Offshore Oil Rig Jobs

While many of the offshore oil rig jobs are physical in nature, many of the rig companies go out of their way to make sure your time spent onboard is an enjoyable one. For instance employees may find themselves living in accommodation wings that meet 4 or 5 star hotel standards – despite the fact that you a living in the middle of the ocean. While you are on board the company will usually meet all food, board and laundry expenses, along with travel and transfer costs.

There are a large number of offshore oil rig jobs that are available. The range of employment opportunities include:

Driller, Derrickman, Shakerhand or Mudman, Toolpusher, Floormen or Roughnecks, Motorman, Assistant Driller, Crane Operator, Roustabouts, Cleaner / Painter, Storekeeper, Mechanic / Electrician, Sub Sea Engineer, Rig Mechanic, Rig Electrician, Rig Welder, Barge Engineer, Ballast Controlman or Watchstander, Captain and Chief Engineer, Rig Medic and Safety Man.

Most offshore oil rig jobs call for a 14/21 day rotation that means you work for 14 days and have 21 off. This equates to you having approximately 3/5 of the year off on holiday.

In the offshore oil rig industry, there are opportunities for drilling employment and travel to countries such as: Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, the United States, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Venezuela, Mexico, Russia, Norway, China, Canada and the United Kingdom .

Typically salaries for roustabouts and roughnecks (drill deck workers) are approximately US $ 300 per day. Annual salaries work out to be approximately US $ 47,000.

More specialized jobs such as that of Driller is likely to make around $ 56,000 per annum, which Toolpushers, Drill Leaders and Supervisors are likely to earn around the US $ 75,000 – $ 100,000 mark per year.

Entry level positions typically make between US $ 50,000 – US $ 80,000 per annum. Trades, technical and professional positions will likely earn between US $ 70,000 – US $ 220,000 per annum.

Life Offshore

– You will be issued with safety boots hard hat safety glasses and coveralls.

– Keep a good attitude and be focused on why you wanted to work offshore.

– There are smoking rooms at various places on a rig where safety matches will be supplied.

– For meals you take off your work gear and eat in the galley.

– You may have to work a night shift or two as an oil rig is a 24 hour operation.

– Do not upset the radio operator, medic or chef. Helicopters, medical attention and food are most important.

Aboard an oil rig every piece of lifting equipment has a color code on it – this is an indication that it was tested as safe to use on the last lifting equipment check. Only items with the current color code on them should be used.

When working in the petroleum industry, do not bring alcohol, illegal drugs, weapons (of any description) including knives, flammable items, lighters and matches (safety matches will be provided in the smokers room) when working on energy jobs.

If working aboard an offshore rig, remove batteries from electrical equipment before checking in you luggage. If you are to be transported by helicopter your mobile phone may be taken from you before you board the helicopter.

A number of people working aboard oil rigs work are in support roles such as catering crew and doctors, etc. The following is an outline of what may be expected for doctors or medics. Because of the physical size of rigs, many of these types of roles are sole charged and one must be able to make do with the facilities and resources at end. In the case of doctors or medics based aboard oil rigs, it may be necessary to treat patients suffering from a huge variety of ailments and illnesses. Issues can arise as a lot of the workers aboard oil rig installations may speak foreign languages, so it is critical for the medical personnel to be able to quickly and effectively diagnose the problem. Generally medical staff will work one of two shifts, either day or night. Their role can often also include checking and maintaining stocks of emergency supplies, testing and verifying drinking water supplies are clean, as well as inspecting both raw and cooked foods from the kitchen. They are also often responsible for conducting weekly first aid seminars for all workers aboard the oil rig.

English Laundry Clothing – Edgy Designs Meet British Sophistication

English Laundry is a well-known clothing label that is a subsidiary of Global Rebels Inc. Designed by Christopher Wicks, the line of clothing features British themed clothing with styles inspired by traditional, and popular British clothing throughout the past decades. In keeping up with the British theme, the clothing will often feature British symbols such as the Union Jack flag, the English lion crest, and the royal crown.

The men’s line of English Laundry clothing includes the following styles: short sleeve woven shirts, short sleeve tees, jackets and blazers, long sleeve tees, long sleeve woven shirts, vests, sweaters, and hoodies. The short sleeve woven shirts include styles such as: Cotton City in white with denim blue, Dot in black or white, Village in white with blue, Flanders in white or tan, and Rylands in navy or white. The long sleeve woven shirts include the Paris Wood in blue stripe, the White Lion Hall in black or white, the Freddie Dreamer, and the Black Burn. Dress shirts feature Buxton in black or white, Boggart Hole, Ramsbottom, Tottington in white or black, Rosendale in tan and light blue stripe, and Ringway in white/tan. 

