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Old 02-13-2021, 08:49 PM   #41
Skoolie
 
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Question

Attached is a beta diagram of the L-R cross section of what I am looking at fabricating under my bus.

What I want to know is if someone else has already documented building something similar on Skoolie.net.
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Old 02-14-2021, 06:57 AM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastlane View Post
Attached is a beta diagram of the L-R cross section of what I am looking at fabricating under my bus.

What I want to know is if someone else has already documented building something similar on Skoolie.net.

Love your drawings and taking the time to put information on them. I'm a little slow at absorbing the concept you are wanting to bring into play. I absolutely . <--youtube video. Regarding the replacement of the skirting, the tool boxes extending beyond the skirt, but cut in so well, looks awesome IMO.



It's very popular to see heavy angle iron and flat bar used to support all kinds of boxes and other heavy items on OTR trucks. If you can put either another tank on the opposite side or a box with tools or eq in it to counter the full tank somewhat, you can use 8' iron with short pieces going up to the frame web and bolted. ?
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:41 AM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastlane View Post
Attached is a beta diagram of the L-R cross section of what I am looking at fabricating under my bus.

What I want to know is if someone else has already documented building something similar on Skoolie.net.
I am planning on a similar large open underbody storage. I am thinking the best way for the C channel of the frame to support the weight is to build a bracket that will clamp the C channel to square tubing. The braket would be steel plate which is greater or equal in thickness to the frame and as wide as what will slide over the frame between the bus body floor ribs. Long bolts or all thread would attach a lower plate that would camp the tubing to the frame. There would be a total of 4 bolts per side. Positioning the bolts close to the frame and the tubing would limit any shifting of the assembly. The tubing could also be welded to the bottom plate to limit movement. The rest of the underbody structure would then be attached to this tubing. I apologize for my crude drawing.

Another thought is to look at how the axles are attached to the frame. If they are just bolted on then any weight from storage should be fine being bolted on. Only bolt through the vertical part of the C channel. It would be best to place holes where the OEM placed them.

Ted
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Old 02-14-2021, 12:36 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TJones View Post
I am planning on a similar large open underbody storage. I am thinking the best way for the C channel of the frame to support the weight is to build a bracket that will clamp the C channel to square tubing. The braket would be steel plate which is greater or equal in thickness to the frame and as wide as what will slide over the frame between the bus body floor ribs.

Ted
somewhere on this site on another thread someone posted pre-fabbed brackets just for that. Likely from a trucker's gear website.
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Old 02-15-2021, 04:10 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by Mountain Gnome View Post
somewhere on this site on another thread someone posted pre-fabbed brackets just for that. Likely from a trucker's gear website.
I like what you are saying. No need to redo the wheel when other people have documented what you're looking to do.
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Old 02-15-2021, 08:02 PM   #46
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Post

Attached is version 1 of my L-R cross section diagram I passionately spent 4 hours on today.

How does my bracket idea hold up?
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Old 02-15-2021, 11:14 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastlane View Post
Attached is version 1 of my L-R cross section diagram I passionately spent 4 hours on today.

How does my bracket idea hold up?
I think that could work provided that the tab that clamps down on the frame is thick enough to avoid bending.

I would go with the box beam that dips down. You could cover it with sheet metal to shield your driveline from the cargo in your storage.

Ted
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Old 02-16-2021, 11:57 PM   #48
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Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by TJones View Post
I think that could work provided that the tab that clamps down on the frame is thick enough to avoid bending.

I would go with the box beam that dips down. You could cover it with sheet metal to shield your driveline from the cargo in your storage.

Ted
The tab would be at least as thick as the frame thickness. After finalizing the welds, with the best supplies I can afford & the best methods, I'll dip the tabs in a basin of rust removal solution, then immediately transfer into denatured alcohol (for powdercoat prep), then after the alcohol evaporates, immediately powdercoat it (if there is something I am missing let me know). Once the powdercoat dries, dip in bedliner 10 times). It might be time cheaper to outsource this just for the tabs. then I am still concerned though about it's longevity. The threaded steel rods are crucial so I'm going with Grade 5 or higher. Don't think stainless rods can be worked into the build budget but if the budget was bigger they would be. Use four rods (two inner, two outer) per tab for redundancy.

