Daily Archives: February 2, 2015

Yes, It was that Good . . .

It hardly got into the 50’s today, but at least it didn’t rain. So there is that. But it pretty much killed any thing I wanted to do outside. And tomorrow should about the same, but with rain.

But that did give me a chance to play with a couple of my other new toys. I picked them up at Brandi’s on Saturday, but today was the first chance I had to check them out.

The first one was a new DashCam.

A118 DashCam

A118 Full HD 1080P Car DVR Dash Camera

I’ve been wanting one for a while, and had checked out quite a few of them, but this one came out on top, and getting to play with it showed me why.

It’s very small, less than 3 inches long, and only about an inch and a half wide. But it records in full HD 1080p video, and has a built-in mic that can be turned on or off. And it’s only $80.

It will record about  5 hours on a 32GB micro SD card (not included), and does so in 1 to 5 minute clips (your choice). It does it like this so you don’t end up with one humongous 32GB file that’s too big to do anything with. At the end of the 5 hours, the video loops back and starts recording over the earlier stuff, unless you’ve told it not to in the settings. The files are time/date stamped, and if you buy the optional GPS module (I did), the videos are also geo-tagged with your location.

It also has a lot of neat features, like a G-sensor that will sense a crash and save any video from being overwritten from that point.

The video quality is very sharp and clear, with a 170 degree viewing angle. I’ll try to get it installed tomorrow and show you some video tomorrow night.

The only problem I foresee is in mounting it, or at least mounting it in two different vehicles, since it only comes with one mounting kit. But I’ll work something out.

My next new toy is also a tool. Well, kind of. It’s a Bluetooth Code Scanner for trucks and cars.

Bluetooth Scan Tool

Vgate Bluetooth OBD2 Scan Tool

It plugs into your diagnostic port under the dash, and then connects to your phone or tablet, using one of several apps.

If any of you are familiar with the Silverleaf VMSpc computer interface like Nick Russell and I run on our diesel engines, like below,


this is something very similar to that, but much, much cheaper. The VMSpc interface is several hundred dollars, but this one is $11.

The best way to start is to install the Torque app on your Android or iPad. Then you just plug the Scan Tool into the diagnostic port under your dash, start your vehicle, and connect your tablet’s Bluetooth to the Scan Tool’s signal.

At that point you can start to build your own virtual dashboard, just like you can on the VMSpc.

Here’s a sample.

Torque Screen Display3

And you can have 7 pages of different gauges to scroll through. You can  also log all your readings and email or share them.

And just like the VMSpc, this app lets you read and reset Check Engine light codes, and other parameters. The basic Torque software is free, and there are a number of other auto apps that will work with the unit. Check it out.

Here’s more info from CNet on the Torque app.

Later, after Jan made me put my toys away, we all headed up to La Grange for dinner. But I knew Nick would want to stop off at the Timeless Texas Classics classic car place.

Timeless Texas Classic 1

We visited here back right before Christmas, but I won’t post any photos this time because they would just be repeating what Nick will post. So check his blog out at the Gypsy Journal.

For dinner we went back to the Sealand Seafood restaurant in La Grange. Well, Jan and I went back. It was the first time for Nick and Terry, but everyone really enjoyed it. Great Seafood.

On our way home, we made a stop at the Wal-Mart before getting back to our rig’s about 7pm. Nice day.

Tomorrow night will be our last night together for a month or so until Tucson, so we wanted to eat somewhere special. And we all quickly agreed that the ‘somewhere special’ should be Little V’s Vietnamese Bistro back in Katy, where we just ate this past Saturday.

So, yes. It was that good.


Thought for the Day:

“Clothes make the man. Naked people have little to no influence on society” ~ Mark Twain.


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