The women’s line of English Laundry clothing is not quite as extensive and features only tops. The selection includes: long sleeve woven shirts, jackets and sweaters, and vests. The long sleeve woven shirts include styles such as Luton in black, Whalley Range, Virginia in red plaid, Title II in pink and grey, Lady Barn in pink and grey, Kearsley in black and crème, and Cisterian Cotton City in pink. The ladies jackets and sweaters collection features the Heywod Sweater, Lord Strange belted embroidered jacket, Withington Trench Coat dress, and the plaid Northended Trench Coat dress. The vests collection features the Burnage vest, Prestolee II vest, Black Rose vest, and the Armada vest in black.

The English Laundry collection of bottoms for men includes jeans, shorts, and slacks. The jeans feature two designs: the Crest Jeans design or the Red Selvege jeans. The Crest jeans feature an English lion crest on the pant leg, and come in either black wash or vintage wash. The Red Selvege jeans have a skinny, straight leg and come in either dark wash or rinse wash. There are two kinds of shorts offered as well: the Peterloo Cargo Short, and the Tameside Cargo Short. The Peterloo Cargo short comes in either grey plaid or olive, each sporting a striped, plaid design. The Tameside Cargo Short comes in black, brown, or cotton. Both cargo short designs feature large pockets and are made of 100 percent cotton. The two designs of slack available are North Slacker and Hathersage slack.

English Laundry features tops, bottoms, accessories, and dress wear for men, as well as tops for women. The accessories include wallets, ties, scarves, and belts all which feature the British images as well. If you are looking for interesting new clothing with an edge, you are sure to find exactly that in the English Laundry line of clothing.

History of Land Surveys

Ever since ancient man decided that one piece of land would belong to one tribe and another piece of land to another, there’s been a need for land surveys. While the technology and means of mediation have definitely become more sophisticated over the years, the basic need to define our boundaries remains. Every major civilization in the history of the world utilized land surveying, some with more sophisticated and accurate results than others.

One of the first examples of surveying by mathematical means was by the Egyptians. The Great Pyramid at Giza, build around 2700 BC, demonstrates their prowess and knowledge of surveying techniques. When the Nile overflowed its banks and flooded the plains, the ancient Egyptians redrew boundary lines by using basic geometry. Also, an Egyptian Land register existed as early as 3000 BC. Though miles ahead of other civilizations of their time in regards to their surveying and irrigation techniques, nowadays we prefer a much more scientific method of marking boundaries rather than declaring “I swear by the great god that is in heaven that the right boundary stone has been set up,” when the boundary stones were replaced after the flooding waters of the Nile had receded.

Building upon the example of the Egyptians, the Romans went one step further and established Land Surveyor as an official position within the Roman Empire. They were called agrimensores, collectively known as Corpus Agrimensorum Romanorum and they performed various tasks throughout the Empire. They were remarkably thorough and precise in their methodology; they would create straight lines and right angles using simple tools. Once the lines were measured, they would create a furrow or a shallow ditch to represent the lines. Texts have been found which date as far back as the first century AD, and some furrows created by them still exist today.

In England in 1086, William the Conqueror wrote the Domesday Book, which covered all of England and contained the names of the land owners, the amount of land they owned, the quality of said land, and specific information about each area’s resources and peoples. While the breadth of information was impressive for the time, the technical surveying skills were lacking. The maps were not made to scale and did not accurately show locations.

It should not surprise anyone to learn that Napoleon Bonaparte was enthusiastic about proper surveying. When you’re trying to conquer the known world, it helps to have accurate maps. In 1908 he founded the cadastre, a comprehensive register of the property of a county, which included ownership details, location as precisely as possible, and as much information about the value and usage of the land. It also included maps drawn to scale both at 1:2500 and 1:1250. The usage of the cadastre spread quickly, but ran into problems in the more sparsely populated and disputed areas, as it needed to be updated every time anything changed. Napoleon felt that the establishment of the cadastre would be his greatest accomplishment in civil law.

Land surveying has even more applications today than in those of our predecessors. As our means of recording and preserving our history becomes more sophisticated, so do the means by which we measure and record our boundaries and land.

Horse Boarding Contract – What You Need to Consider Before You Sign

Before signing that horse boarding contract, have you ever stopped to wonder what all that fine print actually means? Reading over the entire contract positions you as an informed consumer with a more complete understanding of your responsibilities. Below we will be discussing why you need to sign a contract, the important sections on a typical contract, and how you can best protect yourself as a potential boarder.

Why Do You Need to Sign A Contract ?
A horse boarding contract is a binding document that spells out the agreement you have with the barn owner. Usually including your payment obligations each month and the rights of the boarding facility should you fail to comply with the contract.

It is also most likely a requirement of the owner for you to sign a horse boarding contract with them, and not your choice. The barn owner usually needs each boarder to fill out a contract for legal and insurance reasons. It is a means for barn owners to protect themselves from liability and hold you accountable for all fees and charges you incur while your horse is on their property.

What Are The Important Parts Of A Contract ?
Fees and services are spelled out clearly in most contracts. General board includes basic services for the daily care of your horse. The price will reflect the amount of daily services you expect to receive. For example, you will pay more per month if your horse has a stall compared to someone who has their horse on full pasture board.

