Advantages and Applications of Epoxy Flooring in an Industrial Set Up

Flooring is an important part of interior design. In a factory set up where flooring is subject to a lot of wear and tear, choice of the correct flooring is crucial, since it is a part of the initial investment and is often spread across a large area. One of the most widely used flooring options for this niche is epoxy flooring. This choice revolves around the facts that epoxy flooring is highly durable, requires minimum maintenance and is environmentally friendly. It is hence, the recommended flooring option for both residential buildings and industries. The epoxy floor coatings are usually applied over concrete floors to provide best binding results and aesthetically attractive surfaces.

The term epoxy refers to a form of catalysed plastic. It is basically a resin and is typically a compound of bis phenol-A and a polyamine. Epoxy resin was invented in the 1930s by a Swiss scientist, Dr. Pierre Castam. Generally the polyamines are used to harden the surface or the floor. A catalytic reaction occurs when the resin and hardener come in contact with each other. They bind to each other and create a chemical crosslink that is high in strength. This binding technology is the reason why epoxies can be recoated in a short period of time.

There are three main types of epoxy for flooring. They are 100% solid epoxy, solvent-based and water-based epoxies. Of these three, 100% solids epoxy is the best choice as it performs the best. Water and solvent based epoxies are considered user friendly, but this type of epoxies are not as durable and cannot be applied as a thick coating like the 100% solids ones. The solid epoxies capably meet all the stringent requirements that are to be complied when designing an industrial floor. It offers strong adhesion, excellent chemical resistance and toughness. Further, epoxy floors in general are abrasion resistant, waterproof, heat resistant, and resistant to the action of corrosives like acids and alkalis. They are non-toxic when dry and hence, can be used safely even in residential projects and children play areas.

The practical application on a floor surface takes the following steps. The compounds are mixed in a proper ratio and are applied to the floor to a minimum depth of 2 mm. Usually, an epoxy flooring requires at least seven coats to finally create a glossy and finished surface. It includes a base coat, one or two epoxy coats, a broadcast coat of coloured sand or flakes and a top coat.

The main advantage of epoxy flooring is the ease of maintenance. Concrete floors need appropriate protection and an epoxy floor is the best choice to offer protection against abrasion, chemical attack and thermal shock, which are commonly experienced in an industrial set up. With the advent of technology, further innovations are expected and it is only a matter of time before epoxy flooring solutions find wide application in the residential segment as well.

Pick Your Choice of Acrylic Awards

Whether it is to convey your appreciation for the best performer of the year or to reward the efforts of the best branch of your company across the country, acrylic awards are a great choice to underline the occasion. These awards are easy to customize and order and have all the charm and magnetism to spark the enthusiasm of your employees or the participants of a competition. Awards can be manufactured in a wide array of designs and colors, from understated and subtly elegant awards for gifting as mementos to the top brass of a company or rewarding the top executives of a brand or colorful and energetic with a lot of vibrancy to gift to winners in various competitions organized for brand and social cause awareness.

Acrylic awards can be simple rectangular or circular slabs with the name, company logo and the year etched on them. They can also be sophisticated with modern design with engraved interior carvings or printed messages which shine in multiple hues depending on the colors outside. These awards can also be 2 dimensional with just a plate which is quite inexpensive and can be used for intra corporate competitions or 3 dimensional elegant designs with carved stars, leaves or 3 dimensional logo of the companies. Side plaques can also be attached to the awards to carry specific messages or to etch the name of sponsors or brands. While colored acrylic awards with small beveled jewels could cost as less as 25 dollars, executive mementos or corporate awards for excellence would need something more sophisticated and elegant.

Bring Life to Your Residence With Concrete Sealing

Nothing in this world is resistant from the maturing and meltdown procedure.All things on this world is prior to worsen and fade in their due span of time. Even human bodies experience deterioration procedures every single day. It is unavoidable. If the bodily methods go out of balance, we immediately become in poor health, get unwanted injuries – from a regular fever to feared disorders including cancer. This is the reason people these days receive a great diversity of vitamins and minerals – vitamins from A to Z. They take these supplements because they want to prevent and avoid diseases. As expected, it really is a good plan, is not it? Great thing we have ourselves to shield ourselves. We're able to seal our own selves from ailments. We can easily take natural vitamins, and carry out some exercises to make our physical structures fit and reduce the deterioration process. We have now the ability to help ourselves and our health keep going longer. Then again, does your concrete floor have that sort of potential? Obviously, no human being on his sane mind will answer yes. A concrete floor can not do a concrete sealing or cleaning all alone by itself.

