Category Archives: Nature, Photography, Videos

VOB file fixer quickly and easily fixes incorrect video length

I’m blogging about this because I had a terrible time finding a solution to my problem and I want to help other people who are having the same problem.

A while back I was digitizing old VHS tapes using my DVD/VCR combo player/recorder.  I was creating raw DVDs from old VHS tapes and then taking the raw DVDs and copying them onto my laptop for editing.  But sometimes the VOB files that were created by the DVD recorder would have terribly incorrect lengths when viewed on my PC.  For example, a 30 minute VOB file would show up and play as a 10 second long VOB file on my PC.  This incorrect time was keeping my PC software from being able to view and edit the VOB files.  Apparently this is a fairly common problem with some DVD recorders, since this VOB length information is not actually used by many consumer electronic devices.

It took me a while, but I was finally able to find a simple and free utility called MPEG Streamclip that was able to fix the VOB file length data without having to completely render the entire VOB.  This program has a terrible user interface and it also has a couple of quirks.  For example, it gives me a couple errors regarding some Apple Quicktime software that is not installed on my system, but it did what I needed it to do anyways.  But what do you expect for free, huh?

MPEG Streamclip screen shot

When you tell it to open a VOB that has incorrect length information, it realizes the problem during the open operation and prompts you to fix the timecode breaks or not.  Once it fixes the timecode breaks, you can save as MPG (not Export … Save As) which doesn’t perform any processing nor rendering of the file because the VOB was in MPG format already, or you can export into a number of different video formats.

broken and fixed VOB file

One other thing.  MPEG Streamclip does not require admin rights to install on your PC.  Just download the zip, unzip it, and run the executable.  Here is the website where you can download the utility.  Have fun!

http://www.squared5.com/

Kurt

Postscript: In January 2017 I got a new PC and MPEG Streamclip refused to run until I installed the Alternate Quicktime package that it pointed me to.  This Alternate Quicktime package does require admin rights to install.

Redneck Car Wash

We witnessed this while at a public park in North Carolina today.  There was a boat ramp nearby and I saw this man drive right up and back his pickup truck right down the ramp and into the water with no boat trailer.  The rear wheels were totally submerged and the front wheels were probably just a little bit in the water.  We found out later that the guy was trying to rinse out the bed of his truck.  Well, needless to say, he got stuck there.  After maybe 10 minutes, someone drove up and backed their SUV up to his truck in an apparent attempt to help him get his truck out.  I got distracted for a minute and when I looked back, the man’s half submerged truck was completely gone.  Yes, it was no longer there.  It had somehow rolled completely into the lake and was totally submerged.  A couple of hours, two fire trucks, four police cars, two tow trucks, and one fire rescue unit later, I was able to record the following video of the rescue crew pulling the submerged truck out of the lake.  Enjoy.  I just hope the guy who owns the pickup will be able to laugh about this experience later.  🙂


redneck_car_wash

Cute Little Baby Horseshoe Crab

I took the boys out in the canoe yesterday afternoon and we explored the little island South of Parrish Park on the Indian River in Titusville.

horseshoecrabisland

Not sure if this island has an official name, but we decided to name it Horseshoe Crab Island.

horseshoecrabisland2

We walked around the island in knee deep water and played and looked for horseshoe crabs and fish.  There were lots and lots of horseshoe crabs skittering around yesterday.  And we even saw this cute little baby one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i9AFCfDWtIw

horseshoecrabisland1

Our treehouse

Last weekend was a three day weekend, and I had lots of plans to get all sorts of tasks done around the house. Until my seven year old came up to me on Saturday morning and asked me to build him a treehouse. Little did he know that many months earlier I had scoped out the tree in our back yard for a treehouse and I had even drawn up plans and figured out all the materials I needed.

treehouseplans2

treehouseplans1

Here is a photo of the tree I used.

01-leucht_treehouse

Here is a photo of the treehouse platform under construction:

10-leucht_treehouse

Here is a photo of the completed platform with flooring planks installed and a hole for the trap door:

20-leucht_treehouse

And here is the final product complete with railing:

26-leucht_treehouse

Reverse angle of final product:

28-leucht_treehouse

Here’s a photo of the kids enjoying their new treehouse:

29-leucht_treehouse

The boys got out their play tools and pretended to help me build the treehouse:

30-leucht_treehouse

This took me the whole three day weekend to complete and it was a labor of love.  It also took me four trips to Lowe’s for various materials.  I’m very pleased with the results and the boys seem to love it.  The biggest problem for me was the deer flies that hang out in the backyard.  They were all over me all during the construction, and I have welts all over my arms and legs to remember the experience by.  🙂

For anyone who wants more details, I have posted detailed high resolution photos and construction instructions on my website here:  http://www.leucht.com/kurt/treehouse/

Secret’s out … Kurt can sing.

Okay, there’s no more denying it. I’m one of those people who like to sing. Now that hundreds of Park Avenue Baptist Church members have seen the Gloria Christmas concert that I performed in last weekend, the cat is totally out of the bag.


rock_star1

(Not me … Mark Wahlberg in the film Rock Star)

In case you want to witness this spectacle for yourself, I put some snippets of it on YouTube:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ufa2s215dQ video-still

Or you can just watch the YouTube snippets right here by clicking the play button below:

Since this performance, I’ve had lots of people come up to me and tell me that they didn’t know I could sing like that. I just tell them that I sing like this all the time along with the radio in my car, so it’s really not a big deal. I guess I’ve just never sung like this in public until now.

Thanks for all the kind words. I’m just using the gifts that God gave me, though.