Stainless Steel Vs Oak Barrels – A Comparison

Oak barrels have now been replaced by stainless steel wine barrels. Steel drums are durable, which means that they can be used for years at a stretch. It makes economic sense for wineries to use steel barrels in place of the oak drums.

Wine making is an art that requires years to learn. Every aspect of wine making is an art, right from choosing the grapes to the storage of the wine. If you mishandle any part of the wine making process, the quality of the product will suffer. So, you have to make sure that everything is done in the right manner. It is not something you can do in haste.

Aging is an important part in the process of wine making. It can make all the difference in the taste. Ask any wine expert and they will tell you that aging is the difference between a good and bad wine most of the time. The aging of wine is now done in stainless steel barrels.

Oak barrels, which were once used for storing wine and aging it, have now been replaced by stainless steel barrels. A major benefit of oak barrels was that they imparted a distinct flavor to the wine. Wine lovers all across the world loved the flavor. Even when the oak barrels were replaced by stainless steel barrels in commercial wineries, there was no change in the fondness of the enthusiasts for oak flavor in wine. The wineries maintained that flavor by adding oak chips, planks or powder to wine stored in the barrels.

There are some reasons behind the popularity of stainless steel drums. These barrels are durable, which means that they can be used for years at a stretch. Oak barrels, on the other hand, have short life spans. Those barrels can be used just once or twice as wood loses its flavor in a year or two. Wine is a product that is inherently acidic and corrodes the wooden barrels. The effect drastically reduces the life of the oak barrels.

The economic advantage steel barrels provided became an important factor behind their popularity. Wineries require barrels in large quantities and steel barrels help them reduce costs. Oak barrels are costly and do not last very long. Hence, when the wineries have the option of using steel barrels, they use them and bring down their costs. At the same time, they also take care that there is no compromise in the oak flavor. The use of steel barrels results in substantial savings for the wineries.

Steel barrels have another major advantage. They have neutrality of flavor. It means that the usage of such drums has no effect on the flavor of the wine. One can add any flavor to it, which was just not possible with oak barrels. In other words, you have the freedom of adding flavor to the steel barrels. This makes steel barrels perfect for flavor experimentation.

Wineries are unable to control the air exposure of wine in oak barrels as these drums are naturally porous. Although they are good for storing wine, these drums limit your options when it comes to air control. As such, wineries lose the ability to control the taste of wine. When using stainless steel wine barrels, wineries can ensure controlled exposure of air to the wine. They can create an exact taste in the wine.

There is more. Stainless steel barrels are easier to clean in comparison with oak barrels. Thanks to the smooth inner surface, these can easily be cleaned. It is completely free of scratches which prevents the lingering of the smell of previous wines. There are absolutely no remnants that can interfere with the quality of wine.

Social Planning

Most Western countries have a high degree of industrialization and modernization which results in a lot of prosperity. This prosperity, in turn, results in a society in which all citizens can be seen as ‘not poor’. This trivial fact is not something which can be seen as a miracle or a natural phenomenon, but as a result of planning. In turn, the society as a whole must be organized in such a way that guarantees can be given to its citizens for their individual well-being. This egalitarian principle in Western countries is conceptualized in the term ‘welfare state’. It is not the intention of this article to provide a historical account of the emergence of the welfare state, but the main goal is to discuss an important catalytic factor in the emergence of the welfare state: social planning.

Social planning is not synonymous to governmental planning because it is a broad term which is relevant for numerous kinds of planning. Almost every form of planning, whether it is education planning, health planning, business planning or science planning, all have clear and definite social characteristics. For this reason, a social planner can have different academic backgrounds: sociologist, economist, business administration, public administration, etc.

What is social planning? Planning can be seen as a process in which a definite number of steps in time are undertaken which will result in a strategy necessary to cope with a certain problem. Take, for instance, a housewife who wants to cook her family a nice dinner. She will first decide what sort of meal she will prepare. She will make a list of the necessary ingredients and she will go to the nearest supermarket and buy these ingredients. Back home she will cook the meal which will be ready around dinner time. Her family can enjoy a warm home cooked meal made with fresh ingredients. This is all the result of planning albeit a simple form of planning.

Unfortunately, the social reality in which we live in is a lot more complex and confusing. So, to solve all those complex problems, the planner has developed numerous techniques and methods of planning. In general, all planners tend to agree that there are two kinds of planning. The first type of planning is called substantial planning. This form of planning is connected with highly specialized planning in a certain sector or area. For instance education planning, spatial planning, business planning, etc. are forms of substantial planning. The second type of planning is procedural planning. This type of planning is concerned with general characteristics of the planning process. The central question of this form of planning is: how can I shape a planning process? This article is about the latter form of planning rather than a specialized method of application of planning. A logical consequence of procedural planning is that planning must be seen as a process. And this process is a process of analysis, anticipation, design, action, and application.

Planning as a ‘learning process’

Planning is not an activity which can be seen as a process which is uncontroversial. The science of planning is still growing and the concept of planning is numerous. Every planner has his own way of looking at planning and this has resulted in a ‘jungle’ of planning definitions and concepts. Fortunately, this fact has given a strong impulse to the growth of the science of planning. In the beginning, planning was solely a technical and industrial engagement. But recently planners realized that planning should be seen as a social activity. For this reason, sociologists developed a strong interest in the systematic analysis of planning. A significant consequence of this approach of planning is that the learning aspects of planning have been recognized. So, the concept of planning as a ‘learning process’ can be seen as the most recent approach of planning. This form of planning has integrated certain aspects from the system theories, cybernetics, and the communication and social theories.

