Turning Pens – Tips For Creating A Durable High Gloss Finish


One of the more enduring quests by woodturners, is the pursuit of a perfect pen finish. A perfect finish would offer exceptional durability and visual clarity, with a deep, rich “wet” look. Although this is a tall order for any pen finish to deliver, careful selection of the pen blank material, coupled with advanced finishing protocols, can deliver a near perfect pen finish. Plastic and stabilized wooden blanks offer an excellent option for pen turners seeking to create durable high gloss finishes for their hand turned writing pens.

Basic Challenges

One of the most challenging aspects of creating a durable and glossy pen finish, is the typical environment pens are subjected to in use. Moving in and out of pockets, purses and desk drawers, coupled with the natural oils and sweat from our hands, makes it tough for many finishes to retain their glossy finish. In addition, some hardwoods are considerably less dense than others, allowing the barrels on softer hardwoods to be easily damaged.

Denser native woods and most exotics are a better choice in many cases for a highly durable pen barrel. However, softer hardwoods can be used with equal success if the blank has been stabilized with thin acrylics, or penetrating epoxies prior to turning on the lathe. These “stabilized” pen blanks are a superb choice for wooden writing pens. Stabilized pen blanks offer greater hardness and durability of the barrel surface vs. using natural timbers.

Alternative Material Pen Blanks

Alternative materials like plastics, acrylics, stabilized exotic and native woods, horn, antler, fossilised Ivory, cast acrylics and similar materials, can easily produce a glossy lustre when used for pen barrels. Some materials, both natural and man made can be polished to a higher lustre than others. For example, plastics can be easily polished to 12000-grit, producing a visually stunning, deep wet look in the barrel surface.

However, natural timbers do not produce the same degree of lustre as plastics, even when sanded to the same abrasive level. Stabilized pen blanks typically produce a higher lustre than the same timber without stabilization. This is because the acrylics and epoxies used in the stabilization process, allow the barrels to be polished to a higher level than untreated wood blanks.

Advanced Abrasive and Finishing Protocols

In addition to the careful selection of the barrel material, the application of advanced abrasive and finishing protocols can go a long way toward providing durable and glossy pen finishes. Proper surface preparation, including sanding and polishing of the barrel surface prior to applying the desired finish, will allow the finish to magnify the underlying perfected surface. This will produce a much higher perceived gloss level on the barrel surface.

High performance cloth backed abrasives are available that will produce a 12000-grit surface. At this ultra high level, the human eye cannot see the surface scratch pattern, resulting in an exceptionally high gloss level on the surface. Careful selection of the barrel finish can also affect the overall lustre and longevity of the finish.

Types of Finishes for Stabilized Pen Blanks

Waxes are among the easiest of all finishes to apply, but may not last long in normal use on a writing pen. Shellac friction polishes offer better overall durability than waxes and are also easy to apply. Lacquers offer still greater durability, but require multiple coats and extended drying times between coats. Cyanoacrylate Esters (CA or Super Glue) and binary Epoxies offer extreme durability, but require advanced application protocols. For this reason and others plastics are gaining in popularity, especially when an ultra-high gloss lustre is desired.

Basic Protocol for Finishing Plastic and Celluloid Pen Blanks

If possible, use sterate coated abrasives, or wet-dry abrasives to prevent loading of the abrasive surface when sanding. To obtain the highest lustre and clarity of the plastic barrel surface, you have two options:

  • Sand with traditional, or wet-dry abrasives to 1200-grit. Then, buff the barrel surface with a plastic polishing compound on the lathe. A cloth buffing wheel loaded with a fine plastic polishing compound can also be used to raise the lustre to the desired level.
  • Sand with standard micro mesh abrasives, which can be used either wet or dry and are available in nine grits from 1500 to 12000-grit. The visual surface when polished to 12000-grit is nothing short of spectacular, making the plastic look so glossy that it appears liquid.

One additional advantage of using plastics for your pen barrels is that the plastic surface can be polished to a high luster, without the need for any surface finish. Since there is no surface finish on the pen barrel, nothing can wear off with time as you would find with a traditionally finished wooden pen.

A high quality conservation grade Microcrystalline wax should be applied to provide extra protection for the glossy barrel surface. Microwaxes offer excellent resistance to moisture, acids, alcohols and moderate heat and will not show fingerprints on the high gloss surface.

