Steps to a Bargain Winter Holiday

Going on a family winter holiday is often a key source of fond memories for parents and children alike. Despite the economic changes, you can still enjoy the same great winter holiday within your budget by seeking bargains. Here are some steps to a bargain winter holiday to help you with the planning process:

Step 1: Pick Your Destination

The first step in planning your winter holiday involves picking a destination in which you desire to travel. You can pick your destination based off anything from desired resort experiences to activities and scenery. However, the best way to obtain a bargain is to stay as close to home as possible, thereby reducing travel costs. You can often find ideal winter holiday destinations very close to home-making it a win, win situation for everyone.

Step 2: Select Bargain Holiday rentals

After you decide upon a location, it is time to book your lodging arrangements. When selecting a place to stay, take into consideration everything from distance from major attractions to quality package deals. For instance, many lodging companies offer discounts if you plan to stay for at least seven days, which can be a great deal! Seek out rentals that are located closer to the attractions you desire to see and offer discounts for multiple nights of stay in order to obtain the best holiday rental bargain. Do your research and find a place of lodging that offers you the best bargains and still falls within your budget.

Step 3: Look for “Free”

Everyone knows that the best bargains are free, especially when they still contribute to family fun without draining your wallet. Thanks to the internet, you can now easily access a wide array of free family attractions and activities. Plus, local attractions are often unique and add to your overall holiday experience. Although not all attractions will be free, you can often find a wide variety of coupons on the internet to help you save on other attractions, including skiing. These incredible bargains cannot be passed up when planning your holiday on a budget!

Do not be discouraged due to the tough economic times. Instead, follow these 3 steps to a bargain winter holiday to help plan an unforgettable experience for you and your family-all within your budget.

Housing by Increments: A Great Pay-As-You-Go Solution

Buying an existing home or building a new one is an expensive proposition, but if you’re willing to take an unconventional approach, you can build your own home by increments and spread the cost out over a period of years, possibly saving yourself a mortgage.

The first step is finding and purchasing a piece of property. You need to have the property inspected and judged acceptable for sewage or a septic system and availability to water and other utilities, and to make sure the land is zoned for residential use. Make sure you get all the building permits and other documentation you need, and then plan your home.

You might want to look at plans for homes, for sale in bookstores and through a number of magazines, or you might want to design your own home. Think of ways you can build your home in stages, making sure that the home is habitable at an early stage of building. One young couple decided to build a conventional stick-built home, but finished off the basement area first and capped it, then lived in the cellar while building the rest of the house.

There are companies in existence that offer modular homes built largely in a factory and then assembled on-site []. Some of these are created in segments which can either stand alone or be pieced together either all at once or over a period of time. The manufacturers will be able to give you valuable advice on how best to proceed.

Make sure that the most necessary parts of your home are built first. If necessary, you can live essentially in one room that serves as kitchen, living room and bedroom-renters of efficiency apartments do it all the time-but unless you want to live really roughly and use an outhouse (not a pleasant thought!) one of your first priorities should be to build a fully functional bathroom.

Also make sure that, even though you plan to add on to your home in increments, you plan the entire structure of the home up front. You may decide that you will add on a laundry room in two years, for instance; you will want to have the plans for that laundry room now, so that expensive plumbing and electrical work will be done in the most efficient manner possible. This generally means clustering rooms that need a water supply close together to minimize the material needed.

Building your home over a period of years by using your own money or by accessing short-term unsecured personal loans, or a combination of the two, will allow you to own your home outright immediately and save you many thousands of dollars over your lifetime. If you’re willing to be patient and live unconventionally for a while, it’s a great option.

Importance of Aggregates

Aggregate play an important part in providing strength to concrete, the transition zone of concrete is the interfacial region between an aggregate and cement paste and is responsible for providing compressive strength to cement. Care should be taken not to use Maximum size aggregate(MSA) more than 20 mm in your houses while there may be rubble of size as big as 80 to 150 mm. However, in the construction of nuclear power plants, use of rubble is advised since they require thick wall section to act as a shield against radiation.

Aggregate should be round and equiangular in size( they should not be irregular and flaky. However, use of angular aggregate is advised since these aggregates have a good interlocking effect, possess minimum surface area and hence require less mortar to cover their surface. During the extraction of aggregate, care should be taken to make the aggregate undergo washing or sieve analysis before its use. Since any presence of harmful materials involving silt, clay, pyrites, acidic salts can affect the strength and durability of the concrete leading to inhomogeneity in composition and failure of the structure when subjected to eccentric loading. The Bureau of the Indian standard specifies four grading zones for fine aggregate Group I to IV in order of decreasing particle size starting from coarse sand and ending up with fine sand. It is advisable not to use fine sand in making RCC structure since they are porous and can cause corrosion in reinforcement.

Fine aggregates include natural sand, crushed natural gravel and crushed natural stone these particles should pass through a sieve of opening 4.75 mm whereas the ones which are completely retained in it are coarse aggregates which include uncrushed gravel and stone and big boulders.

Aggregate should be chemically inert in nature and should be sufficiently tough, hard and should have the good bearing capacity.

Well-Graded Aggregates used in a cement mixture can reduce the presence of air voids and help in providing sufficient strength and durability to concrete.

There are some tests carried out on aggregates such as the Los Angeles test, impact test, abrasion test and test of the soundness of aggregates done by dissolving them in a solution of sodium and magnesium sulphate.

For providing support over concrete dams which has a huge mass, aggregates formed by igneous rocks( specially mafic and ultramafic) should be used.

