How to Replace Your RV Awnings

RV Awnings provides us shade and it becomes an indispensable part during hot summer days. These awnings also give us an extra living space and they become quite useful during camping. Proper maintenance and care should be done to increase the life of awnings. Correct upkeep is needed to make it durable. You should adhere to manufacturer recommendations and ideas written in brochure supplied along with awning. You should repair your awning immediately if it has small holes. In the event of little rips or openings, you should restore all of them instantly prior to the rips or openings change too large. If it is aged along with a lot of fragile places then you can consider replacing it. It’s not a big deal or very tough to replace the old awnings with new one. Whether it is the mobile home or even journey truck, the majority of the leisure automobile holder chooses to repair or replace their old awnings on their own. I will explain you procedure in detail to replace your old awnings. I will give you tips and precautions which you should keep in mind before replacing or changing your old awning. Believe me it’s very simple and you can do it on your own. So let’s take a look at steps needed to replace it.

Just before replacing the actual RECREATIONAL VEHICLE awning, you need to read all the directions given in brochure regarding replacement of awnings. You should thoroughly go through it. If you’re not really mechanically sound and don’t have any previous mechanical experience then disassembling the actual awning could be harmful. Therefore before disassembling it, you must read all the safety and preventive measures. Just in case if the dimension of RECREATIONAL VEHICLE awning is too large then you must take help of a third person for easy disassembling and replacement.

Replacing awning fabric is much easier then replacing the whole unit. Spare parts to be purchased should be of same brand as of original awning. This increases the compatibly and will make your work much easier. Just before buying the actual components, be sure you measure the actual dimensions. After that, purchase components of suitable dimensions that will fit on your current awnings.

With regard to altering the actual RECREATIONAL VEHICLE awning, to begin with, setup the actual awning. Examine if the awning cloth is attached through button snaps or additional buckling tapes. Unwrap buckling tape or unsnap the button snaps. After this, unwrap the worn-out awning fabric very carefully.

Lay the new fabric on floor or any other flat surface. Hold its one side and attach it to framework with the help of button snaps or even buckling tapes. Make sure that Ends of fabric are properly buckled or wrapped with framework.

Congrats, you have changed the fabric of your awning on your own.

If in case you face any difficulty while replacing fabric then you always have option to call some professional to do this work for you. You can also give a call to manufacturer for service.

Pavement Paint Selection and Usage

When it comes to the placement of traffic markings and other signs in a parking lot, the most cost effective and practical option is the use of pavement paint. Thermoplastic markings, while incredibly durable and able to last as long as a decade before being replaced, are also prohibitively expensive, and largely unnecessary given the relatively low traffic volume and vehicle speeds that are encountered in a parking lot. Pavement marking tape, on the other hand, is designed for temporary structures or events, and is not meant to be constantly replaced in an area that will see years and years or regular use. Thermoplastics and marking tapes also lack the flexibility that pavement paint possesses, since paint can technically be used to paint any word or icon in existence, limited only by the skill of the painter or the presence of the right stencils for the task. A wide variety of durable stencils are available on the market today, ranging from simple numbers and letters, to popular icons, to court patterns for popular street games like shuffleboard and hopscotch. Of course, the only way to take advantage of these stencils is by purchasing pavement paint, and sticking to painting as chosen method of marking application.

There are quite a number of different kinds of pavement paint, which are designed to be sprayed or painted on differing surface types. Freshly laid asphalt and new concrete are very different in their stability and composition from concrete and asphalt that have been around for some time, so the paint formulations for these surfaces likewise have to be adapted for them. Pavement paints are relatively quick-dry, and should be ready to use within 60 minutes of their application. Presently, the norm is for these paints to be water-based, out of concern for the environment and in consideration of the harm that harsher chemicals can inflict. These paints replace the former solvent-based ones, which are admittedly sturdier but also released injurious substances into the air. Thus, the trade-off of durability for safety is the current norm.

Color is also something to think about when buying a set of pavement paints. Yellow and white are popular choices, since they catch the light easily and are visible even in the evenings. Red is also good for marking prohibited areas, due to the association of prohibition or warning with this color. However, don’t let these options stifle your creativity. If you think that other colors, like blue and green, suit the parking lot better or conform to a prescribed company color scheme, then you should be free to mark the lot accordingly. Just be aware of local ordinances that may require certain markings or icons to be a particular color.

Your location may also be prone to the ravages of inclement weather or extreme climate conditions. If this is the case, you would be prudent to pick up pavement paint that has all-weather performance, and is more formidable against rain, snow and sun. It may be more expensive than the usual pavement paint, but the additional cost will translate directly into longer life and less frequent maintenance repainting on your part.

Grand Canyon Skywalk – How Much Does it Really Cost?

If you are visiting Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon Skywalk is a must-see attraction. Tickets to the Glass Bridge average about $25 per person. However, depending on how you get to the Bridge, there are additional costs that you need to be aware. Here are the most common:

Parking Fee

Grand Canyon West is located 120 miles east of Las Vegas. The last 15 miles are over a rough, dirt road. High-clearance vehicles are recommended. There’s a car park at the end of the road. Cost to park: $20

Park Entrance Fee

The Skywalk is on Hualapai Indian tribal land. To access it, you will be required to buy a permit, known as the Legacy Pass:

  • Adults: $43.05
  • Kids (3-11 years): $35.03
  • Senior/Military: $39.85

The Pass includes unlimited shuttle bus use, which stops at the Skywalk, Eagle Point, Guano Point, and Hualapai Ranch.

Grand Canyon Skywalk Tickets

Currently, tickets to the Skywalk are:

  • Adults: $29.95
  • Kids (3-11 years): $22.46
  • Senior/Military: $26.96

This entitles you to unlimited one-day access to the Bridge.

Photos

You are not allowed to bring any personal electronics onto the Skywalk, including digital cameras, cell phones, and digital video recorders. Professional photographers are on the scene to snap photos of you. Cost per photo is $30. Quality? Professional.

