The Perseverance to Help Out

A couple of years ago I got to spend some time with my dad rock climbing in the North Cascades in Washington. My eyes were set on a very easy 5.9 big wall multi-pitch route called Prime Rib of Goat on the Goat Wall in Mazama. The route that we climbed was 1300ft of vertical cliff and one of the most popular beginner routes for getting into large climbs. Both my dad and I are knowledgeable when comes to climbing and were looking for a nice relaxing day on the wall. This is how that relaxing day turned into a crazy rescue…

The trip started out as any normal climbing trip would, an early 6 am flight as we had to get all of our climbing gear through airport security. Once the plane landed, we picked up our rental car and the gorgeous 3.5 hr drive up I-5 along the bay and straight on through the North Cascade National Park. Mazama is a small town with a population of only 158 people located on the East side the Cascades. Once we reached our destination and set up camp, we decided to do a little warm up on the wall to try and beat the stiffness and fatigue from a full day of travel.

Pitch 7 of the Prime Rib of Goat on the Goat Wall

The next morning, we woke up a little on the late side (around 7:30 am) got a light breakfast and set out for our goal the Goat Wall. The wall was a short 3 miles outside of town with a not so easy 1-mile hike in 95°F temperatures up a Scree field (basically hill of loose rock at the base of a mountain). Once we reached the base, we loaded up our gear onto our harnesses and started climbing to the first set of anchors (this is what is known as a pitch in climbing terms). Pitches 1 – 6 were fairly straight forward and easy going, water was rationed to ensure that we wouldn’t get dehydrated but at the same time wouldn’t run out of water.

By around 4:00 pm we had reached the halfway point at the top of pitch 6; this is where we ran into two people who were also climbing the same route as us but moving at a much slower pace. Luckily the were two trees that were growing on the cliff so we decided to take a small lunch break in the shade. Around a half hour later I shouted up the cliff to see if the two people had moved on yet; when I heard nothing we started climbing pitch 7. To my surprise the group ahead of us were still sitting at the top of pitch 7.

Pitch 7 of the Prime Rib of Goat on the Goat Wall

Turns out that the group had a 40 pound pack with them which was unusual for the single day climb on an easy route that could be easily terminated if needed. After another 10 mins of waiting we decided help them haul this pack of theirs up the wall. It was slow moving up to Pitch 8 and they had run out of water and our water was running low. By the time we had finally reached pitch 9 with all the people things had started to get worse for the group that we were assisting; fatigue and dehydration had brought them to the point of a mental break down.

At this point my dad and I decided to share the last bit of water we had with them and to turn around and bail on the last 3 pitches. It was a slow process moving back down the way we had come and try to keep the group calm; the sun and heat was really starting to take a toll on our bodies. Our lips were cracked and blistered and our mouths had quit producing saliva but we kept trudging on. A relief from the heat came around the time when the sun had set around the top of pitch 4 and from that time onward, we were descending down the cliff face into what seemed like a black abyss.

Finally, we were able to set foot on the ground and low and behold the friends of the group we helped had hiked to the base looking for their friends and they brought water we could all drink. We didn’t get back to the campsite until 1:00 am. The next day my dad and I decided to pack up and head to the coast because we were done climbing.

Here at EXAIR we like to bring that same kind of enthusiasm and perseverance to help you solve your compressed air issues. We will walk you step by step in getting you either the right part or solving any of your technical issues and won’t leave you high and dry.

If you want to talk about any of the 16 different EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air® Product lines, feel free to contact EXAIR and myself or any of our Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.

Cody Biehle
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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Communication Is Key

Effective communication is a key interpersonal skill and learning how each of us can improve our communication is beneficial to all. Communication is a two way process, so improving communication involves both how we deliver and listen to the message. To best service our customers, EXAIR has many ways to share and receive information.

There are the standard methods, of course, that have been around for years.  Phone and fax are still very useful, and everyone has noticed that fax is slowly becoming less utilized. As dreaded as it may be, email is certainly a valuable way to communicate, especially as it allows ‘attachments’ such as photos, which as the saying goes, are definitely worth a thousand words. If video or 3D models are exchanged I am certain the number of words increases.

The newest technology for communication is via ‘chat’ which can be accessed from the EXAIR website. Here, you can chat with an Application Engineer and do something as simple as confirming a part number to something more involved like sizing a Cabinet Cooler System.

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Chat Live with an Engineer ‘Button’

The US Postal System is still a valuable communication tool, as we send out the EXAIR Catalog (currently volume No. 30) and the EXAIR-Mail (Number 109/Fall 2016 issue just went out), and some Purchase Orders still are dropped off by the Postman.

Another method of communication is face to face.  We have what we call the ‘Demo Room’ here at the factory in Cincinnati, OH.  In this room, we have every type of our Intelligent Compressed Air Products, in just about every size offered, ready for demonstration and testing to your application.  We’ve had visitors from all over the world come in and share face to face their applications and collaborate with us and test out the EXAIR solution.

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There is also the EXAIR website, where we provide a plethora of information regarding the EXAIR product lines, CAD and PDF librariesCase StudiesPresentations, and the Video Library just to name a few.  Also, here is where you can Request a Catalog, Sign up for E-News, and Check List Pricing.