A major characteristic of the system theories is that the social reality is seen as a system which consists of subsystems. If we know that the reality consists of subsystems, then it is possible to make models. Models actually mirror the reality which consists of subsystems. Take, for instance, a mouse who is trying to escape from the claws of a cat. The mouse itself has a dynamic system; it is possible for the mouse to constantly change its system. In order to escape from the cat, the mouse can run into various directions which, in turn, depend on its sight, smell, and hearing capacities. So, the mouse possesses a dynamic system. For planning, however, a dynamic system is not enough because the social reality is also changing constantly. The consequence of the changing social reality is that our analysis of the situation is easily outdated and irrelevant.

There are two strategies to cope with this problem: using forecasting techniques which can be incorporated in the planning process and/or the incorporation of feedback mechanisms in the planning process. The latter strategy is actually an aspect which has been derived from cybernetics. So, it can be stated that planning is a learning process since new ideas, changes in the reality, and experience are all incorporated in the planning system by feed-back mechanisms. It is actually information (the learning aspects of planning) which is incorporated in the planning process; without information we cannot function properly.

There is one final aspect which must be incorporated in the planning system: participation. It is actually an aspect of the communication and social theories. Planning is usually not an individualistic activity, especially when the problem to be solved is complex and when a lot of people are involved. So, participation of others in the planning process is very important since it is essential to make a good and successful plan rather than an unrealistic plan.

Planning as a decision-making process

In most cases, planning is highly related to decision making. Decisions are constantly being made in reality without any difficulties at all. Decisions can be made by simple intuitions, but it can also be made by a deeper analysis of a problem. An example of an intuitive decision: which hand do I use writing a paper or what is the best position for me to get into sleep in bed at night, etc. This kind of decision making happens automatically; there is no need for a deeper analysis. The planner, however, is not a person who believes that all his problems can be solved with intuitions. If this is the case, a dangerous situation might arise for the planner himself or for the people who are affected by his plans. A sensible social planner realizes that the social reality is a complex reality. For this reason, the social planner will base his plans on rational analysis. It must be mentioned that a social planner is also a human being who is not perfect.

Planning is about decision making. In turn, decision making is based on analysis; this means that a certain part of the reality must be subdivided into a certain number of parts. These parts can be analyzed which means that all the consequences of all the problem-solving alternatives must be screened. However, it is impossible to make a complete analysis of the entire reality which is too complex in nature.

Usually, there is not enough time, money, and intellectual capabilities to solve a social problem in a total manner. This does not mean that that an incomplete analysis is useless because it will clarify the problem a lot more and there is no doubt about the usefulness of an incomplete analysis. In order to clarify this, an illustration can be given. Imagine there are two alternative plans available and it is absolutely necessary that one option is chosen. In addition, it is known that the results of plan A are less satisfying than the results of plan B. The chances that plan B will succeed is only 40%. But it is also known that in case plan B is successful, then the results at the end is much better than the results of plan A. Which plan do you have to choose? The following calculations will provide more clarity. Suppose the success of plan B will be given the value of 1 and the failure of plan A will be given the value 0. In case plan A succeeds, a value of 0.7 can be given, but if plan B fails, a value of 0.2 can be given. The expected value for choosing plan A can now be calculated:

(0.8 x 0.7) + (0.2 x 0.0) = 0.56

For choosing plan B, the calculation is:

(0.4 x 1.0) + (0.6 x 0.2) + 0.52

So, in this case plan A should be the obvious choice.

Planning, forecasting, and policy making

It was already mentioned that the process of planning includes anticipation. This process of anticipation or forecasting is actually the process of predicting the future. Planning and forecasting cannot be separated from each other, but cannot be separated from the process of policy making. The process of policy making can be defined as the search for certain means in order to reach an acceptable goal in the future. In other words, problems we have today must be eliminated in the future and it is our task to find means to achieve this goal. Planning in this case must be seen as a supporting factor of policy making consisting of the following processes: preparation, consideration, decision, execution, evaluation, and feedback. The relationship between planning, forecasting, and policy making is useful because governments, politicians and policy makers need all these instruments.

Choose Patio Furniture That is Easy to Clean

If you’re looking forward to spring, you can get ahead of the game by shopping for the perfect patio furniture now. Consider all your options and select the furniture that matches both your style and your desire for convenience.  That means finding patio furniture that is easy to clean.  Common selections include plastic, aluminum, wicker, teak and wrought iron.

Are you still stumped about what patio furniture to buy? Maybe you should make the decision based upon the material that is easiest to clean. It might be odd to think about cleaning before you make a purchase but if you take this step, you may find that the best patio for you is the convenient one.

Plastic patio furniture is cleanable with a high-pressure hose and some detergent or bleaching agents. Wicker requires more care to preserve the weave and style of the piece. Aluminum can oxidize and wear but with a little elbow grease and protectant, the lightweight pieces may be perfect for your patio.

Heavier and sturdier pieces may be made of teak or wrought iron. Both provide elegant and stylish looks for your patio but come with additional cleaning concerns. Teak develops a grayish patina as it ages unless you regularly maintain and work to protect the original wood color. Wrought iron may rust if dipped or soaked with water and needs mild detergents and light care so that it can be protected for decades of use.

These are just a few of the considerations involved in selecting the decor for your patio. Beyond the ease of use and cleanability consider, the style and value of the patio furniture. Your patio furniture can be as stylish as the rest of your home. Shop around and be choosy so you can find patio furniture that is cleanable, stylish and convenient for your life.

Lost Honda Prelude Keys

All models of Honda Prelude 1997 to 2001 models were launched with Immobilizer system and losing the key would be a nightmare. If you own a Honda Prelude, you know that as per the consumers’ feedback and reviews, the fast paced Honda Prelude from 1997 to 2001 came with one defect- the ignition switch interlock did not function properly. This caused the key to be in ‘off’ position and you could remove it but without shifting the transmission to the ‘park’ feature. Apart from this aspect, Prelude is a beautiful car to drive.

