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Unique Aerial Yoga Accessories Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 09:01 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

Unique Aerial Yoga Accessories


    If you love aerial yoga and have your own yoga swing at home, you’re probably looking for new tricks, accessories and apparatus to use to improve your technique. When it comes to aerial yoga accessories, there are loads of unique and interesting items available to choose from!


    



    When you’re wanting to integrate some mat yoga or floor work into your aerial workouts, or you need to stretch a particular area of your body, there’s something on this list for you.


    



    So, without further delay, here is a list of awesome accessories to help you step-up your aerial yoga game! Enjoy!


    



    1. Yoga Swing Hanging Ladder


    Why stop at a hammock, swing or trapeze when you can have a hanging ladder?! Use this ladder with your existing hardware and rigging to expand on the versatility of your aerial yoga skills.


    



    You can use the rungs on the hanging ladder to make some really cool shapes:


    If you need some extra padding and comfort in your yoga swing to perform more advanced poses, try a cushion insert for your swing.


    These cushion inserts are a very simple design, you slide the cushion length-ways into your swing, fold it over at the sides and you’re ready to comfortably swing!


    



    They’re great value at $25 and there’s a choice of 5 colours!


    The Yoga Wheel is the ultimate apparatus for anyone trying to improve their back bends. There’s also loads of other poses and stretches you can perform using the Yoga Wheel. A high quality one like this from UpCircleSeven can support 500lbs+ so you can be confident it will support your weight.


    



    Aerial Yoga Accessories to help you up your game


    Home ? 9 Unique Aerial Yoga Accessories


    



    This article may contain affiliate links. This means that at no extra cost to you, I may earn a commission if you use one of these links to make a purchase. Read the full disclosure.


    



    4. Extra Large Yoga Mat


    If you find yourself wanting to stretch out more than a regular mat allows, this extra large yoga mat could be the answer to your floorwork troubles!


    



    At 72″ x 48″ – it’s practically double the size of a regular yoga mat and it’s really thick and padded. That means it’s great for using outdoors too. Alternatively, use this beneath your yoga swing for added support.


    



    Need a neck adjustment when you’re out and about? Look no further! Neck pain is the root cause of millions of headaches and migraines every day. It’s not the only cause of headaches, but it is a big contributor!


    



    Having access to a chiropractor or aerial yoga stand can help – but they’re not always available on demand if you’re out and about at work, etc.


    



    This portable device allows you to adjust and stretch your neck. You can use it at home, when travelling or at work.


    



    Ready to buy your very own aerial yoga hammock for use at home? You’ve come to the right place to read reviews about the best yoga swings and inversion tools currently on the market!


    



    Aerial yoga, or anti-gravity yoga, is a relatively new form of yoga that involves a metal frame or rig on the ceiling supporting an aerial yoga hammock, or silk. Practitioners can use the hammock like a swing, gently bending forward or backwards, or engaging in more advanced yoga postures, much the way trapeze performers in the sky engage in acrobatic spinning maneuvers.


    



    Some studios offer aerial yoga, but you can do aerial yoga at home if you’re motivated and have the right gear. The best yoga swings and aerial inversion tools are fairly easy to purchase and set up.


    



    Where can you buy aerial hoop? Yoga shops and sporting goods stores may have one or two swings available, but Amazon is the best place to find the biggest variety of options. Read on for our top recommendations for yoga swings and trapeze products!


    



    Aerial yoga is said to help open the hips and relieve back pain or tightness. Of course, it can also serve simply as a way to provide some variety to your yoga practice and to help you expand your horizons by trying out some basic moves.


    



    “Anti-gravity” is just a fancy way of saying aerial. It means that you’re doing yoga moves off the ground. The equipment goes by many different names – you’ll hear terms like hanging yoga, hanging ropes, anti gravity yoga hammocks, inversion tools, trapeze stands, gravity swing inversion tools, and pull up bars.


    



    Generally, these terms are all referring to different pieces that work together as part of an aerial rig. Don’t be confused by the term “silk” – that’s just another word for an aerial yoga hammock, regardless of whether it’s really made from silk (most are not.)


    



    Ready to try aerial yoga at home? Most people do aerial yoga in a large room or door frame. You could even do it in a garage or outdoors in the yard by hanging it from a tree branch. If you’re curious about giving anti-gravity yoga a try in your house, these are the some of the best yoga swings you should consider.


    



    Right now the king of the aerial yoga marketplace is the company known as UpCircleSeven. Their inversion swing has been around for more than four years, and it’s currently one of the best-selling items of its kind.


    



    The parachute and rope material are sturdy, so they will give you plenty of support for poses like Banana Man once you find the right door frame or rafter to attach it to. In fact, its stated load capacity is 550 pounds, which is far more than anyone will need.


    



    One great plus with the UpCircleSeven is that its handles are larger and have more padded foam than those from some other companies. This increases the comfort level and makes it a solid choice for newcomers. This one comes with two extension straps and a printed guide for people who may be getting into anti-gravity yoga for the first time.


    



    The UpCircleSeven swing price is about average compared with other anti-gravity yoga swings available for sale. You don’t want to pinch pennies when it comes to a device like this that requires stability and quality construction!


    



    Aerial yoga is a fun, modern take on traditional yoga that involves using a silk hammock for support as you perform yoga poses as well as strength and conditioning exercises.


    



    This form of yoga involves many of the same poses you would find in other yoga classes and can be performed by anyone at any level, including beginners.


    



    What sets aerial yoga apart, though, is that some part of your body will be interacting with the hammock, which can make certain poses easier and others more challenging, says Kevin Bigger, teacher training director at Om Factory School of Yoga. 


    



    "The introduction of the aerial hammock to a traditional yoga pose will sometimes offer support, but it can also sometimes make a pose significantly harder as you have to contend with balance," says Bigger.


    Aerial yoga is typically practiced in a group setting at yoga or fitness centers, with trained and certified aerial yoga instructors.


    



    Sessions are usually 60 minutes and can cost anywhere between $25 to $55, says Alexander Fenton-Irias, group fitness coordinator at Crunch, South Beach.


    



    If you've never done aerial yoga, here's what you can expect in a typical session, according to Bigger:


    



    Hammock assignment: When you arrive, you will be assigned a hammock, which will be adjusted to your height. Most beginner classes require the hammock to be waist-high.


    Warm-up: The instructor will take you through a warm-up routine, which may or may not involve the hammock.


    Workout: The main workout will consist of a combination of traditional yoga poses performed with the hammock (which is typically three to four feet above the ground, depending on your height) as well as conditioning exercises. A yoga pose you might perform, for example, is the half moon pose, which is done with the hammock supporting your hands, ankle, upper back, or hips. Examples of conditioning exercises include supported pull-ups and plank pose variations using the hammock. 


    Inversions: You will likely also spend some time hanging upside down in different inverted positions, which allow the spine to relax and lengthen.


    Cool-down: The cool-down period could include a guided meditation and the aerial version of corpse pose, where you lie in the hammock and relax your body completely.


    Initially, people who try aerial yoga may experience nausea when they're upside down; however, it usually goes away after the first few practices, says Fenton-Irias. 


    



    In general, yoga is proven to increase flexibility, improve balance, build strength, and ease back pain among many other benefits. Aerial yoga has similar benefits, though the research is more limited on this particular form of yoga. Here's what the research on aerial yoga has found so far for how it may improve your health.


    



    Aerial yoga not only improves your balance but also builds muscle strength as you hold yourself upright in the hammock using your arms and core. 


    



    "Aerial yoga targets all your muscles. It requires a lot of core engagement and upper body strength, and depending on the pose, the leg muscles will also be required to put in some extra work," says Fenton-Irias.


    



    "In fact, almost every pose in yoga swing stand requires a little bit more effort from your ... core than a grounded yoga class. For instance, when one of your legs is in the hammock and the other is on the floor, your core and inner thigh muscles need to engage more specifically to help you maintain balance," says Bigger. 


    



    A small 2016 study commissioned by the American Council on Exercise that involved 16 healthy, female participants aged 18 to 45 found that doing three 50-minute sessions of aerial yoga per week for six weeks resulted in:


    



    Weight loss of 1.2 kilograms (2.6 pounds) on average and reduced body fat percentage


    Improved blood glucose and blood pressure levels


    



    Most people can participate in an aerial workout, ranging from young children to adults in their 80s, says Bigger. 


    



    For people with special needs, mobility limitations, or other concerns, Bigger recommends starting out with a few private classes, before enrolling in a group session. 


    



    Consulting with your healthcare provider first can help determine whether this workout is appropriate for you, says Fenton-Irias.


    



    "Like all forms of physical exercise, it is possible to injure yourself in class. In aerial yoga, you could fall out of the hammock, but this happens very rarely. It is no more likely that a student would injure themselves in aerial yoga than they would in other yoga classes," says Bigger.

CRIMPING TERMINALS - The importance of using the right tool Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:58 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

CRIMPING TERMINALS - The importance of using the right tool


    Pre-insulated terminals and splices are pre-insulated RBY terminals and splices designed specifically to answer the need for inexpensive, insulated electrical terminations. The quality, ease of installation and inherent simplicity make them candidates for almost all commercial applications. PLASTI-GRIP is available in ring, spade, flanged, spaded, and slotted tongue terminals, as well as parallel and butt splices.


    These terminals and splices are well accepted in all markets and feature easy installation with TE tooling, crimp-performance guaranteed. The insulation provides good dielectric strength and supports the wire insulation so that no bare wire is exposed.


    Funneled wire entry on the terminal prevents turned-back wire strands and permits rapid wire insertion during high speed production. Serrations in the crimp barrel provide maximum contact and tensile strength after crimping. The “C” crimp is specially designed by TE for a long-lasting crimp.


    



    Application tooling has been developed to ensure uniform high-quality terminations. Tools and pre-insulated ring terminals have been designed together to promote ease and speed of application while providing precise crimping pressure for every wire size. PLASTI-GRIP is available in ring, spade, flanged, spaded, and slotted tongue terminals, as well as parallel and butt splices.


    



    Applications include HVAC, instruments/controls, lighting, switchgear, power supplies, panel boxes, transportation, motors, and many more.


    



    The development of international trade, supply chains and transport increases the turnover of container pin pre-insulated terminals. Changes in the port environment and the functions of terminals have created a demand for logistics solutions and value-added services. On the other hand, these changes have also influenced the port-city interface.


    



    The purpose of this paper is to present the activity of container terminals and examine how the growing turnover of container units has affected the port cities. The interaction between the latter and port terminals has been discussed. The research is based on the terminals located in Polish port cities of Gdynia and Gdańsk, which play a leading role in the development of the economy in the region.


    



    The research has shown that maritime networks have an ever-growing influence on ports and port – city relationships. On the one hand, the growth of maritime logistic services has a positive influence on the labor market and transport infrastructure, which is also used by the inhabitants. On the other hand, the increase in container cargo volume has a negative impact on urban areas through a number of negative externalities (congestion, noise, pollutant emissions, etc.). This creates a conflict in which the city has to bear the external effects of the port operations. In this context, solutions incorporating the sustainable development of both port and urban areas are essential.


    



    With the increasing container cargo throughput and the arising of port congestion, container ports start to choose the investment expansion strategy to increase the port efficiency and then to figure out the problem of port congestion. To analyze this strategy, we formulate a non-cooperative game model for a two-terminals-one-port system, and derive the optimal equilibrium outcomes of the investment expansion strategy and investment constant strategy. In the game, we find that when the investment parameter of expansion strategy and impact of handling efficiency on demand changes, both pure-strategy Nash equilibrium and mixed-strategy Nash equilibrium exist, and two pre-insulated blade terminals are more likely to choose the investment expansion strategy in most cases. Numerical simulation is applied to explore the equilibrium strategy under different circumstance.


    



    Owing to a rapid growth in world trade and a large increase in the flow of containerized goods, sea container Terminals play a vital role in globe-spanning supply chains. Container terminals should be able to handle large ships, with large call sizes within the shortest time possible, and at competitive rates. In response, terminal operators, shipping lines and port authorities are investing in new technologies to improve container handling and operational efficiency. Container terminals face challenging research problems that have received much attention from the academic community. The focus of this article is on highlighting recent developments in container terminals, which can be categorized into two areas: (i) innovative container terminal technologies and (ii) new OR directions and models for existing research areas. By choosing this focus, we complement existing reviews on container terminal operations.


    



    If you currently work in the finance industry, or have aspirations of doing so, chances are you have heard of a Bloomberg terminal. This Beginner's Guide to Bloomberg tutorial will introduce you to one of the industry's most widely used sources for real-time financial information. This guide is aimed at new Bloomberg users, and will provide an overview of how to use a Bloomberg terminal. If you are a more experienced user, or if after reading this guide you want to go into more detail on Bloomberg's capabilities, please be on the lookout for the Advanced Guide to Bloomberg.


