Northern California Angora Guild

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Remember When: Pioneers of Blowing Angora

In the last posts, Susan Conley's name came up as the first person who used a Mini Circ to blow her English Angora in 1989. How it started, according to Susan, was that the blower had been in her barn for the sheep. She was suffering from arthritis; it was hard to use the slicker to groom her rabbits. She figured that if the blower was good for the sheep, it might also be good for her English Angora.

The rest is history.

The above was a picture taken in 1991 convention. Left is Sandy Kelly, then president of NCAG; the middle is Susan Conley and the right is Betty with her big hairdo. Betty subscribed to Susan's blowing method and bought a Mini Circ right after the 1989 convention but it took Sandy at least a year before she was convinced that she also needed a Mini Circ.

Neither Susan nor Sandy raises rabbits now. Both of them had a good run in their rabbit habits.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Pink vs Orange

There have been some interest expressed in knowing the difference between the Mini Circ and the two speed Metro AFTD blowers. Here are some side-by-side photos:

The two manufacturers use different ways to write the specification. The Metro specifies "4 HP peak power" while the Mini Circ says a "two stage 9.5 amp motor turbine". Hard to compare when there are two "languages" being used. From the feel and the results, Mini Circ seems to be a much stronger blower.

Mini Circ is slightly larger in size, heavier and has two very sturdy sawhorse type support; the Metro AFTD3 has 4 very little "feet" at the bottom; the unit would roll when one turns the switch on.

The top is Metro's blower hose made of vinyl over metal, flexible but also easy to deteriorate; the bottom is Mini Circ hose made of strong plastic, more substance but not as flexible. Mini Circ is harder to be carried around because it's heavier and the hose is long and somewhat stiff. Though it is a better built blower, it's not an ideal blower to be carried to shows. Metro is light weight and easy to carry but it is far less durable than the Mini Circ.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Pretty In Pink

Something pink in the box!

A pink blower, what a pretty sight.

My new Mini Circ.

My pretty-in-pink Mini Circ.

Betty says,

"In the 1989 ARBA convention in Tulsa, OK, I saw Angora being blown for the first time. Susan Conley used a Mini Circ blower on her rabbits and she won six classes out of her six entries. There was no comparison on the finish of the coats, slickers were no match for a blower. It's hard to imagine grooming the Angora show coats without a blower today, but we all used combs and slickers exclusively on those show coats prior to 1989.

Right after the convention, I ordered a Mini Circ and it arrived in November 1989. At that time Mini Circ came in blue only, thus it's referred to as the "blue blower" in the show circuit.

For the next 20 years, I use my Mini Circ at home but carry my Metro "orange blower" to shows. Mini Circ is heavier but definitely a much better built blower. After over 20 years of service, my "blue blower" finally shows its age and does not function well anymore. After replacing the machine brush and taking it apart, hubby and I decided it's time to give up on the oldie that has lasted longer than any of our cars and vans. Mini Circ now comes in various colors, I opted for a pink. I am happy that I now have a "pink blower" in addition to my other blowers."

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Where Are The Tomatoes

While the other parts of the country are experiencing an extreme hot summer, the Northern California area is going through the opposite: this is so far the coldest summer on record. While it is wonderful for the bunnies, it is hard to grow veggies.

Normally tomatoes are harvested with abundance in August, this year the tomatoes are still green and small. There's not enough sun and heat to ripen the tomatoes.

Zucchinis grow in almost any temperature; this is one of the very few veggies that are going onto the dinner table for home gardeners.

This is the daily harvest of Zucchinis out of three plants.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Old Coins In The Shanghai Museum

Alice took some pictures of very old money in the Chinese history when she toured the Shanghai Museum.

Warring State period during 475 BC - 221 BC. The coins are in the shape of knives, sure showed the condition of the country at that period of time.

These are also coins from the same period of 475 BC to 221 BC.

These are coins from the Xin (or Hsin) Dynasty during 9-23 AD.

This coin looks so much closer to the current coins; it is the money of Tang Dynasty during 618 to 907 AD.

These coins from the Song Dynastic of 960 to 1279 AD are very similar to those in Tang Dynasty.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Alice Goes To Shanghai

Alice recently took a trip to Shanghai, China. Shanghai is one of the largest city, population 13,831,900, in the world. Alice accompanied her husband, a top scientist in veterinarian medicine, to Shanghai for a speaking engagement.

She is sharing with us some of the pictures taken at the Shanghai Museum that houses collections of ancient Chinese art.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Tyler Loves Baby Pink Bunny

Tyler is the little brother of Dominique and Elsa, the sister showing team. He is too young to show in the ARBA shows but he sure tries hard to pick a bunny as his keeper. Their mom Gabrielle says,

"While most little boys try to sneak frogs and lizards into the house, Tyler tries to sneak 'Benji' in. I don't mind at all, but daddy's allergies sure do.....

Tyler always choose 'the baby pink bunny' out of the litter to be his. I don't mind him naming this one 'Benji' since this little guy is out of our G litter."