WWW MCSMAG COM JUNE 2020 Mi T M DUAL PURPOSE EQUIPMENT INDUSTRY FORECAST COVID 19 IMPACT ON PROJECTS DISPUTE RESOLUTION KNOW THE PROCESS VERTICAL EXPANSION BUILDING UP
MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONDesign-Build Project SuccessTECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONSBenefits of Job Documentation TechTransforming Industry With AIMAINTENANCE SOLUTIONRivet Buster Best Practices14project profile Vertical Expansionbuilding on top of a building28JUNE 2020VOLUME 14 ISSUE 06Inside This IssueON THE COVERPhoto courtesy of Mi-T-M. The Mi-T-M pressure washer disinfectant mister combination comes in both a hand carry and portable model. This new combination series was introduced to help disinfect large areas quickly. Check out the cover story on page 22.www.mitm.com40special focusIN EVERY ISSUEIndustry News ............................ 08Modern Construction Products ... 64What’s Trending ......................... 66management solution Those Darn Boomer Part 2boomers’ impact in the workplacetechnology solution GPS Trackingreal-time data for optimal resource allocation across jobsitesproject profile Tufftec Lockersuniversity selects quiet lockers18maintanence solution Chipping Hammersproper use adds to tool life58tools and attachmentstechnology solution EPS InsulationQ&A with Insulfoam expert 42
Donna CampbellEditor in ChiefFrom the Editorwww.mcsmag.com P.O. Box 660197 | Birmingham, AL 35266DONNA CAMPBELL Editor in Chiefdonna@mcsmag.comMIKE BARKER Publishermike@mcsmag.com RANDY MOON Media Consultantrandym@mcsmag.comMICHAEL FISCHBACH Media Consultantmichael@mcsmag.com JOHN FRIEND Media Consultantjohn@mcsmag.comKEVIN MCCLARAN Media Consultantkevin@mcsmag.comLISA AVERY Art Directorlisa@mcsmag.comCRISTELA TSCHUMY Graphic Designercristela@mcsmag.com SETH SAUNDERS Digital Media Specialist email@example.comINGRID BERKY Office Manageringrid@mcsmag.comTIM GARMONCEORUSSELL HADDOCKPresidentCHRIS GARMONCFODONNA CAMPBELLVice President, EditorialTONYA BROWNINGVice PresidentSUBSCRIPTION inquiries or changes:205.380.2048No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage-and-retrieval system without permission in writing from the publisher. The views expressed by those not on the staff of Modern Contractor Solutions, or who are not specifically employed by Highlands Publications are purely their own. All Industry News material has either been submitted by the subject company or pulled directly from its corporate website, which is assumed to be cleared for release. Comments and submissions are welcome, and can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org.For reprint information, contact Chris Garmon at email@example.com.Canada Post Publication Agreement #41578525. Undeliverables 355 Admiral Drive, Unit 4, Mississauga, ON L5T 2N1@mcsmagModern Contractor Solutions MagazineModern Contractor SolutionsPROJECT PROFILESVertical Expansion .....................................................14Tufftec Lockers ..........................................................18EQUIPMENT SOLUTIONSDisinfecting Equipment .............................................22Field Welding ............................................................24MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONSThose Darn Boomers: Part 2 of 2 ...........................28Tech-Connected ........................................................30SOFTWARE SOLUTIONHere Comes 5G ......................................................... 34LEGAL SOLUTIONArbitration Expectations ............................................36TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONSGPS Tracking .............................................................40EPS Insulation ...........................................................42Moisture Meters ........................................................44SAFETY SOLUTIONSImpact of COVID-19...................................................48Social Safety App ......................................................50MAINTENANCE SOLUTIONSSealing Concrete .......................................................54Track Pads .................................................................56Chipping Hammers ....................................................58SUCCESS WITH TOOL AND ATTACHMENTSPart of productivity hinges on having the right tool or attachment and having the knowledge to use such things efficiently. Simulators are good for equipment and quick coupler attachments. For tools, it’s practice in the field with a good trainer or superintendent. In this issue of MCS, we feature some of the tools and attachments used in projects, and even feature a new app for social distancing on the jobsite. Kudos to Mi-T-M for using some of their equipment for other purposes, such as disinfecting equipment. You can see the ingenuity on the cover and read about the process on page 22. Whenever I travel, I love to see the cranes in the air. Be sure to check out the article on building on top of a building on page 14. Part two of Preston’s article on Baby Boomers is featured on page 28 and covers this generation’s impact in the workplace and the value they add on a daily basis. We need our baby boomers. The knowledge and work ethic they possess needs to be handed down to younger generations. As business owners in the construction industry, having a diverse mix of employees where the older experts can teach the young newbies a trick or two would be advantageous to ultimate success. This channel of learning is a two-way street. As technology becomes more mainstream in the construction world, the young tech-minded construction workers can share up the chain as well. Be sure to read the articles on technology (pg 30) and 5G (pg 34). We are still dealing with COVID-19. For potential impacts on the construction industry, check out the Q&A with Dustin Anderson with Sage (pg 48). And, if you want to be part of the beta team to check out a new social distancing app, check out page 50. The construction industry is resilient. Be strong, my friends.Cheers,HOW TO SUPPORT REMOTE WORK IN THE BACK OFFICE Guest Post by Holly WellesON THE BLOG
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industry newsCATERPILLAR ACQUIRES MARBLE ROBOT Caterpillar, Inc. announces the acquisition of select assets and hiring of employees from San Francisco, California-based robot and autonomy technology solutions company Marble Robot, Inc. The acquisition is part of Caterpillar’s automation and autonomy strategy and demonstrates its commitment to the next generation of jobsite solutions. Building on its leadership in autonomous mining, the company plans to leverage the deep expertise of the new team to bring scalable solutions to meet the changing needs of construction, quarry, industrial, and waste industries.The new team is comprised of leading roboticists with a deep background in the robotics industry. Caterpillar intends to leverage the team’s fully integrated on-board autonomy technology—including perception, localization, and planning—to continue delivering smart, safe, more productive, and cost-effective solutions to customers.“Our customers need the best solutions for running an effective jobsite, with improved operator productivity, lower operating costs, and greater efficiency brought by autonomous solutions,” says Karl Weiss, Caterpillar chief technology officer. “That’s why we’re continuing to invest.”DOUBLE COIN PARTNERS WITH INDEPENDENT TIRE DEALER GROUPDouble Coin and CMA, a leading tire manufacturer and marketer, announce its new strategic partnership with the Independent Tire Dealer Group (ITDG). ITDG represents over 780 independent tire and auto service locations across North America. Since 1994, ITDG has been providing their members with programs that offer all the products and services needed to run their businesses, including but not limited to tires, wheels, auto parts, lubricants, equipment, social media, website, and marketing support. For more information about the Independent Tire Dealer Group, visit www.itdgusa.com. For more information about Double Coin, visit www.doublecointires.com. DATA GUMBO AND PRAIRIEDOG VENTURE PARTNERS TO TRANSFORM CAPITAL PROJECTS WITH SMART CONTRACTS Data Gumbo, the trusted transactional blockchain network for tomorrow’s industrial leaders, announces a partnership with PrairieDog Venture Partners (PDVP), the technology and development arm of the Operating System 2.0 (OS2) research project co-led by the Construction Industry Institute (CII) and the Construction Users Roundtable (CURT), dedicated to the creation and advancement a new business model for construction.Together, Data Gumbo and PrairieDog will deliver smart smartcontracts, designed to solve long-standing industry challenges around transactional and informational friction, across capital projects, turnarounds, and maintenance for the industrial, commercial, and infrastructure building sectors. Joint
WWW MCSMAG COM JUNE 2020 Mi T M DUAL PURPOSE EQUIPMENT INDUSTRY FORECAST COVID 19 IMPACT ON PROJECTS DISPUTE RESOLUTION KNOW THE PROCESS VERTICAL EXPANSION BUILDING UP
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com10industry newsContractor’s #1 Choice for Flat FloorsA great power screed using straight ﬂat screed bars. The❝Black Beauty❞GET FLAT FLOORS!Screed bars are available in lengths up to 20 feet.▼ Equilateral screed bars stay straight through years of use.▼ Now available with “T” handle (shown) or “Bicycle” handle.▼LOCATE A DEALER AT advancedconcretescreeds.com OR CALL US AT 800-648-0542.BILLD PARTNERS WITH PROCORE TO HELP CONTRACTORS MANAGE CASH FLOWBilld, a disruptive payment solution for the construction industry, announces a partnership with construction management software, Procore. Billd and Procore both serve the construction industry, each dedicated to bringing cutting edge solutions to help contractors run their business more efficiently and effectively. For contractors who usually aren’t paid until more than 90 days from purchasing materials, Billd provides 120-day terms so they can scale their business and stabilize cash flow. The Procore platform connects entire project teams, from the office to the field and across companies, providing one place to work together to do what they do best—build.The new partnership will provide users the ability to seamlessly sync the projects they’re working on with Billd into their Procore account. Contractors can submit requests for material purchases and access Billd’s 120-day payment terms directly through the Procore platform, simplifying and maintaining their daily processes. For more, visit www.billd.com. CRANE INDUSTRY SERVICES AND CM LABS OPEN SIMULATION TRAINING AND DEMO ROOMCrane Industry Services, LLC (CIS) in partnership with CM Labs Simulations, expands simulation training for cranes, earthmoving equipment, and maritime and port equipment.CIS designed a new simulation training and demo room located at the CIS Centered on Safety Training Center in the Atlanta area. The showroom features a variety of portable and full-scale models with operator seats and controls. The simulation training and demo room will open in July with a variety of Vortex simulators, including the Vortex Advantage full immersion 5-display system, and the Vortex Edge Plus, an affordable desktop simulator that is ideal for introductory training. Simulators provide the most cost-effective way to train groups of new operators or to keep skills sharp. Employers interested in exploring how simulators can be used for in-house employee evaluation, qualification, and training can schedule a demo with CIS and CM Labs. In addition, Vortex simulators are available for purchase from CIS. For more, visit www.centeredonsafety.com.CLEARSPAN OFFERS COOPERATIVE PURCHASING FOR A STREAMLINED BUILDING PROCESS ClearSpan is an awarded contract holder of Sourcewell and can offer its municipal customers cooperative purchasing. With Sourcewell, municipalities are able to save time and money by working directly with ClearSpan through a simple purchase order process, while satisfying all local and state procurement
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com12industry newsregulations. This allows local governments to get a structural solution quickly and when they need it most.Sourcewell, formerly NJPA, is a municipal contracting agency. They’re able to provide members with beneficial purchasing contracts under the guidance of the Uniform Municipal Contracting Law. Members of Sourcewell have access to an extensive database, which extends beyond just buildings, of approved venders and suppliers. The program allows municipalities to save significant time and money on many of the projects they implement throughout the year. Working with Sourcewell was a natural choice for ClearSpan, who has been providing custom and turnkey building solutions to municipalities and local governments for more than 40 years. While ClearSpan has become synonymous with sand and salt storage buildings, they also have built hundreds of municipal storage structures, recreational facilities, gyms, and much more. Local governments opt for ClearSpan’s structural solutions, because the structures inherently fit many of the factors they are looking for. Between the low cost per square foot, ability to reduce monthly utility expenses, and the option for stamped engineered drawings, it is easy for ClearSpan to get approved for government projects. ClearSpan Building Specialists work with each customer one on one to learn what they need out of a building, and they can offer stock building options or customize a building to suit even the most specific details and requirements. ClearSpan Building Specialists have extensive experience working on municipal projects, so they know the process and can offer invaluable advice. ClearSpan is a true one-stop shop, and they can outfit every building with all the needed tools and accessories. This allows customers to get a building that looks fantastic, while also providing superior functionality. ClearSpan manufactures each structure themselves, and they also offer in-house financing and installation services. This ensures each project is handled smoothly and efficiently. For more, visit www.clearspan.com. AHERN COMPANIES PARTNERS WITH TRACKUNIT® FOR TELEMATICSTrackunit will be deployed across the Ahern Rentals fleet within the next 3 years, and new Xtreme and Snorkel lifts will be assembled with a Trackunit compatible connection for customers who wish to install the telematics. This will become available in late 2020, and rolled out across the global manufacturing footprint by model type with OEM branded dashboards. The Trackunit telematics solution will also be available on products sold through the Ahern Companies distribution channels, including Diamond A Equipment and Ahern International. For more, visit www.trackunit.com.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com14project profile
