The Things We Do For Our Hobbies

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My husband and I are true hobbyists. Needlepoint is my love. I can work on a pre-designed canvas or make my own creation. The art is in tweaking the suggested colors and using the right stitches. My mother taught me that the back should look as perfect as the front. She was a real pro and passed her sense of perfection along. I used to take such a long time to reach her standards, but now I am rather proficient and can go at a fairly fast past. It is not that I am in a hurry, mind you, but that I can do a project as well in a few days as in a week or more. I love to see the imagery unfold. The stitches line up like dutiful yarn soldiers at attention. This hobby definitely appeals to a perfectionist and someone who likes to work at close range. I can go for hours when I am entrenched. Everything else goes by the wayside until I am done. The whole family waits to see the final outcome. I never show them the pattern before I start. They must wait until the end.

My husband has his own interests that revolve around his work bench in the garage and his trusty welder. He likes repairing metal items and building artistic arrangements of miscellaneous pieces to make an attractive sculpture. We both have our own aesthetic sense. It was a sad day indeed when his old welder broke down and refused to offer its services. It apparently was time to buy a new one and now he can have the latest model. He asked me to help select the best on the market and here is what I found – TIG welding is one of many popular types of fusing metal including MIG, stick, gas metal arc, oxy acetylene, and more. Tungsten Inert Gas welding is his preferred technique although he has done most all of them. Now it is a question of replacing a faulty machine. In case you are not familiar with the skill of welding, TIG is a bit like oxy acetylene but needs considerable expertise from the operator. If you want high quality work with a superior standard of finish, you will opt for this method. There is no messy sanding or grinding.

I was lucky to find a special on a TIG welder from this Facebook page. I believe in saving money where we can. A note on the new device: it is great for executing precise, critical welds when joining mild steel, aluminum, or stainless, among other metals. I don’t want to get into too many details about how it is done. I will just say that it is a two-handed process. One hand holds the torch while the other one feeds “filler” metal. There is usually a foot pedal or alternatively a fingertip remote to control the “arc voltage.” As with other techniques, an argon shielding gas is mandatory. Needless to say, he is thrilled with his new machine.