Enclosing the driveshaft is the way to go. For the same amount of material and less work, I can protect the driveshaft. Also, great place to store spare drivetrain parts provided you know the maximum extent of driveshaft travel from it's resting position, add 20% to your numbers, and mount rigidly.

When I boondock on salt flats I'm going to be very happy I completely enclosed and sealed the driveshaft along with the rest of the underbody.

How to build the enclosure so the driveshaft segments are accessible & removable for service?

Has anybody built this kind of structure under their bus or other heavy vehicle?
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Old 02-23-2021, 10:41 PM   #49
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Post Progress so far.

Spent the day cleaning up and picking up nuts and bolts with a magnetic pickup tool. Getting ready to shorten the heat exchanger run to the first row, and mounting the heat exchanger under that seat. The first row is being kept for the Spartan stage of the build.

I Unscrewed aluminum tracks clamping the elements of the rubber floor together. There is one seat left to remove over the right wheel well, I tried drilling into the bolt head with a step bit, and dripping a corrosive mixture (5% vinegar and table salt) into the holes, waiting a week, so I can break the bolt heads off with an impact driver. This would have likely worked if I had set the impact to turn clockwise.

I’m then stripping the original rubber and rotten subfloor, that’s going to be the dirtiest job of the whole interior build. Who knows how many species of mold colonies have established there. Can anyone recommend a comfortable respirator for this kind of job?

Looking forward to stripping the walls and ceiling and seeing the extent of the roof leaks and oxidation from 40 years of wet - dry cycling.
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Old 02-26-2021, 03:34 PM   #50
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Fry’s Electronics has died. My favorite electronics store, even as they had less and less merchandise, has passed away.

I knew they they could die any day, and ‘any day’ was February 24th, 2021.

With death comes an opportunity for new life, and I hope MicroCenter (the leader in B&M electronics stores) moves into California.

Fry’s, with it’s themed stores and legacy in Silicon Valley deserves a revival in the same spirit that created the original.
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Old 02-26-2021, 10:49 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by Fastlane View Post
Fryís Electronics has died. My favorite electronics store, even as they had less and less merchandise, has passed away.

I knew they they could die any day, and Ďany dayí was February 24th, 2021.

With death comes an opportunity for new life, and I hope MicroCenter (the leader in B&M electronics stores) moves into California.

Fryís, with itís themed stores and legacy in Silicon Valley deserves a revival in the same spirit that created the original.
In my younger days, as a young police officer, I got a lucky connection driving a limousine (just part-time, as they needed a trip) for Charles and Alice Fry. Charles started a grocery chain here in Arizona, Fry's Food Stores, and he'd want to take trips around the state to visit his stores...and those of competitors. The competitors knew him and he was only visiting to say hi, offer support, and share stories. I drove for him quite a bit for a couple of years and he always sat up front with me. He was a true gentleman. This would have been about '85 or so?

He used to beam, telling me about his sons who had started an electronics store and how they realized that many of the customers were women sent from the local electronics manufacturers to pick up some parts for the team. They started carrying panty hose and snacks and other things, then expanded their non-electronics offerings, and that helped differentiate them from the competition.
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Old 02-28-2021, 04:33 PM   #52
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Post Acceptance of the Death of Fry's Electronics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rossvtaylor View Post
In my younger days, as a young police officer, I got a lucky connection driving a limousine (just part-time, as they needed a trip) for Charles and Alice Fry. Charles started a grocery chain here in Arizona, Fry's Food Stores, and he'd want to take trips around the state to visit his stores...and those of competitors. The competitors knew him and he was only visiting to say hi, offer support, and share stories. I drove for him quite a bit for a couple of years and he always sat up front with me. He was a true gentleman. This would have been about '85 or so?

He used to beam, telling me about his sons who had started an electronics store and how they realized that many of the customers were women sent from the local electronics manufacturers to pick up some parts for the team. They started carrying panty hose and snacks and other things, then expanded their non-electronics offerings, and that helped differentiate them from the competition.
If you are on reddit, r/Frys would love to hear this.

I am a Second Generation Fry's Customer, after my Dad who is an electrical engineer. He's worked for KLA Tencor, Hospira, Active Minds (company behind GameGolf), and now is in a company that has something to do with autonomous cars (I haven't asked the name).

