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The Fifth Tat List
Extra-special offer: would anyone like an Apple Pro Keyboard over which I spilt some ayran yesterday? It hasn't even started to smell of sour milk yet. Update: if it works after being dish-washed, we'll keep it as a spare, so it's off the tat list. Update 2: All tat is gone now.

In other news, we have:

A much-loved HP Laserjet 4+ with duplexing unit, with 18Mb of RAM. Perhaps needing new rollers or something, it tends to crinkle the pages. It's had relatively light use for a 4+, which are, I'm assured, 'good for at least a million pages'. I've replaced it with a business inkjet; I will let you know in a few months if this was my worst mistake ever. This is a big heavy printer and you would probably need to collect.

A microwave device for boiling an egg, in the shape of a chicken. It's YH6003 on this page

A starfish. Yes, a starfish. It's dead of course, about 7" in diameter, five points. I got it to decorate the bathroom. I must have been mad. Memo: we do not need pointless mathoms.

A small oil filled electric radiator. You put it in a cold area of the house and plug it in and it heats it up, expensively. I think it's rated at 2kw. These are very very useful if you, eg, have a house with no central heating or where the central heating doesn't get to every room.

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Put the keyboard through the dish washer (just water, not detergent) and leave it to dry for a couple of weeks. It'll probably work.

Even if it's an Apple Pro keyboard with integral USB ports? Oh, well, what harm can it do? (puts keyboard in dishwasher and waits...)

My printer having died, may I pretty-please bagsie the Laserjet? Can collect...

It's yours. It's very heavy -- you need to collect it in a car. It would help if you had a speaker-to-printers handy -- I think it needs a good clean and new pickup rollers.

Before I said 'it needs a good clean and new pickup rollers'. What it needs, I think, is this kit from the very wonderful fixyourownprinter.com. This is the exact fault the printer has, currently semi-intermittent. So that gives you an idea how much money you're in for. I don't know of a UK equivalent site, but when I've ordered from fixyourownprinter before, they've sent stuff quickly by airmail at cost (which wasn't high because it was a very tiny kit).

Although you can buy new laser printers for about £100, the LJ4+ is built like the proverbial, and a tinkerer can use approaches like this to keep them running more or less forever.

It has one more slight fault I should have mentioned, which is that it gives a 'paper jam' error when the paper tray is empty. It's cos I previously lost a little piece of plastic that acts as the paper empty sensor. Solution is to put more paper in and then open and close the top of the printer.

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