nato strap on eBay. It was ideal for my wife but she did not really like the watch. My daughter asked if she could have it but the strap was too big for her. Searching further, I finally found an eBay seller in the US who sold replica straps which look exactly like the original. This is the 14mm Gilden Swiss Army Style Nylon & Leather ladies watch band (US $ 20.48 with postage).

Looks great.

Saturday, July 05, 2014

The end of cycling to work

Finally sold off my vintage Falcon bike. I had been cycling to work since last year but several factors meant that I could no longer continue doing so. My wife breaking her leg was the main reason - this meant that I had to send and pick up the kids from school. I often had classes in the evening and I was not comfortable cycling in the dark along the lonely canal paths.

In the end, the bike was left outside without any protection and the shiny mudguards and chain slowly rusted.

In the end, I had to let the bike go. I once had grand ideas about completely restoring it but never got round to doing it.

Next time, I think I would probably go for a brand new bike customised to me.

Till then, it is the end of cycling to work for me.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Replacing my Swatch watch strap

A couple of weeks back, I posted about the easiest way to upgrade the look of your watch - by changing the strap.

Well, why stop at that.

The old aluminium strap on my old Swatch Irony Chrono watch was showing it's age and I decided that it needed a nice new strap.

I had a nice new black leather strap but the problem is that replacing straps on Swatch watches is not straightforward because of their unique and proprietary 3-prong lug design.

So I decided to modify the strap to fit the watch lugs. I used the original strap as a template and cut away the necessary pieces of leather from the strap using my sharp Stanley knife.

I was confident that it would work and it did - a perfect fit.

Friday, May 16, 2014

West Midlands Safari Park - 3rd Visit

This was our 3rd visit to the Safari Park - this time with my sis-in-law and her family.

Not sure why but this time, we saw fewer animals but we had fun.

WARNING: Loads of pictures coming up.

Noah's ark

See how huge that Rhino is


Here you are allowed to feed the animals

You are not allowed to feed the camels. They have a nasty bite. Looks smug, doesn't he or she?

My daughter tackling the wall. Much better than last time.

Hungry Hippo

Two lost kids

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Tired of your old watch: Change the strap

Unlike some crazy watch collectors who have several watches, many people normally have one beater watch which they wear everyday. Most don't even use a watch any more. However, if you do wear watches, there is an easy way to change the look and feel immediately : just by changing the strap. All you need is a new strap and some tools.

That's what I did with my old Sekonda watch. It is a Rolex GMT Master homage with a Pepsi (blue and red) bezel powered by a Miyota quartz movement. 

I bought a blue, red and white Nato strap - Royal Air Force colours, on eBay. I hoped that it would match the colours of the Pepsi bezel. Used the strap spring bar remover tool to remove the strap pins and replaced the bracelet with the new strap.

Now I have a watch that looks and feels totally different. The Nato strap feel much more comfortable as compared to the stainless steel bracelet.

What do you think?

Monday, May 12, 2014

The Royal Enfield Continental GT [Video]

From Ace Cafe, London to Madras Café, Chennai. Nice video.

The specs of this Indian "Cafe racer":

  • 535cc air cooled four-stroke engine/ 30bhp/ five-speed transmission
  • Pirelli tyres
  • Brakes: Single front disc and Brembo caliper
  • Price is around £5,199.


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