Basic Protocol for Finishing Stabilized Wood Blanks

If you prefer to use wood for your pen barrels, choose a stabilized pen blank if possible, for the greatest durability and luster on the surface. To produce a high gloss finish on a stabilized pen blank, follow these easy steps:

  • Sand the barrels to 600-grit metric and remove any dust. Apply a lacquer sanding sealer (cut 50/50 with lacquer thinner) to the surface and wipe off any excess with a soft paper towel. Turn on the lathe, set to high revs and friction dry on the lathe with a soft paper towel. Apply a small amount of Tripoli cutting wax (wax that contains an ultra-fine abrasive) on a piece of paper towel and apply to the barrel surface, whilst spinning on the lathe at high revs. Move slowly back and forth to allow the compound to polish the barrel surface.
  • Reapply the cutting wax until the desired gloss level is achieved. Remove any excess with a soft paper towel and buff to a brilliant shine.
  • Apply your desired finish next. (Listed in order of overall durability) Microcrystalline Wax, Friction Shellac, Lacquer, Cyanoacrylate Ester and binary Epoxies can be used for the top level finish. Depending on the specific finish used, a final application of the cutting wax may be required to raise the luster to the desired level.
  • Apply a conservation grade Microcrystalline wax to the surface with the lathe off and lightly wipe off the excess. Buff to a gloss with revs set to high, using a soft clean paper towel.

If you invest just a little more time sanding and polishing your pen barrels using the above protocols, you will be rewarded with a durable, high gloss finish for your hand turned writing pens.

Three Old School Fitness Exercises That Will Work Your Whole Body

More and more people are recognizing that certain types of fitness routines are more effective for getting your whole body in shape than the typical static training we have seen for awhile.

If you remember the movie Rocky IV when Rocky trained for his fight against the Russian powerhouse, Rocky’s training regime was crude compared to the Russian. You would watch Rocky train in the snow carrying a log or running up a mountain while the Russian trained in a state of the art gym. Rocky would chop wood or hang from a rafter doing abdominal training. So what happened? Rocky beat the Russian because of his old school training.

You can do many old school type of training in your own life. In an earlier article I talked about sandbag training and some others. In this article I’m going to bring in chopping wood/sledge hammer training and a couple of other types of training that you can use.

Chopping wood and using the sledge hammer are both similar. They will give you a great core workout as well as your shoulders, back, arms and legs. In this workout use a sledgehammer. You can get one at any hardware store and also find an old tire. If you’ve never swung a sledgehammer or chopped wood, go slow. You can get sledgehammers in different weight sizes. Start out with a lighter weight until you get used to swinging.

The goal is to strike the tire with the sledgehammer. The starting position is important. Depending on whether you are right-handed or left-handed the hold will be different. It is the same way when you hold a baseball bat you will hold the bat different in your right hand versus your left hand because of the side you’re hitting from. Now when you grip the handle of the sledgehammer you will start with one hand near the bottom and the other closer to the head. When you start your swing, lift up the sledgehammer over your shoulder (right or left handed) with the head just behind your shoulder. The grip is still in the same position at this time.

As you swing down the hand closest to the head will slide down to the other hand during the descent. Both hands will be near each other right before the strike is made. That will be the first rep. Repeat this for more repetitions. You can speed up when you become more proficient in the swing and strike.

The next exercise that is great for your whole body is the log carry. This exercise will work out your legs as the primary area. Your shoulders, arms, back, chest, and abdominals will be worked out as the secondary areas. This is pretty simple to do. Find an old log so you can carry on your shoulders. From this you would do lunge walks, runs, and regular walks. The lunge walks will tax your legs and hips as will the runs. You can even move from one exercise to another to keep it challenging. The goal is to get your heart rate up.

If you can’t find a log, then you can substitute it with a duffle bag filled with sand and a rod (for stiffness). In addition to the lunges, walks, and runs – you can do squats too.

The final exercise requires that you have a car tire. I would recommend that you have several different sizes for this. In fact, if you can get a large tractor tire, that would be great. Let’s start with the smaller tires. These will be used for tossing exercises. It will require a total body, dynamic type of workout. That’s one of the reasons I want you to start with the smallest tire you can find for this. There are two basic tosses that you will be doing. The first one will be the flip over your head. The way you do it is to grasp the tire with both hands and with a swinging motion, toss it over your head behind you.

You will use your legs to help in the swinging motion and to develop the power for the toss. You may want to practice without the tire at first. Focus on the technique and then move to the tire. Heck, even a bicycle tire will help with this.

The next toss is like a discus throw. You will be using both hands for this one (unless you are strong enough to use one hand). Grasp the tire with both hands on top, around the inner edge. Start swinging from side to side until you gain some momentum. As the momentum increases, spin your body in a circle (again like a discus thrower would) and let go of the tire – tossing it into the air. This will work your whole body and especially your abdominal area.

If you are able to get a tractor tire, use it for lifting & flipping it forward. It will be heavy, make sure you use a good dead lift like form to lift it. As you lift it, get it to where you can push it forward where it will be flipped over and then continue for several times.

Have fun and experiment. Like the ancient warriors, you will build your body for functionality. Keep training for health too.

Use Asphalt Shingle Roof Coating to Stop Roof Leaks

The most difficult part of repairing a roof leak is finding the source of the leak; where and how is the water making its way inside! There are a couple of techniques to help you find the source of the leak: one is nature – find the location on a rainy day or use a hose to simulate the rain! But know where the weak spots are will save you time in locating the leak.