Lockers

Secure lockers for your personal belongings are $3.

Fuel Surcharges

This fee was added to bus and helicopter tours during the spike in gas prices in 2008. Most companies have waived it. Make sure to read the fine print.

The Real Cost

No matter how you slice it, your base cost to visit Grand Canyon Skywalk as an adult is:

Park Entrance Fee: $43.05 Skywalk Ticket: $29.95 Total: $73

If you rent a car, add the following costs:

Rental Car (one day, Sport Utility Vehicle): $60 Gas (full tank): $50 Parking: $20 Total: $130

Many people opt to take a bus or helicopter tour from Las Vegas to the Skywalk. Bus tours start at $95 (includes lunch, park entrance fee) and require you to only pay for your Skywalk ticket. Helicopter tours begin at $350 and include VIP admission to the Bridge and park entrance fee. Bus tours take a full day; helicopters require half a day. Most of these tours can be upgraded to include, among other things, a helicopter ride to the bottom of the Grand Canyon or a pontoon boat cruise on the Colorado River.

Skywalk Quick Facts

More than a million people have experienced the Glass Bridge since it opened in 2007. The structure extends 70 feet beyond the West Rim of the Grand Canyon, suspending the visitor some 4,000 feet above the Colorado River. The Bridge can support more than 800 people at one time, but maximum occupancy is 120 people. Drive time from Las Vegas takes about 2.5 hours; helicopter flight time is 45 minutes. No digital cameras are allowed in order to prevent chipping of the structure’s glass panels.

Wrap UP

Purchasing a ticket to see the Grand Canyon Skywalk is a straightforward affair. It’s how you choose to get to the Glass Bridge where you have to do your homework. Using a rental car has its own set of unique costs (car rental, gas, parking, etc.). Same goes for taking a bus or helicopter tour from Las Vegas. Pick the one that fits your travel budget the best. Then make your way to the Skywalk, one of Las Vegas’ most popular day trips and attractions.

Manufacturing Management Software – What Is an Assembly, and How Can It Help Me?

Does your accounting staff spend excessive time entering each component of a finished good into your software, in order to take the item out of inventory? Does your warehouse staff struggle with which items to pull in order to begin a manufacturing run? Are you in the dark about your true manufacturing costs and profitability? These are just some of the question that may be solved if you start to use assemblies within your manufacturing management software. Learn more about the terms associated with assemblies, and how they can work together to help your manufacturing business become more organized, operate more efficiently, and increase profitability.

Assemblies Maintenance

Assemblies Maintenance is the process of defining which components or parts make up your finished item. The finished item is known as an assembly. Most manufacturing management software will let you create an assembly with all of its components as well as labor (often set up as a ‘service’ inventory item), so that true costs may be calculated. The system may also allow you to include costs from outside services, such as sending out an item to have it painted, which can be helpful if the components require other services before being included in an assembly. Once the assembly for a standard assembly item has been created and saved within your software system, that assembly can be used again and again. You may choose to copy a previously saved assembly and customize it for a different customer, saving significant time.

Assemblies Production

A production plan is a sequential list of assemblies to be built, one at a time. During this ‘building’ process, components are removed from inventory. Many systems will also allow for ‘un-building’, which put components back in inventory, helpful when an assembly was not completed or an order was cancelled. This eliminates the need to remove (or return) individual item components from your software system, as all components are simultaneously removed when the build is completed. Prior to the creation of a production plan, a shortage report can be generated to verify whether all needed items are available in stock. Once the actual physical building of the item is completed on the shop floor, the assembly is then built within the software.

Serial and Lot Numbered Items

Some components within an assembly may contain lot or serial numbers. If you record and track the numbers for each of these components as you receive them into inventory, you may also be able to select which serial/lot number is being used as a component within the assembly you are building. This is an important feature for those who wish to keep tracking the number of the component, even after it has been built into an assembly. If this is a feature you require for your manufacturing operation, be sure to choose a system that allows for that capability.

Bill of Materials

The bill of materials is a document that shows all of the information about a production plan, including its assemblies and required components. This document can be created by the software system once a production plan has been created within the system. The bill of materials typically shows the quantity of components that are needed, and also the quantity that is currently on hand, so that missing components can be put on order. The bill of materials is also useful for warehouse staff, as it provides a comprehensive list of items that need to be pulled for a product run.

Setting up assemblies within your manufacturing management software can greatly help increase efficiency and profits for your manufacturing operation.

Mounting Wood On The Wood Lathe: Using A Glue Block

While one of the great advances in woodturning in recent years has been the development of the four jaw chuck to mount wood for turning, the price tag on a good chuck is a shock to many turners. In fact the price for a decent four jaw chuck often accedes the price of many starter lathes. One of the things that a wood turner needs to remember when going into faceplate turning is the use of the old fashioned glue block for holding wood.

The use of the glue block arises from the desire to not have screw holes observed in the bottom of such items as bowls and platters. Generally such an item is made by first rough turning it from green wood and then letting it dry in the shop for some time. Later it is remounted to the wood lathe and finish turned. It is during this remounting that it may be screwed to the faceplate, thus leaving holes in the finished product. These holes then have to be filled or covered in some way. In addition, the length of the screws determines a certain depth of wood that cannot be used or the tools would hit the screws themselves.

A simple solution, and one centuries old, is the use of a glue block to hold the wood to the lathe. First the bottom of the bowl is flattened using a plane or other tool. Second, a waste block of wood is screwed to the faceplate. Third the waste block is flattened. Third, the waste block is glued to the bottom of the bowl using carpenter’s white glue.

Generally a piece of craft paper is glued between the waste block and the bowl. This enables the bowl to be finish turned and then a chisel blow between the block and the bowl splits the paper down center. Then the waste paper can be sanded from the bottom of the bowl and the bottom finished. If desired, the paper could also be removed from the waste block and it could be used again.