It is advisable to avoid injuries than to have to deal with scars. As we are going through intense high temperature from the sunlight or increased bad weather, we could normally seal ourselves using an umbrella or even a jacket. head off to somewhere where we can hide for shelter from such weather conditions. Alternately, we can choose to go to a location that will keep us protected and comfortable from extreme climate occurrences. Once again, concrete floors does not have the ability to do that. A concrete floor does not have life that is why we are at this point to allow it some life. Now exactly how can we give them life?

Before that, why do not we present these floors a little life and look at them from a specific position that considers them as if they are inhaling components? For several years, they had been there in the house, damaged by the typical marring and aggressive climate. They must have already taken in degrees of Celsius, millions of footsteps, as well as a zillion drops of water from the sky. The occurrence of deterioration and wearing away is constantly happening. You will see evidence which include all of those fractures, discolorations from many random spills or oxidation and really gross spills that have remained there for ages. Concrete floors are typically discolored simply because they can easily take in spills like gas or oil.

With the utilization of effective concrete sealing, you can expect the decline system to slow down; exactly the method in which extra nutrients can provide your body with needed nutrition. And likewise concrete cleaning – similar to an exercise can do magic for you. The securing helps make your concrete simpler to clean up, and helps prevent it from becoming slick, thus ensuring the protection of your daily walk around your house. Likewise, it has the ability to make your flooring endure abrasion and constant abuse, rendering it durable enough to last a long time. It will help to make its surface area shine way better. Also, this kind of plugging can help to eliminate the volume of stain absorption. You will unquestionably get enthralled when you see how beautiful it looks after the sealing come about, and exactly how simple it really is to get it cleaned and maintained.

A group of master sealers utilizing the know-how, proficiency, and machines can close off your concrete the ideal and productive technique. They will really accomplish concrete sealing and cleaning the way it needs to be done. They are your helping hand. Yet again, take care of these concrete as if they are a living thing. Take good care of those. Your concrete floors and flooring surfaces are the primary materials that your household and your acquaintances will quickly check out after they enter your household. It tends to make the fundamental first or second impression. But it is not necessarily the impression that counts in the end; it will be the life that you afforded to that non-living concrete floor – bringing them to life. Even so, it is not the visual appearance that counts in the end; it is the durability and the sturdiness that you offer your concrete floors as strength is their greatest tool against scratching and tough conditions.

Choosing Flooring For An Indoor Exercise Room

More and more people are converting existing space into a workout room, rather than paying for a fitness center membership. After all, if you work during the day, have to run kids to their practices and clubs, you probably do not feel like spending time traveling back and forth to the fitness center. Also, by having a workout space at home, you can exercise anytime you choose.

If you're looking at converting existing space into a workout room, flooring will be the main consideration. You can probably leave the walls and ceiling the same, but you need floating that is durable, yet easy on the joints.

The best option for indoor workout space is interlocking rubber tiles. If you have not seen these, there are a lot of great options. You can choose one solid color, choose a checkered pattern with two colors, or you can choose a different color for each part of the room. You can design your floor anyway you like.

Why go with interlocking tiles? The main reason is it's shock absorbent. If you're planning on doing jumping jacks, floor exercises or running in place, your body will appreciate the extra cushioning of the floor. The tiles also have an excellent slip resistance quality which is very important for any workout area. Rubber will also absorb sound effectively. While you're working away on the treadmill or elliptical, your family will still be able to hear the TV in the next room.

These are also very durable. If you have heavy exercise equipment, it will not damage the floor. You can move equipment around and the floor will stay put. A rubber floor will easily last 15 years and depending on the quality, it could last as many as 30 years. If you tend to sweat a lot while working out, rubber tiles are easy to clean. Just grab a damp cloth and wipe it down.

Interlocking rubber tiles are easy to install. You and a buddy can easily install the floor in one weekend. If the existing floor is concrete, wooden or vinyl, you can place the rubber tiles on top of the existing floor. If the floor has a wall-to-wall carpet, you'll want to rip the carpet out, place a subflooring such as plywood, and then install the rubber tiles.

Rubber flooring is fairly inexpensive. If at some point you decide to use the room for something else, the rubber tiles can be used in a different area, such as your garage or laundry area.

Stainless Steel Jewelry – Fashionable and Inexpensive

Though there are many different types of material used in the manufacturing of jewelry one particular material stands out, stainless steel. This new wave of jewelry has become more popular over the last several years. The quality of this shiny metal is evident in its durability to stand the test of time. This metal over the years will maintain its look and eye appeal because of its remarkable resistance to corrosion and rust. This stain resistant alloy metal is also bright because it reflects light. It is basically made up of more than 50% Iron and more than 10.5% Chromium.

