Results tagged “new products” from Scotts EQuip
If you use any of Victor Technologies' gas or plasma cutting equipment, you could get your picture into their 2014 corporate calendar and win some new tools in the process. Victor Tech. has just announced two contests as part of the celebrations of it's 100th year as a company.
Take a picture of yourself using any Victor Tech. tool you own and supply a 75 word caption describing how those tools help you in the workshop and you're well on your way to entering. There are full contest rules and examples of winners of previous similar contests on the company's website: www.victortechnologies.com/victor100.
This is how the company announced the two contests:
“Victor Technologies today (May 10) launched two contests as part of its celebration of the 100th anniversary of its Victor brand of cutting and gas control equipment.
“The A Cut Above contest is open to students in cutting, welding and related programs at secondary and post-secondary schools and will award more than $30,000 in equipment and cash prizes. Beginner students will write a 500-word essay supporting the contest theme, while advanced students will submit a team metal fabrication project that incorporates an oxy-fuel, air-fuel or plasma cutting process.
“The Show Us Your Innovations 2014 calendar contest will award 12 Victor Medalist 250 Cutting Outfits and — a Victor Thermal Dynamics CUTMASTER 42 plasma cutter as the Grand Prize — for the best photos and associated captions of the entrant using any Victor or Victor Thermal Dynamics cutting equipment.
“'These contests celebrate the spirit of our end users who have used Victor equipment for over the past 100 years. Winners will demonstrate innovation, craftsmanship and an appreciation for quality tools that enable them to shape their world,' says Martin Quinn, CEO, Victor Technologies.
“Both contests start today and run through September, with winners announced at the Victor Technologies booth at FABTECH 2013 Expo in Chicago. Contests are open to individuals with a passion for cutting and welding who are residents of the United States or Canada (excluding Quebec).”
At the end of June, John Deere held a “technology summit” in downtown Des Moines, Iowa. Members of the farm media were invited, so I along with the usual gang of writers working for publications in Canada and the U.S. showed up. But this time the majority of attendees were financial securities analysts. To say that gave this event a different flavour would be an understatement.
And the people attending the event from John Deere, itself, weren't the usual people either. Among those putting in an appearance was none other than David Everitt, the president of its North American Ag and Turf Division. Senior executives of that stature don't usually show up for ordinary product launches. But this launch was aimed not only at getting the information out to farmers about some of the company's new telematics products, but also to the investment community to demonstrate the progressive nature of the firm and bolster investor confidence.
Typically, farm journalists understand agricultural machinery and how farms work. When an equipment manufacturer introduces new products at an event like this, the questions asked tend to be about the nuts and bolts of how the new machine or technology functions, what it costs and what advantages it offers farmers over what they have now. With the Gucci-clad gentry that made up the group of securities analysts crowding the room, the questions took a decidedly different tack.
Deere holds these get togethers for the financial crowd on a regular basis, and the simplified way Deere's product managers talked about the new products was much different than the way they would have presented them when only farm writers are in the crowd. In a way, it reminded me of the summers when distant cousins from the city would show up at the farm for a visit. Walking around the yard with them, you'd have to explain the function of everything from the tractor to a pitchfork.
I interviewed Martin Richenhagen, AGCO's CEO a few weeks ago in Jackson, Minnesota, and he commented that by and large members of the investment community seem to know little if anything about agriculture. After attending this event, I can see what he means.
The Q&A segment of Deere's gathering was dominated by questions from the financial people. And, not surprisingly, those questions focused on how the company planned to milk profits out of its products and services. One question asked by an analyst that would never have been spoken by a farm writer was this one: could Deere capture some of the data being transmitted by farmers through the use of its telematics products and sell it to other firms? Anything for a buck, I guess.
Deere executives were quick to distance themselves from any suggestion they would ever involve the venerable old firm in any of that.
One Deere executive said privately this was a routine gathering intended to help keep the company's share prices up and ensure investment interest remains high, something that historical accounts say the former Canadian manufacturer Cockshutt didn't do decades ago. As a result, equity firms moved in and plundered the company which had undervalued share prices. At least that is how one account of the company's demise described its downfall. Massey-Ferguson fell victim to a similar problem in the 1980s, nearly making that brand extinct.
The contrast between the analysts and the farm writers was pretty noticeable. I don't even recall seeing any members of the two groups talking to each other. We didn't have much in common, other than we were sitting in the same room. The event certainly highlighted how different the worlds are in which farm writers and securities analysts live.
If you're afflicted with the urge to restore old vehicles and machines—as I am—you've likely checked out more than a few rusty hulks hiding behind rows of trees or farmyards. When deciding whether or not its worth the trouble of dragging a machine home for a restoration, there are a couple of musts to consider.
First, the vehicle, whatever it is, must be pretty complete. Hunting down rare parts like chrome trim pieces can take a lot of time and money. Second, the engine must show some indication it's at least rebuildable, unless you're planning to build a hot rod or replace the existing powerplant with something completely different anyway.
The first thing I tend to do when looking under the hood of a potential project is grab the fan, give it a turn and see if I can get the crankshaft to rotate a little. If it does, there is a much better likelihood that the engine can be brought back to life. If it's badly seized, then it could just be nothing more than a lump of scrap iron.
A couple of years ago I had an International W-6 tractor in my shop with a seized engine. I tried the usual method of getting a stuck engine to turn, pulling the spark plugs and spraying liberal amounts of penetrating oil into the cylinders. Then after a few days, I put a breaker bar on the crankshaft pulley bolt and leaned into it. But the old W-6 wouldn't cooperate.
Finally, I took the head off to find two of the cylinders full of dirt and sand. Debris had blown in through the two open valves during the years it sat neglected. After scooping all the crap out, I soaked the cylinders for weeks with more penetrating fluid, but it was hopeless. The engine was unusable.
Any time I mentioned that stuck engine, it seemed everyone I spoke to had their own perfect recipe for a solution almost guaranteed to loosen things up. People recommended I use everything from straight diesel fuel to a mix of Coca-Cola and aviation gas!
This old six-cylinder engine in a 1948 GMC pickup is seized and sitting in my shop. I'll have to tackle the problem of freeing it up sooner or later.
There are also commercial fluids out there being marketed for just such a job. And this week a press release appeared in my email representing just such a product. The company claimed their fluid was the answer to most seized engine troubles. The message was from B.R.T. Tech Corp in Dorval, Quebec, and its product is called Engine Release. The press release says Engine Release has proven to get pistons loose in over 90 per cent of attempts. The list price is $19.95 plus shipping.
I called the owner, Serge Harrison, and asked him about Engine Release. He said he came up with the formula to solve problems his own machinery company was having with seized engines in equipment they purchased, most of which had been sitting unused for long periods before they bought it. Serge added his company was in the Marine equipment business, so stuck engines are something he ought to know about.
Engine Release is only available through the company's website www.enginerelease.com He says shipping costs will vary depending on your postal code, as Canada Post charges more for longer-distance shipments. It could add another $15 in some cases. But if it works as well as advertised, I'd pay $35 to bypass a stuck engine problem.
Do you have your own sure-fire method for freeing a stuck engine, or have you tried Engine Release? If so let me know what kind of results you've had.
By the way, Serge's website advises using an impact gun rather than a breaker bar on a stuck crankshaft. There's less chance of bending a connecting rod that way, and the vibrations it creates help break things loose.