I Have a Question - Volume 300 [Read only] - rtj70

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Edited by Dynamic Dave on 20/07/2009 at 19:55

Dishwasher or D.I.Y - maz64
We live in a very hard water area - wouldn't a dishwasher just get gunked up?
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - rtj70
No because you add salt to soften the water in a special compartment. The dishwasher automatically adds it. But most dishwasher tablets have this in it anyway. You do need to tell it how much of the salt to add - info will be in the owners manual. Ours is set to disable that as we live in a soft water area.

Edited by rtj70 on 16/07/2009 at 16:17

Dishwasher or D.I.Y - nick
Your water company will tell you the hardness of your water then consult the manual to see what setting you need.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - maz64
Thanks for the replies, and apologies for hijacking the thread somewhat.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - rtj70
The other big big saving for dishwashers is time. How much time do we save by using it? Don't know but can be considerable. Even if more costly than washing up by hand (and I don't think it is) it must save many many hours per week. All good by me.

So for the original question - yes do try it out. Your existing Indesit D4000 may still be okay.

Note: we do not have a water meter so water use not a concern here but the youngest probably uses far more water when he has his very long (expensive) showers.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - perro
I know that Miele, Bosch and AEG are the bee's knee's and you get what you pay for but - is this triple A rated Beko any good ~
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - rtj70
Cannot comment on that one but due to having an integrated dishwasher with a wood panel on it, I once replaced the original in the kitchen with a budget colour coordinated one (brown controls) to fit the wood panel. It didn't last 18 months! It just broke and parts were hard to come by.

It was not that cheap due to it being integrated. It felt quite cheap and nasty to be honest but the only one in the price range I was willing to pay that was integrated. Replaced with a Siemens (it was cheaper than the Bosch's and came with 5 year guarantee) and build quality is much much better and near silent. It was also cheaper than the cheap integrated one. I had to convince my wife a white dishwasher would not look out of place (it doesn't) first.

So I'd look at something a little better than a Beko personally.

Other advantages with the Bosch/Siemens for example is the upper tray is height adjustable and can also be removed completely to do large items like oven trays.

Where abouts are you in the UK? I got this locally for a very good price in Manchester (Chorlton actually).
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - perro
Cheer's Rob - the funny? thing is that what started me looking into dishwashers was that my mate told me that his Beko has just broken down!
I'm in Cornwall but I usually buy goods on-line, although Comet is good for prices and they are nationwide.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - rtj70
Just checked the online side of the business I got mine from and they only have smeg dishwashers online. Probably have more instore.

This is basically the one I have but I paid about £350 for it a few years ago:


But not at John Lewis. This is probably the equivalent Bosch version:


Edited by Dynamic Dave on 17/07/2009 at 01:17

Dishwasher or D.I.Y - perro
Many thank's for that Rob, I'll have a word with my financial advisor - when she comes in :)

Dishwasher or D.I.Y - gordonbennet
Perro, it's worth doing some searching online, if you google you'll find that many Miele dishwashers come with 5 year warranty as standard anyway, as do some other quality makes...i think on some you can up the warranty for 10 years for a very small contribution, circa £30 or so.

A good starting point might be John Lewis' site and then search outwards maybe when you've short listed some models.

I couldn't comment on the Beko dishwasher you linked to, i had a washing machine of that make once years ago, the concrete weight block broke within a week, various other bits broke or fell off (or weren't connected at the factory anyway) and i'd replaced it with a Bosch within a year (which still runs well many years later) disgusted with myself for being an idiot but funds were tight at the time.

As we often discover too late the most economical buy isn't always the very cheapest.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - perro
>>> As we often discover too late the most economical buy isn't always the very cheapest. <<<

Isn't that the truth! My old AEG washer is 12.5 years old and still going strong.