There are a few draw backs to this system. While glue has a great hold but it needs to be clamped and let dry for at least eight hours. Also, the wood used has to be dry so this can not help with green turnings. In addition there is the fuss of sanding away all that glue and paper, a combination known for quickly clogging sand paper.

Thankfully, a couple of modern glues rise to the occasion. When turning dry wood such as a dried bowl blank, hot glue can be used to glue the wood block to the bowl. Withing a couple of minutes it is ready to mount on the lathe and turn. Either the block can be parted from the blank with the lathe running or the whole assembly can be taken off and the waste block removed with a a sharp rap of a chisel at the glue line. Any remaining glue is easily pealed off.

Similarly a medium thick cyanoacrylate glue can be used to bond a green blank to a waste block. The glue is applied to the waste block and accelerator to the blank and the two are pressed together. Again, a couple of minutes are sufficient to hold the work for turning and again a sharp blow at the glue line will separate them after the turning is done.

Modern adhesives simply allow the old methods to work in today’s shops. While the technology advances us a little we are still working in the historic fashion. The old ways may not always be the best, but they certainly work and work well.

Installing Concrete Sidewalks at Your New Home

Concrete sidewalks can vary in shapes, colors and be formed into any shape you can imagine. Before starting on this project, look around at other homes and businesses to see what can be done but don’t be limited by what you see. Use your imagination. Colored concrete is available today from most Redi-mix suppliers and concrete color stains are also another way to obtain a beautiful finished product. There are “cast-on” products out there that can provide a non-slip surface, a super hard surface and even anti-spalling compounds that help keep the sidewalk from chipping due to the use of winter salt. Most redi-mix concrete dries in some shade of beige color depending on the color if the sand and Portland cement used. Ask your supplier where he has poured his product and go look at it. This will give you an idea of what the “aged” product will look like later. Once you have decided what color concrete you are going to use, decide what strength concrete you need. I recommend the use of 3000# strength concrete for all sidewalks except very heavy use or vehicle traffic. If vehicles will be crossing the sidewalk, use 4000# or 5000#. It will cost a few dollars more a yard, but will last a great deal longer.

TOOLS REQUIRED-

Hammer, sledge, string line, and level with tripod. 4′ hand level, pointed and flat shovels, wood 2×4 for screeding (leveling) of the concrete, bolt cutters, safety glasses, work gloves, fine broom and two edger’s called sidewalk edger’s and v-groove styles. A metal sidewalk edge finishing tool, a V-groove tool for center joints and a steel trowel are a must. Most masons prefer to use a magnesium float to put the initial finish on their walks prior to applying the final broom finish.

MATERIALS REQUIRED-

Concrete is ordered by the cubic yard. It is quite simple to figure out how many yards you need for your project using the following formula: Length x Width x Height (thickness) divided by 27 =? Cubic yards. A typical example: Your sidewalk is 3′ wide, 3-0 feet long by 4″ thick. Using the formula above: 3′ x 30’x.33 /27=1.1 cubic yards. You cannot order.1 cubic yards. So it is either 1 or 1.5 yards. All Redi-mix companies charge what they call a short load charge for anything under 6 yards. So there are choices here to be made. Is there anything else that needs concrete? Make the walk a little wider? Add a patio area? Ask the Redi-mix company what the charge is for 1.5 or 2 yards. The price may be the same anyway. While we here, I want to spend a minute discussing getting the concrete to your site. Trucks are heavy. Very heavy. If your sidewalk or patio is in the rear yard, either the truck has to be able to get to it or you will have to wheel it in wheelbarrows. Wheeling 1 yard is not bad, wheeling 5 or 6 yards is a brute. You will need plenty of help and good wheelbarrows. Redi-mix companies also charge extra for any time spent over 1 hour on site. IF you decide to take the truck into the rear yard, be prepared for lawn damage. Concrete companies are not responsible for damage to your property if you direct them to drive over the lawn. Worse yet is if they pass over the septic system, buried pipes, etc. and damage them. BE SURE there is nothing underneath that can de damaged. Don’t guess!

A Redi-Mix truck can weigh over 40,000 pounds! It will leave a lasting impression on your lawn and can damage lightweight asphalt driveways. Be careful where you send it.

You will need some misc. mixed lumber to form your concrete walk. 2×4’s in long lengths work best. If you have a curve in the walk, it is best formed using strips of non-tempered masonite or 1/4″ plywood. Whatever you use, it does not have to be pretty. It is going to be removed after the pour. Buy a bundle of 1″x2″ or 1″x3″ for stakes. These can be cut into 1 foot lengths and points cut on them. You will also need a couple of pounds of 8 penny common nails.

LAYOUT-

The easiest way to layout a new sidewalk is to use your garden hose. Simply lay the hose out on the ground where you want the walk to go. Forms do not have to be made of wood. Things such as brick, wood edging, pre-formed plastic edging are all used and produce many different edge finishes. If you use these types of things, just take extra care not to splash concrete on them. Concrete stains or discolors very easily and does not wash off well. When everything dries, the concrete you think you washed off, leaves a permanent stain. Another very helpful item available today for homeowner use is upside down paint at most hardware or box stores and comes in a variety of colors. This makes it very easy to spray a layout line for digging or removing sod or soil. DO NOT spray your hose unless you want it to be that color for a very long time. A few carefully placed spots that you connect after removing the hose is fine.

Make sure that you mark out the lines a few inches wider than the finished walk width. You need to get your 2 x4’s and stakes inside the excavation and in most cases flush with the surrounding ground. If you are going to expose the edges of the new walk above ground, you will also have to finish the edges when you pour.

