Thomas Patsis, AKA @coldhardart on Instagram, is the third member to join the Arc-Zone Pro Partnership. Thomas has not just one, but two pretty awesome jobs. In the day time, he works at Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) building 320 mph race cars that remain intact while 10,000 hp pumps through them!
Then at night time (and on the weekends), he works for his own company – Cold Hard Art, making truly amazing metal art. As you can imagine, this man does not get much sleep! With out further ado, we present to you…. Cold Hard Art.
Q: How old were you when you first got into welding and what initially sparked your interest?
A: I started learning to weld back in 2006 when I was 24 years old – Just thinking it would smart to perfect TIG welding.
Q: How did you get your training? Educational experience/work experience?
A: Well, I went to the University of Northwestern Ohio for automotive high performance / welding and alternative fuels. Today, I work during the day at Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) building race car chassis and all the other cool stuff that goes with a 320 mph 10,000 hp top fuel dragster (or funny car). After work, from 6:00 PM – to Midnight, I have my own metal art company called “Cold Hard Art” where I build hand-crafted replicas of peoples race cars, bikes, pretty much anything else!
Q: Where do you work now?
A: Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) and Cold Hard Art (CHA).
Q: What’s your favorite part of the job?
A: At DSR, I like being surrounded by racing people – talking about it and building it. And at CHA, I love seeing the places I can get my art to show up… Sometimes it ends up in a cool magazine, or even in a famous drivers home, or office.
Q: What’s the biggest welding challenge you’ve ever faced?
A: Antron Brown crashed a car in Atlanta this year and we had to build a new one to give him a back up car – in a week’s time…. that was a challenge. At CHA, I once had to build a replica of Michael Shanks race-winning Ford Prototype for a crew guy who was going to deliver it to him in less then 4 days – That was a tight dead line.
Q: What’s the most fun you’ve ever had working on a welding project?
A: Earlier this year at DSR, we had to build a one off Funny car simulator for an on-the-road display for NAPA. It was a lot of fun because we had to pack a huge TV sound system, computer, and shaker-system into spots where nothing but performance related stuff should be. For CHA, last year I got to build three stock cars for the Chad K. Knaus (Crew Chief for Jimmie Johnson), Michael Landis (Rick Hendricks right hand man), and Steve LaTarte (Dale Jr.s Chief).
Q: What kind of music do you listen to while welding?
A: I like to listen to alt. Rock stations from all over the USA… But normally my Zune plays Alt. Rock, Country, Comedy, Pop, Dub Step. But when I’m in the zone on a build at my shop, I hear nothing – even if it’s blasting at 54!
Q: And for the most important question…. Tell us what your favorite drink is?
A: MonaVie helps me going at night. It’s also ultra healthy, no time for getting sick…
Q: Do you have any hobbies on the side?
A: Sleep, because most people say they never have time for their hobbies… So I end up getting 5.5 hours of sleep each night.
Q: Where do you see yourself and/or your business in the next ten years?
A: I hope that I’ll be able to work on my Cold Hard Art, but on a larger scale… Both my parents own there own business, so that’s what I want to do.
Q: Who do you look up to in the industry?
A: Jesse James!! He started something from nothing, he’s very honest, innovative, respective, and still hard-working to this day.
Q: Last but not least, what advice would you give to folks just starting out?
A: Listen to people that have failed and to those who’ve had great success… You can learn a lot from both types of people. Oh yeah, and have great patience.
The entire Arc-Zone Team is incredibly excited for our upcoming projects with our Pro Partners, so stay tuned!
Be sure to follow the Arc-Zone.com Pro Partnership™ movement on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter at #arczonepropartnership.
If there’s a question we missed that you want to ask Thomas, just comment in the section below!