The most common cause of roof leaks are transitional roof areas: chimney, skylights, vents, valleys and dormer areas. Quite often the flashing is not installed correctly. Flashing is sheet metal installed at any transition point on an asphalt shingled roof to prevent leaks. If the flashing is not installed correctly the asphalt shingle roof is vulnerable to leaking.

Another factor in roof leaks with asphalt shingles is the pitch of the roof. Gravity is what keeps the water rolling off the roof. If a roof has a low slope there is more potential for the slow moving water to be blown under the asphalt shingles. And there is always the potential of melting snow on a roof to pool at an ice dam area and be pushed under the asphalt shingles.

Repairing Asphalt Shingle Roof Leaks

Once you identify the source of the leak, repairing a roof leak can really be quite simple. If your roof leak is due to a low slope, you may want to consider applying a clear shingle roof coating. If you find a hole in the flashing then, you can take a piece of metal flashing and, slide it over a hole and up and under the shingle above. It should fit OK without using an adhesive. But you may want to consider a clear elastomeric coating to be sure the surrounding area is sealed.

However, it may be easier and more effective to apply an elastomeric asphalt shingle coating over the area that has a problem with the flashing. If you apply a roof coating you can extend the coverage area and seal a larger area at one time. As a preventative measure, you can apply the elastomeric coating to all the transition areas on the asphalt shingle roof and lower the risk of future leaks.

There are several roof coatings that can be applied to stop a roof leak. Roof coatings come in black, clear or basic colors. I prefer using a clear asphalt shingle roof coating, thus eliminating unsightly black patches or mis-matched colors.

When selecting a roof coating, be sure to know how it is applied. Some coatings are applied with a trowel and others with a brush, applying with a brush will make the job easier. Another factor with applying a roof coating is the temperature, some roof coatings can not be applied in cold weather! So check temperature restrictions also.

If you have problems with ice dams you may want to use a clear asphalt shingle roof coating around the roof edges where ice dams occur. This will prevent melting snow & ice from being pushed or pooling on the roof shingles. It is much easier to prevent a leak from an ice dam than it is to fix a leak once an ice dam forms.

To learn more about asphalt shingle roof coating or other roof coatings, visit: http://www.elastomericroofcoatings.com

The Durability of Wedding Ring Materials

There are various different materials used for wedding rings, this article examines each material and its wearability rate.

1. Silver – A relatively inexpensive semi-precious white metal, reasonably soft and ductile and popular with men both as a fashion item and less so as a wedding ring. It does not resist scratching well and has a tendency to wear thin in time.

Another feature of silver is its reactivity with the acid in human sweat which tends to turn it black, although this tarnishing effect is easily removed.

2. Gold. 9 carat gold – fast becoming out of vogue with consumers in the UK in favour of 18 carat gold due to its low content of pure gold (37.5%). The low gold content also accounts for its paler yellow colour and in the case of 9 carat white gold, its whiter colour is due to the addition of silver.

As with silver, 9 carat gold is prone to tarnishing but is arguably harder and more durable than 18 carat gold. Even so, it will not resist scratching well and, like silver, 9 carat and 18 carat gold will wear thin in time.

22 carat gold is also an alternative for wedding rings and is heavily favoured by Indian and Asian cultures.

3. Titanium. A recent newcomer to the wedding ring market, especially to the UK, Titanium is fast becoming the material of choice for the male market. Contemporary, modern designs coupled with strength and durability make rings from this metal the choice for discerning jewellery buyers.

Often mistaken as an indestructable metal, Titanium is in fact quite soft but extremely tough. It will take on small rub marks quite quickly but will resist deformation due to abuse or accidents and will not wear thin like precious metals. As with the majority of metals, with perhaps the exception of Tungsten, Titanium rings, if polished, will dull down, if satin, will brighten up and in time both finishes will meet somewhere in the middle.

4. Stainless Steel – Not as popular a metal worn as a wedding ring but still gaining recognition. About twice the weight of Titanium, and a highly durable material also. High resistance to deformation and wearing thin over long periods of time but, as with all metals will show signs of scratching.

5. Zirconium. Also a newcomer. As the sister metal to Titanium, Zirconium has all the same qualities – hypoallergenic, lightweight, strong, but with the added advantage that, when heat treated, forms a silky black, ceramic like, sapphire hardness oxide coating, Although extremely resistant to scratches, because of the soft material under the coating, dents will appear on the ring. The coating will resist chipping but you should be aware that scratches will eventually appear on the ring in time.

6. Tungsten. Yet another newcomer. Very hard, scratch resistant and durable and should retain its appearance for many years. The major disadvantages being that resizing is only possible by making the ring larger by remachining the bore using very specialist equipment and in the event that the ring has to be removed in an emergency, breaking the ring off is the only option and so destroying the ring.