    



    In this basic guide, we will examine how to sign up for, install, and access Bloomberg. We will then go on to covering basic navigation on the Bloomberg system. Navigating Bloomberg is somewhat unique in that the system uses a special keyboard with some keys that are different from those found on a "normal" keyboard. Therefore, the navigation section of this guide will be important to newcomers. After gaining a working knowledge of these basics, we will then move on to discuss some of the market and news monitor functions that are available on Bloomberg. The remainder of the tutorial will include information on analyzing securities as well as some tips and tricks for getting the maximum possible benefit from this remarkable machine.


    



    There are two ways to begin using Bloomberg. The first is to subscribe to the Bloomberg service. You can do so by contacting them (general contact number is (212) 318-2000).1? The representative you speak with can then take down details of what you are looking for and have someone from the sales team contact you. Pricing and terms of the contract are unique to each user and would be discussed when the sales team contacts you. However, be aware that Bloomberg is an expensive system and that having your own terminal may not be practical for all users. Should you decide to subscribe to your own service, Bloomberg can help you install the software over the phone, or can come out to visit you and assist in installation. Note: the software can be installed on most PCs, but the company will give you a special keyboard for navigating the system. The second method of accessing Bloomberg is to find a public facility that has a Bloomberg terminal. Many larger libraries and universities have one, so that is a good place to start looking. 


    



    The downside of this approach is that you won't be able to customize the system and will have to share it with other users. However, for many users these drawbacks may be outweighed by the cost savings over subscribing to the system as an individual.


    



    Solderless terminals are one of the lowest cost components in a system, but the repercussions of a bad crimp can be crippling. There is much more complexity to the process than meets the eye, but unfortunately many people in the industry overlook the fundamentals of a good crimp and unknowingly put the integrity of their products at risk.


    



    Most people think they can use any tool to crimp a terminal. If the terminal looks good after a brief visual inspection, they assume the connection is secure. However, looks can be deceiving. A single bad crimp can cause both physical and electrical problems, resulting in lost production time, damage, repairs, and potential injury or litigation.


    



    Companies routinely misunderstand agency certification criteria, and fail to crimp according to industry-mandated specifications. TE terminals and splices undergo rigorous performance testing to meet the needs of our customers entering the era of Industry 4.0. When used with TE’s specially-designed tooling options, the crimped components meet the most stringent safety, performance, and certification requirements.


    



    Micro-precision Glass Insulated Terminals (referred to as glass terminals) are the core components used in precision electronic equipment and are often used for electrical connections between modules. As a glass terminal, its quality has a great influence on the performance of precision electronic equipment. Due to the limitations of materials and production processes, some of the pre-insulated hook terminals produced have defects, such as missing blocks, pores and cracks. At present, most of the defect detection of glass terminals is done by manual inspection, and rapid detection easily causes eye fatigue, so it is difficult to ensure product quality and production efficiency. The traditional defect detection technology is difficult to effectively detect the very different defects of the glass terminal. Therefore, this paper proposes to use deep learning technology to detect missing blocks. First, preprocess the sample pictures of the missing block defects of the glass terminal, and then train the improved Faster Region-CNN deep learning network for defect detection. According to the test results, the accuracy of the algorithm in detecting missing defects in the glass terminal is as high as 93.52%.

How Scooters Are Becoming Millennials’ Extreme Sport of Choice Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:55 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

How Scooters Are Becoming Millennials’ Extreme Sport of Choice


    Pedestrians on the sidewalks of downtown Chicago hold up cellphone cameras, drivers honk in frustration and the police don’t quite know what to do. It’s not every day that 300 young scooter riders flood the streets, ignoring red lights and turning a loading dock into a temporary stadium – to the dismay of at least one exasperated business owner.


    



    It’s called a street jam, where riders flock from all over the world to shred a city, performing tricks and causing the same type of mayhem more usually associated with skateboarders. For those who grew up during the Razor-scooter boom in the early aughts, it’s hard to see a GAS scooter as much more than a fad, let alone a symbol of rebellion, but that stereotype doesn’t exist for the younger generation. Eighteen years after the release of the first Razor, scooters have come of age, spawning a uniquely millennial subculture with the same disruptive spirit as skateboarding – minus the steep learning curve. And according to many scooter riders, it’s actually overtaking skateboarding in popularity.


    



    “I’ve seen less and less skateboarders over the years,” says Devin Szydlowski, a 17-year-old semi-pro rider who traveled from San Luis Obispo, California, to take part in the Chicago Jam in August, one of the largest in the U.S. “It depends on the [skate] park, but we have the majority. There’s more scooter riders than skateboarders. We’re targeting younger kids, whereas skateboarding is targeting older kids.” A study on Statista.com by the Outdoor Foundation backs up his observation: The number of skateboarders in the U.S. decreased from 10.1 million to 6.4 million between 2006 and 2016, with an even more dramatic drop among skaters age six to 17.


    



    “It’s huge in other countries,” says Logan Fuller, a 25-year-old whose baggy, torn jeans and mischievous eyes look straight out of a Nineties issue of Thrasher magazine. He’s one of the best known scooter riders at the jam and is capable of grinding down a 22-stair handrail. Fuller is based in Maryland but basically lives on the road, traveling from jam to jam, supported by sponsorships and contest winnings. “I just went to Russia and France for street jams, they’re crazy. There’s, like, a thousand people,” he says.


    



    Starting at Grant Park Skate Park, the riders at the Chicago Jam – most of whom look under 18 – critical-mass through downtown, stopping along the way to grind down rails and spin scooters around their heads like helicopters. As with skateboarding, the chance of landing a trick is relatively low and the probability of racking yourself on a rail dangerously high.


    



    The event is totally rogue, with no permits and no Internet trail outside social media. Historically, it was organized by a prominent scooter manufacturer, but this year it grew too large for a business to carry the legal liability should (or when) the cops arrive. It’s so loosely planned that there’s not even a route map; organizers simply direct the mob using a megaphone.


    



    The best tricks win prize money, crucial since many of the top street EEC 50 Scooter riders backpack across the country for months at a time. But what’s more important than money is the opportunity to put faces to Instagram names. After the jam, kids gather in a warehouse to watch the premiere of a scooter film, buy scooter art prints and mosh to a performance by Atlanta rapper KZ, whose Instagram features as many photos of him on a scooter as in the studio. There’s a rebellious spirit to the gathering, and half the young riders seem like the type to sneak cigarettes between classes – but good luck asking any of them for a lighter. After all, this is the vaping generation.


    



    Skateboarding’s roots lie in 1960s surf culture, but push scooters originated as much more of a kids’ toy. The image started to change when Razor launched its insanely popular “Pro” model in 2000. The founder owned a toy company and saw that scooters had become trendy as transportation for Japanese businessmen in Tokyo, thus the brand’s initial retail partner: The Sharper Image (sticker price: $149). They sold at a pace of one million units per month for the first six months.


    



    Razor soon realized that scooters could become a new action sport and began to invest in building a community. In 2001, they offered a $1,000 prize for the first person to land a backflip and created the first touring team of riders.


    



    “We started putting on competitions locally and then a national tour,” says Ali Kermani, a skateboarder who helped Razor cultivate its extreme-sports program. “We’d go all over the place to skate parks that had strong scooter scenes, like the Incline Club in New Jersey and Skate Barn West in Washington [State]. Then the first street jams started happening in New York.”


    



    Even though the sport isn’t recognized by the X-Games and no Tony Hawk figure has propelled it to the mainstream, athletes are innovating at an unprecedented pace. The most groundbreaking trick in skateboarding history is likely Hawk’s 900 at the 1999 X-Games, the result of nearly 50 years of skating progression. Scooter rider KC Corning landed one in 2004, showing how quickly the sport is evolving.


    



    “Scootering is the first sport that developed through the Internet, so we were able to build a whole industry in just a few years,” says Andrew Broussard, considered by many to be the godfather of scootering. He landed his first tailwhip on July 4th, 2001, and became hooked. While still in high school, he launched Scooter Resource, a message board that for the next decade would be the website of record for the community. Broussard also began hacking together custom scooters capable of taking more abuse, a business originally branded Scooter Resource in 2006, before being renamed Proto EEC 125 Scooter in 2008. The company doubled its revenue for six years straight, its growth only slowing once a rush of other companies entered the market.


    



    A rift exists between “park” and “street” brands, with street riders preferring upstart, rider-owned companies like Proto and TSI to corporate operations like Fuzion (available at Walmart). Scooters are modular, which has created a marketplace for component-specific companies like River Wheel Co. and Tilt, which produces nearly indestructible wheels, decks, forks and even the clamps that connect the parts. Scooter riders (or often their parents) drop up to $700 on pro-level rides, a sharp contrast to the costs of earlier models.


    



    The lexicon of tricks grew and was cataloged on Scooter Resource with specific credits for the pioneers behind each move. Because a scooter has handlebars like a BMX bike and a deck like a skateboard, it’s a hybrid capable of incorporating tricks from each with a much quicker learning curve, which is undoubtedly part of why it appeals to a younger crowd.


    



    “When you first start out skating, you can’t just ollie right away, you have to practice for six months,” says Szydlowski. “On a scooter, a bunny hop takes, like, a day to learn. Or an hour.”


    



    Today’s riders mainly find inspiration on YouTube. It’s resulted in underground scooter celebrities like the Funk Bros – Corey and Capron Funk – who are far from household names but boast 3.5 million subscribers. Scooters still play a part in their videos, but they’re now known mainly as Jackass-style pranksters (who can land triple front flips). Ryan Williams, a well-known rider of both scooters and BMX bikes, has 950,000 Instagram followers. But despite these riders’ huge followings, their popularity leaves little trace outside social media.


    



    The rest of the community is the same; nearly everything happens on Instagram or Facebook. According to Tommy Daddono, one of the organizers of the Chicago Jam and a founder of scooter manufacturer Outset Select, his event is one of the most popular street jams in the world, but it was un-Googleable until a week after the dust had cleared.


    



    Since pro-level scooters are so costly, many of the kids come from affluent backgrounds. Despite this, the scene feels decidedly DIY. Riders dress with a mix of grungy skater gear and a touch of Internet irony. One middle-school rider in Chicago wore a black cap with small text reading “Link in Bio.” Just like skateboarders, shredded jeans and dirty Vans are the style, but unfortunately for the burgeoning scene, it takes more than just streetwear to convince skateboarders who came of age during Razor’s initial boom that scooters are cool. Landing a backflip at a skatepark definitely turns heads, but a combination of entitlement and inexperience has made most scooter riders a bane to skateboarders, inline skaters and BMX riders.


    



    “There’s a stigma because of all the little kids,” says Daddono. “Every skateboarder will tell you that [scooterers] don’t look where they’re going, they’ll ride in front of you. They don’t have the etiquette yet.” Many simply never learn, which Broussard credits to a lack of guidance from older kids. “Skaters will complain about it, but they’ll never go up to 125cc 150cc Scooter riders and explain why what they’re doing is dangerous or bad park etiquette,” says Broussard. “But if it’s a young skateboarder, they’ll give them pointers and help them out. It’s a hypocritical attitude.”


    



    Pioneering riders like Daddono, 24, and Broussard, 31, turned to scooting because they felt skateboarding’s street credibility died with its commercial boom. Buying a board at the mall wasn’t rebellious. Instead, early scooter riders dug through garage sales for dollar scooters, took them to skate parks and rode them until they were literally destroyed – typically about an hour.


    



    “Skateboarding used to be anti-establishment, but now if you wear skate clothing, you’re trendy,” says Broussard. “Scooters started [out] punk-rock. The older generation couldn’t afford skateboards or BMX bikes, but we could dumpster-dive for scooters.”


    



    “Every skatepark I’ve been in, there’s always a skateboarder with a chip on their shoulder and are super mad,” says Szydlowski. “Skateboarders are trying to make themselves feel better, because they know that their sport is dying in a sense.”


    



    Although events like the Chicago Jam appeal to a younger audience, it’s the relatively older kids who play the starring roles. Mike Hohmann, a 22-year-old with frayed Kurt Vile hair, is a good bet to win prize money at any jam. He’s based in Florida but has spent the past six months couchsurfing between events across the country. In May, he won several hundred dollars for grinding a 30-foot rail called the Green Monster in Austin and had a similar payday in Chicago for landing a backside 360 bar twist down a dozen steps at Grant Park. Once Hohmann’s cash runs dry, he’ll return to Florida to work a pair of minimum-wage jobs to save for his next trip.


    



    “It’s the community I love. It doesn’t matter who you are, what you are, everyone’s a brother here,” says Hohmann.


