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Querença: Wrought Iron and Loulé Copper

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Algarve Tour Travel Guide Presents Culture Tradition and craftsmanship of the Algarve photos:  Querença: Wrought Iron and Loulé Copper

Copper and Wrought Iron
Crash and shape the metal with Art

Forge iron and copper are hitting the activities with great tradition in the Algarve, who survive thanks to the commitment and dedication of some craftsmen.

You can still find Braziers that continue to shape the copper with the dexterity and imagination reminiscent of the Arabic influence in North Africa, or blacksmiths (now rare) which cause the gates and balconies of the caps to decorate, so majestic, the affluent homes.

In the art of hitting the copper, the creations are varied and very useful for everyday life, allowing you to create lamps, vases, flasks, coffee pots, bowls, pots for cooking special almonds Easter and the famous cataplanes, "ancestors" of pots pressure, where they cook the clams with pork and other delicious culinary specialties Algarve. Under the same utilitarian point of view, the work can produce vinegar, jars, jugs, funnels and windmills. Household items and decorative pieces, from a male craft of shaping the brass or copper, hammering them with wise precision to acquire the desired shape and can still be witnessed in the areas in Silves, Portimão, Tavira and particulary in Loule.

In Querença Tôr, Salir, Loulé, Portimão, Faro and 
Lagos the ironwork remain present in the vanes, the gates and railings on the balconies of some houses, which once was an outward sign of prestige and the wealth of those who lived there. Authentic works of art born from the hands of blacksmiths who still pride themselves on the ability to work out and cast iron with traditional processes.

Others in the mix of iron and fire are the tools of agricultural work, such as tools, the choppers, the troughs or the wheels of cars. Instruments adapted to life in the region, who have lost much of its social role, once important, when the industry has come, but you can still see and enjoy the Algarve more rural areas, particularly in the municipality of Monchique.

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Magniwork Energy internet scam

Internet fraudsters are raking in thousands of dollars a day with an elaborate scam selling magnetic perpetual motion machines that are claimed to produce infinite free energy.

Since spring this year an operation called Magniwork has been selling a $50 DIY guide to building a perpetual motion device at home. On their web-site the fraudsters claim the materials are available in any local hardware store for less than $100. One estimate puts sales of the guide as high as 5,000 copies a month, making the scam worth up to $3m a year.

The claims for Magniwork are advanced via an extensive Google advertising campaign, and a network of blogs, web-sites and reviews endorsing the product. They are given further credibility by a clip of film from Sky News Australia about plans for a similar product made by a legitimate if optimistic research company called Lutec. Lutec patented its technology in 19 countries in 1999, but the product has still not seen the light of day. Off-Grid has discovered that the clip is over 8 years old.

Perpetual motion machine

Magniwork which describes its product as ‘a magnetic power generator’ claims to have invented a revolutionary off-grid power source that uses magnets to “power itself and create energy by itself, without requiring solar energy, heat, water, coal or any kind of resource.” The web-site promises the device will generate perpetual energy which will “fully power your home for free.”

However even the idea of such a device is dismissed by trained physicists. “The little explanation they give on their website makes no sense to me,” said Gunnar Pruessner, a lecturer in physics at Imperial College London. “For starters it breaks with all we know about quantum physics since Dirac, which says that we cannot tap into zero point fluctuations or virtual particles.”

Priceless IP

He observed that if the claims were true, they would mark the biggest advance in science ever. “It would bring a world-wide socio-economic revolution with incalculable political consequences. So you have to ask why are they scuzzing around selling their priceless IP (intellectual property) for a few dollars?”

Made in Macedonia

The site gives no way of contacting Magniwork -other than to order the guide. But its legal disclaimer reveals that despite the .com web address which suggests a US-based company, Magniwork is in fact located in Macedonia, a tiny republic on the northern border of Greece in Europe. “This Agreement shall all be governed and construed in accordance with the laws of Macedonia applicable to agreements made and to be performed in Macedonia,” it reads. It has similarly proved difficult to identify the individuals behind the scheme. But one researcher claims to have written to the site’s web-master who referred in his reply to a man simply called “Igor”, the manual’s publisher.

Kernel of truth

Angry customers admit that the guide does contain kernels of truth. “Some of the suggestions in the e-book can reduce your home power consumption. For example, checking for air leaks, have better home insulation, servicing your air-conditioning unit or heate etc,”wrote one. But is it essentially amateurish and misleading, they say. “The whole “document” is 57 pages long and looks like something a kid in high school put together. The final “generator” is basically a magnet that is 2″ high sitting on a turntable that is 4″ high! They claim that its output is 24.5 Watts! That is 1/100th of what my house uses when the AC is on. It wouldn’t put out enough power to light up a standard light bulb,“ wrote another angry blogger. Fraudulent

Alternative energy expert Sterling D. Allan founder of The New Energy Congress has examined Magniwork’s claims. “Most of the 50+ page manual contains energy conservation tips that are based on well-established principles,” he said. But he points out that plans for the device are freely available elsewhere, they are based on other people’s work and he claims to have tried to contact people offering testimonials, without success. “The wording on their site still gives the reader the idea that the plans will result in a working free energy device but that is not the case. Such representation is fraud,” he concluded.

Although highly implausible, the idea of somehow harvesting magnetic power has intrigued scientists for over a century. It was first suggested by pioneering physicist Nicola Tesla in the nineteenth century. Australian company Lutec is still trying to perfect such a device. And U.S based based Magnetic Power Inc, headed by Mark Goldes, has claimed to be on the verge of launching a ‘Magnetic Power Module’ for at least six years. There is no suggestion that either Lutec or MPI are part of the scam.