Search found 1143 matches

by obgraham
Sat Dec 08, 2018 5:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Root Canal - dentist or endodontist
Replies: 47
Views: 3545

Re: Root Canal - dentist or endodontist

There’s the “good ol days” and there’s these days. I had a root canal by a young general dentist 50 years ago. He capped it with a gold “partial onlay”. Every dentist who sees it calls it a true dental work of art. I have had several since then, mostly all sent to endodontist. Last one very nicely d...
by obgraham
Fri Dec 07, 2018 3:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quicken 2006
Replies: 7
Views: 688

Re: Quicken 2006

I use Quicken the old manual way also. No downloading. I use Quicken 2009 because I have the disc and can install it on any new computer without difficulty. Works fine. Why use it? Number 1 reason is that's where I keep track and be sure my bills are paid on time and that I have enough in my checkin...
by obgraham
Thu Dec 06, 2018 12:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want to do non-religious, short-term medical volunteer work outside the US
Replies: 13
Views: 1758

Re: Want to do non-religious, short-term medical volunteer work outside the US

Sometimes volunteers without medical credentials can be of great assistance as part of groups doing this work. They can often help if they have language skills of the local populations and with organizing the clinics. This assistance can allow the medical folks to see and treat more patients and be...
by obgraham
Tue Dec 04, 2018 6:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking for a nice travel watch... recommendations?
Replies: 41
Views: 2350

Re: Looking for a nice travel watch... recommendations?

Never been a watch person in particular, but Mrs Ob gave me a nice watch recently for our 50th. I wear it every day now. Nowhere near a Rolex, but too nice to wear on cruise excursions. We leave for a month-long cruise in the New Year. My plan is to get a walmart watch for under $15 for the cruise. ...
by obgraham
Tue Dec 04, 2018 12:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want to do non-religious, short-term medical volunteer work outside the US
Replies: 13
Views: 1758

Re: Want to do non-religious, short-term medical volunteer work outside the US

OP, I speak from experience, having done some 15 such trips. The large outfits like MSF are bureaucracies, given to meetings about everything. The most effective overseas work has been with small agencies, often run by a handful of people. They can make all the needed arragements, you the doc just g...
by obgraham
Sun Dec 02, 2018 8:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: US->Canada Money Transfer
Replies: 5
Views: 499

Re: US->Canada Money Transfer

I recently had such a need, and after researching the options decided that carrying the Benjamins across the border myself was the best way. Keeping in mind the regulations regarding cash across borders. (In fact I had to report to the CDN side, and they were very efficient and above board about it.)
by obgraham
Sat Dec 01, 2018 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Restaurant Budget
Replies: 113
Views: 6588

Re: Restaurant Budget

What an interesting topic -- it really gets to the heart of how people vary in their evaluation of the things in their life. Work through the thread and we see a real spread from "I never eat out" to "I never eat at home". I suspect most of us here support the opinion that a person should spend his ...
by obgraham
Sat Nov 24, 2018 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Networth to buy a dual turboprop aircraft?
Replies: 72
Views: 9152

Re: Networth to buy a dual turboprop aircraft?

When I had my 172R, ongoing fixed costs for space in another guy’s hangar, insurance, and annual service ran me $6k.
Not including depreciation, purchase price, fuel, incidental service, or training/instruction costs.

Airplanes are spendy afflictions!
by obgraham
Sat Nov 24, 2018 12:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Networth to buy a dual turboprop aircraft?
Replies: 72
Views: 9152

Re: Networth to buy a dual turboprop aircraft?

There are other choices, not necessarily a turbo-twin. A Cessna 414 for example. Or even a 337, with its twin centerline layout. Couple of friends of mine flew one of them very nicely all over the US and Canada. Still spendy for maintenance, and, obviously, now pretty old machines. Still much cheape...
by obgraham
Fri Nov 16, 2018 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Financial] Habits of the Rich
Replies: 222
Views: 29251

Re: [Financial] Habits of the Rich

Since I hung out with a lot of doctors, I saw what it took to be financially stable, and it seemed very simple: 1.Stay married to the same person 2.Avoid building that big "doctor house" 3.Buy no more than one "stupid" car during your time. Amazed how many were unable to be successful financially an...
by obgraham
Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone use a Wealth Manager?
Replies: 26
Views: 3177

Re: Anyone use a Wealth Manager?