In the construction of buttress and arch dams moderate to weak aggregates can be employed since the highest level of load acts on the abutments. Care should be taken to restrict the MSA of aggregate according to the nature of the building else’s situation of segregation (separation of coarser particles from cement mix) and bleeding( the rise of water over the surface of concrete and formation of a layer of cement called laitance) take place.

Review on Men’s Italian Briefcases – 16 Briefcase Reviews

We hope you find our Men’s Italian Briefcase Resource Center helpful in your search for the ultimate men’s Italian briefcase. We have provided detailed reviews on sixteen leading briefcases made by top Italian case manufacturers.

The first men’s Italian leather briefcase is by Tony Perotti, the Lazio triple gusset briefcase. The style is traditional and favored by lawyers. It has 3 gusseted compartments, one of which is a padded laptop sleeve with these dimensions: 14.5(L) x 11.5(H) x 2(W). The briefcase has beautiful pigskin lining and has a mesh zippered pocket. There are many organization pockets, as well as a one inch thick detachable comfort strap. The closure is a lockable (key included) square clasp. The outside of the bag measures 16.5(L) x 11.5(H) x 6.75(D). We favor this men’s briefcase because of its traditional, roomy style, laptop carriage and lock closure. It is made with Italian leather in Italy.

Second in review is The Roman, by Tony Perotti. This Italian leather briefcase has a unique, non-traditional look, but does have traditional features and functionality. This is a double gusset (compartment) Italian leather briefcase and is laptop and Ipad compatible. This briefcase is from the Paparazzi Collection and features a inner zippered compartment, credit card slots, key chain holder, and holds your cell phone and wallet. The outside dimensions of this Italian briefcase are 15.5(L) x 10.5(H) x 5.5(D) inches. The Roman briefcase comes with a detachable comfort strap. We like the Roman look on this case and its sleek image. This briefcase is made from Italian leather in Italy.

Our third review is men’s Italian briefcase manufactured by Floto Imports in Italy. The Pratesi Brief is hand made in Tuscany Italy in 3 colors: Camel Brown, Mahogany Brown, and Black. This is a triple gusset briefcase and appeals to attorneys because of its size and classic lawyer style. The interior of this briefcase has three internal compartments. The outside of the briefcase measures 12(h) x 4.75(w) x 17(l). The Italian polished calfskin ages beautifully. The closure is a combination lock. A unique feature on this briefcase is that it contains an interior light to assist you in locating important documents, cell phone or media. We like this case because of its classic lawyer style and the unique interior light. This case is made with Italian leather in Tuscany, Italy.

Moving on to our fourth lawyer briefcase review…

Our next men’s Italian briefcase is the Jack Georges Sienna Collection Classic Brief Bag. This Italian leather briefcase has triple gussets, and is handcrafted with leather from the Tuscany region of Italy. The briefcase is made by the original, former Coach Leather designer Jack Georges. Lawyers and professionals like this briefcase because of its classic appeal, laptop carriage (up to 15.4 in.) and its steel frame reinforcement, roomy interior, ad the stay open top access feature. The closure is a key lock clasp. The dimensions of the briefcase are 17 1/2 x 12 1/2 x 8, and it comes with a strap as an option. Strap carriage requires extra side reinforcement at the factory. The briefcase is made in Black, Cherry and Cognac. This is a designer case and has beautiful signature lining. Monogramming option available.

Moving on to our fifth lawyer briefcase review…

Our fifth review for a litigation men’s Italian briefcase is the Italian Leather Briefcase Floto 4510 Firenze Brief / 17 Laptop Case. The briefcase is made in Tuscan Red, Vecchio Brown and Black. The interior is roomy enough to hold a laptop and external hard drive, 3 in. of files, a large coffee table book, and newspapers. It has an organizer, as well. Our handmade lawyer briefcase has top access with flap that swings open and a locking buckle strap. The briefcase is handmade in Tuscany with Italian polished calf-skin leather. Dimensions: 13 x 8 x 17.5 in. The bag has a comfort detachable shoulder strap and is trimmed in either brass or stainless steel hardware, depending on color. This Italian briefcases is made with Italian leather in Italy.

Moving on to our sixth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our sixth review is a men’s Italian briefcase that appeals to lawyers and professionals because of its sturdy wooden frame, top grain Italian leather on the outside and soft pigskin leather lining. There is an inside organizer to hold documents and folders, a pen holder and credit card / business card pocket. The outside of this Italian leather hard case measures 17.25(L) x 13(H) x 4.75(W) in. The handle provides a comfort grip and the two combination locks provide security. This hard case is made with Italian leather and pigskin leather in Italy.

Moving on to our seventh men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our seventh review is on a men’s Italian briefcase that has proven to be an ultimate computer case wrapped in Country Lux Italian Buffalo leather. The Kevin computer bag is manufactured by Dr. Koffer in Italy. The briefcase fits over luggage handles easily, has a detachable, adjustable shoulder strap and totes your 15.4 in. laptop with extra padding on sides and bottom of compartment. There are 3 compartments with interior pockets and an organizer for your PDA, cell phone, pen loops, card slots and computer charger. If you are searching for a bag that accommodates your laptop, yet has a fine Italian leather image, this is an excellent briefcase solution.

