Page 1

NOMMA celebrates 50 years of history and achievement, pg. 34

Ornamental and Miscellaneous Metal The official publication of the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association

July/August 2007 $6.00 US

Job Profile

These gates open to the Road to Paradise Shop Talk

Member Talk

Should you say no to a risky job?, pg. 20

From Indy cars to iron beds, pg. 28

page 42

Biz Side

Maximize your tax dollars now, pg. 62

Ultrasonic tanks are affordable, save time and money, pg. 12

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Our Quality . . .

• Wagner has implemented a Business Process Excellence project to become ISO-9001 compliant in 2007.


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July/August 2007 Vol. 48, No. 4

A NOMMA member’s work is featured on ABC-TV’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. See page 62.

Biz Side

Special Feature

Tips & Tactics Ultrasonic cleaning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 The ultrasonic tank, now affordable even for small shops, is a great laborand time-saving method for cleaning. By Ed Sullivan

Calculating corrosion protection costs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 A web-based life-cycle cost calculator makes it easy. By Philip H. Rahrig

Shop Talk “Risky” jobs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Things to consider when a customer asks you to build something that’s not code-compliant.

By Lee Rodrigue

Member Talk from Indy cars to iron beds . . . 28 New NOMMA member Kane Williams talks about how he went from working on race cars to being a fabricator.

President’s Letter . . .6 Life is short. What are your priorities?

NOMMA: Carrying on an ancient tradition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 The first in a series of articles highlighting our association’s history and achievements over the past 50 years.

Maximizing your tax dollars . . 62 There are steps you can take right now toward improving your next tax return. By William J. Lynott

A powerful sales plan . . . . . . . . . . 66 Organizing your sales goals and strategies is a big key to success. By Dave Kahle

Job Profiles Difficult road to paradise ......42 Klahm & Sons’ award-winning entry gates are the result of extraordinary attention to details. By Sheila Phinazee

A unique casting process........50 Derek Minotti’s variation on the lost foam casting technique pays big dividends in efficiencies. Giving back ............................................62 Bob’s Ornamental Iron pitches in on a charitable project featured on national television.

Editor’s Letter . . . . . . 8 You’re never too old to learn new things.

The basics of patents . . . . . . . . . . . 70 Got a great idea? Protect it with a patent. By Brian R. Rayve, Esq.

What’s Hot! New Members . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76 Nationwide Suppliers . . . . . . . . . . . 77 Biz Briefs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78 Chapter News . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80 Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83 People . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85 Literature . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87 New Products . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 88 Classifieds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90

Reader’s Letters . . . 10 High school program focuses on ornamental metal.

Biz Perspectives . . . 94 Why diversifying your accounts is a good thing.

Cover photo: Entry gates for Via Paradisus, an upscale Florida residential community, feature a combination of cast panels and hand work that garnered a Silver Award in this year’s Top Job contest. July/August 2007 



President’ s Letter What’s important to you? Dedicated to the success of our members and industry. NOMMA OFFICERS President Breck Nelson Kelley Ornamental Iron LLC Peoria, IL President-elect Terry Barrett Royal Iron Creations West Palm Beach, FL

Vice President/ Treasurer Bob Foust, III Bob’s Ornamental Iron Studio Kansas City, KS Immediate Past President Chris Connelly DeAngelis Iron Work Inc. South Easton, MA

FABRICATOR DIRECTORS Fred Michael Colonial Iron Works Inc. Petersburg, VA

Frank Finelli Finelli Ornamental Iron Co. Solon, OH

Don Walsh Pro-Fusion Ornamental Iron Inc. San Carlos, CA

Douglas Bracken Wiemann Ironworks Tulsa, OK

Bruce Boyler Boyler’s Ornamental Iron Inc. Bettendorf, IA

Curt Witter Big D Metalworks Dallas, TX

SUPPLIER DIRECTORS David T. Donnell Eagle Bending Machines Inc. Stapleton, AL

Wayne Haas Cleveland Steel Tool Co. Cleveland, OH

Gene Garrett Regency Railings Inc. Dallas, TX

NOMMA STAFF Executive Director Barbara H. Cook Meetings & Exposition Manager Martha Pennington

Administrative Assistant Liz Johnson Editor Helen K. Kelley

Communications Mgr. J. Todd Daniel

2007 ADVISORY COUNCIL Doug Bracken Wiemann Ironworks

Rob Rolves Foreman Fabricators Inc.

