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Thomas Erickson RSS Feed (Lutz Fl and Felt Oklahoma)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Chargeable battery pack for remote controlled car works good, August 25, 2012
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:2.0 out of 5 stars 
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Bought this rechargeable battery pack for my kids and wife to drive their remote controlled Cadillac Escalade toy car. The car is over 2 feet long and heavy.The head lights blinked on and off and the kids could play the cars music and driving noises. Kind of loud. So with all this going on, the battery probably had a lot of draining of power.

After charging the battery pack a full day on slow charge and checking the battery did not get warm/hot (never did) we installed it in the car. On the battery pack is a two prong plastic connector we used for charging and for electrically connecting to the car.

The battery worked well and the kids and wife played with the car for about an hour before getting bored. I told them to keep on playing with it maybe tonight and tomorrow until the battery runs low.

You want to fully charge a NiCd battery and fully discharge it before recharging. That way the battery will not form a "memory" only allowing a limited charge and reduced running time.

So far the battery pack has worked well. Four stars


TV Superstars - Playstation 3
TV Superstars - Playstation 3
Offered by OrderEasyAs123
Price: $3.83
160 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars 21 year old daughter loved TV Superstars game on Play station 3, August 24, 2012
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
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MY 21 year old daughter and wife loved this game she put on our Play Station 3. Lots of action and you can become a star by putting your face on the figures with the Play station "eye" camera motion detector. She used the "wand" for her high stepping action.

The game is about being a TV superstar and you go through activities to raise you star level.You become a TV game show contestant and progress to becoming a super star. There is a cooking challenge...can you stand the heat stepping into the kitchen. Big Beat Kitchen. Also Super TV Acting Agency, DIY Raw, Lets Get Physical and Frock star.

INMO a good game for teennagers to get a little exercise and have fun. Nothing wrong with a little gaming fun a few hours a month.


Pacific Rising: The Emergence of a New World Culture
Pacific Rising: The Emergence of a New World Culture
by Simon Winchester
Edition: Hardcover
67 used & new from $0.01

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A little outdated.Simon's Pacific experiences, history, culture and views of the near future for the region, August 24, 2012
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I'm a fan of Simon Winchester's writings. Everything he has wrote has been 4 or 5 stars, See my reviews.

Pacific Rising is a good book, easily read with no boring parts. Some Pacific area maps too.Simon keeps the readers interest up with a mixture of his true stories of different areas of the Pacific he has visited and lived in. As of 1991 copyright he was living in Hong Kong. So some of the writings are a bit outdated, but almost all of the different countries growth prospects have come true. Japan and China have become financially stronger and the US financially weaker. Japan has become the worlds greatest debit country and the US the worlds largest credit nation.

Much history is shown as to the navigation of the Pacific Ocean,and many countries some I never knew existed. A lot of military action through the centuries is given and how countries economies connected to the Pacific either prospered or were crippled.

His experiences as a world wide reporter are interesting and add a human touch to the book.

I especially liked his section on the outback in Australia.

I would of rated the book 5 stars but it is a little outdated so 4 1/3 stars. Still a good book with lots of information and stories for the reader to increase his knowledge of the Pacific Ocean, different people culture, military history and future growth and financial growth prospects of Pacific countries.


Tom Custer: Ride to Glory (Frontier Military Series)
Tom Custer: Ride to Glory (Frontier Military Series)
by Carl F. Day
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $34.65
29 used & new from $20.16

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bigger hero than his more famous brother.Great Civil War soldier, no saint, August 20, 2012
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Recently I read about George Armstrong Custer and that he had a hero brother who earned two Congressional Medal of Honer medals in the Civil war.

Carl F. Day wrote a very good book about George Custer's younger brother Tom Custer. The 301 page book reads well with no boring parts. some nice B/W pictures and some maps.

We see the three brothers (Boston was the youngest) and a sister growing up in a non rich family. George gets to go to West Point with the help of a relative with political connections. Tom the middle brother enlists in the army as a private, makes corporal and with a Colonial with political influence attached to Brevet General big brother George Armstrong Custer gets a commission as second lieutenant.

