the gardener

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the gardener last won the day on October 30 2017

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  1. SNaCR is correct. Each digit in a bar code is made up of 4 bars, either a black bar, a white bar, a black bar, a white bar (on the right hand side of the barcode) or a white bar, a black bar, a white bar, a black bar (on the left hand side of the barcode) Each bar, black or white, can have a width of either 1,2,3 or 4. The number six is made up of bars of 1,1,1,4 widths. I have marked in the picture the part that represents a 6. The longer bars Carl has found are guide bars which delineate where to read from. They do look a bit like the number 6 in that they do have the 1,1,1 bit but the 4th width is not correct. In the example we have 1,1,1,1 and 1,1,1,3 and 1,1,1,infinity. Plus of course we only get even that if we read the barcode incorrectly because in reality those longer lines are just spacers.
  2. Well, my son's new passport just dropped through the letterbox. Its burgundy and not blue but it does not have the words 'European Union' on it. 😊
  3. With the saving you make by not having the system power-flushed you'll be able to buy any replacement radiators and also the tools for job with money left over for a night out in the pub.
  4. That's a bit of an ancient timer but I'm sure it works just fine. The radiators don't look too ancient. I'm guessing that the plastic tray underneath one of them is to catch water from a leak from under the black tape? It might be an obvious leak in which case it's a silly question but are you sure that is the source of the leak? It's more likely to leak from the bleed valve at the top. Water could be trickling down the edge of the rad and then along the bottom and dripping off there. Probably not but if you aren't sure then tape a bit of kitchen roll to the rad wrapped around the edge and underneath the bleed valve. It'll show you if the water is leaking from above. Anyway - changing the radiator is a piece of piss but if you are really useless at DIY then best to get someone in to change it. As for cold spots - do you have any? If you do then I assume you have actually bled all the radiators already? If not then do that. Get a radiator key and while the heating is off go round each radiator in turn (start with the one furthest from the boiler) and undo the bleed valve and let any air hiss out. Be ready with a rag to mop up any water that comes out. Close the bleed valve and move on to the next radiator. That should improve things. Run the heating for a good while and check to see if it's better. Whilst it's hot, make sure each inlet valve on every radiator is set to max (the one with the numbers on them - hopefully you have them) and feel the inlet/outlet pipes to each radiator. One should be hotter than the other, if not then something's wrong. Maybe the system wasn't balanced properly. If you have no turnable valves on the rads then you'll have to find out which is inlet/outlet by starting up the system and feeling which pipe gets hot first - that'll be the inlet. To balance them (to save me typing) follow a guide like this: https://www.homebuilding.co.uk/how-to-balance-radiators/ You don't really need the digital thermometer just gauge it by hand.
  5. Keep the boiler. It's a glow-worm and they are pretty indestructible and reliable. Parts are cheap as chips compared to newer boilers. Your one is a Glow-worm Micron 30FF which has a SAP seasonal efficiency rating of 76.6%. This is pretty good. I used to have a glow-worm Fuelsaver 45F which only had a 68% efficiency and was manufactured until 1991 and it was still going strong in 2013. It needed a new thermocouple every few years (less than a tenner) and that was It really. Had it serviced about 3 times in 12 years. The Micron 30FF is a Non-Condensing Conventional boiler with a maximum power output of 8.79kw that uses Gas as its fuel source. Manufactured From 1999 - 2002. Given that your boiler has a 76.6% efficiency against a new boiler that might get 90% it's really not worth changing. Firstly because the efficiency ratings are mostly bollocks as they depend on the whole installation being optimal and the return temperature being correct. The minute you switch off a couple of radiators / set the Thermostatic Radiator Valve low then the water returning to the boiler is too hot and the efficiency goes out the window. These ratings are awarded based upon laboratory testing where the return temperature, air temp and other variables are controlled and the boiler is running at full load. None of these things will be so in the average real-world setup. As for your radiators - a power flush is an utter waste of money. Can you post a picture of your radiators? Are they the sort of ancient beasts we used to have in our Victorian-era school? Great big cast-iron behemoths? If so then I can believe they might be gunked-up. Best thing to do is to drain down the system - should be a drain cock at the lowest point of the system (might even be outside into a drain). Take off each radiator in turn - very easy - undo the pipes and then life off the wall. Take the radiator outside, stand it on end, shove a hosepipe into one end and turn on the tap. That'll unblock it. If it the water doesn't flow freely, junk the radiator and buy a new one - Stelrad are good (and UK manufactured). The actual copper pipes are very unlikely to be blocked but you can also flush them through with a hosepipe to if you so desire. Once you've put all the radiators back on - might as well fit new valves and TRVs to each one whilst you've got them off - refill the system ensuring you add inhibitor to the header tank. One thing that might be worth doing is putting a timer on the boiler. I don't see one installed in the picture. Have a heating engineer install one - shouldn't be too dear - then you can set the timer so the boiler only comes on at set times rather than staying on all day.
