What Are The Causes Of Anterior Pelvic Tilt?

Unfortunately, correction of anterior pelvic tilt has been way oversimplified. There are many factors that can contribute to this imbalanced position of the pelvis. Here are some of the less commonly discussed reasons for anterior pelvic tilt.

Imbalances in the pelvic muscles

Imbalances in the pelvic and hip muscles are the most well known causes of anterior pelvic tilt. Particularly to blame, is the balance between the muscles that flex the hip, including the quadriceps and psoas, and their opposing muscles, the gluteals, hamstrings, and “lower abdominals”.

Once the psoas becomes short and tight, normally due to imbalances in exercise program design or excessive time in seated postures, it pulls down on the front aspect of the pelvis. This allows a shortened position for the usually over-dominant quadriceps, thereby causing them to become short and tight as well.

By a neurological law called Sherrington’s Law, if one muscle becomes over-facilitated (activated), the muscle that performs the opposite action will weaken. So, in this situation, the glutes and hamstrings become lengthened and thus will test “weak”. Due to the forward rotation of the pelvis, the lower back becomes arched, therefore allowing the spinal erector muscles to shorten, although they rarely are actually “tight,” they present as facilitated.

This shortening of the lower back muscles, combined with the anterior rotation of the pelvis, puts a strain on the abdominal muscles, as their job is to assist with pulling the pelvis up and into posterior rotation. This leads to trigger point development in the lower abs, and eventually weakens them as they continue to be both lengthened and under tension.

Internal organ stress

All internal organs reflex neurological output into muscles. Think about it, when was the last time your liver hurt? When your organs are in distress, the reflexing muscles let you know. Any woman who has had cramps during her menstrual cycle can attest to that!

For example, if the adrenal glands (the glands that regulate stress hormones) are under stress, they can reflex pain to the lumber spine, particularly the small stabilizer muscles. Another example is inflammation of the gastro-intestinal tract due to such issues such as food allergy or intolerance. This inflammation can cause reflexive inhibition (shutdown) of the deep abdominal stabilizing muscles.

The Jaguar XF Motor Car

The Jaguar XF motor car has a modern feel and an air of superior craftsmanship. The centre console is high and wide so that it envelops driver and front passenger. A seven-inch colour touch-screen controls most cabin functions, reducing buttons to a single intuitive panel. The dashboard fascia is brushed aluminium and polished wood, flawlessly detailed. Dating back, all Jaguars have had a quality dashboard fascia. A nice touch is that the climate vents rotate out of sight when not in use. Seating surfaces are soft-grained, twin-stitched leather.

The XF employs a unique entry and start-up system. First, there is a keyless entry system that is available on select XF models. The system automatically activates when the Jaguar Smart Key that correlates with the car goes near the car. When the door is opened the car will activate its unlocking procedures. Inside, you will notice the red start button on the console is pulsing like a heartbeat. Press the button and the rotary shifter rises up into the palm of your hand, signaling you to select a drive option. The air vents rotate to open and the navigation system will automatically turn on after this is done.

The engine for the Jaguar XF is one of the most powerful engines among Jaguar cars. This engine is a 4.2L V8 engine. This features thirty two values and four overhead cams. Camshaft phasing can be manually controlled so that different responses can be used for different driving situations. Additional automatic shift modes are programmed for different driving conditions including Drive, Sport and Winter modes. Manual gear can be used as well.

In keeping with the rest of the car industry, computer aided design has been used in the design of the XF´s light, but high-strength new generation steel body shell that is torsionally stiff for safe, precise handling. ABS antilock brakes with traction and cornering controls reduce stopping distances without sacrificing stability. In addition a computer active technology suspension senses the contour of the road and adjusts the ride accordingly for optimum comfort. Two-stage Dynamic Stability Control manages grip when conditions vary. These active safeguards are complimented by two-stage driver and front passenger airbags, occupant position and weight sensing, front seat head restraints, and ´soft-landing´ technology in safety belt retractors.