7. Palladium. Not a newcomer but originally popular just after the 2nd World War. Palladium is in the same group of elements as platinum with practically the same look and whiteness but at a fraction of the cost. Durability wise – about the same as Titanium. The main disadvantage at the moment is the shortage of manufacturers producing rings from this material.

8. Platinum. The wedding ring equivalent of Royalty. Extremely expensive at the moment of writing but has gained a lot of popularity of late. Probably the whitest of all the wedding ring materials with the durability, once again, of Titanium.

Safety Regulations For Workers Working With Overhead Cranes

Overhead cranes have become vital in modern industry. They are common sight in sectors like construction, steel, mining, shipyards, and others. Overhead Cranes are useful in many industrial activities and are commonly used to move extremely heavy items from one place to another. The rapid industrialization in many parts of the world has made the use of overhead cranes a crucial component of every major industry. Operating overhead cranes requires skill and proper knowledge of safety procedures. For the proper utilization of overhead cranes, it is essential that workers and crane operators are fully trained and are completely skilled in the job. It is always to be remembered that unskilled or untrained operators not only put their lives at peril, but also cause the lives of other to be at risk.

For this reason, certain safety regulations for workers have been laid down by OSHA and US law for operating overhead cranes. Crane operators are responsible for their actions and for therefore, they must obey various rules and regulations that are in force. All employers must realize that there are different types of cranes and each crane has a different set of training and maintenance requirements. For proper operation of the crane, it is essential that the crane owner as well as the operator is familiar with its operating instructions. Amongst the foremost safety regulations for crane operators, it is essential that they possess corrected eyesight as mandated for a driver’s license. It is also essential that crane operators are able to effectively use both their hands and feet and are sufficiently tall to operate the controls of the overhead crane. Additionally, operators are expected to have proper coordination between their eyes, hands, and feet and should be free from disorders that could cause convulsion or unconsciousness.

Furthermore, as required by the new rules passed in July 2010, the US safety and health administration body OSHA has come up with new safety regulations for crane operators. Amongst the more important safety regulations are that cranes operators are required to be certified by an accredited body such as the National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO). This is to ensure that crane operators are familiar with the hazards that come along with their daily routine. This will also help them to prevent accidents. Amongst the other notable safety measures require that the equipment be safely assembled. They should not collapse during or after installation and should be assembled under the guidelines of a qualified individual. Regular inspection of the crane equipment is mandatory every year. The crane should also be visually inspected after installation and also before the commencement of each shift.

Furthermore, audible warning signs are required for cranes when they are in motion. Every worker who is working onsite requires to be trained in crane warning signals so that they are aware of every potentially dangerous situation. No one should exceed the load capacity of the crane. The point is clear – loads that exceed the weight limit should not be moved at all. At the same time, if an operator cannot rig the load properly due to technical or other reasons, it should not be lifted. The crane operator should also inspect the path of the crane and check for any obstacles or people crossing the path. This should be done before the crane is operated. Additionally, the controls on the crane should be clearly marked and the operator should be very familiar with the use of these controls.

Workers should know how to evacuate the area in case of an emergency. Additionally, they should be familiar with how to handle an unexpected even such as an electrical or a mechanical failure. They should also be familiar with crane operation signs and should know how to handle the crane in event of a power failure. Additionally, workers should not wear loose clothing and also should secure their hair and jewelry. They should also park the crane safely when not in operation and lower the loads when the crane is not in use. Also, never ride on the hoist or pulley of a crane. This can be dangerous to life as just a slip could cause the worker to fall and can lead to disastrous consequences. Regulations also stipulate that workers should be familiar with using lockout procedures to avoid accidental starting or movements.

Broadly, it is essential that workers should understand signs, labels, as well a various instructions. In conclusion, the worker needs to be trained and tested before operating an overhead crane. There are other operator requirements including demonstrating proficiency in operating the crane. Once all the requirements are met, the worker is issued with a permit, and it is mandatory for workers that this permit is carried on their person and is made available upon request.

Women’s Trench Coat – The Latest Women’s Trench Coat Trends

Are you looking for a trench coat that will keep you cozy and fashionable this season? In these delightful months of snow, fireplaces and carols, where do you find a coat that will make you shine as brightly as the North Star? I love coats. Though some women shirk coats because it adds bulk to their frame, I think that a good coat adds a bit of mystery to a woman, a “pow” factor.

A beautiful woman in good trench exudes a certain easy independence, with the right touch of arrogance. She makes you wonder: who is she? What secrets are hiding in those coat pockets? Want to find the right coat that won’t make you look like a bulky Christmas tree or a fashion disaster from last season’s closet? The following are the latest trench coat trends out on the runway this season.

o Bright Young Things

When it comes to color, the trend today is all about bright and happy. Even designers like Rei Kawakubo, who likes to keep to his blacks and neutrals, have added pops of red in his coat designs.