Thank's gb
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - Stuartli
Several Miele dishwasher come with a five year parts and labour guarantee:

Dishwasher or D.I.Y - Stuartli
Just for interest, the Best Buys according to a well known consumer magazine, and prices include:

Bosch SRS55C02GB Classixx (£290)

Bosch SGS45C02GB Classixx (£305)

AEG-Electrolux F60760 (£399)

Bosch SMS65E02GB Exxcel and Bosch SMS53L02GB Exxcel (around £400)

Neff S54M45X5GB (£450)

Miele G1022 (£450) and Miele G1142SC (£470)

Miele, Neff, Siemens and Bosch all score 90 per cent or slightly more reliability scores - good for dishwashers.

Obviously there are more and, up the scale, more expensive.

There are eight Beko dishwashers tested and all receive excellent comments, although reliability samples were not sufficient to return a verdict yet.

My best mate used to sell Beko appliances when he had a retail appliances shop (included selling Miele) and he always spoke well of them.

Edited by Stuartli on 16/07/2009 at 19:14

Dishwasher or D.I.Y - bathtub tom
I'd advise buying one that's got as few programs as possible - whoever uses a 'plate warming' program?

We're now on our second and only ever use 'rinse and hold' and general wash programs.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - rtj70
'plate warming' program?

That's a new one to me. Our Siemens has rinse, Quick Wash, Eco (50 deg C), Auto (55-65 dedg C and time depends on how dirty dishes are), 70 deg C and then there's a "Reduced Time" button that alters all the programme timings.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - perro
>>> Just for interest, the Best Buys according to a well known consumer magazine <<<

'Which' magazine would that be then Stuart?
Cheer's, - I used to always consult that esteemed publication.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - bathtub tom
>>>> 'plate warming' program?

The last thing a dishwasher does, AFAIK, is to turn on the heat when all the water's gone to get everything inside nice and hot to aid drying.

The 'plate warming program' implemented this last part of the cycle. The idea was you stuffed your dinner plates inside the dishwasher to warm them up - who cares about global warming? ;>)

Our current model only has three programs:
Rinse and hold
Heavy wash
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - 1400ted
Our Bosch failed about 3 years ago. Swmbo dragged me along to a small independent we have used in the past in Urmston. They fit new one and take away the old one and the aftersales service is first class. Could be worth finding one near you.
They recommended a CDA no problems at all, fitted the new integrated door a couple of months ago to go with the new kitchen. Like Rob, very soft water here so no problems with gunge.
Bit far to come from Cornwall tho'
Couldn't live without it now...better things to do than wash pots ! She cooks, I wash up..
therefore, essential bit of kit.

Dishwasher or D.I.Y - rtj70
I believe the better ones use a heat exchanger to capture heat from the hot water. This heat is later used to dry the dishes. It does not heat up the dishwasher as such, just re-uses the heat from the wash cycle.
Dishwasher or D.I.Y - wotspur

At xmas I had the same problem, dishwasher broke, washing machine was ok, but tumble dryer hadn't worked properly for ages -well all items were 12 years old - got a Bosch broucher, deleted those not suitable, then went looking to confirm items required.

Eventually plumped for a SMS53LO2GB - £460 - very happy so far

I looked under curry's and comet (using voucher codes) then sainsburys and a place I think in Norfolk -Hughes !! to get the best prices - then I went to my local BOSCH supplier and said this is what I wanted - I got all 3 items for 1280, including fitting and removing of old items -as someone mentioned its got too many programmes that aren't used but it wasn't possible to get the size we wanted with only 3 programmes !!
famous adverts from the 80's what happened ?? - wotspur

We all remember the "R Whites - I'm a secret lemonade drinker" , "Double Diamond works wonders and "Golden Wonder , sweet jungle fresh" great adverts with memorable tunes -but whatever happened to the products ??
famous adverts from the 80's what happened ?? - Dipstick
R Whites and Golden Wonder are still available, although they have changed somewhat. Double Diamond ceased to be available in 2003.

I'm sad about the loss of proper Caramac, and especially Birdseye something the swear filter won't let me type for reasons that are beyond me that starts with R and rhymes with miss oles.