There are all sorts of additional options that can be used for this car. A rear parking camera can be used for parking in tight areas with ease. The rear window has an available sunblind too. The car also uses Bluetooth and iPod integration as well.

How to Install Window Sun Shades

You can install window sun shades on your own or with a little help from a friend or relative. You don’t need to hire expensive professionals for a job you can do yourself. Even if you may not be the handiest person alive, installing your window shades will be a walk in the park. Just make sure you have everything ready. The shades, tools and an instruction guide.

These are just basic steps on how to install window shades, you can deviate from the instructions as long as you are positively sure that you know what you are doing.

1. Since you cannot do multiple installations at the same time, pick the window that you feel will be the easiest to install shades on. Make sure that window is also in a place where you can see the full effect of the sun shade. It is very much advisable that you do the installation during daytime. Specifically, on a sunny day. Performing the installation on a gloomy day will rob you of the opportunity to see your new sun shades in full effect.

2. Clean the area where you are going to install the window sun shades. It is also a good idea to prepare the work area with everything that you will need. This will save you a lot of time.

3. Get the measurements of the sun shades precisely because you will need to mark where the screws are going to be placed. Different shades mean different sizes, so be sure about the size. You don’t want to leave hole marks on your walls because of misplaced screws.

4. Place the brackets on the screws. The brackets will be the ones holding up the sun shades. They shouldn’t be jutting out straight out of the wall, they should be placed at an angle.

5. After placing the brackets for you shade, you can then screw in the actual sun shades.

Installing your on window sun shades will save a lot on professional fees. You will also get exactly what you want since you will not be barking orders at anyone. Just keep telling yourself and it will be a piece of cake.

Porch Caravan Awnings

Porch caravan awnings offer an affordable way to spend time in the outdoors with a little bit of comfort. They are designed for smaller caravans, and enable you to store any small items you may have brought on your holiday. If you visit any camp site you are certain to see a whole range of them protruding from all the caravans and vehicles. People tend to choose them for short stays and weekend breaks because they are one of the simplest awnings to set up.

You can have free standing or attached versions, and the only difference is that you can leave the free standing, or drive away awnings on the camp site. The most common place you will see them is on touring caravans, as static caravans tend to have larger and more secure awnings that are made to be left in place for weeks at a time.

Fitting a porch awning is pretty straightforward. The awning fits to the rail that runs on the side of the caravan and the hooks and locking system keeps it in place. Most retailers make this process as easy as can be with their own patented systems. The modern trend is for lightweight and breathable materials. The lightness is good for storage whilst in transit, and it should not take up too much room either. Having a breathable material is essential in hot weather, as it stops any condensation building up, and cools the inner area.

The good thing about most awnings is that they can be customised. You can buy a small porch awning and if your needs change then there is always the option of making it bigger. This way you do not have to spend money on a new awning, you just make your existing one better and more useable. The side panels are where the extensions will fit but make sure these extensions or extra rooms are from the same manufacturer. This will help you fit them properly. Some manufacturers do have universal fittings that can be used with a number of other designs. If you take this route then always make sure you ask the dealer if this can be done. It may save you a lot of time and hassle in the future.

Rock Carpet As Driveway Pavement

Rock carpet flooring is also used as driveway pavement. It sounds like an “oxymoron” but its not. It’s the latest flooring for driveways of all shapes sizes and dimensions. Rock carpet is nothing like your ordinary driveway, in that it’s slip and stain proof to reduce tire slippage and unwarranted “burn-outs”. It’s dent, scratch, and crack proof so there will be no damage from continued tire traffic nor lose gravel from your travels. It’s finished with a resinous epoxy polymer, which leaves it waterproof and free from the possibility of future water damage or set in stains. It also has a particular shine that is uncommon to driveways.

Rock carpets have been a big hit for the modern design conscious property owner. When you drive into up scale neighbor hoods you will typically find driveways made of black top or clean fresh looking concrete. When you drive past a property owned by a design conscious owner, you’ll see rock carpet. Its functionality and versatility is unmatched by that of any other flooring &/or pavement type because you can custom design its color, pattern, depth, and overall look. It has been referred to as “little rock carpet”, “round rock carpet”, or “quarry Carpet”.