Friendly tip: To avoid looking like a lollipop, match your brights with contrasting colors such black, gray and other solid neutrals.

o Length

For me, a good trench doesn’t go any shorter than knee-length. Trenches are supposed to wrap around you like a blanket and totally defeats the purpose if it doesn’t fully cover.

o Shape

Trenches ala Sherlock Holmes are not the only shapes available. In fact, a lot of women’s trench coats this season have a little flare in them to define the waist. So, find one that best suits your figure.

Uric Acid Symptoms – 5 Simple Tips to Ditch Your Uric Acid Symptoms of Gout

Your uric acid symptoms of gout – inflammation, swelling, redness, heat and agonising pain – are caused by uric acid crystals in your joints, tendons and surrounding tissues. The most common joints are the big toe, ankle and knee, but, almost any joint can be affected. Here, you’ll discover how to ditch your uric acid symptoms by using 5 simple tips.

Uric acid is produced when ‘purines’ breakdown in our bodies after carrying out the vital work of converting our food to energy and genes to proteins. Purines are chemical compounds that appear naturally in our body cells and in much of our foods. So any remedy for gout has to take your diet into consideration.

Here are 5 simple ways to reduce your uric acid symptoms of gout, starting with your diet:-

1. You must avoid foods with high levels of purines. These are foods such as, red meats, offal, game, gravy, broth, poultry, shellfish, fish roe, sardines, mackerel, legumes, lentils, yeast extracts, etc. Also alcohol. Avoid alcohol, especially beer!

2. Eating 5 portions of fresh vegetables and fruit every day helps to flush uric acid out of your system. But avoid cauliflower, asparagus and mushrooms because they are relatively high in purines.

3. It is very important to flush excess acid out of your system by drinking at least 2 litres of water every day.

4. Eat plenty of cherries: a cupful at each meal. They have antioxident and anti-inflammatory powers and are known as a very effective natural remedy for gout.

5. Take Alfalfa to reduce acid levels. It also acts as an anti-inflammatory agent. You can take it in seed form, capsules or liquid extracts.

These are just some of the many natural treatments for relieving uric acid symptoms of gout.

But what you need to consider now is how to prevent your gout returning again and again. If all you do is get rid of the symptoms each time you suffer an attack, without doing anything to prevent further gout attacks, you run the risk of possible permanent joint damage due to these recurring bouts of gout. Ideally, you need to relieve the pain of gout symptoms now, and, prevent your gout returning in the future.

Breach of Contract: Legal Remedies That Can Be Pursued

Business contracts are a key element for the business world. They make sure that individuals and corporations keep their promises and fulfill their obligations. In essence, contracts are an idea backed by confidence and that confidence is supported by the legal system. It, however, is important to remember that no matter whether a contract is written or oral, it can be legally enforced.

When individuals or businesses fail to perform any particular term of a contract without a legitimate excuse, it is called a breach of contract. There are many ways that someone can breach a contract. It can include failure to complete a job, starting a job too late, failure to deliver goods as promised, not paying on time, not paying in full, or any move on their part which shows that they will not complete their work as promised (termed an anticipatory breach).

A breach of contract can occur one time or it can be a series of continued breaches; should this occur, the injured party can file a civil lawsuit. The remedies for contractual breaches are not designed to punish the breaching party, however, they are meant to place the injured party into the same position they would be in if it weren’t for the breach.

When a contract is broken, the non-breaching party is relieved of his obligations under the contract, because of the other party’s breach. When this happens, the courts very well may award damages as a result of the breach. In cases where monetary damages are inadequate to compensate the injured party, a court may award “specific performance,” which forces the breaching party to fulfill their end of the agreement (contract).

As discussed above, there are two general categories of relief for breach of contract: damages and performance. Damages refer to monetary compensation, whereas performance involves forcing the breaching party to do what they originally promised to do in the contract. A business litigation attorney who specializes in contract law can help you determine which method is best to settle your particular contract dispute.

Before you file a breach of contract lawsuit, you should learn more about the different types of remedies available to you. Some people simply desire monetary compensation in order to make up for the grief the other side caused them whereas others want them to carry out their side of the agreement.

Monetary damages can include compensatory damages (compensation for your losses), consequential and incidental damages (foreseeable damages), attorney fees (can only be recovered if included in the contract), liquidated damages (must be specified in the contract if there is a fraud), and punitive damages.

Of course, the relative laws in force and the particular conduct of the breaching party will determine which kind of damages are awarded and how much. The more unconscionable the conduct, coupled with intentional behavior, the greater the chances you will be awarded larger punitive damages on behalf of the breach. In cases where the breach arose out of gross negligent behavior, compensatory and consequential damages are more likely to be received.

When money cannot make up the damage, sometimes the other side will be ordered to perform their duties. This remedy is more common with real estate transactions, since the courts prefer not to get involved with monitoring because it takes up too much time and expense.

Other remedies include rescission where the contract is canceled and both parties are excused from further performance and any deposits are returned. Another option is reformation where the terms of the contract are altered in order to accommodate what both parties originally intended.