Edited by Dipstick on 17/07/2009 at 09:56

famous adverts from the 80's what happened ?? - daveyjp
You need to change your shopping habits. You can still buy R Whites and Golden Wonder. And a quick Google reveals only the Double Diamond brand was dropped, you can still get Burton Ale.
famous adverts from the 80's what happened ?? - Stuartli
As stated, you can certainly still buy R Whites, but for many people it proves too expensive against the supermarkets' own brand equivalent (perhaps a third of the R White price).

Certainly the competition hurts, as I've seen R Whites's lemonade on short term offer for as little as 29p at FarmFoods, whilst other big names such as Coca-Cola regularly let the supermarkets have six cab pack promotions at half-price.

In fact the Tesco and Morrisons two-litre bottles of "Cokemax" and "Pepsimax" are quite good, particularly at a price of around 45p or less a bottle. They were certainly much enjoyed in the recent hot weather.

As for Double Diamond, I used to drink quite a bit of it, along with Red Barrel and similar - however, a family member who was in the Merchant Navy used to drink Triple Diamond whilst at sea.

Not only was it stronger, but the price was a fraction of Double Diamond back on shore.

Edited by Stuartli on 17/07/2009 at 10:20

famous adverts from the 80's what happened ?? - perro
>>> As for Double Diamond, I used to drink quite a bit of it, along with Red Barrel <<<

A man after me own heart! ... + Worthington E :-)
Two Telephone Providers - redviper

Im due to move in with my partner, at the end of this year.

I want to keep my current provider for Broadband as i have provider specfic email addresses however you can only use this provider with BT.

My Partner gets her TV/Telephone and Internet with Virgin and does not want to give them up.

The only way around this, is that im going to have to get a BT Line Installed, Im quite willing to pay the instalation fee - however is it possivle to have two providers of Landline at the same addrres.
I know you can have too BT lines installed as i got one extra at my parents house - however is it possible to have two landlines from two providers at the same address.

I will contact BT at some point and find out, i just wondered if anyone knew :-)

Many Thanks

Edited by redviper on 17/07/2009 at 12:56

Two Telephone Providers - Altea Ego
Is the virgin cable? if so then there might even be an inactive bt line there ready to be activated.

If not, yes you can pay to have two, or three or four lines installed to you house. Matters not who they are as long as they dont share the same physical line.

Two Telephone Providers - redviper

Yes i think it is, but at the very least if not at least i know i can have another provider in, many thanks for that :-)
Two Telephone Providers - David Horn
Is it just for email? If so, I believe you can pay BT a small monthly fee to maintain your email address.

Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - L'escargot
Is it possible that wind turbines may have a deleterious effect on weather and climate, and the earth's rotational speed?

After all, it's inevitable that in the process of extracting power from the wind the speed of the wind will be decreased. Also the horizontal force of the columns on the earth will alter the rotational speed of the earth. You don't get owt for nowt.

I'm not convinced that we've been given all the facts regarding wind turbines. We're playing about with nature and that could be dangerous.
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - perro
You've not been on the Absinthe again have you?
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - L'escargot
You've not been on the Absinthe again have you?

And you've not given it much thought!
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - FotheringtonThomas
Is it possible that wind turbines may have a deleterious effect on .. the earth's
rotational speed?

Yup. It'll be small, though.
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - perro
>>> And you've not given it much thought! <<<

That's correct, I haven't ... obviously it will affect area's immediately down wind of them but when one thinks' of the effect of all the 'skyscrapers' in the world, I can't really see wind turbines having much affect but ... I stand to be corrected!
While I've 'got the floor' - what would effect the Earth's rotational speed is if/when the ice caps melt!!
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - gordonbennet
Infinitely small IMO compared with the considerable effect of huge buildings etc, which again would be minute compared with naturally occurred mountains/terrain and the continual growth and natural (and man made) destruction of trees.