Other added services may include administering wormer or daily supplements, regular exercise, horse training, and riding lessons. Also included in this section is information regarding the day of each month board is due with late fees and charges.

Most boarding facilities enforce health regulations on new horses coming into the barn. Usually you will have to provide proof of current negative coggins and in some cases prove that your horse is up to date on all shots and deworming. Some facilities may enforce a routine care schedule for veterinary care and deworming. If the boarding facility has specific requirements, they should be outlined specifically in the horse boarding contract. Keeping your horse current in all veterinary care will help stop the spread of equine illness.

Some contracts outline a procedure for emergency situations. As a horse owner you must be prepared for the unexpected. From small injuries to potential life or death situations, it is a good idea to provide an emergency phone number at the very least. A release to provide veterinary care when the barn owner can not reach you can help ensure your horse gets any needed veterinary care, especially in an emergency.

If you have an insurance policy on your horse for mortality, major medical or surgical coverage, you should always provide that information along with the emergency phone number for the insurance company should your horse become ill or injured. Most insurance policies require immediate notification of the illness or injury to honor the claim on the policy.

If your horse boarding contract does not have any information on equine insurance policies, provide the barn owner with an emergency phone number, a copy of the insurance policy, and the insurance emergency phone number. It may also be a good idea to keep a card in your wallet with the emergency insurance phone number and your horse's policy number.

A liability release may also be included in the contract or drafted as a separate document for you to sign. Basically it releases the boarding facility from any liability resulting in your willing participation in equine activities on their property. Some facilities will require a signed release from any additional party you may bring on to their property, even if it is your horse they intend to interact with.

How Can I Protect Myself?
Your best protection as a boarder is to keep yourself informed by thoroughly reading and understanding the horse boarding contract before you sign. By doing this you have the complete understanding of all your obligations as a tenant to the boarding facility.

You also understand the rights of the boarding facility should you fail to pay. After a certain number of missed payments, a boarding stable may have the rights to take ownership of your horse if outlined as such in the boarding contract.

Your best bet is to stay informed and continue to make your payments on time. Establish a good relationship with the barn owner and anyone largely in charge of the care of your horse. Make sure the facility has updated insurance and health information along with an easy way to contact you in case of emergency. Not all of the above discussed sections will appear on a contract so if you have any concerns make sure you inquire with the facility owner and keep copies of everything you sign for future reference.

Do’s and Don’ts of Planting Trees and Shrubs

In this article I would like to discuss the do’s and don’ts of planting that specimen tree that will determine its survival for years to come.

When you consider the activity of planting a tree or bush, the first thing to think about is where to plant it. Some zoning and neighborhood associations have rules about the types of trees you can plant and where you can plant them. Also consider right-of-way and property lines. Watch the space to see how much sun it gets. That’ll be important when you select your tree. All the trees at the garden center have tags that specify things such as sun or shade requirements. They’ll also tell you the size of the mature tree so you know how far to plant from buildings, fences, landscaping or overhead wires. The tags also have information about the right growing zone for each tree. Your local garden center plants are selected for the climate in your area. The native trees are best.

While the steps below focus on planting trees, the basic instructions for selecting, placing and planting shrubs are the same.

A good time to plant is in the fall or early spring, so the tree has time to acclimate before the freezing weather of winter or dry summer. You’ll also find a wider selection of trees in the garden center at these times. In warmer climates, trees can be planted in winter.

Once you have your trees and locations, it’s time to plant.

The first step in planting successfully is to consider the level of your area. If you are planting at a slope, level the planting area to keep all of the roots at the correct depth. Then dig the hole about two times the width and the exact depth of the container. Loosen the soil at the bottom and sides of the hole.

In step two, as you dig out the hole, break up the soil you remove from it and save that naturalized soil for backfill. Your tree will typically grow better in native soil than in bag soil. It’s important to use this soil because it contains all the good nutrients nature provides; not some artificial chemicals produced in a factory and even less actual soil like stuff found in the bagged soil product. Double-check that the hole is deep enough by temporarily placing the container with the tree in the hole. Then pull the container out and add some water to the hole to moisten soil at the bottom. Remember to pick up the tree from the bucket not by pulling up on the trunk of the tree. Pulling on the trunk could unnecessarily damage the root and tree connection.

In step three, remove the container by cutting it on two sides. Hold the tree by the root ball and place it in the hole. Gently loosen the roots to help them grow out. Make sure that the trunk is straight and the top of the root crown is even with the ground. Avoid stepping on the root system next to the trunk as this could damage the tree.

For step four, backfill the hole with soil, filling all around the roots. Don’t mound soil against the trunk. Gently tamp the soil to remove air pockets.

Step five calls for adding about 2 inches of mulch on the dug-up area, but don’t pile it against the trunk. This will help hold moisture and protect the roots in cold climates. See your local hardware mulch buying guide to learn about different types of mulch. There is a degree of acidity that a mulch provides. Different mulch release acidity at different rates. The guides will make suggestions about which mulch is best for the type of tree or bush you are planting.