    



    Scant documentation of the community has emerged outside social media, but the scene does have historians. One is Dylan Kasson, a professional rider for Proto who has photographed scooting for a decade and hosts a popular podcast, Tandem. He’s produced several photo books and is compiling a larger survey of the sport that he hopes to publish under the title The Scene.


    



    “Scootering is so new that it’s still in that stage where there’s a lot of untapped potential,” says Kasson. “Videos are the most important thing. That’s how people realize new tricks are possible.” 


    



    As documentation of the sport grows, so does the industry around it. As with skateboarding, apparel companies like Sky High have formed to serve the subculture. The 11th annual Scooter Con in San Diego boasted 1,500 attendees, and in October, Vault Scooters hosted the first-ever invitational competition, called Sovereign of Street, which had a prize pool of $11,000. Scooters are also a big part of Nitro Circus, an internationally touring stadium event with an emphasis on daredevil mega-ramps (it’s where Capron Funk landed that triple front flip).


    



    Even though it’s still a fresh industry, it might already be getting too mainstream for Broussard, who fears the popularity could ruin the rebellious character, just like with skateboarding.”The founding generation of scooter riders is drastically different than the current generation,” he says. “We rode because after the Razor boom, it was not trendy. We were experimental. Now, some kids spend more time accessorizing their electric scooter than riding them.”


    



    Rebelliousness was certainly on display in Chicago, however. It’s hard to call a mob of 300 kids riding into oncoming one-way traffic anything but daring. They were not only endangering their own bodies by running red lights and hurling themselves down stairs, but also destroying public and private property. The Most Disorderly Conduct Award went to a teenager who climbed to the top of a 20-foot wall overlooking a loading dock, then launched himself off it with a sinister grin, landing on the roof of a parked van and nearly causing the roof to cave in.

Benefits of Wrist Wraps Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:51 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

Benefits of Wrist Wraps


    Your wrists take quite the beating when lifting weights.  


    



    For most exercises, you will have a barbell or dumbbell placed in your hand.  Any slight deviation of the wrist either forward, back, or side-to-side, will cause additional stress at the level of the joint. 


    



    What you want to limit as much as possible are these wrist movements under load.  


    



    When you wear wrist wraps you create wrist stability and any movement of the wrist will be much more difficult.


    



    For example, in the bench press, you want to ensure that the barbell sits in your palm directly over your wrist joint.  As the load gets heavier, the wrist might cock backward, which will increase the stress for the entire kinetic chain, from your wrist, elbow, and shoulder. 


    



    By wearing stripes series wrist straps in this scenario, you have a better chance to keep the barbell stacked directly over the wrist without it flexing backward.  


    



    2. Gives You The Ability To Push Beyond Your Fatigue Limits


    When you’re training hard, you will push your muscles to their fatigue limit.  


    



    Not all muscles fail at the same rate though.  


    



    There is generally a cascading effect where your smaller stabilizing muscles will fatigue first, followed by your larger prime movers. 


    



    If you wear camouflage series wrist wraps , you can protect your smaller muscle groups from fatiguing quicker. 


    



    For example, in the bench press, let’s say you want to do an AMRAP set at 70% load (as many reps as possible).


    



    You’ll start the set with your wrist directly stacked over your wrist; however, as the set goes on, the smaller muscles in your forearm that help stabilize the wrist begin to fatigue.  As such, your wrist starts to cock backward.  Once those stabilizing muscle groups fatigue, other muscle groups need to work harder to pick up the slack.  


    



    Therefore, if you can keep your wrist stabilized longer throughout the set, you will likely be able to rep out an additional couple of reps because your system as a whole is working in unison with each other, not overcompensating for weaker muscle groups. 


    



    3. Allows You To Return To Lifting Post-Injury Quicker


    If you already have a pre-existing wrist injury, then wrist wraps might help you return to lifting a bit quicker. 


    



    Obviously, you’ll want to heed the advice of your medical doctor, as wrist wraps aren’t a magic cure to fixing injuries.  


    



    However, wrist wraps are a tool in helping people lift weights while experiencing some level of wrist pain or discomfort.  


    



    This is because pain is often caused by bending or flexing the wrist, and wraps can provide the rigidity necessary to keep the joint neutral. 


    



    Wrist wraps can make your hands stronger for any exercise that involves gripping, such as deadlifts, rows, chin-ups, etc.


    



    Try this right now: 


    



    Take your right hand and place the palm on the wrist of the left arm  


    Your right thumb and fingers should wrap around the left wrist 


    Squeeze your right hand as hard as possible


    Observe what happens to the fingers of your left hand 


    You should notice that your fingers on the left hand start to close.  


    



    This is the effect that tight thickened wrist bracers have on your grip.  


    



    When you wear wrist wraps your fingers will squeeze harder around the bar.  This is why you see some top-level powerlifters wear wrist wraps while deadlifting.  


    



    5. Makes The Weight Feel Lighter In Your Hand


    If your hands are tight around the barbell the load will feel lighter in your hands, which will build your confidence under heavier weight. 


    



    This happens because of the idea of proprioception, which is your body’s sense of the world, including the sense of muscle force and effort.  


    



    Our proprioception is activated by receptors in our skin, muscles, tendons, and joints.  So, when a barbell sits in our hands, it’s constantly providing feedback to our central nervous system to how the weight feels and where our body is in space. 


    



    You can increase your proprioceptive ability by creating rigidity in your muscles. 


    



    Therefore, if your hands are tight, the more proception you have and the lighter the weight feels. 


    



    However, if your hands are relaxed, the less proprioception you have, and the heavier the weight feels. 


    



    Because wrist wraps ensure the muscles in your forearm don’t fatigue as quick and helps grip the barbell tighter, it will help make the weight feel lighter in your hand while lifting. 


    



    Most wrist wraps made from blends are about $5-$10 more expensive compared with the cotton wraps. The additional cost is absolutely necessary if you want a high-quality wrap that will provide you with the needed support. 


    



    Like I said, my go-to wrist wraps are the Inzer True Gripper Stripes Series Knee Strap, which are made from 40% elastic, 10% polyester, and 50% cotton. There’s also a strip of rubber down the middle of the wrap, which grips your skin, ensuring that the wrap does not move once it’s secured by the velcro.


    



    There are several ways that you can wear wrist wraps depending on the benefit you’re trying to leverage the most.  


    



    For example, if you want to increase joint stability and increase your gripping strength, you’ll be required to wrap your wrist differently for these seperate purposes.   


    



    There are several benefits to wearing wrist wraps for bench press, including increasing joint stability, allowing you to push beyond your normal fatigue limits, keeping your wrist injury-free, giving you the capacity to grip the bar tighter, and making the weight feel lighter in your hands. 


    



    Beginner lifters don’t need to wear wrist wraps to start working out.  However, if you already have strength training experience and want to increase performance then wrist wraps should be an integral part of your lifting gear. 


    



    I am one of those cursed few who—unless snow is actively falling from the sky and I have been outside for more than two hours—always wants the area around me to be five degrees cooler than it is at any given moment. Nowhere is this more apparent than the gym, where a tough workout in what most would define as "room temperature" is enough to transform me into that one gym friend who looks like a walking puddle. And because my hands are not exempt from this indiscreet form of slipperiness, the single most important workout accessory I own—more than my phone, or my podcasts, or maybe even my shoes, honestly—are my trusty pair of wrist straps.


    



    The most common variety of a wrist strap is a set of two strips of cloth, each a little over a foot long, with a sturdy, stitched-in loop at one end. The opposite end goes through the loop, and the resulting circle then slides neatly around your wrist. Before each lift, you wrap the loose end around the handle of the weights as many times as possible and then tuck any excess beneath your fingers, essentially cinching your palm to the handle. Congratulations, you have just turned from a earnest, damp-palmed fitness enthusiast prone to slippage into a rock-fisted, steel-forearmed master of all that is grip.


    



    Wrist straps work by essentially shoring up the weak point in your grip—where your fingers meet—with an equal and opposite force. (Note that when wrapping, you want the loose end to go around the bar in the direction opposite your fingers. In other words, the back of your palm, which is hopefully impermeable, should be on one side of the bar, and the strap should be roughly parallel to it and winding around the other.) Think about the pulling exercises where, toward the send of a particularly onerous set, the benefit you're deriving from eking out those last few reps is perhaps diminished by your slowly-yet-inexorably-failing grasp on the bar—deadlifts, rows, lat pulldowns, pull-ups, shrugs, and the like. Taking a few seconds to lash yourself to the weight will help fight this fatigue, keeping your movement steady and stable and making the tenth count as just as valuable as the first.


    



    As in most things that you'll encounter throughout your fitness journey, wrist straps are best used in moderation. The forearm muscles that comprise your grip get worked every time you pulling a weight against gravity, and relying too heavily on straps risks weakening your unassisted hold on the bar. One way to avoid this pitfall is to use them only when you really, actually need them—that is, when you're in the gym and your grip is slipping—instead of automatically breaking them out the moment it's time for shrugs. Performing a few wrist curls or using a hand grip strengthener, too, can help ensure that the bottom segment of your arm gets gets just as wicked jacked as the all-important top one.


    



    Might you look a little goofy with frayed segments of canvas hanging from your wrists? Sure. But they just might make a meaningful impact on the efficacy of some of the weight room's most foundational exercises, and at only a couple bucks, it doesn't hurt to have a pair in your gym bag just in case.


    Wrist wraps are a great exercise accessory to keep in your gym bag. After all, they protect some of your most important joints (your wrists) while you lift. But a quick Amazon search produces hundreds of results — option overload.


    



    You'll probably even see a few wrist straps in your results, too. Not to be confused with wrist wraps, lifting straps twist around a barbell to improve your grip and don't actually support your wrist. Wrist wraps, however, are all about stability and joint support.


    



    Luckily, we've taken the confusing research out of your hunt. Browse our expert-recommended options and learn how to zero in on the best wrist wraps for your lifting workouts.


    



    If you want to give your wrists a little extra relief while you strength train, these supportive wrist straps can provide all the stability an everyday lifter needs.


    



    These are perfect for day-to-day, non-competitive lifting because they're easy to adjust and take on and off, according to Jereme Schumacher, DPT, a Washington-based doctor of physical therapy.


    



    You can also use these for extra joint protection when you play sports like tennis or basketball. You can even toss them on if you're planning to spend a long time typing on your computer — your wrists will thank you.


    



    Most of the best wrist wraps fit relatively stiff and snug, but these are more flexible, making them the best CrossFit wrist wraps you can buy, according to Schumacher.


    



    That's because CrossFit workouts involve a lot of different exercises, all of which demand different levels movement from your wrists. For instance, your wrists should stay pretty rigid during deadlifts, but need to bend during handstands.


    



    Fortunately, Gymreapers' wraps are both adjustable and flexible to accommodate both needs.


    



    For many people in the gym, grip strength tends to be a problem area with a lot of pulling exercises, like deadlifts or rows, according to Schumacher.


    



    While you don't want to neglect training your grip strength in your workout routine (wrist curls can help with that), these wraps have a built-in glove to give your grip a little extra traction.


    



    Plus, this wrap protects the skin on your hands from tearing and callousing as you lift.


    



    Providing more support than the average wrap, these are the best powerlifting wrist wraps you can sport, according to Schumacher.


    



    When powerlifting or otherwise moving heavy loads, it's best to seek max support for your wrist to help keep them injury-free. The extra wide, 18-inch band on these wraps offers the high level of stability needed.


    



    "When looking at wrist wraps for powerlifting, [look at] the length," he says. "They generally vary between 12-inch, 16-inch and 18-inch lengths and this affects the wraps' performance and feel [more on that below]. I recommend trying a few different types of wraps to see what works best for you." (Opt for longer wraps for more stability.)

The best smart lock for a keyless home Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:47 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

The best smart lock for a keyless home


    While traditional lock-and-key systems have improved over time, the basic mechanism hasn’t really changed since the first lock was invented more than a thousand years ago: A piece of metal that is just the right shape pushes pins inside a lock into the proper position, allowing the lock mechanism to turn. As a society, it’s been tough to replace a system that has worked reasonably reliably for literally a millennium.


    



    Updated September 1, 2021 to add a link our news story covering Yale Home's announcement that it was upgrading its Yale Assure line of smart entry locks to the Z-Wave 700-series. 


    



    You can thank the hospitality industry for finally pushing locks into the digital age. Hotels learned long ago that keys are easily lost, expensive to replace, and simple to bypass, as thieves can pick locks or simply make copies of a key to allow for unfettered future access. On the flipside, hotel guests have readily accepted key cards (and in some cases, smartphone-based solutions) as the primary means of getting into their room. The electronic solution is just so much simpler. Lost hotel key card? Replacing it is no big deal.