Not being in the least educated in this type of thing i'd be more concerned about the differing structure under the Earth's surface where billions of tons of oil have been extracted...even should water replace this, it isn't a natural and identically behaving replacement.
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - jbif
Is it possible that wind turbines may have a deleterious effect on .. the earth's rotational speed? >>

By the same reasoning, the destruction of rain forests removes a lot of the "roughness", and therefore reduces wind resistance, on the earth's surface. So does the earth's rotation speed up as we cut down forests?
Also, the snail may like to ask: Does extracting energy via wind, wave and solar power plants result in the earth cooling down? If so, should we be worried about global cooling?
Ans what about energy from nuclear power plants? By splitiing the atom and releasing nuclear energy, are we heating up the planet to upset the natural earth-solar gain/loss equilibruim point?
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - bell boy
oil being taken out of the ground as mentioned above
has anyone other than me ever looked at all the vehicles on the road around them and then see an intersection on the telly full of big cars on the merry go round and think that all these vehicles all have a tank fullish of a liquid that comes out of the ground x by nearly 100 years of being extracted and why doesnt the world implode

it worries me sometimes and my absinth bottle is empty till october :-(
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - pmh3
Maybe we should have an 'earth speed up day'. Get all the cars and trucks on the planet lined up pointing due West, and on the third stroke at 24.00 GMT, everybody accelerates hard! The resulting reaction force should speed up the earths rotation. (or have I got it the wrong way round?)

It seemed a good idea at the time.
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - old crocks
Unfortunately ( or maybe fortunately! ) this would only last for as long as we continued driving west at full speed. As soon as we slowed down so would the earth!

Or maybe if we all drove with a turbine on the roof it would cancel things out ;-)
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - perro
So ... why does this planet keep on revolving for billions of years?
What is driving it - apart from Absinth?
Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - crunch_time
Absinthe makes the heart grow fonder.

exit: stage left, pursued by a snail

Effect of wind turbines on weather/climate etc - perro
-----> exit: stage left, pursued by a snail - and a Dog!
Nokia 6500 slide - Martin Devon
Grrrrr. Does anyone know, ANYONE, cos Orange don't.

There is a small icon that appears, seemingly for no reason at the top of the screen to the right of all other icons. It it blue, it is round and it has what looks like two hands of a clock within it indicating three o'clock, but is, I am sure a Herring of whatever colour! Further to this there is a tiny little 'spike' that appears out of the side of the circle at 13.30 if you get my drift. It is driving me nuts as I cannot find reference to it anywhere, and like you lot the guys at Orange think I have been smoking.

Nokia 6500 slide - Robin
Is it the Bluetooth symbol?
Nokia 6500 slide - Martin Devon
Is it the Bluetooth symbol?

No Sir. The only thing that I thought it corresponded to was an unsent message, but that proved to be another Herring.

Come on you Techies....................come on.

Best regards.......MD
Nokia 6500 slide - Rattle
Is it not just informing you that you have 3G access? My business phone is a 6500 slide though and the I do have a black box with a G in it but nothing that looks like a 3. Try turning you phone and off it might just be an application open some where.
Nokia 6500 slide - rtj70
He never mentioned the numeral three - it is a blue circle with "clock like hands" at the three of clock position.

I'm stumped what to suggest.

Is the 6500 slide a Nokia Series 40 or Series 60 (i.e. Symbian smart) phone?
Nokia 6500 slide - Dynamic Dave
Not sure if you've RTFM Martin, but I just have glanced through it and can't see any symbol that you describe.


Nokia 6500 slide - Martin Devon
Not sure if you've RTFM Martin but I just have glanced through it and can't
see any symbol that you describe.

Nor can anyone DD. It is still there though and comes and goes. I have managed to take a pic of it so how do I upload it again? DOH!!

Nokia 6500 slide - Pugugly

E-mail it to the Mods, we'll sort it for you

Nokia 6500 slide - Martin Devon
E-mail it to the Mods we'll sort it for you

>>Thank, on way.
Nokia 6500 slide - Pugugly
Got it - One of the others will hopefully post it in here, (I can't) to me it looks as if you have an alarm set on the clock/timer thingy.
Nokia 6500 slide - Martin Devon
Got it - One of the others will hopefully post it in here (I can't)
to me it looks as if you have an alarm set on the clock/timer thingy.

Hi Rob, I have got the alarm set, but it was there before I set it for tomorrows early start. I have just turned the alarm off though to test the theory and it is still there.