Lastly, and since you are reading this you already are familiar with the EXAIR Blog – a great way for us to share with you our musings and thoughts, in a way that makes it a personal take on the EXAIR products and our interactions with our customers.

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Effective communication is very important to us and what we do here every day.  Feel free to utilize one or more of the Contact Us tools to communicate with us and we’ll be in touch!

Brian Bergmann
Application Engineer

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When Business is Easy You Save Time, Money & Eliminate Frustrations

Easy to do business with – It’s more than a saying we have around here; it’s something we practice at every opportunity, and every step. This may sound very “customer-service-ey,” and indeed it gets practiced in that arena a LOT, but it extends through every department in this company…from Sales & Marketing, to Order Entry & Accounting, to Engineering & Production, to Shipping & Receiving. Here’s a quick example of how it all came together just the other day:

A residential building products manufacturer has a machine located in a very dusty environment. The space is not climate controlled, and there’s a lot of hot work done there, so, even as fall temperatures cool off from the heat of summer, it still gets fairly hot, which causes the machine’s electronic controls to malfunction, and, eventually, trip off-line due to an overheat condition.

The engineer that was put in charge of solving this problem had just seen a magazine advertisement for our Cabinet Cooler Systems, and called to inquire. Within the hour, he had called me back with the data from the Cabinet Cooler Sizing Guide I sent him, and we determined that a Model 4315 NEMA 12 Cabinet Cooler System – 1,000 Btu/hr – w/Thermostat Control would fit the bill. He placed the order before we got off the phone.  Easy.

EXAIR Cabinet Cooler Systems - the easy solution to your overheating electronic controls.
EXAIR Cabinet Cooler Systems – the easy solution to your overheating electronic controls.

As a stock catalog product, this shipped the same day, thanks to the prompt attention paid to processing the order. Since they were extremely motivated to keep this machine running properly, it shipped for arrival the next morning.  Easy.

As soon as it got there, they opened the box and prepared to install it. Of course, these are designed for quick and easy installation, so they were up and running by mid-morning…less than 24 hours after the production supervisor asked his engineer for a way to keep his machine running.  Easy.

“Easy to do business with.” It’s more than a saying we have around here; it’s who we are at EXAIR. If you’re reading this blog, chances are you might already know this. Regardless, if you have a compressed air product or application that you’d like to discuss, give us a call.  Easy.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
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Expert Product Support Is Second Nature at EXAIR

The other day, my good friend at our German distributor contacted me with a need for some help on a Digital Flow Meter. His customer made a test rig to put the Digital Flow Meter in-line with their machines on a per-machine basis to check for flow rates and leaks. That’s a great way to use the Flow Meters. But this customer was making some bench tests and were not getting what they felt to be proper flow rate readings and their readings were not consistent between the Digital Flow Meter readout and the data pulled from the USB Data Logger.

Luckily, my colleague and his customer thought to send me some photos of their set-up as well as a data chart output from the Data Logger. These made the job of sleuthing out the problem that much easier. You see, the customer took the time to read the instructions to know about how long to make the test pipe and where to locate the meter along the length of that test pipe. So, they wanted to show me that they had 30 diameters of pipe up stream and 5 diameters of pipe down-stream per the instructions.

When I viewed their photo as you will see below, I saw everything seemed to be laid out well and assembled with good technique. But one thing stood out to me. If the 30 diameters of pipe were up-stream of the meter. That meant the airflow was coming to the meter from the right in the photo. And as you can see, the meter is sitting upright so they can see the numbers on the readout properly.

Gesamt
Digital Flow Meter on Test Pipe

There is only one problem. In that arrangement, the meter display would actually need to be upside down. The root of the problem is that the meter was installed for ease of reading in this test procedure. The customer neglected to note that there is only one direction in which the meter can be installed. There is an arrow on the side of the meter box that indicates the direction of flow.

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Digital Flow Meter Flow Direction Indicator

When you mount the meter counter to that arrow, the readings given by the meter become distorted due to how the meter works. One probe is heated to maintain a set temperature differential and if installed in reverse order, the meter overcompensates in its power applied which then messes up the reading output. The solution to this problem was to simply un-bolt the meter from the pipe and flip it over to have the right orientation. Unfortunately, this is what can happen when the instructions are not consulted in their entirety. But then again, who of us haven’t been guilty of that at some point!

The other problem the end customer was having was a mismatch of readings between their meter and the USB Data Logger. So I reviewed their output flow graph and noticed right away the problem. See the graph below:

Capture
Flow Data Chart

When setting up the USB Data Logger through the software, they neglected to set the 4 mA base line to equal zero flow. So, whatever value was stored in the software ended up making 4 mA set to about 3 m3/minute according to the graph above. The top end of the flow meter’s capacity also has to be entered into the software as the 20 mA value so that the milliamp output truly mimics what the flow meter is seeing.

After a quick discussion with my colleague, he then turned to his customer to have the same discussion with them and all was working fine by the end of the day. The customer could get on to the original task at hand which was to discover leaks and baseline his machines for airflow.

If you ever have any difficulty with an EXAIR product, we have a full staff of Application Engineers who can assist you with these kinds of problems with the equipment. It is truly our goal to make sure that everyone’s experience with our company is top notch.

Neal Raker, International Sales Manager
nealraker@exair.com
EXAIR_NR