Nancy Hayden Tesko Enterprises

Rob Webster Web Metal Fabricators, Ltd.

Tom McDonough Master Metal Services Inc.


Curt Witter Big D Metalworks

As I sit down to write this letter, I find that the heat of summer is upon us. Here in the Midwest, this means peak construction season. Building deadlines, customer demands, production timelines, designs, estimates, employee concerns, and accounts payable and receivable are just a few of the daily items demanding our attention. Then, throw in family schedules and responsibilities and you get a stressed out, tired, and sometimes frustrated business owner, manager, employee, dad, mom or spouse. At times like these, it’s easy to lose sight of just what is important and what should take priority. Recently, after a particularly trying week I found myself in this condition, asking if it was really worth all this effort. And then, I heard this quote from the classic comedienne, Jackie “Moms” Mabley:

“If you always do what you’ve always done, then you’ll always get what you’ve always got. But, if you want to have what you’ve never had, then you got to do what you’ve never done.” I thought about this quote for a while and realized just how much sense it made — and what I needed to do. I sat down and made a list of all the things I really wanted out of life: to be a good husband, a good father, serve as a volunteer at church and with organizations I believed in, and to have a successful vibrant company. I also realized that if I was going to see any of this come true, I wouldn’t be able to do it in the condition I was in. So, I have committed to doing some things I have never done. Like getting up an hour earlier to have some quiet time and plan my day, delegate some responsibilities at work to qualified employees, leave work at a decent time to eat dinner with my family or to be at one of my children’s

sporting events. These are only some of the first steps. In considering some of the areas I need to improve in at work, I realized what a great resource we have in NOMMA. Through the NOMMA Education Foundation, we members have available to us an abundant supply of books and videos ranging from basic business and metal forging to field measuring and fabrication techniques, just to name a few. Any NOMMA member can post a Breck Nelson is question on the president of ListServ and receive practical, the National Ornamental and timely answers Miscellaneous and suggestions Metals Association. from other members, which can save precious time and money. At METALfab, there are classes taught by fellow members who openly share their experiences and wisdom to anyone willing to attend. I believe, without a doubt, that any investment in these resources will pay a continuing dividend greater than one can count. It’s easy to get caught up in today’s fast-paced, stressed out business world. And if you ever find yourself in my position, maybe it would do you good to think about that quote from “Moms.” I would suggest you sit down and make a list of what’s truly important to you and prioritize that list, then plan out what you’re going to do about it. If you have any questions, I would be happy to talk with you. Just don’t call me after 5:00 — I’ll be home eating dinner with my family.


July/August 2007

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How to reach us

Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metal Fabricator (ISSN 0191-5940), is the official publication of the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association (NOMMA). O&MM Fabricator / NOMMA 1535 Pennsylvania Ave. McDonough, GA 30253


Send story ideas, letters, press releases, and product news to: Fabricator at address above. Ph: (888) 516-8585. Fax: (770) 2882006. E-mail:


For information, call Todd Daniel, Ph: (888) 516-8585, ext. 102. Ads are due on the first Friday of the month preceding the cover date. Send ads on CD to: Fabricator at address above. E-mail ads to: (max. 5 megs by email). Or upload ads to our website where a downloadable media kit is available:


In addition to the magazine, enjoy more benefits as a NOMMA member. To join, call (888) 516-8585, ext. 101. For a list of benefits, see membership ad in this issue.


