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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Start on 2 November 2013 next to Hydroscand office

Amphibear Around the World journey starts 2 November 2013 at Peterburi tee 83B, Tallinn, Estonia at 12.00. Departure of Amphibear to Around the World journey will be hold 11-12 at Hydroscand parking slot next to Hydroscand office.

All Amphibear Team members will be present (Mait Nilson, Hamor Kaha, Erki Koldits, Marek Kiisa, Kristjan Kalda, Peeter Annus). Mait Nilson and Hamor Kaha will depart for the first stage of journey from Tallinn, Estonia to St Louis, Senegal.

All who want to see the vehicle and departure are welcomed, all the rest can read about our journey right here in the blog.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Weldings quality control

With naked eye one does not see through the weldings. But you need to. Aluminium weldings can develop micro defects with repeated forces or vibration. Later it can lead to structural defects. Pontoons are of course checked in factory. But with this unusual application it is better to check them before the journey one more time.

This was possible in company Technical Inspection Service, or TIS. In a busy week, Amphibear control was planned for Saturday.

TIS NDT inspector Ivan Podkhomutnikov and background of company certificates.

First stage of control is close inspection outside and inside of weldings. Inside is checked with endoscope. Endoscope is small camera with light at the end of long and flexible wire.

Simple and effective method to check weldings was used at next stage - marker color with chalk color.
First, cleaned weldings are painted with red marker colour. Then all visible color is cleaned away, and same place covered with chalk color.  After drying chalk absorbs the marker color from micro defects and makes them visible.  Microholes are visible as red dots on picture. There were no cracks found, also the holes were on the surface only.

Last control method used, was x-ray picture of weldings. As for the x-ray bystanders (me) were deported for their own safety, then no picture of the method.

TIS inspektors Ivan Podkhomutnikov and Andrei Martikainen with inspected Amphibear.

During inspection one can see the inside of the weldings. As usual, they do not look nice. However as conclusion, most of the weldings are high quality and no structural problems for pontoons. Only remark was to improve the weldings of engine mount.

Thank you TIS team! Goodbye picture under corporate logo on office building.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Five fingers

We discussed with Erki Koldits and Kristjan Kalda communication with the support team. If both sides know the code, information about the weather for 5 days can be posted in an sms of 160 signs. Of course there were also other matters to discuss.

The fun part of the day was trying on the Vibram FiveFingers shoes. Everybody in possession of 5 toes on both feet tried them on. There were different opinions. The most innovative ones liked them and said that the shoes felt extremely comfortable. “It is like walking barefoot!” , they said. The others could not detect their toes and had difficulties with putting the Vibrams on. They said it was a torture. And some said that they simply needed some time to get used to the new type of footwear. A refreshing sensation anyway it was. Hopefully we shall see some of our Amphibear-adventure members moving their toes soon.

Vibram FiveFingers water-resistant models LONTRA were granted to the Amphibear team by the European and Estonian FiveFingers representatives to support the team on their wet adventure.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

With 35 million volunteers

Greetings from Amphibear to Clean the World team! The Estonian team is the smallest most enthusiastic team I have ever seen.

They believe, they can change the world. As result they change it. I am proud to give my hand to the enthusiastic clean the world teams all over the world and promote their message.

Monday, October 7, 2013

FLIR window in darkness

Night navigation is easy, if you have traveled the waterway for years. On my fishing places I know the contours and can drive in darkness to the home. However, some light is still needed. In cloudy weather, light misty rain in autumn it can be really really dark. And navigation just by plotter is not secure at all. Amphibear is too small for proper marine radar. Radar would need experience to read also. Therefore the real thermal imaging was on the wishlist for Amphibear. Even in total absence of visible light and in mist it can draw the picture of your surroundings.

Thanks to FLIR support, the FLIR MD-324 is installed on Amphibear now. The main unit sits like small alien on front frame corner.

Indifferently from common night vision systems, thermal imaging is easy to test. You do not need darkness, as picture will be the same during twilight and night time.

And special benefit, it will be useful for hitting the road. It gives good visibility of humans and animals on roadside. I wish to have one of these on all my vehicles, it is so good improvement for the road ahead.