From humble beginnings working for Ford straight outta school, Nigel Petrie is now claimed as one of Australia’s best fabricators. Just have a look at his Instagram, @engineeredtoslide, or hit up his website, engineeredtoslide.com, to understand why. From his ground up built Hilux drift car to his KTM powered land speed record holding salt flat racer, building and modifying anything automotive is second nature to Nigel and we don’t think he would be able to live without it.
From Geelong, Victoria, Nigel stopped into Rising Sun Workshop on the way to Day in the Dirt to run a fabrication introdcution with Travis, who is the brains and legend behind SWS. From 3D design and software parameters, SWS is at the forefront of digital welding technology and being Australian owned we were stoked to have his machines available on the night for members to start their journey on.
Starting off with brief introductions and the basics of how a Tig machine works, all 8 members were straight into feeding their rods and fusing materials together. They were all given aluminium, mild steel and stainless steel prisms to build. Where the intermediates started off strong the novices soon caught up and everyone was getting into the flow of it all. Both Nigel and Travis poured out years of welding wisdom to the class with pointers and encouragement alike and truly create a vibe that made this a super special event.
Basic welding often comes up for minor fixes to chopping and welding frames to most of our members, we never expected to see so much enthusiasm for this skill and, knowing there aren’t many informal options for novices to be introduced to the skill we made sure it was done safely with the guidance of two of Australia’s finest. Based on member feedback we’ll be running more classes with specialized skills like these. Clearly our members are keen to know more and we’re keen to make it happen. Watch this space.