Nutritional Supplements – Are They Truly Necessary?

Find out if nutritional supplements are truly necessary for good health and whyNutritional supplements, vitamins and minerals taken to improve diet and health, are becoming more and more popular in today’s society. Many people, looking for some way to improve health and wellness, have turned to nutritional supplements for help. This trend has created an endless supply of nutritional supplements and brands advertising them in slightly different, supposedly better forms. Is it simply a useless fad? Or do people really need nutritional supplements to improve their health? The fact is that, due to eating habits, food quality, and other environmental factors in our society, nutritional deficiency is a reality that is difficult to avoid. Taking nutritional supplements is necessary to combat nutritional deficiency.Modern eating habits have created a need for Nutritional SupplementsEating habits have changed dramatically over the last century. Low in nutrients but extremely high in convenience, fast food has become a daily part of life for many people. Fresh foods are preferable, but not always easy to obtain or convenient to use. Even the healthiest individuals find it nearly impossible to get all the necessary vitamins and nutrients from dietary sources alone. Very few people actually consume the seven to ten servings of fruits and vegetables that they should a day. Nutritional supplements can fill in important gaps in a normal diet. The vitamins and minerals that they contain contribute to overall health and a strong immune system. Keep in mind, however, that nutritional supplements only supplement a diet, they do not replace it.Nutritional Supplements and the decreasing quality of foodAs eating habits have slowly become worse, so has the quality of the food itself. It is nearly impossible for the average person to obtain the proper amounts of vitamin and minerals from modern processed food that is packed full of sugar and fat. Even vegetables and fruits are of a lower standard. In 1992, the United Nations Earth Summit found that vegetables naturally containing vitamins and minerals like copper, potassium, boron, magnesium, and bioflavonoids contain dramatically less than they did fifty years ago. Such diminished levels of vitamins and minerals can be made up for through the use of nutritional supplements. Not doing so can lead to nutritional deficiency and a slew of completely avoidable health problems.Other environmental factors and Nutritional SupplementsUnfortunately, our society and culture produce other factors that can be damaging to health. These include high levels of stress and pollution. Both can weaken the immune system and make people vulnerable to sicknesses that could be combated if the body was stronger. Nutritional supplements help the body’s immune system continue functioning at peak levels of performance and thereby protect itself from the constant bombardment of disease that we all face.Taking nutritional supplements helps the body maintain a healthy, efficient immune system. This, in turn, protects the body from harmful effects and diseases brought on by factors like eating habits, food quality, and our stress filled environment.

Shoe Repairs And Several Other Things When I Was 7

Shoe Repairs And Several Other Things When I Was 7
My Dad repaired most of our shoes believe it or not, I can hardly believe it myself now. With 7 pairs of shoes always needing repairs I think he was quite clever to learn how to “Keep us in shoe Leather” to coin a phrase!

He bought several different sizes of cast iron cobbler’s “lasts”. Last, the old English “Laest” meaning footprint. Lasts were holding devices shaped like a human foot. I have no idea where he would have bought the shoe leather. Only that it was a beautiful creamy, shiny colour and the smell was lovely.

But I do remember our shoes turned upside down on and fitted into these lasts, my Dad cutting the leather around the shape of the shoe, and then hammering nails, into the leather shape. Sometimes we’d feel one or 2 of those nails poking through the insides of our shoes, but our dad always fixed it.

Hiking and Swimming Galas
Dad was a very outdoorsy type, unlike my mother, who was probably too busy indoors. She also enjoyed the peace and quiet when he took us off for the day!

Anyway, he often took us hiking in the mountains where we’d have a picnic of sandwiches and flasks of tea. And more often than not we went by steam train.

We loved poking our heads out of the window until our eyes hurt like mad from a blast of soot blowing back from the engine. But sore, bloodshot eyes never dampened our enthusiasm.

Dad was an avid swimmer and water polo player, and he used to take us to swimming galas, as they were called back then. He often took part in these galas. And again we always travelled by steam train.

Rowing Over To Ireland’s Eye
That’s what we did back then, we had to go by rowboat, the only way to get to Ireland’s eye, which is 15 minutes from mainland Howth. From there we could see Malahide, Lambay Island and Howth Head of course. These days you can take a Round Trip Cruise on a small cruise ship!

But we thoroughly enjoyed rowing and once there we couldn’t wait to climb the rocks, and have a swim. We picnicked and watched the friendly seals doing their thing and showing off.

Not to mention all kinds of birdlife including the Puffin.The Martello Tower was also interesting but a bit dangerous to attempt entering. I’m getting lost in the past as I write, and have to drag myself back to the present.

Fun Outings with The camera Club
Dad was also a very keen amateur photographer, and was a member of a camera Club. There were many Sunday photography outings and along with us came other kids of the members of the club.

And we always had great fun while the adults busied themselves taking photos of everything and anything, it seemed to us. Dad was so serious about his photography that he set up a dark room where he developed and printed his photographs.