Before you file a lawsuit, you should discuss your case with a business litigation lawyer who can review the contract for you. There may be limitations or notice requirements contained within your contract that may have waived your ability to pursue contractual remedies. An attorney will also give you a clear understanding of how much full litigation would cost. There may be alternative dispute resolutions available to you that can save money and time in the long run.

How To Calculate Cubic Metres (CBM) When Shipping

Determining Cubic Metres or CBM is the first step you should take in determining how to ship your cargo. You don’t want to be shipping FCL cargo as FCL Groupage cargo nor do you want to be shipping FCL Groupage Cargo as FCL, unless obviously you have reached or exceeded the break-even point of your cargo which I teach in the section FCL vs FCL Groupage.

The CBM of a consignment is always calculated

L x W x H

e.g. 3,20 x 2,45 x 1,56

= 12,23CBM

For Seafreight shipments, the idea is to calculate CBM in metres. If you have 320cm’s

then convert it to 3,2metres before starting the calculation.

If you have 45cm’s then your formula will have 0,45metres.

A 20ft General Purpose or dry container will pack a maximum of 33,2CBM whilst a 40ft General Purpose or dry container will pack 67,7CBM.

A 40ft High Cube which will allow you more space to pack and will pack a maximum of 76,3CBM.

All of the above are subject to your line of commodity and how it is packed.

40ft General Purpose containers and High Cube containers are only to be used for larger volume cargo and not larger weight cargo. In my article on cargo weights and road weight limitations, I discuss this point further.

Also to bear in mind is the length of your cargo, you can’t pack 13 metre steel pipes in a 40ft General Purpose container as it is only 12,036metres in length. The proper equipment will be required in this case.

For airfreight shipments, the method that the airline industry uses is the

Volume / Weight.

If you have 5 boxes that identical in size that are 23cmx34cmx56cm (LxBxH)

Presume that the actual weight of each of the 5 boxes is 10kgs.

What you will have to do first is separate the Volumetric from the Actual Weight.

Volumetric Weight Actual Weight

(23x34x56) div 6000 10kgs per box

= 43792 div 6000

= 7,30kgs per box

For 5 boxes : 7,30 x 5 For 5 boxes : 10 x 5

=36,5kgs =50kgs

The true weight needed to be declared to the airline here will be the actual weight

of the boxes of 50kgs.

Does Homeowner’s Insurance Cover Air Conditioning Repair?

Many people with their own homes worry about air conditioning repair costs, and wonder if their homeowner’s insurance covers this area. The simple answer is yes and no. If you have a natural disaster, fire, or some other catastrophe, and your air conditioner gets destroyed or damaged along with your home, then you are covered by your insurance. However, in many cases where it is just the air conditioner that is broken, or has a problem, then your homeowner’s insurance does not cover the repair costs. There are other ways to cover these costs.

When it comes to air conditioning repair, there is another kind of insurance that homeowners can buy. It is called major appliance insurance. This insurance has been advertised in the media and can be obtained online, or you can also ask your current insurance agent about it. What appliance insurance does is cover all of your major home appliances from your refrigerator, to your air conditioner, and most large appliances in between. How it works is if you have any kind of problem with your air conditioning unit, no matter what time of the day or night, you call the insurance hot line, let them know the nature of the problem, and they call a technician to come and fix it for you. This can come in handy in the middle of the summer, when you unit breaks down.

How much you will actually pay for air conditioning repair when it comes to appliance insurance depends on the coverage, and the deductible. If you want, you can pay a higher premium with no deductible, and if you need someone to come out and fix it, you will have no out of pocket expenses. The higher the deductible, the more you will have to pay for repairs, it’s just that simple

Another way to cut down on these costs is getting an extended warranty on your unit when you purchase it. While many air conditioners come with at least a two year warranty, in many cases you have the option of an extended warranty, which can extend it up to twice as long as the regular warranty will. Now this may cost extra, in some cases up to $100, but considering how much repair costs are, this is a small price to pay for added peace of mind.

So as you can see, there are ways to get around your homeowner’s insurance when it comes to air conditioning repair costs. In many cases, the newer the unit, the more efficient it is, the easier and cheaper the coverage will be, and the length of the warranty will be longer. The older the unit, the harder it is to find parts for, and it may take longer for the technician to find the problem. A new more efficient unit will not only cut down on your repair costs, but also save you money because it will work better, and use less energy.

Air Conditioner Freezing Up? Try This Out

A common complaint among homeowners is that their central air conditioner is always freezing up. If this is the case for you then you might want to think about doing a maintenance check. Failure to have the problem properly diagnosed could result in long-lasting damage to this crucial unit.

While there are, in fact, several reasons that your air conditioner is freezing up the typical suspect is your refrigerant levels. There could be a leak in one of the lines or it has just run out.