Armstrong gets Tom attached to his command and Tom shows his bravery in the Civil war by attacking the Confederates killing men and capturing a battle flag. A few days later he does it again and captures another battle flag and is gun shot in the mouth/neck area.

We are told that in the early days of the US Army, Medal of Honers were given out for lots of non bravery/valor achievements. Later many of these early medal awards after being board searched were disallowed. However, the two Medal of Honers Tom Custer earned were certified as real awards for true heroism and valor. This to me is amazing, Tom being the first person ever to win two Medals of Honer.

Tom advances to Brevet Lt. Colonel, is later discharged but comes back with a commission and advances to the rank of Captain.

Lt. Colonel Armstrong Custer ( earlier Civil War Brevet two star General) was so proud of his younger brother that he said "Tom should be the General and I the Captain".

We see that Tom Custer was no saint and battled alcoholism. He did love his dogs but shot and killed many buffalo many times for the fun of it. He had a number of girl friends but never married. His brother Armstrong did and had a loving wife. Both brothers considered Libbie ( Armstrong's wife) their friend and did many jokes back and forth.

Eventually Tom gets to be attached to the Seventh Cavalry as Lt. Colonial Armstrong Custer's aid. We see the orders the brothers receive to attack and kill Indians.

Eventually a large part of the Seventh Calvary including Armstrong and Tom are massacred at the battle of The Little Big Horn. We see both are terribly mutilated ( Tom's remains being almost unrecognizable). Only parts of the regiment survive under Captain Banteen and Major Reno. All directly attached to Armstrong Custer are wiped out.

This Frontier Military Series book was a great read and I plan to read others. On the back of the book 21 more books are listed. Anyone interested in the Civil War and the later Indian wars will like this action packed book. The reader will gain deep empathy with both the Custer brothers ( both had faults and were not saints) and be saddened by their tragic deaths and horrible mutilations. 4 1/2 stars


Atlantic: Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms,and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories
Atlantic: Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms,and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories
by Simon Winchester
Edition: Hardcover
264 used & new from $0.01

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of stories of sea battles, discoveries, storms and humans that live near the Atlantic and travel it., August 18, 2012
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I'm a fan of Simon Winchester and have read most of his books including Krakatoa and The Professor and the Madman. All good books worth reading. See my reviews.

Simon wrote a good 497 page book. The book read well with no boring parts. Some parts were more interesting than others. He does skip around time wise a lot and in different parts of the Atlantic and lands touching the Atlantic. The reader gets a good history of some of the early people who used the Atlantic, including the Vikings, the Romans, the early Irish, English, Germans, Dutch, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and many more. Also there is the unsubstantiated thought of early people crossing from the West to Europe but evidence of this is not shown.

Explorers Lief Ericson, Columbus, Cabot, and many more are shown and their contributions to Atlantic land exploration.

Some mega millions of years ago when all the continents were together and the birth of the Atlantic is shown as well as the far mega millions of year from now when the Atlantic will cease to exist as the continents will go together again is shown.

Also the vast pollution man has done to the Atlantic with oil spills and dumping of highly radioactive materials is shown as well as fishing sites , for example the Grand Banks cod industry fished out are shown. Also the near extinction of certain whales and some fish species like the Blue Fin Tuna are shown. Also the effects of global warming are shown and the rise of sea levels, glacier meltdown in Greenland and loss of ice in Antarctica are shown. Both human pumping out of greenhouse gases and the cyclical nature of the climate cycles are shown to some limited degree.

Some great sea battles with sailing ships and later steel men of war and gigantic battleships are shown. Huge hurricanes and storms are shown. Some interesting B/W pictures.

I'll give Simon Winchester credit, he wrote a wide sweep of information chapters about the Atlantic and human interaction with it. A little bit on a lot of subjects. There is some jumping around in the timeline of his writing that the reader has to get used to.
A good book with lots of interesting stories of a wide berth of information for readers with different interests. Rated 4 stars


Clear the Bridge! The War Patrols of the U.S.S. Tang
Clear the Bridge! The War Patrols of the U.S.S. Tang
by Richard H. O'Kane
Edition: Hardcover
49 used & new from $8.71

5.0 out of 5 stars Great WW2 5 war patrols. Commander O Kane Congressional Medal of Honer. Many medals for him and crew. All heros, August 15, 2012
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Being ex Navy and having worked on the outsides of nuke subs at Holy Lock Scotland I had a great interest in this book.