Buying stainless steel jewelry is an economical way to accessorize one’s wardrobe. Men’s and ladies’ rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings are all part of the wide array of items created in this fashionable jewelry. The high polished shine of the silver metal gives it the look of white gold but comparatively costs pennies on the dollar as to the cost of gold. Using today’s technology, gold plating and different colored dyes are used in producing some very artistically designed pieces.

Another material that is used in manufacturing Stainless Steel jewelry is Ruber derived from rubber compounds. Ruber (pronounced Ru-bur) is very durable and attractive. It contains Carbon Fibers that are lighter than aluminum and stronger than steel. The black contrast to the silvery shiny metal compliments its overall desirability. Though it is fairly new to the U.S. its popularity in Europe has grown over the past 10 years.

Simple Sutures – The Process of Stapling, Suturing and Stitching

Accidents can happen at any time of the night and day. And if you or your child gets hurt, some wounds may be too big to heal on their own and you may need to visit the emergency care unit in order to get simple sutures that will help speed up the healing process. Suturing a wound can make a huge difference to the healing process since it helps to stop the bleeding and allows the skin to grow back and cover the wounded area. Sutures and staples are also used after surgical procedures in order to heal the incisions.

Types of Healing Techniques

Sutures and Stitches: Even though the two terms sound the same, they both have a slightly different meaning. Sutures are the materials that are used by doctors when closing the wound while ‘stitches’ refer to the actual procedure of closing the wound. Some strings are soluble while some strings do not dissolve naturally. Soluble string can be made from various materials including parts of animals. Non-soluble materials can be made from nylon, silk, etc. Non-soluble stitches are often used for wounds that may require more time to heal and in cases where there is a risk of the string reacting with certain kinds of chemicals.

Staples: Staples are often made from stainless steel or titanium. These staples are usually used in cases when it is difficult to suture the wounded area. These difficult areas can be clamped together with the help of a staple. Staples come in different shapes and round staples are often used to stitch two organs together. Stapling is more convenient when there are two people to do the job since it requires one person to hold the skin together while the other staples the area. Staples can also be easily removed with a remover tool.

Tips for Recovery

If you are recovering from a wound that has been sutured or stapled, you should keep a check on the stitches and make sure they come out at the appropriate time so that the wound has time to heal properly but the stitches have not been kept for too long so as to leave a scar. On an average, stitches on the face remain for four or five days, stitches on the stomach usually last for about a week and stitches on the back take about two weeks.

Different doctors will have different styles of closing up a wound. Even if they suture the wound, it is likely that they will use a different kind of stitch from another doctor. As long as the wound heals properly, there is no need to worry.

Reclaimed Flooring – Preserve the Ecosystem

Flooring is a crucial part of making a house habitable. In today's environment-conscious society, eco-friendly features at home can prove to be an excellent selling point. Installing reclaimed flooring is an inexpensive way to do just that, as well as adding elegance and an old-time charm to your home.

There are dealers who salvage wood from demolition sites, vintage homes, dismounted warehouses, lumber mills and wooden bridges to make a variety of floor coverings. Wood from such old buildings can yield quality boards of impressive sizes. However, the availability of specific wood type depends on the dealer's ability to locate it and therefore, supply can fluctuate. Purchase such wood only from a reputed online source to ensure that you get the best deal.

Why Reclaimed Flooring?

Wood floors have been proven by many doctors as a healthy choice and as a cure for spinal and joint pain; as wood is easier on feet and legs. Reclaimed flooring can provide all the benefits of wood, including saving energy and your money on a Heating, Ventilation and Air Condition (HVAC) system.

Over the last few decades, people have realized that natural resources are not inexhaustible, therefore over-exploitation would definitely imperil human survival. With this global environment consciousness, preservation and conservation have become the most important concepts globally. With such concerns in mind, it only logical that more and more homeowners are opting for reclaimed wood for flooring, furniture and other construction purposes.

Reclaimed Flooring: Advantages

Reclaimed flooring has its own set of advantages. It is made from wood that has been logged earlier; therefore it has a tighter grain structure as well as density because of which it is more durable than new wood. Also, this wood possesses visual richness due to its natural weathering. A old piece of wood's character and sheen can not be duplicated by new wood.

If you want to improve your leadership in Energy and Environmental Design or LEED rating and prove that you too are involved in the green building movement, switch to reclaimed wood. Purchasing from, and getting the wood flooring installed by an online provider is more convenient than going to the market to select wood.

A company which has, till date, lived up to all the expectations of its customers is Cancun Wood Floors, Inc. To know more about this provider, visit

A Beautifully Painted Business Leads To An Impressed Customer

The color of your business may seem like a minute detail, but it can actually affect how your customers respond to your company. You want your business to be warm and inviting, while also creating the mood that represents your mission. Maybe you own a romantic restaurant. You may want a darker, more luxurious color scheme that will appeal to those who are visiting on a date night.