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202015Vertical Expansionbuilding on top of a buildingTURNER CONSTRUCTION COMPANYThe process of adding additional levels to a finished building—known as vertical expansion—is no easy feat. Although vertical expansions have become more common in recent years, the fact that they can be done at all is a marvel of modern engineering and construction.The pace of vertical expansions continues to increase because they often are the most sensible choice for building owners who need additional space, but only have a finite amount of land to build on. Sometimes the only way to go is up.Hospitals aren’t the only type of buildings where vertical expansions are done, but the process makes particular sense for them because they’re built with a repetitive design where each floor is almost exactly the same. The addition of extra levels allows workflows to remain fundamentally unchanged, while preventing patients from ever being too far from critical services. Most new hospitals today are actually built to accommodate a possible vertical expansion in the future.EXTRA PLANNING INVOLVEDEvery construction project has its own challenges, but hospitals have a uniquely critical function that means any construction project has to be as minimally intrusive as possible. That requires significant extra planning at the outset to make sure that the project is fully mapped out and any potential issues that could cause a delay or put patients at risk are accounted for. Leading construction companies handle this during the design phase of the vertical expansion, when they painstakingly note elevations and other key details so that there are no difficulties during the tie-in process when the new construction is connected to the original structure. It’s very careful work, and there’s no room for mistakes.KEEPING NOISE MINIMALIn addition, the construction team must examine how an expansion is likely to affect a facility’s regular operations and take steps to remediate that as much as possible. One of the most common issues is noise. If there are unavoidable steps of the process that will be loud enough to disturb patients, it’s important to address the issue in advance with the hospital to decide how best to work around it—for instance, doing work at a less-intrusive time of day, or temporarily moving patients to another area of the hospital so they’ll be insulated from the noise. Contractors working on these projects should plan on a more flexible schedule than usual to make sure they account for these situations.JUST-IN-TIME DELIVERYBuildings in active use often have very little free space around them to accommodate materials, so there needs to be a workaround to allow the construction process to proceed without long delays. Contractors will often arrange for suppliers to do “just-in-time” delivery of materials on an as-needed basis, which negates the need to keep them on-site during the period before they’re used.By Paul Lawson
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com16project profileWORKER TRANSPORT SYSTEMConstruction workers themselves can be a source of disruption to a hospital environment, so some creativity can be required to allow them to do their jobs without disturbing hospital staff and patients. At my company, we recently designed and built a multi-step system to transport workers from the ground to the worksite six floors up. A scaffolding system first takes them to the roof of a one-story area of the building, which they walk across to reach a buckhoist, which lifts them to the worksite quickly—and even more important, quietly. ROOFING TEAM ON STANDBYThe make-or-break moment of a vertical expansion comes when the building’s roof is opened up, usually to extend a column or to tie in to an existing utility system. Because the inside of the hospital is exposed to the elements, precautions must be taken so that rain and wind don’t enter the existing building. Contractors generally keep a roofing team available so that any cuts made in the roof are patched up right away. Larger openings require the installation of a temporary roof, which can also be done fairly quickly.TEMPORARY BARRIER ROOMTo keep the patient area fully insulated and weatherproof, contractors can add a temporary barrier room between the existing building and the construction site. These rooms are fully airproof—a fan inside pulls any dust and debris out through an exhaust port, preventing them from going inside the hospital and potentially infecting patients. Following the final cleaning of the new space, contractors connect the existing building with the new section using a modular quick-connect system that keeps additional debris from being created. Remote monitoring systems are used throughout the process to ensure the air is clean and breathable.VISUAL COMMUNICATIONSSo much of the success of a vertical expansion project—and, really, any construction project—hinges on an honest, open line of communication between the contractor and the client. That’s why at my construction company, we work to bridge that gap by using 3D rendering technology to help clients visualize what the project will look like. This technology proved its worth for us on one recent hospital project. We had determined that a physicians’ parking lot was the only possible location for us to place our crane so that it would reach the entire construction area, but that was not an ideal solution. Our only alternative would be to use multiple cranes in other areas, creating additional disorder, but we were also aware that it might not be obvious to hospital administrators why this was the right course of action. By using a 3D depiction to clearly show them the various options and how they would affect the hospital’s daily operations, we agreed together that this was the correct decision.CLOSING THOUGHTEvery vertical expansion project is unique and presents different obstacles, which is why you should spend ample time doing advance preparation and stay in constant contact with your client. By doing so, you’ll ensure that the final product is something you’re proud of and is able to stand the test of time. about the authorPaul Lawson is a healthcare project executive for Turner Construction Company in Nashville, Tennessee. Lawson joined Turner in 2005 as a project engineer and previously served as the Special Projects Division (SPD) senior project manager. He has played a significant role in Turner’s recent healthcare work, including a $48 million, 95,623-square-foot vertical expansion of Saint Thomas Rutherford Hospital in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, that is now under construction. For more, visit www.turnerconstruction.com.
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JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com18Tufftec Lockersuniversity selects quiet lockers for new concert hallSTATE-OF-THE-ART ACOUSTICSMagnificent acoustics and quiet elegance are the hallmarks of DePaul University’s new $98 million,185,000-square-foot performing arts facility. Completed in the summer of 2018, the Holtschneider Performance Center serves as the next phase of a new complex dedicated to serving the needs of hundreds of music students, while hosting the world-class performances of multiple artists simultaneously.Rob Roubik, a principal at Antunovich Associates in Chicago says, “The new center is a technologically advanced, aesthetically sleek performing arts center that meets the wide-ranging music needs of students, faculty, and the surrounding community. It was specifically and painstakingly designed with clean lines and wood-paneled rooms that surround a wide-open, three-story atrium, which places the building’s focus solely on music and not the venue.”EMPHASIS ON SOUNDMeticulously constructed with a profound emphasis on acoustics and learning, the new facility was designed to comfortably seat more than 800 patrons in four separate performance spaces, while indulging the musical talents of students, staff, and faculty. This includes simultaneous access to the 505-seat Mary Patricia Gannon Concert Hall, the 140-seat Murray and Michele Allen Recital Hall, the 80-seat Brennan Family Recital Hall, and the 75-seat Mary A. Dempsey and Philip H. Corboy Jazz Hall. Other amenities are offered through the building’s new state-of-the-art rehearsal spaces, sound recording technology suite, box office, atrium café, social commons area, and dynamic and flexible teaching spaces.In addition, the student classrooms and rehearsal areas were strategically positioned on the upper floors to accommodate the strict functional and acoustic requirements of the facility’s double- and triple-height performance spaces. To create a bright, vibrant atmosphere for students and visitors alike, each floor was painted a different accent color and complemented with dark carpeting and neutral gray tones. “This magnificent facility resulted from 10 years of planning,” explains Roubik. “The grand opening was a spectacular event that included an 11-day festival of performances from faculty, students, and world-class artists. Everyone involved couldn’t have been prouder or happier with the finished product. As an institutional project, budgets were project profile
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202019certainly a concern. The specification process was long and rigid. But, in the end everyone was especially pleased with how the building’s elegant motif harmoniously merged with the school’s artistic nature.” MATERIAL SELECTION CRUCIALAccording to Roubik, the selection process included the careful specification of everything from angled sound reflective walls and acoustically isolated floors to the installation of the new resilient Tufftec® lockers from Scranton Products. Among the many selling points was each locker’s ability to open and close quietly in an environment extremely sensitive to acoustics, noise, and sound, while securely storing musical instruments ranging from flutes and clarinets to trombones and tubas. Throughout the complex, more than 500 light gray lockers were installed in multiple sizes ranges. Engineered for strength and durability, Tufftec’s HDPE material is specifically designed to withstand the harshest daily use in addition to being low maintenance and easy to clean. The lockers are also impact, dent, and graffiti resistant, as well as impervious to moisture. With 25- to 100-percent post-consumer recycled content, Tufftec’s HDPE is naturally resistant to bacteria, mold, and mildew.CLOSING THOUGHT“The new Tufftec lockers met every requirement,” adds Roubik. “We were immediately struck by how quietly they operate—there wasn’t the usual banging and clanging associated with metal lockers. Plus, Scranton Products met our size requirements for storing virtually every type of instrument used at the school. Everyone from the client and contractor to our theatrical and acoustic consultants were thrilled with the outcome.” for more information With more than 30 years of experience, Scranton Products provides innovative, creative designs that create a lasting impression. The industry leader in plastic bathroom partitions and lockers, Scranton Products are constructed from premium, American-made solid plastic for unmatched durability that stands up to dents, scratches, corrosion, graffiti, and mildew. With endless design options and an array of designer colors and textures, Scranton Products installs confidence and elegant style in every project. For more about Scranton Products’ Tufftec lockers, visit www.scrantonproducts.com.
Disinfecting Equipmentpressure washer mister combination by Mi-T-MCOVER STORYJUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com22equipment solutionIn light of the novel coronavirus, the CDC recommends cleaning surfaces, spaces, and items. Mi-T-M Corporation is responding to the immediate need for disinfecting equipment in every type of business, school, and industry. A new combination series was recently introduced to help disinfect large areas quickly. The Mi-T-M pressure washer mister combination is not only used to dispense disinfectant but can also be used as a cold water pressure washer. MULTIPURPOSE COMBINATIONThe electric combination 1400-PSI cold water pressure washer and 350-PSI low pressure dispensing mister is easy to use and comes in either a hand carry or portable model. Since it is a combination model it can be used for all purpose cleaning around the home or small business and, in mister mode, used to put disinfectant right where it’s needed. Each unit includes a 36-inch lance and trigger gun with quick connect nozzles for pressure washing, a trigger gun with misting nozzle, and 75-foot x ¼-inch hose. The high quality electric motor makes it safe to use both inside and out. The easy-to-use, lightweight pressure washer system is the perfect tool for both homeowners and small business owners. It may be small and compact, but it packs a punch. Just hook it up to a water source, plug it in, and you’re ready to go. CLOSING THOUGHTDesigned to be used with a concentrated disinfectant mixture in mister mode, this new series allows for quick and efficient disinfectant misting on a multitude of surfaces in high contact areas. Any industry, business, medical, or long-term care facility can now sanitize quickly, every day and every shift. The compact commercial grade unit helps to sanitize break rooms and rest rooms. It can be used in locker rooms and in gyms, on weights, exercise equipment, and other common spaces. for more information For more information on the complete line of products and support from Mi-T-M Corporation, visit www.mitm.com.Hit play to see this combination unit in mister mode.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com24equipment solutionfour welder/generator issues that are costing you Field WeldingTHE REMOTE SOLUTIONWelding and repair work in the field can throw different challenges at you every day. When your truck is home base for tools and equipment and the work is in another spot or hard to reach, getting jobs done efficiently can be one of those challenges. Your current welding setup may be driving several habits that you consider business as usual—but that are actually costing time and money and may be affecting quality. How do you know if you would benefit from a different welding solution? Ask yourself these questions: ARE YOU “MAKING DO”?Are you using weld parameters that are already set to avoid walking back to the machine to make changes? Your days on the jobsite are varied and so are the jobs you must complete. You likely need to switch between MIG, stick, and gouge, or dial in your arc control for different types of welds. Most welding remotes have limited options for adjusting these parameters and processes, or you may not have a remote at all. It might seem more convenient to stay in your current workspace and make do with less-than-ideal parameters, but this can result in time and money spent on poor weld quality or rework.Look for a remote that gives you full process and parameter control from wherever you’re working on the jobsite. With the ArcReach® Stick/TIG Remote from Miller, you can easily adjust amperage and arc control to fine tune arc characteristics—eliminating the need to walk back to make adjustments or make do with less-than-ideal parameters. HOW LONG DOES YOUR WELDER/GENERATOR RUN?When you get to a jobsite, do you turn your welder/generator on and let it run all day, turning it off only when you’re about to leave or during a break? While this seems convenient, you likely have periods when there is no load being applied and the welder/generator doesn’t need to run. By Brian BellileThe ArcReach® Stick/TIG Remote from Miller allows operators to easily adjust amperage and arc control to fine tune arc characteristics—eliminating the need to walk back to make adjustments or make do with less-than-ideal parameters.