All black and white at the time. He and his camera club entered many of their favourites in exhibitions throughout Europe. I’m quite proud to say that many cups and medals were won by Dad. They have been shared amongst all his grandchildren which I find quite special.

He liked taking portraits of us kids too, mostly when we were in a state of untidiness, usually during play. Dad always preferred the natural look of messy hair and clothes in the photos of his children.

Industrial Vs Non Industrial Plasma Cutting Machines

Industrial vs Non-industrial Plasma machinesPlasma cutting technology is a widely used process that has gained widespread popularity for its ability to cut most forms of metal and is quite favoured for its simplicity in use. It’s versatility with its range of capabilities and applications have made it a universally accepted metal cutting process.Non-industrial Plasma Non industrial plasmas are best suited for garage users of steel fabrication who require plasma cutting perhaps 2-3 hours per day 3-4 days per week. A plasma in this class is best suited to small operations that work on mostly customised jobs. Non industrial plasma units are much cheaper to purchase than industrial plasmas but cannot tolerate the ongoing high volume that an industrial Plasma is designed for. Air plasmas and lower end conventional mechanised plasmas generally fall into the category of non-industrial plasmas.Industrial Plasma Industrial plasmas refer to plasma units geared towards high volume large production facilities that have enough work to elicit a machine to operate a full eight hour shift five days per week. Plasmas in this class usually can operate up to three eight hour shifts per day, seven days per week if necessary. If your operation fits into this category then an industrial plasma is not only preferable, but an absolute necessity.Higher end Conventional plasma and High Definition Plasmas fall into the category of industrial plasmas. With modern day advances however High definition is generally the plasma of choice due to the higher levels of automation they provide as well as the higher level of cutting proficiency they are capable of achieving.Advantages of Industrial Plasma (high definition plasma) • Lower operating Costs• Oxygen and multi-gas capability for improved• Faster Cut speeds• Improved weldability• Significantly longer consumable life• Thicker cutting capability• Quick disconnect torch• 100% duty cycle• Hi-Definition technology• Best cut quality including squarer edges and rounder holes• Mark, cut and bevel with the same consumables• More process options for optimizing cut quality• Remote (CNC) gas switching capability• Patent TruHole technology for best plasma cut holes – unique to Hypertherm high definition plasmas• Hdi thin stainless technology• Optimal gas mixing for mid-range stainless steel• Higher pierce capability• Much higher automation• Higher resale value• Much longer life on machine• Significantly higher production capability• Significantly higher computer aided design capabilityEssential components of an Industrial plasma cutting machine What is most essential to a plasma machines ability to provide continuous quality cutting are the ‘Controllers’ of a plasma unit. A well-engineered, well-constructed control unit is essential to providing consistent high level cutting precision and quality, carried out at high speeds over long hours. A poor to average control unit is incapable of achieving consistent precision especially over long production intervals where it is likely to overheat or break down.Controllers consist of five main components: Power source, controller, a lifter, drives and servo motors.Power SourceIt is very important to get a renown plasma source for your machine to achieve a high performance and reliability to deliver consistent cut quality, high productivity, lowest operating costs whilst lasting you a long time for your business.LifterThe lifter is an essential component providing precise height control of the plasma torch. Utilising a quality THC height sensor will reduce the cut to cut cycle time (up to 60%), provides better cut quality due to proper assembly of torch height, savings on power and longer consumable life.In addition the quality torch height controllers automatically adjusts voltage for proper torch height to optimize cut quality and consumable life. Traditional torch height controls require an operator to periodically adjust arc voltage to ensure proper cut height.Control The controller needs to have all the process expertise built in resulting in flexibility and ease of use for the end user. A quality controller has a digital I/O sercos system that will deliver reliable motion system quality and will improve the cut quality and productivity.The software should allow flexibility and ease of use for the end user, so a person with little or no experience on the controller can cut like a seasoned professional in as little as a day.High End Servo Drives and motorsHigh end drives like Bosch help ensure high stiffness essential for accuracy, minimal backlash and easy adjustment. The servo drives receive command signals that amplify and transmit electric current to the servo motor in order to produce motion proportional to command signals.Their main advantage over DC and AC motors used in non-industrial plasmas is the addition of motor feedback which can be used to detect unwanted motion or to ensure the accuracy of a command motion. Servos in constant speed changing use typically have a better lifecycle than DC/AC motors and can also act as a brake by shutting off generated electricity from the motor itself.Bosch Servo motors Bosch servo motors allow for precise control of angular position, velocity and acceleration. It consists of a sophisticated motor coupled to a sensor for position feedback.Stepper motors typically used in low end CNC machines provide no feedback encoder as drive signal specifies the number of steps of movement to rotate. This lack of feedback limits performance as the stepper motor can only drive a load that is well within its capacity otherwise missed steps under load may lead to positioning errors.Low rails Industrial plasma’s usually feature low rails secured to the ground to ensure the highest level of stability driven by helical drives to provide optimal accuracy during the rapid fast moving of the plasma beam during long production intervals.Table design rails usually seen on non-industrial plasmas won’t have the same level of rigidity and are thus less suited to high volume rapid pace production. In addition with rails built onto the cutting table and so close to the plasma, with