1-35 words: $50 member, $65 nonmember; 36-50 words: $75 member, $90 nonmember; 51-70 words: $100 member, $115 nonmember; 71-100 words, $130 member, $145 nonmember. Send items to: Fabricator, at address above, or E-mail: Ads may be faxed with credit card information to: (770) 2882006. Deadline: 2nd Friday of the month prior to publication.


Subscription questions? Call (888) 516-8585. Send subscription address changes to: Fabricator Subscriptions,1535 Pennsylvania Ave., McDonough, GA 30253. Fax: (770) 288-2006, or E-mail: 1-year: 2-year: 1-year: 2-year:

U.S., Canada, Mexico — $30; U.S., Canada, Mexico — $50; all other countries — $44; all other countries — $78.

Payment in U.S. dollars by check drawn on U.S. bank or money order. For NOMMA members, a year's subscription is a part of membership dues.

Buyer’s Guide Published each issue. Deadline is Sept. 30. For (888) 516-8585


December as a separate for all advertising materials info, contact Todd Daniel at or

For a quote, contact NOMMA at (770) 2882004 or

Opinions expressed in Fabricator are not necessarily those of the editors or NOMMA. Articles appearing in Fabricator may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the express permission of NOMMA. Circulation: 10,000.


Editor’ s Letter What have you learned? I was stymied this time. What should the message of this column be, what would be a relevant topic for the July/August issue of Fabricator? I began turning over ideas in my mind, discarding most of them quickly. I was already in the throes of editing articles and laying out pages when I read Breck Nelson’s President’s Letter (p. 6) and Doug Bracken’s sound business advice (p. 94). Their messages were reminders of basic truths about life: figure out what’s important to you, learn from the shared experiences of others and your own mistakes, and put it all into daily practice. I thought about what some of my own life lessons are, gathered from the combined wisdom of relatives, friends and personal experience. Here are a few: 

If you have a good book to read, you’ll always have a friend.

Don’t take the first one; it could be a dud. (This usually applies to purchasing the first generation of anything, which is why I opted to wait on the new iPhone and let others work out all the bugs—and hefty price tag—first.)

If there is “some assembly required,” expect it to take longer than you ever imagined and that there will be some mysterious extra parts left over.

Don’t be stingy with your love, time or talents. Between the covers of this issue, you’ll find evidence of how several NOMMA members have incorporated their own life lessons and philosophies into their work. Jack Klahm, whose award-winning gate project appears on our cover, learned that being a keen observer and absorbing details pays off when it comes to creativity. Partnering with Jack on the project was Derek Minotti of CLS Enterprises, who figured out a way to “build a better mousetrap” with his own unique lost foam casting process, gleaned from on-the-job experience. The story begins on p. 42.

Also in this issue, Bob Foust tells about the pressure of working in prime time television — his company fabricated and installed all of the custom railings for a home featured on an episode of ABC-TV’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. It wasn’t all spotlights and glamour! See p. 62 for the story. Have you ever faced the dilemma of whether or not to turn away a profitable job when you know it may come with liability? In Shop Talk, Lee Rodrigue discusses weighing the potential risks and knowing when to walk away. See p. 20. One of NOMMA’s newest members, Kane Williams, is a self-taught fabricator. Find out how he “got Helen Kelley is editor of Ornamental & there” in our Miscellaneous Metal Member Fabricator. Spotlight, p. 28. As promised, we begin our series of articles highlighting NOMMA’s history and achievements, leading up to our 50th anniversary celebration in Memphis at METALfab 2008. The first of these articles chronicles the association’s founding and some key decisions and events of the past (see p. 34). What are some of your own life lessons? Were they easily learned or did they come from the school of hard knocks? However you came by them, I hope you’ll be generous and share with others. Have a great summer! Our apologies! In the May/June 2007 Fabricator, Architectural Iron Designs Inc. was mistakenly left off our list of METALfab 2007 Exhibitors on p. 42. Also, the phone number for Migala Metals Designs, p. 62, was incorrect. The correct number is (815) 943-5909. Fabricator 