Moving on to our eighth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our eighth review on a Italian briefcase is no surprise, the Dr. Koffer Italian Leather Lawyers Briefcase. Our lawyer customers like this bag because of its classic style, its easy top access to documents, folders, and a 17 inch laptop. The laptop compartment is in the middle, while the other 2 compartments accommodate your legal files and documents. The closure is a flip up tuck lock with a key. The briefcase has metal feet and a cloth

lining. The outside dimensions of the case are: 12.5H x 17W x 6.5D inches. The inside has an organizer for your personals and electronics.

Moving on to our ninth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our ninth review for a men’s Italian briefcase with triple gussets and zip around closure. Lawyers and professionals like this case because of its size and the zip feature. Inside there is an organizer for personals. The briefcase accommodates a 15.4 laptop and a 1 inch thick detachable shoulder strap with padding is provided. The outside dimensions are: 16.25(L)x 1(H)x 5.5(D). This case is considered an organizer Lawyer briefcase. The briefcase is made in Italy with environment friendly methods.

Moving on to our tenth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our tenth review for an Italian leather portfolio briefcase, the Tony Perotti Arezzo Italico Collection portfolio is perfect for small laptops. Professionals like this case because of its functionality and light weight. The briefcase is a single compartment, with many organizational pockets. A thick detachable shoulder strap is included. The front flap over pocket has a lock to secure your personals. This brief case is made in Italy.

Moving on to our eleventh men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our eleventh review for a Italian briefcase, is the Dr. Koffer Sergei Classic Flap over Briefcase. Lawyers like this case because of its classic old English style. The briefcase is made of Country Lux Italian Buffalo leather in Italy. The case will accommodate a 15.4 inch laptop in a bottom padded section. This dowel briefcase measures 10H x 16W x 5D, and is made in Black, Brown and Cognac.

Moving on to our twelfth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our twelfth review for a men’s Italian briefcase, is the Dr. Koffer Gregory Flap over Briefcase. This briefcase accommodates a 15 inch laptop and is roomy enough for files and thick books. The back flap opens to an additional compartment. Lawyers like this case, again, because of its classic style. This oversized dowel briefcase is made of Karelian Itallian deer leather, and manufactured in Italy. The case measures 10H x 15W x 5.5D and comes with a detachable adjustable shoulder strap.

Moving on to our thirteenth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our thirteenth review for a men’s Italian briefcase, is the Jack Georges Sienna Collection Double gusset top Zip Briefcase. This is a beautiful briefcase with suede leather lining and drop down handles. There is an organizer inside for personals two outside pockets. This Italian leather briefcase comes with a shoulder strap, and has steel frame reinforcement. The outside dimensions are 16 1/2 x 12 x 5 inches. With the polished nickel hardware and the raw edge design, and functionality, it appeals to many professionals. The briefcase is made with leather from the Tuscany region of Italy.

Moving on to our fourteenth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our fourteenth review for a Italian briefcase, is the Castello Expandable Laptop Case. The laptop compartment measures 14.5 x 10.5 x 2 in. This bag is made of soft buttery Italian leather and made in Black. The briefcase expands to accommodate your many documents and personals. The closure is a hidden top zipper, which opens up to three compartments and includes a laptop sleeve. The case comes with an adjustable shoulder strap. The outside dimensions are 17 x 12 x 5 in. This is well made case and well priced for so many appointments.

Moving on to our fifteenth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our fifteenth review for a Italian briefcase, is the Jack Georges Croco Collection Slim Underarm Briefcase. This case also appeals to women because of its sleek style and light weight. Its an excellent choice for a meeting case. The under arm briefcase features an inside organizer for your cell phone, PDA, blackberry, DVDs, pen loops, etc. The outside dimensions are 15 3/4 x 11 x 1 1/2 in. The case is made with Italian faux croco leather in Brown or Black.

Moving on to our sixteenth men’s Italian briefcase review…

Our sixteenth review for a Italian briefcase, is the Floto Trastevere Brief / Lawyer Briefcase. Lawyers like this case because of the size, the interior 5 compartments and classic style. The closure is a locking buckle strap. Trastevere Brief is handmade in Tuscany using Italian polished calf-skin leather. The outside dimensions are 11(H) x 5(W) x 16(L). This bag is made in Vecchiio Brown with brass hardware or in

Black with stainless steel hardware.

The pictures that go with our article are located at: Review Men’s Italian Briefcase.

How to TIG Weld Aluminum and Get the Stack of Dimes Look, Even With an Old TIG Welding Machine

Wanna learn how to TIG weld aluminum?

First you need a decent TIG welding machine. Not a great one, just a decent one. Already got one? You might have an old Synrowave 300 or a DialArc, an old Hobart CyberTIG or you might have a brand new Miller Dynasty 350.

Know what? It doesn’t really matter. The same principles apply. If you have an old as dirt TIG welding machine, you can still make good aluminum TIG welds. Weld beads that look like a stack of dimes.

First lets look at machine settings:

  • Set the polarity to A/c (alternating currrent)
  • Make sure to set the high frequency to continuous
  • Set the amperage to about one and one half amps per one thousandths of inch of thickness. (up to about 250 amps then things change quite a bit)
  • Set both the contactor and amperage switches to the remote positon.
  • Set the argon or argon/helium torch shielding gas to around 15 cfh. (if you are using a #7 cup) less if the cup is smaller.
  • Notice I said argon or argon/helium? Argon is not the only game in town. In fact, if you TIG weld any aluminum over about .063″ thick, adding helium to the mix makes a huge difference.

Now lets talk tungsten electrodes

  • 2% thoriated have received a lot of bad press for the radioactivity issue but they do work.
  • 2% lanthanated electrodes are a really good all purpose electrode…good for TIG welding aluminum as well as steel.
  • Use the smallest electrode that will get the job done without quivering at max amperage.