Most car companies have incorporated the Immobilizer function into nearly all vehicles as a theft deterrent mode. But on the contrary, if you are in Chicago and lose Honda Prelude car keys, getting a replacement is not just getting a key cut at the local key maker, it is big time expensive.

Immobilizer keys are coded and replacements are only done by some of the best Chicago locksmiths that have state of art Immobilizer key making machines and latest know how. The only other option is taking your car back to the Honda dealership and getting it replaced by the company after paying $800- $1000. In most cases, a good Chicago locksmith will be able to help you if you lose Honda Prelude key.

Affordable and experienced Chicago locksmiths that have state-of-art machines with coding and precision cutting for reflashing and cutting spare keys also provide other services like laser keys, electronic keys, and new transponder keys apart from lost car keys replacement facility. They have the capability to program transponder keys, immobilizer keys and high security keys.

Understanding Immobilizer System

The Immobilizer system protects your car from being stolen. It works on the feature that only the proper coded unique ignition key that is used in the ignition switch will be allow the engine to start, thus safeguarding your car. Any other car key used will just disable the circuit. All Immobilizer keys come with a chip or a transmitter in the head and the code is matched when you put in the ignition key with the engine switch. The Immobilizer key also indicates the control unit for activating the ignition system so if you have lost Honda Prelude car keys, you would need the services of an expert Chicago locksmith. They have the infrastructure to reflash a new Immobilizer system and cut you corresponding keys.

As one of the leading Chicago locksmiths suggests, just in case, you have the car key which is not working, and need to just get a spare cut, you will not need the red key. But if you have lost all Honda Prelude car keys, then you will need to have your Immobilizer system reflashed and the red key will be required. In Honda Prelude cars, it is best to use approved Immobilizer blank keys. You also need to protect your Immobilizer keys from heat, humidity and liquids.

If you have lost Honda Prelude keys, do not try to attempt and alter the system on your own as electrical circuits may be damaged or other electrical issues may render your car in operable. As Honda Prelude owner, you must have received the key number plate along with your car keys. This key number is essential when you need to get a spare or a lost key replaced. If you intend buying a Honda Prelude 1997 to 2001 model, ask the present owner and keep the number plate safely. So, if you have lost Honda Prelude keys, don’t fret. With express services provided by expert Chicago locksmith, getting a spare transponder key is no hassle and the service costs you much less than going the company for spares.

Chinese Use Acupuncture to Get Rid of Bad Breath

In all of my research on halitosis and its treatment, perhaps this is the most uncommon way to cure bad breath I have come across. As an American we are not accustomed to using acupuncture as a normal treatment. We don’t think of Acupuncture as how to get rid of bad breath. Acupuncture is the art of using tiny needles placed into the skin in strategic areas to block certain nerves to change the flow of Qi which is pronounced “Chee.” It is believed that the Qi is the energy flowing through our bodies that gives use the power think, move, work, and feel.

Chinese medicine has been practiced for thousands of years. Their approach to medicine is much different than that of the western world. They believe that the health of the body mind and spirit is all connected through Qi. The balance of the Yin and Yang is the basic principle of Chinese traditional medicine. It is said that all life is born from the interdependency of the Yin and the Yang in an everlasting motion that creates good health. When one or the other gets out of balance the whole body can be thrown off. This is when disease and illness can inter the body. In Chinese medicine balance and health go hand in hand.

The Chinese believe that bad breath is caused by a hot stomach. As the name implies there is too much heat coming from the stomach. This can cause such problems as bad breath, gum disease and swelling, mouth ulcers, frontal lobe headaches. Excess stomach heat can be caused by a number of factors like extremely high stress levels, bad diet, stomach flu, eating food that has turned bad, and much more. It really is quite common, in fact a lot of time it goes undetected and people just choose to suffer with it and try taking antacids. This only masks the problem. If you can find the cause of your hot stomach then it can be reversed, if not perhaps acupuncture will help. I know it sounds strange and maybe a little scary to think of allowing some stranger to poke a bunch of needles into your skin.

Remember acupuncture has been around for a very long time. In fact the Chinese have been perfecting the skill of acupuncture for thousands of years. You don’t think it would still be used if it didn’t work do you. With acupuncture the balance between the Yin and The yang can be restored thus restoring health to the body. This in turn will allow the stomach to return to its normal temperature. Then the bad breath should be cured. It is very important when looking for a qualified acupuncturist that you do your homework. Ask around; try to find somebody to recommend someone that is reputable.

Don’t just go to the first one in the phone book. After all we are talking about your health. Of course this is only one solution to having bad breath. Some people are very afraid of needles and some just don’t like the idea of having a bunch of needles being poked into their bodies. If this is not right for you then by all means see some of my other articles. I have many on the subject of bad breath cures.

Dry Ice Blasting For Historical Restoration

Dry ice blasting is quickly becoming the industry standard for historical renovation projects. This powerful and efficient restoration method removes paint, mold, smoke stains, soot and years of dirt, scum and carbon build-up from any surface.

Learn how cleaning with CO2 blasting can remove all kinds of grime and remove lead-based paint while bringing out original the beautiful, delicate finishes originally hand-laid into the facades, entryways, walls and ceilings of these beautiful, old historic structures.

The Advantages of Dry Ice Blast Cleaning

In the hands of a skilled blast cleaning technician, this ground breaking blast cleaning method is plenty aggressive, but delicate enough to protect even the most intricate work in masonry, stone, terracotta, clay, marble and limestone.

Unlike abrasive or chemical restoration methods, dry ice blasting does not scratch or stain the surface. Instead, it uncovers the underlying surface and restores historic structures to their original beauty and detail. Ice blast cleaning is easy to control and reaches the tightest cracks and corners without damaging surrounding objects.