Creating a theme that represents your company can be both fun and stressful. One of the best ways to get any remodel work done on your business is to work with a commercial painting company. A company will help you to choose a color scheme that works best for you. They may also have more knowledge on which colors evoke which responses in your clients.

A great benefit of working with a company is that you will not have to worry about completing the work yourself. As a business owner, you have a ton of daily duties on your plate. Repainting your company is not always able to be done or in your realm of abilities. The knowledgeable employees at a company can do the work quickly and perfectly.

When choosing a company to handle your paintwork, it is important that you choose someone who will work with your schedule and budget. If you are a running business and not just starting, it may not be realistic for you to shut down during remodel work. You will want a company that can complete the project after your business hours. This may need them to work later in the evenings or on weekends.

Also, it is important that the company you choose will work hard to protect all of your furniture and floors in your business. If you are not doing a complete remodel, you will want them to be diligent when it comes to keeping paint off of your items. Something that is often forgotten is the protection of your landscaping during exterior paintwork. This is something else you should bring up when consulting with companies.

Living in California can be tricky when it comes to completing remodel work. With ever-increasing environmental laws, the types of paints and products used for your project are extremely important. You will want to make sure that anything used on your business complies with these laws. Of course, you do not want to break any laws but these special paintings will also be beneficial to the environment.

Of course, keeping the exterior of your business up to date and freshly painted is just as important as keeping the interior presentable. Before deciding to enter your business, your potential customers will first judge the outside appearance. If your business looks run down and outdated, it may deter customers from entering. To bring in more customers and bring pride to your business, keep the outside clean and up to date.

Finding a company that offers a variety of services is also a huge bonus. If the company only offers basic painting services, this may require you to hire multiple contractors to complete a simple job. You will want a company that offers a variety of painting, staining, repurposing, etc. services. This will help you to have the job completed quickly and without the added stress of managing multiple companies.

Keeping up the appearance of your business is crucial when it comes to impressing customers. Finding a company that will work to fit your business hours and budget will help you complete your remodeling projects quickly and without losing any money. Also, you will want to work with the company to create a color scheme that best fits the mood that your company wants to evoke. Update and refresh your business today with the help of a commercial painter.

Summer Pool Openings

So it's summer and time to open the pool. Hmmm where did everything get put back in the fall? Hopefully you packaged all of those little parts in the filter or in a clearly labeled box so that you can find them easily now. If not, happy hunting. But really, opening the pool is just as important as closing it, only you do everything in reverse and instead of looking forward to high winds and blustering snow, you can look forward to floating in the clear water and hosting pool parties.

Basically the first thing you want to do is drain the water off of your pool cover. Good luck getting it off if you do not. Once that is done, you'll want to remove it and let it dry. No one wants to put a pool cover away wet! Hang it over a swingset or some chairs or simply lay it out on the driveway or on the grass, whatever works best for you.

Now you are left with some water in the pool and probably some leaves and other debris too. Get all of that out and refill the pool to its proper depth. This will allow you to use the vacuum later on. Before the water rises too high, get those pipes and fittings back in, you do not want the water pouring out of those holes!

Reconnect your pump and filter, which should still be clean since you would have put it away clean in the fall, right? Once all is well with the water level, it's time to wipe down the walls, vacuum up all the left over debris and make the water great to swim in. This usually involves a dose of shock, a highly concentrated chlorine product that will eliminate all the bugs and bacteria and leave your water sparkling and clean.

Now is a great time to get your water tested and to put the right chemicals in to get a balanced and healthy water. pH is an important thing, if it's off by just a little bit it can mean an uncomfortable swim for your family. If in doubt, or the job just seems way to much to do alone there are companies that specialize in opening and closing pools so you do not have the added work and fuss.

Once that pool is open, enjoy because it will not be long till it's pool closing time once again.

All you Need to Know about Herniorrhaphy, or Hernia Surgery

Many people, no matter what age or sex, suffer from one type or another of hernia. Hernia occurs when because of a muscle failure or weakness the tissue underneath the muscles protrudes through a hole that it makes, creating a bulge. The cause of hernia is generally the fact that in time muscular tissue is getting tired and worn, so they lose resistance and tear. If somebody suffering from hernia ignores it, and many do so because in the beginning the pain in the area where the bulge appears is not disturbing, the disease will grow and will start to be a real problem. The bulge created by the hernia may not hurt first but it does cause quite some pain after some time, especially if the person that has it coughs, bends, or lifts something heavy.

