Tiffany Noel Orff (@shopgirlvonorff)
Name: Tiffany Noel Orff
Business Name: Welding Women Syndicate
Location: Salinas CA
Socials: IG: shopgirlvonorff
Websites: Weldingwomensyndicate.com YouTube: Welding Women Syndicate
Specialties: Automotive Welding/ Fabrication, Custom Air Suspension, Welding Instruction, Social Media Marketing/ Advertising, Advocating for women in welding.
Tell us about yourself - what inspired you to get into your trade? And how long?
I jumped around from the corporate world for awhile and then real estate investment and other various small business but not necessarily feeling like it was where I should be. Plus, Always active in the custom automotive world and in a car clubs I kind of lived a dual life. I had a few life changes and a chance meeting with a custom suspension specialist/ welder who then ended up being my partner for almost 12 years. I co-owned the shop about a year or so and that is where the name “shopgirl” developed. I learned everything from welding set-up/ maintenance to fabrication and mig welding. Finally a place that I felt satisfied and a greater purpose. Working on cars and building… this was my intro into becoming formally trained later on, earning degrees, certifications and even a gold medal in welding. Those were the starting chapters for me to develop to Welding Women Syndicate.
What keeps you motivated throughout the day?
I love taking a customers idea and bringing it to fruition… whether its a custom automotive design, a marketing plan for the welding syndicate or a student having that “aha” moment. It fuels me to push through any obstacle I may encounter.
What is your favorite shop tool and why?
Depends on the shop… but my favorite tool to date was having a 50 ton scotchman ironworker in my classroom… Amazing tool that literally is like having an assistant to help prep for test plates, cut coupons and mass cut in minutes!
What's your favorite piece that you've worked on?
That's Easy! My favorite job was working on Gene Winfield’s 61 Cadillac. I helped replace and upgrade his custom suspension set-up in 2013.
If you could have any job as it relates to question 1 what would it be and what would you do with that?
I’ve had it… having my own shop is the best “job” for me. Working with my own set of ideas and helping others to learn while dealing with less political red tape is the best feeling in the world to me.
What BA product is your favorite and why?I’m a huge fan of your abrasives line… the 60 & 80 grit flap discs clean up heavy spatter and stand up to aggressive use. I’ve had them in class with students who were still learning how to use a grinder efficiently and they didn’t break down as quickly as other brands I’ve used.
If there was one person you could collaborate with - who would it be and why?I want to collaborate with Betty of @bad_betty_designs because she is my soul sister and we would make some rad art together.
Do you have any advice for the next generation that you wish you had when you first started?Learn as much as you can and apply it in real world experiences, then fine tune it to a point where you are capable of teaching it to the next generation. More seasoned teachers are necessary to teach the next generation not only welding/ fabrication but the experiences associated with applying them.
What are your future plans for your shop?Preparing to open a new, bigger, shop in the next few months where I can not only work on cars but to also hold larger workshops for women & today's youth. Doing my part on a larger scale to help normalize the idea of learning a trade and entering into vocational & technical schools as opposed to the traditional route of 4 year colleges.