Ice blasting is safe for the environment because it does not use dangerous chemicals or leave hazardous fumes behind and is safe for workers since it is non-flammable and non-conductive

Ice blasting technologies have been used with tremendous success on a wide variety of historical restoration projects around the world, such as:

  • Brick, Stone and Masonry Cleaning
  • Fire restoration of brick and Wood
  • Gum, Tar, Paint and Graffiti Removal
  • Log Cabin and Wooden Structure Restoration

These are just a few of the creative applications of this great technology. There is really no end to the applications for this revolutionary cleaning method.

The great Midwestern American cities, like Detroit, MI., Cleveland, OH., Cincinnati, OH., Toledo, OH. and Chicago, IL. are making great comebacks. These cities have seen the worst economic times. They all have great historical buildings and many architects and master builders are working hard to bring these great cities back to life. Many building restoration professionals are searching for a way to restore these old, historic structures to their original beauty and prestige. CO2 blasting is the answer that all these historic restoration specialists are looking for.

Ice blast cleaning works very well on the following structural elements:

  • Brick
  • Fire damaged timber beams and columns
  • Mold infested floor joists and decking
  • Old and dirty hardwood flooring
  • Remove old plaster from walls and ceilings
  • Remove old lead-based paint from walls, beams, columns ceilings and floors

Cleaning with dry ice creates no secondary waste and restores historic structures to their original beauty, and architectural splendor.

Advantages of Using a Standing Fan Equipment

Standing fans have risen immensely in popularity over the last few years because of the ease and convenience that they provide. Unlike ceiling fans, standing fans aren’t supposed to be rooted to one spot, and you can easily move them around according to your wishes. Most of the people who haven’t used these types of fans don’t quite know the advantages that are offered by these fans; otherwise they would most certainly prioritize the purchase of a standing fan over other things.

These fans are extremely easy to handle, and provide users with a very simple moving mechanism. Most of the fans that have the capability to stand on the ground can easily be moved to and fro, which means that you can keep them wherever you like and turn it by simply plugging the switch in the socket. The simplicity of these appliances prove to be a humongous advantage, because unlike ceiling fans (that are just hung on the ceiling and immovable), these standing models can easily be carried around.

For instance, if you are sitting out in your terrace and would like to have a smooth breeze, you can easily carry your standing fan out in your terrace, plug it in and let it cool you down. Furthermore, these fans are set on a rotational axis, which means they can provide cool air to more than one person. The rotor of the appliance is fixed on a sort of a parabola, so whenever you press the switch located on the back of the fan, it would automatically start moving at a certain degree, usually 180.

Standing fans generally don’t complete 360 degrees, because then the parabola has a chance of breaking and the dangers brought about by ball bearings that are located within the fan have restricted manufacturers from experimenting. The standing fan is also known as a pedestal, generally because of the fact that the long rod of the fan, which is also known as the ‘neck’, is connected to a pedestal at the bottom.

The pedestal allows appliance to stand on its own on the ground, and easily allows people to let it stand without any support of any kind. The rotational movement of the equipment makes it extremely easy to cool the atmosphere, and if you turn on the rotation and keep your pedestal fan in a room, you can be sure that a gentle coolness would quickly begin to settle in the atmosphere.

The most important thing to notice here is the fact that these fans are much cheaper as compared to others, especially ceiling fans, and the ease and comfort that they provide is also unparalleled. Furthermore, if used wisely, these fans can go on to have a very long life and provide you with relentless service for a period of several years. A Standing fan can be easily purchased online or you can also purchase it from various different shops in the markets.

MLM Recruiting- Cold Market Prospecting- 5 SCORCHING Opening Phrases

There is a phrase in MLM Recruiting that we call the 5 Magic Words of Cold Market Prospecting. These words can open more doors than you ever thought possible. I used them for years, and they opened thousands of doors. They also help recruit a ton of folks.

What would that phrase be?

“Maybe You Can Help me.”

These words can open doors, create curiosity, and open the hearts of many people to give you a helping hand in your Network Marketing Business.

You may be wondering what do you say after those words. After all, what happens if that phrase gets someone’s attention? What do you do? What do you say?

This brings us to the Golden Law of Cold MLM Market Prospecting:

“Recruiting Starts after the initial Contact…”

What does that mean?

We found that if we didn’t try to recruit them right off the bat, but waited till the second meeting or even third, our ratio for success went up. And it went up tremendously. Many people have a tendency to jump into a conversation with a new prospect, without realizing that it may require some time to develop the relationship, and even give it time to BE THE RIGHT TIME to pursue the conversation full force.


Don’t become an MLM Cold Market “ATTACK RECRUITER.”

Give your cold prospect room to breathe, and let a rapport start to develop a little. If the prospect is cold to the idea, give it some time. Hold more conversations. The desire to help may be there, but give it time to grow and be revealed. A lot of times, it won’t happen immediately, due to the initial lack of any interest on the prospects part, or bad experiences with others.

Wait till the second conversation to bring up your desire to seek them for your business, or who they might know.

This is only professional, and you are giving the relationship time to solidify and then mature into a real possible friendship.


If you jump the gun too quick in MLM Cold Market recruiting, you will end up shooting yourself in the foot.

Here are the “5 HOT Phrases for Cold market MLM Prospecting” These are mainly for people that you will meet in the business community when Net-Working your business, which you should be doing all the time!

The 5 Hot Phrases for MLM Cold Market Prospecting:

1) “I am a professional in the community like you.”

2) “I am introducing myself to .”

3) “I love networking with other professionals.”

4) “Maybe there is a way we could help each other.”

5) “Would you be open to some coffee sometime?”