So in most hernia cases a simple surgery is needed and it will fix everything. If the doctor recommended you hernia surgery then it would not be wise to delay it because complications are likely to appear. The lump can fill with fat and trap the intestine inside it, causing severe digestive problems. (when hernia blocks or traps another organ it’s called strangulated hernia). If this happens surgery must be done immediately because severe hernia complications are life-threatening.

Fortunately, because millions need hernia surgery each year, the surgical tehniquies have greatly improved in the last few years, and new tehniquies are researched continuously. Before, the surgery was a more complicated process that caused pain sometimes and that required a lot of time dedicated to the recovery, but now hernia surgery does not hurt at all and the recovery time is much shorter.

Hernia surgery depends on the type of hernia that the patients have, methods slightly differ from situation to situation, but there are two major tehniques designed to remove hernia:

-laparoscopic herniorrhaphy – the doctor makes two very small incisions through which he inserts special surgical devices that he controls through a remote-control and that fix the problem. This method leaves almost no scars after everything heals

-open herniorrhaphy – the doctor makes one big incision, fixes the hernia with surgical instruments controlled by his hands not by a remote control and then sews the hole in the muscles through which the bulge came out. This method may leave some scars after the wound heals.

After the surgery a small recovery period follows, and patients are prescribed some medication and a special diet that they must hold on to for a few days until digestion starts to work as it normally should. After a few days patients can start walking, but running, exercising, or other sporting activities are forbidden for about five weeks.

Hernia surgery is an easy surgery that millions go through and that does not present any complications in 99% of the cases, so there’s nothing to worry about if you need to be operated for hernia, but you have a lot to worry about if you keep delaying the surgery until complications show up.

How to Complete a Remodeling Project Successfully

Remodeling your home can be one of the most rewarding and exciting endeavors you will ever undertake when done properly. In the end, you can enjoy the beauty, larger size and modern conveniences of your home knowing you also increased its value. On the other hand, some remodel projects can unfortunately become the source of sleepless nights, tremendous frustration, and can literally take complete control of your life. Many homeowners even decide it is easier to move than to take on a major remodel project due to the horror stories they have heard regarding cost overruns, poor workmanship, and unscrupulous contractors. My experience has shown that most problems can be invented and eliminated by following a few simple guidelines that will make your next remodel project a fun and exciting time in your life rather than a stressful and depressing one.

Just like you would never start a new business without a business plan, you should never start a remodel without a "remodel plan". Putting your thoughts and vision into writing clarifies what you want to accomplish, establishes a budget, and allows you to see the bigger picture of what will be required to complete the project to your satisfaction and timeline. We all hate unpleasantly surprises, especially the ones that cost us money.

Fortunately, most of these can be avoided by writing out the steps required to complete a remodel project. Many homeowners erroneously believe that hiring a general contractor eliminates the need for a written plan. Not true! You will still need a plan before you ever interview the potential general contractors to ensure that they have a realistic understanding of your ideas and expectations in order to avoid misunderstandings and delays. The decision to whether or not to hire a general contractor will become part of the planning process and decision matrix.

To stay as organized as possible, I recommend breaking the plan into sections such as: my vision, pre-planning, budget considerations, eliminating the scope of project, and determining the critical path and timeline. You need to be realistic and build some flexibility into your plan because nothing will ever go perfectly smooth; your budget can include what you want to spend and a maximum not to be exceeded, your timeline can have ranges showing a best case scenario and a "plan b". Your plan's specificity is up to you. The more specific it is the fewer surprises may lurk in your project. If you do hire a general contractor, he may build on your plan with a more specific one of his own. Remember, this plan will become the foundation for your project.

Now it is time to plan how you are going to live with the disruption a remodel creates. Really think hard here and try to envision living without a kitchen, bathroom, or half a house for some time. If it is a kitchen remodel, what will you do for meals for the duration; eat out, impose on a friend, set up a make-shift kitchen in the garage? Bathroom; do you have a spare, can you share with teen-agers? Large add-on; what will your security be like if exterior walls are down, what about dust, dirt and noise? Landscape overhaul; will everyone have access to your unfenced pool, what about security? Some homeowners decide it is easier to move out during the construction phase, but that takes planning as well. Who will oversee the project, who will troubleshoot, what are the consequences if a mistake is made and not done until later? The more thought you give these issues up front, the better chance you will eliminate those ugly, costly, stressful surprises. It is here that some homeowners decide to move rather than do the project at all!