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202025The average welder/generator is used about 30 percent of the time it’s running, meaning that up to 70 percent of the time it could be turned off. A machine that runs all day can quickly drive up your fuel costs and decrease time between maintenance cycles. The new Remote Start/Stop on Bobcat™ 260 and 225 welder/generators from Miller lets you easily turn the machine on and off with the push of a button from wherever you’re working. With this capability, you can run your machine only when it’s needed and save up to $1,500 in fuel and maintenance costs per year compared to letting the machine idle while not in use. DO YOU HAVE TO YELL TO BE HEARD ON THE JOBSITE?When you get to the jobsite, there are often welders, generators, air compressors, and tools being used all around you. This may seem like business as usual and just part of the job, but all this additional noise can make it hard to communicate, especially if you need to take calls from customers. And, on some jobsites, such as those in residential areas or near schools, reducing noise may be required to stay within local restrictions. Just as turning the machine off helps save fuel, it also helps reduce noise on the jobsite. To help control noise, look for remote solutions that easily let you turn the machine on and off. HOW MUCH ARE YOU SPENDING ON MAINTENANCE AND REPAIRS?Maintenance is an important part of keeping your equipment running smoothly. But if you’re running your machine more than necessary or leaving it running out of convenience, you’ll significantly increase service intervals and end up doing maintenance more often than you need to. This is time and money you could be spending on other things—not to mention the increased wear and tear on your machine from the additional run time. Turning the machine off remotely can reduce service intervals by up to two and a half times and save you up to $1,500 annually in fuel and maintenance. CLOSING THOUGHTNew remote solutions give you more control over how much your welder/generator runs, how much fuel you use, how often maintenance is needed, and how much time you spend adjusting weld parameters. Look for remote technologies for your welder/generator that deliver more control right where you’re working—to help you improve efficiency and results in field welding and repairs. about the authorBrian Bellile is a product manager, engine drives, with Miller Electric Mfg. LLC. For more, visit www.millerwelds.com.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com28In my first article on Baby Boomers, I shared the financial reality of Boomers. Technically, it is an individual born between 1946 and 1964. That makes up 20 percent of all Americans. Our generation brought to the world Rock and Roll, Woodstock, Vietnam, divorce as an acceptable alternative to marriage, two-income families, the Women’s Movement, mass consumerism, television, credit cards, Disneyland, and an emphasis on social equality. BOOMERS IN THE WORKPLACEIn this article, I want to share some observations and recommendations in dealing with Boomers in the workplace. First, understand the workplace has a strong purpose in the Boomer’s world. Boomers represent less than 44 percent of the U.S. population, but in the next 5 years, they’re projected to hold 70 percent of U.S. disposable income and buy 50 percent of total consumer-packaged goods. According to AARP, Baby Boomers spend roughly $7 trillion per year on goods and services and, in fact, own 80 percent of the country’s personal net worth.According to Transamerica, 65 percent of Baby Boomers plan to work past age 65 or do not plan to retire and 34 percent plan to continue working for enjoyment. The reality is many have to. Most do not have adequate retirement savings. As many as 60 percent of Baby Boomers are assisting their aging parents in some way, including paying bills and helping them purchase groceries. Additionally, more than 90 percent of the Boomers surveyed have provided some kind of support to their adult children, including paying tuition, loans, car payments, or basic expenses like utilities and rent. More than half have allowed their adult children to live at home rent free. The fact is, Boomers plan to stay in the workplace far longer than their parents. VALUES AND MOTIVESUnderstanding their values and motives may help to get along with them. For instance, Boomers’ value on visibility is far more than subsequent generations like Gen X, Gen Y, or Gen Z. The Boomer generation is less likely to embrace remote work or work from home options than younger generations. For a Boomer, visibility is everything. Boomer wants their manager to see them showing up to work on time every day and working hard until the day ends. The stay-at-home practices from the pandemic are creating stress for Boomers, more so than other generations.Boomers have a strong work ethic and expect to work hard as a lifestyle. In fact, their motto very well may be, “Live to Work” versus “Work to Live.” Work defines many, and a dedication to the workplace and camaraderie is one of the keys to happiness. Although it takes twice as long for Boomers to find a job than Gen X, Y, or Z, they value the social interaction and sense of purpose the workplace provides to their life.Because of the need to work longer, Boomers will be more sensitive to PART 2 OF 2management solutionThose Darn Boomersthe baby boomers’ impact in the workplaceEXPERT COMMENTARYBy Preston Ingalls
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202029savings and earning opportunities. This could be a strong motivator to many. This means a drive to work overtime, earn bonuses, etc.Being visible also means many Boomers value professional attire more than other generations. This includes business casual over dressing down. Many Boomers judge others on their professional (or lack of) appearance. While almost half of Boomers will use the smartphone to make purchases, they spend less time each week on social media than younger generations. Technology is seen more as a tool, much like seeing a car as a means of transportation means versus a lifestyle. Therefore, many have less inclination to learn all the nuances and techniques associated with the use of the technology. BOOMER WAY OF LIFEBaby Boomers take pride in the companies they work for, the positions they hold, and the duration or tenure with which they stay at the company. They will view others’ short tenures as “job hopping” more than younger generations. Boomers are confident and extremely competitive. Since the Baby Boom produced such a large increase in the population, Boomers experienced strong competition for jobs. Most have carried their drive, ambition, and competitive nature throughout their careers. They will work as long as it takes to reach their goals and to stand out enough and get the promotion, raise, or recognition they need. Boomer characteristics include independence, responsibility, and maturity. They have honed the ability to make up their own minds and determine what is most valuable or significant. CLOSING THOUGHTJust as Boomers are different than their parents, the Silent and Great Generation, the Boomers are different than Gen x, Millennials, and Gen Z. But that is what makes the stew so rich; all the different elements that go into it. If you are working with a Boomer, it might help to understand what motivates them. John Barrymore once said, “A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams.” ON THE WEBCheck out this article on mcsmag.com for Boomers’ thoughts on teamworkabout the author Preston Ingalls is president and CEO of TBR Strategies, LLC, a Raleigh, North Carolina-based maintenance and reliability firm specializing in the construction and oil and gas industries. Preston can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com30John Meibers is the vice president and general manager of Deltek + ComputerEase, the leading provider of accounting, project management, and field-to-office software for the construction industry. In today’s rapidly changing and fast-paced world, a big part of John’s role is to ensure that ComputerEase equips clients with the most cutting-edge technology. Below is a Q&A with John’s thoughts on the construction industry and technology.With regards to technology, what upgrades do commercial construction firms overlook?MEIBERS: With regards to technology, construction companies often overlook a key first step—evaluating where they are at today and identifying key business inefficiencies to improve through software implementation. Once your company’s future technology needs are outlined, you can then start to analyze different software providers to determine which ones are the best fit to help you achieve your goals. During this discovery process, I recommend construction companies ask “Is this software built specifically for our industry or does it try to be a solution that works for all industries?” The nuances and complexities of construction typically require software that truly knows how to solve your specific business problems. Another aspect of software selection that sometimes goes overlooked is the idea that you’re not just buying software, you’re buying a partnership. Construction companies should actively seek out software vendors that have a long and successful history operating within the construction space. Major software implementation is not easy to uproot, so finding a vendor that truly understands your business and can provide personalized support from a team with real-world industry expertise is important. When talking to software vendors during the discovery process, you can learn a lot by asking “What do your short-term and long-term product roadmaps look like?” Find out if they have a strategic vision for development and determine if that aligns with your company growth goals. In your opinion, what has been the main reason construction firms have not updated processes with technology and do you think construction firms can have a remote workforce?MEIBERS: I think the main reason construction firms have not updated technology is the misconception of the overall value new software can bring. The software chosen should be transformational to the construction firm and alter the trajectory of their business. Oftentimes companies view software more as a transactional expense, which couldn’t be further from the truth when it comes to robust, fully-integrated construction software. This perception is often the result of a less than satisfactory experience with generic software solutions or when construction companies don’t have a software partner that offers complete implementation support and on-going training. The construction industry also has an aging workforce that can sometimes be resistant to technological change. And hey, I don’t blame them! We’ve encountered construction professionals with 30- to 40-plus years of both field and office experience that have been doing the job successfully at a high level for a long time ask why change is necessary. The answer is that evolving your software strategy isn’t about yesterday or today, but about tomorrow. How much more powerful and efficient could your organization be if you combine the years of industry experience with that latest software built specifically Tech-Connectedupdating processes to create a cohesive teamEXPERT COMMENTARYTHE NUANCES AND COMPLEXITIES OF CONSTRUCTION TYPICALLY REQUIRE SOFTWARE THAT TRULY KNOWS HOW TO SOLVE YOUR SPECIFIC BUSINESS PROBLEMS.management solution
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202031for your trade? In addition, the younger generations that are moving into decision making roles within construction, actively seek out companies that find creative ways to power their business through software and technology. Having some level of software sophistication can be huge for attracting and retaining a talented workforce. With regards to construction firms being able to have a successful remote workforce, I absolutely believe they can. Construction traditionally has always had a remote workforce with operations happening both on the jobsite and in the office. Construction has in some ways always been working remotely, now there are just new and more efficient ways to enhance field-to-office communication.What can construction companies do to better prepare for tomorrow’s jobsite?MEIBERS: Companies can invest in systems that provide real-time access to job data and better connect their teams. The modern construction company needs to be able to do everything in the field that they can in the office. With the proper controls and security, leveraging the right technology can bring the power of your system directly to the field and everyone else in your network or business ecosystem. CLOSING THOUGHTOverall, I believe the construction industry will continue to look for comprehensive software solutions to power their business and workforce. We also think that the overall workforce will be looking for companies that have a vision of solving problems through technology and actively seek out those who do. Construction companies will continue to work towards being more productive and profitable in both the field and office striving to achieve a cohesive business team where everyone is working as one. www.sunflowerboatandbarge.com • 563-583-0556• Sectional Barges• Spud Barges from 75x32 to 195x70• Hydraulic Dredges• Truckable Tugboats from 300 – 600 hp• Traditional Tugboats• Support EquipmentAvailable for Lease:ON THE WEBCheck out this article on mcsmag.com for five warning signs your software is a liabilityfor more informationDeltek is the leading global provider of enterprise software and information solutions for project-based businesses. More than 30,000 organizations and millions of users in over 80 countries around the world rely on Deltek for superior levels of project intelligence, management, and collaboration. Deltek’s industry-focused expertise powers project success by helping firms achieve performance that maximizes productivity and revenue. In today’s rapidly changing and fast paced world, a big part of Meiber’s role is to ensure that ComputerEase equips clients with the most cutting-edge technology. For more, visit www.deltek.com.