Volumetric Mixer Manufacturers Association at World of Concr

Volumetric Mixer Manufacturers Association at World of Concr

Postby smnstn on Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:20 am

The above title is a typographical and verbal mouthful! Most of us simply refer to the VMMB these days. It also abbreviates things a little further to refer to the World of Concrete exposition and trade show as WOC.

This coming February, at the WOC, the VMMB will be holding its annual "Forum". Many of us will be in attendance and participating in this exchange of ideas concerning volumetric production of concrete. We would like to hear what your thoughts are. Please send topics for discussion at the VMMB Forum to MobileMIxHelp.com so we can collate and present them at this event. Don Mullin and I will be compiling a list to make your voices heard.

Simon Stanfield
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Re: Volumetric Mixer Manufacturers Association at World of Concr

Postby smnstn on Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:59 am

Topic Example: I will be hammering on my perpetual insistence that there must be an actual Volumetric Producers' Representative position established, whereby a knowledgeable individual who does not sit on the VMMB, and is not a current owner/operator/producer, collects information and dispenses same to those in this industry with questions, problems, and need of help. This person should have an established historical knowledge of all phases of volumetric production, be able to field test concrete and have the ability to travel for periods of time, preferably by automobile, to enable transportation of test equipment and related materials.

Of course this description perfectly describes myself, and I have wanted to do this sort of thing for a number of years. The roadblock in the past has been funding. My personal resources are limited, but I have developed a fair scale of compensation for field services as a consultant. Wouldn't this work better though, if I was not hired by the people I was going to call on on a routine basis, or the manufacturers of their equipment? This way I would not feel obligated to guide producers in a specific direction other than one that would help them in the best way possible. If I could represent only the producers themselves, I could establish a truly effective, live and vibrant association with making good concrete its only objective.

Thus, I throw my hard-hat into the ring as currently the only candidate to be your Senator at large, and hopefully we can figure out some way to fund the position.

Simon Stanfield
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Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 5:38 pm

Producer Support

Postby LeeMR on Thu Nov 26, 2009 3:27 pm

Hey Simon,

Got that book underway yet?? LOL

Being new in the business, I don't have much personal knowledge or experience with the VMMB, but based on what I've seen on manufacturer mergers over the last several years, it almost seems that it's not an organization that has a direct interest in us, the producers. I mean, where is the incentive? Relatively speaking, it's a narrow market. It's not like buying a car, where you literally have scores of manufacturers to choose from. On the outside, it appears to be a self-serving board.

We definitely need more direct representation. One of the issues that needs addressing, is our limitation on operation during cold weather. The common reply to this issue, as far as I have heard, is don't go out unless it's 35 degrees and rising!? Hey, that's fine, if you live in Virginia. But what about the northern part of the country?! Working under those limitations precludes us from continuing operation during the winter months.

Now, I'll agree that we're not probably going to gain that much business during the winter months, but my concern more than that, is having to tell my regular customers that I can't service their needs when it gets cold. That just undoes all the hard work I've done through the rest of the season, providing top service to my customers. I mean, a guy is trying pour in cold weather. He wants to get an early start, because he knows the set time is going be longer as it is, and then I have to tell him that I can't pour until 10 or 11 in the morning until the temp is above 35? Or how about this, not even being able to commit to a pour schedule, because I'm not sure if the temp will rise above 35? What's the guy supposed to do....sit around with two or three guys.....waiting to see if I'm even going to show up? That's not likely to happen!

And worse than that, I'm going have to sit back and watch my customers go back to the "round guys" to get serviced! I don't know about anyone else, but that doesn't set well with me. Now, we can put men on the moon, and send space ships to Mars, but we can't come up with a way to work year 'round with our mobiles? Maybe it'll come down to some good 'ole fashion Yankee ingenuity, but I don't see the manufacturers addressing this issue. I've only been in this for a little over a year, and I've already got some ideas. Come on, how would the manufacturers react, if they were told to just shut down for 3-4 months out of the year?