GROUND PREPARATION-

Never, never place concrete on frozen ground or mud. You need a firm foundation base for the new walk. You must remove the concrete thickness of earth plus the stone you will be placing underneath. A 4″ walk usually gets 4″ of stone base or good clean run-of bank sand and gravel. After removing the 8″ of earth, place your sub-base material and tamp into place. Make it slightly wider than you walk width. Your forms will sit on top of the base. NOTE: Now is the time to run any yard lighting wires or conduits under the walk before you pour. Even if the lighting is in the future, you will be glad you make preparations now. Place a piece of 1″ PVC conduit with caps under the walk for future use.

FORM WORK-

OK, we are using wood forms for this walk. Layout your 2×4’s along the walk and drop stakes every few feet. Your 2x4s will be installed end to end so a stake is required at each joint. Starting on one side, install your 2×4’s using enough stakes to firmly hold them in place. They must be straight and plumb. Nail the 2×4″s to each stake but DO NOT drive the heads all the way in. You have to remove these stakes later and it is a lot easier to get a hold of the nail head if it sticking out a little. If you have curves in your walk and are using 1/4″ material to form you will of course have to use many more stakes. Just make sure the form is not going to move when you place the concrete against it.

Now cut a piece of scrap 1×2 the width of your walk. (3′ in this case). Using this as a guide, install the opposite side of your formwork. It will save you having to measure over and over again and speeds up the work.

CONCRETE PLACING-

Ok, now we are ready to go. Check your list. Forms are all nailed? Not raining? Plenty of help? Got all the tools you need?

And most important did you order the concrete? Most companies require at least two days notice for homeowners to order. Commercial accounts come first due to their large volume of orders. BE READY! Remember the truck clock starts when he gets there, not when you start pouring. Using your garden hose, if the ground is very dry, slightly dampen it. This will help prevent premature drying of the concrete by the ground sucking the water out of the concrete before you get finished. Starting at the end the farthest from the truck (you will see why later) start placing the concrete in the forms. One person must, using his trowel, push the concrete into place and do a preliminary leveling within the forms. After placing a few feet of concrete, using a 2×4 as a screed, he can then level the entire width of the walk by sliding the 2×4 back forth over the top of the forms. You need one person leveling concrete with shovel, 2nd person using 2×4 as a screed to level concrete flush with the tops of forms and an extra third hand to wheel concrete, handle the chute, etc.

If a low spot in the concrete develops, just use the trowel to pickup some wet concrete and toss it in. Move back and re-screed over that area. If too much concrete develops in front of the screed just push or pull it into the area without concrete. You will soon get the hang of it. The people helping can watch as they pour the concrete from their wheelbarrows to be sure they don’t overwhelm you. If you work slow and steady it goes pretty fast. OK, we now have the entire form filled with concrete. Place a little bit extra in one wheelbarrow and let the truck go. Now you need somewhere for the truck to wash out his chutes and you need to wash your tools and wheelbarrows. Concrete stains and gets HARD! Put it somewhere that can be easily cleaned later. Do not leave piles of concrete that cannot be moved.

FINISHING-

You get a few minutes break here. Have your favorite beverage and relax a little. The concrete will take a little while to start to setup but keep an eye on it. Touch it with your finger just like a cake. If it feels somewhat solid, now is the time to put the preliminary edge on it. Using the edger with a rolled lip, run it along the entire outside edges of your walk way. This will form a smooth sealed edge. You will have to pickup the edger many times and re-start. Just backup a few inches and moving ahead to remove the lip left when you picked the edger up. This will take some time so don’t let the concrete “get away” (harden) on you. Once you have done an area, a 2nd person can start placing the v-grooves every 4 or 5 feet (less if you like the look). Using the edger, simply push the edger across the width of the walkway with enough pressure that both sides of the edger sit firmly on the concrete. This will leave a neat v-groove in the walk. You will get the hang of this very quickly. Don’t worry for now about the little lip of concrete left on each side of the new groove and edges you made. Now using your broom, very lightly draw it across the width of the walk way being careful not to draw it across the v-grooves but do some very close to them and the edge of the walk. Read that sentence again. You can ruin the whole appearance of the walk if you mess this up. Be gentle but firm enough to leave broom lines in the concrete and wipe away the little lips of concrete you left behind when edging. The broom lines can be as heavy or as light as you like. This will leave a non-slip surface. Always broom across the path of the traffic, never with it. The trick here is to not to let the concrete harden before you are done. Start with a SMALL project and work your way up. After your first pour, you will know some of the tricks and better able to judge how fast concrete sets up.

Keep some plastic or tarps handy just in case you get a surprise downpour. You can quickly throw plastic over the pour and save it. If the rain washes out the top layer of concrete, the walk will be ruined.

It is very strongly suggested that you do not leave a smooth or hard trowel finish on any outside walk. It will become very slippery when wet. A broom finished side walk is what you normally see. There are colored aggregates that can be scattered over a walk to add color and a non-slip surface at the same time.

OTHER FINISHES-

Stamping-There are available metal stamping tools that can be used to place an imprint in wet concrete to simulate stone, pavers, brick, etc. These can produce a dramatic effect from plain concrete but take some experience to use.

COLORING-

You may be able to buy pre-colored concrete from your supplier. It is expensive but can come in many different colors. It is produced from regular wet concrete with a powder added to the mix while still in the truck. Pour the entire area in one pour. Just a slight change in the amount of powder or water or sand in each truck can produce a different shade of concrete. This will show when dry. The powder is measured in ounces with a postal scale. It is that exacting. Concrete suppliers have color charts for concrete but this needs to be ordered well ahead of time as they do not stock all colors.