Air Conditioning Service

Does your building need an HVAC upgrade? If you are experiencing trouble with your unit it could be one of two things: you are ready for an upgrade or you need a repair. Either way, by calling a technician out you can get your unit back on track. There are services available for both residential and commercial needs and they range anywhere from new installations to maintenance and repairs.

There are many reasons why keeping up with your air condition maintenance is important. Not only does a poorly working unit make your utility bills higher, but it puts your health in an uncomfortable position as well. Indoor air quality is important for any building whether it be residential or commercial. A poorly working unit could mean even bigger problems like mold. Mold problems should be remediated immediately if found in your home. Not only is mold a health threat but it can literally deteriorate the foundation of a building.

There are many signs to keep an eye out for if you suspect your air conditioning system needs to be serviced. The first one you may notice is a rise in the cost of your energy bill. Granted bills will increase depending on the season, there are also times when they increase because of your HVAC unit. A unit that is not working properly is typically using a lot more energy to function and in return your bills increase. Another sign that your system may need to be serviced is if different areas of a room or building are different temperatures than others. Unequally distributed temperatures in a building could mean that something is blocking or clogging the system. If something is clogging the system then it may not be able to reach the full area it is meant to regulate with heat or air. You may find cold or hot spots in a room or hallway as a symptom. Any odd noises or noises coming from the thermostat could also be signs that you need to call a technician.

There are always emergency services available for any air conditioning problems. There are local technicians available 24/7 if there is a problem that needs to be fixed immediately.

Keeping up with maintenance is always recommended. If you are interested in keeping your air condition system working its best, then try looking into a service maintenance agreement in your area. They are available for residential and commercial needs.

Toolbox Essentials: The Hammer

In 1949, Lee Hays and Pete Seeger wrote the song "If I Had a Hammer." The lyrics go like this:

"If I had a hammer I'd hammer in the morning, I'd hammer in the evening, All over this land …"

I'm glad they're not (or were not) my neighbours because all that hammering would drive me nuts! However, when I moved in to my very first apartment, I uttered the words "If I Had a Hammer" many times before I actually went out and bought one. Of course, the song is really not about having a hammer in the physical sense, but it is a catchy tune. The hammer is one of those tools that belong in every toolbox or tool drawer in every home. You do not even need a big one – a small 5-in-1 hammer is an excellent little tool that's not only a hammer, but it has four different size screwdrivers hidden in the handle.

The hammer is probably the oldest tool around. Evidence shows that stone hammers date back at least two million years. Early cave man constructed this tool using a stone attached to a sturdy wooden stick with strips of leather or animal sinew. I'm certain they were not using the hammer for hanging pictures in their homes, but I am certain that they were using the hammer for shaping bones and rocks into other useful implements.

There are a wide variety of hammers available, designed for specific uses. Here are a few of them:
• The most common is the claw hammer, used for driving or pulling nails or for opening crates and other general maintenance type work.
• Framing hammers, used for framing wooden houses, are heavy duty rip hammers with a straight claw.
• The ball peen hammer, with its rounded head is usually used for metalworking. It's the perfect tool for securing rivets.
• Sledgehammers, which are much larger than most other hammers are designed to distribute force over a wide area. They are most commonly used in destruction work, like breaking through drywall or masonry walls. They're also great for pounding in posts.
• Roofing hammers are used for, you guessed it, roofing. The hatchet side of the roofing hammer is designed for splitting wood shingles to size. The hatchet part of the roofing hammer can also be used for chopping out old roofing cement or flashing.
• Rubber mallets are used for work that requires a "softer blow" than that delivered by a metal hammer. They may be used for forcing tight-fitting parts together, for shifting sheetrock or plasterboard in to place, for upholstery work or for forming sheet metal. Typically they are used on materials where you do not want to leave a mark. A rubber mallet works great when securing the hub caps onto the rims of your car's tires, although I believe hub caps have become a thing of the past.
• Blacksmiths use a variety of hammers including twist hammers, dog-head hammers and cross-face hammers, just to name a few.
• A geologist's hammer, or rock pick is a hammer used for splitting and breaking rocks. These hammers are commonly used by paleontologists.

I have only scratched the surface of the types of hammers that are available. Whatever project you plan to undertake, be sure to select the right tools for the job. Regardless of the type of hammer you decide to purchase and use, remember safety first!

Breaking a Brick in Life

On rare occasion I have spoken with someone outside of the school about the complexities of breaking a brick. Typically, anyone who shares their interest in the martial arts to a martial arts “enthusiast” can expect the question, “Can you break a brick or a board?” I used to resent this question. Of all the benefits the philosophy of the martial arts gives you, both physical and spiritual, why ask such a silly question? I used to be of the mentality that breaking anything was akin to a cheap parlor trick, like a carnival game. The man at the carnival makes the game look easy, meanwhile he collects hundreds from poor suckers mistaking the carnival man’s experience for intelligence and feeling the need to prove themselves make a pitiful attempt at “one up manship.” I have since learned that there is a trick to any type of breaking, but it has its benefits on the mind the same as any training method the martial arts has. I have since gained a great deal of respect for the art of breaking.