If anyone can enlighten me as to why this may be an impossibility, I'm all ears. But as the saying goes, the impossible just takes a little longer. It's like the hot water issue. I found a couple of companies that make truck mounted water heater units, but damn, you have to remortgage the house, kids, cat and dog to buy one.

As I've heard before, from Don Mullin, and several others, we need to find ways to keep our costs in check. Simon has the right idea. We need to get our concerns addressed at the VMMB. Well, that's my two cents. I'm sure I'm not the only one who has concerns, so I hope others out there will voice there concerns here. Then maybe we present these at the WOC in February.


Lee G.
Lee Gentile

888-MIX-RITE (649-7483)
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Norfolk, MA 02056
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Re: Volumetric Mixer Manufacturers Association at World of Concr

Postby harberconcrete on Thu Nov 26, 2009 7:35 pm

To the best of my knowledge the VMMB was established to come up with a set of criteria, established with the involvement of the NRMCA. The size of aggregate bins, cement bin, water tank, accuracy of cement, aggregate, admixture systems, etc. production speed, mix consistency... to insure that a 8 cubic yard mixer would indeed, without any modification be able to carry enough raw materials to produce 8 cu. yd. of concrete properly and consistantly. I believe that one of the main reasons for this was that most or all barrel mixers have a
certification plate which can be readily checked by job site inspectors. During my time working for a barrel company there were times that I witnessed a inspector doing just that. All mixers currently produced by VMMB companies have a certification plate.
The VMMB does have a website that carries some helpful info but their function is not as a mix design research/development organization just as the manufactures of barrel mixers do not develop mix designs.
Now that is not to say that the service and sales departments of the various manufacturers do not have a great deal if info, many do, and most or all will build a unit with the needed admix systems insulated tanks blow out systems, onboard water heaters, (they can expensive but so is putting a man on the moon)
The best resources for mix designs, weather problems have always been other producers (if you can get them to cooperate) admixture technical reps. and cement technical reps.
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Re: Volumetric Mixer Manufacturers Association at World of Concr

Postby Timberline on Fri Nov 27, 2009 11:51 am

I too fight the cold weather issue and have been implementing some new ideas this year to keep our operation up and running. We compete directly with a ready-mix outfit and it makes me sick to see my customers pouring out of barrels. We will see which ideas are working and which dont and may be able to get some of these options out to all of us who work in the northern areas for next year. Volumetric machines have a ways to go to be the ultimate concrete production method but I think if we keep trying our ideas and take advantage of the technology
available(thinking outside the box) we can push the limits of these mixers to do anything ready-mix outfits can. Cold temps are our biggest down fall right now. Lets fix that!

Happy Holidays!

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Re: Volumetric Mixer Manufacturers Association at World of Concr

Postby smnstn on Fri Nov 27, 2009 2:35 pm

Your cold weather concerns are duly noted. Just a word of caution at this moment in time. Please do not use Salamander-type, petroleum products fired heaters to blow warm air across your projects. They dehydrate the surface and the carbon monoxide combines with unhydrated cementitious particles to create a surface dusting problem that will never go away. Additionally, if the top part of a slab dries fast, and the bottom does not, it results in the notorious condition called "slab curling".

Ideally we should strive to use warm aggregates, hot water, and warm the ground prior to starting your pour. The guys delivering in the dinosaur eggs have to make the same considerations. Unfortunately, they do not quote the upcharges to their customers over the phone, only after they pour. They will also "round up" the amount of concrete theoretically poured to help cover costs. And don't forget the black curing blankets.

But how can the manufacturers help? Could they offer fitted bin liners backed with Styrofoam board? Could they have heat tape installed at critical points to simply plug in overnight? Could they offer continuous, instant hot water heaters for loading the water tanks with warm water? Are there 12VDC heating elements that could run off the truck alternator? After all, a diesel doesn't require electric power for combustion -- only to run controls and accessories.

Don and Chris -- are you listening?

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