It can be installed on any driveway regardless of its shape and angle. Rock carpet does cost more than that of regular concrete but it is well worth the expense up front due to its durability and lack of required maintenance. Regular concrete and or black top requires cleaning, repaving, or cracking correction while rock carpet requires none of those.

Its endless options yet newness to the public have made it a very hot topic for both residential and commercial property owners. Its name is derived from its composition, which is many thousands of tiny rocks and stones primarily from North/South America and New Zealand. Passing by a property with the revolutionary rock carpet in the driveway will definitely turn heads and is a definite consumers best buy.

How to Overcome Bridge Phobia

Gephyrophobia, also known as bridge phobia, is an unreasoning fear or dread of crossing bridges. There are several reasons for this phobia to exist. In many cases, this is a part of a larger group of phobias, such acrophobia, fear of heights, or a fear of the water. In other cases, this phobia stands alone.

Bridge phobia and most other phobias, often develop following a traumatic experience. For example, it was feared that a great number of cases of bridge phobia would be diagnosed following the collapse of the interstate overpasses in San Francisco a few years ago. Whenever people approach the object of their phobias, they begin to experience feelings of anxiety, sometimes leading to a full blown panic attack.

Treatment for bridge phobia consists of antidepressant or anti anxiety medications in conjunction with behavioral therapy to teach one coping mechanisms to employ whenever placed into a situation that would trigger the phobia. Another treatment is called desensitization. This works by putting yourself into the situation that triggers your anxiety a little at a time until it stops bothering you, then going a little further.

Some bridges are known to be built so high or so open that they trigger a panic attack in many of the people who attempt to drive or walk across them. Many of these bridges have become aware of the problem, at least the people who own the bridges, and offer a fee based service whereby someone will drive your car across the bridge for you.

Bridge phobia is not an uncommon problem. The good news is that there are ways to get over it without having to limit one’s self to one area because crossing a bridge is out of the question. Treatment, therapy, and behavior modification are all available methods of dealing with this or any other phobia.

Assembly Work at Home – Being a Work at Home Assembly Worker

There are many products you can choose to assemble with an assembly work at home jobs. For women who might be interested to use their sewing machines at home, they can choose products that would have them assemble products through sewing. Women who might be interested to assemble those glittering synthetic stones and gems can always opt to work in jewelry assembly work at home jobs. There are also assembly jobs for women, whose artistic ability in crafts can be made use of like in assembling of shell craft products, assembling of artificial flowers and other home beautifying craft products.

Assembly work at home products is listed in the directory together with the names of companies looking for people to assemble their products at home. For men who are interested to work at home assembling different kinds of products, there are many products that they can find in the list that would suit their ability. If they are interested in electronics, they can assemble electronic products. Actually, there are many kinds of electronic parts that are being farmed out by electronic companies to assembly work at home workers. There are parts that are used for cell phones. There are also electronic parts for assembly that is needed for FM and CD players. Electronic parts that are used in some other electronic applications are likewise distributed to other assembly work at home workers across the nation.

Most men would also go for toys assembly. Toys that are most preferred by men to assemble are those battery and mechanical toys. Assembly of these toys will make the worker use tools like screw drivers, pliers, cutters, soldering gun, lead solders, the use of simple electric meter is also used in testing and assembling of battery operated toys. For mechanical toys, like friction and winding powered toys, pliers, long nose and screw drivers are the most common tools used in its assembly.

The assembly of home items such as foldable ceiling fans, patio folding chairs and tables and other home fordable items can also be men while women can concern themselves in the assembly of other home products such as artificial flowers and home decors and even wall mounted plastic decorative vases. These various products that will be worked on by assembly work at home workers are all subject to market demands. Thus, companies are always looking for additional assembly work at home workers once Christmas season comes near because of the increased sales of their products, especially products that are closely related to the holiday season like toys and electronic products for gift giving purposes.