Nokia 6500 slide - Old Navy
I am not familiar with this phone, but could it be a stopwatch, or countdown timer function, or a note, or reminder, or birthday type reminder, or a calender function of some sort set for way in the future?
Nokia 6500 slide - Martin Devon
I am not familiar with this phone but could it be a stopwatch or countdown
timer function or a note or reminder or birthday type reminder or a calender function
of some sort set for way in the future?

Good Evening O.N. I was just about to post something to you saying no to your suggestion/s when I was offered some Humble Pie from the Larder don't you know. Well having had a small piece my mind was rejuvenated (Yeah Lads, I know) and I went to Stopwatch which I used for the eggs this morning. Oh that's enough of the pink fluffy dice & Bluster and it turns out that the stopwatch wasn't turned off and was in a holding position. When accessed it asked if I wanted to continue. Politely saying no has removed the offending 'Blue thing', hopefully for good. I guess when this has happened before and one doesn't 'continue' then after a suitable period ol' 'Blue' goes away.

Thank you for clearing up this awful mess and I am going to open you a bottle of Marston's Pedigree.

Very best regards...........Martin.

P.S. This place is like on olde worlde Ironmongers. They ain't nothing ya can't get.

Edited by Webmaster on 20/07/2009 at 01:33

Nokia 6500 slide - Old Navy
Glad my grey cell nudge worked, enjoy your beer!
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
I am spending a lot of time at a business about a mile due north of Kings Cross at the moment. I live in Cheshire so the obvious thing would be to use the train. However, at the times I need to travel it is very expensive. It is still much cheaper to drive provided one of the very few parking spaces is available at my destination.

The other downside to driving though is that at certain times of day it is a very long haul back to the M1 due to traffic. Sometimes, unfortunately, I have no choice but to drive because of the amount of kit I have to bring with me.

On the occasions I can travel light it occurs to me that I might benefit from driving to the northern outskirts of London, parking cheaply somewhere and continuing on by tube.

Any suggestions please ?

From my limited knowledge of the area Cockfosters looks like an option maybe ?

Would consider cycling the last part if practical.....


Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
Edit above - nearest tube station to my destination is Caledonian Road apparently. Approx 0.5 mile. Kings Cross is 0.8 mile.

Ther are no NCP type places other than at Kings Cross ( v-expensive ) and on street parking in the area is hugely expensive and impractical due to time restrictions.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - gordonbennet
I should imagine Lud or another local will have the perfect solution for you Humph.

But i imagine your preferred route will be M40 straight in.
I would have said go to Watford Junction and use the Mainline train in but you've got the M25 roadworks on that section now and Watford can be a PITA.
We sometimes do that ourselves, but we are already on the M1.

So for driving ease i'm going to suggest Perivale just off the A40 and before the Hanger lane jct where all the problems start.
That's Central line i believe which should take you to Oxford Circus change to Victoria line to Kings Cross.

There will be much better tube connections for you but i'm thinking of your driving sanity here, what the parking will be like at Perivale i don't have the foggiest.

Edited by gordonbennet on 19/07/2009 at 13:47

Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Altea Ego
m40 to uxbridge. Picadily line in.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
Thanks chaps. How about Luton-ish ?

Edited by Humph Backbridge on 19/07/2009 at 14:02

Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - gordonbennet
Ah so you don't mind using the M1 then....Luton central traffic can be pretty awful, but you could see what your connections would be like from Luton Airport station (could be expensive parking) or even Leagrave station, easy access from MI jct12.

An outside possibility if you don't mind arriving at Euston and popping up a station on the tube then Milton Keynes is easy to park at, and easy access if you come off at jct15 pop down the A508 then A5 and the station is just off the A5.

In your situation i wouldn't want that central London traffic or parking nightmare either.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
Thanks again GB. If this becomes a regular-ish trip which it might, I'm sorely temted to buy one of those little monkeybike things May and Hammond featured on that episode of TG where they worked as "get you home" drivers for people who had been drinking.

Alternatively a gert big one to do the whole journey on.....darling, I've just had a really good idea............You'll see it makes sense in a minute I promise.......

Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Pugugly
Look into my eyes and repeat after me "BMW R1200GS - ideal motorway and urban bike"
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back

( I can spell tempted BTW, sorry ! )
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - gordonbennet
If this becomes a regular-ish trip which it might I'm sorely tempted
to buy one of those little monkeybike things

Been toying with one of those meself for when i run out of driving hours 40 or 50 miles from home, s'pose it would be a good idea to try one first, 3 or 4 miles might be OK, 30 or 40 may not.

The big bike may really be a good thought, how you convince Lady B is another problem entirely..;)
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
Off to spray creosote stuff on a fence this PM. Will ponder the matter of the bike thing and try to concoct suitable convincing proposal..........

BMW 1200 thingy.....? Like the sound of that..........


Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - gordonbennet
Another thought on the train connection....Potter's Bar, good parking and easy access from M25, and the right line.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
Aye - that might do, in the meanwhile........

Can you get waterproof panniers big enough for a laptop? Just curious......
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Stuartli
You can plan Tube journeys using this link:


When I used to go to Wembley Stadium, I found that the best way was to go to Stanmore and park the car in the area before going on the Tube to the stadium. I was usually half way home after matches whilst those who had driven to Wembley were still waiting to get out of the area.

I notice that Edgeware is quite close and this could perhaps be used in a similar manner to travel to King's Cross/St Pancras by Tube.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
Thanks for the interactive map thing Stuartli
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Optimist
Back to the tube again.

There's a car park right at Hanger Lane. You just walk up the steps to the train. Then it's the Metropolitan line all the way in to Kings Cross.

Traffic really slows where the M25 junction comes off the M40 but you can plan for that. On the way home you've got a great head's start out of London.

Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - pmh3
As an ex Potters Bar Commuter, the rail service is good. However it will probably depend on the time of day for parking. Most time efficient is probably Luton - car parking at the Parkway station is not that expensive, some people use it as it is cheaper option than the airport parking! Use M1 J10 and follow signs initially for airport. Harpenden would also work, but I am not sure of the parking situation.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
Thanks Optimist and pmh3. Good stuff.

I suspect I'll try most of these suggestions to see which works best re costs / time / convenience.

I hate London.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Pugugly
Bluebell Crewe don't do motorbikes anymore but the Franchise is now in Chester


Always bargains and loved bikes on the above site.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - bathtub tom
Anywhere that means travelling through J13 M1 isn't a good idea at the moment. I think the work is due to take a couple of years.
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Nsar
Humph old son, have you really weighed up the costs here?

Dunno where you are in Cheshire but at best that's a 300 mile round trip ie a cost of about £120 at 40p per mile (ie true cost of driven mile).

With only the merest effort at pre-planning I can get train tickets Manchester to Euston at peak time for about £150, a journey I do every week, I suspect the same ticket would be a wee bit cheaper from Crewe. If I was properly organised with my diary I could shave a bit more off.

Up to you of course but the time and aggro behind the wheel before you've even got to work makes driving to London an absolute non-starter for me.

Intrigued to know how you will get all your clobber onto a bike - post photos!
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - old crocks
Intrigued to know how you will get all your clobber onto a bike - post

What's the problem!

Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Happy Blue!

Knowing a little about what you do and where you live, I can understand the temptation to drive, as with light traffic the journey may only take 2 and a quarter hours to bottom of the M1. But the thought of driving down the Finchley Road fills me with dread.

Possibility of parking at Milton Keynes and picking up the Virgin NW into Euston? Surely you can pick up the train at Stoke and be in the office within 90 mins?
Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
I know Espada. I'm just genetically disposed to economy I guess ......

Northern outskirts of London to Kings Cross? - Alby Back
You are of course quite right Nsar. I'm trying very hard not to concentrate too hard on the numbers but I can convince myself that using my current car is cheapish as it has almost certainly stopped depreciating at 7.5 years old and heading for 170,000 miles.

I know the train is the real answer but that involves interacting with, well, people.......Some of them are alright I s'pose.......