I started my grieving process once I saw the first video from Retail Archeology of an empty Fry's store in Tempe, AZ (the golf themed one) in August 2019. I just returned from a trip from Texas, and if that video came out three weeks sooner I would have changed my route to visit as many Fry's locations as possible to document them (sneakily recording photos and videos for soon-to-be a defunct brand).

Fry's being such a huge part of my life, I knew I had to begin greiving then as Home Office could decide to lock the doors anyday (with their history of shady business practices I didn't put it past them). Looks like 2 years is how long it took to drain the equity out of the retail arm to the legally seperate real estate arm, I thought they could charge themselves more in rent, licensure, and inflate expenses to do this faster.

I documented as much as I could, even getting caught a couple times, one time being made to leave as I was forced to delete photos off my camera. I am not going to share my footage until after the company is fully dissolved (not that I was too concerned a lawsuit or mafia justice from a then-dying store). If they wanted to go after me they could have easily found me, as I gave them free suggestions on how to turn around Fry's at their Home Office as well as a new modern logo I drafted for Fry's (which you can find on the subreddit). Maybe they will now or after they wind-down the company.

If I had the wealth I would have worked with the company and a documentary crew to produce a series about Fry's, being the first and last great electronics store. For Netflix.

I do like how it looks like they're handling the wind down process, it is the best I've seen from a closing retailer. The only thing they could do better for customers is to refund Gift Card balances, and tell us if / when remaining merchandise (including stuff consigners don't want back) and theming elements will go up for auction. I really hope the creditors see the value in the stores theming elements, and put them up for auction. That way pieces of the stores heritage can live on in private homes and elsewhere. I am checking the Fry's homepage every other day for auction dates. I don't think there's enough merchandise to be worth having a final liquidation sale.
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Old 03-02-2021, 05:01 PM   #53
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Continuing to strip; I found fiberglass inside the rear bulkhead, for sound deadening. Without a respirator, I held my breath as I carefully moved it into a trash bag, secured by clamps right below. Black mold, fine dirt accompanied the yellow fiberglass insulation, which surprisingly held its shape for 40 years in the cavity.

The cleanest way to remove fiberglass is using a 14 gallon shop vac with a 2” inner diameter hose, with a 1” or smaller diameter sucking orifice. This way it picks apart the batting and prevents clogging up your hose.

I’ve decided to keep the ceiling and walls until I have RV registration, to have inner sheet metal to “permanently” mount to for the certification.

I will remove the panels above and between the windows, as I need to see the extent of oxidation (roof leaks in two spots, that only drip after heavy rain).

I Will be generating a lot of trash this week.
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Old 03-04-2021, 12:29 AM   #54
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Post

As I strip the floor, I found a metal floor that was painted white in 1980 before the plywood and rubber was screwed down. If they didn't do this, I wouldn't be stripping the floor as this bus would have been scrapped 10-20 years ago because the floor would not have passed D.O.T. inspection. Lots of paint bubbling, indicative of pitting. Plywood is still wet in areas. Removing the moist, crumbling, rotten subfloor is the nastiest part of the entire build, and I have nearly every window open to prevent breathing in too many mold spores as I shovel this out (the best respirator I can afford right now is a gaiter, which is better than nothing). Still, No soft spots or rust-created holes larger than a nickel.

The second photo is mildly interesting. It looks like the broken off foot for a seat, but itís actually the rubber.
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Old 03-04-2021, 07:04 AM   #55
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Originally Posted by Fastlane View Post
If you are on reddit, r/Frys would love to hear this.
Ahhh, I am not on reddit. I will see if I can find that and share a bit, though. I never met the Fry's Electronics founders, Charles' boys, but he spoke of them often. After Charles died, I emailed the Fry's Electronics admin with a note of condolences and my observation that Charles was super proud of his kids and what they'd accomplished. I didn't hear anything back, but that was a long shot...I just wanted to share that. I know I appreciated hearing from my dad's coworkers after he died.

Anyway, sorry to muddy your great build thread. You're doing great work and I am definitely following along.
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Old 03-04-2021, 12:46 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rossvtaylor View Post
Ahhh, I am not on reddit. I will see if I can find that and share a bit, though. I never met the Fry's Electronics founders, Charles' boys, but he spoke of them often. After Charles died, I emailed the Fry's Electronics admin with a note of condolences and my observation that Charles was super proud of his kids and what they'd accomplished. I didn't hear anything back, but that was a long shot...I just wanted to share that. I know I appreciated hearing from my dad's coworkers after he died.