Some companies, in order to encourage assembly work at home workers to increase production would go to the extent of giving some sort of bonus to those who may be able to reach a particular target of assembled products for a particular period of time. Others may choose to give some form of material benefits while others may increase the rate they pay the workers after some level of targeted volume have been reached. Each company has its own system when it comes to encouraging its assembly work at home workers to produce more assembled products.

LCD TV – To Mount Or Not to Mount?

As technology improves through the years, many features have been developed to improve your home theater system. With the ever-growing competition in the market among the manufacturers, prices of these LCD televisions are continuing to go down. This has given opportunity for many people even average earners, to experience the technology of LCD TV.

With a flat screen television, you now have the option to mount in to the wall. This feature was not available in the old CRT televisions. Just imagine mounting your CRT to a wall. That does not look right. It actually looks odd. While with plasma and LCD televisions, you can simply mount them anywhere in your house. As long as there is a flat surface, then you are good to go. You can actually place your LCD TV on the ceiling and just lay in bed as you watch your favorite shows. It will be really cool. Just make sure to mount your TV properly. You do not want it to be falling on you after all.

There are many different sizes and models of flat screens in the market today. Wall mounts area also available in many numbers in order to match the requirement of the different LCD models. You have an endless variety of wall mounts to choose from and you will definitely have no problem in looking for that safe mount to use for your large television. Determine the best tool that will keep your LCD television mounted. Do some research on what kind of mount your TV needs to use. You must also know whether you wall has the capacity to support the size and weight of your LCD TV mount.

After buying all the things that you need, you can try installing it yourself. Or better yet, call a professional to do it for you. It can be scary if you do not have the right tools to mount your television. if ever you do want to try to do it yourself, make sure that you have everything that you need, and you know everything that there is to know. Otherwise, get some help or you might end up regretting what you did. You certainly do not want your brand new flat screen to fall off.

When you have installed your TV, it is now time to sit back, relax, and enjoy.

The Hammer – Tips To Carefully Select The Most Common Household Tool Before Any Home Project

Hammers are handy little tools. Every house has at least one hammer. The hammer is the most common household tool. The most common type of hammers for home use is the nail hammer or a ball peen hammer These hammers are used for basic home maintenance.

You can select a specific hammer for a specific job. If you select the wrong hammer, you can really make a mess of things. For a typical household the weight of the hammer should be about 16 pounds.

Sixteen pounds is the size that most adults can handle with no problem. When you go to purchase

A hammer pick it up and practice hitting something so you can see whether the weight and the grip

are the right choice for you.

This size and weight of the hammer is important. Depending on the job you are doing, ask the

expert in the store to suggest a correct size and weight for the job. If the hammer is too heavy,

you may bend the nails in the wall or worst put a hole in drywall. If the hammer is too light, you will

have to work too hard to complete your task. You will have to hit the object more times than necessary. This may cause you to destroy the project.

Look for a hammer that has a rubber grip for comfort. A good hammer is well-balanced and well-made. A hammer should last for several years. Do not buy the cheapest hammer in the hardware store and make sure to pick the hammer up and kind of get a feel for it. No matter what you use the hammer for you need to always have control.

A really inexpensive hammer may cost you more in the long run. Get the best hammer that matches the project. You don’t want the hammer to come apart when you are pounding loose nails in floorboards, or putting up a set of shelves. The cost and other considerations for purchasing this common everyday tool are always your choice. But remember you need to purchase a quality instrument.

Like most tools for home maintenance, there is A variety of styles to choose from, but a hammer

is a personal tool that needs to fit you. This is not One of those one size fits all instruments.

There is a hammer for every job that you can imagine. There are hammers so specific that you can choose a special hammer for any job you are doing. There is a tack hammer, mallet hammer, hand drilling hammer, sledge hammer or soft face hammer and more.

A hammer has to be strong and sturdy for safety considerations. The strength of the hammer is

required to exert enough weight and strength to drive the nail into its intended target easily and quickly without breaking or coming apart. A loose hammer is dangerous and in some instances hammers have been known to cause great bodily injury. Professional carpenters and construction workers use a several different types of hammers. A professional carpenter may use a claw hammer while a carpet installer uses a tack hammer to lay carpet. Professionals use a different hammer for every job.

