Don’t BLINK or You’ll Miss It!

Over the weekend we had an incredible art installation take place and they call it BLINK! This event takes place in downtown Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, spanning more than 30 city blocks and crossing the historic John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge over the Ohio River. BLINK  turns the region into an outdoor art museum with large-scale projection mapping, murals, and immersive art. All of the entries have some kind of light element and center around light.

There are so many people involved in the opening night parade, including University of Cincinnati art students, local dance studios, art collectives, high school bands, and local companies. Each of them helped kick off the festivities with brightly lit costumes and accessories for all to enjoy.

This is the second year for this event and the first year we went downtown to see it, and man was it incredible! These artists must put months of work into the installations they create. I tried to get a few photos but i was so amazed I only took this one!

blink.jpg
Cincinnati BLINK

This is just one example of the amazing projections! To be honest there were so many installations it would probably take someone all four days to see them.

Not only do I give props to the artist who designed the installations, but kudos to the engineers who brought their ideas to life. We suspect there will be a BLINK 2020 but are waiting to hear the announcement. Many EXAIR folks went down to visit the event, we are happy (and proud) to support our local art communities by spreading the word and enjoying what they have brought to this event.

Photos of BLINK 2019 here.

I look forward to next year and I have a suspicion more cities may have similar things to this in the coming years!

Jordan Shouse
Application Engineer

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Remembering & Honoring This Day

Today I had the honor to participate in a local memorial event to recognize 9/11/2001.  This was the fifth year for the event in which participants climb 2,071 stairs within Nippert Statium at The University of Cincinnati.  This number symbolizes the stairs of the 110 floors each of the World Trade Center towers had.  The amount of time to complete the event is 56 minutes.  This was my first time attending the event and I must say, I was awestruck.

The calm before the majority of attendants showed up.

The number of people that attended the event was amazing.  The event started at 6:34 this morning, I arrived around 5:30 and met with a local group that were going to ruck the stairs rather than simply running / walking.   We each carried a pack, ruck sack, with us with a 30 lb weight plate.  The goal was to complete the 4 laps that the event required.

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As I was going through the repetitions up and down the stairs, they were making announcements of the events that transpired on that day in history, and the names of those that lost their lives scrolled across an electronic screen I began to recount where I was on that day.  I was actually on that exact campus just a few hundred yards away.   I walked right through that stadium on 9/11 to go to class.

The stairs began to wear on me quickly and I was only halfway through my first lap.  Then I saw a group of young ROTC students with Xavier University’s Air Force ROTC program.  That picked my hopes up for a bit  and I went on.  The harder it got for me the more details I remembered about that day. The more flights I did the more I thought about those that lost their lives, seeing the names I began to take a step for each one just to push on to the next.  At the end of the time I did not complete the 4 laps needed to commemorate the total number of stairs.  I did complete two full laps of stairs knowing that after that event was done I still get to go home and hug my family.

This day is always going to be a day of remembrance in my family.  Today, I was lucky enough to commemorate it among some amazing veterans, active duty, and future military and first responders.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_BF

Helping Within Our Community

Throughout my tenure here at EXAIR I have seen the company give to many different organizations and to the team members here.   Recently we implemented a program where employees are allowed to choose a charity of their choice to go and volunteer for a day each year.  This year for my volunteer day a group of seven members from EXAIR went to help a non-profit organization that focuses on helping students and teachers in 16 local counties.

The organization, Crayons to Computers is a free store for teachers in these counties that surround Cincinnati.  The store is stocked with donations from corporate and private entities and staffed by volunteers.  Their inventory can be anywhere from classroom supplies, books, decorations, technology equipment, even stocked book bags to give to students.  The store is the largest of its kind here in the United States and has been serving the Cincinnati area for 20 years. Their belief is that a teacher should not have to spend money out of their pocket to supply students in need with school supplies and to ensure that schools in need have access to supplies that aren’t always easily available.

They have a sales floor where the teachers shop and then a large warehouse where the donations are all sorted and stocked for easy pull to the sales floor when needed.  This is where our team spent the day.  We did jobs like sorting books by reading level, organizing / packaging chair mats, unloading trucks, and finally, consolidating over 30,000 boxes of 24 count crayons so that their valuable warehouse space was being used more efficiently.  These crayons were all donated by financial institutions here locally that had challenged each other to see who could donate more.  It still isn’t the amount of crayons that they will supply to teachers within this school year, but it helps tremendously.

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By volunteering our time we were also able to give 10 teachers who’s school would not normally qualify for shopping at Crayons To Computers the ability to go and shop for a day.  This was an added bonus that we were made aware of after the fact.  This is yet another way that Crayons to Computers gives to our community.