EXPOSED AGGREGATE-

This is a really tricky method of finishing concrete. You purchase your concrete specifying the use of round washed river rock 3/4″ or smaller. If you visit the concrete supplier, you can see what color the gravel he has available. Most river rock is beige/brown in various shades. It is not an exact science though and there will be some variation from week to week of what you can get. I have on occasion for a very large project, ordered enough stone to supply the total amount of yards required for the work. The supplier will of course want payment as he will have to wait to supply it as you need it, but it is one way to control final color and costs. Placement of the concrete is the same as any other side walk however the finishing is much different. After edging your walk, using your trowel you must place a flat finish on the walkway and let it sit. At just the right time, using your garden hose and spray nozzle, you literally wash off the top of the concrete removing the cement and leaving the stones beneath exposed. It is tricky but leaves a gorgeous finish. Too much water or pressure and you undermine the stones, too little and the concrete won’t wash off enough to leave the stones exposed. The trick here is wash to before it gets too hard. You might well want to try process on a small test sample during a different pour. Washing lets the color of the stones show through. Do not try to finish after washing; you will smear the final finish

CLEANUP-

Always clean up your tools and yourself as soon as possible after the pour. Concrete can cause serious burns to the skin due to the lye in the concrete and many people are quite allergic to it. Always wear eye protection when pouring concrete. No matter how careful you are placing the concrete, it splashes everywhere. A small drop in your eye can cause serious pain and permanent eye injury. Place covers on anything you do not want concrete to get upon. Shrubs, flowers, lawns, etc. should be protected.

Enjoy your new sidewalk. You saved a ton of money doing it yourself.

John Singer Sargent – One of the Greatest American Realist Painters

John Singer Sargent was one of the most venerated American ‘Realist’ painters, sculptors, and drafters of his time. He was born on January 12, 1856, in Florence, Italy, to an expatriate American couple. Sargent’s parents, father, FitzWilliam, an eye surgeon, and mother, Mary, a singer, desired to settle in Europe and therefore, John Singer Sargent had the influence of European culture despite his American lineage. John’s mother, an amateur artist, played a significant role in introducing him to painting. He did not get a formal education, but had gained immense knowledge in art, music, and literature (French, Italian, & German) through his short excursions across the Europe.

During 1874-1878, a famous French artist, Carolus-Duran, tutored Sargent. Duran taught the artist the direct application of brush on canvas, a painting technique earlier invented by Diego Velazquez. The works of John Singer Sargent were initially themed on landscapes and buildings, which later graduated to portraits painting under Duran’s guidance. John’s first portrait painting was of his friend, Fanny Watts, in 1877, while in 1879, he painted that of Carolus-Duran. Soon after, the artist visited Spain to study Velazquez’s works. Spanish Music and Dance also fascinated him, which was well reflected in his later paintings like “Al Jaleo (1882).”

Upon his return in 1880s, Sargent was commissioned for many portraits. His richly textured and versatile paintings made him a very sought after portrait artist. His masterpiece, “The Daughters of Edward Darley Boit, 1882” shows four young girls of Edward Darley Boit. His other notable portrait, “Lady with the Rose (1882),” was a painting of Charlotte Burckhardt, with whom John supposedly had a romantic relationship.

Sargent started sending his paintings, such as “Dr. Pozzi at Home (1881)” and “Mrs. Henry White (1883)” to the Royal Academy in England. He later moved to London in 1882. In 1884, he painted his most controversial, “Portrait of Madame X.” The French society heavily decried the work, forcing the painter to return to London. By 1885, he nearly stopped getting French commissions. He visited Monet in 1885 and created the famous painting, “Claude Monet Painting at the Edge of a Wood,” depicting his fascinating use of colors. From here on, the English patrons unhappily labeled him as an ‘Impressionist’ painter. Sargent’s ‘Realist’ painting, “Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose (1887),” depicting two young girls lighting lanterns, however, was an instant success and hugely leveraged his recognition as a brilliant portrait painter. He held his first solo show at Boston, in 1888. His other notable portrait paintings were “Portrait of Robert Louis Stevenson and his Wife (1885),” “Lady Agnew of Lochnaw (1892),” and “Mrs. Hugh Hammersley (1892).” The much-appreciated John was made an ally of the Royal Academy in 1893.

In 1900, Sargent painted one of his most famous masterpieces, “An Interior in Venice,” a portrait of Curtis family and its palatial home. In 1907, the artist shut shop officially and was back to painting his first love, landscapes. The same year, he refused the knighthood to keep his American citizenship. During 1915-17, he even stayed in the US. Before his death on April 14, 1925, in London, the artist painted his last portrait of “Grace Curzon, Marchioness Curzon of Kedleston.”

John Singer Sargent, an ever bachelor, had a magnificent career, in which he created around 900 oil paintings and over 2,000 watercolors. He also made the portraits of two American presidents, “Theodore Roosevelt” and “Woodrow Wilson.” This ‘Realist’ painter sold his portraits handsomely at as high a price as $US 11 million. Recently, in December 2004, “Group with Parasols (A Siesta) (1905)” was sold for $US 23.5 million. During 1890-1916, the artist even made several charcoal sketched portraits and called them “Mugs.” His ‘murals’ orient the walls of the Boston Public Library. Admirers, critics, and many art galleries heavily appreciate and respect the scrupulous works of John Singer Sargent. He once quoted, “You can’t do sketches enough. Sketch everything and keep your curiosity fresh.”

Painting Contractors – What to Look For When Hiring a Painter

Painting Contractors come from every walk of life and have different styles and techniques when painting a home or business. When hiring a local Painter always ask questions regardless of what someone else told you. Ask for references about recent jobs where they painted so you can verify the work performed so you do not get stuck with a partially painting project that you could have done yourself for a lot less money.

Types of Painting Contractors.

Residential Painting Contractors who specialize in Interior and Exterior painting. Commercial Painting Contractors who specialize in larger projects like big commercial buildings, office buildings, large multi-family complexes like apartment buildings. Faux Painters specialize in custom painting finishes with unique textures.

Prices You Can Expect To Pay

When figuring in what it will cost to paint your home or property you will need to use these figures. Normally a Gallon of paint will cover approximately 400 Sq Ft of surface which would be equivalent to 1 small bedroom of wall space. The Normal 3000 Sq Ft Home will need approximately 15 gallons of Paint ranging from $10.00 Per Gallon on upwards of $40.00 per Gallon for better paint. Now keep in mind this does not include paint for the Trim Work which would cost you another $80.00 to $ 320.00 for just the paint alone.