    



    But the biggest benefit of electronic entry systems is that they are highly configurable. Digital locks can be changed at a moment’s notice (which is why that old hotel key card in your wallet isn’t good for anything), and the property owner can generate a record of when each door was opened. In a more advanced setting, different keys can be generated for the same lock, so a homeowner can tell when each member of the family came in, or when the housekeeper arrived.


    



    Whether you have a teenager who tends to break curfew or merely want to give temporary access to houseguests, service providers, or Airbnbers, home use fingerprint lock are an incredible upgrade over the old way of doing things. Ready to make the jump to smart lock technology? Here are our top picks of the market at the moment. 


    



    Some will argue that we should have named the Level Touch our top pick in this category—it earned a higher score, after all—but Level treats iOS users better than it does Android users. Kwikset also ditches the old familiar keypad in favor of a fingerprint reader on its latest smart losck. This enabled the company to dramatically shrink the footprint the lock presents on the exterior side of your door. Kwikset also gives you the option of opening the lock with a conventional key, in the event the reader won’t recognize an authorized fingerprint (should your skin prune up after a dip in the pool, for instance). 


    



    Remember all those times you've reached your front door only to spend the next few minutes fumbling around for your keys? It's frustrating and it happens to us all. But if you're looking for easier ways to get in and out of your home, you might want to buy a smart lock.


    



    These smart home devices allow you to unlock doors from anywhere through an app on your phone, or they can open when you're in close proximity to your front door. While smart locks won't necessarily make your home any safer, they do allow for more control and efficiency. Not only will they make sure you never again have to drop everything in your hands to look for keys, but tuya smart door lock can lock and unlock your door from anywhere and extend digital "keys" to friends, family, caregivers or anyone else who regularly visits your home. 


    



    Sure, you can still use a regular ol' key to open a smart-lock-equipped door (or most of them, anyhow), but don't be too quick to discount the convenience of connectivity -- especially when your hands are full of grocery bags, squirming tiny humans or anything else that makes it tough to rummage around for your keys. And when you crawl into bed, only to second guess whether you locked the door or not, you won't need to throw on a bathrobe and stumble to the front door. You can just pick up your phone and check the lock status. 


    



    That said, not all smart locks are the same. There are keyless options, Bluetooth options, locks that use your fingerprint, locks that fit on your existing deadbolt and complete deadbolt replacement locks. It can be tricky to navigate if you're new to smart home tech. Here's a look at today's smart lock options, what you need to know before buying one and how to choose the right lock for your needs. 


    



    Models like the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock, Kwikset Kevo Convert and Sesame TTLOCK Smart Door Lock are designed specifically to clamp in place over top of your existing deadbolt hardware. All three work with a lot of standard deadbolt brands. In August's case, the compatibility ranges from Arrow Hardware and Baldwin to Defiant, Kwikset, Schlage and many more. (Here's August's and Kwikset's deadlock compatibility charts for more details.)


    



    With these retrofit setups, you get to keep the hardware already defending your door and add a layer of connectivity over top of it. This also means you get to keep your physical keys. Retrofit smart locks are the simplest way to add connectivity to your door without replacing your entire deadbolt system.


    



    The other option is to replace your existing deadbolt altogether. The majority of smart locks take this approach, including the Schlage Sense Bluetooth Deadbolt, the Kwikset Kevo and the Yale Assure SL Touchscreen Deadbolt. There's even an "invisible" smart lock called Level Lock that is just a deadbolt replacement, so you can keep your existing hardware.


    



    Locks like these will take a little more time and effort to install, but it's definitely doable for a novice DIYer. Since most locks are entire deadbolt replacements, you're going to have significantly more options if you go this route. Similar to the retrofit versions, you just need a screwdriver and about 20 minutes. Just remember to make sure that your door is smart-lock compatible before buying in. 


    



    Another tip: Snap a picture of your existing setup before you begin, so you can reverse the install if you run into any unexpected issues with the new smart lock. A new deadbolt may mean a new set of keys (unless you choose a keyless model), so everyone in your family who wants a physical key will need a copy of the new one.


    A smart lock needs to be able to communicate with the rest of your smart home setup and with your phone. Most will do that using one of three common communication protocols: Bluetooth, Z-Wave or Wi-Fi.


    



    There are pros and cons to each, so you'll want to be sure to understand the differences before making a purchase.


    



    Bluetooth


    Examples: August Smart Lock, Poly-Control's Danalock (Bluetooth version), Schlage Sense Bluetooth Deadbolt, Kwikset Kevo, Friday Lock


    Bluetooth is a common smart-lock protocol because it doesn't burn through battery life as quickly as Wi-Fi does. After all, it's not like you can plug your deadbolt in, and who will remember to change the batteries on a door lock? With Bluetooth, your lock's batteries should last a year or longer.


    



    The downside to Bluetooth is that your range is somewhat limited — roughly 300 feet in a best-case scenario, and probably a lot less than that depending on how your home is laid out. It's enough to control your lock while you're at home, but wander too far afield and you'll lose the connection.


    



    READ MORE:


    Smart security buying guide


    Security camera buying guide


    You won't have to guess who's coming to dinner with these smart doorbells


    Something else to keep in mind is that Bluetooth locks will connect directly with your phone or tablet. You don't need any sort of hub device to act as translator, since your phone already speaks the language. That's convenient if your smart-home aspirations end at your lock, but hubs grant you the ability to control multiple connected devices from a single app, which can be more convenient than dividing home control among an assortment of device-specific apps.


    



    There are still some neat integrations available with Bluetooth-only hotel smart door locks, though. For instance, the August lock has an opt-in auto-unlock feature that's tied to your phone's Bluetooth. Lock your front door, leave home, then return within Bluetooth range, and your front deadbolt will automatically unlock.


    



    If you want to control your lock remotely, adding passcodes or letting people in while you're away, you're going to need a Z-Wave hub or Wi-Fi-connected smart lock.


    



    Z-Wave


    Examples: Poly-Control's Danalock (Z-Wave version), Schlage Camelot Touchscreen Deadbolt, Yale Real Living Touchscreen Z-Wave Deadbolt


    Z-Wave smart locks are available from brands like Schlage, Poly-Control and others. Unlike Bluetooth locks, Z-Wave locks don't connect directly with your phone. Instead, they'll need to connect to a Z-Wave-compatible hub. That hub will translate the lock's Z-Wave signal into something your router can understand — once it does, you'll be able to connect with your lock from anywhere.


    



    Samsung's SmartThings and the Wink Hub are two examples of Z-Wave control hubs. SmartThings in particular works with a bunch of third-party Z-Wave locks, from Kwikset and Poly-Control to Schlage and Yale. (Here are the complete lists of SmartThings- and Wink-compatible locks.)


    



    The range of a Z-Wave connection is about 120 feet, so the lock will need to be at least that close to the hub — though additional Z-Wave devices can act as range extenders by repeating the signal from the hub and sending it further. The Z-Wave signal can bounce up to four different times, for a maximum range of about 600 feet (walls, doors and other obstructions will all take a toll on range).


    



    Some Z-Wave locks like the Schlage Camelot Touchscreen Deadbolt ($239 at Walmart) don't offer their own app — instead the interface for the lock will pop up in the app of whatever Z-Wave hub you use. This can either leave you feeling disappointed that you don't have detailed, dedicated settings for your lock, or happy to not be downloading yet another app with yet another log-in. Again, it's all about preference here.


    



    Z-Wave's biggest setback is the requirement of an additional hub to talk to Wi-Fi. The plus side is that you can connect to more third-party devices than a standard Bluetooth lock — if you have SmartThings or another hub. But, if you don't plan to use a bunch of other devices in conjunction with your lock, Z-Wave may not be right for you. 


    



    Wi-Fi is available as an optional add-on with some wooden door hotel locks. For August's line of locks, a $79 August Connect plugs into a power outlet and bridges the connection between the Bluetooth August lock and your Wi-Fi network. The same goes for the $100 Kwikset Kevo Plus. Once you've plugged in these accessory devices and made that connection, you can control your lock from anywhere with an Internet connection.


    



    In 2020, August released a smart lock with Wi-Fi built in. Schlage and Kwikset are also ditching Wi-Fi modules, so I'd advise against filling up another outlet in your home with a Wi-Fi module if you aren't dead set on a specific smart lock. That said, built-in Wi-Fi will likely drain your batteries quicker than Bluetooth, so stock up on the required batteries. 


    



    With Wi-Fi enabled, you can lock and unlock your door remotely, create new users or access codes from anywhere and view your lock's status and activity log. Connecting your smart lock to the internet with Wi-Fi is going to give you the most options for features, including integration with Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa. 

What Are the Different Types of Lifting Hooks and Sling Hooks? Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:43 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

What Are the Different Types of Lifting Hooks and Sling Hooks?


    Are you planning your next overhead lifting project and need to specify the type of sling and rigging equipment you’ll be using? While it’s important to understand the best type of 

sling to use, it’s just as important to select the right type rigging hardware that will be connected to that sling. Choosing the right type of lifting hook that can be used will be 

determined by a number of different factors.


    



    In this article, we’ll discuss the different type of G100 sling hooks that exist, including: eye 

hooks, clevis hooks, swivel hooks, hooks with latches, sorting hooks, foundry hooks, j-hooks, grab hooks, and barrel hooks.


    At Mazzella, we offer all styles of lifting slings, rigging hardware, wire rope, overhead cranes and hoists, hoist parts, and engineered below-the-hook lifting devices. Our goal for 

this article is to help you select the right type of sling assembly for your future lifting and rigging needs.


    



    If you’re looking for more information on the advantages/disadvantages between wire rope, chain, and synthetic slings, we also have an article on how to choose the best lifting sling 

for your application.


    



    There are two main ways a lifting hook or G100 self-locking hooks can be attached to the sling—you 

can either use a hook with an eye at the top, or with a clevis at the top to make your connection to the sling. There are also hooks that have a bearing or bushing at the top that swivels. 

We’ll dive a little deeper into all three of these styles below:


    



    Eye Hooks


    On an eye hook, a chain or fittings are welded for a permanent connection to the sling. With an eye hook, you get far more flexibility in terms of movement and ergonomics to position 

the hook and attach it to the load. However, an eye hook is a permanent solution—if the throat of the hook becomes stretched, cracked, or bent during use, the whole sling would have to be 

failed out upon inspection and removed from service.


    



    Clevis Hooks


    A clevis fastener is a fastener system consisting of a clevis and clevis pin. The clevis is a U-shaped piece that has holes at the end of prongs to accept the clevis pin. The clevis pin 

is similar to a bolt, but is only partially threaded or unthreaded with a cross-hole for a split pin. A clevis hook is a hook, with or without a snap lock, with a clevis and bolt or pin at 

the base. The clevis is used to fasten the hook to a bracket or chain.


    



    Some rigging shops and end users who are not certified to weld alloy chain slings, utilize clevis hooks to make a mechanical connection to a chain sling. The advantage of a mechanical 

connection is that if a clevis hook becomes damaged due to stretch, bending, or cracking, it can easily be removed and replaced without scrapping the entire chain sling. If this occurs on a 

chain sling, this is considered a repair to the sling and must be proof-tested prior to the sling being put back into service.


    



    Also, a clevis hook can pivot side to side for positioning when connecting to a load, but doesn’t have the same flexibility or freedom of movement that an eye hook does.


    



    Swivel Hooks


    There are two types of swivel hooks and the user should be aware of the type of swivel hook that they’re using prior to lifting a load into the air:


    



    Positioning Swivel Hook – This type of hook swivels to allow the rigger to properly align the hook during connection to the load. This type of hook is NOT designed to rotate while 

under load and is only to be used when you need to position the hook onto the pick point.


    True Swivel Hook with Bearing – This type of swivel hook has a bearing inside that allows the hook to rotate freely under load. The top fitting swivels and pivots to allow the load to 

rotate to prevent twisting of the rigging.


    



    When deciding on whether to use a hook latch or not, careful consideration must be given to the specific lifting application. The use of latches on hooks is a topic that is constantly 

up for debate in the lifting and rigging industries. While some people argue that hook latches are always required and should always be utilized, others argue that latches are not required.


    



    Unfortunately, there are limited explanations or interpretations of when a latch on a hook must be utilized. With no clear industry-wide rules on whether a hook latch is required on a 

crane hook or a G100 grab hook, the decision is ultimately left up to the owner or end-user. 


    



    As an organization, Mazzella recommends that hook latches should be used. When we train our employees and inspectors on the use of hook latches, we take all of the following into 

consideration:


    



    Any hook that is designed to have a latch, should have the latch installed


    New slings are sold with the latch installed unless the customer requests no latch


    If customers make an inquiry about the use of a latch on a hook, we may recommend for them to consider several OSHA standard interpretations, among them the following:


    The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 also contemplates that, in the absence of a specific OSHA standard addressing a hazard, employers are required, by the statute’s 

“General Duty Clause” (Section 5(a)(1)), to protect employees from serious recognized hazards. OSHA often considers the provisions of industry consensus standards, such as those published 

by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) or the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), when evaluating whether a hazard is “recognized” and whether there is a 

feasible means of abating that hazard.