Rear Admiral USN retired Richard H. O'Kane wrote a great WW2 book on the five war patrols on the USS Tang against the Japanese.
The 479 page book read very well with no boring parts. Interesting B/W photos with a few nautical charts of a few of the areas in the Pacific the Tang was at in her five war patrols.

I just got done reading about the Wahoo and the hero and skipper Mush Morton with his superb XO Richard H. O'Kane who was promoted to command the sub USS Tang.

We see the courage and daring Lt Commander O'Kane had taking Tang well below the recommended lowest depth for training so he and the crew would know what the thick skinned Tang was capable of doing in case of having to go deep in battle. We see the help he had with Vice Admiral Lockwood gave him as commander of the submarine force in the Pacific. We also see some of the troubles the Tang and other sub crews had with defective torpedoes.

Tang and crew did great on her five war patrols and was in the upper tops in most ships sunk and total tonnage sank. Also the crew of the Tang helped rescue numerous downed US officers and airman in the sea after air attacks on Japanese positions. Lt. Commander O'Kane got the Navy Cross and 3 gold stars in lue of more Navy Crosses and many of the crew received Silver Stars and Bronze Stars and other awards for heroism and gallantry. Later Commander O'Kane received the Congressional Medal of Honer from President Truman for his heroism on the fifth and last patrol of the Tang. Also the Tang and crew were in a rare group of subs receiving two Presidential citations. The Tang and crew single handed wiped out an entire large convoy in the last fifth patrol.

Unfortunately the last torpedo fired from Tang was defective, circled and sunk the Tang. Only a few officers and men escaped and survived. A few were taken prisioners and taken aboard a Japanese escort ship. They were put in a POW camp and suffered numerous beatings and only 300 calories of food/day. The men all went down into the 90's pounds and suffered Berry Berry and other diseases. In the POW camp the war ended and they were released.

We see the true heroism these submariners had. Anyone interested in the Navy in WW2 and US subs and their crews will like this book. 5 stars


Undersea Warrior: The World War II Story of Mush Morton and the USS Wahoo
Undersea Warrior: The World War II Story of Mush Morton and the USS Wahoo
by Don Keith
Edition: Hardcover
65 used & new from $1.75

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book on Mush Morton skipper of Diesel WW2 sub Wahoo. navy Cross 3 gold stars leu of more Navy Cross. Pres. citation. Hero, August 8, 2012
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Being ex Navy and having worked on the outside of nuclear subs in Holy Lock Scotland I had a great interest in Mush Morton skipper of the WW2 diesel "boat" sub fighting the Japanese in the Pacific.

Don Keith wrote a fantastic book Undersea Warrior. 321 pages of non stop excitement with no boring parts. I read it in two days and did not want to put it down. Some interesting B/W pictures too.

We see fun loving "Mush"(nickname Mushmouth by Annapolis classmates)) Morton graduating out of the Navy academy Annapolis getting his first assignment on a surface ship, later going to sub school and serving on an older sub and eventually being its skipper. Later he is assigned as a prospective commanding officer to the Wahoo. Its skipper was not very good at keeping up moral, and took a low key conservative position on attacking Japaneses ships. Almost all enemy ships got away before he could fire the Wahoo's torpedoes. Only a few sunk. Mush complains to Admiral Lockwood and gets to be Wahoo's skipper.

With a great XO,( earns the Congressional Metal of Honor commanding another sub), and an all volunteer great crew ( Mush gave them thirty minutes to decide if they wanted to go on his highly aggressive and dangerous patrol with him), they sink a Japanese destroyer and merchant Japanese ships. One of them was a troop ship loaded with Japanese soldiers and POW Indians. The Wahoo sinks the transport and Mush orders part of the crew to man the deck guns and kill the soldiers in the water and in the life boats. Unfortunately many of the POWs are killed too. Many thought this killing was too aggressive and inhuman, but Mush explains these Japanese soldiers would of been used against our soldiers and men and women in the Pacific. Admiral "Bull" Halsy agrees.