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com34software solutionHere Comes 5G network slicing and other operational benefitsHIGH BANDWIDTH AND LOW LATENCYEvery industry is looking to how 5G will impact their operations, and the construction industry is perhaps one that stands to gain the most from the technology. A facet of 5G that could offer the most benefits is “network slicing”—which enables communication service providers to tailor connectivity services to the precise requirements of any user, device, application, or context.In addition, there are some obvious benefits of 5G for engineering and construction businesses stemming from the speed, latency, and scalability of the technology, including:• Enhanced mobile broadband providing high speed and capacity• Mission-critical operations providing low latency and high reliability• Massive machine-type communications providing high scalability and geographic coveragePRACTICAL APPLICATIONS Monitoring the health, location, status, and specifications of assets of all kinds on site is crucial, and 5G can help in terms of data collection, capture, and analysis. For example, this can confirm whether site machinery is operational and available to be used, and capture the status of an order such as a window frame or fire extinguisher to assist to ensure the project schedule is on track. High bandwidth and low latency from 5G should improve data capture across project delivery processes. Increased visibility into data informs decision-making in the design phase, helps minimize issues and changes during construction, and potentially decreases future renovations. As technology solutions available to construction projects gain traction, we can anticipate more IoT and reality capture solutions on site helping in a number of ways. In terms of video capture (think 4k and 8k cameras, augmented and virtual reality), 5G will provide a wealth of opportunities for organizations to inexpensively deploy technology to quickly capture, organize, and analyze massive volumes of video information. 5G will mean sensors can more effectively be deployed to improve safety by tracking individuals’ safety compliance. Supply chain efficiency can be enhanced by enabling better tracking of materials both on and off site. For building information modelling (BIM), 5G can help ensure the site plan is accurate, with the potential for the plan to be updated based on almost each and every action on site. Many of these use cases can reduce costs in addition to driving efficiencies on a project. They can help manage the need for some teams to even be on site because the information they need is available in real time and in high-resolution video form via any device, wherever they are.It can also provide real-time, rich, visual information to the owner as well as an on-demand transparent view of the project at any particular moment in time.But what additional value could network slicing bring to construction’s use of 5G?PRIORITIZING WHAT MATTERS For construction businesses to benefit from these solutions, connectivity will be key to ensure the information captured is available at the time and place of need. As a result, bandwidth will become a potential battleground on site as the competition for which data and information is most important intensifies. Construction projects are already working against thin margins, and the cost of providing 5G connectivity universally on site could be prohibitive. A possible solution is to adopt a tiered prioritization approach. This will By Burcin Kaplanoglu
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202035help ensure that 5G capabilities are utilized on those processes requiring the greatest bandwidth, such as video or other visuals. Essentially, this would mean creating different access points and levels for specific use cases. But as with any new technology, there will likely be a learning curve: What construction projects consider to be the highest tier initially may not turn out to be the highest tier in the long run. One such consideration is around site safety and security. While heavy video files may well provide a strong argument to use a 5G network due to the latency benefits, processes of critical importance to the safety and security of a project may have a similar if not stronger argument due to the speed of 5G.We could well see a tiered prioritization strategy that considers safety, security, and bandwidth at different phases of a construction project, allowing for a fluid restructuring of tiers as the project progresses.Any initiative that tries to realize a safety and security benefit, however, will be dependent on people on site having access to the information being shared. It would mean that team members need to have 5G-enabled devices available to them. Is that affordable?REDUCING DEVICE COSTSCurrently, deploying hundreds or thousands of smart devices across a project site at the current cost is prohibitive for construction businesses, and relying on employees to have their own 5G enabled smart devices to use on site may be too ambitious in the short term. Smart devices today are like mini-computers processing most activities on the device itself, and that is where much of the cost exists. However, with 5G technology a lot of the processing power will be able to happen in the cloud, allowing for less expensive phone hardware that simply needs to capture the data. This could break down the barriers to deploying 5G-enabled smart devices on site.CLOSING THOUGHTThe benefits of 5G and “network slicing” capabilities open up many possibilities for engineering and construction businesses to find efficiencies, improve safety, mitigate risk, and reduce security concerns on projects; while the build quality can also be enhanced through more accurate updates to the real-time plan. Get ready construction industry, here comes 5G, about the authorDr. Burcin Kaplanoglu is a recognized industry technologist, thought leader, and keynote speaker. He leads industry strategy and innovation at Oracle Construction and Engineering and is the cofounder of the Oracle Construction and Engineering Innovation Lab. He is also an adjunct professor at Northwestern University’s McCormick School of Engineering.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com36Arbitration is one of the preferred mechanisms of dispute resolution in the construction industry. Understanding how an arbitration will unfold is useful in managing a dispute. Most domestic construction disputes are referred to arbitration through, and according to the rules, of the American Arbitration Association (AAA), but other organizations that follow different rules and processes do exist. For AAA arbitrations, the following steps provide a rough outline of a typical proceeding. ARBITRATION DEMANDIf commercial discussions between two parties are unable to resolve a dispute, the next step is for one party to file an arbitration demand. The AAA demand form can be found online and should usually include a brief statement of the party’s claim, a description of preference for the arbitrator’s experience (e.g., construction litigator with at least 10 years of experience), and a filing fee, which will vary based on the size of a claim. Once a demand is served, the responding party can answer and submit counterclaims. Instead of filing an answer, some respondents may challenge whether the dispute should be arbitrated by submitting an objection directly to the AAA and/or filing a parallel lawsuit. Challenges may be based on state venue requirements or disagreement on whether the dispute is covered under the parties’ contractual arbitration provision. After an answer is received and any challenges are addressed, the AAA administrator will typically provide the parties a list and resumes of potential arbitrators. The parties review this list, rank their preferred arbitrators, and strike any objectionable arbitrators. The AAA administrator will appoint an arbitrator based on the party’s preferences (Note: In disputes requiring a panel of arbitrators, the AAA may appoint all three, the parties may each appoint one arbitrator with the two “wing” arbitrators then selecting the chair, or the parties may follow some other process). THE SCHEDULING ORDERAfter appointment, the arbitrator will convene a scheduling conference with the parties to discuss setting a hearing date and key dates for discovery. The arbitrator may utilize a form scheduling order or ask the parties to coordinate and draft the order. Key dates on the scheduling order may include deadlines for submitting more detailed statements of claims, filing requests for production, completing depositions, disclosing experts, and filing dispositive motions. Arbitrators may also use the scheduling order to outline the scope of and limits on discovery and requirements for pre-trial submissions (e.g., witness statements, witness lists, exhibit lists, exhibit exchanges, etc.).Traditionally, construction arbitrations have provided for more limited discovery than might be available in a litigation proceeding. However, increasingly, arbitrators are permitting broader discovery, including more expansive use of depositions, which can be expensive. For some smaller disputes, to limit expenses, the AAA offers fast track rules which substantially restrict discovery and the scope of submissions to the arbitrator.The deadlines in a scheduling order may serve as useful sign posts for settlement negotiations between parties. For example, parties know once discovery begins, they can expect substantial legal fees and costs, so they may try again to resolve a dispute at that time, and, similarly, expert reports or completion of expert depositions provide an opportunity for parties to evaluate the strengths and merits of their case and may allow for a return to the negotiating table. DISCOVERYAfter the scheduling order is issues, parties will complete discovery, which may include the exchange of documents, depositions, and expert reports. Other written discovery, like requests for admission or requests for interrogatories are used more sparingly in arbitration, but they may be available in some circumstances. Like most judges, arbitrators expect parties to try to resolve discovery controversies between themselves, but arbitrators will utilize the AAA Rules and applicable law to resolve any discovery spats.THE HEARINGOnce discovery is complete, the parties will prepare for the hearing. They will Arbitration Expectationsunderstanding the process of resolving a disputeBEST PRACTICESBy Aman Kahlonlegal solution
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202037prepare exhibits, witness lists, and any required pre-hearing memoranda. Parties may also agree to file witness statements or affidavits in lieu of providing direct testimony from witnesses.During the hearing, the parties may or may not submit opening statements depending upon their agreement and/or the preference of the arbitrator. Then, examination of witnesses will begin with the claimant putting on its case first with the respondent to follow. Arbitrators may allow witnesses to appear out-of-order to accommodate travel or other needs of the parties. Once each side has presented their case, the arbitrator may allow for brief closing arguments and then adjourn the hearing. If requested by the parties and agreed to by the arbitrator, post-hearing briefs may follow the hearing. After receiving post-hearing briefs, the arbitrator will close the record of the proceeding, which starts the time period for an arbitrator to issue a final decision. Where attorneys’ fees and costs are also at issue in a dispute, arbitrators may provide for supplemental briefing on those costs prior to closing the record. The arbitrator will then issue a final decision. If requested, an arbitrator will issue a reasoned decision, which will provide more detail on the legal and factual basis for the arbitrator’s decision. The decision is enforceable in court, and the losing party will be required to make payment in accordance with the decision’s terms.The adjournment of the hearing and the submission of post-hearing briefs are both useful milestones for settlement negotiations. While each party will likely be more cemented in their positions at this stage, each side will also have better insight on how the arbitrator is likely to rule. With any dispute, it is important to pay attention to these and other settlement opportunities, which may help avoid legal expenses and the uncertainty associated with final awards. CLOSING THOUGHTThe above outline should help you navigate the arbitration process and provide tools to manage and anticipate expenses, as well as identify settlement openings along the way. about the authorAman Kahlon is a partner in the Construction Practice Group at Bradley Arant Boult Cummings (www.bradley.com) in Birmingham, Alabama. He represents owners, general contractors, and subcontractors in construction and government contracts matters. His litigation experience covers a wide variety of disputes, including substantial experience in power and energy matters. He also advises clients on delay, interference, defective design, and negligence claims. He can be reached at email@example.com.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com40Construction companies and contractors rely heavily on how efficiently they are able to allocate their vehicles, equipment, and labor for each job. Jobsites can be separated sometimes by hundreds or thousands of miles, so effective construction management requires virtually continuous fleet tracking to ensure that nothing sits idle for long in order to improve profitability.On top of this, with the construction company or contractor name/logo emblazoned on vehicles for the public to see, it is vital to prevent any unprofessional actions, such as speeding or reckless driving, that could hurt their brand, compromise contracts, or even invite liability in the case of serious accidents.TRACKING FOR OPTIMAL USEAs a proactive response, a growing number of construction managers are turning to GPS tracking of their fleet vehicles to ensure better construction management logistics and clear driver GPS Trackingreal-time data for optimal resource allocation across jobsitesCONSTRUCTION VEHICLE FLEETSBy Del Williamstechnology solution