Let’s take a look at these powerful opening phrases:

1) “I am a professional in the Community.”

This states an important fact: You are one of them.

And this will create the start of a CONNECTION right off the bat, and also establish who you are to the Cold prospect, from one professional to another. Network Marketing is a profession, and you need to start treating it like one, if you are not.

2) “I am introducing myself.”

This sets up an important paradigm. You are taking the initiative to introduce and meet people in the community, and you are a take charge type of person. And it shows you really want to meet folks, as well it shows Leadership.

3) “I love networking with other professionals.”

This states one thing: You value other professionals as a resource. And you also show that you appreciate the fact that networking does work in the business world And also that as a resource, a professional has value to you and your Network Marketing business, and vice versa.

4) “Maybe there is a way we could help each other.”

This establishes that you are willing to Increase and Improve your prospects business and life. And also you do care about helping people, plus you are showing Potential value right upfront.

5) “Would you be open for coffee sometime?”

This is the proactive part of it, and it simply gives them a chance to engage the budding relationship,or not. Most professionals do have an interest in increasing their business, so you will get some interest, and some time with many of them.

But if they say they are not interested?

Be a professional, and thank them for their time and wish them well. And see if you can get a card for a thank you note to send them.

“May I at least have a card in case I run across someone who would want your services?”

Understand that you as a network marketer should be out weekly meeting folks who may need your products and looking for you. But most don’t do that as they stay tied to one or two ways to prospect.

You need Multiple Lead Vehicles in Network Marketing.


Millionaires in this business have multiple lead generating vehicles working for them, all the time, everywhere, with anyone who is looking.

In your Cold market Network Marketing Prospecting, make sure of this:

You put yourself on the other side of the table and think about how would you like to be approached, and treated. Then do it, with these phrases or variations of them. And turn your Cold prospect into a warming up prospect, then eventually a Scorching HOT MLM Prospect.

It worked for me for years, and I was blessed to build huge organizations with these Cold Market Prospecting Phrases for MLM and Network Marketing Recruiting.


(c) 2005/ all rights reserved

PassionFire Intl

Pressure Washer Pump Is Leaking Oil – Why?

Okay so, let’s say that you have a pressure washer in the garage, and you decide you’d like to start a small auto detailing or mobile car wash business. First thing you need to do is make sure that the pressure washer is in working order, as after they have sat for quite a while, there is some preventative maintenance you need to do so that you do not damage it.

Let’s talk about this for a moment shall we? First you must check the oil, and make sure that the pump is filled to the proper levels. You can do this by looking through the eyeglass whole. Before you start the pump, you need to also make sure that the inlet strainer is attached so no debris gets inside. Not long ago, I was reminded of some of the challenges which come about when restarting old equipment. Someone had asked me the following question;

“My CAT pump just basically stopped pumping water. I noticed it was low on oil. I filled it to the required amount last night. When I woke this morning the oil was all over the floor of the garage. Does that mean maybe a blown gasket or seal? If so, can I fix that myself? Where is the best place to buy parts without having to pay $125.00 and ordering them from Italy?”

There are two things which can cause the oil on the floor, one is that you over filled it, that is easy to do, and that may be the problem.

If the oil is foamy, (A) then you have a blown seal inside, if it is leaking from the seam (B) you have a blown seal outside; if it coming out of the filler air hole (C) you put too much in.

If A or B you will need new parts, if (C) then NO. Most of those kits are for the valves, most likely those are fine unless you melted them or ran it out of water too long. They say CAT Pumps have nine-lives, so chances are your pump is still good.

It is entirely possible that there was a temperature change in the garage overnight, and that the pump was over filled with too much oil, as the pressure changed inside the chamber the excess oil was forced through the little hole, which is used for air pressure breathing in the event of wide swings in barometric pressure, or if the pump starts to overheat. In essence this is a safety valve scheme using a little trick widely known in physics. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on.

Eiffel Tower – A Brief History and Overview of Its 120 Year History

The Eiffel Tower today remains one of the most popular attractions of all time in Paris let alone Europe. In fact, since its opening, it is estimated that over a quarter of a billion people have viewed the tower. It has by far been one of the most historic buildings in the world and has landed its name on the 7 Wonders of the World.

The Eiffel Tower was first designed for the Paris Exposition in which many buildings were planned to be built all over Paris. Of the many designs Gustave Eiffel’s design was chosen out of the many. It took nearly 2 years and 2 months of construction but the Eiffel Tower was built in 1899. It was built of mainly or iron. After 20 years of its existence, the Eiffel Tower was being pushed to be demolished for scrap metal for many people.

However, to luck of Paris today it was kept. The main reason for keeping the tower was because it was thought that its radio pole on the top of the building would be helpful and useful for many future scientific endeavors. In fact, many scientific works were conducted on the Eiffel Tower. Temperature, Pressure and Radio Transmission were among the most prominent. During World War II, after the Germans invaded France, they hung the German flag atop the Eiffel Tower as a symbol of France’s subjugation. This was among the most embarrassing moments in French history. The Eiffel Tower since that day has been maintained as a radio tower and site for many tourists around the world. Its golden night display has made the Eiffel Tower at night own of the most beautiful attractions in the world. It and night’s illuminating golden glow has been a source of beauty in the Paris sky for many years. Today, the Eiffel Tower is one of the most visited sites in all of France and Europe and looks to stay that way for years to come.

Lighted Makeup Mirrors – The Difference Between LED, Fluorescent, and Incandescent

A lighted makeup mirror is a must-have for all women who would want to make sure that makeup application is perfectly done. The main purpose of such bathroom accessory is to aid in clear visualization by means of natural light focused on the face. This is especially helpful for nighttime makeup application when brightness is insufficient. Nevertheless, makeup mirrors with light provide adequate illumination for women to carry out normal beautification routines before going out on a date at any time of the day.