When this happens the coil starts to get extremely cold and ice begins to form on it. It builds and builds and over several days, maybe weeks, it grows into a large block of ice. Over time this causes damage to your compressor (the large block unit on the outside of your house). To prevent this you need to make certain that your refrigerant levels are routinely checked once a year in order to prevent this from happening.

A quick solution to ice forming is shutting off your compressor, while letting the fans still run, so that the excess ice melts.

The evaporator coil also needs a good place to drain its excess condensation. You will notice some type of tube or pipe attached to it for this purpose. If this device gets blocked, some way, it can cause a huge build up that could damage your unit and cause it to freeze up. If you should notice that the problem is getting worse over time then you need to call a certified HVAC technician to come out and find the exact location where the leak is and repair the problem.

Another quick fix is just changing out the air conditioner filter. You would not believe how many homeowners let several years go by in between them doing this. These filters are at the most $10 and making sure they stay unclogged is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to preventing costly problems with your air conditioner. A dirty filter will restrict good air flow which in turns will lower the cooling point of the evaporator coil below its typical freezing point. You need to inspect all the vents and keep on top of them staying debris free and clean.

Lastly, you need to check the thermostat. It’s rare but sometimes it is not the central A/C unit that is malfunctioning but the unit (thermostat) controlling it. Not only should you set your inside temperature 15 degrees lower than the temperature outside but you need to have it inspected once every several years. There is a way a homeowner can inspect the thermostat himself by discounting the Y terminal and seeing if the air conditioner still turns on but you should only attempt this if you really know what you are doing.

Tips For Cleaning Rubber Auto Floor Mats

You may have the most expensive and the most protective auto floor mat in your car, but how sure are you that it will last long to serve you? If you don’t want to spend often in purchasing new mats to replace your damaged mat, you would have to know how to take care of your floor covering for it to last longer and protect your car’s floor board and upholstery effectively.

One of the mot popular floor covering available in our market right now is the rubber floor mat. This product is popular because it is so convenient to use and clean and it looks good on the floor. This type of mat is so good in protecting your car’s interior from harmful foreign particles, it can take a lot of abuse from and still look goon on your vehicle’s flooring. But like any other maintenance materials, this too needs to be cleaned on a regular basis to keep it in good condition.

Cleaning your auto floor covering is very simple, and it can take not more than 10 minutes of your time. Here are the things you will need:

-Hose and water source

-Vinyl/rubber protectant

-Microfiber towels

Step 1, take the floor mat out of your vehicle and place it on a flat and hard surface.

Step 2, rinse the dirt off using the hose. Use a high pressure to blast off any dirt or mud that dried on the surface of your mat.

Step 3, Pick up the mat and shake the excess water off.

Step 4, spray the rubber protectant onto the surface of the rubber, make sure you spray the entire surface of the mat.

There are many types of vinyl/rubber guards available in the market right now, there’s a high gloss, neutral and low gloss. Choose according to the design of your preference and design of your mat.

Step 5, wipe the rubber using the microfiber towels thoroughly.

Step 6, spray additional vinyl protectant on dry areas of the mat, leave no dry areas unsprayed.

There you have it, a clean auto floor mat!

Area Rugs – Choosing the Right One

If you have decided you want to add area rugs to your décor but aren’t sure what to choose, then this is the article for you! There are many factors to take into consideration, some practical and some more artistic. Consider all these options to ensure you get an area rug that is perfect for your look and needs.

Weighing the Pros & Cons of Hand-Made v/s Machine Made

There are several pros and cons to both hand-made as well as machine made area rugs. Hand-made rugs are usually very high quality and each one is unique. They offer charm and value that machine made rugs do not. If the materials used to create the rugs are also hand-dyed, the rug will have color variations throughout; while factory produced yarns tend to be more consistent in color. The color variations in hand-made varieties are often desirable to show that the rug is not mass-produced, and can even add added visual texture to the piece.

The Durability Factor

Consider the traffic in which the area rug is to be used. Different materials and constructions hold up better under heavy use than others. Also some materials are more stain repellent and easier to clean. Even within materials, there are variations in quality. Wool for example can vary greatly. Consider whether you are willing to clean the area rug yourself or if you plan to have a professional clean it. Some materials just aren’t logical if you plan to do the cleaning at home. Many people now desire to bring the inside out and use area rugs in outdoor settings. Look for rugs specifically designed for this type of application. Many synthetic materials are now used that repel moisture and resist mold and mildew.

Getting the Look Just Right

Once you know what type of rug you want to buy and what material you want it to be made of, it is time to consider how it will look in your space. First think about the overall pattern and color. Area rugs are often much like large pieces of artwork and a focal point in a room, so think about what mood you would like the area rug to represent. When shopping for rugs, consider how the color and pattern make you feel. Also think about how much of a focal point you want the rug to be. Certain colors and patterns will become more of a backdrop for other furnishings, while others draw the eye and become a very important element.