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202041accountability. This is resulting in a more optimal, profitable use of construction vehicles, equipment, and labor for each job, as well as safer driving.“We use GPS tracking to know where our equipment is so we can quickly get it to the next jobsite,” says Robert Hanneman, business development/fleet manager at Chelsea, Oklahoma-based K&D Construction Services, a specialty foundation contractor serving the utilities market in a six-state area with a full suite of construction foundation services. “We use it when we schedule which jobs need which pieces of equipment to ensure that everybody gets what they need and nothing extra. It also helps us keep our drivers safe and accountable for their driving.”RUGGED AND READYHowever, not all GPS tracking systems are designed to withstand rough use at construction worksites.“We work for utility companies and spend a lot of time out on dirt roads, so the equipment gets bounced around,” says Hanneman. “We had too much trouble with previous GPS tracking devices that were not reliable in the field.”When Hanneman researched the market for a replacement, he turned to a rugged system called Shadow Tracker Vision III from Advanced Tracking Technologies (ATTI), a Houston, Texas-based designer and manufacturer of GPS tracking products. The system is designed for construction use, and costs about half of what he was paying previously.“The more reliable the GPS tracking system—even in rougher terrain—the better it is for construction, and theirs has been pretty darn reliable,” says Hanneman, who uses the devices on about 45 vehicles including semi-trucks, 1-ton and ¾-ton trucks, as well as skid steers, mini excavators, etc.As far as pricing, Hanneman notes that he pays under $20 a month per vehicle for the GPS tracking.ONE SYSTEM FOR FLEETHe appreciates that he can use the one system to track all of his construction fleet vehicles. “I did not want to look at multiple systems to see different things, with one set of trackers for the trucks and another for the skid steers and mini excavators.”According to Hanneman, via a PC or smartphone app approved by ATTI he can display the real-time location of his entire fleet on a map and zoom in on any specific vehicle. At a glance, he can see if a vehicle is moving (displays green) or stopped (displays red). If he touches a vehicle icon, the app will display where the vehicle has been, where it stopped, and how long it idled. “By zooming in or out on the map, we can see everything,” says Hanneman. “We can look where the different crews are and see what equipment they have with them in case we need to reallocate equipment to other places, depending on the job tasks.”Hanneman notes that job tasks are not always the same from one jobsite to the next. “Maybe one crew has four skid steers, another has one, and I need to move skid steers around between the different crews,” he says. UPDATE EVERY 10 SECONDSCompared with typical GPS tracking devices that may only update every few minutes, the system provides real-time location updates every 10-seconds, as well as location, speed, and idle time alerts if something is amiss. This data is transmitted via satellite and cellular networks to a smartphone or PC on a 24/7 basis. The system has access to nationwide speed limits in its database. “We have multiple crews working in multiple states, so being able to track where our vehicle fleet is in real-time 24/7 is a real advantage,” says Hanneman. “It also helps if we need to respond quickly to a need for emergency construction, such as for repair after a storm.”CLOSING THOUGHTWhile K&D Construction Services has a great work crew, according to Hanneman, the GPS tracking system has helped his drivers to drive more safely and take greater responsibility for their own conduct without the need to micromanage. about the author Del Williams is a technical writer based in Torrance, California. For more about Advanced Tracking Technologies, visit www.advantrack.com. For a free demo, visit www.advantrack.com/free-demo/.Real-time, 24/7 tracking enables optimal resource allocation across jobsites.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com42technology solutionEPS InsulationQ&A with Insulfoam expert Chip Coughlan PERFORMANCE MEETS COST-EFFECTIVENESSSince the 1930s, the commercial building industry has utilized expanded polystyrene (EPS) rigid foam insulation to achieve high-performance alongside cost-effectiveness. A critical component of a building envelope, insulation is more important than ever as today’s commercial contractors aim to ensure compliance with stringent code-required R-values, while staying under budget.Contractors can economically increase a building’s R-value by using ultra-lightweight, moisture-resistant EPS panels that are customizable to meet project needs. EPS shows off its high-performance capabilities in all areas of the building, including walls and below-grade, due to its ability to increase thermal resistance, provide moisture resistance, and meet required compressive strength. Continue reading to gain further insight into the advantages of building with EPS as Insulfoam expert Chip Coughlan addresses commercial contractors’ frequently asked insulation questions. Why is EPS insulation right for my job?COUGHLAN: EPS insulation is typically engineered to a 4-foot x 4-foot x 8-foot block and can easily be cut down to the exact size needed for the job. Because of the flexibility of the product afforded by its large size, EPS is expertly suited for an array of commercial jobs. Commercial contractors can install the solution via an exterior wall, below-grade, and in all other parts of the building envelope.How is this insulation cost-effective? COUGHLAN: Often times, contractors require multiple layers of insulation to meet R-value mandates. Below-grade applications, for example, may actually require several feet of insulation to fill voids under slabs. In contrast, EPS is available in large blocks, and professionals can cut the material to satisfy virtually any project need. This makes it possible to elevate R-values without the material or added labor costs of building up multiple insulation layers on site. EPS’ customization capabilities call for less material handling, and its lightweight nature results in quick installation—all of which aid in accelerating jobs’ timelines, contributing to contractors’ ability to stay in the black.Is EPS water-resistant? COUGHLAN: When contractors have a project that will likely be exposed to moisture, EPS can rise to the challenge due to its water-resistant properties. For example, during 15 year in-situ testing below-grade, where wet soil and freeze-thaw cycles are commonplace, EPS saw only 4.8 percent water absorption. The material further delivered 94 percent of its specified R-value after the allotted time. These long-term performance advantages make EPS a preferred choice for contractors looking for a reliable insulation material.Is the material easy to work with in the field?COUGHLAN: Crews can simply mechanically fasten EPS insulation directly to the application using cap screws, cap nails, staples, or adhesives. And, thanks to its light physical properties, teams can easily maneuver EPS insulation into the proper position. What adhesives, caulk, and insulation tapes do you recommend when working with EPS?COUGHLAN: There are a variety of compatible adhesives, caulk, and insulation tapes available on the market today. Keep in mind—water-based, urethanes and polyether’s adhesives work best, and should not use solvents that could deteriorate the insulation. Ultimately, the choice of adhesives, caulk, and tape for a contractor’s insulation job depends on the application at hand.Photo courtesy of Insulfoam
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202043How can the material meet continuous insulation requirements for walls, optimizing energy-efficiency?COUGHLAN: The key to optimizing energy-efficiency is to create a virtually airtight envelope by eliminating thermal breaks. Because manufacturers can produce EPS blocks in large sizes to cover an expansive wall, there are going to be fewer air gaps and reduced thermal bridging from fewer connections. This affords contractors the ability to meet stringent continuous insulation requirements without racking up material costs. And, speaking of energy-efficiency, EPS’ thermal properties will remain stable over its entire service life. Some EPS manufacturers are even able to guarantee R-value over 20 years. Why should contractors insulate below-grade, and what are some key considerations to keep in mind when doing so?COUGHLAN: Since uninsulated concrete provides a thermal bridge between a commercial building’s heated interior and the relatively cooler earth surrounding the building or through exposed slab edges to the outside air, blocking that heat flow with insulation is critical. Below-grade insulation also helps mitigate moisture to reduce interior condensation on foundation walls. Or, when installed on the exterior, insulation helps prevent freeze-thaw cycling damage. That being said, it’s important for contractors to determine the most appropriate insulation method for their application. For example, insulating below a concrete slab is much different than insulating below a commercial-grade freezer. Secondly, professionals must judge the appropriate compressive strength needed for the job. EPS’ flexible product offerings allow manufacturers to meet a range of compressive strengths for a project, up to 60 psi. CLOSING THOUGHTEPS is going to be commercial contractors’ best bet when it comes to delivering desirable performance capabilities such as moisture retention, R-value stability, and compressive strength. And, the rigid foam offers these high-performance capabilities without breaking budgets. It’s a no-brainer. OSHA Compliant Guardrail andStair Rail SystemsSafety Boot® Guardrail SystemStringerShield® Stair Rail System1.800.804.4741safetyboot.com• Non-Penetrating Design• Rugged Steel Construction• Exceeds OSHA Regulations• Simple, Aordable & Reusable• Residential, Multi-Family & Commercial Applications• Unique Free Standing Design• Keep Post Attached For Reuse On Next Level Or ProjectFeatured on osha.gov website!for more informationChip Coughlan is the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic territory manager for the Insulfoam location in Lakeland, Florida. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.ON THE WEBRead about Insulfoam best practices in this article on mcsmag.com
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com44technology solutionwww.mcsmag.com44Moisture Meters handheld analyzers deliver lab-quality moisture readings in secondsPOINT-AND-MEASUREA crucial part of managing any large-scale construction project is staging the work as efficiently as possible so the crew and any subcontractors remain busy while maintaining building quality. However, when moisture or water is part of the equation, decisions about proceeding to next steps, waiting for materials to dry or cure, or even ensuring the ideal ratio of water in adhesives and slurry mixes can be even more critical. The risk can be quality issues, costly rework, mold, shrinking/expansion/warping of materials, and other construction matters. MOISTURE CONCERNSOn most construction sites, there can be uncertainty about moisture levels for a variety of reasons. Building materials can be unintentionally exposed to rain, snow, or humidity during framing; unexpected events such as plumbing leaks can occur; drying and curing times of adhesives, mastics, concrete, or other materials can be difficult to ascertain; and even the moisture content in raw materials, such as powders or lumber, may be unclear.Although the construction industry has access to moisture meters, to some extent, these tools typically require calibration, sampling, and time. In addition, they are not very flexible in measuring a variety of materials in various forms (wet, powder, solid) and certainly are not portable enough to be used on jobsites.PORTABLE MOISTURE METERFortunately, a new category of portable, handheld, instant moisture measurement devices are now available for construction workers that can be used on a wide range of materials with no special training. These “point-and-measure” units can be used at the jobsite wherever moisture is a problem or a specified moisture content needs to be known to proceed with work, whether that involves sand, aggregate, concrete mixes, adhesives, wood frame construction, drywall, or other materials. This new tool is helping expedite project completion and improve building quality for as little as $20 a day when the equipment is leased.SIMPLIFYING MEASUREMENTAlthough traditional laboratory and online based moisture measurement techniques are useful in the right settings, they have lacked the simplicity and flexibility required for frequent spot checks on a jobsite. One common test is Loss on Drying, which measures the total material weight change after drying. However, such tests typically require a sample to be prepared and brought to a lab. The test takes a minimum of 15 minutes up to several hours to perform.Because such traditional moisture tests are too slow, laborious, and alter or destroy the sample, they are not practical for construction sites. Instead, what is needed is a fast, easy “point-and-measure” method to determine moisture content.So, industry innovators have developed a simplified approach with testing equipment that utilizes Near-Infrared (NIR) light, a highly accurate, non-contact secondary measurement method that can deliver immediate, laboratory quality moisture readings.“NIR moisture meters allow very accurate instant measurement of solids, slurries, and liquids without contact or sample preparation in portable handheld models,” says John Bogart, managing director of Kett US, a manufacturer of a full range of moisture and organic composition analyzers.