Just listen carefully to the pitch by that "advisor" guy who advertises on TV: "We do better when you do better". Of course. When your assets rise, his amount rises, as it is a fixed percentage of your assets. What he fails to add is that he does just fine when your assets decline, also. Meanwhile h...
by obgraham
Mon Nov 12, 2018 2:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 20th Anniversary vacation ideas wanted
Replies: 29
Views: 1912

Re: 20th Anniversary vacation ideas wanted

Depends on what you seek. If you are not urban dwellers now, but would find a city trip to be a nice change of pace, here is a little offbeat one to consider: Lima, Peru. World class cuisine. Some interesting museums and neighborhoods to visit (homework required) Excellent hotels, in Miraflores and ...
by obgraham
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: International Travel during Maternity/Paternity
Replies: 86
Views: 3671

Re: International Travel during Maternity/Paternity

Why am I always the contrarian?! We went on a cross country plane trip for a week in Vegas with our first who was 6 weeks old. Piece of cake. She was very easy, but it is true, we did not venture very far afield. We hired sitters and attended a couple of shows. We then went on a 3 week rented-RV tri...
by obgraham
Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paper or Paperless? How and what financial records do you keep?
Replies: 50
Views: 3689

Re: Paper or Paperless? How and what financial records do you keep?

The key to workable electronic filing is organization. You need a way to find something when you want it. In paper times, that is why we used file folders. Mine is very simple...the PC’s standard file structure. I have a data directory literally called “Filing Cabinet”. Within that, are subfolders w...
by obgraham
Mon Oct 29, 2018 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much does a car need to be driven?
Replies: 43
Views: 3647

Re: How much does a car need to be driven?

As a snowbird, I hang with a bunch of other like types. Most of us leave a vehicle at the other end of the country for up to 6 months at a time. I've done that for 5 years now also. I simply clean the car up, check the fluids, add some stabilizer then fill the fuel tank, and leave the vehicle with a...
by obgraham
Sat Oct 27, 2018 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Indoor Play toys for toddler
Replies: 31
Views: 1822

Re: Indoor Play toys for toddler

Since we are now the grandparents, we observe what is happening in our kids’ home, with 2 girls, almost 4 and almost 2: They have a good income, so the house is jammed with every toy you can imagine. All the way from simple alphabet blocks, up to electric cars to ride in the basement. What we find i...
by obgraham
Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many miles (total) on car before buying another car ?
Replies: 114
Views: 7227

Re: How many miles (total) on car before buying another car ?

If those are the 3 factors that concern you, nobody else could put a mileage value on them.

Certainly those are not the issues that bother me about an older vehicle.
by obgraham
Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need New Refrigerator
Replies: 20
Views: 2276

Re: Need New Refrigerator

I suspect a cabinet guy could reconfigure that space for a different reefer.
by obgraham
Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best location to rent in Rome for vacation?
Replies: 7
Views: 743

Re: Best location to rent in Rome for vacation?

We went to Rome for the first time in March ‘18. Stayed very near Vatican. Our old legs don’t go as far these days, so we did use the bus and metro. Once you figure it out it gets you where you need to be. Biggest problem for us: Snow and Rain! Rained hard every day, all day for the week. Pretty muc...
by obgraham
Tue Oct 16, 2018 7:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on Three-Night English Road Trip
Replies: 30
Views: 2120

Re: Advice on Three-Night English Road Trip

I know OP says he has booked his arrangements, but: I've done several driving tours in England over the years. (Oddly, the first, many years back, was almost identical to OP's plan: Winchester, Salisbury, Wells, Stonehenge, Bath.) I just enjoy driving through the little villages on the way to somepl...
by obgraham
Tue Oct 16, 2018 12:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Online statements/ mail Vs paper
Replies: 6
Views: 996

Re: Online statements/ mail Vs paper

I keep virtually NO paper any more, since 2005. Vehicle titles, signed and witnessed estate planning papers, real estate recorded papers, and that's about it. Everything else is a pdf. Including all my tax documentation. If some outfit thinks that's not adequate, that's their problem, not mine. I se...
by obgraham
Mon Oct 15, 2018 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What would you do with some bulk silver?
Replies: 41
Views: 2590

Re: What would you do with some bulk silver?

Not sure if this is a "personal investments" or consumer question. This thread is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (collectible). I purchased 25 oz of silver bars as a 25th anniversary gift to my husband (silver is the 25th). It's worth less today than when I bought it. My husband is a coi...
by obgraham
Wed Oct 10, 2018 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 1.5 liter wine
Replies: 52
Views: 11588

Re: 1.5 liter wine

Easy answer. Pay no attention to finding a 1.5l bottle. Just open 2 regular bottles.
by obgraham
Sat Oct 06, 2018 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What purchase saved you the most money?
Replies: 136
Views: 13073

Re: What purchase saved you the most money?

