Joe Seaman (IG: @joker_welding)

April 23, 2022

 

 

 

Welcome to this week's #weldershowcase - we had the opportunity to sit down with Joe from @joker_welding and talk a little shop.
 
If you would like to be featured in our weekly showcase (100% FREE) please send us an email to leo.benchmarkabrasives@gmail.com to get you scheduled in an upcoming week. These showcases are intended to highlight your skill, your business, and your tips and tricks.  Most of all it's to have a little fun!
Enjoy and Grind On!

 

 

 

Name:  Joe Seaman

Business Name: Joker Welding

Location: Lebanon, MO.

Socials: IG:  @joker_welding  FB: JokerWelding  TikTok: @jokerwelding

Specialties:  All of it.  I weld anything, and everything that comes into my shop.  I particularly enjoy the rat rod/custom side of the welding world.   It’s a challenge.  Something different than the normal ol “fix my brush hog” kind of jobs.

Tell us about yourself - what inspired you to get into your trade? And how long?
I’ve been in the welding game creeping up on 25 years! born and raised here in southern Missouri.  I got into welding because my grandfather and uncles were too cheap to buy new stuff on the farm.  So we repaired everything ourselves.   Started when I was around 14 or so I would guess.  Stick welding everything on the farm.  An uncle got me a job as a “welders helper” with him and I quickly realized I made half the money he did, and did twice the work he did!  So that kicked off my desire for welding.  Began traveling welding structural, transitioned into stainless steel pharmaceutical.  Met my now wife and stopped traveling, became a career fireman and did welding on the side.   Got out of the emergency services game a couple years ago to get back into my true passion of welding/fabricating!  They called me Joker at the firehouse, so now we have Joker Welding!
 
  What keeps you motivated throughout the day?
My family.  They mean the world to me. I want them to see our family work hard and be successful.  To get better everyday.  Challenge myself on doing something new/different.
What is your favorite shop tool and why?
My favorite shop tool right now has to be my new Milwaukee Metal Circular Saw.  Lightweight, portable, durable.  (Throw on a Benchmark metal cutting blade and roll on).
 
  What's your favorite piece that you've worked on?
I think that my favorite piece I have worked on would have to be a casket we built 100% completely from scratch.  It was for my best friends' soon to be father in law.  He was a CAT heavy equipment operator for decades.  He asked if we would build him a casket that looked like a CAT job box.  When he passed a couple months after this conversation I was approached, I didn’t think he was serious.  So we got after it!  Instead of giving flowers to the family, we added the locks.  His wife and three daughters each got a key to a lock.
If you could have any job as it relates to question 1 what would it be and what would you do with that?
Honestly, I feel like I’m living the dream as to what I’m doing.  If i could specifically do ONE thing though, I would have to say Dirt racing chassis.  My best friend owns the Lebanon Midway Speedway dirt track here in our hometown, you talk about a blast!  I sponsor a few cars so I do some stuff here and there with them, but doing up my own chassis sounds fun!
 
 
What BA product is your favorite and why?
I’m going to go with my flap discs here.  They are tough, priced right, and do an amazing job without disintegrating. Deal!!  
What BA product surprised you in terms of quality - what about it set it apart from the competition?
I don’t have a photo of me using it right off hand, but I would have to go with the blue 4.5” stripper disc.  I was using flap wheels to clean off mill scale and rust prior to finding those bad boys.   LOVE them!!
 
 
What tips and tricks do you have for us that might be different or eye opening for others to try with BA product?
Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and build some cool stuff!!   Cut it up, prep it, weld it, and then finish it out……all with BA products!
If there was one person you could collaborate with - who would it be and why?
I don’t have one person in particular, but several.   It’s kind of an umbrella statement.  Any of the old school hot rod/rat rod guys.  I’m talking about full blown custom fabrication of chassis and such.  Hanging plumb bobs, pulling strings, chalk lines.  Stuff that shouldn’t work, and making it happen.  
 
 
Do you have any advice for the next generation that you wish you had when you first started?
Never say no.  If an old timer says they wanna show you something, get over there and learn!!    Learn every single process, learn every single trick, learn learn learn!!   Nobody will be interested in the guy that can ONLY tig stainless, or can ONLY mig carbon steel.  LEARN IT ALL!
What are your future plans for your shop?
We are transitioning into a weld supply shop.  So hopefully I can find a good employee to hop in my truck and continue the portable jobs.  I can tackle the supply side of things and build cool stuff that I want to.  Then find somebody to run the office/storefront and I can just focus solely on building cool stuff!!   Keep bringing in students for our local vocational school to help them hone in their skills for their next step in life!
 
 
Thanks for sitting with us and sharing your story with the community - is there anything you'd like to add?  
Don't be afraid to step out of that comfort zone.  You fail at 100% of the things you DON’T do.   Wouldn’t you rather be 35-110 on “ideas” as opposed to 3-0 ?!!? That's my 2 cents..

 

A Note From Leo
Thanks for sharing your story with us, Joe!  I love the casket project and the lock idea for the family!!



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