Every home should have the tools needed to make small household chores easy, A hammer is the basic tool and should be part of the household’s toolkit.

Glass Mosaic Tile Art – Is Weldbond Really the Best Adhesive For Mosaics?

Making wonderful glass mosaic tile art is easy! Let me show you how.

Which type of adhesive is best for mosaics? It depends on your base material, mosaic method, whether you’re working horizontally on a table or vertically on a wall, whether your mosaic is exposed to moisture, and personal preference.

Many websites and articles say Weldbond is the best adhesive for indoor mosaics and that it’s the preferred glue of professional mosaic artists worldwide. I’m the kind of guy who likes to ask, “Why?” I’m compelled to dig deeper, so my question is: What makes Weldbond so much better than other polyvinyl acetate (PVA) glues (commonly known as white glue), such as Elmer’s Glue All? If you’re like me, you wonder, “Why do so many mosaic websites say Weldbond is the best mosaic glue, but none of them fully explain what makes it better or why it’s better?” I don’t know, maybe one mosaic artist heard something about Weldbond and regurgitated it to another artist without knowing the chemical facts. Maybe a mosaic supply salesman makes a bigger profit selling a 4-ounce bottle of Weldbond for $4.50 than a 7.5-ounce bottle of Elmer’s for only $1.50.

Let’s think about it. White glues are made from PVA emulsions. All basic PVA emulsions have the same properties: water-based, odorless, easy clean-up, colorless, relatively non-toxic, water resistant (not waterproof), and not too heat resistant compared to other adhesives.

Varieties of PVA glues can be developed by adding small amounts of materials to improve specific characteristics. For example, simple clay can improve the glue’s high temperature strength. However, the differences in varieties aren’t that great because if too much extra material is added, the glue’s adhering properties unacceptably weaken.

I tried to determine the chemical properties of Weldbond and Elmer’s, but I couldn’t find anything that fully defines the ingredients. The Elmer’s website says their ingredients are proprietary, so I assume Weldbond’s ingredients are also proprietary. I also couldn’t find independent laboratory test results that define Weldbond’s shear strength, adhesion strength, and cohesion strength. (The key word is “independent.”) Same for Elmer’s. Therefore, I couldn’t compare the two to determine if one truly is stronger than the other in shear, adhesion, and cohesion strength.

For our indoor mosaic applications, do we really care if one brand is stronger than the other by a ga-zillion Pascals? (A Pascal is a unit of pressure equivalent to one Newton per square-meter.) I don’t think so. For example, do we care that one brand might support the weight of two elephants while the other brand might support only one? Of course not. All we care about is if the glue can effectively hold a small piece of glass tessera that weighs less than an ounce to our base material without extreme external forces acting on it (e.g., forces such as walking on it or beating it with a hammer). So, in terms of strength, how do we choose whether to use Weldbond or Elmer’s for our simple, light-duty, indoor, mosaic art application? The answer is easy–perform our own unscientific experiment.

Read the eBook to see the details and results of my experiment and learn which brand performed better. You’ll be surprised at the results. The eBook also explains more about PVA glue, so you’ll understand whether it’s possible to manufacture one brand significantly better than another brand. So, the question still remains: For our indoor glass mosaic art, is it worth it to spend $4.50 for a 4-ounce bottle of Weldbond instead of $1.50 for a 7.5-ounce bottle of Elmer’s? Read the eBook!

Remember, making mosaic art is easy. You can do it. Yes, you can!

How to Lay Seamless Travertine Marble Tile Successfully

Laying a travertine marble tile floor seamlessly (i.e., without grout) is a skill that you can easily develop. Only a little bit of knowledge, a few tools, patience, and diligence are required to complete this job successfully.

There is no need to be intimated by this type of project. After all, if the ancient Romans and Greeks were able to do it, why can’t you?