Labor cost for hiring a Contractor usually would cost between 70-80 % of the total painting project mainly due to time and labor of preparing the house, moving furniture and cleaning up after the job is finished which the local painting pro needs to figure in there expenses which giving you a quote.

We always suggest getting at minimum 2-3 bids from Painting Contractors so that you can make sure everyone is being honest and reasonable on pricing. Another rule of thumb to go by is being on your toes if one of the bids is priced to cheap? Usually the pricing will be consistent within a few hundred dollars unless someone is either off on the bid or the other painters are trying to make a few dollars extra on the job.

How to Find a Local Painting Contractor

There are many choices when looking for a painting contractor near you. you can check the Yellow pages, Super pages, The Google Local Business Listings on the Internet or the newspaper from painters who may advertise in the local paper nearest you.

There are many websites as well to find local painters just by doing a search on the Internet for a local painter. I live in Florida in the Ft. lauderdale area and i can say there are probably over 1000-2000 registered painters within 30 miles of me.

Spades In Cartomancy – Tarot Reading With The Suit Of Danger And Troubles

Cartomancy is the art of divination using a common deck of playing cards. Spades is the suit of warning of danger and troubles ahead. Take care to learn the meanings of the various Spades in a clients reading, or even your own.

Cartomancy roots in the Tarot

When we think of cards and divination, we thank of the Tarot. In fact, modern playing cards are descended from the larger and more ornate Tarot deck. With the Major Arcana stripped away, excepting the fool, now transformed into the modern Joker, playing cards became simple to mass produce, and were a common pastime in most homes. It only stands to reason, that divination with cards would also pass to the new simpler deck. Originally, the meanings ascribed to the cards were an oral tradition, passed down from generation to generation. Later, with the advent of the printing press, these meanings were tabled and printed, becoming a fixture with parlor games, and with actual believers in this power.

Spades and the Client Card

When we perform a reading for someone, we pick a card to represent them in the layout. This placeholder or client card is by tradition either the King or Queen card from one of the four suits. The King of Spades is the usual card chosen to represent a dark haired older man. Likewise, the Queen of Spades is the preferred card to represent a dark haired older woman for a reading. Of course, if you use a card to represent the client in a reading, its inherent meaning as a reading card should be ignored. The new meaning of the card is to serve as a place holder to determine the distance of other cards and their corresponding influences from the client. Cards which fall next to the client card have their affects magnified, and will tend to happen sooner than cards which fall far away from the client card.

The Spade suit and its Meanings

Here are the common meanings of the cards in the suit of Spades. Keep in mind that Spades warn us of dangers, and troubling influences in our lives. The Ace of Spades predicts a highly emotional conflict or a failed love affair. It can also predict the death of a friend of loved one. The King of Spades calls for an encounter with an ambitious dark haired man, he will not have your best interest at heart. The Queen of Spades foretells a meeting with a dark haired woman who will act selfishly against you. The Jack of Spades predicts an encounter with a friend or acquaintance who is ineffective in aiding you; he means no harm, but his laziness holds him back. The Ten of Spades is a card of general ill-luck; it foretells misfortune due to your own attitudes or actions. The Nine of Spades is the “Bad Luck” card. It predicts failures for you due to events and actions outside your control. The Eight of Spades is the card of Ill wind; it warns of troubles in the future which may yet be avoided by quick action on your part.

The Seven of Spades is the “Break Up” card; it predicts the loss of a friend. The Six of Spades foretells a calming of troubled waters; troubles are passing, and things are looking up. The Five of Spades predicts setbacks and temporary problems; it also calls for eventual success once these problems are overcome. The Four of Spades predicts problems of a personal nature; Jealousy, worry, and minor illness are all possible manifestations of this card. The Three of Spades is foretells some kind of personal betrayal; someone has chosen to not keep faith with you. Lastly, the Two of Spades is like the root Ace card but to a lesser degree. This card foretells a possible scandal, and deception by someone close to you. It can also predict a separation between you and someone you trust.

Conclusion

The Spade suit can predict possible troubles and dangers for you in your life. These cards, along with the other three suits provide clues as to where your life will take you.

Snow Shovel Vs Snow Blower

There are many types of equipment invented to help you clear the snow and the most common equipments are the snow shovel and snow blower. However, as the price level for these two equipments are of huge differences yet able to help you to clear the snow properly, many are confused as to which to buy. Therefore, this article will brief you on the advantages of the equipments in hoping that you will able to make a wise decision.

Snow shovel is the most fundamental invention for snow clearing. Unlike the snow blowers, it uses no fuel or gas but only human capital. It is also easy to use even by the youngsters as there is no specific procedure involves. However, it environment-friendly equipment is not suitable for large area because it can only clear limited amount of snow at a time. If you insist on it, you are likely to need more time and human capitals as compared to the alternative.

On the other hand, the snow blower which comes in single and two stages is invented to speed up the snow clearing process. As snow blower is bigger, uses engines and generated by electrics, fuels or gas, one blower can clear snow approximately 10 times more and faster than you shoving the snow manually. However, the blowers are improper to be used by youngsters because they involve few specific procedures and techniques. The blowers also come with various dangers which may cause to fatal accidents so you must handle it with care and never use it as a toy. Although the snow blower is more expensive than the previous, it is nowadays used by many households and companies because it is speedier, more convenient and uses less human capital in snow clearing.

Finally, you should always determine the thickness and area of snow you which to clear so that you are not buying a too small or big snow clearing equipments. Of course, you should consider the price level too so that it is affordable to you.

Face Lift, Brow Lift, Eyelid Lift – Which Do I Need?

If you are considering some facial plastic surgery to correct the effects of aging, you might be wondering what the differences are between a face lift, brow lift, and eyelid lift procedures are. Let’s take a quick look at each of the three procedures to help clarify their differences a bit better for you in your mind.