    One such provision that OSHA would consider is Section 2-1.14.5, Hooks, of ASME B30.2- 2001, Overhead and Gantry Cranes: “Latch-equipped hooks shall be used unless the application 

makes the use of the latch impractical or unnecessary.”


    Or the following OSHA standard interpretation may be referenced: The requirement for safety latches (AKA throat latches) is only specified in OSHA 1910.181(j)(2)(ii), which states that 

“Safety latch type hooks shall be used wherever possible.”


    Or the following OSHA standard interpretation may be referenced: Whether OSHA requires a safety latch on a

G80 self-locking hooks
depends on the activity for which the sling is being used.


    We advise that the end user must evaluate the work activity with regards to the safety of their employees. If the activity makes the use of the latch impractical, unnecessary, or more 

dangerous, then the end user may choose to eliminate the latch. It is also recommended that each lifting activity is considered independently as far as the use of a hook latch is concerned.


    



    All hook manufacturers make products with or without latches. Some hooks are compatible with self-closing latch kits so that a latch can be added at the time of the sale or post-sale.


    



    There are two types of hooks that rarely utilize a latch assembly due to the nature of the lift or the environment where the lift is being performed:


    



    A sorting hook will never utilize a latch kit. They’re typically being utilized for lifts with tip loading or where a latch would limit the practical use when lifting plates and 

cylindrical loads (such as pipe) where full throat engagement is required.


    A foundry hook rarely utilizes a latch kit because they’re often used in environments or applications where there is a clear danger for a worker to reach up to connect the load or 

remove the load from the hook.


    The one disadvantage of a hook with a self-closing latch is that they have a much shorter life span than a positive latching hook. One thing to consider when buying a hook with a latch 

kit is to understand if it’s an imported or domestically-made product.


    



    Imported rigging products are attractive because they’re often less expensive than a domestically-made product. However, if the latch breaks on an imported hook, it can be very 

difficult, or expensive, to find a replacement latch kit. You may even wipe out the initial cost-savings by having to buy a completely new hook because you can’t source the replacement 

latch kit.


    



    For domestically-made hooks, you can contact the manufacturer or distributor directly and they can provide you with the exact replacement latch kit part # and get you a replacement kit 

at a fraction of the cost of a new hook.


    



    A positive latching hook is a hook with a latch that is a more robust and engineered component of the hook. The advantage of a positive latching hook is that it’s nearly impossible to 

break the latch on these hooks and once it closes, it can’t open again until the load is released from the hook.


    



    These types of hooks are close to standard on chain slings because they’re more robust and can handle heavier-duty environments and lifts where chain is the preferred sling medium.


    



    Sorting hooks, also known as “lay out hooks” or “shake out hooks,” are used to sort or lay out products like flat plate, pipes, or other tube-shaped objects. They’re used in 

multi-leg sling assemblies for applications where the object or item will engage to the full depth of the throat of the hook.


    



    Sorting hooks must be used at a 30° to 45° angle to get full engagement—if the load is not fully engaged with the throat opening, significant reduction to the Working Load Limit of 

the hook can occur.


    



    Sorting hooks are one of the few types of hooks designed not to use a latch. The use of a latch would limit the practical use of the hook when lifting plates and cylindrical loads where 

full throat engagement of the hook is required.


    



    A sorting hook is NOT the same as a pelican hook. Many customers mistakenly refer to a sorting hook as a “pelican hook.” However, pelican hooks are used in nautical and marine 

applications and are not rated to perform overhead lifts.


    Foundry hooks are typically used on chain slings and are designed with a wide deep throat to fit trunnions and handles on molds or castings for foundry work.


    



    Foundry hooks are most commonly designed to be used without a latch, because they’re often used in high-heat applications where there is a clear danger for a human to reach up to 

connect or remove the load from the hook.


    



    Due to the environments they’re used in, foundry hooks are often used in applications where tip loading is necessary.


    



    J-Hooks are most often used in industrial and manufacturing applications. They have a low-profile and slimmer design than traditional sling hooks, which allows them to be used with 

chains, hoists, and slings to efficiently move materials in applications where a sling hook, grab hook, or foundry hook would not be suitable.


    



    J-Hooks are often used with eye bolts or an engineered lifting point on a load. A low-profile tip and throat can fit in much easier than a larger sling hook or foundry hook for a 

positive connection to the load.


    



    J-Hooks are often custom-engineered for the specific application and are most commonly used without latches, but latch kits are available. The eye at the top of the hook can be 

configured in a variety of orientations depending on the application. “Style A” and “Style B” J-Hooks have an eye that’s parallel with the rest of the hook, while “Style C” J-Hooks 

have an eyelet that is perpendicular to the hook body.


    



    Because J-Hooks have less material than standard G80 grab hooks, they have a lower Working Load Limit than 

most other types of hooks.


    



    Grab hooks are designed with a special narrow throat used to “grab” and shorten or hold a length of chain used in tie-down applications and in load-rated lifting slings. The throat 

engages the chain between the links for quick non-slip handling. Grab hooks are manufactured to be used with a specific size and grade of chain. There are two types of grab hooks, so the 

end-user should understand what type of grab hook they’re using prior to lifting a load into the air:


    



    Standard grab hook – Becoming less common, the “non-cradle” grab hook is most often seen in tie-down applications. When using a standard style grab hook, it is important to be aware 

of any reductions in working load limit (WLL) that the hook manufacturer may require based on usage configuration. When using a “standard” grab hook, most manufacturers require a 

reduction of 20% of the WLL.


    Cradle grab hook – The “cradle style” is replacing the “non-cradle” or “standard” grab hook for most applications due to its improved support of the engaged chain link. This 

additional support of the engaged link often means there is no reduction of working load limit (WLL) when used as designed. Always follow manufacturer recommendations for all lifting 

products.


    Barrel Hooks are used for lifting barrels or drums. They have a wide end point that goes under the lip of a barrel or drum and are used in conjunction with a multi-leg sling assembly. 

Typically used in conjunction with a pair of slings and are designed to be utilized at 30-45° angles.


    



    When it comes down to it, the most important part of determining what type of hook to use for an overhead lift is to ask yourself, “how am I connecting to the load?” Will the load 

have eye bolts, swivel hoist rings, engineered lifting points, or will you be using shackles to connect the hook to?

A Brief History of the Disposable Coffee Cup Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:37 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

A Brief History of the Disposable Coffee Cup


    It's what you walk away with after the first financial transaction you make every day. It's the bane of clumsy interns in offices from Seattle to Key West. And it's left its mark on your car dashboard, your favorite pair of work pants, your waistline—and American culture.


    



    Yet you've probably never given a second thought to that lowly vehicle of caffeine consumption, the disposable coffee cup.


    "A lot of people would be surprised to learn how many choices went into that cup of coffee they're buying," says Matt Fury, director of coffee at Think Coffee.


    Just Add Water


    If you're really going to trace the history of coffee drinking, you have to begin with the history of water drinking. And if you're going to follow the history of polycarbonate coffee cup, you have to begin with the history of disposable water cups.


    



    That story begins at the beginning of the 20th century with a man named Lawrence Luellen, a Boston lawyer and inventor. Since the end of the Civil War, plain old drinking water had become increasingly popular, thanks to the growth of the temperance movement. Temperance activists had dotted cities with water fountains and traveled from bar to bar in temperance wagons, offering water as a healthy alternative to beer or liquor (and giving rise to the term "on the wagon" for reformed alcoholics). Whether people drank water from a fountain, barrel, well, or wagon, they passed around a cup of metal, wood, or ceramic.


    "The communal cup was literally a bucket of water that people would dip out of," says Susan Strasser, author Waste and Want: A Social History of Trash. "If you don't know about germs, then that's an OK solution."


    Separately, however, more and more Americans were learning about the germ theory of disease. Luellen, who was one of those people, was distressed by the now-obvious health hazards posed by a communal cup. In 1907, he invented a paper cup—almost more of a paper bag at that point—that didn't have to be shared, and that could be thrown away after use. He called it the Health Kup, but changed the name five years later to that of a popular line of toys, Dixie Dolls.


    By the time the U.S. had entered World War I another five years after that, disposable culture already had a clawhold on American culture.


    



    "Before that, everything was used and reused," Strasser says. "People used broken crockery all the time. Even for very upper-middle-class women, when you cleaned the table, you saved the food on the plates. People shared all kinds of ideas for how to repair glass. Clothing was used and reused."


    



    Then, in 1918, the Spanish flu swept in. The epidemic killed anywhere from 50 million to 100 million people around the world, or about one of out every 20 people on Earth. In the U.S., nearly one in three people was infected, and over half a million died. Suddenly, a healthy fear of germs wasn't just for hypochondriacs anymore. Disposable cups were here to stay.


    



    Things Get Heated


    Obviously, though, we don't drink coffee out of Dixie cups today. The 1930s saw a flurry of new handled cups—evidence that people were already using paper cups for hot beverages. In 1933, Ohioan Sydney R. Koons filed a patent application for a handle to attach to paper cups. In 1936, Walter W. Cecil invented a paper cup that came with handles, obviously meant to mimic mugs. By the 1950s, there was no question that disposable coffee cups were on people's minds, as inventors began filing patents for lids meant specifically for coffee cups.


    But the Golden Age of the 280ml polycarbonate water cup seems to have been the '60s, when four major things happened: the foam cup, the Anthora cup, the tearable lid, and 7-Eleven.


    



    Michigander William F. Dart and his son William A. Dart had been experimenting with an expanded polystyrene, a substance that companies had been struggling to find a practical commercial use for ever since it was developed in 1954. The Darts started trying to assemble a machine that could manufacture expanded-polystyrene foam cups in 1957.


    "It was a very experimental material," says Chrissy Rapanos, senior market research analyst at what's now known as Dart Container Corporation, which makes 70 percent of the world's foam cups. "People were trying to use it as insulation for baby bottles, as shampoo bottles, even flower pots."


    In 1960, the Darts shipped their first batch of styrene cups to a paper-distributing company in Jackson, Mississippi. For the next two decades, foam cups increasingly became the choice for coffee.


    



    Coffee cups were also starting to get attention for their aesthetics. In 1963, a Czech immigrant named Leslie Buck designed the iconic Anthora cup for Sherri Cup of Connecticut. The instantly recognizable design—blue and white with bronze lettering, with an ancient Greek theme (Buck named it "Anthora" because he mispronounced the word "amphora&quotWink and the words "We Are Happy to Serve You"—became a constant of everyday life in New York City, with a 1995 New York Times story declaring it "the most successful cup in history."


    (It's also extinct: Sherri Cup was later bought by Solo Cup, which was in turn recently bought by Dart. The original Sherri machines used to make the Anthora cup were thrown out. Though the Anthora design can be special-ordered, it is now printed on slimmer, taller Solo cups, rather than the squatter cups New Yorkers remember, according to Melissa Dye, product manager of the Solo division of Dart.)


    And in 1964 on Long Island, N.Y., convenience chain 7-Eleven became the first chain to offer fresh coffee in to-go cups. The company quickly expanded to-go coffee to the rest of its Northeast chains, and then nationwide.


    Toward the tail end of the decade, coffee lids began to come into their own, too. In 1967, Philadelphian Alan Frank filed a patent for a tearable coffee lid, finally acknowledging that Americans were drinking their coffee as they walked.


    "We've always been a nation on the go, on the run, in a hurry, and since the Boston Tea Party, we have been fueled primarily by coffee in that rush to wherever we're going," says Mark Pendergrast, author of Uncommon Grounds: The History of Coffee and How It Changed Our World. "So it's really quite natural that we would want coffee to go."


    Throughout the '70s, as styrene cups invaded our desks and car cup holders, disposable-coffee-cup innovation seemed to hit a relative lull, with the most exciting developments taking place with lids—most importantly when it came to to-go drinking. In 1975, for example, the pull-back tab was invented, building upon Frank's tear-away lid.


    



    Yup, Starbucks


    The '80s, however, saw a second renaissance of disposable coffee cups, despite the fact that Americans were actually starting to buy less regular coffee. Instead, they were drinking cappuccinos, lattes, cafe mochas—specialty coffees that often included a frothy crown. To maintain that signature topping, to-go cups now had to come with domed lids that not only kept drinks hot, but also left headroom for the foam. Inventors responded appropriately: In the '70s, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office had received nine patents for coffee-cup lids. The next decade, 26 came pouring in.


    



    "Even something like the humble coffee lid—everything is designed to an incredible degree," says Louise Harpman, a New York City architect who, along with business partner Scott Specht, owns the largest collection of coffee-cup lids in the world.