There are only a few things besides the tile that are required to complete this kind of home improvement job: a thin-set mortar, notched trowel, a level, and a soft rubber mallet. The difficulty level of this do-it-yourself project is considered to be medium or moderate; however,that is due to the fact that some tiles may need to be reset in order to ensure a level plane across the floor.

It Is All In the Preparation

Preparation is key to a seamless installation of this type of natural stone. Ninety-nine percent of all successful home improvement jobs start with proper prepping of the working surface. For any surface–whether it be a floor, countertop, or wall, make the working area as level as possible before you do anything else. Check your work with a level prior to any travertine tile installation.

Application of Thinset On Flooring – Kick It Up A Notch

Working from the middle of the room, use the trowel’s notched edge to apply an even coat of thinset mortar to the flooring surface, spreading it evenly in the area where you will set the travertine. Take your time when doing this in order to avoid ridges and/or air pockets which may cause the tile to settle improperly.

Application of Thinset On Back of Tile – Flat Is Beautiful

Now it is time to use the trowel’s flat side to apply a skim coat thinset to the back of the travertine marble tile. Ensure it is evenly distributed throughout, taking care to coat the edges of the tile.

Apply the Tile With Gentle But Firm Persuasion

Set the tile in place on the floor, applying pressure, and moving it back and forth in all directions to form a good bond and to eliminate any unforeseen trapped air bubbles/pockets.

Then it is time to set the second tile next to the first, lining up the corners, and moving that tile back and forth as you did the first one.

Make sure the tiles are the same height. Using a soft rubber mallet, tap gently on the second travertine marble tile until it abuts the first tile. There should be a tight fit with no gaps.

Keep a Level Head and Get a Level Floor

Lay a level on the tile floor to ensure that tiles are flat and flush. If a tile is too low, remove the tile and add more thinset on the floor. If the opposite is true and the tile is too high, pry up the travertine and remove excessive thinset. Either way, there is a remedy so you can get a level floor by keeping a level head and doing what needs to be done to get the perfectly seamless travertine marble tile floor.

Exploring a Marquise Cut Ring

A marquise cut ring possesses one of the oldest cuts in the world. Also referred to as the Navette cut, the marquise cut did not come into being if not for the French king Louis XV. Perhaps he loved his mistress so much, Marchioness Madame de Pompadour, that he commissioned the jeweler of his court to cut a certain piece of diamond according to her smile.

This is the main reason why the marquise cut has an elongated look. It is an excellent cut for longer gemstones such as diamonds as well as for those that are round or oval shaped.

The Unique Look

One of the distinct characteristics of the marquise cut is its look. You will hardly find any other cut that is elongated. Moreover, the oval- or round-shaped diamonds or other gemstones are cut in a manner that only their tips appear pointed or edged.

Looking at the marquise cut, one may think that it is pretty easy to do. The truth is it is not. This is because there is a particular aspect ratio that has to be followed. It is 1:2. This means that the width is 50 percent longer than its length. The cutter also has to make sure that the pointed ends would not easily break. Otherwise, it will surely reduce the value of the gemstone.

There is also the challenge of taking as little as possible from the gemstone. In the case of the diamond, for example, he or she needs to ensure that much of the stone is being retained.

On the part of the owner, it is important that you have a gemstone with the least amount of inclusion as possible. Keep in mind that your stone will surely be highlighted once it is already set on the ring. Any kind of flaw will most likely become very visible or noticeable.

You should also be decided on whether the bow tie effect is fine with you or not. The effect happens the ideal ratio changes. Because the cut does not necessarily follow the normal patterns of the stone, they create a shadow that appears like a bow tie in the middle of the gemstone. Others call this a flaw, while many consider it as a unique attribute of the cut.

If you are in a tight budget, you can surely opt for the marquise cut, which has the ability to improve a stone’s brilliance.

4 Essential Skills Every Painter Should Have

If you want to paint, do you need talent or can it be learned? Painting is a skill, and like any skill, it can be learned and developed over time. Talent is always a good thing, of course, but it alone won’t make you a new Picasso. The only proven way to improve a skill, and remember – painting is a skill, is through practice. In this article we will take a look at the essential skills that every painter should have.