The Face Lift

One of the most common facial cosmetic surgeries performed today is the face lift. A facelift can help older patients who have sagging, wrinkled skin on their face to achieve a more youthful appearance. Simply the act of tightening and smoothing the facial skin, and some removal of underlying fat deposits, can help to define facial features and shave years off of your appearance.

As you age, the muscles of your face relax and fat deposits begin to develop where they were not present in the past. The facelift surgical procedure entails the removal of some of the fat which has developed in the facial area, and in addition the muscles and skin are pulled tighter on the face. The entire procedure takes between 2 to 4 hours to do and recovery time is generally at least a couple of weeks.

Good candidates for a facelift are those people who want to regain their youthful look, rather than patients who want to change their appearance. Generally, these are performed on patients who are 60 years of age or older.

The Brow Lift

Many people do not need a full procedure; they simply need a brow lift, also known as a forehead lift, to help correct wrinkles and sagging in the upper face. Similar to the facelift, the brow lift is used to help patients gain a more youthful appearance, but is done on a younger group of people, generally between the ages of 40 and 60.

The brow lift is much less invasive then a complete facelift because only the muscles and fat of the brow area are worked on during the procedure. This makes recovery time much less than for a facelift, yet offers excellent results.

The Eyelid Lift

An eyelid lift, also known as blepharoplasty, is simply the removal of fatty deposits around the eyelids and removal of excess skin in the area. Fat deposits in your eyelids can make your eyes appear puffy or swollen. This added fat in the area can give you the appearance of being tired and older than you really are. In addition, fatty deposits in the eyelids themselves can cause vision issues.

In an eyelid lift procedure the excess fat is removed, the excess skin in the area is trimmed away, and the eyes are brought back to a much younger looking state. The procedure is not terribly invasive and the recovery time is very reasonable.

As you can see, there are vast differences between a facelift, a brow lift, and an eyelid lift surgical procedure. However, by working with a board certified plastic surgeon, you can determine the best course of action to help remove the signs of the passage of time on your face.

Porch Lifts – A Cost Effective Elevator

There are many types of medical aids available that can greatly improve a person’s mobility. Among them, the wheelchair is arguably the one that has most greatly benefited mankind. While the wheelchair is very versatile and many are made to be use off-road, there are still many obstacles that can hinder a wheelchairs movement. One of the most common and hardest obstacles for a person in a wheelchair to overcome is the staircase.

Some people who use manual wheelchairs are able to successfully descend stairs, but this can be dangerous and requires a high level of athletic aptitude. For most this is not possible and if you are in an electric wheelchair, then you can not safely do this, so will have to find another way around the stairs. For the stairs at your home, a vertical platform lift is often the best device to use, because it can allow you to safely use the stairs.

Vertical platform lifts are very similar to elevators. They are completely self contained units and are much less expensive than a residential elevator would be. A vertical platform lift can also be installed without too much home construction or structural changes to the home, but do require a strong base made out of wood or concrete. Most frequently you see these lifts on the front of a house, which is why they are commonly referred to as porch lifts.

Your average porch lift is capable of supporting well over 600 pounds. This means that you will rarely be limited to only allowing one person to ride on the lift or worry about exceeding the weight capacity. It is important to consider the weight of your mobility vehicle though, because many mobility scooters and electric wheelchairs weigh more than 200 pounds though, so you will want to consider the weight of the person who will be using the porch lift as well as the weight of their mobility vehicle.

Usually most porch lifts require some assembly, but some lifts come pre-assembled. One lift that comes completely pre-assembled is the AmeriGlide Hercules. It is shipped fully assembled and so it is only necessary to bolt the lift in place and plug it in. It supports an impressive 750 pounds, but can not lift as high as some of the other porch lifts on the market. It can span distances of up to 6 feet though, which is usually enough for most residential applications. Other lifts are available that can lift as high as 12 feet.

Porch lifts are very popular in commercial settings as well. They are often an easy an inexpensive way to make a building ADA compliant. Portable lifts are also very popular, especially in churches and schools. These models are not permanently installed and can be set up or moved in only a few minutes. Usually these lifts are not able to support as much weight or lift as high as other lifts though, but most support around 550 pounds.

The stairs can be hard to overcome if you use a wheelchair or mobility scooter, but if you choose to install a vertical platform lift, you will always be able to use them.

Chain-Plate Assemblies for Ship Models

One of the more interesting assemblies on a ship model build is the chain-plate assembly.

The chain-plate assemblies and deadeyes were part of the standing rigging of a sailing ship. These were for attaching the lower ends of the shrouds to the side of the ship. The shrouds were the ropes that steadied the masts and held them tightly into place. The ropes of the shrouds went through the holes in the deadeyes. This way they could be periodically tightened without letting up the strain on the masts. Conveniently enough, the shrouds provided a ladder of sorts, ratlines, enabling the sailors to climb to various levels of the masts.

Plates were used by all countries in the early 17th century. Chains then became prevalent until the mid-17th century after which some countries like Britain reverted back to plates. Chain-plates get their name from the old wooden ships that used to use tarred manila or hemp rope in conjunction with dead eyes and lanyards to tension the rigging. Chain-plates could be one of a number of strips of iron, chains, or a combination of iron links and straps. One dead eye would be attached to the end of the stay while the other dead eye would be shackled to a chain or a link which would be connected to a plate that was fastened to the wales (hull). This plate was called the chain.

By using chain-plates and other apparatus of rigging, sailboats are better able to support complex rigging systems and components. The weight of shrouds and other stays on a sailboat are spread across the hull, along the deck, and against framing components through the use of chain-plates and deadeyes. Several holes in the body of a chain-plate allow displacement among several bolts where the chain-plate is attached to the hull.

