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Teaching a craft, learning a trade

Myers mentors youth in welding

July 18, 2014
By Michael Tidemann - Staff Writer , Estherville News

Even Jakob Paulson's mom Theresa admits that anyone who would be willing to teach her son welding has a world of patience.

And that could describe Gary Myers who's been teaching 4-Hers - boys and girls alike - how to weld for quite a few years now.

Like clockwork, Myers has 4-H kids come into his garage where they cut and weld their hearts out as they ready their projects for the Emmet County Fair.

Article Photos

On Wednesday, Gary Myers, right, mentors Jakob Paulson with his welding project for the upcoming Emmet County Fair.
Photo by Michael Tidemann

This week Gary was mentoring Jakob, a member of the Center Champions 4-H Club, on the fine art of welding. This is Jacob's third year behind the helmet.

"He likes fire," Gary said of Jakob.

Gary came up with a design for a planter holder last year, something his daughter said she'd like to have. He made one he now uses as a prototype to teach 4-Hers like Jakob.

If some things in school didn't make a lot of sense before, they do now - like knowing there's a reason for pi - to measure the diameter of a circle then multiply it times 3.1416.

"Measure twice, cut once," Gary advises. And it's better long than short, of course, because you can always trim off a little.

Gary showed Jacob how to put a piece of wire in the end of his drill and the other in a vice and spin it, straightening it perfectly - quite a trick, when you consider any other alternative.

Pretty soon Jakob was going at it on his own, measuring, cutting, bending, welding, creating masterpieces from metal.

And if he decides on welding as a career, Jakob can expect to pull down $30,000 a year - and in short order. Pay shoots up considerably in Alaska, Wyoming and the North Dakota Bakken oil region.



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