July/August 2007


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Readers’ Letters We have a floor manager and 6-10 floor employees building custom fireplace doors, lighting, and railing, and hope to double our size in the next few years. Do you have some shops similar to ours that I could network with that may have already solved the problems we’re experiencing, or could you diWe need to hear from you. Please send us your rect me someplace else that article suggestions, editorial corrections, tips would be helpful? Thanks in adyou’d like to share with other readers, and vance. comments on new products and services. Your ~ Tim Campbell input makes our industry, association, and Ironhaus publications stronger. Hamilton, MT

Input requested on production management issues We are a fast growing metal fab shop looking for practical solutions for scheduling and managing workflow, efficiency, and quality control.

Tell us what you think

Mail: Letters to the Editor, c/o Fabricator, 1535 Pennsylvania Ave., McDonough, GA 30253. E-mail: Fax: (770) 288-2006; Ph: (888) 516-8585. Please include your name, company, address, telephone number, and e-mail. Letters are subject to editing for clarity, grammar, and length.


One of NOMMA’s best benefits is our email discussion list (called ListServ), which is available to all members. This forum is a great place to get your questions answered. Another excellent resource is the annual

METALfab convention. In addition to helpful business education classes, there are many opportunities to network with your peers from around the world. If anyone wishes to contact Tim directly, he can be reached at (406) 961-1800, ext. 102 or by email: Instructor/blacksmith provides ornamental training I am a welding and metal fabrication teacher. I receive your magazine and enjoy reading it from cover to cover. I use your articles as reading and research assignments in both homework and classroom lessons on hand railings and other trade related techniques. I also teach ornamental iron work, which includes blacksmithing to my students. Would you be inter-

Fabricator  July/August 2007

ested in publishing an article on our young adults learning about ironwork? I have enclosed an outline of our metal fabrication program. When not teaching my students welding and metalwork I am a parttime blacksmith that forges railings, gates, trellises, and other custom metalwork. ~Neil Mansfield Assabet Valley Vocational High School Marlborough, MA

We love to support schools and will definitely consider your material for a future issue. Thanks for sharing! Inspector requires proof that ‘ladder effect’ is removed I have a customer that wants to put a cable rail in a home. The local building inspector wants to know

where in the 2006 code that the ladder effect is addressed or if there are references somewhere in that code that allows the horizontal railing. If there is such a reference, can you provide it to me? ~ John Gossard Austin Ornamental Inc. Taylor, TX

It’s more a matter of what the model code does NOT say. The “ladder effect” was removed from the International Residential Code in 2001. All subsequent versions have NOT contained this clause. You can reference R312 in either the 2003 or 2006 IRC as proof that there is no “ladder effect” rule.

NOMMA Technical Affairs Update As reported in the last issue, NOMMA has contracted with the NAHB Research Center of Upper Marlboro, MD to conduct an independent study on guard safety in relation to young children. On June 20, the NOMMA Code Advisory Council and NAHB Research Center presented an update on the project to the ICC Code Technology Committee (CTC) during their meeting in Cincinnati, OH. On October 4–5 the NAHB Research Center is making a formal presentation on their findings to the CTC during their meeting in Reno, NV. All CTC meetings are public, and the NOMMA technical team invites all members in the area to join them for this historic occasion. If you can attend the Reno CTC meeting, please contact Todd Daniel at the NOMMA office (888-516-8585, ext. 102;

0HPEHU July/August 2007  Fabricator


Ultrasonic cleaning

Tips & Tactics

This cleaning method makes metals look as good as new... without toxic chemicals or tedius labor. Set it and forget it — an ultrasonic bath delivers clean, while saving time and money.