Construction:

A chain-plate is the thick iron plate bolted to the side of the ship to which the chains and deadeyes are attached. The chain plate and chains normally consisted of 5 parts, the lower deadeye and upper link, a middle link, a toe link, bolts, and a preventer link (or chain plate). The upper link surrounds the lower deadeye, the middle link connects to the upper link on the top and the toe link on the bottom. The toe link is connected to the preventer link. The preventer link was bolted to the outer planking.

The lower dead eye has to be stropped with metal. The length of the loop of the metal on the bottom depends on if you are using plates or chains. Also consider that the channel or chain-wales are used to keep the assembly some distance off of the hull so make sure they are wide enough on your ship model. Interestingly the mizzen mast channel was quite rudimentary and many times did not even exist. If you are using chains, the loop should be long enough to go well below the lower side of the channel and act as the first link in the chain. If you are using plates, the loop just needs to be long enough to hang just below the channel and to allow the plate to hook into it. The ship modeler can form the strop using wire and starting from the bottom of the dead eye and moving up. Start off by creating the loop then fit the wire around the dead eye ending at the top. Drill two small holes in the top of the dead eye and run the ends of the wire into the holes.

The lower deadeye can sit in a slot on the channel, directly on the channel or raised just above the channel depending on which era of ship model you are building. The first chain-plate should be perpendicular to the mast beginning from the bow end and moving towards the stern. The balance of chain-plates should be slightly angled as the assembly moves sternward.

The ship modeler has a number of options when it comes to constructing chain-plate assemblies. Like usual keep in mind the era and nationality of the ship model you are building. If you choose to use a solid piece of metal, regardless of the shape there needs to be at least two holes, one above the other, in order to fasten it onto the wales. And don’t forget to simulate caulking around the bolt holes using drawing ink. The upper middle and toe links can be the same size or vary in length. Often the toe link will be the shortest.

Pellet Stoves Economics 101

Before deciding to switch heating your from natural gas to pellets do your homework. Pellet stoves are great for area heating, but if you’re considering whole house heating it may not be as economical as you think.

The costs of installation depends on whether you purchase a new or used one. Newer stoves can cost upwards of $2,000 or more compared to a used one which you can easily find under $1000.00. They can be free standing or fireplace inserts, which means they are installed in the fireplace. There is also a version usually installed in the basement that can be operated as a furnace.

The customary method of heating a home is with natural gas. It does less labor intensive because you just light the burner, adjust the thermostat and you’re done. Depending on the setting the furnace turns on and off to regulate the temperature. However, pellet stoves require a bit more work. You’ll need to constantly monitor fuel to maintain the desired heat output. If you don’t add pellets at regular or scheduled intervals the fuel runs out.

Unless you’re retired or have lots of time on your hands, consider carefully the switch to a pellet stove. In addition time requirements, the average amount of pellets needed per season ranges between three to five tons. This can also add more time to your maintenance sessions.

Other considerations are the size of your home, the length and severity of the winter weather and the temperature you prefer inside the home.

From a cost perspective, a forty pound bag of pellets will cost about $3.50. Just like coal furnaces, it is usually more economical to buy pellets in bulk, which may reduce the cost to around $3.25 per bag. As an example of costs, let’s assume you use 4 tons of pellets during the heating season. That translates into 8,000 pounds of pellets at price of $3.50 per bag. The costs for heating would be about $700.00, not including delivery charges and taxes.

Depending on your choice of pellets this number could vary. To make it more accurate try to imitates the exact scenario as close as possible. Compare these costs to the prior years heating bill. Select the bills corresponding to late September through May. Peak heating months are generally late November, December, January and February. So include calculations for the other months as well.

This should give you a rough estimate of the cost difference between heating with pellets versus natural gas. You’ll have to add some specifics for your region, your lifestyle and factors like those mentioned above, but all we’re looking for is a rough estimate. Your utility company provides annual gas and electric usage comparisons, which may help in your estimations.

Now you look at side by side costs and you should be able to determine if this is a good investment. Be sure to consider installation costs, maintenance and other variables if you also heat, cook and clean with natural gas.

Pellet stoves are quite attractive. The ambiance and aesthetics may outweigh any calculations you’ve made about the economy of pellet stoves. That is an individual choice that you give weight to based on your preferences.

You could also restrict your pellet stove to heating certain zones in your home. But again consider the impact if you supplement with natural gas. Regardless of your calculations the most difficult ones to quantify are preference, emotion and desire to enhance your homes beauty and ambiance.

Yum Yum Chicken Recipe For West Bend Slow Cookers

West Bend is a solid company known for their quality slow cookers. I want to share with you a great chicken recipe for use in a West Bend slow cooker. So you like great tasting food? Me too and I love to cook things in a slow cooker and smell up the house all day long. So with no further ado here is a great recipe to try out.

1. Your gonna need a 6 ounce can of tomato paste

2. Grab 2 cloves of garlic minced

3. 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

4. 2 tablespoons of butter

5. Take 3 big boneless skinless chicken thighs and cut into small bite size chunks

6. Dice up an onion just one

7. 2 teaspoons of tandoori masala

8. A tablespoon of curry paste

9. 2 teaspoons of curry powder

10. 14 ounces of coconut milk

11. A cup of just plain old yogurt

12. A teaspoon of garam masala

Here is some help for you to get that all put together:

Go ahead and melt down that butter and vegetable oil right around a medium heat is what you want. Now throw in your onion that garlic clove you minced up and that yum yum chicken. You gonna cook that till you see the onion turning translucent should be between 7 to 10 11 minutes.

Now I want you to put everything else in there except for the coconut milk and yogurt. Take that great concoction you have there and drop it right down into your West Bend slow cooker. Now as your pouring that in go ahead and add that yogurt and milk. Now set that baby on high for 6 to 8 hours. You will know you are coming to the end when that chicken gets nice and tender. Now after all that work, go ahead sit down and taste you some of that Yum Yum slow cooked chicken.

Thanks for stopping by,

Clarence Jacks