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What happens when bored around electronic repair gear...

Well, I'm writing about a modification that I got done about a month ago, my first brand done at home (well, kind of at home).
A little background that will give some idea of why the materials we used were used, I am on the USS Carl Vinson, and when we did the brand we had been at sea for 82 days consecutively, I hadn't been at home (Seattle, Washington area) for about 4 months. I was talking to a friend who works in another of the electronic shops on board, pretty much complaining that I couldn't remember the last time I had gone over a month without getting modified, and all of the great ideas I had for modifications I want to get done when we get home, and other things I would do if the Navy weren't so strict about body piercing (I'm running out of places to pierce that I can keep hidden, and they've already threatened to send me to captain's mast for the holes in my ears, since at ½ inch it is pretty easy to see through my lobes with no jewelry in.)
Anyway, I've started trying to find ways to tie different types of mods together, and one of the ideas I have is that I want to get a captive bead ring implanted in my inner forearm, and use that as the center of a sun, and get tribal sun rays branded coming off of it. He asked me if I thought it would hurt, which I figured yes, that it would hurt more than tattooing. He also asked how a brand will stand out on my skin, which I had to tell him I don't know...so he suggested that I get a brand done somewhere that is not public skin before going for my forearm, so I told him I'd thought of that and that I even had a simple design I was planning on getting some time after we get back on the ball of my shoulder.
I showed him the design I'd drawn up and he asked how they would make the brand with it not all connected, so I explained cautery branding to him, and he jokingly (at first) told me hell, I could do that for you with a soldering iron (yes, I know, probably not the best substitution, but it was just starting as a joke.) Well we went and smoked getting a good laugh over the though of him branding me with a soldering iron, and we started to talk about it more seriously, since he is the best artist I've ever met, and one of my best friends, I told him if he wanted to do it I would trust him to brand me.
We went to a few other shops looking for the right tip, and finally found a soldering iron tip that came to a very fine point, that hadn't been used (We were at least smart enough to use one that hadn't been used since solder does have lead in it which we both know is bad for the body, and the resin used can't be very good for it.) So, since we both worked nights, we had decided that I would go to his shop that night and we would do the brand there, and went to sleep.
That night when I got up I was already getting nervous, through my shower all I could think was "I can't believe I'm letting (friend's name left out by request) brand me with a fucking soldering iron). But I got into my uniform and went to work in my own shop like normal. At about 11:30 that night I told my supervisor that I was going to go have mid-rats and after eating, help my friend troubleshoot a piece of gear, since we had no work to do, and made my way over there.
At first we had to wait for one other person to leave his shop, since there are actually rules against performing body modifications, specifically tattoos and brands, on board...which I thought was odd, I've accidentally burned myself with a soldering iron at work several times, what's the difference between doing it accidentally, or on purpose.
Finally, it was around 1 am, and we were ready to get things set up. We put the new tip on the soldering iron and got it warming up, I pulled my uniform shirt off and set it on the chair behind me, and we used a disposable razor to shave the area. We then thought we should have an excuse for what we were doing if someone walked in, so we took apart an amplifier that we both would be able to explain something on if questioned, and would be a reason for us to have the soldering iron out. He drew the design on my shoulder, put in a cd, and got ready to burn the first line.
I was preparing for excruciating pain, but after he burned the first line, I actually had to look over at him and ask if that was it, and if it had actually burned me. It was less painful than getting a tattoo done... Neither of us having never been branded or having done a brand, we weren't sure, but thought that it had burned deep enough to leave a scar. After deciding that was going to be our basis for what a good line should look like he continued to do the brand. It took about 10 minutes to complete.
Right after we had finished and I pulled down my undershirt sleeve, in preparation to go smoke, the door opened...but luckily it was another of our modified friends. He was stopping by to ask if we wanted to smoke, and then looked around and asked what the hell we were doing, because amplifiers don't normally smell like burning flesh when you solder them.
Well, we were done with the brand, and the only aftercare I've ever been told for a brand is to obviously keep it clean and pick the scabs off of it the first few times they appear. I did this and after about 2 weeks, it was healed up, and most of it scarred decently.
We have decided that we are going to re-burn it, but decided to wait until we get home, so we can do it in my apartment, not have to worry about any one walking in, and that will give us time to get the cautery pen we ordered off of BME to show up. Once we get the brand re-burned, and I again have access to my own computer, there will be pictures posted.

Details

submitted by: Anonymous
on: 02 Jan. 2002
in Scarification

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Studio: USS+CARL+VINSON++ET+SHOP+1
Location: Arabian+Sea

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