This is not a long winded tangent about the magical art of breaking, the different types of breaking and how cool it is for demonstrations. Please do not misunderstand, I seriously enjoy attempting different breaks, despite the risk involved, and can see its benefits to my martial arts training in the physical sense. Despite these benefits I will elaborate on later, I would prefer to discuss the philosophy one can learn from breaking a brick in the martial arts in destroying mental barriers.

For most people, you can use the brick as a metaphor for any problem in your life that you have struggled with. The brick lies there, staring back at you, unmoving. You, unshaken by the weight the brick has on your mind, attempt to crash through it. Most people undoubtedly fail in their first attempt(I know I did), this is not surprising. Just as you may miss a detail in your conflict resolution at work, or forgot to study a chapter for the test, you make mistakes and must learn from them. The beautiful thing about breaking is you receive instant feedback, which makes learning your lesson much faster than waiting to see if your actions were correct When you strike the brick and your hand feels immediate pain and swells up like a balloon, you have acquired a great deal of information about breaking technique. Perseverance is a powerful trait one can hone and sharpen through consistent failure. You can definitely cultivate perseverance breaking because IT HURTS WHEN YOU MAKE MISTAKES, you know exactly what to change and can typically try again immediately. This is a popular belief for some styles of breaking, you don’t leave until you do the break. Imagine if we all adopted this philosophy to great challenges in our life, where we do not leave until it is resolved or a plan of action is created. We would find a deeper fulfillment in life I think.

Technique is important in a brick break. The amount of force you use to go through the brick is the same as the amount of effort you throw at a problem. You can have poor technique, smash the wrong part of your hand, and still smash through the brick(I have and do not recommend this). By throwing excessive force around, but with little technique, you can smash that thing and your hand to bits. Try to come at your problems with a bit of understanding of the situation. Study and refine, do not just jump into a colossal problem eager to make a colossal mistakes. A bit of study can save you a lot of energy and prevent a great deal of unnecessary damage to you. Learn how to come at the slab with a sophisticated approach that limits your chances of injury and your odds of victory are even greater. Once you have found the correct amount of force and the right approach, you will slice through your concrete problem like butter. You’ll also find that this big problem of your five years from now will seem like nothing.

The last reason breaking a brick is like breaking through a mental barrier is it helps to have a good teacher(emphasis on the good). “Sifu” means the one who has walked the path before you (but hey an Italian told me that so if any Chinese people want to clarify, email me). Ever have someone give you good advice because they knew where you were coming from and what you were trying to accomplish? These people can tell you what your doing wrong, amend your errors in judgement, and in five minutes do what would have taken you five weeks. Learning from their philosophy and having them in your back pocket makes your challenges much simpler. If you have a problem and you haven’t picked up a book, attended a class or found a teacher to help you out, I can guess how much action you have taken on solving it, typically zero.

Now the brick metaphor does not apply to every problem in every way, but it’s pretty darn close. My current problem is my Applied Statistics class, I have a mental barrier when it comes to math. As soon as I stop talking myself out of studying (the brick in my case) I will be much better off. So, take the five minutes and ask yourself, “what brick is stopping me in life today from taking that next step in my personal development?”

Finding a Family Friendly Apartment Home

With a little consideration, finding a family friendly apartment can be a move you look forward to. Look at these characteristics and make the appropriate decision when you visit apartment complexes:

Space. Is there enough closet space for all of the toys, equipment, clothes, cleaning supplies, etc? If not, does the complex have additional storage available, or is there a self storage business nearby that will be affordable and convenient?

Pesticide smell. The chemicals are not good for your children, and if you can smell it, somebody may have felt there was a big enough problem to really douse the place.

Do the windows seal tightly. See if you find evidence of water stains or excess humidity. Does the plaster look good, or is there separation of baseboards from floor? Any or all of these might indicate that the apartment, or the building, has a mold problem. Leaky windows and doors will increase your utility bills.

How are the apartments laid out? Most apartment buildings tend to be developed in a line plan, that is, apartments above and below are the same configuration, so bedrooms, kitchens, and living rooms all stack up. This can be beneficial as childrens rooms will be over childrens rooms, etc. If possible, try to view an apartment when families are likely to be home, this will allow you to see how noise transfers between units.

Besides the apartment and complex itself, consider these items to make the most of family living in an apartment.

Are there accessible toddler options like art, music, physical activity, language? For older children, is there a community center, YMCA or other place where they can safely get exercise rain or shine? What about day care, if that’s something you need and want, is it in the neighborhood or en route to work?

Is there easy access to the essentials? Never underestimate the value of proximity to milk, bread, and diapers. The same goes for other service businesses that can make your life easier, such as a dry cleaner, drugstore/pharmacy and fast food for delivery (pizza, etc).