Remote amperage control…you need a foot pedal. Period.

  • Once all the settings are ok, and assuming you are welding on 1/8″ thick aluminum, grab a piece of 4043 filler rod in 3/32 diameter (rarely will you use a rod as thick or thicker than the metal you are welding)
  • extend the electrode tip about 1/4″ past the tip of the TIG torch cup and pre purge the gas by tapping the foot pedal.
  • hold the torch like a big first grade pencil. touch the tip of the tungsten to the metal and then pull it back about 1/8 inch. flip your helmet down and press the pedal to initiate the arc.
  • don’t melt the aluminum right away though, watch the black stuff cook away from the arcs cleaning action before you melt the metal. Then press the pedal far enough to create a puddle that is about 3-4 times the thickness of the metal you are welding.

Now comes the part on how to achieve the “stack of dimes” look. You get that by adding the same amount of rod and by moving the torch the same distance each time you add rod. Add rod, Step ahead 1/8 inch,Add rod, Step ahead 1/8 inch,Add rod, Step ahead 1/8 inch, lather rinse repeat. If you do this consistently, you will get evenly spaced ripples that look like a stack of dimes.

Of course it looks different from underneath the welding helmet and it is harder than it sounds, but this is really how you do it. All that is left is the doing. It takes practice and lots of quality seat time.

Why There Are No Skyscrapers in Washington DC?

If you have ever visited our nation’s capital you certainly noticed aside from the Washington Monument (555-feet tallest in the city) and a few other landmarks including the US Capitol (289-feet ranked 5th tallest) there are no real tall high-rise or skyscraper buildings. Look across the Potomac River to Crystal City and Rosslyn and you’ll see them. Journey into the more distant suburbs of Maryland and Virginia and you’ll see them. So why are there no skyscrapers in Washington DC? Quite simply it is because there is a law restricting building height.

In 1894, the 12-story, 160-foot Cairo later Cairo Hotel opened at 1615 “Q” Street NW near Dupont Circle. An uproar from area citizens followed as many feared large monolithic buildings would dwarf the monuments and other buildings. The uproar leads the D.C. Commissioners to issue regulations limiting height to 90 feet for residential and 110 feet for business, or to the width of the street in front, whatever was smaller. Further lobbying caused the US Congress to pass the Heights of Buildings Act in 1899. This removed the front street restriction, but reaffirmed height limits to 90 feet on residential streets and 110 feet on business streets. It made an exception for buildings on business streets 160 feet wide along which buildings were permitted to be up to 130 feet tall.

In 1910 the act was amended restricting the height of any building to the width of the adjacent street plus 20 feet. Therefore a building facing a 130-foot-wide street could now be 150 feet tall. Other stipulations allowed for under certain conditions unoccupied spires, domes, towers, minarets, pinnacles, ventilation shafts, chimneys, smokestacks, penthouses over elevator shafts and fire sprinkler tanks be erected to a greater height if approved by the Mayor and of fireproof construction.

While Washington’s skyline rarely tops the 12th floor there a few tall exceptions listed in order of height. The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception (329-feet) ranks behind the Washington Monument. The Old Post Office Building (315-feet) with clock tower is next then the Washington National Cathedral (301-feet). The tallest commercial building is One Franklin Square (210-feet) ranked the 6th tallest after the US Capitol. While some contend this lack of vertical growth has contributed to greater sprawl, it is certain the many monuments of Washington DC are not overshadowed.

ATPV Vs EBT Arc Ratings

In the past some have asked the difference between ATPV (Arc Thermal Protection Value) and EBT (Energy Breakopen Threshold). So in this article we aim to highlight and explain the differences between ATPV or EBT.

Calorific Values

The important thing to be considered is the cal/cm2 which the fabric can support. In the US the requirements are summarised as followed:

  • Category I > 4 cal/cm2
  • Category 2 > 8 cal/cm2
  • Category 3 > 25 cal/cm2
  • Category 4 > 40 cal/cm2

What you need to know.

In the development stages of the ASTM F1959 Standard Test Method (which was used to determine the Arc Rating of Materials for Clothing) it was quickly recognised that some materials would allow skin burn prediction to be reached before they “broke open” and others would not. Initially these had become two ratings – the first was an ATPV, an arc thermal performance value and then the other was an EBT, an energy breakopen threshold. The reason why one of these ratings was marketed better than the other was because the materials they had tested did not exhibit the “breakopen” phenomena.

This way of thinking was a mistake and later it was determined that every fiber type can breakopen before its burn prediction level is reached. Today we recognise that knits usually breakopen before the point of burning and woven cloth shows signs of burning before the breakopen point. In fact all fibers have their disadvantages and advantages. It was therefore decided that the term would be renamed to “Arc Rating”. The main reason for arc rating was so that labeling would be less technical and easier for the user to understand. Additionally it was to remove false stigma associated with EBT. The arc rating term was announced back in 2000 but it took several years for it to be fully adopted. Due to this it was decided to leave the term EBT and ATPV as a subscript or an addendum to the term Arc Rating. This means that today you will see a label with Arc Rating (ATPV) = X cal/cm² or Arc Rating (EBT) = X cal/cm². In case you do not understand what the label is telling you, both are a fifty percent probability of the behavior at which the material can give a second degree burn. The Arc Rating (EBT) fabric has not exhibited a second degree burn on the calorimeter sensors in the majority of cases because the material has a one inch crack or a ½ square inch hole which is not directly over the sensor.