The Wahoo's 3 -5 patrols with Mush as skipper were legendary with aggressive heroic attacking of Japanese ships. At that time a record sinking of ships. Admiral Lockwood considers Much his best sub skipper and names him "Mush the Magnificent". Much earns the Navy Cross and three gold stars in lue of other Navy Crosses. The XO earns a Silver Star. The entire crew earns a Presidential citation. Also Much is put up for the Congressional Metal of Honor but never gets it. Many thought he didn't get it because in some of the upper rank Navy officer's minds Mush's fighting actions were too aggressive and the killing of the soldiers in the water and the life boats was inhuman. Also some INMO were jealous of Mush's association with Hollywood stars like Carry Grant, Earl Flinn and more. Mush was a consultant on the movie "Destination Toyko starring Carry Grant. Mush becomes a national hero and has Hollywood friends and friends in high places like Admiral Lockwood in charge of the subs in the Pacific.

Admiral Lockwood battles with the Bureau of Ordinance to fix defective torpedoes. Mush and other skippers give harsh evidence of defective torpedoes and that much more shipping could be sunk with more reliable torpedoes. Eventually the torpedo problem is solved.

The Wahoo's sixth patrol is a bust with no ships sunk due to defective torpedoes.

The seventh patrol is when the Wahoo, Mush and the entire crew are killed by attacking patrol planes. Mush and crew get credit for sinking some ships on the seventh patrol and Mush's wife is presented the Purple Heart for Mush posthumously.

A sad ending. Mush and crew true heroes. The reader will develop deep empathy with Mush and his young family and the crew of the Wahoo.

Many years later, after the war, with cooperation of the Japanese and Russians the sunk Wahoo is located and a peace monument is constructed. There is closure for Mush's ex wife ( she had remarried ) and family and other crew members families as well as Japanese family members of the ships the Wahoo sank.

A great book anyone interested in WW2 diesel sub "boats" and the heroic skippers and crew that manned them will appreciate. Five star rated.


Run Silent Run Deep (Cassell Military Paperbacks)
Run Silent Run Deep (Cassell Military Paperbacks)
by Edward Latimer Beach
Edition: Paperback
23 used & new from $2.21

5.0 out of 5 stars Epic novel of WW2 subs attacking Japanese shipping. Great characters, August 6, 2012
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I'm a fan of the late Captain Beech Jr. I've read almost all of his submarine books. All 5 stars. See my reviews.

Run Silent Run Deep is a great classic WW2 submarine novel, wrote by the late Captain beech who fought the Japanese from various subs, commanded a WW2 sub, an oilier, skipper of the Titan ( a huge, duel nuclear reactor sub), set a record around the world submerged in the Titan and was a Naval aid to President Eisenhower. Beach was highly decorated with medals of valor. Beach was a man who knew submarines and used his detailed experiences and knowledge to write a fast paced action WW2 submarine novel. No boring parts. I read the book in two days and had difficulty putting it down. The characters Lt. Commander Richardson, XO Jim Bledsoe, third officer Keith, Captain Blunt and others are superbly shown in this great book.

We see the heroism attacking and destroying the Japanese destroyer skippered by the infamous Japanese Captain "Bungo Peat". This Captain was an expert at seeking out and destroying US subs attacking convoys he helped protect. Skipper Lt Commander Richardson and crew on the US sub Eel finally sink the destroyer and Captain "Bungo Peat". Lots more action but I won't ruin the book for you.

I also bought the DVD Run Silent Run Deep staring Clark Gable and Burt Lancaster. The ending was different than the book. 5 star DVD. Buy the book first than view the DVD. Both great!

Even though this is a novel of fiction , the reader is drawn into the novel with life like characters and submarine detail. A first rate book. Anyone who served in the Navy or has an interest in WW2 diesel "boats" subs will love this book. Rated 5 stars.