What entertainment options are nearby? Is there a library, museum, or park that is convenient and will satisfy or interest the needs of the family? Do children have a place to ride their bikes or roller blade safely?

By taking these items into consideration as well as your own wants and needs you can find an apartment that fits you and your family.

What is the Best Flat Iron?

Deciding on what is the best flat iron for your hair is not easy. Many desire straight, sleek and shiny hair that looks salon perfect. But to get that look, you need to put some thought into the subject and then do your research.

There are many top rated and popular flat irons to choose from. Each different brand has its pros and cons, its admirers and deriders, and its function and lack of function. Some leading brands of flat iron are well known: Sedu flat irons, Solia flat irons and Corioliss flat irons. Whilst other brands are not so well known: Conair flat irons and GHD flat irons. To choose a flat iron that works best for you needs a little research.

By far the best way of deciding which flat iron is best for your hair, is by talking to friends. Find out what flat iron works best for them and why. Talking to friends and family about flat irons costs you nothing and you'll get great real advice and not the sales pitch of a company sales department.

Next, go and get reviews of flat irons off the internet and hair magazines. Again, this can be got for free. There are many reviews posted online from real people with their frank experiences and opinions on just about every flat iron on the market.

Talk to professional hair stylists. After all, stylists use flat irons more than anyone else. Flat irons recommended by stylists will be of high quality and durability, giving their customers perfect, sleek and smooth hair time after time. Do not be shy; most people love to give advice when their opinion is sought. Flat iron brands such as Paul Mitchell, CHI and Solia are quite popular amongst professional hair stylists.

Some companies often give free demonstrations of their flat irons in shopping malls and department stores. Do not be shy or embarrassed. Sit down and have them demonstrate how good their flat iron is. As well as trying to sell you their product, the stylist will probably give you lots of useful tips on how to use a flat iron.

Decide on how much you are willing to pay for a flat iron. Once you've decided, take a look at those brands of flat irons.

The following are some of the best cheap flat irons available: Remington flat irons, Hot Tools flat irons and Conair flat irons.

For mid-range prices, the following are some good and reasonably priced flat irons: HAI flat irons and Solia flat irons.

At the higher end you have: Paul Mitchell flat irons, T3 flat irons and Sedu flat irons.

If you can afford it – it's one of the most expensive on the market – the GHD flat iron is a superb flat iron. Its sleek looks, features and performance are second to none.

One final point about cost: you generally get what you pay for; therefore if you have a very curly or difficult hair, you should buy one of the more expensive flat irons.

Deciding on what is the best flat iron should not be rushed. When you do buy your flat iron; learn how to use it. Most people are disappointed with the performance of their flat iron, not because the flat iron is not any good, but because they do not know how to use it properly.

Helmet Cameras Make Great Gifts!

While keeping in mind the particular sport and hobby of the person you are buying for is important when choosing which type of helmet camera suites best for your loved one. For the one who loves to race, snowboard, ski, motorcycle, or mountain bike, there is nothing more enjoyable than receiving a helmet cam to capture all their adrenaline pumping moments. Choosing the right helmet cam that suites the needs of the receiver is important so the camera will adapt to the sport or hobby that will be filmed. Features such as being wireless or not, remote control access, and being weatherproof are among some of the options you must narrow down when purchasing for your enthusiasts.

When trying to choose a helmet cam for your loved ones needs, figuring out if a wireless helmet camera is probably first on your the list of options to consider. Having a wireless helmet cam will allow one to record hands free without the hassle of messing with wires and having to wear the camera in a particular position to record. Although, the higher quality helmet cameras usually have one cable that connect to the DVR for playback of the video instantly and have a higher resolution, than the wireless helmet cams.

Some options also out their available for helmet cameras are remote control access and being weatherproof. Some of the more expensive cameras which are high quality offer remote control access so one can stop and control the recording with a remote, instead of stopping to actual perform the task of stopping and recording. This option is a definite plus for many racers, skiers, and snowboarders. Usually when performing these types of sports, there is no time to stop while in the moment of action to mess with a camera, so having a remote is excellent for these sports. Most cameras on the market today are weatherproof. Making sure that you choose the camera that will withstand the conditions of the one who is using the camera is important. Most of the helmet cameras on the market are durable and are waterproof up to 100 or so feet and dust proof. Most of these cameras will uphold in harsh conditions and challenging environments.

Gift certificates are great options for personalizing your helmet camera to fit your loved ones needs. They allow the buyer the flexibility to choose the dollar amount of the helmet cam according to your budget and allow the one receiving to choose which helmet camera suits him or her.

A helmet camera can make the perfect personalized Christmas gift that will continue to be appreciated all year long. A helmet cam is relatively inexpensive and your thoughtfulness will be remembered all throughout the year when your loved one records all their memories with your gift.