While there are so many types and designs of magnifying mirrors, finding the best one may not always be that easy if you do not have any idea about the features to look for. To know more about which type of light will work best for you, it is advised to begin your plight by learning more about the most popular types available for makeup mirrors.

LED (Light Emitting Diodes) light is gaining popularity among manufacturers of appliances. On an average, LED’s have a longer life span compared to other fixtures available in the market, reaching up to 50,000 hours. These are not sensitive to temperature changes and thus, illumination remains unchanged whether or not the air-conditioning is on. It is believed to be ideal for makeup mirrors because of the low heat it emits, making it safe for use even up close.

Fluorescent, on the other hand, have long been utilized in majority of homes and commercial establishments. When it comes to makeup mirrors though, these may not always be recommendable due to some of its downfalls. The neglected fact that fluorescent bulbs contain mercury is enough to steer clear from the toxic effect it can have on human health and the environment. Moreover, electrical failures can result to drastic accidents as these bulbs can easily catch fire, smoke, or omit odor.

As for incandescent lighting on makeup mirrors, these may account for skyrocketing expenditures due to the high demand of electricity wattage required, considering the possibility of frequent usage. In addition, the filament used to manufacture such bulbs is very sensitive and could break easily with slight jarring or bumping. Furthermore, life span is of the lowest usually ending after 1,200 hours of use.

As a conclusion, LED is by far the best choice for lighted magnifying mirrors due to a number of reasons. Aside from practicality and safety, assurance is a given. When lighting is insufficient or unnatural, chances are you consistently apply too much, too little, or messed-up makeup. LED produces more natural lighting leading to looking as good as you can be, especially when outdoors, on presentations, or during performances.

When shopping for a bathroom mirror, keep these helpful pieces of information in mind along with your personal preferences in terms of features to make the task a little bit easier.

Constraints on Participating in Leisure

In “Constraints to Leisure,” Edgar L. Jackson and David Scott provide an overview of the field of leisure constraints research as of the late 1990s. They point out that originally researchers in the field studies what was then called “barriers to recreation participation,” but the word “barriers” refers to what is now considered only one type of constraint – something that intervenes or prevents one from participating in an activity. But now other kinds of constraints are recognized, including one’s interpersonal and intrapersonal influences, which lead one not to take part in leisure. In additional, Jackson and Scott explain that the word “leisure” is used rather than just recreation, since it is a more inclusive term, and the word “participation” was also dropped, since leisure research doesn’t only involve whether a persona participates, but what they prefer to do, where, and what a particular type of leisure means to them.

Jackson and Scott also discuss the three major ways of looking at leisure that have evolved since the leisure constraints approach began in the 19th century. It began with considerations of “barriers to recreation participation and leisure enjoyment” based on the assumption that the main issue to address was service delivery, so that people would participate more if there were more services provided.

Then, starting in the 1960s, the focus shifted to looking at how particular barriers might affect the participation by individuals with different economic and social characteristics. Later, in the 1980s, the notion of constraints emerged, and the researchers realized that these constraints might not only be external, such as in the form of a facility or service, but could be internal, such as a constraint due to psychological and economic factors, or to social or interpersonal factors, such as a person’s relationships with his or her spouse or family.

Since the late 1980s, it would seem that three major concepts about the constraints affecting involvement in leisure activities have emerged, as described in a model proposed by Crawford and Godbey in 1987.

1) The structural or intervening constraint is one which affects someone from participating in some type of leisure, once the person already has indicated a preference for or desire to participate. As conceptualized by Crawford and Godbey, these structural or intervening constraints are “those factors that intervene between leisure preference and participation.” (p. 307). Research based on this conception of a constraint generally involves doing a survey to identify the particular items standing in the way of participation, such as time, costs, facilities, knowledge of the service or facility, lack of a partner for participation (such as a partner to participate in a doubles tennis match), and a lack of skills or a disability. The assumption underlying this approach is that a person would participate in any activity if not for these constraints, which seem much like the barriers conceived of when that term was in use. In looking for patterns and commonalities, using various quantitative methods such as factor analysis and cluster analysis, researchers found support for certain common structural and intervening constraints, most notably: “time commitments, costs, facilities and opportunities, skills and abilities, and transportation and access.” Additionally, the researchers sought to look at how different groups in society were constrained in different ways, such as women, or groups based on age and income, eventually leading researchers to recognize that most constraints are experienced to a greater or lesser degree depending on personal and situational factors.

2) An intrapersonal constraint is a psychological state or characteristic which affects leisure preferences, rather than acting as a barrier to participation once a person has already developed those preferences. For example, intrapersonal constraints which might lead a person not to develop particular leisure preferences might be that person’s “abilities, personality needs, prior socialization, and perceived reference group attitudes.”

3) An interpersonal constraint is one which occurs due to one’s interaction with one’s peers, family members, and others, leading one to think of certain leisure activities, places, or services as relevant or not relevant leisure activities to participate in. For instance, based on one’s understandings from interacting with others one might consider certain types of leisure to be inappropriate, uninteresting, or unavailable.

Although a hierarchical model was proposed by D.W. Crawford, E. L. Jackson, an G. Godbey to combine these three concepts into a single model, based on one first forming leisure preferences on the intrapersonal level, then encountering constraints on the interpersonal level, and finally encountering structural or intervening constraints, it would seem there is no such sequential ordering of these constraints. Rather they seem to act together in varying ways and orders, though Henderson and other researchers have sought to combine intrapersonal and interpersonal constraints together to become antecedent constraints.

Whether such antecedents constraints exist or not, another way to look at whether people participate in a leisure experience based on the way they respond to a perceived constraint. If they participate and want to participate, that would be described as a “successful proactive response.” If they don’t participate though they would like to do so, that would be considered a “reactive response.” Finally, if they participate but in a different way, that would be called a “partly successful proactive response.”

