Tips and Tricks

Here's a few tips you may find useful.

Scratched CDís
CDís not ejecting properly
Changing printer ink cartridges (ink jet)
Getting wax out of carpets etc.
Exams
Keeping Notes

Scratched CDís

If you have a CD or DVD that wonít play without skipping or sticking, and there are scratches on the underside of the disk especially radial (going round the playing surface) scratches that you suspect might be the cause (scratches going across the playing surface from middle to outer edge donít affect playback much) then these can be removed with a little T cut (car paint restorer) and some careful polishing.

Be careful, it is a powerful solvent with abrasive elements so use only a little and be sure to get it all off before playing as it can damage the playerís lens.

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CDís not ejecting properly

This seems to be a problem on slot drives more than platter types. It had been a problem in my car for some time. Then I noticed it only happened with disks I had made for the car using printable surface media, and not original disks. I then noticed a tackiness to the surfaces.

A bit of thought and I realised that being made to take water based inks the tackiness must be to make the ink take better and the dampness in the car had activated it again. Solution, a very thin smear of WD40 round the centre and the problem has gone away.

If printed on then the ink is best left to dry over night before the oil is applied.

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Changing printer ink cartridges (ink jet)

If after you replace the ink cartridge in your printer you see lines on your prints, donít go running continuous head cleaning cycles, as if one clean doesnít do it the cause is likely to be air in the ink (also the cycles tends use a lot of ink typically).

If you leave over night or for a few hourís it should settle itself out. I must have wasted loads of ink trying to get a clean print before I gave up in disgust for the night. Tackling it a fresh in the morning I found it printed perfectly. I then saw similar advice on the web which confirmed my theory.

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Getting wax out of carpets etc.

If you have ever had candle melt down and drip on carpet you will know how well the wax clings to the pile.

However there is an easy solution. If you remove as much of the bulk as possible (hot knife) with out cutting, melting or damaging the carpet, then take some absorbent kitchen towel and lay 2 layers on the wax then iron the paper.

The heat will gently melt the wax allowing it to be soaked up by the towel. It may take several goes and sheets of towel to completely soak it up and you have to go gentle with heat of the iron so as not to melt the carpet. Start with the coolest setting and bring it up till it works. and keep the iron moving also helps to stop the heat damaging the carpet. Hopefully you will then be unable to see any sighn of where the wax was..

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Exams

One of the best bits of advice I got was to stop revising a subject at least a week before the exam. That way you wonít come across anything that will knock your confidence thereby giving you exam nerves and impairing your ability to do the exam. If you donít know it by then its to late anyway to get information into you brain and usable for the exam.

Once your in the exam, take a few moments to look over the paper (my grandfather recommended chewing a toffee) and then attack the questions that youíll find the easiest. This gives your brain a chance to get in the swing of things before the harder stuff and having got some marks in the bag as it where, bolsters you confidence.

Using the above I managed to pass all my exams, including maths higher by doing the geometric questions (which I was good at) and only tackling the algebra (which I hated) ones last. (B+) and chemistry ordinary which I stopped taking after the prelims to concentrate on my other subjects and only sat the exam as it was already booked so was very relaxed about it. I got a hell of a shock when I opened my results and saw a pass (c) my mother seeing my face thought I must have failed the lot.

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Keeping Notes

This is an idea that came to me only a couple of years ago. No idea why it took me so long itís so obvious.

Get your self an address book, preferably one with lose leaves so you can add more later and alphabetise your crucial snippets of info in one place. I.e. Set ups for equipment and tools, Values for capturing video, Details of chemical processes and other pointers to help remember stuff

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This page added..11/06/09