Each material receives an EBT or an ATPV. Although both of these values can be reported only one of these is the Arc Rating for the fabric. According to the ASTM F1506 specification, it is only the lowest which can be used on the clothing label. In order for a piece of clothing to be arc rated in the ASTM F1506 standard, the fabric has to undergo several tests which it must pass including wash testing and vertical flammability testing using ASTM D6413 which is a small scale test. To be really flame resistant for arc flash, flash fire or any real fire conditions, the fabric must pass a battery of tests and/or a full scale test.

An additional way to look at these ratings is as follows:

Arc Rating can be of two types.

1. ATPV: This is 50% probability of second degree burn in the 8kA arc test on a flat panel.

2. EBT: This is the 50% probability of a one inch crack in the material in the 8kA arc test on a flat panel.

So the conclusion from this is that neither is better. EBT fabrics are generally more insulative than they are strong and ATPV materials are stronger than they are insulative. Usually EBT would indicate that the garment is a knit and more comfortable but essentially no less protective to the user. This means that in the future never make a clothing protection decision based on the fact that the clothing received an ATPV or an EBT as They are “functional equivalents”.

Bow Tattoos – What Do They Mean and Why Should You Have One?

More and more women are getting tattoos. In the past tattoos were associated with gangsters and women of “questionable virtue”; tattoos are now seen as an artwork and a form of personal expression. That being said not everyone wants a skull or a heart with “Mom” written through it (no disrespect to anyone’s mom!) Women in particular want more delicate pretty tattoos, and for this reason bow tattoos have become increasingly popular.

Bows have long been associated with girls and women, worn in their hair and on their clothes as a fashion statement. I see tattoos as a personal and fashion statement, so it seems only sensible to me that they are making a more permanent statement and having them tattooed on their bodies. We can spend hours choosing the right clothes to wear, and applying make-up, if you already have a bow tattoo that is one form of beautification already taken care of, after the initial inking, it takes no time to apply and it will be washed every time you are.

The position of your bow tattoo is equally important; do you want it on prominent public display? Or are you going to keep it under wraps, showing it only when you choose? This will depend not only on your personality and how confident you feel displaying your tattoos, but also on your lifestyle, if you are a corporate business woman you might need to keep yours undercover at work! One particularly effective option is to have a slender part of the body, finger, wrist or ankle circled with an inked ribbon and finished with a bow tattoo. This can resemble jewellery as can bow tattoos on earlobes. If you want to be able to cover up at times, consider having your bow tattoo inked on your shoulder, lower back or thigh.

There is an old saying/tradition that uses knots or bows of string tied around fingers or into clothes to remind you of something, a bow tattoo can be used in the same way to remind you of a special person or event, a birth or anniversary for example. Bows have been used in art for hundreds of years to symbolise the fragility of life, it can be beautiful, just like a bow, but also like a bow life can be unravelled quickly. Yellow ribbons tied around trees have been used in more recent history, as a symbol that someone is waiting for the return of a loved one from war or a long journey. Pink bows or ribbons are now used to raise awareness of, and support for, women suffering from breast cancer. These are all powerful symbols and therefore anyone wishing to get a bow tattoo should think carefully which color and shape of bow to have inked, choose something that means something to you, it will be with you for a long time and will be a reflection of who you are to the world.

Drainage System And Its Importance

Drainage is the disposal of excess water on land (either used or in form of storm water). It must be distinguished from flood control which is the prevention of damage as a result of overflow from river. There are two type of system adopted for waste water collection. Separate sanitary and combined system. In separate sanitary system, there is a separate sewer that collects the household, commercial and industrial waste water and disposes them while a separate sewer collects the storm water and disposes it separately. In the combined system, both the storm water and domestic water are conveyed through the same pipe network.

Sanitary sewers should have a self cleansing velocity of (.6-1

m/s). This self cleansing velocity is achieved by laying the drain on a steep slope. Manholes should be placed at interval of 100-120m for the purpose of maintaining and servicing of the sewer. It should be noted that waste water in the sewer are usually transported by gravitational force rather than mechanical means (pumping) for convenient sake. This is why in laying sewer pipes; the topography of the area should be well understood.

The storm water flow can be estimated by .278CIA where C is the coefficient of runoff, I is the rainfall intensity and A is the catchment area. C is usually got from table which is a function of factors that affect infiltration. From rainfall data I can be estimated.

A can be estimated by using planimeter or superimposing scaled grid paper on the map and note the grid that fall within the boundary of the map . The waste water from industry, commercial centers and domestic uses are usually estimated by knowing the quantity of waste water the users’ discharges through the use of questionnaire and personal interview. The population of people and number of industries should be noted for this estimation.

The overall steps in layout sewers include:

  • Establish comprehensive map of the area including road contour, topography and utilities
  • Drains are shown with a single line with arrows for direction
  • Manholes are shown with a dot at all its necessary locations as the junctions and its intermediate point of 100-120m interval
  • Sewers are design to follow natural topography
  • Sewers are mostly branch network
  • Sewers or drains are usually located along the road
  • Design approach for sewers is as follows;
  • Estimate manning constant and select slope
  • Compute the section factor
  • Get the best hydraulic section either rectangle or trapezoid
  • Check the satisfaction of minimum velocity
  • Addition of adequate freeboard to avoid overflowing

The disposal of the waste water could be treated or not treated. However, the treatment is usually by biological method. The disposal of waste water is of immerse important for economic growth. The treated or untreated waste could be used as a source of irrigation, supplement stream or river flow and could be used as a source of recharge for ground water.