A good illustration of this response to a constraint approach might be a mountain climber who suffers a disability. The climber who gets a prosthetic and climbs the mountain himself might be considered to be showing a “successful proactive response.” The climber who decides to abandon the sport might be considered to be showing a “reactive response.” Finally the climber who is helped to climb the mountain by a team of other climbers might be considered to be engaging in a “partly successful proactive response.”

These ideas about constraints might be applied to how individuals get involved with some of the activities I have organized through several Meetup groups I run. These include an occasional Video Potluck Night, where people come to my house to see videos which I get at Blockbuster; feedback/discussion groups for indie film producers and directors, which might be considered a form of leisure, since most attendees are producing and directing films during their leisure time, often for free, and they have other paying jobs; and several teleseminars on writing, publishing, and promoting books, which is also more of a hobby for participants, since they hope to get books published, but have other jobs.

Structurally, some individuals who might attend these Meetup groups may be constrained because of the common structural problems that have been identified, including time commitments, costs, facilities and opportunities, skills and abilities, and transportation and access. Some people can’t attend any of these activities, because they have another event to go to at that time or they may have extra work to do, so they can’t spare the time to attend. Though there is no cost for the meetings, some people may be constrained by the cost of getting to my house, including the gas and toll from San Francisco, Marin, or the Peninsula, and the cost of contributing something to the potluck (which many people have to buy because they don’t have the time to make something).

Another constraint is that some people may be uncomfortable about going to an event in a private house. Some may not attend the discussion groups or teleseminars, because they feel their skills are not yet up to par, although they hope someday to become a produce and director or finish their book. Some may not attend because they have problems with access, since they have trouble getting to my house if they don’t have a car, because they have problems getting there by bus or BART (which are 1-3 miles from my house respectively), and they can’t get a ride. And if someone has a serious disability, they will have trouble getting into my house, which is not wheelchair accessible.

The intrapersonal constraint may come into play when some people decide not to come because they feel uncomfortable in large groups or meeting new people, such as to the Video Potlucks, since these not only involve socializing before the film over dinner but then sharing during introductions and in a discussion of the film after the showing. Others may not come because they fear opening up and showing the work they have done since they fear criticism.

The interpersonal constraint may occur when some people decide not to come because their friends or family may be doing something else or their peers may put down going to the activity. For example, their peers may be interesting in attending and discussing first run films in theaters, whereas my video potluck nights feature films on DVD from Blockbuster that come out about three months later than a theatrical release. Or their peers may discourage them from attending a director or producer discussion group, since they will be discussing their work with others who are similarly trying to break into the industry or producing and directing small films as a hobby. Their peers may claim they should only go to programs where they will meet people who are already established in the industry or convince them they don’t need any more feedback, since their project is already very good.

In short, these three concepts can be readily applied to understanding participation in the leisure activities I organize.

Expert Embroidery Digitizer Advice on 3D Designs and Foam

3D foam or 3D puff embroidery has become quite the rage in embroidery circles – and not without reason. After all, it practically does make your design “stand out”. 3D puff embroidery not only lends a luxurious touch and rich texture to your embroidered piece, but also makes it pop out and grab attention.

What is 3D embroidery?

As the name suggests, 3D embroidery actually adds another dimension to any 2D design by raising it and making it puffier. There happen to be two ways of achieving a three dimensional result on embroidery. The first is layered 3D embroidery, and the second is puff 3D embroidery. In case of layered 3D embroidery, the stitch count of the design is simply doubled up to make the design thicker and get that raised look. However, in case of puff 3D embroidery, a piece of foam is placed under the stitches to get a striking three dimensional effect.

More and more businesses are opting to put puff 3D embroidery on their uniforms and branded giveaways, since it really makes the logo pop out from the garment’s surface and adds a cool, exciting dimension to the product, such as caps, bags and jackets.

The Design Story

Before you go ahead and ask your embroidery digitizer to puff up your design, here’s a few details that you should have worked out in advance:

  • 3D foam or puff embroidery works best on block letters or numbers.
  • Such letters or numbers should have rounded corners, so that the needle can perforate the corners and cover up the foam completely – leading to crisp results.
  • Get ready for an increase in size, as the foam causes shapes to expand. So, if ample spacing is not provided between elements, the letters will end up crammed. We advise a minimum 3mm gap between elements.
  • Avoid lots of details. Crests and scripted text are a big no-no. Each letter, number or element of your design should be at least 3mm in width for clean results.
  • If it can’t be done in satin stitch, don’t opt for foam embroidery. We don’t advise giving up the idea of getting 3D embroidery altogether; however, if your design cannot be digitized in satin, we’d propose looking into layered 3D embroidery or other options.

Foam Mantras

While the job of an embroidery digitizer usually ends with handing over the digitized files, we’d like to go ahead and help you with one other crucial element on your 3D puff journey to success – the foam! Foam happens to be one of the simplest, yet most frustrating elements for most people looking to get their 3D embroidered garment. Here are a few mantras that will definitely make life that much easier during production:

  • The type and quality of foam being used is extremely important. Therefore, we recommend asking your accessory supplier as to which foam will be the best bet for your design and garment, since all foams are not created equal.
  • While foam is available in varying thicknesses of 2, 3 and 6mm. 3mm is the standard advised by any embroidery digitizer, as it is easy to work with and also delivers the right elevation.
  • Choosing the right foam color is also essential. Always match your foam color to the top thread, so that any excesses are less visible.
  • It’s highly recommended to use a heat gun to nip off any excess foam sticking out.
  • For those who’re customer-centric, looking into non-toxic and water-resistant varieties is definitely worth the while.