By Ed Sullivan Several years ago, when I was writing technical literature for an aftermarket engine parts company, I first saw ultrasonic cleaning used in the rebuilding of intricate fuel injector components. It was a sophisticated, high-volume operation that did such a thorough and efficient job that many OEM suppliers purchased many of these restored precision products for their own rebuilt injector assemblies. Not only did these parts look like new, they performed just as well, and even carried a liberal warranty. Equally remarkable, the ultrasonic bathing system eliminated the need for time-consuming and tedious hand cleaning of complex components using caustic chemicals that exposed workers to toxins and often required hazardous waste treatment. At the time, smaller remanufacturing and service shops simply could not 12

Many metalworking businesses, large and small, are discovering a great labor, time, and toxic-solvent saving device: the ultrasonic tank.

afford the luxury of owning a suitable ultrasonic cleaning system, which required high volume throughput in order to be cost effective. As a result, smaller businesses remained mired in problems that should have been history. Today, the cost of owning an ultrasonic cleaning system is not only affordable, but the preferred choice. Ultrasonic cleaners are devices that use ultrasound to cleanse or sanitize items that are sometimes intricate or even delicate, such as jewelry or surgical instruments. However, the technology is also highly effective in cleaning components used in a variety of industrial applications. The objects to be cleaned are placed in a chamber or tank containing a water-based cleaning soap specific for the application. Ultrasound, generated by an energyconverting transducer, is electronically activated to produce ultrasonic waves in the fluid. The main mechanism of

the cleaning action is energy released from the creation and collapse of microscopic cavitation bubbles, which

For your information Ultrasonic cleaners, sometimes mistakenly called supersonic cleaners, are cleaning devices that use ultrasound (usually from 15-400 kHz) to clean delicate items. Some suitable materials for ultrasonic cleaning include:  Stainless Steel  Mild Steel

 Aluminium  Copper  Brass

 Other alloys  Wood

 Plastics and Rubber  Cloth

Source: Wikipedia


July/August 2007

break up and lift off dirt and contaminants from the surfaces to be cleaned. An example from the auto parts industry Cleaning auto parts by hand with caustic solvents is often tedious and usually wearisome. Moreover, some parts, such as carburetors, contain irregular surfaces and internal passages that are virtually impossible to clean thoroughly – which can adversely affect performance. Chuck Aughinbaugh, proprietor of Ephrata Cycle and Sports Inc. (Ephrata, PA) has been in the business for more than 30 years, selling and fixing racing bikes, cruisers, and ATVs. A lot of this time was spent tearing down carburetors and other components for cleaning. Big cruisers like GoldWings have four-stack carburetors that burn “green” when coated with residue of today’s fuels. To perform well, the four stacks need to be stripped clean. Hours of hand labor and gallons of toxic solvents used to be the only way to get those cruisers back on the highway. While attending a trade show, Aughinbaugh discovered that the ultrasonic method promised to free his shop of most of the drudgery of cleaning critical components, not only automatically, but also more thoroughly. He ended up purchasing an ultrasonic system made by a Californiabased manufacturer, Omegasonics. He says that the ultraonic method has virtually eliminated the tough job of cleaning parts with surfaces that are difficult to get at. “When I’m cleaning a four-stack, I leave them on the plate,” he explains. “The only things I don’t put into the ultrasonic bath are floats and the occasional vacuum diaphragm.” Adios toxic solvents Eric Peterson, owner of Specialty Marine in Oxnard, CA, had similar problems in servicing marine engines with carburetors that became gummed from sitting idle. During the off-season fuel, sometimes mixed with water, thickens into a varnish that clogs carburetor jets and passages. Approximately 40 percent of the engines Specialty Marine services required tedious scouring of dirty carbs. At first, Peterson and his staff used aerosol solvents to clean carburetors, spraying them into passages and then blasting them with compressed air to push out the residue. The process was conducted over open trash barrels to catch the dirty, oily mist discharged from the carburetors. “I didn’t need 14 years in air quality management to know that aerosol solvents were an environmental mess,” says Peterson, a former air quality engineer. Not only did those solvents affect breathing and skin, they also represented an eye hazard if the spray shot backward due to any carburetor misalignments when injecting the solvent. Eric found a better way to clean carburetors and other engine parts when he was introduced to ultrasonic cleaning at a dealer trade show. “I knew it was the answer right there,” he said. July/August 2007 