It is obvious in the cities of the developing countries that the most of construction industries do not take note of all the above mentioned process. As a result storm water follows drains that are not specified for them or overflows the drains there by causing erosions. On the other hand, some of the storm water are stagnant in the drains there by becoming a breeding place for mosquitoes and toads. This could result in increase of malaria and water related disease in the vicinity. All this is because; most government in such cities have not yet understand the important of drainage systems and the role it plays in social- economic development.

How to Clean Pool Deck Drains

Millions of people enjoy backyard swimming pools for exercise, fun, and hosting social gatherings. When you have a swimming pool, there are many things you have to do to make sure the pool stays clean and operating properly. One important part of the pool that must be maintained is the pool drain.

The main function of the pool deck drain is to provide a channel to transport excess water from the pool. Deck drains provide safety around the pool as they keep the deck dry and prevent flooding. Deck drains are effective at keeping the pool clean and resistant to damage from regular wear and tear. It also helps make cleaning and draining the deck much easier. Neglecting the pool deck drains can cause a host of problems such as the water not draining properly from the deck. Therefore, it may be time to clean pool deck drain.

Dust, dirt, and pollen gathers on the screen enclosure and the rainfall carries it on top of the deck. As water rushes into the drain, the debris flows with it. One task you may have to perform is unclogging the pool deck drain. A clogged pool drain is caused by a horizontal or a vertical clog. The clog may also be the result of small pieces of material and matter that built up over time and created a large clog. Using a special cleanser will help you get rid of the clog. These special cleansers are effective at removing clogs; however, acidic cleansers have the potential to damage the pool drain. It is important to check to see if you can manually remove the clog.

Cleaning out the pool deck drain includes the following:

1. If you are able to manually remove the clog, you can begin cleaning the deck drain by revealing one end of the channel. Get a flexible 1/2″ hose with the metal end taken off. The length of the hose should be as long as the drain.

2. Turn the hose on a half turn and feed it into the drain.

3. Place a sump pump in a five 5 gallon bucket.

4. Dig a hole that is deep enough so that the top of the bucket matches with the bottom of the drain. Run the discharge hose down to a lower spot. This will allow for the drainage of the clog or other debris.

5. Sometimes when you are able to manually remove the clog, you can use a plunger or auger to unclog drains. It is important to be careful when using these unclogging tools as you do not want to cause more damage and more expense. If you are worried about causing damage, you can enlist the services of a plumber who will have the skills to remove the clog without causing damage.

The pool deck is a vital component of the pool so it is essential that is kept in proper working order. It is wise to establish a maintenance check to make sure the pool deck as well as the rest of the pool components are working properly so that you and your family can enjoy time in and around your pool for many years.

Want to Avoid Having a Doctor Drill Out Your Eye? Wear Good Safety Goggles!

You read that right. I recently had the (dis)pleasure of being on the receiving end of a drill bit in the doctors office. And yes, the drill was the cure, not the ailment!

Here’s the story…

I had a rare weekday off last month and took advantage of it by making some progress on the restoration of a 1963 Corvette Split Window. I’m still in the disassembly process, so much of the time is spent removing and cleaning up grungy parts. This involves first a bath in a parts cleaner and then usually some liberal polishing with a wire wheel on my bench grinder. Now, wire wheel grinders can really be nasty since the individual wires sometimes let go and fly toward you with dangerous speed. Think little needle shaped bullets.

So I always wear safety goggles. It’s something that’s just been ingrained in me since my teenage days of helping my dad and uncles in the garage. Those were the days of wood shop style goggles. You know, the really ugly ones that look more like snorkeling masks? Anyway, the safety glass industry has made big fashion advancements since then and many safety goggles now look more like cool sunglasses. So that’s what I was wearing while grinding on a rusted Corvette tie rod on my day off. But it wasn’t enough.

The problem with those cool looking goggles/glasses is that they don’t wrap tight to your face. They’re better than standard glasses, but still leave gaps, both above and below. And that gap below is the path a stray sliver of metal took to hurtle into my left eye. I felt it of course, but it was a very tiny particle and didn’t bother me any more than a piece of sand or dirt from a wind storm. I kept working on the Corvette and didn’t think much more about it that night.

The next morning when I woke up my eye still hurt. Again, just the feeling that some little spec was in there and wouldn’t get out. Or I thought maybe I had just scratched the cornea and it would heal up. The human eye heals extremely fast.

To the doctor I go

But two days later the pain was no less. Having my wife look closely with a magnifying glass, she was able to actually see the spec. She couldn’t tell what it was, but it seemed stuck in the actual cornea of my eye, not just floating around. Of course this was a Saturday, so I reluctantly headed over the the Urgent Care to sit in an uncomfortable chair for 2 hours.

When the doctor finally got to me and peered at my eye with his slit light it only took him 15 seconds to guess what happened. He said he sees it quite frequently. The tiny sliver of metal was hot when it left the grinding wheel, so when it hit my eye it actually melted it’s way in and stuck there. That’s why normal tears and eye drops wouldn’t budge it.

So then the fun starts. He puts a drop in my eye that numbs it up. This is a weird feeling I can tell you. He leaves the room (probably to take another sliver out of the next guy’s eye) and returns after the drop has had a chance to really do it’s work. Then he turns down the lights and uses this device to hold my eye open. It looked like a carryover from the medieval days. The doctor then pulls up his tray of picks, needles and other sharp, shiny instruments. He picks out the sharpest one and comes toward my eye with it.