Anyway, sorry to muddy your great build thread. You're doing great work and I am definitely following along.
You didnít muddy my thread. Itís important that these accounts get written down, posted, and shared many times as Lots Of Copies Keeps Stuff Safe.
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Old 03-04-2021, 04:32 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastlane View Post
If you are on reddit, r/Frys would love to hear this.

I am a Second Generation Fry's Customer, after my Dad who is an electrical engineer. He's worked for KLA Tencor, Hospira, Active Minds (company behind GameGolf), and now is in a company that has something to do with autonomous cars (I haven't asked the name).

I started my grieving process once I saw the first video from Retail Archeology of an empty Fry's store in Tempe, AZ (the golf themed one) in August 2019. I just returned from a trip from Texas, and if that video came out three weeks sooner I would have changed my route to visit as many Fry's locations as possible to document them (sneakily recording photos and videos for soon-to-be a defunct brand).

Fry's being such a huge part of my life, I knew I had to begin greiving then as Home Office could decide to lock the doors anyday (with their history of shady business practices I didn't put it past them). Looks like 2 years is how long it took to drain the equity out of the retail arm to the legally seperate real estate arm, I thought they could charge themselves more in rent, licensure, and inflate expenses to do this faster.

I documented as much as I could, even getting caught a couple times, one time being made to leave as I was forced to delete photos off my camera. I am not going to share my footage until after the company is fully dissolved (not that I was too concerned a lawsuit or mafia justice from a then-dying store). If they wanted to go after me they could have easily found me, as I gave them free suggestions on how to turn around Fry's at their Home Office as well as a new modern logo I drafted for Fry's (which you can find on the subreddit). Maybe they will now or after they wind-down the company.

If I had the wealth I would have worked with the company and a documentary crew to produce a series about Fry's, being the first and last great electronics store. For Netflix.

I do like how it looks like they're handling the wind down process, it is the best I've seen from a closing retailer. The only thing they could do better for customers is to refund Gift Card balances, and tell us if / when remaining merchandise (including stuff consigners don't want back) and theming elements will go up for auction. I really hope the creditors see the value in the stores theming elements, and put them up for auction. That way pieces of the stores heritage can live on in private homes and elsewhere. I am checking the Fry's homepage every other day for auction dates. I don't think there's enough merchandise to be worth having a final liquidation sale.

I moved from NY to Chandler AZ in 2001. In NY we had "Incredible Universe" which had a space theme.(Same owners I believe as Frye's) It was an amazing experience when I first went in to their new store on Long Island in 1993. I was 23 then and thought to myself that this will be the only electronics store I would ever shop at! Radio Shack (Tandy Corporation) was part owner then. Incredible Universe went out of business maybe two or three years later.

Fast forward to the Frye's electronics store in Tempe. When we moved here that area where Frye's was located seemed shady. You would have to watch to make sure your car wasn't being driven to Mexico right out of the parking lot. Auto thefts were a big thing at the time. I loved the golf theme and again, enjoyed spending hours just looking at everything right down to the smallest resistor. That store had absolutely everything and in multiple flavors. I went back about two years ago and noticed all the shelves were bare. Their employees seemed to be brainwashed that the company's purchasing agents were having a hard time getting stock to fill the store. (Blaming lack of Chinese shipments) I mean, it was absolutely empty shelving. I felt bad for the guys working there as some of them had been there since its inception. Its sad to hear that it finally went under. I gave it two more attempts yet each time I went back, it looked more and more of an empty real estate shell with open box items if they even had anything.


You're doing a great job on the bus! Not to change subjects but since many people do not know what Frye's electronics is, I wanted to share my experience too.

My advice is to not get frustrated as you work on your project and don't take on too much at once. You will get it done.
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Old 03-05-2021, 09:43 PM   #58
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Engine: CAT 3208 Marine Diesel
Post Smiling at my floor, no additional rust holes found!

Looks like the glue protected a lot of the metal floor in addition to the paint. Iím happy to see that there are no rust holes at the back end of the wheel wells.