#1 Colors – Understanding color and color combinations is a basic step in becoming a good painter. Mixing colors can be quite challenging, especially if you’re a beginner. You should understand the basic color relationships and learn how to mix them properly. With only ten to twelve basic colors you can actually mix virtually any color you wish.

#2 Brushwork techniques – for every beginner painter, it’s absolutely essential to master the basic brushwork techniques. You should learn how to hold the brush (and also how not to hold it), how to load the paint correctly, various stroke techniques, how to use different techniques for different effects, and more. This is very important.

#3 Understanding composition – good composition is crucial to creating good paintings. When composition is done badly, people notice it. Maybe not directly, but they notice something out of place, something that makes the painting feel awkward. That is why it’s extremely important to know how to arrange elements in your painting, how to create symmetry, balance, how to place the focal point, and more.

#4 Understanding perspective – if you want to paint believable three-dimensional objects, you have to understand perspective. From how to create distance and depth in your paintings, to what is the difference between one-point, two-point, and three-point perspective, what is a vanishing point and how to create a horizon line. Perspective is very important.

These are the four basic skills that every painter should develop. Taking the time to learn them will unquestionably push your painting abilities to a much higher level. Just remember, practice and patience makes perfect.

Make Sure You Install Your Spade Terminals Properly

Spade terminals are a great way of terminating your cables: not only do they make hooking and unhooking a connection much easier, they also help to protect the delicate copper wire found in speaker cables from corrosion which can seriously impact the overall performance of your system, so it’s little wonder that spade terminals are so widely used.

If you buy your speaker cable with the terminals already installed then you don’t have too much to worry about, although it would be worth while just to check that the manufacturer has installed them properly. However, if you buy your spade terminals separately and terminate your speaker cable yourself then it is really important that you install your terminals properly.

In the best case scenario a badly installed spade terminal could degrade the signal and there would be a noticeable drop in sound quality; but in the worst case scenario a badly installed spade could cause your system to short out, resulting in irreparable damage being done to the sensitive electronics inside your audio components.

There are so many different designs and styles of spade terminal that it would be impossible to discuss them all, but most of the higher end terminals feature some kind of insulated jacket, or sleeve, that covers the area where the bare speaker cable is actually attached to the spade lug. If you are using a spade like this then be sure that there are no stray wires sticking out and then carefully fit the insulated jacket.

However, if your spade terminals do not feature this jacket, then it’s up to you to ensure the connection between cable and spade lug is properly insulated. Not only will this help to protect your audio equipment, it will also ensure that you get the very best levels of performance out of your system, and as an added bonus it also makes the connection look much neater and more professional which is important for people who have their audio components on display. Don’t worry; fitting your own insulation jacket to a spade terminal is actually a much easier job than it sounds!

First of all you will need some shrink wrap tubing. You should be able to get this from most audio or hardware stores; you can even pick it up in most car maintenance stores too. When this tubing is heated it shrinks and forms a neat jacket that helps to insulate the connection between the speaker cable and spade lug; it will also help to keep the connection securely fastened.

Fit the spade terminal onto the end of the speaker cable as per the instructions and then cut a length of the shrink wrap tuning so that it is long enough to cover the joint. Slide the tubing over the top of the joint, leaving just enough room to slightly cover the actual spade lug.

Use a heat gun to shrink the tubing onto the cable to create a secure seal. Remember you are trying to get the tubing to cover as much of the exposed metal as possible in order to minimize the risk of shorting out your whole system; making sure most of the exposed metal is covered in shrink wrap also helps to reduce the risk of corrosion. If you have never used shrink wrap tubing or a heat gun before then it’s a good idea to have a few practice attempts before you actually do this for real since it can be hard to judge how far the tubing will shrink, which can lead to some messy or insecure seals.

Once you are finished you can use a sharp knife to trim away any excess shrink wrap to leave you with a professional looking result. Now repeat this process for the rest of your spade terminals and then sit back and enjoy the peace of mind that your home entertainment system is fully protected.

