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This car, I like it. Another! - 2023 Tesla Model 3

Not quite a deja vu, but close.

The lease on my previous Model 3 is slowly coming to a close, and knowing this, this summer I sat down and took a long look at the current EV market in search of a new daily. Annoyingly, I found nothing more interesting than another Model 3 - despite all its shortcomings, for me it’s still the best daily driver out there. Others are slowly getting there, stuff like the Polestar 2 or the EV6 are very close - but ultimately, nothing beats the 3 when looking at factors important to me. So another one it is, for the next 3-4 years until something more interesting finally comes along (looking at you, Polestar - make the 6 at the Model 3 Performance cost/performance level, and we’re in business).

Front view

Originally posted on FinalGear Forums

Various 3D-printed home improvement items

I’ve been doing mostly home improvement / decoration stuff in the new apartment with the printer recently.

Some of the projects, probably missing a few smaller ones:

Housings for Ikea Tradfri and Styrbar (designed by myself) Zigbee light switches.

Ikea Skadis tool holders (+ hooks, more hooks, kitchen paper roll holder, screwdriver holder) for the workshop, and Oculus / gamepad holders for the computer desk.

When you don't want a Model Y - 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E

Mach-E at the dealership

Picked up mom’s new car yesterday. It’s an Extended Range RWD with the Tech Package 2 (all the things + pano glass roof) in an interesting color - I think it’s called Space White in the English-language markets; not really a white, but a very very light blue, that barely comes across on pictures, but looks quite good IRL in my opinion. I haven’t had the opportunity to drive it at all yet, but mom’s initial impressions seem to be very positive.

For now, I’m quite busy with work and other stuff until the weekend, so here’s hoping the 100% charge it was delivered with will be enough for her until then :D And then on Saturday I’ll teach her how to actually charge the thing. Home charging is happening at their place, but will take another couple months, so it’s public charging only for now - shouldn’t be an issue though, with the fairly massive range and how little she actually drives.

Originally posted on FinalGear Forums

Pipeline stoplight: making a GitLab CI pipeline status visible

A question I often run into in our trunk-based project at work is:

Can I push onto the current master, or is it broken again?

Yes, one should primarily concern oneself with the root cause of this question even existing and attempt to fix it, but I’m afraid in this project it’s a lost cause. So instead, I’ve taken to the next best thing I could think of: preventing myself and fellow team members from pushing more changes on a red pipeline and making things even worseβ„’.

Introducing the Pipeline Stoplight, or: “Don’t push unless this thing is green”:

Pipeline stoplight in its natural environment

Making it was a nice, fairly simple DIY exercise combining the following aspects:

  • 3D printing (the casing)
  • Electronics (simple circuit design and soldering)
  • Arduino programming (reading the pipeline status from the GitLab API via WiFi)

Hosting multiple sites or applications using Docker and NGINX reverse proxy with Letsencrypt SSL

small diagram

So I decided to rehost my homepage and a couple other web pages and apps on a new server. And since we’ve been using Docker and Compose for some projects at work, I thought, hey, this could be a neat clean setup for multiple apps hosted on a single machine without installing a ton of local dependencies and managing everything by hand. Here’s the story of how this went down, what I learned along the way, and how you can build the same setup without doing the same mistakes that I initially did.

3000km across Swiss and Italian Alps with the Model 3

7* days, 3000 km, a great ton of fun and memories that will last: this was my Alpine roadtrip across Italy and Switzerland.

Our overall track was a little chaotic :) We did not touch any highways, the whole trip was on B-roads only, with dozens of mountain passes and other twisty roads. It all started in Reutte, Austria, just south of the German border where I arrived from…

The wait was long enough: 2019 Tesla Model 3 Performance

Three years ago, I stood in line outside a small store in downtown Frankfurt to place a reservation on a car, with a bunch more excited people:

We didn’t know what it would look like. Only a few key facts were given: the base version would cost 35k$, it would be a sedan slightly smaller than a Model S, and it would have a base range of 210 miles. We each put down a small-ish payment, and got a number in an online account.

A long time later, the car could actually be configured and ordered in Germany. And as soon as I could, I put in an order through a leasing provider, to get one as a company car. One could not order the base version (and still cannot, except in the US) - but I didn’t intend to.

Some three months later still, after a lot of radio silence, I got a text: “Your Model 3 is ready for delivery”.

And finally, a week after that text, this happened:

Originally posted on FinalGear Forums

Lipo voltage monitoring with FrSky D-Receivers without sensors

Here I’d like to share a simple Lipo voltage monitoring setup, that I’m using in my Bixler with an FrSky D8R-XP receiver. No sensors or other electronics are required - only a single servo cable and two resistors, total value of about 50c + some soldering.

Bixler 2 with a FrSky Taranis running the described voltage monitoring setup

The FrSky D-series receivers have a great feature: the analogue telemetry inputs, called A1 and A2. On some receivers both are freely accessible (D8R-XP, D8R-Plus), on others the A1 port is hardwired to the internal receiver voltage, but the A2 port is always accessible for external connections (D4R-II). On those ports, a voltage of up to 3.3V can be connected. It is measured internally (0-3.3V = 0-100%) and transmitted via the telemetry uplink to your transmitter. Using a simple voltage divider soldered from two resistors, one can monitor the main battery voltage of a model (or any other voltage).