The next step is to determine the full scope of the project and who is going to complete the work as this will effect the overall budget. Do you require an architect? Does the project require plans to be submitted to the city for a permit? Do you need a designer? Are you going to serve as the general contactor and be responsible for obtaining all permits, arranging inspections, purchasing materials, arranging for storage and delivery of materials, and coordinating the work of plumbers, electricians, tile contractors, etc., or hire a general contractor do complete this for you? A general contractor is going to provide generous experiential benefit and reduce the time required to complete the project, but the remodel will cost more. If you decide to extend or complete the project yourself, are you prepared for delays due to lining up sub-contractors? A general contractor typically operates in one of two ways; either an open book process where the fees are based upon actual costs with an agreed upon mark up or closed book where you are provided with an overall cost to complete the project and you do not know the true costs and how much the contractor is making . In closed book bids, the contractor will usually provide you an allowance for finishes such as tile, carpet, plumbing fixtures, lights, etc. I personally do not like surprises and feel more comfortable with the open book methodology since it allows me more flexibility to choose the actual finishes I desire.

If your project requires permitting, you may also have to bring other items in your house up to code. An example is an older home without fire sprinklers, alarms, fenced pools, etc., in which the permitting authority may require you to complete work in other areas of the house to bring it up to code. If that is your case, these added costs must be factored into the budget and need to be addressed in your budget planning stage. By the time you are submitting your plans for permits, you should already have an idea of ​​the project's overall budget and estimates from the various trades to complete the work, timelines for completion, and your finishes selected.

In completing my budget, I always obtain three estimates from each trade to ensure I know what I am paying for. Even if I feel I know a contractor well, I still believe it is best to get three bids as a check and balance, and any honest contractor would agree with me. Additionally, I benefit by learning something new or getting a different idea from those supplying the estimates that I may want to incorporate into my overall plan. I am always upfront with the contractors, letting them know I am also receiving other bids and even telling them against what they are competing. You should compare bids, materials being used, what is included in the bid, skill levels of their employees, and how change orders are handled. Keep in mind, I am not advocating going with the lowest bidder, the highest bidder or the one in the middle. Look for the one who bid most fits into your plan. Also, include a visit to the registrar of contractors' website to verify the contractor has a valid license to complete the work you are requesting, how long they have been in business, and their complaint history. One of the biggest mistakes homeowners make is hiring a non-licensed contractor for more reasons than space in this article allows. Another great way to find reliable contactors is to ask friends and quality distributors for recommendations.

The great thing about a remodel project is personally creating something you know is beautiful. You will be living with and looking at the fines you select for many years to come. Light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, wall color, tile, stone etc all cost money, and how you prioritize your spending, where you choose to spend, and save is a very personal decision. In most cases you will get what you pay for in terms of service, durability, and quality. The last thing you want is for something two years old to already look dated, worn out, or worse yet need replacing. Electrical, framing, piping, etc are understood so absolutely it is the finishes that select that will determine your project's final appearance. Imagine if you select and install a cheap glass tile for your kitchen backsplash and the setting material shows through the glass, how happy will you be looking at the ripples in your wall in the kitchen where do you spend so much time for the next ten years? I have seen a floor that started to show irreparable large chips only months after installation because a cheap ceramic tile was used to save money, leaving the homeowner with the decision wherever to make another investment tear out and replacing the tile, or live with a floor that is only going to look worse over time.

Regardless if you are using a general contractor or overseeing the project yourself, you will want to make sure you are using quality products that are backed up with outstanding technical support. You can not tell the product quality or availability support by looking at an item; you will have to ask the supplier about warranties or guarantees. You will also need to determine if the material is suitable for its intended use. Can the product be used outdoors or in wet areas? Regarding technical support, two years ago I received a solicitation from a Chinese Glass Tile Company promoting their products to us. I asked their installation instructions and was surprised when they sent me instructions for a paper-faced glass tile rather than the mesh-mounted glass tile they were promoting. When I advised them of the error, they could offer no additional support; I can guarantee if I had been selling their products and had product challenges, they lacked both the technical expertise and product knowledge to provide any solutions.

Almost every project is going to take longer and cost more money to complete than originally anticipated. A plan will help prevent problems from occurring, however your plan is going to have to be flexible. Project promises can be very costly. One way to avoid these is to make your finish selections early in the project and purchase the items as soon as possible. This will help prevent backorder challenges that can result from shipping logistics or production schedules. If a material is backordered and you are ready for it in your project, only three things can happen, all bad; either construction stops while you wait for the material to arrive, or you pay extra freight charges if the material is available somewhere else to get it sooner, or you reselect the material. I can tell you so many stories of delays and cost overruns that could have been prevented if the client had just purchased the fines well before they were needed and had the vendor safely store the items in their warehouse until later.

If you know what you want, you can build it. The planning process is your road map for a successful project and yet you will have to always remain flexible as every project will have one or two surprises. Using quality products and reliable licensed general and sub-contractors will help ensure a smooth process, patience and understanding will need to become your friends, and in the end you will be able to stand back and know you created something specifically special for you and your family.