    For many fans of practical design, the apotheosis of the coffee-cup lid came about in 1984, when Solo filed the patent for the Traveler lid, which combined a sleek, functional look with a lid domed enough to accommodate specialty drinks, a protruding rim that helped cool coffee before it reached the drinker's mouth, and even a depression in the middle so the drinker wouldn't have to smush his nose against plastic every time he took a sip. (In 2005, the Museum of Modern Art added the Solo Traveler lid to its permanent collection.)


    Meanwhile, as the coffee-cup lid was having its decade in the sun, the styrene foam cup was going through dark times. The environmental movement was no longer a niche philosophy, and mainstream Americans were finally absorbing the concept of conscientious consumerism. Styrene cups began a decline, and polycarbonate wine glass staged a comeback.


    



    But the pivotal moment in the war between foam and paper came about in 1987 and can be summed up in a single word: Starbucks.


    That year, the new owner of Starbucks, Howard Schultz, had to choose what sort of disposable to-go cups his stores would carry as they underwent massive planned expansion throughout the U.S. Just like other purveyors of drinks like cappuccino, he knew he needed lids that could hold but wouldn't crush the foam atop the company's frothy drinks—those domed lids that were suddenly popping up in cafés everywhere. Solo made just the kind of domed lids he needed—but they only fit on Solo paper cups. So Starbucks went with paper—and the styrene foam cup has never recovered.


    How Cosmo Kramer Changed Your Morning


    In the '90s, safety became the predominant theme. As paper cups became standard again, the downsides of the material became apparent as well—styrene was a much better insulator. Consumers began double-cupping their hot coffee, which was not only environmentally wasteful but cost stores twice as much on cups as they expected.


    



    In 1991, Portland, Oregon, dad Jay Sorenson had an epiphany about making paper cups safer when he spilled hot coffee on himself while dropping his daughter off at school. So he invented the Java Jacket, an insulated cardboard sleeve that slides over a paper coffee cup. Paper-cup manufacturers, meanwhile, developed double- and triple-walled cups that improved insulation.


    In 1994, the infamous hot-coffee lawsuit, Liebeck v. McDonald's, was decided by a jury. Albuquerque grandmother Stella Liebeck was in a parked car, trying to add cream and sugar to a coffee she'd just bought from a McDonald's drive-through, when the styrene foam cup spilled the hot liquid on her, giving her third-degree burns and sending her to the hospital for eight days of skin grafts. The jury awarded Liebeck $2.86 million. America, and American coffee stores, took notice. So did comedians: A year later, a lampoon of the case was immortalized as an example of a frivolous lawsuit on Seinfeld.


    "It's a shame this woman was so ridiculed, but maybe in the end some good came of it, and some cups are more safe," says Susan Saladoff, an Oregon attorney and filmmaker who produced the documentary Hot Coffee about the incident and subsequent legal case.


    



    In recent years, the two themes that seem to have emerged in coffee-cup design are conscientious and experiential.


    



    Florida inventor Tim Sprunger falls firmly into the latter category. He's invented the Arom-Ahh!, a coffee lid that takes advantage of that insight from the designer of the Solo Traveler in 1983—i.e., people have noses. He inserted a compartment into disposable-cup lids to enhance both the smell and taste of hot coffee, making beverages smell like nuts, fruit, even cheese—or sometimes just more like coffee.


    "I can make Starbucks coffee taste better than they can," Sprunger says.


    



    On the other hand, Fury of Think Coffee has emphasized compostability in his ice cream cup, with his stores using cups from U.K. firm Vegware, while encouraging people to bring in reusable cups.


    "The future will be semi-reusable," Fury says.


    



    The rise of reusable to-go cups, like Australia's KeepCup, would bring the story of disposable cups back to the pre-Dixie-cup days in a nice, neat circle, but don't count on it. Disposable coffee cups are here for good, says food historian Cory Bernat, who co-curated the Smithsonian National Museum of American History's American Food & Wine History exhibits.


    "When I look at food culture, it's all about habit, and businesses have a lot more influence over our behaviors than we like to admit," she says. "I see companies that are very quick to reassure people it's OK to ask for convenience, and people who are very quick to accept that offer. People just want this thing out of their hands in the easiest way possible."

Flexible Metal Hoses: An essential guide Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:32 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

Flexible Metal Hoses: An essential guide


    A metal flexible hose is a type of piping used to connect two distant points to transport or transfer fluid. In Oil & Gas applications hoses are used when there is a considerable relative movements. A variety of fluids and fluidized solids can easily be transferred through flexible hoses to other locations. These are most commonly known as hosepipe. Along with loading and unloading services in processing plants, these are widely used by homeowners as garden hose. Normal Flexible hoses are made of non-metals like soft plastic material or synthetic rubber. However, flexible hoses of chemical industries that are designed to absorb pipe movements are made of metallic materials.


    



    Flexible hoses are moade by extrusion or vulcanization process. To add strength to the non-metallic flexible hoses, they are reinforced using a crisscrossed grid of fibers combined together through braiding, spiraling, or knitting. These reinforced hoses can be long enough. Basically, flexible hoses have four parts; inner tube, reinforcement, End fittings and protective outer cover.


    



    A corrugated hose is constructed with a bellow of very long length. Fundamentally, the behavior of a corrugated flexible hose is the same as the bellow expansion joint. The flexible hose has to resist the hoop pressure stress, but cannot sustain the longitudinal pressure stress. Also, it has a tendency to squirm under internal pressure. To resist the longitudinal pressure stress and prevent squirm, corrugated hoses are often constructed with braids wrapping around the outside surface as shown in Fig. 4. The braided cover also protects the corrugation from scratch and wear. The braided hose, similar to a tied expansion joint, cannot accommodate any axial movement. On the other hand, the un-braided hose can sustain very small internal pressure.


    



    Due to the lack of a limiting mechanism, a corrugated tube connector metal flexible hose is prone to abuse. It should not be bent beyond its acceptable range. For braided hoses, the situation is even more critical.


    



    As the corrugations are not visible from the outside, a braided hose does not show immediately when damaged. Therefore, for manual handling in such situations as loading/unloading and switching operations corrugated hose is not suitable. The corrugated flexible hose has a continuous metal wall thus making it pressure-tight. It is suitable for handling any type of gas and liquid as long as it is compatible with the hose material.


    



    An interlocked hose is constructed with links that are kept tight with packing material. There are clearances provided between the links that afford the capability of accommodating some axial movement. As the hose is being bent, the clearances gradually close. The hose becomes stiff and cannot bend any further at a certain point when the clearances are completely closed, . This sudden stiffening effect serves as a warning to the handler, preventing the interlocked hose from being over bent. This automatic warning feature makes the interlocked hose especially suitable for manual handling.


    



    The packing mechanism at the interlocked links does not offer a perfect seal. Therefore, the interlocked hose is satisfactory for carrying low-pressure air, steam, and water, but is generally not suitable for conveying gases and “searching” liquids such as kerosene and alcohol. The outside of the interlocked hose is relatively smooth, making it easy to handle without any covering.


    



    The inner cone with outer thread connector metal flexible hose assembly is normally not analysed. In most of the situations, the end displacements from piping or equipment connections are calculated from stress analysis software and those values are transferred to the vendor for their consideration. Accordingly, the hose length and installation space are determined.


    



    Pipe Supporting for optimum flexible hose working


    A piping system which utilizes fexible metal hose to absorb pipe movement must be properly anchored and guided to assure correct functioning and maximum service life of the metal hose assembly. The following basic principles should be observed:


    



    The direction of pipe motion must be perpendicular to the centerline (axis) of the hose.


    To prevent torsional stress, the pipe shall be anchored at each change of direction where a flexible metal hose is employed. Typical examples of correct and incorrect guiding are shown below in Fig. 5.


    



    Flexible Hoses are used to accommodate piping and equipment displacements. Hoses being extremely flexible, installations is very easy. However, a few general precautions should be exercised during installation to avoid hose failures.


    



    While installing flange connector metal flexible hose, the allowable minimum bend radius is the most fundamental limitation. For interlocked hoses, the limiting radius depends largely on the clearances between links. It has less to do with the stress and fatigue, so it generally has only one limiting radius for all applications. For corrugated hoses, on the other hand, the limiting radius depends on the stress at the corrugations. For pressure hoses with braided reinforcement, the corrugation stress comes mainly from the bending of the hose. Therefore, the corrugation stresses can be controlled by setting a limitation on the bending. In other words, the installation is acceptable if the hose is not bent beyond the limiting radius. Similar to the situation discussed in the bellow expansion joint, the mode of failure of the hose corrugation is due to fatigue. Therefore, the bend radius limitation depends also on the number of operating cycles expected. Most manufacturers provide two limiting radii, one for static application involving a one-time fit-up installation, and the other for operational movement involving many cycles of intermittent flexing. The whole design and installation process actually ensure that this minimum radius is maintained during the initial layout and throughout the operation.


    The article describes various types and sources of flexible metal hoses (FMH) vibration. Depending on the direction of vibration displacements, basic variations of sleeves vibration are identified: transversal, longitudinal and torsional. The distinguished forces, that excite vibration in FMH, acting on it, are divided into static and dynamic loads. The most common type of vibration - transverse vibration of flexible sleeves is considered in more details. Also, the ripples - one of the main causes of transverse vibration, which significantly degrade hydraulic performances of pipeline communications, are investigated. The paper presents the analysis of characteristics of the bending and longitudinal stiffness, which implies that the stiffness increases with increasing internal pressure, the diameter of the sleeve and the number of braids. To determine frequency characteristics of FMHs, the bar, with reduced parameters of elasticity and mass, has been chosen as FMH mathematical model. The research results of an influence of various factors on the metal sleeves eigenfrequencies have been studied.


    The first step in alloy selection is to determine the source of any potential corrosion. While corrosive attack may be initiated by the media running through the metal hose, it is also possible that corrosion can initiate from external sources.


    



    External corrosion


    



    If a hose assembly is used in a potentially corrosive environment, then it should be made using an alloy that is resistant to the corrosive agent unless it can somehow be shielded from exposure to that corrosive. This can be tricky, as many covers do not provide adequate corrosion protection, and may even exacerbate the problem. For example, there have been instances where flexible polyvinyl chloride (PVC) covers have been applied onto stainless steel-corrugated dock hoses as a means to protect them from the salt water environment. Over time, these covers can begin to degrade, releasing chloride-containing compounds that can attack the stainless steel hose. External corrosion can also be caused by media that drips or sprays onto the exterior surfaces of the connector.


    



    If the media being transferred through the hose or expansion joint is corrosive, then proper alloy selection is critical. Here, it is important to remember that although the product being conveyed may not be corrosive, it may contain impurities that can cause problems. A good example here would be steam transfer. Boiler water may contain various water treatment chemicals such as anti-scaling or anti-foaming agents, and water-softening chemicals, all of which can be corrosive if allowed to concentrate in the system. Natural gas may also contain sulfur-based impurities that can attack commercial stainless steels. This ‘sour gas’ can lead to critical safety issues if system corrosion results in gas leaks. A detailed analysis of the medium may be required in order to identify any corrosive impurities that may be present.


    



    Once potential corrosive agents have been identified, the next step is to determine which alloys will best withstand any corrosive attack. Most alloy producers provide detailed specification sheets for the alloys they offer that give valuable insight as to the suitability of a given alloy when exposed to certain chemicals. However, in corrosive applications, industry resources that show real-life test results might provide more reliable data. Various databases are published by organizations which perform corrosion testing on alloys, analyzing their resistance to different chemicals under various operating conditions.


    



    Some of these resources are referenced in industry standards and specifications. When using these databases, not only will you need to know the name of the chemical being transferred, but also the temperature and concentration percentage at which it is being conveyed, as these variables can have a dramatic effect on the corrosion rate. For example, sodium hydroxide is generally non-corrosive at low temperatures and concentrations, but becomes aggressively corrosive to stainless steel as the temperature and/ or concentration increases. This is also true for many water-treatment chemicals. Conversely, some chemicals may exhibit reduced corrosion at high concentrations, so caution is key. There are a few important considerations when consulting these corrosion resistance charts. First, they typically do not include any corrosion resistance data for name-brand chemicals or mixtures of multiple chemicals. If name-brand chemicals are being transferred, the chemical manufacturer should be consulted for corrosion resistance data. Secondly, certain corrosion resistance information may be product specific. In other words, corrosion charts that can be found in the back of catalogs for fittings, valves, pipe, etc. should not be used as a reliable corrosion guide for union connector metal flexible hose.