How to Choose a Long Lasting Shovel Or Spade

Most people, myself included, buy a $10 shovel at a big home improvement store. Six months later, the shove is dull, rusted and digging becomes a chore. Selecting the right shovel can make your Garden Chores almost fun. Weather you are a home improvement expert, handyman, master gardener, or professional, take some time, do some research, buy the best and buy once.

First some Definitions- this is serous business after all.

Shovel: Tool used for digging in medium to soft ground. or soil, sand, gravel, clay or small rock moving.

Spade: Tool used for digging in harder ground. Because it is narrower than a shovel it is not as good at moving or transferring materials as a shovel.

Blade: This is the metal end of the tool. Does the cutting or moving. Narrower the blade the tougher digging conditions the shovel can handle, but the more “trips” you will have to make. Cheap shovels are stamped out of sheet metal. Good shovels are welded steel.

Step: Your foot goes here. A great shovel has a large step, as most of us are gardening in crocs, clogs, flip flops or even barefoot.

Shaft: This is the bar that connects the handle (if there is one) to the blade and step.

Handle: There are two kinds of handles on most shovels. The first is as simple as a rubber or plastic grip around the shaft. The second is a bar perpendicular to the shaft. Some are T shaped but the best shovels and spades have the handle on a wishbone (D-Handle) that connects them to the shovel or spade shaft.

Coating: This is what keeps the shovel from rusting and keeps your shovel or spade looking great. Remember that digging is a very abrasive activity and coatings will not last forever. Paint and clear coat temporary, Powder coating last as long long time.

Warranty: This is one of the most important parts. Will the manufacturer stand behind their product? If not, go elsewhere.

There are only about 4 shovel types that you are likely to need:

Long Handle Digging Shovel All around shovel, go anywhere, do anything. Every one needs this type of shovel in their Garden Shed. The pointed tip cuts into medium hard to soft ground and makes quick work of even the most stubborn roots. If you only buy one shovel- get this one. The straight shaft and handle are great for digging without having to uses your feet. The important things to look for in this shovel is a strong all metal shaft welded to the step and the blade. A large step is a must have in this type of shovel. As will all shovels- unless is stainless($$$) it must be powder coated. Paint or clear coatings are not enough! While it seems counter intuitive, the heaver a shovel, the easier it is to use if you are digging.

D-Handle Digging Shovel Similar to the Long Handle Digging Shovel, This shovels D- Handle is best when you have to dig a hole then transfer or throw it. Digging, preparing plant holes, and removing sod and soil for a walkway or garden bed makes this kind of shove shine. As with Long Handle Digging shovel, durable coating, metal shaft, strong welds and a large step are crucial.

D-Handle Transfer Style Garden Shovel This is the square bladed transfer shove that has probably frustrated you in the past. It has a very specific task and is not a digging shove in most soils. Use it to move already loosened soil, dirt, compost, sand or pea gravel and you will fall in love with the the Transfer Garden Shovel. Because this type of shovel is not really a digging shovel, you will likely want a D-Handle and not a Straight shaft handle. A long, square-edge, flat blade makes this shovel ideal for fine, straight edging, cutting through soil and grass. A large step is not really important here but a durable coating and metal shafts are always a good idea. This is the only shovel where a lot of weight is not a really good thing.

D-Handle Transplanting Spade Often referred to as a sharpshooter shovel, this work horse of a is ideal for deep, precise digging, transplanting, and loosening very hard soil and packed or crushed rock. Big step, strong welds, metal shaft and a thick blade are very important with this shovel. When the going gets tough, the tough get this shovel. Strangely, this shovel only comes in a D-Handle but it seems to work.

Recap of the Most important features:

Metal shaft

Powdered Coated shaft, blade and step

Welded steel not stamped sheet metal

Steel not stainless steel- too expensive and not worth it.

D-handle if you are going to be moving material or straight shaft if you are digging- unless it’s a sharp shooter.

Big step unless it is a transfer shovel.

Lastly, a great Warranty. Most shovel manufactures worth their salt, will replace a broken shovel free of charge.