The latest from Raven

Announcements

Main content

Raven Supply Hits the Road (Again)! Making Visits to Our Friends in Michigan and Indiana

Linna and Merinda poise outside the Niles Factory in Michigan

This April, two of our team members headed south to spend time getting know the people behind the products we support.

Inside Sales Engineer Merinda Widmer and Project Engineer Linna Luu hopped on a plane heading to the Midwest of the good ol’ U.S. of A to stop in and visit two of our vendors.

First stop was Niles Steel Tanks in Niles, Michigan. Niles Steel Tanks fabricates custom built pressure vessels for a variety of industries, and we often use their products on commercial and institutional projects throughout BC.

“We were very impressed at just how organized this factory is, especially with so many things going on,” remarked Merinda. A highlight of the visit was seeing the process it takes to make the Ultonium™ glass lining that Niles uses for their hot water applications.

Tanks being manufactured at Niles Steel

“It was fascinating to see the vessels being fired at 1500° F, the melting point of Ultonium™, and then “soaked” at that temperature for a period of time, which bonds the Ultonium™ to the steel substrate,” she says.

Merinda and Linna were also amused by a blast from the past when their guide Terry shared some photos from the earliest days of Niles Steel Tanks. The photos showed tanks being built from the ground up in the back of trucks! Even more remarkable though is previous owner Jerome C. Woods’ legacy of helping to develop the ASME code that is now a standard required of all boiler supplies.

Niles Steel tanks wait to be shipped in Michigan

Next up on the itinerary was a quick road trip south to Peru, Indiana, home of the Byran Steam factory.

Bryan Steam has been in the steam business for more than 100 years, and is the leader in flexible water tubing. In fact, their flexible water tubes were a staple of steam operated tractors- that is, until motors overtook this market.

These days, Bryan Steam has transformed their water tube technology into leading boiler products. Bryan Steam has an advantage over other boiler manufacturers because they manufacture boilers that can be disassembled at the factory and the reassembled at their final destination. This is especially important in locations with restricted space, for example when a contractor needs to replace a boiler in a mechanical room with limited access.

Linna and Merinda stand outside the Bryan Steam factory in Peru, Indiana

“Visiting Bryan was such a good experience,” says Linna. “Witnessing a knock down boiler in person really makes you appreciate all the work that goes into manufacturing a flexible tube boiler.”

But Merinda and Linna weren’t just sightseeing- they were at Bryan Steam with a specific project in mind.

An inside view of the Bryan flexible tube boiler

“Bryan Steam is providing the knock down boiler we’re using in our retrofit project with Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital. This is the first time we’ve used one of these knock-down models,” explains Linna. Linna and Merinda were there to learn first hand the ins and outs of knocking down and reassembling the Bryan Steel boiler for this project. To find out more about our involvement in this rural healthcare initiative, please click here.

Their time in Peru, Indiana wasn’t all work though- the Bryan Steam team took our Raven Supply roadtrippers out for a meal.

“For lunch, we enjoyed a favourite local restaurant, where we were introduced to the famous pork tenderloin sandwich,” recalls Linna, laughing.

Now Merinda and Linna are back, and armed with even more knowledge to bring to our projects and customers. Feel free to ask them more about their travels next time you’re in the office.

Toronto Manufacturer Trip

Bennett, Nic, and Ashley went to Toronto for training this week at both the Weishaupt and De Dietrich offices. Raven has recently been appointed the Reps for BC and the Yukon for both product lines. They received in depth product training on Burners and Boilers, their operation and construction. They were very impressed by the high quality engineering and manufacturing of both product lines.

 

Northern Adventure

This past week, Brian and Ashley headed up North to Whitehorse to visit our customers before the snow started falling, with lows of -3, it sometimes felt as if it was snowing! From the beginning of the trip, they were greeted with some great small town hospitality, welcomed by each contractor they were able to visit. They also had the opportunity to visit some old job sites, see the 3rd photo for the Bryan Steam boiler building in the new Whistlebend complex, a project we supplied a Bryan Steam boiler and A-Vent to (note the truck stuck in the mud in the corner of the photo).

With a city of only 20,000 people they were amazed to see the size of the Canada Games Centre located just outside of downtown, an amazing facility with an indoor pool, multiple skating rinks, an indoor soccer field, indoor basketball court, gym, fitness studio & a running track overlooking it all on the 3rd floor. See the view from the Centre in the 4th photo! Ashley couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try out this facility and spent the evening here.

Lucky enough to soak in some of the beauty Whitehorse had to offer, they experienced some of the longest most beautiful sunsets. Whitehorse is also known as “The Land of the Midnight Sun” however at this time of year the sun is setting around 9:30 PM. Another sight to see is Miles Canyon, during the gold rush there was a railroad track along the canyon, parts of it can still be seen today! This is one of the larger attractions in Whitehorse, and very popular with hikers and mountain bikers!

Hope you enjoyed an inside look at Raven’s trip to the Land of the Midnight Sun!

Polypropylene – Did You Know?

Recycle chart - post 2Polypropylene is Recyclable! PP is categorized as “Level 5” within the plastics recycle symbols standard. Where accepted, this plastic can be dropped into blue boxes and processed for re-use.

According to the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA), Canadians recycled almost 600 million pounds of plastic in 2011.

Over time, scale build-up in boilers and water heaters can cause heat exchangers to lose transfer efficiency. Plugged air filters can cause short-cycling in furnaces leading to over-heating. Problems like these can cause flue gas temperatures to climb beyond the capabilities of the venting material! These facts should be considered carefully when selecting a venting system.

There is more to installing PVC and CPVC pipe than cutting & gluing the pieces together. There is a long list of steps that should be followed while installing solvent welded pipe.

Common pitfalls that lead to problems with solvent welded pipe?

Temp Chart - Post 2

  • Failure to properly cut, debur, chamfer, and clean pipe according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Not using primer, or using the wrong primer/cement
  • Using primer/cement that is too hot or too cold
  • Using primer/cement on pipe that is too hot or too cold
  • Application of too much or too little primer/cement
  • Failure to hold pieces together until they have set
  • Failing to follow directions as to curing time (24-48HR)
  • Failure to follow pipe support instructions

UV Protection Is Required
Like all plastics, polypropylene can be damaged if exposed to direct sunlight for extended periods. To prevent degradation, installers should always use Black UV treated PP pipe when terminating.