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For his cleaning solution, Eric chose a product that removes oil, grease, carbon, and other contaminants from a variety of metals. The cleaner’s buffers protect aluminum finishes and its silicates guard against flash rusting. Turning a problem into a profit center With all due regard for worker safety and thorough cleaning of parts, is

the ultrasonic cleaning system worth it financially? Time is money, and Eric Peterson immediately found multiple timesaving benefits to using his ultrasonic cleaning system. “When you’re cleaning a carburetor manually, there’s always the chance you’ll miss something,” he said. “Our machine doesn’t miss a thing.” Moreover, doing a better job now takes less time. “We can put a number of dirty carburetors into the ultrasonic

cleaner at the same time. That way we can complete repairs for most customers in less time,” Peterson explains. He estimates a 50 percent reduction in cleaning time when he has several carburetors to clean during one shift. Today, Ephrata Cycle and Sports charges a $25 flat fee for cleaning a carburetor. “It has become a profit center,” says Aughinbaugh, adding that the new ultrasonic cleaning system has “ . . . paid us back substantially . . . we can do plenty of carburetors without tying up manpower, and the results are excellent.” And, customers save money as well, versus the previous hourly rate to tear down a carburetor and clean it by hand. Increased customer satisfaction Aughinbaugh finds that ultrasonic cleaning enhances the value of his service. “When we do an engine teardown on a racing bike, we always clean the engine case in our Omegasonics tank. When the customer gets the bike back with that shiny cover, he or she feels that much better about the money they’ve spent with us. It makes a difference that our customers can actually see.” Paterson agrees: “Now. when a customer pays for a carburetor cleaning, he gets back a unit that looks brand new. Customers are impressed with the finished product and know they got their money’s worth. That ensures repeat business.” Ultrasonic parts washing has become the next evolutionary step in industrial manufacturing, greatly reducing time and labor, performing a better job of cleaning, and improving not only the vital bottom line, but also providing the all-important result of customer satisfaction. For more information on the Omegasonics products mentioned in this article, call (805) 583-0875 or log on to Ed Sullivan is a technology writer based in Hermosa Beach, CA.



July/August 2007

Tips & Tactics

Calculating costs

It’s important to know your corrosion protection costs... all of them. A web-based automated life cycle cost calculator can help you compare various coating systems to make the right choice for your job.

By Philip G. Rahrig American Galvanizers Association Hot-dip galvanize or paint the fence?

Paint or hot-dip galvanize the fabricated structural steel entranceway? Galvanize and then paint the steel sculpture? No matter how you ask the question there are certain variables that must be analyzed in order to arrive at the answer, not the least of which is cost. While initial cost is often the decisive factor when selecting a corrosion protection system for a steel ornamental fence/gate, structural awning, or artwork project, there are often other costs that dwarf this initial funding outlay. Those costs are associated with a series of scheduled maintenance costs necessary to protect the project from corrosion over the planned service life. For maximum protection of the asset, plans should be based on an ideal maintenance cycle. For paint systems an ideal cycle calls for touchup, maintenance painting, and full repainting prior to visual evidence of substrate steel corrosion. However, on most projects a practical, less rigorous cycle is used and this means maintenance is conducted when the coating has deteriorated to the point where the fence or art object looks to be in disrepair and iron oxide (rust) is visiJuly/August 2007 


bly evident. For a hot-dip galvanized corrosion protection system, maintenance is normally many decades after the initial coating is applied and usually only requires minimal surface preparation and the application of a zinc-rich spray coating. To determine the timing of practical maintenance, most paint coating systems have been tested in a laboratory using accelerated corrosion mechanisms. To be sure, if the testing indicates a touchup painting should be performed in year eight, a maintenance paint applied in year 13, and a full repaint in year 18, the actual project may require maintenance according to the wear and tear on the project and the toll corrosive environmental elements have taken. That may mean earlier than planned maintenance based on the accelerated testing. More importantly, there may be a very unhappy owner whose expectations are much higher than the performance that a painted project can deliver. Automated life-cycle cost calculation Comparing one corrosion protection system to another can be an arduous number crunching exercise further complicated by the various performance characteristics each coating system provides. A three-coat inor-

ganic zinc-epoxy-polyurethane system may have initial durability, while hotdip galvanizing provides corrosion protection inside hollow structural sections, and alkyds may be the standard of past projects. But, once the field is narrowed to a couple of optimal coating systems according to desired performance, it is important to use all the financial tools and models available to quantify future costs as