One of the best takeaways I have from this year is that I got to give back to an organization that my amazing wife would shop at when she was teaching students in need.  It was organized by someone here on our team that had no knowledge of my personal connection. We ended up getting more done than they had ever hoped to get out of 7 volunteers.  This was all made possible by a company that doesn’t just focus on making excellent products and providing top notch customer service.  EXAIR is also focusing on making sure our team members interests are embraced by letting them choose how to give their time and the companies time to a cause they believe will give back to our local community.

If you would like to inquire about donations or how you could help Crayons to Computers, please check out their site directly.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer Manager
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_BF
1-800-903-9247

 

Celebrating The Chip Trapper

NFL Football season is officially under way, and my hometown team, the Cincinnati Bengals, are off to a solid start. With less than a minute left in the game on Sunday afternoon, an interception stopped the New York Jets’ final drive, and Who-Dey Nation began to celebrate the win. Some (not me…not as far as you know) may have even celebrated in accordance with a hallowed Bengals tradition:

While I won’t celebrate just ANYTHING (although I do indeed hold prompt service at the deli counter in high regard,) you might get me excited enough to do the Ickey Shuffle if you start talking about how much you like your Chip Trapper.  Just like a caller did this morning.

Now, I’m unabashedly proud of all of our products, so I’m not going to come right out and SAY that I have a favorite any more than I would publicly proclaim one of my children as my favorite.  Although, in all fairness, they’re teenage boys, so at any given time, one of them is quite likely edging out the other on The List.

But back to the Chip Trapper – this morning’s caller just wanted to order some more Filter Bags, but in the midst of our conversation, he started “writing the commercial” for the product:

*It’s extended the life of their coolant – regular removal of solids and particulate contamination means the coolant stays clean & effective.

*It ensures the reliability of the machine – clean coolant doesn’t clog the lines, which WILL wreck the part you’re machining, and probably the tooling too.

*It eliminates odors – OK; nobody ever brags about a “spring fresh” aroma in a machine shop, but bacteria-laden, rancid coolant is the WORST.  Nobody needs to be working around that.  And since that bacteria needs solid surfaces to grow on, filtered coolant is fresh coolant.

*It’s EASY (part 1) – it’ll pump 55 gallons of dirty coolant into the drum in about 90 seconds.  Turn the valve and reverse the direction of the Reversible Drum Vac, and it’ll pump freshly filtered coolant back into the sump just as quickly.

*It’s EASY (part 2) – the Filter Bag holds over 5 gallons (almost 3/4 of a cubic foot) of chips, and the system comes with two of them so you can use one while cleaning out the other.

EXAIR's new Chip Trapper
EXAIR’s Chip Trapper comes in 30, 55, or 110 Gallon Sizes, depending on your needs.

If you’ve got a machine shop and DON’T have a Chip Trapper (yet,) call me; let’s talk.  If you DO have a Chip Trapper and you like it as much as my caller today did, DEFINITELY give me a call.  I might even do the Ickey Shuffle with you.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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Efficiency Lab Provides Specific Benefits

My Ruck sack w/ 20 lb. weight and a flag for the team to carry.
My Ruck sack w/ 20 lb. weight and a flag for the team to carry.

This weekend, myself and many others are going to be participating in an event held all over the country, the Go Ruck Light event.  This test of toughness (mental and physical) is put on by former military personnel and it is based around one of the things they do a lot of at the beginning of their military training.   This is a 7 to 10 mile event that will take up to 4 hours to complete.   It is not like a race or any other obstacle event that we have ever done.   This is an event where the leader, or Cadre, will lead you through the miles and many physical exercises along the way all while carrying a 20 lb weight in a ruck sack on your back.   This not only tests individuals but it also requires the entire group to work as a team to ensure everyone finishes and everyone is together.

While I feel that I am under-prepared for this event physically, my mind is prepared to find out just how much I really can do and it will be at the end of the test that I realize the benefits.

Not many of the tasks I am responsible for at EXAIR require that kind of physical toughness and some of them require the mental toughness. But one instance I am always prepared for is the customer that calls and thinks they have the weirdest application and that there is nothing to solve it.   We actually have this experience quite a bit and it helps make what we do more interesting and fun.  With our diverse background and extensive knowledge, chances are we have experienced the application or we have seen something that is very close.  This helps us to be specific when recommending a solution.

