Just another day in paradise where and I had the opportunity to fly a home in Stanwood Washington. This home over-looks the Stanwood valley / waterfront and is so close to town and services which makes it such a great home, not including the new carpet, paint, gutters and move-in ready status. It was a great flight and can wait to do another one.
Recently, I had the opportunity to test and review a PULUZ 16 in 1 GoPro Accessory Kit. Being new to the review scene, the opportunity allowed me to test more GoPro products, which I’m a total fan boy of, and improve the format for my product reviews. But enough about that.
The PULUZ GoPro Accessory Kit comes complete with 16 different mounting options which doesn’t include the hard travel case.
Included Mounts Are:
Female Tri-Pod Mounts
Standard GoPro Mounts
Cloth Travel Bag
All this for less than $50.
A darn good deal for anyone looking to get into the GoPro hobby or just add some affordable mounts to their collection. Also, the PULUZ kit will make a great holiday gift idea for the GoPro fanatic in your family.
Tthe most fun was testing the suction cup mount driving down from Stevens Pass. It would have been much cooler since the latest round of 5.3l Silverado mods yet it did rain during the drive.
There is still time to capture some video; however, it will be hit-and-miss with the winter weather setting in.
So kick back and check on the review and in the video description the video can be skipped ahead to the truck testing.
The install went smooth and being on a time crunch, I failed to take pictures of all the steps.
Step 1: We removed the factory radiator shroud along with the clutch fan gaining access to the water pump. The only notable here was getting a pipe wrench on the clutch fastener since we didn’t have wrench. Removal of the clutch fan fastener took little effort, surprisingly.
*Pro Tip: The thermostat on a 2003 factory 5.3l includes the water neck, they’re one unit. A 160 degree thermostat was recommended yet opted for a 180 due to Washington winters.
Step 2: Removed the K&N Cold Air Kit from the factory throttle body and moved onto removing the factory throttle body.
Step 3: Installed the replacement water pump, thermostat, new air conditioning and rotating assembly belt.
Step 4: Installed the mass air sensor.
Step 5: With the BBK throttle body, the factory linkage had to be pulled out of the factory throttle body to use in the new unit. However, the pulling tools supplied by BBK were junk. So, doing the next best thing, the factory throttle was drilled as to punch out the linkage because the factory throttle body was being tossed. The linkage then assembled and fit into the BBK easily and works good to this day. Then the factory gasket was reused since formed and still fit nicely onto the factory intake. After installing that portion was done.
Step 6: My buddy installed the PCM wiring harness for a 3 relay and plugged the pins into the ECU slots. While he did that, I installed the LS series dual fans onto the radiator and moved some factory wiring to further improve the installs cleanliness.
Step 7: Connected the remaining water hoses, filed with water (allowing time for the radiator to fill), connected the K&N air tubes to the mass air sensor and throttle body.
Step: 8: The ECU was sent to PMC for tuning. The tune included the fan switch activation and settings (since the ECU had a factory flash) for a Monster SS transmission,BBK headers and Flowmaster mufflers, BBK throttle body, Granatelli mass air scensor, 180 degree thermostat, K&N cold air, and MSD coils. Also, the ECU was set for 92 octane since that is what we have in the PNW.
The power increase was good. The motor runs smooth and has more throttle response, with a slightly audible throttle body whistle. With the Monster transmission, from 1st to 2nd gear shifts, the truck either barks hard (sounding hella cool) or breaks traction and posi’s out a bit. I’m impressed.
Based on ‘seat of the pants’ feel, the Silverado is a respectable 315hp yet wouldn’t mind seeing a dyno sheet – maybe this year.
The work took about 7 hours from start to finish with delays caused by beer and bullshitting. It was really straight forward and good for any amateur enthusiast since the only fluid drain came from the water pump install.
The Kennedy Space Center wasn’t on our to-do list when visiting Disney World; however, its amazing how a thunderstorm can quickly change plans and ideas into something more profound.
Upon arriving at Coco Beach, the clouds rolled in and the rain began to poor. Not just a little rain with signs of clearing. No no. I’m a massive down pour that showed zero signs of letting up.
Being where we were, the hammers were put down and the vehicle made for destination Kennedy Space Center.
