May 2006

Monthly Archive

No Signal problems… And solutions…

Posted by on 27 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

Betsie had been crossing the wire and cutting up the weeds in my flower beds last weekend. She also mowed eratically in the front yard. And the worst part, she crossed the wire and mowed the neighbor’s yard! I couldn’t figure out what was going on! I also was about to go away for a few days. So I left her turned off.

Today I got home and tried putting her in the front yard. She mowed a few feet then stopped, blinked No Signal, backed up, continued forward, repeat. That No Signal made me think something was really up with the wire. I walked around it and found a few spots where it was touching metal and fixed those. I put her in the back yard. She seemed fine there, except for occaisionally, No Signal.

I decided to stop and think. The last time I had her working fine was the day before that guy came and mowed my field down to normal lawn level. Maybe he hit the wire. However, on the same day, I rearranged the wire to cover the side yard. So, two changes.

I decided to make a sketch. I drew the house, fence, and yard. I started drawing the wire from Betsie’s house. It runs out to the front, in front of the garage, along th front of the house, along the side of the house to the trees. Then I left a small gap between the other wire so she could pass through there… Along the back deck, along the other side of the house.. And… Back to the charging station. Oops… That can’t be right. That would mean that I have two unconnected wires. One inside the other, and no power going to the outside perimeter! And that is exactly what I had.

Doh! So I went out to the side yard and redirected the wire to make a u-turn along the neighbors yard to circle the front. It had done that originally… But I switched it somehow.

Now Betsie is mowing just fine. Maybe Kerry was right about engineers causing problems. If it wasn’t a holiday weekend I would have emailed him for help.


Posted by on 17 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

I just went to find Betsie before settling in for the evening. I peeked out the window just in case she might have made it home to dock on her own, and there she was! Sleeping in her house. Yay!

Always wanted my own ski area view

Posted by on 16 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

In the winter I love looking up at the closed and dark ski area watching the snowcats plow the trails. Betsie is like that for my yard.

Or maybe more like a firefly since she only blinks every few seconds.

I hate lawnmowers

Posted by on 10 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

The lawnmower my landlord provided with the house won’t start. The one that a neighbor brough over, I can’t make it start. Betsie, the lawnbott, one push of a button and she’s mowing.

It looked nicer before I think….

Posted by on 05 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

Now that the field is getting cut shorter it’s not as green.
I liked it before! Haha

Back Yard Before and After

Posted by on 04 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

I need to take another after picture of the dog fence area. It’s
done now too!


The Front “Field”

Posted by on 04 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

We’re chopping away at it bit by bit!




First Day Photos

Posted by on 04 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

These pictures are from the very first afternoon with Betsie!
The Box and Charging Station (and curious kitty)

Betsie: Outside on the Lawn
















Tiny bit of progress on the front field

Posted by on 04 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

We are making a tiny bit of progress on the front field tonight (I can’t call it a lawn in the state it is in now!). Unfortunately, it’s growing taller every day too!

Notice tonight that starting a spiral in a clear spot and chipping away outward works good. She can keep moving that way. Spiralling in the middle of the tall grass doent work at all because she can’t do anything on a single wheel.

If it wasn’t for the seed pods life would be swell.

Still planning on getting it mowed by human intervention if it’s still a field on Saturday!


Posted by on 03 May 2006 | Tagged as: General

Yesterday I moved the home base from the back yard to the side yard. The power now comes from the garage outlet and exits via a window.

The home base is still inside the dog fence area (I don’t have a dog, it was set up for the previous tenant) so I can shut the double wide gate and keep Betsie in the side and back yard only.

The front yard… A field. I might have to break down and call the kid who wanted to mow it.

On the other hand. My push-powered rotary blade mower is not so bad at hacking down weeds. Especially if you mow around them in a circle.
It’s a good work out!

I met a guy today who stopped to ask about Betsie and ended up chatting for an hour or so. She actually showed off by going the whole length of the front yard and back before choking on a 18″ seed pod and shutting down. There is still hope.

I bordered out some of the 4×4 border of the “driveway” tonight. I might skip that and just smooth the transition out with a bag of dirt. It would probably work better anyway.

I have her working zones set to run from 17:30-23:30 and then 1:00-5:30 so she really only runs when I’m home. I check her whereabouts when I leave for work (and right now, before bed too because I’m curious).

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