How to Install Laminate Flooring As Part of a Home Make Over

Laminate flooring has become the floor of choice for many homeowners in the past few years. It is an easy and affordable alternative to hard wood floors and has the same effect. It needs very little maintenance (unlike carpet), it is incredibly durable, and it comes in a wide array of colors / styles. Since being introduced to the US back in 1982, laminate flooring sales has seen a growth of up to twenty per cent per year. Not only is laminate floor affordable, but it also cuts on labor costs as it is easy to install.

Here is a step by step guide on how to install it yourself.

Tools needed:

– a rubber mallet
– a laminate flooring pull bar
– tape measure
– coping saw
– utility knife
– hammer
– nails
– laminate flooring
– underlayment pad

Prepare your laminate floor

You firstly need to get rid of your last type of flooring and prepare the floor for your laminate. Pull up your old carpet and padding. Remove all of the tack strips around the room's perimeter. You may need to scrape the floor to get rid of any padding sticking to it. Vacuum and if there are any noticeable dips, level them out. On a concrete slab, or another self-leveling compound may be skimmed on it. Next remove the baseboards and use the coping saw to cut off the bottoms of door jams, case openings, etc. This will probably be 1/4 "to 3/8" dependent on the combined thickness of the laminate and underlayment pad. It is recommended to buy the thicker pad; it is well worth the added expense.

Measure how much laminate flooring you need

It might sound obvious but you would be surprised by how many people guess the amount of laminate they need to buy and end up with either too little to complete the job, or wasting money on excess. You need the square footage, to get this simply measure the area's foot right to left and then forward and back. Multiply those figures together and that is your square footage. It is prudent to add at least 5% to that figure for scraps.

Install your laminate flooring First roll out the underlayment pad. Connect the pieces together with wide, clear, plastic tape. How your laminate planks connect depends on the brand you buy but they are all rather simple; most simply snap together. Remember to stagger the joints.

Laminate flooring is a type of "floating floor", meaning that it is all connected to itself but not to the house, so leave 1/4 "clearance at each wall. out before installing the baseboards.

As you go along you will need a few gentle taps with your mallet and pull bar to snug things up.

Things get tricky as you go through doorways; the best solution is to use your utility knife to trim the snapping connections on the adjoining planks.

Thai Recipes – Pad Thai Noodles Recipe

Pad Thai is a stir fried noodle dish, traditionally made with shrimps or prawns but can also be made with pork, chicken, beef, and even tofu. It can be made to be dry and light or heavy and oily depending on your tastes.

A delicious, quick, easy to prepare, and healthy dish, with low cost ingredients. It’s easy to see why this dish is so readily available on the streets of Bangkok, and why it’s so popular with budget conscious backpackers.

Flavours are somewhat complex, combining hot, salty, sweet and sour, but together a good balance is created.


Serves 2

200g of Shrimps or prawns (raw preferred)

2 medium sized eggs

approx 130g of dry rice noodles

4 tablespoons of pad thai sauce

1/2 lime

1/2 cup chinese chives

1 cup of bean sprouts

1 tablespoon of crushed chillis

1 tablespoon crushed peanuts

2 teaspoons of fish sauce

1 carrot (optional)

2 spring onions (optional)

2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

Pad Thai cooking instructions:

Step 1: Soaking the noodles – Fill a large bowl or container with warm water, and place the 130g of dried Thai rice noodles (approx 1/3 of the pack) into the bowl so that the water is completely covering the noodles. They will need about 10 minutes of soaking, so that they become soft, but not cooked.

Step 2: Take the 200g of prawns and using a sharp knife, make a cut along the back to open them up slightly, removing any stringy vein type material from inside. Once this is done, wash them all under cold water.

Step 3: Cut away the bottom 1/3 of the Chinese green chives and put aside for use later. Chop the other 2/3 of the chives up for cooking. Follow by slicing the spring onion diagonally into thin pieces. Also slice the carrot into thin slices, or grate it, keeping a handful aside for use later. Finally cut your lime into quarters, wash the bean sprouts, and your preparation is complete.

Step 4: By now the noodles should have been soaking for about 10 minutes, poor them into a sieve and drain all excess water.

Step 5: Put 2 teaspoons of vegetable oil into a wok or pan, and set your cooker to a high heat. When the wok is hot, put the prawns in (ensure they have been drained of any water to you don’t get hot oil spat at you!) Immediately after the prawns, crack the 2 eggs and put the white and yoke into the wok. Stir contents thoroughly adding more oil if required. After a few stirs, add the noodles, and continue to stir quickly and frequently.

Step 6: Add the 4 tablespoons of pad thai sauce, and stir in. Ensure all ingredients are thoroughly mixed together and the sauce evenly distributed. By this stage, all ingredients should have been cooking for just a couple of minutes on a high heat, cook for too long and the dish will become too dry.