UK Swiss Tax Treaty

UK-Swiss Tax Treaty Announced

The UK and Swiss governments have now signed the long awaited UK-Swiss Confederation Taxation Cooperation Agreement. The new treaty still has to be ratified before coming into effect, but is expected to be fully effective from 1 January 2013.

The treaty will generally apply to UK taxpayers who held a Swiss account as of 31 December 2010 and where the account remains open as of 31 May 2013.

Non-UK domiciliaries will have to prove, by way of a certification by a lawyer or tax agent that they have claimed the remittance basis of taxation for the year in question, and give notice to opt-out of the agreement. Under the terms of the agreement, UK taxpayers may either:

1) Retain anonymity and suffer an initial one off deduction of between 19-34%, or

2) Make a voluntary disclosure to HMRC regarding their Swiss assets and income.

Option 1

There will be an initial one-off deduction, in order to settle past tax liabilities, of between 19% and 34% applied to the balance of a UK resident's existing Swiss accounts as of 31 December 2010.

The rate charged depends upon the number of years of investment and the account movement. It is estimated that the applicable rate will be 20-25% for most taxpayers.

In addition to this from 2013 there will be a withholding tax of 48% on interest income, 27% on Capital Gains, and 40% on dividends.

Taxpayers who pay the levy and withholding tax will be able to retain anonymity (subject to EU approval).

Option 2

Alternatively the taxpayer can make a full disclosure of untaxed Swiss income and gains to HMRC. HMRC will then seek unpaid taxes, interest and penalties from this disclosure.

If a disclosure is made, the taxpayer's accounts will not be subject to the one off charge and future withholding tax. However the taxpayer must inform their banks that they have chosen to disclose otherwise the one-off levy will be automatically applied.

What to do now

It is likely that UK persons with undisclosed Swiss income will need to contemplate whether to make a disclosure or pay the one off levy and suffer the withholding tax moving forwards.


There is no specific disclosure facility contained within the Treaty, so HMRC will levy penalties at normal rates on any liabilities disclosed. HMRC can assess such tax liabilities for up to twenty years so the total cost of tax, interest and penalties could be very high.

More generous Disclosure A Opportunity is available using the Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility ( the LDF) . The LDF provides certainty of settling past worldwide tax issues, with liabilities being limited to those arising after April 1999, and with a set 10% penalty rate for years up to 5 April 2009. More importantly, the LDF provides immunity from prosecution.

Pay the Levy and Withholding Tax

The one off charge is levied on the value of Swiss funds as of 31 December 2010 and therefore only clears tax liabilities associated with those funds and therefore does not guarantee that all past Swiss liabilities will be settled.

As a result it does not offer immunity from prosecution but does however ensure that anonymity is retained.

Move Assets to another Jurisdiction

It is possible to move assets to another jurisdiction before the 31 May 2013 to avoid the regime; however Swiss banks will be providing information to HMRC on the top ten destinations where funds are being moved. If the taxpayer is subsequently caught they will be liable for tax due going back to 20 years, penalties of up to 200%, public 'naming and shaming' and the risk of prosecution.

Power Tool Repair: How to Know When Your Bearings Need Replacement

As you know, bearings are pretty dang important to the overall functionality of your power tools. They are, in fact, totally integral. They are the catalysts of the linear and rotational movement within our power tools and, essentially, the physical mechanism that most helps a tool’s moving parts move. Without bearings, or even with bearings that are a bit worse for wear, a power tool is rendered fundamentally obsolete.

Ordinarily, bearings go bad simply as a result of standard wear and tear. Of course, no power tool nor part is entirely immune to operator error or misuse, but for the most part, bearings simply wear out. Fortunately, the symptoms of bad bearings are relatively simple to detect. For instance, the squeal of a failing bearing is nearly unmistakable, your power tool might generate excess heat or fail to engage altogether leaving you with naught but the gentle hum of a sad motor choking on itself to just get moving. It’s a sad lot to be a bad bearing.

The sound a weathered bearing creates is, by every definition, a squeal; a shrill kind of bleating emitting from the belly of your power tool. Essentially, it is an uncomfortable sound which largely results from the general discomfort of the bearings (and of the tool’s surrounding components) themselves.

This squeal is commonly the result of regular wear, particularly in the form of bearings that have simply dried-up. Of course, a bearing requires a certain amount of greasy lubrication to do its job. As time and the bearings themselves roll on, though, that grease dries and disappears resulting in too much friction between the bearings and the parts they propel.

Because most bearings are self-contained, they can not be re-lubricated; the entire bearing must be replaced. I reiterate, do not attempt to repack your bearings with grease, this is asking far too much of your power tool and extremely too much of the little parts that make it work; to avoid damaging the tools surrounding components, the bearing must be replaced – promptly.

Usually in addition to said squeal, where bearings are bad and as a result of the motor simply working far too hard to perform, a tool will generate excess heat. This excess heat can become so great, in fact, that in extreme cases, power tool motors have melted. Before this most drastic outcome, though, damage still occurs within the tool. Internal parts can become charred, burned, or otherwise heat-damaged. This, of course, significantly diminishes the performance of the part (and the tool) and usually merits the replacement of a few internal parts.