    



    While these charts are fine to use as a guide for the products in the catalog, they can be misleading. Although a chart may give an ‘acceptable’ rate of corrosion for those specified products, that same rate may not be acceptable for a flexible metal hose, which is formed using relatively thin-walled corrugated tubing. Incidentally, be wary of corrosion-resistance information found online and make sure that all data is published by a reliable source. Caveat emptor: Buyer beware, especially when the information is free. It is important to remember that, if a metal hose or expansion joint is attacked by a chemical, it is seldom because the alloy is defective. In most cases where corrosion is present, either the incorrect alloy was selected, or the alloy was exposed to unspecified chemicals to which it was not chemically resistant.


    



    “If the media being transferred through the hose or expansion joint is corrosive, then proper alloy selection is critical. Here, it is important to remember that although the product being conveyed may not be corrosive, it may contain impurities that can cause problems”

8 Benefits of Owning a Dehumidifier Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:28 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

8 Benefits of Owning a Dehumidifier


    If you commonly get allergies, you know that they can get rather miserable at times. When you live in a humid climate, there are many triggers for these things—dust mites, mold, mildew, and seasonal allergies. If you find that you are suffering a lot, a good dehumidifier can help–in more ways than one. Here are some benefits of a dehumidifier and how to choose the right one for you.


    



    Allergy Triggers Thrive in Humidity


    Many of the most common allergy triggers, especially dust mites, mold, and mildew, thrive in humid environments. Whether you live in a humid climate, or you just have a living space that tends to be more humid, you may be suffering from these things. Small living spaces with limited ventilation, such as bathrooms or kitchens in a small apartment or basement apartments, are common areas where moisture can build up, even in dry climates.


    Mold allergies are also a significant contributor to childhood asthma, which can be a debilitating and costly disease for children who develop it at a young age. This article expands on some of the dangers that allergens present when they are in your home.


    



    Benefits of a Dehumidifier


    There are several benefits to getting a commercial dehumidifier in your home, basement, apartment, or office space.


    



    Dehumidifiers reduce humidity levels, making your home less hospitable to allergens such as dust mites, mold, and mildew.


    They are not disruptive to your daily life, and run quietly and efficiently in the background without most people even noticing.


    Dehumidifiers help reduce odors that can accompany mold and mildew in your home—getting rid of that “musty” or “rotting” smell.


    These devices help to reduce the possibility that you will develop mold on your clothing, furniture, and other linens (such as curtains or bed sheets).


    Dehumidifiers reduce irritation to your skin and your respiratory system, allowing you to breathe easier and feel comfortable in your home.


    A less humid environment in your home means clothing will dry faster, breads and cereals will remain fresh longer without getting stale, and you won’t find signs of rust or corrosion on things like computer equipment, electronics, and tools.


    Running a dehumidifier helps reduce dust in your home, so you won’t have to clean as often.


    A dehumidifier also lowers energy costs because it helps your air conditioner run more efficiently. When the air in your home is more humid, the A/C must do the function of cooling the air and removing moisture, which means it has to work harder. This also causes your A/C to wear out sooner, which means you will need to replace and repair it more often.


    



    In addition to suffering from constant symptoms of allergies, you may want to consider a industrial dehumidifier if you have some obvious signs of high humidity in certain rooms or areas of your home, including:


    



    Water stains on the walls or ceilings of your home


    High humidity rooms with poor ventilation or no ventilation (especially in areas like bathrooms that have no windows)


    Frequent condensation on the windows in certain areas of your home


    Small black spots (mold spores) growing on the walls or in areas with high humidity, such as the bathtub or shower


    Must or mildew smells


    You may also want to consider a dehumidifier if you live in an apartment building, since mold and mildew spores can travel through ventilation systems, and can build up in the walls between apartments. Even if you keep your living area clean, these allergens from other areas of the building can be harmful to yours and your family’s health.


    



    Choosing a Dehumidifier


    There are several different options when it comes to dehumidifiers, and the one you choose depends on the space in which you plan to use it, as well as the humidity levels. There are small capacity models for a single small room, large capacity models for larger areas such as a large room, basement, or an apartment, and there are whole-house models available as well if you live in a very humid climate, you suffer from significant allergies, or you have a large home. For more specific and unique needs, consider purchasing a dehumidifier with special features.


    



    Getting a dehumidifier can help you live a healthier, happier life, so if you are suffering from allergies and other symptoms, the answer to the question of whether you should own a dehumidifier is probably yes. Find out more about the different models and options available, and see which one will fit your budget and help you get clean, healthy air in your home.


    



    If you live close to the equator or near a coastal region, you probably hear your local weatherman say the word "humidity" all too often. But no matter where you are, you've surely experienced it -- that muggy, heavy feeling that fills the air, often when it's rainy, foggy or hot outside. It can make your hair frizzy and may seem to dampen everything, including your mood.


    



    When people complain about humidity, for the most part they're talking about relative humidity. Depending on temperature, air can hold a fixed amount of water vapor; relative humidity is the ratio of actual vapor in the air to this fixed amount. For example, at a temperature of 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius), one cubic meter (35 cubic feet) of air can hold about 18 grams (.6 ounces) of water. This would be a state of saturation, otherwise known as 100 percent relative humidity.


    



    That's a lot of jargon to describe a level of humidity that, for many people, can feel extremely uncomfortable. When this humidity seeps into your home, it can make rooms feel stuffy and perhaps even smell musty. Beyond these superficial discomforts, too much humidity can have some more serious disadvantages, too. An overly humid home can lose its structural integrity, attract pests like silverfish and centipedes, and even make you sick.


    



    In an average home in which the temperature is 68 degrees Fahrenheit, the relative humidity should ideally be between 30 and 50 percent. If you're struggling to reach that range, a dehumidifier may come in handy. Dehumidifiers remove excess moisture from the air, improving the comfort and health of your home.


    



    In this article, you'll learn what types of dehumidifiers are available and how you can get the best results out of the ceiling mounted dehumidifier you have. But first, read on to next page to find out exactly how a dehumidifier does its job.


    



    Imagine enjoying a soda during a particularly warm day. When you pick up the can, you might notice that it's wet -- there's moisture on the outside. Why is that? As air loses heat, it also begins to lose its ability to retain moisture; the colder surface pulls and collects water from the warmer air, creating condensation. Your dehumidifier does pretty much the same thing. Most dehumidifiers can be broken down into five component parts:


    



    FanCompressor -- This compresses and expands a refrigerant gas like freon to cool the dehumidifier's coils. (See How Air Conditioners Work for a more detailed explanation of this cycle.)


    Reheater -- This captures and collects heat that the cooling process generates.


    Compressor cooling coils


    Reservoir


    How do all these parts fit together to pull moisture from the air? It's fairly simple, but very effective:


    



    A fan collects air from the surrounding area and pulls it into the dehumidifier.


    As the air passes through, it comes into contact with the dehumidifier's cooled coils. These coils use condensation to pull moisture from the air. The collected moisture remains on the coils and drips into the dehumidifier's reservoir.


    The dehumidifier reheats the air and exhausts it back into the room.


    A dehumidifier usually has a removable plastic bucket for a reservoir; most buckets also have a place where you can hook up a hose so the collected water can drain straight into a floor drain or pump. This frees you from having to remember to dump out the water. But don't worry too much about the reservoir overflowing -- home dehumidifier also have an automatic shut-off. If you're using a dehumidifier in extremely moist conditions, however, or if you need to keep your dehumidifier on all the time, you should look into a unit with a built-in condensate pump, which regularly pumps water out of the unit's reservoir rather than simply relying on gravity to empty it as a hose does.


    



    Many dehumidifiers also have a humidistat, which allows you to set your desired level of relative humidity. A humidistat has two parts: a sensing element and a relay amplifier. The sensing element includes two alternate metal conductors, and changes in relative humidity will cause electrical resistance between those conductors. The relay amplifier measures this resistance and sends a signal to turn the dehumidifier on or off. These basic components add up to a device that may make your home feel a whole lot better.


    



    Now that you know the basics of dehumidifier technology, it's time to learn about different kinds of dehumidifiers. Which one may be right for you? Read on to find out.


    



    While refrigerative dehumidifiers may be the most well-known, desiccant dehumidifiers also do a great job of keeping a space nice and dry. True to their name, these dehumidifiers pull in air and pass it over a desiccant material such as silica gel. Desiccants naturally absorb moisture -- that's why you'll find little packets of silica gel in new shoes or electronic goods. Because desiccant dehumidifiers don't need to cool air before dehumidifying it, this technology is really ideal for sub-zero conditions.


    



    Since the technology behind them is so simple and effective, dehumidifiers mostly vary in size and strength. Portable dehumidifiers are the kind that you usually see in the home improvement aisle; they're often plastic, relatively cheap and very lightweight. They're designed to be most effective in smaller spaces like a bedroom or kitchen. Restoration humidifiers are heavy-duty machines that can withstand harsh conditions -- they're usually used to repair heavy water damage caused by hurricanes or other natural disasters.


    



    The largest models on the market, whole-house dehumidifiers, usually augment a home's existing heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system. You'll have to hire a professional to install one of those. Some manufacturers have also created specially sized crawlspace dehumidifiers to address the humidity in storage areas and powerful dehumidifiers that are targeted toward the high humidity created by some indoor pools and spas.


    



    Whichever kind of dehumidifier you choose, it may help make your home a little greener. Read on to find out how.


    



    A portable dehumidifier can consume 160 kilowatt hours per month (kWh) -- that's more than your refrigerator eats up. However, it does burn less energy than the average air conditioner, which tears through about 300 kWh per month. Also, since excessive relative humidity makes us perceive temperature as being higher than it is, keeping your home drier may lead you to reach for the thermostat less, which could result in lower energy consumption overall.


    



    To really save on your utility bills and diminish your carbon footprint, work on maximizing your dehumidifier's efficiency. Don't keep it on all day, set the humidistat at a reasonable level (50 percent rather than 30 percent), and keep your doors and windows closed when it runs. Most dehumidifiers discharge air from the top of the machine, but if yours does not have top-mounted discharge, make sure that it's placed well away from walls and furniture to keep air circulating freely. Keep it away from sources of excessive dust or dirt, since this can very quickly clog the machine. For that matter, be sure to check and clean your dehumidifier's filter regularly -- this will help ensure that it's operating as efficiently as possible.


    



    In addition to saving energy, you also might be able to recycle the water that your dehumidifier collects. The water that shows up in your dehumidifier's bucket is considered greywater. That means it's not suitable for drinking, but can be great for watering houseplants and flowers, since it's less salty than tap water. However, you should check first to see if there are any restrictions on using greywater in your area.


    



    While the benefits of dehumidifier ownership are many, there are some potential downsides, too. For one thing, cost may be an issue. Dehumidifiers can be somewhat pricey -- many models sell for more than $150. Or you may just object to having a bucket of standing water sitting around in your home. No matter what your reservations are, it's worth figuring out if you really need a dehumidifier before you take the plunge and buy one. Read on for some tips that may help you make that decision.


    



    Do you need a dehumidifier?


    Start by taking a look around your home. The most noticeable symptoms of excessive humidity may include wet stains on your walls and ceilings, rotting and weakened wood, mold and fungus, condensation on your windows, peeling wallpaper, blistering paint, and a generally musty, stuffy feeling.


    



    In addition to those somewhat obvious signs of humidity, there are also some more subtle conditions you can watch out for. For example, you may want to look into a purchasing a dehumidifier if your doors, cabinets or windows are sticking, or if your floors are especially creaky. When wood absorbs moisture, it swells. This pushes apart joints, loosens screws and nails, and generally compromises your home's strength. While your noisy stairs might be a simple nuisance now, if humidity is the underlying issue, your problems could get worse.


    



    Dehumidifiers can also help mitigate the effects of common allergies to dust mites, fungus and mold; if the air in your home is excessively moist, it can encourage the growth of these allergens.


    



    Even if you don't have allergies, preventing mold growth is a good reason to consider getting a dehumidifier. Mold only requires a bit of moisture to grow, and it can set up shop in your home as soon as one of its airborne spores finds a hospitably damp surface. A mold problem in your home can cause serious illness. And once it shows up, mold is a pain to eradicate and can permanently stain or damage whatever it's decided to live on. The easiest strategy is to just keep it from showing up at all.


    



    You can also use a dehumidifier to discourage insects from moving in with you. Roaches, silverfish, spiders and centipedes all love a moist environment. Keeping the air in your home relatively dry will drive away those unwanted tenants. Additionally, if you've got a cold or a particularly bad, congested cough, using a dehumidifier may free up your breathing and help you sleep better at night.


    



    As you can see, there are plenty of good reasons why you might consider using a dehumidifier. To find out more about these devices and related topics, follow the links on the next page.