5 Decorating Benefits Of A Round Area Rug

A round area rug is a versatile and attractive floor covering in the widest choice of colours, designs and material compositions you can possibly imagine! An area rug is versatile. They can create wonderful focal points with splashes of colour to be the unifying element in tying the design of a room together.

Rugs can create cosy conversation areas and by their very nature of being round, they create a defined space to gather for intimate conversations. In a jiffy, they quickly and easily be laid down to give your house a burst of colour and character.

A round area rug provides comfort, cushioning and warmth over floors with a hard surface finish such as tile, stone, laminate or hardwood floors. A beautiful rug can also be considered a piece of “artwork” for the floor, providing artistic merit and value to the design of the room. And, last but not least, they can feel wonderfully textural, comfortingly soft and plush beneath your bare feet…

5 Decorating Benefits Of Round Area Rugs

1) They can creatively offset the rectangular and linear nature of doorways, walls, floors and furniture.

2) A round area rug can successfully create and draw together a high-end designer appearance within a room. The circular shape may draw on and echo other elements of circular shapes in the existing room such as the architecture, lighting fixtures, furniture shapes and room accessories without looking artificial or overdone.

3) A round rug is the perfect solution to visually opening up a small room, making small rooms feel larger. They are especially good for apartment living. The circular nature naturally softens the hard edges of furniture, creating attractive and defined pools of space.

4) If you are looking to create a rich feeling of luxury and character with textural emphasis warmth and depth, choosing the perfect rug laid over beautiful wooden floorboards, textural floor tiles or laid over wall to wall carpeting will create a unique look.

5) Create an intimate conversation area by drawing attention to a particular area of the room, enhancing the focus point and cosiness of that area by using a beautiful round area rug in creating an inviting space…

A Few More Thoughts On Using A Round Area Rug…

As you can see, a round area rug opens up numerous possibilities for experimenting with decorating the look of your space. The unique nature of their shape creates a sense of symmetry and balance in unifying your surroundings. And of course many people ask “how do I know what rug to choose?”

Here are a few pointers to helping you choose the perfect round area rug for your space.

If you want to create a focal point in a room, choose a rug with a central medallion or design feature. If there is already an obvious central focal point such as a fireplace, it’s best to use a rug with a more repetitive, not so obvious pattern.

If you already have upholstery with a busy pattern in your furniture, or ornate wallwaper, it’s best to choose a more subtle rug pattern so they don’t compete.

On the other hand, if your upholstery and walls are relatively plain and subdued, you have the perfect opportunity to try a colourful rug with a dramatic design and pattern to create interest in a focal point in the room.

Bold patterns such as abstract designs, lots of colours, large flowers on a small rug serve to make a room look larger.

If you are coordinating your new rug with items you already own, remedies takes swatches of upholstery fabric, wallpaper and paint chips when you go shopping as it’s very difficult to try and visualise what your room looks like… Often shopowners are quite happy for you to take the rug home to try it out.

Final Thoughts On Choosing A Round Area Rug…

I wish you all the best in choosing the right round area rug for they can be a wonderful addition to the home, bringing many years of pleasure and usefulness. Take your time in deciding on the size, color, textural emphasis and also the materials from which the rug is made. Does the rug need to be easy to care for, is it in a high traffic area, are allergies an issue… ? These are just a few pointers to take into account in your mission. Choose wisely and you will be well rewarded.

How to Properly Acclimate Your New Oak Flooring Prior to Installation

Being a natural material, oak flooring is bound to expand and contract with changes in weather and temperature. When flooring expands or contracts too much, the boards can warp, bend, and buckle. One way of preventing such damage is to properly acclimate your oak flooring before you install it.

You may be wondering, What is acclimation? How can I make sure my floors are acclimated? Good questions. The following is basic information on what acclimation is, why it is so important, and how to properly acclimate your flooring.

What is flooring acclimation?

Acclimation is an important step in the flooring installation process during which the moisture content of the wood is adjusted to match the normal living conditions of the home. If the wood’s moisture content is too high or too low, there is increased chance of the wood expanding and contracting in damaging ways.

What steps do I take in the acclimation process?

Acclimating oak flooring isn’t just a set-it-and-forget-it project. There are a number of steps involved, each of equal importance.

Unless you have a lot of experience with flooring installation it is best to leave the entire process up to a professional. That said, it is still a good idea to know proper acclimation techniques, in case the professional you hired is doing it incorrectly.

1. Check Board and Sub-Floor Moisture

The moisture content of both your new oak flooring and the sub-floors over which it will be installed need to be within an acceptable range of each other. What that range is depends on the size of the boards. For boards less than three inches wide, the moisture content differential between the floor and flooring needs to be less than four percent. For boards wider than three inches, the difference should be less than two percent. Wide plank boards – flooring wider than four inches – require even more care and caution when acclimating. Check with a flooring professional if you’re using wide plank.

2, Rack It

For the best results, you will want to remove the oak flooring from its box and rack it in the room in which it will be installed. This acclimation technique allows the wood to adjust to the room’s natural humidity, making the process more successful.

3. Keep It Warm

Keeping the wood warm is an important part of the acclimation process. A heated, controlled environment will lead to much better-acclimated and more stable floor.

4. Wait

This is probably the hardest part of the acclimation process. Most people want to install their new oak flooring as soon as possible, but the wood must be acclimated for at least seven to 14 days. The moisture content will determine how long the acclimation process will take, but most species don’t take less than a week.

Remember to consult a professional if you have any hardwood flooring acclimation questions. If the professional handling the installation of your new oak flooring doesn’t follow the aforementioned steps for acclimation, look for a new company. It’s better to take the time to properly acclimate your floor than spends hundreds or thousands of dollars repairing and replacing it down the road.