MBMA Adds Seven New Associate Members

The Metal Building Manufacturers Association (MBMA) announced the addition of seven new Associate members.

The new members include Quality Roof Seamers (Olive Branch, Miss.), Birmingham Rail & Locomotive (Birmingham, Ala.), D.I. Roof Seamers (Corinth, Miss.), Global Building Products (Elkhart, Ind.), Metl-Span (Lewisville, Texas), Distribution International (Houston, Texas), and Konecranes (West Allis, Wis.).

The Associate Membership of MBMA has grown to 57 companies since the organization was founded in 1956. This membership class consists of material suppliers and service providers within the construction industry. MBMA’s Building Systems Manufacturer Membership now totals 43 companies, which puts combined membership levels at an all-time high of 100 member companies. Adding to this momentum, MBMA’s Board of Directors recently approved an expansion of the MBMA membership categories to include a class comprised of firms that provide architecture and engineering services.

“Associate members provide invaluable technical and business input which helps keep the industry ahead of the curve,” says Dan Walker, PE, associate general manager of MBMA. “Associate member firms are very active in helping MBMA achieve its mission to grow the industry for everyone involved with metal building design, fabrication and procurement. We are especially excited about the added architecture and engineering firm membership category because these professionals work directly with our members’ products. Their active participation and engagement will provide members with tangible benefits.”

Konecranes Offers Training Courses to Reduce Crane Accidents

Konecranes Training Institute aims to reduce crane accidents through education.

Konecranes Training Institute aims to reduce crane accidents through education.

Konecranes is an overhead crane manufacturer with a complete range of lifting equipment and industrial crane service professionals. Konecranes Training Institute in New Berlin, Wis. is a key element in the portfolio of equipment and expertise with which Konecranes supports its customers.

“Many crane accidents are caused by poor or improper rigging practices,” says Jim Lang, general manager of the Konecranes Training Institute. “One of the key items we learned from our Crane Accident study covering 10 years’ worth of overhead crane accidents was that 59 percent of the time when a load dropped this was because of a rigging issue. This very common deficiency is what we address in our Rigging Fundamentals course.”

Details revealed by the study are available in a short video produced by Konecranes Training Institute. It can be estimated that up to 70 percent of the overhead crane accidents may have been prevented by proper training.

According to Lang, the Rigging Fundamentals course from the Konecranes Training Institute teaches workers how to safely rig loads for different lifting conditions. For example, a 5,000-pound load rigged for a low headroom lift close to the ceiling could potentially require chains rated at 25,000 pounds or greater rather than 5,000 pounds depending on the angle between the hook and the load. Acute angles may multiply lifting stresses by more than five times the actual weight of the load.

Nucor Steel Gallatin in Ghent, Ky. has hosted the Rigging Fundamentals and Signalling courses more than 20 times, covering more than 300 employees over in 2014. According to Nucor Steel Gallatin’s Electrical Engineer Joe Rachford, the course has been invaluable since OSHA regulations changed to differentiate between operational and construction lifts.

“We could be picking up a motor, and if it is an in-kind motor, that is a maintenance lift and qualifies as operational. However, if it is an upgraded energy-efficient motor, it becomes a construction lift as it is new equipment,” says Rachford. “To cover ourselves, we now train everyone to the more stringent standards for construction lifts.”

Rachford says that while Konecranes training overlaps much of what Nucor had already established with their normal maintenance procedures, the Konecranes course is more technical and contains much more detail.

“We received very positive critiques coming back from the individual associates who completed the classes. I looked at every one and for the most part, all were very complimentary,” says Rachford.

Nucor Steel‘s Gallatin campus is now working with Jim Lang to put four individuals through Konecranes “train the trainer” course to ensure that there is a trainer available on-site when needed. Instructors must complete training every two years to remain certified, and the training materials are licensed from Konecranes.

“Since all of our new hires must complete the course before they can perform construction lift work, this program gives us the ability to go to our training room and immediately provide the same one-on-one instruction that Konecranes conducts on site,” says Rachford. “It is a great time-saver for us.”

Konecranes Training Institute lists all available courses and its regional seminars on the Konecranes training website.

Overhead Crane Can Be Tailored for a Variety of Lifting Applications

UNITON from Konecranes

UNITON from Konecranes

Konecranes latest advancement in its equipment offering for heavy-duty lifting and process industries, is a robust overhead crane that can be tailored for unique lifting applications.

Using a rugged construction concept with multiple trolley configurations and proven components, including Konecranes Core of Lifting (motor + gearbox + control system), UNITON delivers a crane that can be tailored to customers’ unique needs.

Standard features of the UNITON from Konecranes include fabricated box end trucks with 90-degree MCB-type bearing housings that are easy to replace and promote long life. UNITON’s robust design also benefits from Konecranes two-point drum suspension, which inhibits deflections of the rope drum from causing misalignment in the connection between the drum and gearbox.

UNITON cranes are available from Konecranes in a wide range of load options, hoisting speeds, lift heights, trolley gauges, frame sizes and capacities, from 6.3 to 160 tons with a single trolley and up to 320 tons with two trolleys. UNITON cranes can be built to meet CMAA duty requirements up to Class F.

The inverter controls for UNITON from Konecranes comes standard in all motions (bridge, trolley and hoist). Inverter drives provide a smoother lifting experience and reduce wear on mechanical components when compared to contactor-controlled cranes. As an optional feature, Extended Speed Range Plus (ESR+) allows for higher lifting and lowering speeds when loads less than the rated load are handled. When the load is less than 10 percent of the rated load, the hoist can be operated at up to 250 percent of the nominal speed, minimizing peak power and energy consumption for a more economical operation.

Optional load control features available on UNITON from Konecranes include Sway Control, Inching, Microspeed, Hoist Synchronization, and Tandem Drive, which links the actions of two cranes.

Konecranes designs and builds each UNITON crane for the ambient conditions of the customer’s operation, defined by the application and environment in which the crane will operate. So factors like temperature, humidity and corrosive elements are anticipated during manufacturing, which helps extend the lifetime of the crane.