For your information A life-cycle cost analysis (LCC) gives the present value of the total cost of your investment. To determine that value, the calculations take into account factors such as:  Initial capital investment, including installation costs  Estimated maintenance costs per year  Years of usefulness  Salvage value

There is a lot of helpful information to be found online regarding calculating the life-cycle cost of any type of system, device, building, or other capital equipment or facility over its anticipated useful life. A good web-based automated life-cycle calculator for coating systems can be found by logging on to:


accurately as possible, especially with maintenance budgets shrinking and substantial long-term costs. One such tool is the Life-Cycle Cost (LCC) Calculator, available at As the URL implies, this site will compare the initial and life cycle costs for more than 30 (one, two, or three coat) paint systems to hot-dip galvanizing. A unique feature of the software is it allows the user to customize the input to fit his/her particular project exactly. Input variables include total size in tons or square feet, surface preparation type, structural steel component size (small, medium, large), and planned service life of the project. The calculator allows the user to input in either metric or English units. The primary driver and input variable of the life cycle cost calculation is the corrosion data for the project’s environmental location. If an intricate fence is in a rural area, corrosion rates are low because of lower corrosive elements in the air. For a structural fabrication in an industrial area, aggressive corrosion may be initiated by sulfide and chloride emissions from production plants including high levels of automobile/truck exhaust. There are four input options for the environment and all correspond to categories described in ISO 12944-2 “Classification of Environments.” The financial component of the LCC Calculator is also customizable and based on standard net future value (NFV) and net present value (NPV) calculations where the time value of money is considered. The user selects what rate of

inflation is projected over the life of the project in order to determine the value of money at each maintenance time, and the average interest rate future expenditures on maintenance could earn, i.e. lost opportunity cost. Both are used to calculate the more easily understood and meaningful average annual equivalent cost (AEAC) for each coating system being modeled for any specific project.  NFV = initial cost [(1+i)n}, where i = inflation; n = project life in years  NPV = NFV[1/(1+i)n], where i = interest rate; n = project life in years  AEAC = NPV[i(1+i)n/(1+i)n – 1], where i = interest rate; n = project life in years The information on cost of each paint system and its practical service sequence in years for each of the ISO environments is contained in a database.1 Based on the user’s selection of a particular coating system, the software accesses the appropriate field and incorporates the data into the life-cycle calculation. There are two options for the cost information of hot-dip galvanizing, also resident in a database. The user may either select the default, which is a U.S. average cost, or input any number in $/lb. or $/kg., based on market information in his/her locale.

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Output of the LCC Calculator includes a printable summary of all selected input as well as tables containing the initial, NPV, total project, and AEAC for the coating system and hot dip galvanizing. The LCC calculator output is available in US dollars or in any country’s currency. The currency conversion is real time, making the LCC Calculator useful for export/import projects. Project Example Here’s an example of calculating and comparing costs of two different coating methods for an ornamental gate project. Using a typical three-coat paint system of inorganic zinc/epoxy/polyurethane, the life cycle cost calculator yields an initial cost for the paint system of $3.07/ft2. Galvanizing would initially cost only $1.60/ft2 and would seem to be a logical choice to protect the gate from corrosion. Looking far into the future of this gate, planned to last 55 years, the paint system would require touchup painting in year 21, maintenance painting in year 28, and a full repaint in year 39. When these costs are annualized in present dollars, the cost per year to have an attractive gate is $0.47/ft2/year or over the lifetime a total of $75,738. For the same gate protected by hot-dip galvanizing, the costs are $0.10/ft2/year and $16,000 over the lifetime.