Without a doubt: New England Journal of Medicine Lifetime Subscription. When I was in training NEJM was very cheap (somewhere around $20 yearly). Then, sometime about 1976 they offered a "lifetime subscription" for a one time charge of $300. I thought it rather pricey at the time, and the offer was ...
by obgraham
Mon Sep 24, 2018 6:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8883

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

I'm a millennial and I write two checks each year, for property and state income tax. How do you work around this (without paying fees)? My county charges $1.50 to pay taxes via ACH. Deduct the price of a stamp required for mailing, and the net cost is $1.01. It's worth that to me to do it easily o...
by obgraham
Mon Sep 24, 2018 11:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Digitalizing Old Photos Help
Replies: 22
Views: 1661

Re: Digitalizing Old Photos Help

I did exactly the same as the post below, some 11000 scans, prints, negs, and slides. The V500 produced great scans. Batch scanning was not appropriate for me, as my boxes of stuff were of all sorts of sizes, and most of them required that I bring up the image for repair or adjustment before making ...
by obgraham
Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8883

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

watchnerd wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:45 pm

What do you put in your safe deposit box?

We have a fire safe for important docs and such.
I use mine for backup hard drives off site. I know, "why don't I just use cloud?" No thanks. All my life and records are digital now, and I prefer to keep it nearby, though not all in the same building.
by obgraham
Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Options -- Any advice?
Replies: 29
Views: 1806

Re: HVAC Options -- Any advice?

Something is funny with this quote. They are giving you a heat pump ac/heater condenser and related stuff. Why? Then they are quoting a fulll gas heater. Not the way I read it: he's looking at a gas furnace and electric a/c. Having had both this layout and heat pumps, I'd go this way in a heartbeat.
by obgraham
Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Options -- Any advice?
Replies: 29
Views: 1806

Re: HVAC Options -- Any advice?

Price seems good to me. I'd upgrade to variable stage and improved efficiency if I planned to stay for 5+ years. Wouldn't bother with the humidifier. This is the right answer. You're looking at a reputable brand. Get whatever upgrades there are that are reasonably priced. More important to me is th...
by obgraham
Fri Sep 21, 2018 5:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thoughts on Using Medicare Consultant that is Paid by the Insurers
Replies: 25
Views: 1330

Re: Thoughts on Using Medicare Consultant that is Paid by the Insurers

When we first went on Medicare we used a Medicare Broker, same idea as your consultant. It worked out well, as he went through every company and plan offered in my state/county. He had no bias toward one or the other, and once we decided he completed the applications for us. No charges, and we have ...
by obgraham
Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8883

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

Iowa David wrote:
Thu Sep 20, 2018 3:23 pm
...
Coin Counter (Local grocery store keeps $.09/$1)
Not if you buy an Amazon gift card, then use that for Kindle purchases!
by obgraham
Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8883

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

Ally handles 99% of my banking now, just fine. I still have a small account at a local 3-branch bank. Recently I was in there and commented that the place was very quiet. Manager pointed out that although their teller services are very light, they are very busy with business services, mostly small t...
by obgraham
Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Traveling overseas .. credit cards? cash exchange?
Replies: 43
Views: 2866

Re: Traveling overseas .. credit cards? cash exchange?

It does depend where you are going. I found Italy less agreeable to cards than cash, this past spring. Some places there tack on a credit card fee. And I've been to plenty of less developed countries where lots of places are not set up to deal with cards. So always have more than one way to pay. And...
by obgraham
Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I bother meeting with a Chase Private Client Rep
Replies: 56
Views: 5091

Re: Should I bother meeting with a Chase Private Client Rep

I think most of the big financial institutions go through some variation of this "CPC" business. Bank of America was very happy to make me a "preferred customer" when I was running a bunch of business cash through their place. They were always calling me with this or that, and I had a particular "ba...
by obgraham
Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fixing diamond ring
Replies: 19
Views: 1451

Re: Fixing diamond ring

I would just take it to a reputable "non-chain" local jeweler and have them fix it. It's what they do for a living. If they are stealing the stones they wouldn't be in business long. I think it is much less likely to be a problem at a local jeweler.
by obgraham
Tue Sep 18, 2018 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Potential Water Leak Issue/Irregular Water Usage
Replies: 9
Views: 622

Re: Potential Water Leak Issue/Irregular Water Usage

The flapper valve or the gasket is the usual cause of a toilet leak -- as stated, the mechanism won't seat right and leaks past it. Flapper changes are very simple, and the flapper replacement is at all the stores for a couple of bucks. My toilets are cheap junk with no flapper, just a plastic thing...
by obgraham
Sat Sep 15, 2018 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Wearing] Shorts in Egypt
Replies: 71
Views: 5621

Re: [Wearing] Shorts in Egypt

I know there of plenty here who follow the "I'll just wear whatever is practical wherever I go" school, but I think that can be very disrespectful. Of course lots of folks don't care about that either. It amazed me how many tourists in Rome, even in winter, wandered around St Pete's in their cargo s...
by obgraham
Sat Sep 15, 2018 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rain Jacket recommendations and care
Replies: 32
Views: 2522