The lines were nil, as no one was there and it was already late in the day, and we got right in and jogged to the covered area where the tour buses waited.
Soaked and soggy, we enjoyed a dry cruise around the facility while viewing the various launch pads, Space X’s building, and then arriving at the Apollo / Saturn V Center.
Below are the two video and pictures from the the Center.
One thing I missed was the Space Shuttle Atlantis. After leaving the Saturn V viewing area we were ushered into a gift shop. The staff didn’t even bother to tell us that the Shuttle was in an adjoining building, probably because they were ready to go home and not to helpful.
I was very bummed since I didn’t get any pictures nor get to see the shuttle in person.
Anyhow, the rest of the exhibits were really fun to look at while taking pictures and video. Below are the pictures and videos from our Kennedy Space Center visit.
Well here it is, our Disney World & Universal Studios long version GoPro edit. A lot of time has gone into this video and it still leaves me a bit unsatisfied with its outcome. Yet I cannot complain as its pretty good.
The vacation video is 5:32 long, hence the long version, and includes two songs, pictures from the Disney PhotoPass, and GoPro videos from all the parks.
Hope you enjoy watching as I did making it and please subscribe and leave a comment below. Cheers!
Epcot Theme Park isn’t ride heavy like the rest of Disney World yet it has a great feel. Epcot is a destination to see different cultures, experience food and drinks for that particular region, dancing, singing, street shows and more shopping. Like Disney hasn’t already given so many reason to spend money.
Upon entering the park, we stopped out front of Space Ship Earth for PhotoPass pictures, yet we didn’t go inside due to wait times. In our pictures, I was wearing monster aviator glasses since loosing the Oakley’s at Universal’s E.T. Boo. I loved those sunglasses.
We took it slow, stopping in some shops to purchase collectables for home. I picked up 2 gold and 1 copper plated tickets to commemorate the trip and the family shared in a 1955 commemory picture for mom’s birthday.
Our first stop was Mexico. Inside the great pyramid, which reminded me a lot of Chitzen Itza, we road a rafting ride (tour) through the pyramid’s interior and saw different sights of Mexico, and were treated to a digital fireworks display. The tour ended and I was already thirsty. You know, its really hot in Florida. Since no one was up for a tequila shot, it was margaritas all around.
*Pro Tip: Watch out for scooter people. Our youngest was ran over leaving her heals all tore up by a lady letting her grandchild drive.
Onto China and more PhotoPass pictures. Inside what looked like a Beijing Temple, was so-so comedic acrobat show and we glad it didn’t require additional costs.
We didn’t stop to rest much until arriving in Germany. I almost bought a stein for the collection but refrained. However, I didn’t refrain from buying a bratwurst and sauerkraut to postpone the hungry feeling. We toured the German shops, took more pictures (MOAR) and mom couldn’t help bring up how I was born in Germany.
After stopping in Italy for pictures and the American Adventure for a brief concern that included some of the kid’s favorite songs, it was onto France. In France we ordered soft serve ice cream and watched a street show balancing act that was more impressive the closer we stood.
By this time, the family was pretty darn tired of walking, the heat, and the crowds of people. So, to fool mom, and not let her know of the painting we purchased, the ladies and kids took the tram to magic Kingdom and Travis and I drove the Suburban back over.
Travis and I stopped to buy a 24 oz. Beer that we drank in Magic Kingdom’s parking lot prior to meeting up with everyone. Mad props were given by other guests thinking the beer was the ticket.
Nearing the end of the Disney World trip, the last park on our agenda was Hollywood Studios. Joy really wanted to venture for one ride, The Twlight Zone Tower of Terror.
I don’t know how many times I’ve seen the Tower of Terror movie and watched the ghosts of The Hollywood Tower Hotel relive, if that is even the case, their ill-faited journey. The 5 guests never made it to the Tip Top Party and now it was our turn to brave the ghostly hotel lobby, dark and spooky corridors of the hotel’s underbelly, and the ride up to the 12th floor.
Like the Doctor Doom’s Fear Fall, the Tower of Terror was a negative G drop style ride. What wasn’t expected was the scene staging lead up. Starting in the lobby and heading into a study, the group found its way down to the hotel’s basement. The boiler was lit and glowing with menace while we winded through to the service elevators.