constant long duration cutting the rails are at risk of distorting in shape (over time) due to the constant exposure to heat.CAD / CAM software To greatly improve the efficiency of production in a high volume settings you require a more advanced software to provide a much wider range of functions which greatly enhance the productivity of that operation. Using a more advanced software unit can provide some of the following advantages just a to name a few:• Import CAD and CNC files• Separate multiple parts from a single CNC file• Group Parts into clusters for nesting• Automatic and manual nest sequencing• Control cut directions and cut sequencing on part by part basisThe addition of a quality software allows a much higher level of automation, significantly reducing key punching and is user friendly enough to allow even the most novice operator to cut parts like a seasoned professional.Cutting table For the purposes of industrial fabrication it is essential that a cutting table is well constructed, heavy and durable to meet the demands of an industrial operation. In most non-industrial plasma units, cutting tables are constructed from thin sheet metal and alluminium castings to reduce the cost of the overall unit. The problem with this is that due to the thin, light construction, the table can shake or wobble, adversely affecting the accuracy of a cut part. Furthermore over long production periods, due to the ongoing exposure of heat generated from the plasma these tables are likely to distort over time.The durable robust construction of an industrial plasma table is essential to give the table stability for the highest level of accuracy and to prevent heat distortion.Industrial plasma units usually offer the choice of a water or dry table with a dust collection unit. Water tables are cheaper to purchase but require much more ongoing maintenance and cleaning which over time becomes more expensive than using a dry table with a fume extraction unit. In an industrial environment both are acceptable.Non-industrial plasmas usually come with water tables once again to reduce overall the cost of the unit though some are offered with a dry table and fan which is only sufficient in removal of dust and fumes in a light fabrication setting.Having a Support team The purchase of a Plasma machine whilst being an expensive investment can provide enormous returns to any business where there is a demand for work, the correct facilities are utilised and they are maintained with the right level of care.It is essential therefore that a full support team is available to service your machine for ongoing maintenance, in the incident of a breakdown or where any other form of technical support is required.In any high volume industrial environment any down time can translate into large losses in profit so it is important to have a local service team, but more to the point a team who knows the full operation of the machine from bolt to bolt, to shorten the time required to fix the machine, though also to provide phone support for quick fixes that do not cost any call out fees.Why Non-Industrial Plasmas are so much cheaper to purchase than Industrial Plasmas Many first time buyers of Plasma machines may look into purchasing a non-industrial plasma as a form of entry level use not fully understanding the full capabilities or limitations they have especially when compared to industrial level plasmas.A cheaper price tag is often the motivator to go with a non-industrial plasma but in the long run once users have been able to thoroughly compare the two in performance, reliability and productivity it becomes very clear why non-industrial plasmas are so much cheaper.In most situations fabricators who start out using non-industrial plasmas find with ongoing use that their functional capacity is very limited and with further research and exposure to industrial plasmas that they eventually upgrade to one as they provide much greater productivity, more flexibility in use and better quality cut parts with consistent precision. In addition industrial plasmas have a much greater lifespan, are a lot more durable and are built to handle a much higher degree of volume equating to far better value.Many manufacturers of non-industrial plasma machines try to capitalise on the lower end cheap market by providing only the bare essentials of plasma cutting. Many of the reasons they can offer a plasma machine at a cheaper price is due to reasons including:- Often software is not included in the package and in many cases users need to integrate a separate laptop/PC to operate the CNC cutting function. Even when software is provided usually they only provide very basic functions.-Table and beam are constructed of thin light constructed sheet metal, not suited to heavy duty fabrication and are highly likely to distort in shape over time, due to ongoing heat exposure generated from the plasma. Rails are also built onto the table rather than being bolted into the ground.This type of design does not provide the stability required to support quality precision during fast rapid movement due to the lack of rigidity and lightness of the table construction.-Use of DC/AC motors and stepper motors as alternatives to drives and servo motors translate to limited performance, slower cutting, inconsistent poorer precision and positioning, slower acceleration and velocity.-Fume extraction units are not included and another way to reduce the price on non-industrial units. A water table or dry table with fan are usually what are provided, though with light fabrication this is usually sufficient.-Cheaper components are normally incorporated that don’t have any real brand reputation for performance or reliability.-Aside from the above non-industrial plasmas can generally operate perhaps 2-3 hours per day 4-5 days per week and have an average lifespan of about 3-5 years.Conclusion For those considering the purchase of a plasma unit it is very important to be clear on the capability of the unit and whether or not that unit can meet all their requirements not just that of a single part.Plasma machines have been designed to provide varying levels of functionality with a price range to match. Industrial plasma machines are logically more expensive but when the components are thoroughly broken down, one can clearly see that the cost is commensurate with the performance and capability, and in retrospect this is also true of non-industrial plasma machines. When matched in the suitable environment, business owners often see a return on investment within 2-3 years and as smaller businesses grow, industrial plasmas become a very natural progression.