PHOTO OF THE DAY
When the cadet blogger is photographed using a blow torch for the first time, it absolutely MUST be the PHOTO of the day! Isn't Sara the BEST? She is willing to try everything that the cadets are experiencing on the TS Kennedy...and I mean EVERYTHING.
I spent my day in the engine training space, and I can say that I learned a lot more than I thought I would. The first thing I learned today was how to piece together PVC Piping. These are the white pipes that are usually used for plumbing. At first I thought it was just as easy as connecting the pieces, but was I wrong. I found out that it is actually a five-step process. First, you need a plan of what you are trying to build and the measurements you’ll need. Then you have to cut the pieces of PVC according to what your measurements are. You cut these with a PVC cutter. The cutter looks like a pair of gardening sheers but are harder to use. Next you use PVC Primer. The primer is responsible for chemically breaking down the PVC to bond it with the other piece. Once this is done, you use the PVC Cement to solidify the bond and make sure it is watertight. The pipes need to dry to give the cement time to bond. Lastly, you do a water test. You hook the end of your pipes to a water source and then make sure it doesn’t leak.
This video will take you through all of the steps that Sara followed to connect her pipes.
Soldering was one of my favorite things I learned today. Soldering is used for connecting two metal pipes together using heat. The first step is to get your plan and measurements, then cut using a pipe cutter. Then you use a paste called flux to help speed up the melting process. Using a propane blow torch, you heat up the area you are trying to solder.
Hands-on learning has never been more exciting! Cadets used a blow torch to connect metal.
Once the area is hot enough, you place the tin on the area around the seal. Tin is used because of its chemical properties make the seal stronger. At first I was a little surprised when they handed me a blow torch but as I realized what I needed to do, it was very simple. The entire job took only five minutes.
Would you like to learn a brief history of the blow torch and use how to use them?
Of course you would!
Check out this video!
The highlight of my day, however, was making a picture frame. With the help of Lt. McClellan, 1/C Jack Mahoney (Hanover, MA), 1/C Chris Ames (Weymouth, MA) , 1/C Kevin Depersia (Brant Rock, MA), 1/C Michael Picard (Upton, MA), 1/C Courtney Tavares (Fairhaven, MA) and 1/C Sarah Monteiro (North Falmouth, MA), I made my own picture frame from scratch.
Lt. Katherine M. McClellan demonstrated how the cadets needed to measure and use a scratching tool. Lt.McClellan is a graduate of Massachusetts Maritime Academy.
We used two thin pictures of steel and one larger block of steel to make the frame. Using a ruler and a scratching tool, we drew a ½ layout line around the perimeter of the front piece and then a ¼ inch line inside that. Next we had to make our spots for the screws. We used a punching tool which creates a pilot hole to mark where we would be inserting the screws. We used a tap which is a tool used to create threads. Threads are used the lines used to screw bolts in place. We made 4 small tap marks where the lines intersected. Next we used a drill press to drill through the steel where the 4 marks were made.
On the back piece of steel, we used another drill press with a larger drill bit to make the hole to connect the stand to the actual frame itself.
Have you ever seen a drill press? This is the drill press that Sara used.
The longest part of the process was next, using a hacksaw to carve out the center of the steel. I watched most kids struggle with this part because everyone wanted their lines to be as straight as they could be.
Sara used a hacksaw to cut metal. A hacksaw is a fine-toothed hand saw. It has a C-shaped frame with a blade that it is under tension. For a standard size hacksaw, blades are available in both 10 inches and 12 inches. The pitch of the teeth on the blade can range from 14 teeth per inch to 32 teeth per inch. The type of hacksaw blade used is based on the thickness of the material that he or she needs to cut. The abbreviation “tpi” is used for “teeth per inch”.
Surprisingly, I was very good at making my lines straight so even though this took a long time, it was the easiest part for me. This made the edges rough, so we used files to smooth them out and make sure everything was level. I thought this was going to be a 30 minute project, but it took me an hour to finish just up to the filing part. I used sandpaper to scratch up the surface of the steel to give it a nice shine. Lastly, I had to connect everything together. Ninety minutes and four helpers later, my picture frame was done! I was very proud of myself for accomplishing it as I’m sure the other 4/C were.
Didn't Sara do a great job? There's nothing like that feeling of pride and accomplishment when you complete a challenging task!
Shout Outs To Our Followers...
3/C Cadet Blogger, Sara Merzon is sending out a huge hello to the homeschool followers from Wareham, MA, Westport, MA, Livermore, ME, Jay, ME, St. Louis, MO, Byron, GA, and Homestead, FL. She is hoping that you will share samples of the Follow The Voyage – Share The Experience curriculum activities that you have completed at home. All of the Chatwells employees are thanking the followers who are already working on the Chatwells Burger & Hotdog Mathematics Challenge which was posted on 1/24. They can’t wait to see your problem solving strategies. 1/C Jack Mahoney (Hanover, MA) sends a huge hello to the teachers and the entire student body at Center Sylvester Elementary School. He thanks them for following his final Sea Term aboard the TS Kennedy. 1/C Chris Ames (Weymouth, MA) is hoping that the students following from his hometown in Weymouth are working hard in their mathematics and science classes. 1/C Kevin Depersia (Brant Rock, MA) sends some Caribbean sunshine to the students following from his hometown of Marshfield. 1/C Michael Picard (Upton, MA) is sending a high five to the middle school and high school followers. He invites you to send any questions to him about Marine Engineering major to firstname.lastname@example.org. 1/C Courtney Tavares (Fairhaven, MA) and 1/C Sarah Monteiro (North Falmouth, MA) are sending out a high-five to all of the female participants who are considering a career in mathematics and science. Lt. Katherine McClellan is sending a high-five to anyone following from a vocational high school.
We are following your voyage from Rogers Middle School in Rockland, Ma! Very interesting photos and facts! We love following the voyage!