Taking our place in the very elevator that Carolyn, Gilbert, Sally, Emeline, and Dewey met their fate, it was time to see if we would survive. LOL. Well we did but that was after taking plummeting falls that gave me the hebbie jebbies.
Now that the terror was over, it off to see Indiana Jones. The stage was like I remembered. The opening scene of advoiding the rolling boulder and dancing around the spike trap. Ah memories relived. During the second scene, it was a all out street-fight in the city center with spectators turned actors filling in the scenes. Everyone enjoyed the show yet wished it was a bit longer.
The group split up to do their own thing. We decided to stroll through the Hollywood Studios taking in the sights and enjoying the park. After spending time eating, shopping, and taking in some smaller attractions, it was time for another coaster.
The wait at the Rock n Roller Coaster was an hour an a half and we toughed it out. Arriving in the building and entering the studio, we were treated to Areosmith (via a video screen) and a stretched out Cadillac to ride in. I sat first car second row with the oldest girl while Joy and the youngest, along with my cousin, behind me.
The music was cranked up, more coasters need to play rock n roll, and it was ready for action. However, instead of climbing a ramp then dropping for speed, the Rock n Roller Coaster launched straight ahead then ripping through some corks, loops, and underneath streets and road signs. What blast and I think having music to listen to made the coaster more fun.
Being pretty amped up after that coaster, I had a beer. It was a damn good beer too being that I was sweaty, hot, and a,ll around grimy. The day ended by watching the Frozen show and squeaking more Photo Pass pictures.
What a blast. Hollywood Studios is a smaller park, compared to Universal Studios and Magic Kingdom, which made the day not so long. I highly recommend Hollywood Studios as part of a Disney Adventure.
Animal Kingdom was high on Joy’s must do list. I was wanting to spend time there as well yet had no real idea what the park featured. Unlike local zoos, this place was fun, not a little but a lot of fun due to the park’s scale and elaborate costume, park layout, and ride designs – what else would be expected from Disney?
Starting with pictures back-dropped by the Tree of Life and trail map in hand, it was Safari time.
We trekked through Africa towards the Kilimanjaro Safari. For the safari, we road in a beast of a truck that peaked at around 6mph. The ride was bump which made picture taking a bit difficult. However, we did see lions, tigers, a good handful of giraffes, a rhino, some elephants, antelope, and others I didn’t know. Since we were sitting in the back row, we could freely turn around and shoot GoPro pictures and videos. Yet the ride was really bumpy and the truck didn’t stop much to get a steady shot, unless you’re fast.
After the Kilimanjaro Safari, the family boarded a train to Rafiki’s Planet Watch where the kids worked on their Merritt badges. The family wanted to get going so it back to Africa and more of Animal Kingdom.
We strolled onto Asia for the short self guided tour through Maharajah Jungle Trek. It was great walk with seeing Komodo Dragons and such. Yet, shortly into the trek it was time to unpack the ponchos.
The Florida sky decided to open up and start dropping more rain than we’ve seen all year back in Washington. With the deLLuge showing no sign of letting up, everyone ducked into the gift shops for candy, Disney swag, and gifts for folks back home.
This is when we decided to end our day at Animal Kingdom.
Arriving back at the condo, the family all took a seat, grabbed a drink, and jumped on their electronics and started to kill time. Feeling a bit under fulfilled it was kind of gloomy around the condo. However, after about 2 hours the rain subsided, Joy, Travis, the girls, and I loaded into the Suburban and ventured back to Animal Kingdom.
Why? One ride, Expedition Everest.
Having to admit, I was a bit nervous riding Expedition Everest yet the kids were doing it, so I manned up, LOL. It was really fun and is definitely helped getting over my coaster fear. Below is a POV video of the Expedition Everest roller coaster which I can be heard panting and being a bit on the scared side.
Expedition Everest Roller Coast (POV) Full Length
Travis and I ordered a beer afterwards while Joy and the girls road some additional rides. The beer was really good and helped calm the shaking nerves while we slowly walked to the Suburban.
