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About McSpredder

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  1. Follow the example set by Scotland's chief medical officer - NOT.
  2. Are those two posts in response to the picture posted by Dave-G, showing a sheep covered in blood? And do you both consider that "..... the selfish desire of some to circumvent government advice with the sole aim of going out shooting to enjoy themselves" is an accurate way to describe pest control intended to prevent suffering of farm animals?
  3. Ran a Mark 1 Escort for several years over rural roads and farm tracks in the area between Banff and Tomintoul. Very basic 1100cc model, bought s/h in reasonable condition, previously owned by a kirk minister. Generally went well. Needed a couple of bags of sand in the boot when the roads were icy. Heater was very effective (much appreciated in that part of the world). Strut tops rusted, but I welded them up myself – in those days you could buy a BOC Portapak + bottles and take them away with no questions asked, for less than the cost of having the job done at a garage. The only other repair needed was one rear wheel bearing. Only sold it because it because I had the offer of an old but immaculate Saab 99.
  4. Are you PC Walker from Heartbeat? I rather liked the LE Velo. Travelled quite often between Bedford and Worcestershire on the 3-speed, hand start/hand change model over the 1964-65 winter. When the roads were icy I would have preferred to keep both hands on the bars, the 6V headlamp only gave out about 1 candle power, and a Lambretta could easily overtake me, but it was a nice bike for pottering about the country lanes, and in excellent condition. I foolishly traded it in for a s/h Minivan, complete with tin-worm. From 1974-77 I rode to work on a 4-speed, kick start/foot change model, with Zener diode 12V electrics and vastly improved lighting. Never had any mechanical problems with either of those bikes, and of course they didn’t spray your trousers with oil in the manner of a Bantam or Tiger Cub.
  5. Diamonds for headlights. Reminds me of that old song about Willie the Weeper.
  6. Hard to argue that this is related to food production.
  7. Around 1960 our local newsagent usually had one or two spare copies left over, and would sell the previous week's ST at half price. I always snapped them up, and looked forward to "Tower Bird", Gough Thomas, David Imrie (Lakeland gamekeeper), letters from Sir John Craster of Craster Towers, etc, etc. However, the number of copies I have bought during the past 20 years could be counted on the thumbs of one hand.
  8. Take care if you are planning to modify a rotary mower, because it is not unknown for blades to break free. Tip speeds are often in the region of 200mph, and a piece of metal flying can do a lot of damage. Insurers won’t be happy if there is a claim involving a mower with unauthorised modifications. I know of one case where a blade flew off an agricultural mower, sliced through a wire mesh fence and cut a hole in a sub-station transformer. Transformer cooling oil leaked out and contaminated surrounding land, soil from an area about 20mx20m had to be dug out to a depth of 1m and taken away to a specialist de-contamination facility – very costly for the insurer. You don’t have that risk with a reciprocating mower like the Allen Scythe.
  9. Did you have to walk along with it like a peasant, or were you one of those superior types (like the head gardener at the stately home) who rode behind on a little trailed seat, grinning smugly at the lower classes?
  10. Ah yes, the old green machine with the big wheels and the silky-smooth clutch engagement (not). All the professional groundsmen seemed to use them in the good old days. Grandad owned one of those in the 1950s and loved it, but eventually had to part with it because it kept pulling him off his feet (mid you, he was in his 80s by then).
  11. Quote from email sent this afternoon by the Institution of Agricultural Engineers (IAgrE): The IAgrE has been in discussion with various government departments to ascertain whether our members would be classed as 'key workers' and the answer, unfortunately, is not entirely clear. DEFRA has told us that if you are directly involved in the food production chain, that is to say that if you do not do your job there will be a hold up in food production or a loss in the food production chain, then you are a 'key worker'. Thus, for those of us who are not delivering spare parts or equipment to farms, are not repairing equipment, or are not involved directly in keeping the technology of planting, harvesting etc. going then we may not be classed as a 'key worker'. The government is requiring the employer, the company and the self-employed individual to determine for themselves whether people are 'key workers'. DEFRA has pointed out, however, that if this is abused, then they will come down hard on those who have acted irresponsibly.
  12. "..... we've proved it again and again, That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld You never get rid of the Dane."
  13. We know that the ECHA asked for evidence and information on lead shot to be provided by 16 December 2019. Presumably the UK shooting organisations responded, but I don’t recall seeing a copy of anything submitted on my behalf by either BASC or CA. Have I missed something, or is this information not being revealed to the membership?
  14. There are about 700,000 FAC/SGC holders in UK. How many did you have to contact in order to find out the majority opinion?
  15. Good advice. When considering those Symposium papers, or anything described as a “scientific” report, it is worth asking yourself a few simple questions: Are the authors qualified and/or experienced in the topic, or might they just be people who acquired a science degree years ago in some completely different subject and have jumped onto a popular band-wagon? Does the paper include new information? Scientists gain promotion or win research contracts by publishing lots of papers, and many of them play the numbers game, presenting the same information time and time again on the conference circuit or in several different journals or textbooks. Have the authors indulged in a lot of self-citation, repeatedly quoting their own previous publications? “Citation count” is another aid to career advancement for scientists. Have they actually measured anything, or have they simply manipulated others peoples’ data? Are the experimental methods and/or calculation procedures fully described, so that another person could check the results? Where a paper includes mathematical models, have these ever been validated against real-world data? Have the authors taken adequate account of “common knowledge”? Academics are advised to begin a research project by reviewing recent journal papers, and tend to assume that no worthwhile knowledge exists unless it was published in a scientific journal. Where results are said to be statistically significant, are they actually important? If I gave you one penny, there is not the slightest doubt that I would be poorer and you would be richer, but in truth it would make no real difference to either of us. Finally, here are two things that have been said about our esteemed academic institutions (sorry I cannot remember where they originated): Universities were once populated by people in search of the truth, but are now populated by people in search of funding. University is a place where naked ambition stalks behind thickets of useless research.
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