Re: Rain Jacket recommendations and care

For me, this was a place where spending a few bucks paid off. I bought a GoreTex rain jacket in 1982 from REI. Paid the astronomical (then) sum of $150. Now 35 years later it looks like new, works very well, packs light, and surprisingly, still fits me!
by obgraham
Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Forester - ready to buy
Replies: 43
Views: 4423

Re: Subaru Forester - ready to buy

Contrary to most here, we prefer the low end models. No fancy cruise, automatic warnings, or nav systems. A lot harder to find those on dealer lots. Before writing my response above, I did a quick check of local inventory. Curiously, I saw a surge of low-end Foresters, especially with manual transm...
by obgraham
Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to determine quality of a finished new construction home
Replies: 45
Views: 3128

Re: How to determine quality of a finished new construction home

researcher wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:05 am
krappei wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 10:45 am
How likely is it that they make all of the apparent stuff high quality but average or lower quality on construction like insulation, materials, foundation, roofing, etc.?
The likelihood is 100%.
Agreed.
by obgraham
Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Forester - ready to buy
Replies: 43
Views: 4423

Re: Subaru Forester - ready to buy

We bought a 2017 Forester, and like it a lot. As snowbirds, we needed another vehicle for the winter place, so decided to trade our high miles Pilot out for a second Forester, this one a neatly identical 2018. As with others, we found the price of a slightly used model too high compared to just buyi...
by obgraham
Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medicare and related statements
Replies: 7
Views: 487

Re: Medicare and related statements

I think, OP, that you will find you have little or no need to ever look at all that paperwork again once the billing is settled.
But like you, I'm a paper pack rat. I just get mine electronically where possible, and scan whatever I cannot get that way. I keep no actual paper.
by obgraham
Sun Sep 09, 2018 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: time for new pair of glasses
Replies: 36
Views: 2619

Re: time for new pair of glasses

I've recently switched to using Costco for my eyeglasses. Prior to that I was going to Pearle. Wow what a price difference. So after reading these posts, does anyone think I can save more by using online services (Zenni etc) rather than costco? I have progressives. I also get single vision glasses ...
by obgraham
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: time for new pair of glasses
Replies: 36
Views: 2619

Re: time for new pair of glasses

Is this an Optometrist or Ophthalmologist? Years ago, only Ophthalmologists could /would dilate eyes - but now (in most states) Optometrists do it. I have a condition that needs annual "watching" - alternate years between Optometrist and Ophthalmologist. Being an MD, I am biased. I go to MDs. I wil...
by obgraham
Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: time for new pair of glasses
Replies: 36
Views: 2619

Re: time for new pair of glasses

I would much rather have a competent eye doc check my eyes, rather than a technician point some new gadget at me and call it done. There's some thought going on behind what he/she is looking at. My eye doc still dilates me once a year, and does direct ophthalmoscopy. Yeah, it's a bit annoying, but h...
by obgraham
Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Go to Istanbul next week. Any suggestions
Replies: 50
Views: 3881

Re: Go to Istanbul next week. Any suggestions

Eat.

Everywhere.

The Kumkapi district has some superb seafood places, though you have to beware of the ripoffs there. But that is part of the whole experience!
by obgraham
Sat Sep 01, 2018 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Contemplating trading in a 2-year old car with <25k miles...
Replies: 23
Views: 1791

Re: Contemplating trading in a 2-year old car with <25k miles...

With cars it is not always about the dollars. Sometimes we just don’t have the correct vehicle for whatever stage of life. I am opposite to OP. I traded a 6 year olf Nissan Altima with only 14k miles on it for a 2018 Forester, mostly because I LIKE the seats in the Forester much better and found the...
by obgraham
Wed Aug 29, 2018 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Protecting myself against suit for Personal Injury
Replies: 19
Views: 2665

Re: Protecting myself against suit for Personal Injury

I am pretty sure that my SF umbrella is on a “claims made” basis, not “occurrence”. However, this is the critical issue to determine. It will be in the policy papers. My SF Umbrella booklet (California) reads: Policy Period. This policy applies to a loss which first occurs during the policy period ...
by obgraham
Tue Aug 28, 2018 10:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Protecting myself against suit for Personal Injury
Replies: 19
Views: 2665

Re: Protecting myself against suit for Personal Injury

I am pretty sure that my SF umbrella is on a “claims made” basis, not “occurrence”. However, this is the critical issue to determine. It will be in the policy papers. If it is like mine, the policy is in effect if both the event and the claim took place during a time when the premium was paid for. O...
by obgraham
Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you 7 figure guys organize multiple accounts?
Replies: 164
Views: 12201

Re: How do you 7 figure guys organize multiple accounts?

In my working years I had several brokerage and fund accounts. Once retired I either spent the balances or moved them all. Now everything is in Vanguard. If I log in there I can see everything I need, and their tools will track any performance questions I have. I see no need to make my life difficul...