Mickie and I have been really busy with real estate. In July alone, we sold 6 homes totaling over $2 million in property value. Crazy huh? Well, the real estate market shows no signs of slowing down and recently we’ve been working out on Camano Island. Here is our latest video home tour which is a Camano Island custom that has Port Susan views and more. Enjoy the show.
In our 4th park trip, we elected for Typhoon Lagoon as to break from the hot and humid Orlando air. A short drive from Windsor Palms, Typhoon Lagoon is a water park that offers so much for every age. Being 25 years since the last visit, the family was anxious to relive fond memories and fun times.
The night before, I read many forums, blogs, and park rules regarding cameras and getting no closer to good answers. Many UK forums said video cameras were allowed, some blogs said no video cameras, and the park rules were not clear either way.
Instead of knowing, I took the chance and brought the Hero 4, a 3+ for a backup, and decided to use to film until staff said otherwise. Well it didn’t take long before I just asked a staff member what Typhoon Lagoon’s video camera policy was. Here are the basics: GoPros are allowed at Typhoon Lagoon yet not all mounts are.
GoPoles, selfie sticks, or any other extending style camera poles are not allowed since they can damage the water slide’s and wave pool’s lining, and/or hurt others. On the slides, GoPros can either be handheld or on a GoPro Knuckles, or similar mount, as the head strap and chestie could come into contact with the slide lining. Other than those items, Typhoon Lagoon’s staff had zero problems with a GoPro.
OK, onto the good stuff.
Like the previous park arrival times, arrival was set for an hour prior to park opening. The Typhoon’s staff allowed guests to pay and enter the water park prior to opening. Even though guests where allowed in the park, the staff had us hold position near the main crossover bridges until 9am. We planned on getting some prime beach sitting that had shade, access to food and drinks, and being close to the wave pool.
The gang settle down on the outer rim of Blustering Bay, a area near the the Bay Slides to the left of the park. Unpacked and ready to go, it was waterslide time.
To get warmed up, the kids usually needed that, the Keelhaul Falls, a single person tube ride was voted on. Not being all that long, and not all that fast, the ride snaked down through the makeshift canyon to a calm landing pool. All jazzed up, the kids could hardly wait for more. Next stop was Mayday Falls and then off to Gangplank Falls.
The lines weren’t anything like Magic Kingdom or Universal Studios so riding and sliding over-and-over wasn’t a problem. After those slides, it was back to the wave pool.
Attempt after attempt, I couldn’t get the right timing when the wave launched, starting the swim, and getting stiffened up to body surf the 5′ wave (felt more like 6 feet). Typhoon Lagoon’s wave pool never gets old yet. Even being in decent shape and a strong swimmer, I couldn’t swim back and forth and dog paddle long enough to learn the wave-timing. I had to take a break. I think being short and not able to touch didn’t help either.
Being worn out, it was cocktail time. Let’s Go Slurpin’ served up a tasty Tequila Sunrises, cold Coors Lights, and more savory beverages that cooled us right down. Mmmmm, Tequila Sunrise.
Now where was I? Oh yea.
Rested and cooled down, it was off to explore Typhoon Lagoons right side.
Storm Slides were on the radar. here we.After a bit of a line, we all road down but the slides weren’t the best. Not for their speed or design, but for there condition. The seems in the slide joints rubbed the back really hard leaving red marks. We moved on.
To the Shark Reef. The two girls wigged out due to the Shark Reef’s water being so cool. It felt glorious after the peristant Orlando swampy heat and it was real refreshing after the chlorine and the condo’s pool water. The reef was shorter than remembered but the sea life was good. Hammerheads (two) and rays glided effortlessly through the water and all the while, the GoPro was pointed right at them. Hopefully the video comes out. I could have swam much longer due to the water’s coolness and the change of pace.
While we debated where to go, Joy found the Crash ‘n’ Gusher duo innertube slides. At first, the kids were worried yet afterwards, they were great. Also at Crush ‘n’ Gusher, the Disney Photo Pass photographers snapped away and we ended with with so many fun pictures. Again, get the PhotoPass.
By now a few hours had passed and the weather was showing signs of changing. The gang packed up and we all headed out right when the thunder and lightening started.
The remaining part of the day was spent recounting everyone’s Typhoon Lagoon adventure over some cold beers at the condo.