The toolkit: Window provides virtual view

  • Article by: Akron Beacon-Journal
  • Updated: December 18, 2012 - 1:55 PM

Plus: Tub o' Towels

You don't need a window to have a view.

Iowa-based company Sky Factory makes a virtual window called eScape that's a high-definition LED screen inside a casement window. The screen plays videos of nature scenes, complete with sound -- and you can even add music to the mix, if you wish.

The eScape lets you choose from about three dozen scenes, each of which contains eight one-hour videos that can play sequentially for eight hours. You can watch the moon rise over the Wind River Range in Wyoming, for example, or enjoy water cascading over Maine's Screw Auger Falls. Customized scenes are available, too.

The window comes with a choice of trim styles and finishes to help it fit into your home.

Pricing depends on a number of variables, but a company spokesperson described the window as a high-end installation. Information is at www.skyfactory.com.

Tough wipes

Tub O'Towels is an amped-up version of cleaning wipes.

The disposable towels were originally designed for contractors and are thicker and bigger than typical wipes. They're soaked in a cleaner that the manufacturer says will remove tough messes such as grease, tar and permanent marker.

The citrus-based formula contains lanolin, aloe vera and vitamin E to make it easier on hands.

The towels come individually wrapped or in a 90-towel canister ($14.99) or portable case. They're available at some hardware stores, home centers, auto parts stores and other retailers. You can find a nearby retailer at www.TubOTowels.com.

Marble rust stains

Q Do you have a remedy for cleaning rust stains around the drains in our marble bathroom sinks?

A The Marble Institute of America says rust stains are difficult to remove from marble, but you can try using a poultice of diatomaceous earth and a commercially available rust remover. A poultice is a pastelike mixture that's spread on the stained area and left there for a day or two to draw out the stain as it dries.

You can buy diatomaceous earth from some pool suppliers and garden centers. A number of rust removers are available; one common brand is Whink.

Here are the Marble Institute's instructions:

Mix enough rust remover and diatomaceous earth to make a paste about the consistency of peanut butter. Wet the stained area with distilled water, and then use a wood or plastic spatula to spread a layer ¼ to 1/2 inch thick on the stain. (Be careful, because rust remover is very caustic.)

Cover the paste with plastic and tape the edges to seal it, then leave it in place. After 24 hours, remove the plastic and let the poultice continue to dry.

Once the poultice has dried thoroughly, remove it using the spatula. Rinse the stain with distilled water and buff dry with a soft cloth.

You can repeat the process up to four times for difficult stains. If it doesn't work, you'll need to call a professional.

The chemical might etch the surface of the marble. If that happens, apply polishing powder and buff with burlap or a felt buffing pad.

AKRON BEACON JOURNAL

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