  6. Fuck off. Fuck off again. Then fuck off some more. When you've fucked off as far as you can go then make an extra special effort to fuck off even more. There. That's a series of statements for the lords.
  7. These racists are good at spelling aren't they? If I didn't know any better I'd have thought they were written by a barrister.
  8. Primary schools should not need any computers for the pupils. It's pointless as nothing they will learn will be relevant in a few years. It really is an utter waste. I work in IT and am nearly 50. Nobody my age used computers much at school. Our secondary school had 1 Commodore Pet during my first three years there. In my 4th year they got about 10 BBC micros. My computer science O level concentrated on theory and programming in BASIC / assembly language. Many hours of lessons learning about registers etc. No fancy graphics bullshit. Most of my computer learning came from my ZX spectrum at home however. Armed with this knowledge I went into an IT career. Never used a word processing package / spreadsheet till university/starting work and then it was all self-taught. Ban computers from primary schools.
  9. Just to add clarity, £360,000 spent on pension costs out of a budget of £2,250,000 = 16%. These figures are from 2017. The pension funding is going up to 23.5% next year. Not sure where the extra £170,000 is coming from. Oh fuck. I hope the government are going to up the grant or else that's 5 teacher equivalents for the chop. Failing that it means manage older teachers out of the job and replace with NQTs. Rinse and repeat. Oh wait! I've just looked at next year's budget. It's lower! Oh dear!
  10. Just thought I'd give you a rep for the 80% figure. That's spot on looking at the figures from my school.
  11. Where could the school save? I suppose it could reduce the number of teachers. There are only 15 classes so I suppose they could chop the 3 specialist teachers and some of the 6 management teachers (the 3 + 6 are only 7 FTE). Trouble is then who would do what they do? The class teachers? No way do they have the time. That leaves just the head and deputy and TBH they are absolutely flat out too. The 6 management staff are essentially in training to be deputy heads/heads of the future, having been released from class teaching for a period in order to concentrate on managing/coordinating 2 year groups each - in effect running a mini school within a school. The other 2 do special needs coordination - the class teachers just could not cope with this. Savings could be made by not letting kids with special needs into mainstream schools and instead send them to special schools. Much of these 'special needs' however are things like dyslexia ADHD and so on. These kids don't really need to be in a special school, the real question is, do they need to be in receipt of any extra help at all? Probably not is the answer. Staff costs are £1,800,000 out of the budget of £2,225,000 so 80%. The only way to save is to cut staff. To cut staff you have to cut the bureaucracy and the remit of the staff. Just to add, the mentality of the school isn't to save money, it's to spend money. That's a quote from the head. Fair enough I suppose, they're given money and they aren't meant to save it up and leave it in the bank.
  12. 6 teachers in the management team (not including head & deputy) 15 class teachers, 3 specialist teachers 20 LSAs/Classroom Assistants. From my figures, excluding the head and deputy head there are 22 other teaching staff sharing plus the 20 LSAs sharing £937,000 (head and dep = £200,000 less the £37,000 pension contributions which I didn't itemise). The LSAs are pretty much close to minimum wage ~ £12k each = £240,000. This leaves £697,000 for the 22 teachers = £31,681 for each teacher which sounds about right. Teachers start on about £22,000 and increment each year for 6 years and end up on about £32,000 max unless they take on additional responsibilities which can bring them up to about £45,000. About 14 of the teaching staff are long-serving and will be on the max salary + extra responsibilities pay.
  13. Well yes, I think that legally the amount is provided for the child it does allow for the resources provided to be used by other children, e.g. a LSA (Learning Support Assistant) can provide help to others. There is some flexibility in there which makes for some difficult conversations with parents who are expecting absolutely exclusive support. The money does follow their child but the school has some flex in how it provides that support and thus meet the needs of the child. Note: the above doesn't contradict my earlier example as some children have such complex needs that they really do have an exclusive LSA following them around all day but this is not that common (at least in my experience)