Also analyze the size of rug you will need. It is always a good idea to decide on the largest rug first and choose accent rugs that coordinate with it. Typically people will either choose the biggest rug that will comfortable fit in the space or choose a rug size that will offset a furniture grouping within a larger room. If the area rug is to go under furniture, calculate the minimum size it will need to be to truly tie all the pieces together into one coherent design. Make sure the edge of your rug will not fall in a place where people will trip over it easily such as a footpath into a turn.

My Rug (Carpet) Shows Vacuum Cleaner Marks – Will it Go Away?

Almost all Cut-Pile (Plush or Saxony) Rugs or Carpets will show vacuum tracks and footprints. It is the inherent nature of this type of rug. This style of rug has fiber bundles that almost stand straight up, and you essentially walk on the tops of the twisted bundles. Cut-Pile rugs in solid colors will tend to show more than a multi-color, but they all will show to some extent. I am always mindful of this when I consult with a client, and I will generally ask them if tracks and footprints bother them. If it does, I will show them another style of rug or carpet.

Texture styles are a little better as each fiber bundle has a kink in the pile that makes it less likely to show, but even this style will still show some marks, mostly in solid colors. If you absolutely hate vacuum marks, choose a different style of Rug. Available in solid and some multi-colors.

Cut-Berber, or Frise a modern (and shorter) cousin to Shag, is great choice due to the fact that the fiber bundles lay over to the side. As you walk on the sides of the fiber bundles instead of the tops of the bundles, these will hardly show vacuum and traffic marks at all. If they begin to flatten in traffic areas, a regular vacuuming will spring the fibers back to life. This style of rug is available in solid and multi-colors.

High-low (Sculptured or cut-and-loop) style rug or carpet was the most popular style from the 1970’s to the 1990’s. The construction of these rugs leaves trails or patterns of looped carpet throughout the cut-pile. This style of rug (or carpet) usually comes in multi-colors. Although this style of carpet does not usually show vacuum trails and foot prints, it is no longer in vogue. Therefor the choices are quite narrow for this style. Over the past few years, most of my clients that choose this style, will choose it for a rental property.

Berber is a looped style rug or carpet. Since the construction of this style of rug is all loops in continuous lines, there is very little chance that it will show vacuum marks and footprints. Looped style rugs and carpets are generally favored in high-traffic areas and no matter what fiber they are made from, they will generally clean very easy. The only fallibility of continuous loops is their tendency to run (like panty-hose) if a loop gets snagged and a pet or the vacuum pulls on it. If your Berber rug gets a snag, be sure to trim it even to the pile or apply some latex adhesive and glue the loop back into place. If you buy a rug with low and tight loops, you will have less trouble with snags.

Although cut-pile rugs and carpets will show vacuum tracks and footprints, they reflect light in such a manner as to give the flooring a very luxurious effect. You can recognize a true plush by the frosted sheen across the tops of the fibers. This luxurious look comes at the cost of footprints and vacuum trails. Most affordable area rugs are machine-made, cut-pile or Plush style. You can decrease the appearance of vacuum trails and footprints by choosing a patterned or multi-color rug. Most high-end rugs are hand-made. Hand-woven rugs will show less trails than hand-knotted rugs. Since the average person usually buys a machine-made rug, I will leave off the virtues of hand-made rugs for another occasion.

Choosing your rug by Style rather than just color and pattern can assure that you will minimize the appearance of vacuum trails and footprints. However, this minor inconvenience is a small price to pay for the luxury and beauty of a true Saxony area rug.

Adhesive Failure – How to Break the Bond of Different Adhesives

If you are facing the task of separating an object that has been previously glued together, it is important to know that adhesives have certain characteristics that make them adhere and also fail. Technically speaking, adhesives cause bond between substrates, therefore what you are trying to do is make the adhesive fail to break that bond.

First thing you need to do is find out what kind of adhesive you are dealing with. If it is a silicone based adhesive
– commonly used for caulking- you are in luck because it is one of the easiest adhesives to get to fail. Just apply some heat to it and then you can peel it off. Try using a hair dryer.

If you are dealing with a stronger adhesive like cyanoacrylate, better known as crazy glue, try using some acetone which is the main ingredient in nail polish remover- make sure you are in a well ventilated area otherwise the fumes will get to you, so open the windows and let some air in. If you just spilled the glue, pour some water on it. It will cause the glue to cure and solidify. Then you can use some tool and scrape it off. Do not use paper towels to wipe it this could cause fumes, believe me this is something you do not want to happen, cyanoacrylate fumes are irritating. Porous surfaces are more difficult to remove glue from so it might take you longer to get the glue to fail.

To remove epoxy glue, use some acetone and follow the precautions previously mentioned. Let the acetone sit for a few minutes, this will cause the epoxy glue to soften making it easier to remove. Proceed to scrape it off with a tool.

Learning what type of glue you are dealing with and with some patience you should be able to remove that stubborn glue with out a problem. Always keep in mind the surface that you are working on and how delicate it is to avoid permanent damage while trying to remove the glue.