In the event of bad bearings, a tool might also lock-up or simply stop working altogether. If the bearings are too dry or otherwise too damaged to move, the tool will essentially freeze. Not necessarily is the cold sense, but certainly in the motionless, non-functioning sense. In such a case, one hundred pulls of the trigger will make no difference to the tool or motor, you will simply hear a hum. The hum of electricity surging into a machine that can’t process or convert that energy. The residual heat of this effort will also cause the aforementioned heat-issue and can destroy vital components inside your tool.

Accordingly, cease using your power tool if the bearings are bad. If the tool squeals, if it produces excess heat during use, or if it chokes and freezes in lieu of its expected performance, stop using the tool completely and immediately. Instead, take it to an authorized service center for a bearing replacement and perhaps for a bit of a check-up to ensure the tool hasn’t incurred any heat-damage in the battle of the bearing. Don’t fret, this is a generally inexpensive procedure.

And after all that, you now know how to diagnose a bad or failing bearing in your power tool. Remember, the most important part of power tool use is using your tools right and properly maintaining them. These machines bring joy, purpose and productivity to our lives and deserve a bone or two (in the form of care and maintenance) in return.

Electronics Engineer

Electronics affects many parts of our lives and an electronic engineer can work in a large number of sectors from radio and satellite production, to the field of acoustics, robotics, mobile phones, telecommunications, signals processing, nanotechnology and others.

The job of an electronics engineer is to research, design and test electrical components in order that electricity is effectively and efficiently utilised in equipment. They may work with engineers from other disciplines as part of a project, and may see projects through from start to finish, beginning with the research and design, and ending in the actual implementation of the product and processes.

Typical duties associated with this job include

o Discussing proposals and coming up with new systems and circuits in order to develop their ideas
o Create prototypes and test them
o Altering the design of products in order to make them work more efficiently
o Check that the product's specification allows it to be consistently produced and fit for purpose – oversee quality control
o Produce detailed technical specifications which can be utilised by appropriate people
o Adhere to all safety aspects
o Manage budgets and make decisions based on cost analysis
o Manage teams of technicians and make sure plans are being followed

Electrical engineers have access to a large number of employers from the government (defence and MOD departments), to telecommunications companies, research establishments, electronic equipment manufacturers, digital technology and automotive sector, utility companies, hospitals and educational organisations.

Salaries start at around £ 22,000 to £ 30,000 and upon gaining experience can be up to £ 60,000 and above. Salaries vary according to the sector worked in. Most electrical engineers work in areas where there is a lot of manufacturing and work for small to medium sized firms. The hours of work may be long, since the world of electrical engineering is deadline driven and very competitive. Work abroad is possible and career advancement may be helped if an engineer has knowledge of a second language. If working in Europe, engineers can apply for status as a European engineer (Eur Ing) which provides professional recognition abroad and increased employability.

An Explanation of Anomalous Posterior Vitreous Detachment

PVD, or Posterior vitreous detachment, is a result of changes to the macro-molecular structure of vitreous gels, resulting in liquefaction. This is concurrent with some alteration of the extra-cellular matrix at the vitreoretinal interface, which allows the posterior vitreous cortex to separate from the limiting lamina within the retina.

Anomalous PVD, or APVD, is a result of gel liquefaction which exceeds the degree of vitreoretinal dehiscense. The clinical variations of APVD depend on where within the fundus the vitreoretinal adhesion is the strongest. Along the periphery, APVD can result in detachments and retinal tears. Within the macula APVD causes vitreomacular traction syndrome, which results in vitreoschisis with macular holes – or this may contribute to diabetic macular edema. At the retina and the optic disc, APVD can cause vitreopapillary traction, promoting neovasculation in the retina and optic disc.

By unifying vitreoretinal diseases and integrating them into the framework of APVD, an underscore is placed upon the need to more effectively treat and prevent these disorders by replicating two main components of a PVD: gel liquefaction, and vitreoretinal dehiscense. Pharmacologic vitreolysis aims to mitigate APVD by breaking down vitreous macro-molecules while weakening vitreoretinal adhesion. This helps to detach the posterior vitreous cortext more safely. Not only would this facilitate surgery, but if performed during the initial, natural state of the disease, it should prevent progression of the disease.

In layman’s terms, this unifying theory poses that the eye gel will naturally liquefy, thereby starting to weaken its retinal attachment. As it retracts from the interface between the vitreous and retina, it is called a PVD.

APVD results from continued attachment of the gel even as it begins to naturally shrink away from the retina. This theory promotes the use of chemicals, microfibrin, or fibrin, in order to facilitate the releasing of the vitreous from the traction which it is exerting on the retina.

I feel that this theory has greater value among young patients. However, older patients may find that the vitreous has changed so much that this becomes unnecessary. However, it is still a floater treatment which bears mention and discussion.