DIY: Metal Rose

The DIY project that I attempted was to create a rose using only metal.  I had never worked with my hands very much before attempting this or worked with power tools at all, and had certainly never tried to create something using metal.  My main concern at the start of this project was the welding portion, and whether or not I would seriously injure myself in attempting this, as welding was required.  I was also concerned that I would not be physically strong enough to bend the metal or cut it into the shape that I needed it to be.  I was also not sure how the final product would look, since I do not consider myself to be very artistic.

Surprisingly, I did not actually have too many problems during this project, which I think was thanks in part to the fact that my fiancé was there to stop me before I did anything that could potentially harm me or my project.  I was also sure to wear proper safety equipment to prevent me from cutting or burning myself.  I ended up creating two different versions of the rose, both of which were comprised of several different tutorials that I found online.  I was able to find all of the materials that I needed at a Home Depot, and all of the tools that I used belong to my grandfather, including the welding machine.  The biggest problem that I encountered with this project was that when I was creating the flower part of the rose, occasionally you have to squeeze the bottom of it to create a tapered effect, and I found that I could not get it tight enough no matter how hard I tried.  So, this was the only thing that I was not able to do myself.

I was able to track down both video and text based tutorials which were created by a wide variety of individuals.  The best video tutorial that I found was created by a teacher, Mr. Byrom on YouTube, who I assume teaches some sort of trade class.  I also used the website Instructables, which has a large amount of DIY tutorials.  Most of the people who make tutorials on this website do not have any sort of biography about themselves or even use their real name.  Another resource I used was a website called ‘Welding Tips and Tricks ’ which included its own YouTube video that showed someone welding.  This website and video were obviously created by someone who had a firm grasp on how to weld, and had been doing so for quite some time.  For the most part the people who were making these tutorials seemed like they had a good idea about how to create this project, and at the very least had done it before.  It was easier to tell in the videos if someone was knowledgeable, because they used a wide variety of tools in a manner which proved that they had used them before.  This being said, the biggest resource that I used was my fiancé and my grandfather, who have both worked with metal and welding extensively, and who guided me through this project.

The guides that I found the most helpful were the videos.  I also found that if it was a text based tutorial, it made much more sense if it had a lot of good photos to go along with it.  The thing that was most helpful to me was having someone else with me, who was able to show me how to do something, and then watch me do it and give me feedback.  This is how I received my crash course in welding, by practicing on a scrap piece of metal until it was deemed satisfactory.  I found that getting immediate feedback was the best way for me to learn how to do something.  This is not surprising since the skill that I scored the second highest on in the multiple intelligences test was interpersonal, with the highest score being musical.  So, for me the way that was easiest to learn was either by watching a video of someone else performing a task, or having someone there in person to tell me what I was doing wrong.  In the end, I was very pleasantly surprised with how quickly I was able to pick up the needed skills, and with how well the final product turned out.

-Samantha Wise

Works cited:

3dfernando. “Make Yourself an Aluminum Rose!” Instructables, n.d. Web.

Collier, Jody. “How to MIG Weld.” How to MIG Weld. Welding Tips and Tricks, 27 Apr. 2011. Web.

Jaredzeuli. “Stainless Steel Rose from Scrap Metal.” Instructables, n.d. Web.

Noahw. “How to Weld – MIG Welding.” Instructables, n.d. Web.

TheMrByrom. “How to Make a Metal Rose.” YouTube. YouTube, 10 June 2013. Web.

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