Step 7: Add the chopped Chinese green chives, spring onions, some of the chopped carrot, and the bean sprouts into the wok. Once again stir everything together so the ingredients are well mixed. Add the 2 teaspoons of fish sauce, and continue stirring.

Step 8: Now the noodles should be soft and tangled – the cooking is complete. Pour contents onto a plate, and add to the side of the plate the bottom 1/3 of the Chinese green chives, bean sprouts, the 1/4 of lime, 1 table spoon of crushed chillies, and 1 tablespoon of crushed peanuts. Sprinkle some of the grated carrot you kept back earlier over the noodles.

Serve and Enjoy!

How a Photoswitch Saved My Job

In 1996 I was employed as maintenance supervisor at an olive cannery in the heart of California's fertilizer San Joaquin valley. We were restarting the cannery after an extended downtime while the cannery changed owners. This was my first opportunity to work in the food industry and a cannery. There were issues for me to learn and learn fast. The new harvest season's olives were due to start arriving just four weeks after I was hired.

Only four of the previous maintenance personnel were available to be rehired, so things were looking a little bleak at times. None of the new mechanics or electricians had food industry experience, either. In addition, there were almost no blueprints or wiring diagrams for the entire cannery or processing plant.

However, on the scheduled startup day, everything ran. Our two main lines used Angelus 60L Seamers with a maximum output capacity of 600 cans per minute. That figures out to ten cans per second. That's faster than I can count. The Seamers seal the end cap onto the cans. Due to space limitations, new, spiral elevators had been designed and added by the previous owners. The elevators and controls had been wired up but they never ran prior to shutdown.

We started up slow, but problems immediately surfaced. The discharge line from the spiral elevator to the cooker was a plastic cable line. Cans could tip over and jam. When the can jam-up backed cans into the discharge from the spiral elevator and then round and round the elevator. It took a careful effort and time to remove the jammed cans from the elevator.

A photoelectric sensor with a reflective lens was installed on the discharge cable line about six inches from the can entry to the discharge cable line. This sensor was designed and connected to stop the seamer and elevator when a jam-up occurred. The sensor had to see an opening between the cans, operate on / off, or it would shut down the elevator.

It turned out that the photoelectric sensor could only be adjusted to stay on all the time or off all the time when the cans were going by at any higher rate than Jog speed on the Seamer. We adjusted and adjusted the sensors. The sensors were replaced with new sensors. It did no good. The lines were stopped while we traced all the control and power wiring so we could try to determine if there was a problem in the wiring.

When I looked around, the Plant Manager, accompanied by the company President, Vice President and the Financial Controller were standing to the side watching me. All four of them had their arms crossed and unreadable expressions on their faces. I knew I was in trouble and had to get on top of this problem in a hurry.

Finally, I determined that the previous engineer had ordered an incorrect application for the original photoelectric sensors. I looked up the specifications for the installed sensors and found that their response time was not fast enough to "see" the cans as they went by. I looked in an Allen-Bradley sensor book for a photoelectric sensor with a fast response time, able to withstand the harsh environment of a cannery (steam and water), and would continue operation even when subjected to lots of vibration.

The photoelectric sensor I decided on was the Allen-Bradley Series 4000B Bulletin 42RL. This sensor has a response time of 5 milliseconds. That time was faster than our requirements. The case of the sensor is designed for harsh environments and kept the steam and wash-down water from entering the transmit, control circuitry area of ​​the sensor. The vibrations from the elevator and the cable line had no effect on the solid state wiring of the sensor.

After installation, the sensor was connected and pre-adjusted for the can stream. The sensor kept the cable line and elevator running and was "seeing" the individual cans. We physically simulated a jam-up of cans on the cable line. When the cans backed up to the sensor, the sensor operated and shut down the spiral elevator and opened the clutch on the seamer, stopping line production.

There remained only some fine tuning of the sensor as we ramped up to top speed of between 550 and 570 cans per minute. Again, we had a "command" audience of the top company officers for our startup. When the lines started and continued running or stopped on a can backup with no corresponding elevator jam, there were smiles all around. My job was safe.

Most of the can jams on the cable line were reduced to acceptable levels by the work of the Cookroom Manager and his Seamer Operators / Mechanics. They reworked the can drops and built-in several can cutouts. The can cutouts are places where a can lying on its side will be ejected from the cable line, thereby eliminating an almost certain jam in a can drop or at the Cooker entrance. By reworking the can drops, can jams in the drops were almost totally eliminated.

Besides the fact that I kept my job, I learned that anyone can make a mistake and, when in doubt, check the factory specifications of the equipment you are working with.