Caught in the mushy middle: How Quartz fell to earth Posted by: llkktth101 - Yesterday, 08:18 AM - Forum: Forum Rules - No Replies

Caught in the mushy middle: How Quartz fell to earth


    The Atlantic wanted to corner a more premium space, selling marquee advertisers on a new generation of yacht owners and Rolex wearers. A free and digital Economist for the budding millennial business elite. The concept oozed an Obama-era ethos of global interconnectivity. “When you walk through a busy Asian airport, nobody is talking about or thinking about the American economy. The world has gotten much bigger than that,” David Bradley, then the owner of the Atlantic magazine, told the New York Times upon the launch of Quartz. Under the leadership of editor-in-chief Kevin Delaney, a former Wall Street Journal editor, and publisher Jay Lauf, formerly of the Atlantic, the project began with a staff of 20 journalists and four premium sponsors — Boeing, Cadillac, Chevron and Credit Suisse. 



    



    Staffers from the early years say that Quartz calacatta luxury was marked by a culture of experimentation and innovation codified by an internal buzzword — “quartziness” — a nebulous term loosely defined as the meeting of creativity, quirkiness and intelligence.


    



    In August 2013, when Steve Ballmer stepped down from Microsoft, Quartz’s headline highlighted the CEO’s personal windfall from the surging stock: “Steve Ballmer just made $625 million by firing himself.” The clever take helped Quartz’s version of the story rise above the rest in the early days of headlines engineered for the social web, where hundreds of thousands of pageviews, if not millions, hinged on framing. “That was a very archetypal way we responded to breaking news,” said Gideon Lichfield, then an editor at Quartz and now the editor-in-chief of MIT Technology Review. “We talked a lot in those days about ‘quartziness.’ To figure out the unexpected take or angle on something and write that.”


    



    A Quartz style guide from the time encouraged reporters to “write at the intersection of the important and the interesting” and to “think social.” Stories should fall on the “Quartz curve,” meaning either short (less than 500 words) or long (more than 800 words), but not in the middle, a rejection of the typical length of a newspaper story in the mobile-reader ecosystem. The newsroom eschewed “desks” or “beats” and organized around “obsessions.” Africa’s economy is a beat, according to the style guide, but Chinese investment in Africa is an obsession — a phenomenon shaping readers’ lives and industries. “Obsessions” shift, while beats remain constant, in theory making Quartz’s newsroom more agile but in practice also permitting reporters to be more scattered.


    



    Quartz quickly gained a reputation among media navel-gazers as one of the most forward-thinking newsrooms on the “future of news.” The company was regularly lauded across the trade press, including by Digiday, for experimenting with technology in ways both useful (compelling visual ads) and charming (a light in the newsroom letting staffers know when it was going to rain). 


    



    Before data-related editorial roles became industry standard, Quartz carrara melded the product into the newsroom, primarily through its “Things” team led by Seward. A combination journalism and coding squad, Things introduced a tool that allowed reporters to quickly publish their own crude charts. In traditional newsrooms at the time, placing a graphic into a story could be a time-intensive group endeavor. Given that a headline promising “one chart perfectly explaining” a certain topic was then a reliable traffic-generating trope, the tool allowed Quartz reporters to be more nimble and independent. Visuals and interactives spread across the industry, and Quartz helped set the standard for what digital business journalism could look like. In short order, the company was generating praise and awards.


    



    “One of the great things that Quartz did was really inspire newsroom leaders around the world to see news as a product and not just a chunk of text,” said Dan Frommer, a Quartz editor from 2014 to 2016 who now writes a newsletter called The New Consumer. “The fact that not only was everyone was allowed to — but was responsible for — their own charts led to a data and math literacy that a lot of places don’t encourage or mandate.”


    



    As Quartz’s profile grew, so did its traffic. Less than a year after launching, Quartz hit 2 million unique visitors and surpassed the Economist, a moment seen at the time as a changing of the guard. It signed on more advertisers like Ralph Lauren, KPMG and Rolex.


    



    Over the next few years, the Facebook referral gods delivered Quartz and a horde of other outlets booming traffic. The company expanded into new markets like India and Africa. By late 2015, it had a staff of 60 on the editorial side writing 50 to 60 pieces of content a day and was pulling in about 15 million monthly unique visitors. It dove into video and by March 2016, amid the video explosion on Facebook, reached 200 million views across platforms, the kind of milestone touted at the time by media executives who would later come to learn the fickle nature of Facebook video views. 


    



    Competitors for ad dollars saw Quartz as a model publisher. “When I was running Slate, I looked at them with admiration,” said Keith Hernandez, that site’s former president. For the first two years of the business, Quartz rarely made concessions on price, scoring CPMs of about $75, according to people familiar with the matter. Its in-house sponsored content unit worked with big brands to fashion custom, sharp-looking (and less intrusive) native and banner ads, rebuking IAB standard display ad units. When Quartz opened up its chart building tool to the public, GE was the founding sponsor. 


    



    The quality-over-quantity advertising mantra worked and Quartz’s prosperity reassured small and medium-sized newcomers that it was possible to score blue-chip clients with deep pockets. “There was a realization that the growth on Facebook was not going to be infinite, and that there might be a place for the middle class of publishing if you can create beautiful ads,” Hernandez said.


    



    Lost focus


    



    Quartz celebrated its fifth birthday in September 2017 amid a wave of optimism. “Quartz now reaches more than 100 million of you every month across various platforms. Just last month, our website had 22 million unique visitors,” Delaney wrote in a memo laying out the plans for the future. More expansion was on the horizon. There would be Quartzy, a new vertical expanding life and culture coverage, as well as Quartz At Work, to cover management and the workplace. An afternoon component was to be added to Quartz’s popular Morning Brief email. More video series would debut across Facebook, YouTube and Quartz’s site.


    



    Meanwhile, the ownership structure at Quartz’s parent company had changed. A few months earlier, David Bradley, the owner of Atlantic Media, sold a majority stake in the Atlantic magazine to Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple founder Steve Jobs. Quartz remained under the Atlantic Media umbrella, but Bradley made clear to those around him that the next generation of his family had no interest in becoming media barons. Speculation swirled that Quartz, an albatross around Bradley’s neck, was also for sale.


    



    Market forces were also starting to shift. Facebook, humbled by the press for its central role in the spread of misinformation, changed its News Feed algorithm in January 2018 to emphasize user content over publishers’. News companies coasting on the traffic bonanza saw their audience drop. Quartz, for its part, had experienced this kind of whiplash before. In the early days, the site picked up hefty referral numbers from LinkedIn only to have that evaporate when the platform pivoted to hawking its own content. Before the Facebook algorithm change, but especially after, publishers including quartz other marble copy renewed their interest in search optimization to diversify their referral sources. For legacy sites, returning in part to a Google-driven model was familiar. That’s how it was done before the Facebook gold rush (remember “What Time Is The Super Bowl?”). But Quartz had missed much of that era of media.


    



    “There was definitely a point where the shift in our referral traffic left us not entirely sure what the levers were,” said Kira Bindrim, Quartz’s executive editor.


    



    A slow contracting began on the business side. Native advertising became increasingly competitive. Every publisher across the industry operated their own custom ad shop. Campaigns at Quartz, one former business staffer said, needed extensive paid budgets to ensure traffic. “For a brand, getting some award because of a nice looking campaign — the value of that has diminished,” said the former staffer. “Brands aren’t willing to pay for that thing if it’s not really benefiting their business beyond sentiment. These were very expensive campaigns.”


    



    Quartz’s ad work is high-touch, custom and by its nature difficult to scale. “The composition of our advertising is still tried-and-true display units and content work. But we have over the years adopted more standard ad units,” said Katie Weber, Quartz’s current president who has been with the company since 2014. The site, for instance, now offers a 300 x 600 mobile IAB unit, something that it did not a few years ago. The move echoes other native digital publishers, like BuzzFeed, who were automated ad holdouts until about two years ago.


    



    Hernandez, formerly on the advertising side at BuzzFeed and Slate, said Quartz pushed the advertising envelope, but that it struggled to clearly define where it sat in the market. “Who were their competitors? Is it the Atlantic or Business Insider or are they up against the WSJ or FT? The answer was kind of ‘yes,’ so they became a smaller piece of the pie.” Brands today “love creative and the brand purpose, but at the end of the day they’re going to spend their money on things that work, and the things that work are Facebook and Google.” 


    



    The move to subs


    



    In July 2018, Quartz announced that it had been acquired by Uzabase for a price between $75 million and $110 million, based on future performance (final sale price: $86 million). Uzabase had reached out to Quartz for a content partnership, and the talks turned into a full-scale acquisition. It was a coup for Bradley. Sources with knowledge of the company estimated that he was able to basically break even. 


    



    Staffers were stunned by the acquisition. Few had ever heard of Uzabase, which owns the Japanese subscription service NewsPicks. “In Japan, people were really willing to pay for the NewsPicks experience, and there are so many different alternatives in this market,” said a former business side employee at Quartz. “Japanese culture has a different relationship with media and less competition. I could just never see it taking off in the U.S.”


    



    In late 2018, quartz pure color unveiled a paid membership offering — $14.99 a month or $99 a year — promising more content and events for Quartz devotees. Six months later it put in place a metered paywall. “The major change following the acquisition by Uzabase was to focus on building the subscription business,” Seward said. “There’s no doubt that having diversified revenue streams is critically important for us and any media business today. Any strong subscription business has only ever been built slowly and steadily.”


    



    Some reporters balked at the paywall and subscription model, as writers who want their work seen by the most possible people often do. Others felt like the job itself had mostly not changed. Newer features were given prominence, like “field guides,” deeply-reported stories about the state of an industry or topic. Today, the Quartz homepage appears more like a NewsPicks-style curation tool — highlighting stories from other outlets in addition to Quartz — than a traditional publisher homepage.


    



    As of the end of April, Quartz had 17,860 paid members. According to the latest Uzabase filing, the site makes $118,000 in monthly recurring revenue from subscriptions. “We’re covering the global economy for smart ambitious young professionals who want a more global view of business journalism than they get elsewhere, and trying to be as useful to that group as possible,” Seward said. Quartz is luring in new subscribers from places like its existing newsletter audience, according to Weber. She aims to grow the subscription revenue to 50/50 with advertising. “That doesn’t happen overnight and won’t happen this year,” Weber said.


    



    Quartz employees question their parent company’s patience. Uzabase said the goal for the restructuring is to “build a foundation for profitability between 2021-2022.” According to Uzabase’s 2019 financial report, total revenue at Quartz, which primarily consists of advertising, dropped 22% to 26.9 million last year from $34.8 million in 2018 . 


    



    Quartz today, current and former employees say, looks and feels a lot different. In the years since the acquisition, the company has shed some of the definitive products that made it a frequent subject for the media press. The Quartz app, an award-winning mobile news product in the style of a chatbot, was retired in 2019 in favor of a newer product built around the NewsPicks app infrastructure. It debuted with fanfare: “Quartz Pros” like Richard Branson and Sallie Krawcheck offered in-app commentary. But Quartz ended the contributor program and the service now looks like a typical news publisher app. According to Apptopia, the new Quartz app has been downloaded about 700,000 times since it launched in November 2018.


    



    As the culture shifted, the company in the past two years lost some of its key editors to places like The New York Times, Reuters, and Medium, sapping morale. On the business side, chief revenue officer Joy Robins decamped for the Washington Post. The newsroom also had to deal with two tragedies, the deaths of editors Lauren Brown and Xana Antunes, both from cancer. “Both of their deaths hit us really hard,” Seward said. “We felt those deaths the way a family would feel them. I was really proud of how everyone was there for each other.”


    



    In October 2019, the attrition culminated with the exit of Delaney, now an advisor and New York Times opinion section senior editor, and Lauf, who became chairman and later moved to an advisory role. “They were really the heart and soul of Quartz, and it could never be the same without them,” said one former staffer. Seward, a co-founder, was named CEO and Weber was promoted to president.


    



    Returned to unparalleled


    



    By March of this year, Quartz employees were bracing for layoffs. Two smaller rounds of layoffs in 2019 had already exposed some of the uncertainty surrounding the business. When the pandemic broke out, Seward indicated that cuts were on the horizon (at the end of last year, Quartz had 188 employees).


    



    The layoffs were deeper than expected. Management rejected offers from the Quartz editorial union to hold buyouts or a workshare program, tactics that had been utilized by other struggling news outlets in Covid-19 times. The company declined to comment on negotiations, but Seward said it made more sense to do one severe cut than several over a longer period of time. 


    



    For now, the layoffs have left staffers feeling dazed. Practically the entirety of Quartz’s geopolitics team was laid off ahead of an enormous political story. The award-winning video team was also shown the door. “None of the cuts we made were easy or obvious,” Seward said, adding that Quartz was proud of the quality of the video work but that it had never been able to figure out a way to generate significant revenue from it (particularly after Facebook curtailed its news video exploration).

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