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202045MEASURING MOISTURE CONTENTBogart says that once the meter has been calibrated against lab or production standards, the calibrations are stored in the device so no calibration is required in the field. The calibrations are stored in different “channels” in the unit, each dedicated to a specific type of building material. The user simply selects the proper channel and the measurement is instantly displayed.According to Bogart, NIR moisture meters follow the principle that water absorbs certain wavelengths of light. The meter reflects light off the sample, measures how much light has been absorbed, and the result is automatically converted into a moisture content reading. “You can use the NIR meters on anything where measuring surface moisture is important,” says Bogart. At a construction site, for example, an NIR meter could be used to instantly check the moisture level of bulk “dry” goods such as sand or aggregate on receipt from suppliers. It could also be used to spot check the moisture content of materials mixed with water.Bogart says the same approach could help to speed the installation of flooring or tile while ensuring quality control.“A NIR meter can determine if mastic or adhesive has the correct moisture content to properly bond floor, wall, and ceiling tiles so creep, shrinkage, buckling, or grout problems do not become an issue,” he says.When measuring moisture content inside a variety of building materials such as lumber, concrete, mortar, gypsum board, or OSB is necessary, portable electronic, contact gauge testers are also available.“Handheld contact gauges can measure the moisture inside many kinds of samples at superficial or deeper levels just seconds after contact with the material,” says Bogart. As an example, with lumber for framing, once the user sets the thickness of measurement and specific gravity of the wood and touches the sample with the instrument, the moisture content for all kinds of wood is instantly displayed. To avoid dimensional change problems, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wood Handbook recommends average moisture content of 15 percent or less, with maximum readings of 19 percent or less.CLOSING THOUGHTWhile the industry has not routinely spot-checked moisture levels in materials during construction, doing so consistently will significantly speed job completion and improve building quality by removing any doubt as to drying time or moisture content. for more information For more about Kett US and its full range of moisture and organic composition analyzers, visit www.kett.com.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com48safety solutionImpact of COVID-19 Q&A with construction software executive Dustin AndersonEXPERT COMMENTARYAs more construction workers return to jobsites, construction business owners are grappling with what the new normal looks like and how they can protect their workforce while keeping their business running.What changes should contractors expect on jobsites to reduce the risk of coronavirus?ANDERSON: While local laws vary, most are adjusting to different ways of working that involve less people on the jobsite at the same time, physical distancing on the jobsite whenever possible, and wearing PPE more often than they’re used to. Many projects are limiting interactions by allowing only one trade at a time on the jobsite, while some elements of the building process such as inspections are being done virtually to further reduce the number of people in a given location. Prefabrication is a growing trend in the industry that I think will likely continue to gain traction as well. Manufacturing things off site and assembling them on site can help streamline some processes and further help control the work environment. What else can businesses do to protect their employees?ANDERSON: Business owners can also look to their teams for suggestions and have an honest dialogue: What parts of the workflow need to be adjusted? How many people need to be on the jobsite at a time? What is keeping them up at night? It’s important to understand their needs and make necessary accommodations. We need a strong workforce to get through this. We’re already facing a qualified worker shortage so it is imperative for everyone to do everything they can to keep their employees healthy. What impact are these changes having on construction projects?ANDERSON: Most projects are expecting delays as teams adapt to new ways of working. Many have experienced a decrease in productivity as they are not able to do things as efficiently or as effectively as they have in the past. We’re also seeing less demand for certain types of projects in industries such as hospitality and retail. In this economic downturn people are being very careful about their spending, so some sectors are going to be slower to rebound.Are there sectors where you think there will be more opportunities for growth?ANDERSON: Yes, this pandemic has highlighted the need for growth in areas such as manufacturing. Many industries have experienced disruptions to their supply chains in part because so many goods are manufactured overseas. In order to bring manufacturing back to the U.S., we have to build more manufacturing facilities, so there will be new opportunities in that sector.We’ve also seen the need for more healthcare facilities so there will be opportunities for building new facilities as well as looking at how we might be able to update current facilities to increase capacity. Infrastructure is another area we may see new opportunities as there’s likely to be increased government spending in that sector to help keep the economy afloat. What other changes are you seeing in the industry?ANDERSON: With a limited number of new projects to bid on, firms are facing increased competition in their efforts to win new work. This environment often puts firms in a situation where they are taking on exceedingly risky work at almost zero profit just to keep their workforce hired and business moving forward. Firms also anticipate delays, supply chain issues, and price volatility to affect most of their projects for the foreseeable future, so they’re facing increased risk from every direction.Are there ways mitigate some of that risk?
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202049ANDERSON: While it’s difficult to navigate such a challenging environment there are definitely ways businesses can try to soften the impact. It’s essential for firms to have a business continuity plan in place to help them survive unexpected circumstances and tough economic times. It’s also important for businesses to conduct regular cash flow forecasts so they have a better handle on their finances and understand how certain scenarios will impact their bottom line. Financial implications as well delays and other external variables should be factored into the bidding process as much as possible. Many business owners will structure their contracts differently as they try to directly address some of the unknown variables in an effort to alleviate risk and provide more flexibility. They will want to ensure a broad force majeure clause is included in all contracts as well. Many businesses are also adding specific clauses related to COVID-19 safety measures in an effort to ensure subcontractor compliance and limit their liability. More businesses will also turn to technology for help as they search for ways to set themselves apart from the competition and work to minimize risk. What are some ways technology can help? ANDERSON: Technology has obviously played an integral role in keeping people connected and businesses up and running throughout this pandemic. Contractors have increasingly been adopting cloud-based solutions and mobile apps to help streamline projects, increase efficiency, improve collaboration, and keep their teams in sync, which is more important now than ever. Estimating software can also add a lot of value as it helps businesses produce faster, more accurate estimates, enabling them to pursue the right work at the right price. While accounting and project management solutions help provide firms with the visibility needed to make the best decisions for their business. As variables such as material costs or labor hours are affected, they can make updates and automatically project out the impact the changes will have on their budget. CLOSING THOUGHTAs we all learn to navigate this new normal, questions will undoubtedly arise. The industry has a wealth of resources available to help keep contractors updated and connected virtually—from industry resource pages to online webinars, conferences, and forums. It’s important to maintain our sense of community. The construction industry is resilient and will get through this together. for more information Dustin Anderson is vice president and general manager of Sage’s Construction and Real Estate practice in Beaverton, Oregon. He is a dynamic construction software executive with more than 20 years of success serving the industry.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com50safety solutionSocial Safety Apppractice social distancing with the help of technologyTECH TO THE RESCUEAs businesses reopen and people head back to work, safety is a big concern. Employers are taking measures to keep their employees safe, including sanitizing workspaces, implementing safe work practices, screening employees for symptoms, and providing PPE to all workers. HUMAN BEHAVIORThese measures certainly help, but ultimately human behavior is the biggest problem employers will need to manage. An upcoming tech solution can help. New York-based consulting firm FROM, The Digital Transformation Agency has developed a unique, easy-to-use, secure social distancing app that helps your employees keep approximately 6 feet away from each other at work. The Social Safety App is currently available in beta form by application, which can be accessed at socialsafety.app.“As people return to work, they will need to keep a safe distance from each other,” says CEO Howard Tiersky. “This social distancing app alerts anyone who gets too close to another person so they can quickly move away.”“Social Safety takes the guesswork out of social distancing,” adds Anis Dave, CTO of FROM and architect of the app. “It frees employees to stop worrying and focus on their work.”WHAT THE APP DOESHere are three ways the social distancing app gives employers and employees peace of mind.GENTLE REMINDER TO EMPLOYEES“Even well-meaning people will forget to practice social distancing as they get back into their routines,” says Tiersky. “The other day a delivery person rang my doorbell, and I nearly answered the door before stopping myself. Even after months of isolation, you still forget sometimes. We all need a little reminder to make sure we observe these rules, and the social distancing app provides that.”
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202051KEEPS LESS COMPLIANT EMPLOYEES IN CHECK“Workers don’t want to have to police each other or worry about a worker who doesn’t take social distancing seriously,” says Dave. “The social distancing app keeps everyone in check without any uncomfortable confrontations.”OVERALL STRESS REDUCERWhen employees are worried about safety and having to deal with irresponsible coworkers, they aren’t doing their best work. The social distancing app lets them relax and get focused on their job. HOW SOCIAL SAFETY WORKSThe employee installs the app on their phone and wears it on an armband while they attend work. If employees come within approximately 6 feet of each other, the social distancing app alerts them through beeps, vibration, and light display. As employees get closer together, the sounds and display become more urgent so there is no ambiguity or confusion about what to do. Visit socialsafety.app to view a video demonstrating the app in action.RECORD OF CONTACTAdditionally, the social distancing app keeps a secure, private record of accidental close contact between people at your business, so that in the case of infection, you will be able to warn employees of their potential exposure risk for self-quarantine purposes. CLOSING THOUGHT“A safe workplace is one where all employees are on board with social distancing,” concludes Tiersky. “With this social distancing app, workers can be sure they are doing the right thing all the time. It gives employers peace of mind. SOCIAL SAFETY TAKES THE GUESSWORK OUT OF SOCIAL DISTANCING AND FREES EMPLOYEES TO FOCUS ON THEIR WORK WITHOUT WORRY.for more information FROM, The Digital Transformation Agency helps companies adapt and evolve to win the love of today’s “digital customers.” The company has created many award-winning web and mobile products for shopping, banking, travel, financial services, and entertainment. For more, visit from.digital. For more about The Social Safety App or to apply to take part in its private beta release, visit socialsafety.app.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com54maintenance solutionSealing Concretetop five issues faced by contractorsAPPLICATION SUCCESSWhen a concrete sealer does not look or perform as expected, the root cause can usually be traced back to issues like overapplication, application in non-ideal conditions, or a buildup of multiple coats. Below are the top five most common concrete sealer issues that are encountered in the construction field, why they occur, and how contractors can avoid and/or fix them. SEALER BUBBLESThe presence of bubbles in concrete sealer is usually a result of a heavy product application. During application of the sealer, outgassing from the concrete surface should be free to quickly move through a thin, wet sealer film. For instance, at a typical coverage rate of 300 square feet per gallon, one coat of an acrylic concrete sealer should be about 5 mils thick when wet. However, when the sealer is dry, it should be only about 2 mils thick. As a point of reference, a sheet of copy paper is 10 mils thick, and a credit card is 120 mils thick. When the sealer is applied too heavily, the air displaced through the surface can’t escape, and it forms a bubble in the sealer surface. To resolve this, two thin coats should be applied, as opposed to one heavy coat.In addition, bubbling of a sealer can also occur if applied in hot weather or if the concrete is exposed to direct sunlight. Under these conditions, the sealer will “skin over” and dry on the surface before all of the solvent has evaporated. As the solvent attempts to evaporate, pressure buildup will form a bubble on the sealer surface. To avoid this issue, it’s best to apply concrete sealers during the coolest part of the day, when concrete is not in direct sunlight. SOLVENT-BASED SEALER TURNS WHITE, PEELS, OR FLAKESThere are two key contributors to “blushing,” or whitening, of a solvent-based concrete sealer. The first is application of the sealer to a wet concrete surface, or to fresh concrete that still contains bleed water. When this occurs, the sealer will not bond to the concrete surface, but will instead float on a trapped film of water. The second cause of sealer blushing is an application that is too thick. Heavy coats of sealer, or a buildup of sealer applied numerous times over the years, will lead to moisture becoming entrapped under the sealer and, in time, the sealer losing adhesion to the concrete. When this occurs, the trapped moisture and air under the de-bonded sealer creates a refractive index—in turn making the sealer appear white to the human eye and, eventually, peel or flake off the surface.To avoid this problem, be sure to carefully follow the manufacturer’s recommendations regarding coverage rate and the number of suggested coats. In addition, concrete should not be resealed until the previous coat(s) has worn away or been stripped off. Afterward, use a solvent wash and allow to fully dry. WATER-BASED SEALER IS WHITE OR POWDERYThe drying process of water-based sealers is quite complicated and significantly affected by the temperature and humidity of the environment during application. Water-based, acrylic sealers dry by a process called “coalescence,” during which the water and then the coalescing solvent evaporate so the acrylic particles fuse together to form the sealer film. If the temperature during application is too low or humidity is too high, the coalescing solvent will evaporate prior to the water, and the sealer will dry white or powdery as a result of the latex particles not fusing together before drying. As a best practice, always be sure to identify required temperature and humidity conditions for the successful application of a water-based sealer.To resolve this issue, pressure wash or scrub the concrete to remove any loose debris, before allowing the sealer to completely dry. Next, perform a solvent wash to bring remaining product back to the surface and to reestablish the seal. If a By Jennifer CrismanUneven ApplicationHeavy SealerSealer Bubbles
