Progress takes center stage

Perma-Column brings new era to post-frame in Canada
Perma-Column precast concrete columns are bringing a new era to post-frame construction by offering the product to western Canada markets.

Al Williams is co-owner of Integrity Post Structures and the exclusive Canadian distributor for Perma-Columns, the precast concrete columns that allow for  concrete foundations.

Tested by both Wisconsin and Purdue Universities, Perma-Columns are shown to outperform the industry standard of wood columns. They use self-contacting concreted precasting technology to provide triple strength of standard concrete. Microfibers add shock resistance and durability.

Microsilica enhances flexural/compressive strength and erosion resistance. A corrosion inhibitor protects the reinforcement from rusting. A final admixture gives freeze/thaw protection.

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Recycling turns old shingles into road paving materials
CertainTeed Corporation is teaming up with East Coast Shingle Recyclers, Inc., of Lansdale, Pa., to launch Roofing Responsibly, a shingle recycling program that provides an environmentally friendly option for shingle disposal.

CertainTeed recycles waste at all of it nine shingle manufacturing plants throughout the United States and has been exploring shingle recycling models.

The program lets contractors incorporate job-site recycling for virtually the same cost as a typical waste dumper and disposal. Contractors schedule the delivery of a compartmentalized dumper to a worksite. Shingles, wood and nails are placed in the containers managed by East Coast Shingle Recyclers. The old shingles are recycled into paving materials that are used in road construction.

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Schweiss Bi-Fold Doors offers 10-year warranty
In the commercial door world, a 10-year warranty on mechanical functions is unheard of, according to Schweiss Bi-Fold Doors. But not for Schweiss Bifolds.

The Minnesota company says customer satisfaction has been so universally supportive that Schweiss now is providing a 10-year warranty on its popular Lift Strap mechanism.

Since the patented Lift Strap was introduced 12 years ago, Schweiss says it has yet to replace a system because of mechanical failure. With 29,000-lb. tensile strength, this nylon strap is virtually fail-safe. It was initially marketed with a 3-year warranty.

Mike Schweiss said, “Engineering competence and structural integrity are trademarks of our products. Extending to a 10-year warranty on our Lift Strap units is simply showing our customers that they can expect total performance on a Schweiss door system.”

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Weyerhaeuser Lumin plywood fits variety of applications
Weyerhaeuser’s new Lumin hardwood and softwood plywood is derived from plantation-grown eucalyptus and pine. Panels are available in various grades and lay-up configurations and are competitively priced to satisfy the demands of a variety of plywood users.

Lightweight, flat and strong for high performance, it is available in two lay-up configurations  for specific needs and aesthetics. The all-eucalyptus plywood panels are available in seven grades, including four proprietary grades. The Combi-panel, which pairs the strength of eucalyptus core veneers with traditional pine face layer, comes in three standard grades.

Lumin products can be seen at the 2010 International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta in late August.

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Gift from Mitsubishi aids Houston Habitat for Humanity
Houston-based manufacturer Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America Inc. (MCFA) recently donated a Cat lift truck model NR4000P to Houston Habitat for Humanity. The organization will use the 4,000-pound capacity reach truck at Houston Habitat for Humanity ReStore to assist with the lifting and moving of construction materials.

The Houston Habitat for Humanity ReStore sells home improvement items to the public at greatly reduced prices. Proceeds help support of the Houston Habitat for Humanity mission.

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‘Rockin’ for the Troops’ gets support from Case

Case Construction Equipment, which helps support Illinois military families and veterans, sponsored the fifth annual “Rockin’ for the Troops” concert in mid-July in Winfield, Ill. Actor Gary Sinise’s Lt. Dan Band, performed at this outdoor concert that annually draws 10,000 people to Cantigny Park’s military museum in west suburban Chicago.
Operation Support Our Troops – Illinois is a volunteer-based organization that supports the Hines Veterans Health Administration Hospital and multiple military-related causes. Through its first four years, “Rockin’ for the Troops” raised $1.5 million on behalf of eight service organizations.

Case is producing several thousand military skid steers and compact track loaders as part of a $160 million contract with the U.S. Army. The equipment is manufactured in Wichita, Kans.

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Product of Year award goes to Orion Energy Systems

Orion Energy Systems Inc. was honored June 16 with the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE)-Professional Engineers in Industry’s 2010 Product of the Year award for the power technology enterprise’s direct renewable Apollo solar light pipe. The product is designed to take customers off the grid for up to 10 hours a day.

The Apollo solar light pipe harvests daylight and directs it to the work area of a facility using no electricity. When integrated with a facility’s lighting systems and ambient light sensors, when illumination levels from light pipes reach a desired point, electric lights automatically shut off, all or in part, until needed.

 The Apollo light pipe has been deployed at some of Orion’s largest customers, including Coca-Cola Enterprises, Sysco Foods, MillerCoors and Apple. The U.S. Army recently installed more than 1,300 Apollo solar light pipes at Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas.

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Clean Burn launches new interactive web site
Clean Burn, manufacturers of energy systems that transform used motor oil into free heat, has introduced a new web site at

The interactive site includes an innovative “Compare” feature that encourages visitors to compare the components of Clean Burn units to those found in converted fuel oil furnaces, factory-direct furnaces and blast tube furnaces.

The site also features product information, tips on selecting the right furnace for the right setting, product manuals and warranties, videos, a distributor locator and environmental information.

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Green Building experts: Use LEED as guide, not law
Green building is an integral part of the A/E industry, but many design and construction professionals who’ve worked on successful green building projects encourage their peers to change the way they look at LEED and green building. That’s according to ZweigWhite’s latest publication, “5 Must-Know A/E Lessons in Green Building.”

“Don’t get bogged down in LEED points. Decide what’s best for the site, the owner, and the project. And then disregard LEED points if they aren’t what’s best,” says Sam Batchelor, designLAB architects project manager and project architect for the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) World Headquarters building in Yarmouth Port, Mass. “LEED provides a great framework for evaluation and comparing buildings but it’s in service of your goal, not the goal itself.”

Often, a green building project involved in LEED certification can benefit from working with a LEED consultant. These consultants also encourage design teams to stop looking at LEED as a burden.

“5 Must-Know A/E Lessons in Green Building” offers an update on the green building market along with five case studies that let A/E professionals learn from all of the key players in these successful green building projects.

To order a print or electronic PDF copy, visit

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