EXAIR feels that the best solutions can also provide information on air and dollar savings as well.  The best savings information can be provided if our customers are willing to provide us details about their current application, and there is no better way to provide us the details than to take advantage of our Efficiency Lab. It is a free service letting you to send in a sample of your current blowoff product (typically homemade nozzles, open tube or pipe, snap together coolant hose, etc.), in return we will test it for you with our calibrated equipment and provide you a detailed report on air volume, force and noise. Then you will know the specific benefits of your recommended solution.

EXAIR's Efficiency Lab is a free service to all US customers.
EXAIR’s Efficiency Lab is a free service to all US customers.

The fact is, we go into every conversation with the mentality of only providing solutions.  If we can’t provide it, we will try to direct you to someone that can.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer Manager
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_BF

 

Great Cars, Great Cause

This past weekend I had the joy of taking my father and my second daughter to a local car show here in Cincinnati. Because EXAIR is a sponsor of the show, we are fortunate enough to have tickets available to us if we would like to attend. This is not your run of the mill car show where there is a swap meet on one side and the general time frame of the cars is from 1955 – 1980. This is the Ault Park Concours d’Elegance. The cars that were there ranged from Pre-War era to modern Super Cars. Very few cars had not been immaculately restored to near new condition. This year the weather was perfectly sunny and around 90°F. (Honestly, it was down right humid and hot as can be.)

1960 Ford Thunderbird Nascar
1960 Ford Thunderbird Nascar
Driver's Side - Now that is what I call a roll cage!
Driver’s Side – Now that is what I call a roll cage!
No normal plates here.
No normal plates here.

One of my favorites was this 1960 Ford Thunderbird NASCAR. The car was the only NASCAR-spec 1960 that actually never ran in competition, at least legal competition. Also, was one of very few cars produced with manual transmission, steering and brakes. Most drivers nowadays wouldn’t even know what to do with a car that doesn’t have an automatic transmission. Let alone power steering and brakes.

Look at that motor!
Look at that motor!
Have to believe this is true.  I would say this was the exception to never being entered in "competition".
Have to believe this is true. I would say this was the exception to never being entered in “competition”.
It always feels great to work for a company that gives!
It always feels great to work for a company that gives!

One of the best parts of going to this show is seeing the EXAIR logo next to a very deserving charity. The show is in it’s 38th year and continues to benefit the Juvenile Arthritis Foundation. Yet another aspect of the show is that a good majority of the cars will do a parade the week before the show and take children from the foundation with them in their cars. While this doesn’t help their physical condition, I can’t help but think what kid wouldn’t be happy getting to ride in a car like a Ferrari or even one that you have to crank by hand in order to start it.

Take a look at the website for the show and you will see the history behind the show as well as some of the other vehicles you may see there. As always, I truly love the fact that I work for a company that not only values the employees it hires but also gives to so many charities as well.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer Manager
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_BF

Longshore Racing Debuts at the Baja 1000

Ryan Longshore, a design engineer at EXAIR, famous for his hard work on our new High Lift Reversible Drum Vac, will now be famous for something else. He left Cincinnati, OH last Thursday November 6th, 2014 to run the Baja 1000. He is running the race with a few members of his family and friends as a part of Longshore Racing. His trip to the race is 2,168 miles. After driving to Ensenada for the start of the race, They will compete in 1,275 miles of racing, unlimited UTV class 19.

Longshore Racing
For any one unfamiliar with UTV class 19, here is a photo of the vehicle they will be using.

The Baja 1000 is one of the most grueling off road races in the world.  According to Scores International, the race this year will be 1,275 miles starting in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico finishing in La Paz, Baja California Sur. The course crisscrosses the Baja California Peninsula drive along the cost of the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of California at various times.

The temperature in La Paz now is 87 degrees and sunny, so I hope he gets a chance to enjoy himself.

If they complete the race (a huge accomplishment), the convoy will then depart from La Paz to drive back to Louisville, KY.  For those of you scoring at home that is roughly 6,500 miles or around 80 hours of windshield time.

As I’m writing the blog the number 1943 is 398 miles into the race after running for 18 hours.  They only have 40 hours to compete in the Baja, so they have an uphill climb to finish in the allotted time, but they seem to be putting on a good showing so far.

Best of luck to # 1943! EXAIR is Cheering for You!

Monday Morning Update: The Longshore Racing team made it to mile 625 where they suffered an insurmountable breakdown – two broken front right ball joints. The repair vehicle was a couple hours away and they were unable to make the repairs in time to finish the race. Ryan has stated it has been an amazing journey and they have begun talking about next year.

Dave Woerner
Application Engineer
@Dave_Woerner
DaveWoerner@EXAIR.com

 

Photo Courtesy of Longshore_Racing