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202055solvent wash does not provide the gloss and seal desired, apply a very light coat of sealer after the solvent wash has dried. Concrete cure and seal solutions typically last 1-3 years, so some peeling and flaking should be expected as the product wears away—particularly in areas of high traffic or direct sunlight. When working with solvents, be sure to carefully follow the instructions and safety precautions outlined in the product data sheet and SDS.SEALER IS STAINED FROM WEAR AND TEAROver time, it’s not uncommon for concrete sealers to become stained from general wear and tear resulting from repeated or prolonged exposure to oil, tire treads, fertilizer, and other debris. The most common concrete sealers are manufactured with acrylic polymers that do not provide exceptional chemical or stain resistance for the concrete.In order to maximize durability and stain resistance, consider using an epoxy or urethane coating system, and ensure that the coating is appropriate for exterior use before applying to concrete in an outdoor environment.CONCRETE IS DARK AND/OR BLOTCHY AFTER SEALER APPLICATIONMost acrylic sealers will darken concrete and leave a glossy shine to some extent, giving the concrete a “wet” appearance. Because every slab is unique in its color and texture, the color of the concrete after sealer application can be difficult to predict. A variety of factors—such as mix design, use of chemical admixtures, finishing techniques, or porosity—can have an impact on concrete surface color.Using a sealer will deepen the true color of concrete and highlight disparities in the surface texture that result from floating and finishing. In addition, sealers bring out the “grain” in concrete, just like a varnish does on wood. If changing the concrete color after sealing is a concern, it’s recommended to use a penetrating, water-repellent sealer, or to perform a small test application of a film-forming sealer to ensure the result is acceptable before addressing the entire area.CLOSING THOUGHTThroughout the course of its lifetime, concrete suffers many different forms of damage. Though concrete sealers add a protective layer to concrete floors and structures to help maximize their durability and minimize moisture permeability, common issues associated with sealing concrete can be a source of frustration. Knowing these five common issues will be beneficial for application success. about the author Jennifer Crisman is director of marketing services at The Euclid Chemical Company, a leading manufacturer of specialty concrete and masonry construction solutions. For more, visit www.euclidchemical.com.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com56maintenance solutionTrack Padsincrease the work life of a steel-tracked undercarriageOPTIMIZING THE BOTTOM LINEThe construction industry is constantly evolving with new equipment innovations and technologies to help your machines and operations run optimally. There is a tool for every job, but as long as humans have been building, few things rarely change: 1) having the right tool for the job, and 2) operation and maintenance matters.Most major OEM’s note that undercarriage represents an average of 50 percent of your machine’s owning and operating costs. Routine maintenance and inspection of the undercarriage are critically important to optimizing the life of these components. Further extending the undercarriage life can be done with the use of quality rubber or polyurethane track pads. Identifying the culprits of undercarriage wear is first and foremost the best way to understand how track pads lend a hand in protecting your equipment’s undercarriage.What causes undercarriage wear and premature failure?Friction, abrasion, and uneven wear/loading are an undercarriage’s worse nightmare. Any one or combination of these can result in undercarriage wear, damage, and failure if not properly handled through regular preventive maintenance programs, combined with correct equipment operation as recommended by the manufacturer.Several factors lead to an increase in undercarriage wear: track tension, operation of components past their wear limits, premature parts failures, and operation on hard surfaces. The consequences of increased track wear and lack of preventive maintenance and/or inspection can be severe. An increase in maintenance costs is the most critical aspect affecting a contractor’s bottom line, but downtime can be far more costly. Increased wear leads to more frequent replacements, removing the machine from service, and additional labor costs.What can you do to reduce undercarriage wear?Through proper preventive and operational maintenance, best practices, and following the manufacturer’s recommendations, you can improve equipment efficiency, reduce wear, and extend the life of the undercarriage. Simple steps like tracking machine hours, monitoring part replacement cycles, daily inspection, and cleaning are just a few ways to improve undercarriage wear. In addition, rubber and polyurethane track pads can help reduce wear on your undercarriage.What are Track Pads? Track pads are designed to protect surfaces from damage caused by steel tracks. Typically made from rubber or polyurethane, they can be attached to either the steel grouser shoe or bolt directly to the chain and are often used in place of plywood, sand, or mats. Track pads allow the machine to be operated as intended on any surface without the need for additional personnel or movement of a substitute material.Rubber track pads are intended for operation on smooth, flat surfaces. Generally, rubber track pads provide better traction but are susceptible to damage by hard debris. Newer to the industry, polyurethane track pads have a higher cut/tear/abrasion resistance and offer 3-4 times longer wear-life. Intended for a wider range of applications than rubber and are only slightly more expensive, making them a far superior option. Ron Johnson, owner of Riverbend Equipment, did a test comparing rubber track pads against polyurethane track pads on two machines working on the same job. Johnson states, “We’ve always used rubber track pads for all of our mid-large size excavators, but we wanted to optimize our maintenance routine. We tried the polyurethane CUSHOTRAC® ReDDi™ pad side by side with the OEM Rubber and polyurethane track pads can help reduce wear on your undercarriage.
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202057rubber, the results were staggering. The polyurethane pads had minimal wear after 1800+ hours and the rubber pads were peeling off the steel core.” In Riverbend’s typical operations, switching to a polyurethane track pad reduced their maintenance costs significantly and eliminated unexpected downtime in the field. “I’ve changed my entire fleet over to the polyurethane ReDDi track pads—they’re guaranteed to last and that’s one less thing I have to worry about,” says Johnson.How do track pads help reduce undercarriage wear?The primary purpose of rubber or poly track pads is to provide a less aggressive and softer contact with harder concrete or asphalt surfaces. This “cushion” effect of track pads naturally absorbs the impact of the machine’s operation and vibration, reducing undercarriage friction and minimizing track slippage. Another bonus is significant noise reduction—like comparing nails on a chalkboard to an eraser. Operator comfort improves and noise complaints drop with the use of rubber or poly track pads.TRACK PAD MOUNTING STYLESCLAMP/CLIP-ON: Pads that clamp or clip over the existing steel grouser shoes. No modification to the equipment is required and installation is the fastest of any style of track pad—typically in 2-4 hours for a full set. Intended for temporary use and should be removed when not needed. BOLT-TO-SHOE: Pads that bolt directly through steel grouser shoes. In some cases, steel grousers require drilling for bolt placement. Commonly found in road milling machines. BOLT-TO-LINK/CHAIN: Pads that are fitted with steel inserts/cores and bolted directly to the chain links, eliminates the need for steel grouser shoes. No modification to equipment is required. Optimal choice for excavators, but can be used on other steel tracked machines. CUSHOTRAC ReDDi track pads are Bolt to Link/Chain style pads.MOLD-ON: Pads that are molded to a steel grouser shoe and bolt directly to the chain.CLOSING THOUGHTAs you approach your next tear down/maintenance season, or have a project that requires surface protection, invest in the operation and maintenance of the machine—be sure you are not stepping over a dollar to save a dime. for more information For more about track pads by Superior Tire & Rubber Corp., visit www.superiortire.com. • Well Rehab Products• Manholes• Bentonite• Filter Sock• Inline Chemical Mixers• Sampling Bailers• Clear PVC Pipe• Locking CapsAtlantic Screen& Manufacturing, Inc.Manufacturers of slotted & perforated pipe ranging from ½” to 24” in diameter302-684-3197Fax 302-684-0643142 Broadkill Road ■ Milton, DE 19968www.atlantic-screen.com ■ email@example.comSOLUTIONS FOR 80 YEARSBUILDING INNOVATIVE TRANSPORT TALBERTMFG.COM | 800-348-5232NOTHING BETTER BETWEEN THE LOAD AND THE ROAD!
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com58maintenance solutionChipping Hammersproper use and maintenance adds to tool lifeBEST PRACTICESChipping hammers are small in nature but can be incredibly impactful on the jobsite. An economical tool that gives contractors a bang for their buck, chipping hammers can take operators a long way if used on the appropriate applications and properly maintained.The general application for chipping hammers is strictly light demolition, such as chipping out an old brick wall or mortar, etc. Operators should never use a chipping hammer on concrete too thick or in larger-scale jobs like parking garage surface demolition. This results in a short lifespan of the tool. Instead, the use of rivet busters is a great alternative for bigger jobs. CHIPPING HAMMERS VARIATIONSThere are a large variety of chipping hammers on the market. The options include the style of hammer, cylinder length, and design. Style. There is a four-bolt unit, which holds the hammer together by the bolts, or a screw-on chipping hammer, on which the handle screws onto the barrel. Cylinder length. The standard cylinder lengths range from 3 to 4 inches. While not as common, some manufacturers also feature a 2-inch cylinder configuration. Design. While the principle of chipping hammers is the same, the design of hammers can be different. And, some manufacturers feature more variations than others.Typically, the most prominent design change from one to the other is the handle and trigger positions, based on user preference. There is the “D” handle or an open handle, which appears more like a gooseneck or pistol grip and can offer the user more flexibility. Additionally, there is either an outside or inside trigger. Chipping hammers have multiple retainers, but this does not detract from their hitting power. They all offer about the same power and blows per minute. Rather, it is a matter of different features matching up to the user’s application or whichever user-preference they have. AIR COMPRESSOR MATCHChipping hammers require minimal air pressure at 90 psi. This makes it easy to run a gang of hammers off of the common 185 cubic feet per minute (CFM) air compressor. CFM ranges from the smallest hammer taking 20 CFM up to the biggest hammer at 35 CFM (hammers typically do not exceed 35 CFM). TOOL MAINTENANCE Daily Use• Tightness of the tool• On a four-bolt unit, always ensure handle is tight and still has all four bolts and nuts• For a screw-on, check to see the handle is screwed on all the way and is not backing off• If the chipping hammer has a spring retainer, check the integrity of the spring. If it is bent or has lost its integrity and starts to trend to a more oval shape, change itMonthly• Take the tool apart • Clean it out• Lubricate• Put the chipping hammer back together Oiler. To increase the lifespan, it is crucial to always run an oiler. Chipping hammers do not have any onboard oilers, so run an By Andrew Mayer
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202059inline oiler to consistently lubricate the tool. The oiler should be placed about 6 to 10 feet in line from the tool. Retainers. There are different types of retainers throughout the industry, which can be confusing. Quick-change retainers are one style that has become much more common. For quick-change retainers, pull back the sleeve and insert the steel. This uses a round collar steel.Operators have moved away from spring retainers because the spring is a wear item. With a quick-change retainer, operators do not have to worry about the spring, which makes it easier to change out the tools. If the tool does have a spring retainer, pull the spring out, remove the retainer, put the steel shank into the cylinder, then the retainer will go over the steel and the spring should be inserted to hold the retainer on. Be sure to use an oval collar for spring retainers. Chipping hammers are simple to maintain, but providing daily and monthly checks will ensure a longer lifespan of the tool. BAD PRACTICESLike any air tool, avoiding dry firings is crucial. This will wear down the components and it will rapidly exhaust the hammers that feature spring-on retainers. A common bad practice is using the tool on larger applications. Operators use the smaller tool because it is lighter and easier on them. But, by doing so, they are rapidly wearing out the chipping hammer, breaking the retainer and damaging the springs. Other bad practices to avoid are putting in 18-inch chisels and prying with them. This action places a lot of stress on the retainer and chuck of the tool, ultimately resulting in breaking the hammer. CLOSING THOUGHTChipping hammers may be small, but by performing proactive maintenance and utilizing them in the right applications, they will quickly maximize the return on investment. Editors Note: Having the right tool for the job is of vital importance. As a business owner, what is your tool of choice for leadership expertise? Let me know what’s in your master toolbox for safety talks, jobsite trailer meetings, and project inspections. Email firstname.lastname@example.org the author Andrew Mayer is the business development manager, light equipment at Chicago Pneumatic Power Technique (CP). CP’s goal is to deliver best-in-class global service and local support to industrial customers through a network of authorized distributors. For more, visit www.cp.com/en-us.
