May 19th, 2016

marcus 2013

Washing machine - the saga continues!

Just sent an email to Hotpoint Indesit, who do Hotpoint's servicing.

At the end of April I contacted you to request repairs to my Hotpoint
Washer-Dryer WD440 under my service contract with Domestic and

So far the sequence of events has been:

Wednesday 4th May. Wait in all day. Nobody turns up - it eventually
turns out that your engineer tried to contact someone at the other
flat in this house but got no reply because that person was at work
with phone switched off. After nearly an hour of calls I got through
to someone who arranged for an engineer to call the following Monday,
9th May.

Monday 9th May. Engineer turns up, eventually says he's fixed a dodgy
connection. Machine seems OK. Three hours later it turns out that it
isn't OK, it's stopped working at the start of the spin cycle, full of
wet clothes. Another half hour of calls gets me another appointment
for 11th May.

Wednesday 11th May. Engineer turns up, eventually says it needs a new
motor and controller board. Needless to say he doesn't have them in
the van. They'll call me to set up another appointment, probably next

Late Wednesday night - email saying they will come out on Monday 16th

Monday 16th - Phone call at 8 AM, the engineer is ill and they need to
reschedule. The earliest day available is Thursday. Get email which
does NOT give the appointment date. Use live chat to confirm that it
is the 19th.

Wednesday 18th - receive email and text rescheduling the visit to the
24th without explanation - unfortunately I was travelling most of the
day and received them too late to contact you and request

Thursday 19th (Today) - used live chat to contact you - I'm told that
the engineer is still ill, so it's rescheduled for the 24th.

In the unlikely event that you actually fix it on the 24th it will be
nearly a month since I've had a working washing machine, and six times
I've had to change my plans to fit in with the days your engineers can

I do not consider this to be satisfactory service.

I await your comments.
Not sure how I escalate it beyond this, but I think Domestic and General will definitely be hearing from me about the service I've been getting. Might also be worth contacting Hotpoint, though I suspect they are well aware of the crapness of their service.
marcus 2013

Anyone still use usenet RPG groups?

I'm not currently a usenet person - my ISP doesn't offer a usenet service and I don't really want to pay for it since I was ignoring 99% of posts when I used it.

But I think I should make some sort of effort to announce the changes in Forgotten Futures there, since I still haven't heard back from 30 or so registered users. Is there anyone here who still reads the RPG newsgroups and could post a pointer to the post that announced the changes? The important announcement was this one:

Alternatively, is there any simple way to make a few usenet posts without having to pay a subscription?


update - Just posted to and via Google Groups. Can anyone confirm the messages are actually showing in these groups?
marcus 2013

DIY project

I seem to come across old manual lenses quite often in street markets, boot fairs, etc., such as the 28mm lenses I didn't buy a couple of weeks back because the focusing mechanism was stuffed. I'm wondering how difficult it wold be to adapt one as a tilting lens along the lines of Lensbaby etc. The basic idea seems to be that you put the inner lens mechanism inside a flexible tube with something to adjust focus and angle - the original lensbaby prototype used a bit of vacuum cleaner tube and I think a few springs and bolts to adjust angle and focus. You'd also need some way of working the aperture control and keeping external light out. Thinking about it, this is the sort of thing 3D printing would probably make quite well, since the lens tube and lenses and the bayonet mount are the only really precisely made bits. I don't have a 3D printer but to quote Top Gear, "How hard could it be?"

I think I'm going to try this the next time I pick up a suitable lens that isn't good for anything else. In the unlikely event it actually works I'll post updates.