i went with my father at noontime to costco. it was a rainy day but not a problem in the car. we made a quick stop at harbor freight tools so i could pick up a pair of cheap snap ring pliers to remove the old rollers from my dryer. we went via medford-main, which was a lot quicker than having to tranverse mcgrath highway. the pliers were just $3.99 for a set that came with interchangeable heads. while i was there i also bought a manual riveter ($4.99) because i needed one to attach the glide pads (which i'm also replacing).
i bought a set of capstone-brand remote control outlets for $13 from costco, so i could give the 3 etekcity-brand ZAP 5LX remote outlets to my parents. remote control outlets are all the rage now; i even saw a set of 3 outlets at harbor freight but it was more expensive than the set i bought at costco ($22, although the receiver was the smallest one i've seen thus far).
later we went to the restaurant depot to pick up more supplies for the cafe before my father finally dropped me off back at home.
i couldn't wait to get home and try out the new remote control outlets. these capstone receivers are actually smaller than the etekcity version, and they sit on the bottom outlet instead of the top one. they also have a light that turns on when they're activated. i did a check with my electricity meter and the receiver uses 0.8 watts of power when they're in standby mode. once they were all plugged in, i noticed something immediately: they don't always turn on/off and sometimes require additional clicks to register. with the etekcity remote outlets, reception was 100%. with these capstone outlets, it's more like 80%. they still work, but after having used the etekcity version, i tend to notice the difference. i'm not sure if that's enough for me to want to return these new outlets. they're still cheaper than etekcity, and the receivers are a bit smaller (etekcity ones are huge). prices for remote control outlets will keep on dropping, and they'll also get smaller. i can live with these for the time being.
in the early evening i tried out the snap ring pliers on my dryer. unfortunately the pins on the pliers were too big to fit into the holes of the snap rings keeping the support rollers in place. i then tried to just simply pry off the snap rings using everything from an awl, to paperclips, to even toothpicks, but the tension required to release the rings was just too great. i decided to wait for inspiration to strike.
for dinner i heated up a can of campbell soup. not the most glamorous of meals, but convenient.
later in the evening i went to play around with the dryer and that's when inspiration struck: i could reduce the size of the plier pins with my dremel tool, slowly shaving it down so it was the right diameter. it took some time, with sparks flying into the kitchen trash can, as i slowly whittled the pins down to the correct size. once that was done, it was an easy matter of locking into the pins and removing them.
finally i got a chance to inspect the dryer drum support rollers. the left roller was still fine, but it was the right one that was stuck. it seemed that the core/bearing of the wheel had detached so the rim of the roller was rubbing up against the side of the washing machine. why it then got stuck who knows (maybe because the washers were jammed into the roller), but hopefully my replacement parts will arrive tomorrow and i can finally fix everything.