Last night we did one up right: An after-hours, late-nite welding session here at Crisp Titanium. Some up and coming architects and designers from the Texas A&M College of Architecture tried their hand at titanium welding in the shop. With the exception of one, it was their first time to get a torch in their hands and feel the power (or the fear) of the arc.
Once they realized that there were no sparks involved and that it is pretty hard to electrocute yourself, they opened up and laid down some pretty nice beads. As my friend Tom from OTM Bikes once said, “welding is like a controlled brain seizure”. I thought that to be a fitting description as learning to tig weld can be a bit overwhelming in the beginning. The temperature, the pulse frequency, the speed, the filler rod, the hand motion…all of which can shut your senses down if you don’t take a deep breath and just go with it. Much like mastering a trap set: first high-hat, then snare, then bass, cymbal. At first you’re not really making much music, but then, all of the sudden, something kicks in.
The idea here wasn’t to turn out welders or fabricators (that may come later). My plan is to subject these enthusiastic kids to some new experiences while on their study abroad program. Maybe something inside will click at some later date for them, like in my recent post on the subject of welding. Worst case scenario is they see have fun piecing together some tubes and see what it’s all about. I think it worked out ok..as I type out this post another came back this morning and was waiting outside for me to open the shop so he could practice welding without time constraints. Extra points..but hey, give me that torch back, I have to get some work done here 🙂