Northern Cyprus - update for El Hacko - daveyjp
In Vol 298 El Hacko asked about a trip to Northern Cyprus.

My parents have just returned after 2 weeks. It's six years since they were last there and it is still excellent, but should this part of Cyprus become part of the EU they feel it's charm will fade. They were near Kyrenia.

Lots of money being spent in preparation for EU membership - new roads, infrastructure etc. Still cheap - pint £1.60 (main resorts in southern Cyprus now charge up to £6 since joining euro), meals very cheap as are supermarkets.

Avoid any pubs or restaurants which aren't locally owned - you will get ripped off and most of the ripping off is being done by the British to the British who are charging southern Cyprus prices as Northern Cyprus largely operates in euros.

Roads are OK, roadsigns barely exist. Bad news is they have speed cameras everywhere - more than the UK, good news is driving a hire car you'll never get a ticket - too much trouble sorting it out. It took their apartment owner 8 months to get a ticket. Caught in September last year, notification arrived in May 2009!

Flights go to Larnaca now, so no headaches with having to land in Turkey first.
Northern Cyprus - update for El Hacko - El Hacko
many thanks, DJP - that's very useful info. If it's poss to find out, where did they stay and did they go on package deal; if so, via whom?

Northern Cyprus - update for El Hacko - daveyjp
I'll get the info for you when I see them.

They were saying they intend going back next year but will DIY - cheap flight to Larnaca and a direct deal with the villa owner.

Old TV Listings - Chris S
Are there any websites that list old TV programs? I'm trying to settle a dispute about what was on TV a couple of weeks ago.
Old TV Listings - L'escargot

Old TV Listings - Chris S
Normal procedure - ordering wine in a Restaurant? - Armitage Shanks {p}
I have done this a lot over the years, and have some slight knowledge of wine. I reckon it normally goes like this

1. Order a bottle of wine
2. It is brought to the table, unopened, to confirm that it is what was ordered.
3. It is opened, one may or may not be shown the cork.
4. A small amount is poured into the host's glass for tasting and approval.
5. If approved, other glasses are filled, host's is topped up and the drinking commences.
6. If it is a chilled wine an ice bucket is provided to keep it cool.

I was in France over the weekend and went to what can only be described as a fairly expensive restaurant (100 euros for 2)

I ordered a bottle of wine and it was brought to the table, opened and appeared to be not what I had ordered. The label said "Rouge" and I had ordered Rose. If they hadn't opened the bottle it could have gone back into stock. I chose another rose and this was produced already open and nobody poured me any to try. It was put on the table, help yourself and no ice bucket.

I think another good reason for bringing the bottle to the table, unopened, is that it proves it isn't an empty bottle with a good label on it, filled with some local cat's wee, to make a bit of extra profit!

Any thoughts from BR members better travelled or informed than me?
Normal procedure - ordering wine in a Restaurant? - JH
just to prove that I am neither "better travelled or informed", you don't put red on ice. Do you? Otherwise I'm with you. But I'd rather have a beer anyway :-)
Normal procedure - ordering wine in a Restaurant? - Mapmaker
Some reds chill nicely. But I think he was referring to the Rosé.

I would agree with procedure. If the bottle isn't opened at the table, send it back and ask for the next one to be...
Normal procedure - ordering wine in a Restaurant? - Lud
I may have posted a version of this before, so don't read it again if it rings a bell.

Bored with the hotel food one evening, I went out with a couple of French Medecins sans frontieres, another hack and a couple of nurses or embassy staff to try a Sudanese restaurant people said had appeared in the capital of Chad after a rather thin year during which the town had been severely damaged by fighting between political groups (which I had not witnessed).

The restaurant had a sort of chopped meat and peas dish that was quite pleasant with rice. But being a Muslim outfit had no wine or beer. A boy was sent down the road to a bar for a sample bottle of red wine. It came in a Johnnie Walker bottle, straight from the coldest depths of a fridge. Glasses were poured and sips taken. There was a very long silence. Eventually one of the surgeons spoke, saying in a trying-to-be-fair-although-not-best-pleased sort of way: 'Well: it's wine, anyway.'