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com60WE BUILD STUFF, TOO.
MANUFACTURERS OF SLOTTED & PERFORATED PIPE RANGING FROM ½” TO 24” IN DIAMETER142 Broadkill Road ♦ Milton, DE 19968 ♦ www.atlantic-screen.com ♦ email@example.comAtlantic Screen& Manufacturing, Inc.302-684-3197Fax 302-684-0643•WellRehabProducts•Manholes•Bentonite•FilterSock•InlineChemicalMixers•SamplingBailers•ClearPVCPipe•LockingCaps
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202063PLAY VIDEO
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com64modern construction productsCaterpillar pin grabber couplers allow the operator to change tools in a matter of seconds rather than minutes. Excavators of similar sizes can share attachments. Pin grabber couplers are weighted to handle big payloads when added to a machine and bucket combination, without having to compromise on the bucket size. Pin grabber couplers feature a redundant locking system, ensuring attachments are secure to the coupler. Adding the versatility of a pin grabber coupler allows you to switch from digging, grading, material handling, compacting soil, breaking rocks, and more with ease. Using the pin grabber coupler also gives you the ability to pick a bucket up in reverse position to clean out square corners. For more, visit www.cat.com.National Fleet Products announces its new portable and vehicle-mounted hand-washing stations. The rugged, purpose-built product design allows water and hand sanitizer to be dispensed virtually anywhere, and application-specific hardware enables units to stand on their own, or to be mounted to a wide variety of vehicles. The black or translucent white water-dispensing tanks come in 6.5-gallon and 10-gallon sizes and are made of durable, virgin polypropylene with an additive that makes them resistant to UV rays. An integrated removable soap dispenser serves as the cap to the filling port, and a separate cap is also available. For more, visit www.nationalfleetproducts.com.Milwaukee Tool introduces the M12™ Radio + Charger. This new jobsite audio solution allows users to turn up the sound with a full range speaker, a tweeter, and multiple hanging options. The first solution on the M12 System with charging functionality, the M12 Radio + Charger features a 12V DC port for quick, convenient charging of all M12 batteries. Additionally, a 2.1 USB port delivers fast charging for electronic devices like mobile phones and tablets. A full range speaker and tweeter deliver clear mids and highs. From up to 100 ft away, users can stream high definition music wirelessly via Bluetooth® connection from any electronic device. For more, visit www.milwaukeetool.com.Steel King Industries, Inc., announces its new bolted Pallet Load Stop Option. Designed for heavy use applications, the Pallet Load Stop provides an added layer of protection for personnel safety and inventory loss. The pallet stoppers allow perfect placement of pallets every time—providing a fixed 6-inch flue space for pallet rack applications. The pallet safety stops allow for ventilation and provide space for fire suppression sprinklers above the racks to penetrate product stored in racks. The new bolt together pallet load stop design provides users with the flexibility of either a 3-inch or 4-inch set back using the same clip. Popular bay widths of 96 inch, 108 inch, and 144 inch are stock items. For more, visit www.steelking.com.Auger Technologies introduces Bullet Tooth Puller, an innovative device to quickly and safely remove even the most stubborn conical auger bits from augers, cold planers, asphalt grinders, and other equipment with conical bits in blind holes. Powered either manually or with an impact wrench (not provided), the Bullet Tooth Puller removes conical auger teeth in a fraction of the time normally required, saving time and money. Simply fit the split-ring Bullet Tooth Puller collet over the conical auger bit, then slide the driver arm over the collet, locking it in place. Drive the extractor screw which in turn backs out the tooth. Once out, reverse the motion on the extractor screw to remove the tooth from the collet. For more, visit www.augertech.net.Dri-Dek self-draining compartment liner is quietly finding its way onto thousands of commercial work trucks. Dri-Dek cushions and protects not only tools and valuable equipment, but the truck body as well. The flexible, elevated, and ventilated anti-skid surface provides a dry and protective barrier by allowing air to circulate under stowed gear. Quick and easy to install, the 12x12-inch interlocking tiles snap together and trim to fit any size. The liner is also offered in interlocking 3x4-ft sheets and 3x12-ft rolls and available everywhere from finer truck equipment dealers and manufacturers. For more, visit www.dri-dek.com.CATERPILLARPin Grabber Couplers NATIONAL FLEET PRODUCTS Hand-Washing StationMILWAUKEE TOOLM12 Radio + ChargerSTEEL KING Pallet Load StopsAUGER TECHNOLOGIESBullet Tooth Puller DRI-DEKCompartment Liner
www.mcsmag.com JUNE 202065Kapro Tools introduces its 353 LEDGE-IT Square with a retractable metal ledge support. The 353 LEDGE-It Square is a certified 90° durable square, featuring a unique retractable ledge support for stabilizing the tool on any surface. The 353’s handle is made of cast aluminum with three precision-milled surfaces, 45° and 30° cast-in handle platforms. The stainless-steel ruler has permanently etched gradation. The first 4 inches are incremented 1/32 for fine and accurate measurements, extending to 1/16 of an inch for the remainder of the blade’s length. The 353’s blade has marking holes at 10°, 15°, 22.5°, 30°, 45°, 50°, and 60° for angle marking and includes openings every ¼ inch for fluid and parallel pencil markings. For more, visit www.kapro.com.Better Built announces the release of a Pro value line of nine new jobsite storage products. All Better Built jobsite storage products include a staked/welded hinge and one-time installation lock system with recessed housing to protect against break-ins. All chest lids are manufactured with a single locking spreader, which ensures safety when opening by allowing the user to support the lid with one hand while closing it with another. A powder coat finish protects the Better Built jobsite products against harsh weather, while the fully arc welded construction provides long-lasting durability. Made with 16-gauge steel, Better Built jobsite storage solutions are designed to last. For more, visit www.lifebetterbuilt.com.Gloves In A Bottle is a Shielding Lotion™. A Shielding Lotion is a lotion that bonds with the outermost layer of skin cells, enhancing the skin’s ability to retain natural oils and moisture. For continued protection, simply reapply within 4 to 12 hours, depending on the frequency of your hand washing and amount of exposure. Gloves In A Bottle is vegan, dermatologist tested and prescribed, hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores), cruelty free, and every ingredient is on the FDA’s most safe list. Gloves In A Bottle is available with or without SPF. It can be used on the hands, feet, body, and even the face. For more, visit www.glovesinabottle.com/shielding-lotion-store. American Eagle announces the release of the new 40P compressor, a lightweight hydraulically-driven air compressor. The 40P is a reciprocating compressor that uses a combination of aluminum and steel to control the weight of the unit while maintaining market-recognized longevity. With a compressor weighing 240 lbs, an operator is not sacrificing unit payload while producing a maximum air output of 40 cfm and up to 150 psi of air pressure. By being direct-driven off of a hydraulic motor, there is no need for belts that require replacement over time. The hydraulic requirements to operate the compressor fit most applications at 12 gpm and 2100 psi. For more, visit www.americaneagleacc.com.The new LiftMaster 4000 lift table from LiftWise® has a fully lowered height of only 8.5 inches. It can be used to lift and lower a wide variety of parts into the ideal position for maintenance, service, and other needs. Featuring a low profile and compact design, the LiftMaster 4000 is a valuable addition to any heavy equipment shop, repair facility, or other service operation. The LiftMaster 4000 has a maximum capacity of 4,000 lbs when raised. Fully extended, the lifting table rises to 27 inches. A wide pedestal with vertical protrusions gives the lifting surface a saddle-like feel to allow for safely securing loads. For more, visit www.lift-wise.com.Lumax’s New Counter-Top Display puts the Magnetic LED Light within Easy Reach of Customers. The LX-1436-DB comes with 24 Units of LX-1436 Magnetic LED Lights that can easily be restocked. The Magnetic LED Light can attach securely to most Hand Tools and is ideal for use on Grease Guns, Screwdrivers, Wrenches, Pliers, Ratchets, etc. It lights up dark work areas in seconds. The Strong Magnets hold on to the tool securely during operation and will not fall off. The Compact Lightweight Design, only weighing 0.25 ounces. The Lumax Magnetic LED Light has a long-life lithium battery that lasts up to 7 hours of continuous use. 3 x L736F Replaceable Button-Cell Batteries are included in the product. For more, visit www.lumax.com.KAPRO TOOLS 353 LEDGE-IT Square BETTER BUILT Jobsite Storage SolutionsGLOVES IN A BOTTLE Shielding LotionAMERICAN EAGLE 40P Air CompressorLIFTWISE4000 Lift TableLUMAXMagnetic LED Light
JUNE 2020 www.mcsmag.com66What started in 1964 in Elburn, Illinois, as a way for Illinois Bell to get equipment manufacturers to show off their latest and greatest to its employees, “The Elburn Show,” which became ICUEE, is now The Utility Expo, emphasizing its commitment to focus on the needs of utility industry professionals.THE SHOW HAS GROWNSince moving The Utility Expo (then ICUEE) to the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville in 1987, the show has consistently grown, and provided more and better solutions to those involved in every sector of the utility industry. The show has grown so much since then that, just recently, Trade Show News Network (TSNN) certified ICUEE as the second-largest trade show in America in 2019, behind only the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.IMPROVED FOR 2021The people who produce The Utility Expo aren’t rest-on-your-laurels types. They have been listening to what attendees and exhibitors want to see more of, less of, and what they would like entirely new, and those ideas are being followed through. It was heard loud and clear that while attendees and exhibitors loved the show, most folks didn’t understand the name. The show is more than just a construction show or a safety conference or an underground or overhead equipment show. It’s the place for everything you need if you’re in the utility construction industry. It’s where the utility industry goes to grow. Simply put, it is The Utility Expo.One thing that won’t change is the ability for utility and construction pros to see equipment in action. It’s nice to see brand new equipment, clean and on the show floor—but nothing tells a utility professional more than seeing that equipment in action. That’s who we are—it’s in our DNA and it’s only going to get better. ABOUT THE UTILITY EXPO Formerly known as ICUEE, The Utility Expo is the largest event for utility professionals and construction contractors seeking comprehensive insights into the latest industry technologies, innovations, and trends. The Utility Expo is continuing its focus to help industry professionals connect better with each other, learn about the latest technologies, and hear recommendations from experts through our innovative education opportunities.SAVE THE DATEThe biennial trade show, known for equipment test drives and interactive product demonstrations, takes place in Louisville, Kentucky, in September 2021. This is going to be one you can’t miss. To be the first to get the latest information from The Utility Expo, visit www.theutilityexpo.com/show-alerts. Words by John Rozum, Show Director, The Utility ExpoMORE THAN JUST A NEW NAMEThe Utility Expo new name reflects growth in both size and purposeLouisville, Kentucky September 28–31, 2021www.theutilityexpo.com