I find a square blade shovel to be the best tool for lifting pieces of crumbling plywood, after pouring a gallon of water to it. Itís actually tolerable to remove the floor now as I suppressed the dust and mold.
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Old 03-06-2021, 12:44 AM   #59
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The 545, IMHO, is problematic due to it's reduce specifications. The MT643, which I have, is only a four speed and has a wide power range, which in a 40' bus you don't want (weight to power). Both the 545 and 643 are mechanical trannies.

The 2000 / 3000 series are electronic. In a FE bus that's not an issue because the tranny and shifter are close together with a short wire harness. In a RE bus you have 40'+ of harness. Not an issue if 1) Nothing goes wrong and you have to trace the harness 2) you are not swapping a mechanical tranny for an electronic one (40' harnesses are not cheap!).

The electronic series have five gears, maybe six. This gives you good cruise speed, lower RPMs, higher mpg and a good power range for climbing passes.

Engine:
I don't know much about engines except my T444E 7.3 is a good engine. I'm not sure for a 40' bus though, unless you got the 250hp high torque version. The 8.3 and DT4666E are both well regarded.

Budget:
To be clear, your entire budget is $7,000?

After already insulating my bus, if I were to do it again, I'd spray foam it, because I think it's overall more likely to get in all the nooks and crannies and is easier to do. But, it's not cheap!

I sourced a lot of my materials from craigslist, but there are many things that just need to be bought new. Plumbing (it's the fittings and ball valves that get ya), propane pipe, valves, bottles; electrical both AC / DC. AC is cheap, DC with inverter/charger and solar is where the big bucks go. Inverter generator to run electronics safely.

Then there's all the "little" things that creep your budget.

There's $7k with right there....not including the bus.

Timeline:
It's not that conversions haven't been done quickly, but on a 40', it will be tough. If you have a skill set, tools, time and energy to go full time at it, who knows. But it seems like your time lines are going to get pushed.

In other words, I wouldn't book being somewhere based on when you're planning on finishing the bus without be able to cancel and get your money back.

Best of luck.
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Old 03-06-2021, 02:04 AM   #60
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Year: 1981
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Chassis: International
Engine: CAT 3208 Marine Diesel
Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simplicity View Post
Transmissions:
The 545, IMHO, is problematic due to it's reduce specifications. The MT643, which I have, is only a four speed and has a wide power range, which in a 40' bus you don't want (weight to power). Both the 545 and 643 are mechanical trannies.

The 2000 / 3000 series are electronic. In a FE bus that's not an issue because the tranny and shifter are close together with a short wire harness. In a RE bus you have 40'+ of harness. Not an issue if 1) Nothing goes wrong and you have to trace the harness 2) you are not swapping a mechanical tranny for an electronic one (40' harnesses are not cheap!).

The electronic series have five gears, maybe six. This gives you good cruise speed, lower RPMs, higher mpg and a good power range for climbing passes.

Engine:
I don't know much about engines except my T444E 7.3 is a good engine. I'm not sure for a 40' bus though, unless you got the 250hp high torque version. The 8.3 and DT4666E are both well regarded.

Budget:
To be clear, your entire budget is $7,000?

After already insulating my bus, if I were to do it again, I'd spray foam it, because I think it's overall more likely to get in all the nooks and crannies and is easier to do. But, it's not cheap!

I sourced a lot of my materials from craigslist, but there are many things that just need to be bought new. Plumbing (it's the fittings and ball valves that get ya), propane pipe, valves, bottles; electrical both AC / DC. AC is cheap, DC with inverter/charger and solar is where the big bucks go. Inverter generator to run electronics safely.

Then there's all the "little" things that creep your budget.

There's $7k with right there....not including the bus.

Timeline:
It's not that conversions haven't been done quickly, but on a 40', it will be tough. If you have a skill set, tools, time and energy to go full time at it, who knows. But it seems like your time lines are going to get pushed.

In other words, I wouldn't book being somewhere based on when you're planning on finishing the bus without be able to cancel and get your money back.

Best of luck.
Thanks for posting. While I’m past the purchase stage and into the build stage, your post will be of tremendous value to future people who want similar for their future skoolies. This post would make a nice Skoolie Wiki stub article.
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