Quite strong wine actually, that tasted a great deal better after ten minutes when it had warmed up to room (or rather verandah) temperature. Soon more bottles were being called for in a much more cheerful way. French colonial red wines sold in bulk - probably Moroccan in this case - can be remarkably robust, as are or were Russian ones.

Normal procedure - ordering wine in a Restaurant? - deepwith
If you are presented with a bottle already opened, no matter where you are, send it back. It is an old scam designed to get you to pay mega-euros for cheap wine. Also, insist that a bottle is opened in your presence. If the waiter opens the bottle out of your sight, ask for the cork; it should correspond to the bottle just opened and should be wet. If it isn't, make a fuss, very loudly, especially if you are overseas!

You can chill a Beaujolias - not necessarily in an ice bucket!
Normal procedure - ordering wine in a Restaurant? - bathtub tom
I don't go with the tasting and sniffing the cork malarky, I'm not expert enough, although I've only ever sent back a few bottles that were very obviously off.

I'd certainly expect it to be opened at the table, unless it was being bought by the glass.

Normal procedure - ordering wine in a Restaurant? - Nsar
Just to be absolutely correct......when the wine is poured into your glass, you are not being invited to taste it, but to smell it, simply to verify that the bottle is not corked.

Swilling the wine around in the glass and then tasting it simply proves that you don't know what you're doing.

I can recommend some sweet red wines from the languedoc which are slightly fortified when chilled are the perfect accompaniment to petits fours. Mas Amiel is particularly good.

Wine tasting encore - Optimist
Nsar wrote:
Just to be absolutely correct......when the wine is poured into your glass, you are not being invited to taste it, but to smell it, simply to verify that the bottle is not corked. >>

Where does that come from? A wine can be lightly corked and you won't be able to identify that until and unless you taste it, I'd have thought. A heavily corked wine will be picked up by a decent sommellier or waiter as the bottle is opened.

So swirling the wine around and having a taste is not only ok, it's also sensible if you're paying a decent sum of money. If the sommellier or Nsar don't like it they can do the other thing. If I'm paying, I'll taste.

Edited by Pugugly on 20/07/2009 at 20:35

Canon 450D Flash - audiA6tdi
I have a Canon 450D SLR camera. If i add an external flash can the camera still be operated in 'auto' mode or will i have to set the flash up seperatly?

Canon 450D Flash - Stuartli
If used with the E-TTL II auto flash with EX-series Speedlites.

One example:


You can see the infra red panel on the flash gun that reads the reflected flash output from the subject and cuts it off as appropriate for correct exposure.

My Nikon FX401 body and 28-200mm Tamron zoom combination works in this way with a Cobra flash gun; the flash gun has a push-pull section over the flash to provide maxium coverage for wide angle right through to telephoto lens settings. I bought them in 1995...:-)

Edited by Stuartli on 20/07/2009 at 15:12

Canon 450D Flash - SpamCan61 {P}
I suspect the answer will depend very much on the external flash and whether it can be controlled by the camera.

Edited by SpamCan61 {P} on 20/07/2009 at 15:11

Canon 450D Flash - rtj70
For any of us to answer this we'd need to know what flash you were using. The camera can control flashes.

My dSLR can control wirelessly a number of flashes simultaneously but you again need the right flash... It programmes them by flashing the inbuilt flash and they respond.
Canon 450D Flash - Stuartli
>>..that reads the reflected flash output from the subject..>>

Memory playing tricks a bit - the infra red beams are used by the Nikon's automatic focus mode in poor light conditions and the reflected flash is read by the camera's TTL exposure system.

Whatever, it always proved spot on, apart from the times when I occasionally forgot the match the flashgun's zoom head to the zoom lens's focal length setting...:-(

The flashgun is a Cobra 700 AF, which cost me £70 at the time, but worth it due to its very high light output.

A help link to match Canon cameras to flash guns:


Canon flashgun examples:

www.parkcameras.com/c/40/Canon-Compatible-Flashgun...l (not cheap!)