OK, at this point I’m still calm…mostly. At first I thought there was no way I’d be able to keep my eye from flinching as he brought the needle sharp pick near it. But the numbing drops actually worked to counter my natural reaction to blink. Well, that and the device prying my eye lids open. So he starts picking at the sliver of metal. Each time he tried to get it out my vision would shift and blur as the needle actually rotated my eye ball!

Finally it came out and I breathed a sigh of relief that the worst was over. But no, that wasn’t quite the case.

The dreaded EYE DRILL!

The doctor explained that the metal spec had been in my eye long enough that it actually started to rust. Through a magnifying mirror he let me look in my left eye with my right. You could actually see a slightly darkened halo in my cornea where the spec had just been. And apparently rust is toxic to your cornea, so letting it fix itself wasn’t an option. So, do you know how they get rust out of your eye? They drill it out!

The drill is a small hand held job. It reminds me of the drill the dentist uses, which of course doesn’t help my state of mind at this point. The doctors tells me to relax (yeah, right!) and then starts drilling into my eye. What I learned later is that it’s more like grinding, not drilling. The idea is to grind/drill away all the areas where the rust has spread. Once the toxin is removed your eye heals over the spot where they drill. Basically, it’s the lesser of two evils. The drill does damage, but it’s damage you can recover from. Leaving the rust there would do more damage as it spread.

It all turned out fine, but it’s definitely not something I want to repeat. So, now when I work on readying my Corvette for sale or anything else in the garage that has the potential for flying pieces, I wear a complete face shield. I still wear my cool looking safety goggles just because it’s habit, but I have a full face shield sitting right by the grinder that I can put on over the safety glasses. You should consider it too if you spend any time in the garage. Your eyes aren’t exactly replaceable!

Timber Fences Vs Colorbond Fences

In my opinion if properly maintained a colorbond fence will outlast a timber fence by 5-10 years. Colorbond fences are made from steel so the paint will fade and the steel eventually rust but not so quickly as treated pine or even hardwood posts will rot through enough to lose stability.

A modification growing in popularity to increase the life of the timber fence is to use Galvanised steel posts. Galvanised Steel posts may eventually rust but the steel is thicker than colorbond steel so the posts will outlast colorbond posts however the timber will still generally warp, fade and rot therefore still living less time than a colorbond fence however if the fence is maintained correctly when the timber has seen its last days you can simply cut the timber frame away and re-use the same steel posts for your next fence.

This will reduce the cost of your next fence substantially because most of the labour in fence building is the setting of the posts which won’t be necessary. The price of a standard 1.8m high paling fence is not increased using steel posts as light gauge steel posts can be utilised for the same cost as timber posts.

If you wish to upgrade to a higher fence or lapped palings then this will increase the cost of the steel posts as heavier gauge steel will be required.Steel posts will increase the life of your timber fence however many people don’t like the look of steel posts and wish their entire fence to be made from timber therefore opting for timber posts.

Colorbond will generally last longer than timber fences with timber posts, it has other disadvantages. The heat from our hot Australian sun is absorbed into the steel and radiates onto plants close to the fence which can be harmful to the plants depending on how well the plant handles increased temperature.

Also colorbond fencing is easily bent or dented by kids, animals or vandals. For this reason I do not recommend a colorbond fence that backs onto a public area because vandals seem to love tagging them, (spraying them with spray paint) or kicking and denting them.

Although there are over 32 colours to choose from with your colorbond fencing, neighbors often do not agree and it can be costly to paint one side a different colour.

In summary both colorbond and timber fences have their advantages and disadvantages and your personal circumstances will depend which fence type would best suit your needs.

Can I Use Redwood Instead of Pressure Treated Lumber For My Mudsills?

I get asked this question a lot, short answer…Yes. But there is a reason that very few contractors use redwood over pressure treated (or p.t.) for mud sills and bottom plates.

Let me first say that I have remodeled homes in areas of San Francisco and Marin that were over 100 years old- built entirely out of redwood- and are still in great shape structurally. That is because redwood is naturally high in acids which prevents rot and keeps bugs from eating it, seeing as those are a homes two worst enemies, redwood makes good sense. Until you look at the price tag. Fact is many redwood areas were over logged and the ones that weren’t are now protected. As a result the price of redwood is very high compared to other framing products and they are now using younger growth trees which equals more knots, twists, and wanes.

So to cut cost Pressure treated lumber was introduced as a wood that could mimic the attributes of redwood but for half the cost. Pressure treated lumber is usually Douglas fir or sometimes hem fir and injected with many toxic chemicals (copper or zinc napathane being the most potent). These chemicals are what prevent the rot and pest infestations but have also been known to cause cancer by polluting ground water when disposed in land fills. In California, the scrap pieces of p.t. must be disposed of at a bio-hazard waste yard. Recently the levels of toxins have been lowered by approx. 50%.

It is also worth noting that it is never acceptable to attach un-treated Douglas fir lumber in direct contact with concrete. There are several ways to treat Douglas fir yourself and make it rot and pest resistant. The #1 way to do this is apply copper napathane in either a spray can or regular liquid to be brushed on. You can find this at just about any neighborhood hardware store but be careful doing this! It will stink bad for a day or two so don’t apply directly in living spaces. Be sure to read any and all factory directions regarding the application of any sealant or rot preventing product.

So to answer the question, yes… absolutely, redwood is a great product for mud sills. But if you are gonna use redwood, save yourself some money and get ‘rough cut’ lumber, this will be slightly larger so you’ll have to cut it down width wise, but the price difference is worth the extra work.