Submarine
Submarine
by Edward Latimer Beach
Edition: Hardcover
14 used & new from $9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A few of the WW2 diesel boat action against the Japanese. Epic book, August 6, 2012
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This review is from: Submarine (Hardcover)
I'm a fan of the late Captain Beach and have read almost all of his submarine books.He served on a few subs and other craft as well as the Navy aid to President Eisenhower. A true Navy hero. All 5 stars. See my reviews.

Submarine is a great book about several diesel "boats" subs that waged war against the Japanese in the Pacific in WW2.
The book read smooth with no boring parts. I read it in two days and didn't want to put it down. Beach had a great writing style putting the reader right in the action inside and out of the subs attacking convoys and escort ships.

We see the problems with faulty torpedoes early in the war and later that being corrected. The subs sank about half of the total Japanese shipping helping to cripple the supplies and materials to Japan's war machine. Also we see two US subs sank two of Japan's gigantic aircraft carriers. Submarines, many destroyers, other escort ships tankers, freighters and more were sunk by various subs.

We see the heroism the skippers and crews had being depth charged and at times shot at on the surface. Many received medals of valor. However many subs and crews were lost.

A great non stop action book. I can't say anything bad about it. All good. Anyone having served in the Navy ( I served in the Navy at Holy Lock Scotland working on the outsides of nuclear powered US subs) or interested in WW2 diesel "boats" will love this book. Rated five stars.


Around the World Submerged: the Voyage of the Triton
Around the World Submerged: the Voyage of the Triton
by Edward Latimer Beach
Edition: Hardcover
32 used & new from $5.00

5.0 out of 5 stars USS Triton SSRN 586 circumnavigation of Earth submerged. Great captain and crew, July 27, 2012
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Being X Navy and having worked on the outsides of subs at Holy Lock Scotland I had great interest in this book. I also read the late Captain Beach's Cold Is The Sea, and Dust On The Sea both 5 stars. I have purchased his Submarine and Run Silent Run Deep Books but still have to read them. The Run Silent Run Deep movie starring Clark Gable was 5 stars.

The late retired Captain Edward Beach wrote a great book Around The World Submerged. We see him getting command of the Triton SSRN 586, the largest sub at that time with two nuclear reactors. The sub was so huge as not to be a nautical term "boat" but a ship. Captain Beach had been a WW2 submariner with medals of heroism. Plus a Navy aid to President Eisenhower and Captain of an oiler ship.Lots of experience.

We see the Navy giving him and Triton's crew a "top secret" mission. They are to take Triton around the world submerged. Magellan was the first to circumnavigate the world and a cast plaque is made to give Spain of both the achievements.

We see the problems of some faulty equipment( some serious) and how the problems were resolved as well as a major hydraulic leak repaired. A crewman gets the Navy Commendation ribbon for his quick thinking. The crew get a Presidential Unit Citation given by the secretary of the Navy and Beach gets the Legion of Merit medal.

This was going during the height of the cold war when a US U2 plane was shot down. Eisenhower is delighted when Captain Beach gives him a letter from the completed mission. The President laughs as the letter is covered with toilet paper because of drying ship made slow drying ink. Beach forgot to take of the toilet paper. The President is delighted the world will know the world's seas are open with the circumnavigation of the earth by the USS Triton and crew. Job well done.

An excellent book describing crossing the equator "King Neptune, wife and grand baby" ceremony for Polliwogs to become Shell backs. Also we see the human side of keeping moral up with a ship "newspaper" and other planned activities Lots of good food supplied, as well as many scientific experiments on long time confinement of the men, two weeks no smoking tests and more. Lots of photos through the periscope of ships and interesting land sites for National Geographic. A crewman from Guam who had not been home in 14 years, sees his new house by his father through the periscope and is promised leave after the mission. Beach keeps his promise and the crewman gets 60 days leave at Guam. We see a sick crewman ( kidney stones) evacuated to another US ship through the sail with Triton's hull still underwater.

A truely great mission and a huge shake down cruise to find equipment problems on the new sub. Lots of new deep sea science done by scientists aboard, plus new underwater sites found.

Anyone interested in submarine history and the skill and dedication of submarine crews will like this book. 5 stars


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