Different Kinds of Hoarding Boards to Choose From

Hoarding boards or commonly referred to as billboards can be made into an array of shapes and sizes. These boards, over the time have extremely evolved. There was a time when a painter was hired to paint on the board, and it was erected on a specific site so that people could look upon it during their commute. Now, the very board has been changed into different sizes that any business can choose from to suit their present demands.

To common people, a board is just a board, irrespective of its size. However, what matters is, its content and how wisely the space is used to paint the information on it. Therefore, size matters a lot in hoarding boards because they decide how much information will be posted on it and how many people would be reading it. For example, a huge billboard would be easily visible on a highway from a long distance, making it apparent for the commuters to read it. These kinds of boards can be expensive, but they make full use of their size.

Since hoarding boards never run out of fashion or from business, these remain the favourite among the advertisers as well as business owners. In an era of online marketing, it is in fact a great surprise that this outdoor marketing method has made a place of its own, which is why business owners still prefer to have physical boards hung outside for outdoor promotion.

A hoarding board maybe designed in different sizes and can be constructed over different types of structures. Let’s take a look at the main types of offbeat hoarding structures:

• Monopole – A single steel pool on which a board is hung on the very top. It is an expensive hoarding option, is usually seen on highways and probably the best to reap ROI.

• Steel I Beam – This hoarding construction option is very standard and the base is around 12’x24′. In terms of resale or marketing, this holds an average record.

• Steel Multi-pole – Although a cheaper substitute to the monopole hoarding, this is an economical option for those who still want to catch attention of the onlookers.

• Wooden Multi-pole – This is probably the oldest way to advertise, where a hoarding board can be hung over the telephone lines and other utility poles. It has a very poor ROI worth.

• Digital LED Boards – This one is the most expensive and the newest one in the market. It is exactly what we see at the places such as Time Square or in Las Vegas. These boards are large television boards assembled together and programmed in order to changed and display ads after a period of time. These are the most expensive hoarding boards to opt for, but can reach a massive crowd at the same time and return your invested money easily.

• LED Signs – The LED signs are also newest in the market and they allow the business owners to flash a particular message that is programmed to be displayed through the LED lights on a board. This is also a great way for marketing.

Hoarding boards are available in different sizes and types for a wide range of clients. Because of this diversity, one can easily choose one for their business advertising requirements.

Diabetic Diet: How Lemon and Lemon Water Can Help Cure Diabetes

I started buying fresh lemons by the bag after I found out how they can help cure diabetes. They are quite literally a miracle from Mother Nature! I have always loved fresh lemon but now I make an extra effort to eat lots of them. In fact, I believe lemons should be an important staple in every diabetic diet.

Lemon Lowers the Glycemic Index of Other Foods

Research has shown that lemon lowers the glycemic index of any food it is added to. And… we are not talking a few points here. The drop is very significant! To benefit from this, all you have to do is add a little squeeze of fresh lemon over your food. Almost like waving a magic wand, this will instantly lower the glycemic index of your meal. Best of all, lemon is such an excellent flavor enhancer, it makes many foods taste better too. I often add a squeeze of fresh lemon to a hot bowl of soup (yum!), casseroles, stove top goulashes, almost any kind of salad (including salads containing fruit), and sauteed vegetables (especially greens!). Anything with chicken or fish of course tastes especially good with lemon. Please note that it is best to add the fresh lemon right before you eat the food. If you cook it in soup, for example, it can become a little bitter and the health benefits won’t be quite as great.

Have A Glass of Lemon Water First Thing In the Morning

A glass of lemon water is the perfect way for a diabetic to start the day. Most people start their day with coffee (very acidic) and food that shift the pH of the body toward the acid side. However, if you shift the pH back toward the alkaline side, you will notice your blood sugar will go down. Moreover, your cell membranes will become more sensitive to insulin – i.e. you will be LESS insulin resistant. In fact, this will actually aid your body in repairing those damaged cell membranes.

Although lemons contain a weak acid, when they are metabolized by the body they have an alkalizing effect. If fact, they are the strongest alkalizing food you can eat! This is why adding lemon to your diet can go a long way toward restoring the pH of your body to the alkaline side where it should be. It has been found that most diabetics have a very acidic body pH (as have cancer patients). Bringing back to the alkaline side will go a long way toward helping to cure your diabetes.

Making lemon water is very easy. Just squeeze the juice from a half lemon (or a full lemon if you are a larger person) into a glass of water, swirl it around a little, and drink it up. Do this first thing in the morning on an empty stomach before you have your coffee or breakfast.

Lemons Have TWICE the Vitamin C As Oranges

This was a fact that surprised me as you always hear that orange juice is so loaded with vitamin C. Well, the orange’s citrus cousin has it beat with twice the vitamin C. Most people don’t realize but vitamin C is an extremely powerful antioxidant. It is important to note that vitamin taken in the form of food is MUCH better absorbed by the body than vitamin C taken in the form of a pill!

Vitamin C is at least part of the reason lemons interact with the cell membrane and make it less insulin resistant. However, vitamin C also have other very important benefits to the diabetic as well. For example, it increases the production of collagen which strengthens blood vessels. This is key since many diabetics have problems with circulation and arterial damage.

Aids In Repairing Digestion

Most diabetics have impaired digestive enzymes and lowered acidity in the stomach. This means that they don’t always reap the full benefit from the nutritious food they eat. Lemon goes a long way toward curing this problem as well.