References: 1 NACE Paper #06318, Expected Service Life and Cost Considerations for Maintenance and New Construction Protective Coating Work, Helsel, Melampy, & Wissmar, KTA-Tator, Inc. 2006. About the author: Philip G. Rahrig has been the executive director of the American Galvanizers Association for 12 years. His educational background is physics and business, and he has developed an expertise in the marketing of technical products. He is published in many industry trade journals and has conducted hundreds of seminars on the topics of the galvanizing process, corrosion theory/mechanisms, painting over hotdip galvanized steel, and life-cycle costing analysis.

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Shop Talk

Should you build what they want? Even if you know it’s not right?  Here are some things

to consider when a customer asks you to build something that you know isn’t “right.” By Lee Rodrigue Oregon Steel Detailing Editor’s note: This article represents the author’s opinions. The author is not an attorney, and makes no claims as to the legal ramifications of any of the discussions used in this article. Please consult legal counsel for any questions regarding your legal liabilities.

Virtually every fabricator has received

a request to build something that was not code compliant (or simply not a good idea), and been faced with a difficult decision: to accept the job to provide the customer what he specifically requests, or to turn down the job. It’s a question with legal, moral, and financial complications, and should never be taken lightly. Ultimately, the decision falls squarely on the fabricator’s shoulders, based on what they determine to be an acceptable level of risk. However, a quick survey of companies who have been in business for many years will show that when it comes to liability, conservative 20

decision making is the rule that will keep your company out of hot water... and possibly keep you off of the witness stand. Do your homework — know the codes and potential liability First, let’s review a primer on building codes: in virtually all North American jurisdictions, building codes are established by local or state law. Most localities have accepted versions of building codes that are established by bodies within the code community. Examples include the International Code Council (ICC), who established and maintain the International Codes (“I-Codes”) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Some, like the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the U.S. Department of Justice (who ensures compliance with the “Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA) are regulated and administered at the federal level, although enforcement tends to come from local building inspectors.

For your information About the International Code Council... The International Code Council, a membership association dedicated to building safety and fire prevention, develops the codes used to construct residential and commercial buildings, including homes and schools. Most U.S. cities, counties and states that adopt codes choose the International Codes developed by the International Code Council. Services offered by the ICC include:  Code application assistance  Educational programs

 Certification programs

 Technical handbooks and workbooks  Plan reviews

 Automated products

 Monthly magazines and newsletters

 Publication of proposed code changes  Training and Informational videos

For more information, log on to:


July/August 2007

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It is the act of violating codes

with specific knowledge that has the potential to ruin your business and your life in the future.

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When you violate a building code where it is established by statute, you are violating that statute. Whether it is established at the local, state, or federal level determines who will prosecute your violation of the law. In many instances, the violation is considered a misdemeanor, and the decision to prosecute violators lies with the district attorney. Generally, the district attorney allows the Building Department to administer fines and ensure code adherence, so violators can resolve their issues without being charged with a crime. However, in cases involving injury or property damage, the Building Department may choose to forward a case to the district attorney for consideration of criminal charges. More frequently, however, fabricators encounter issues of civil liability. The first tactic used by victims of injury is to determine whether any criminal actions have occurred. If criminal actions can be proven, then the subsequent civil argument becomes simple – the perpetrator of the crime is generally considered to be responsible for the outcome of their actions. This is why, in the filing of civil lawsuits, plaintiffs typically list everyone involved in a project. If any known but unresolved building code violations can be uncovered, thus indicating a crime, then the determination of fault becomes much easier for the plaintiffs. Weigh your risks So, let’s say a potential new customer walks in your door with a railing job that involves a renovation, and tells you that “it doesn’t require a building permit, so it’s not going to be inspected.” Does this mean that you can make the guard only 30” high? Maybe he doesn’t want to prevent the passage of a 4” sphere, because the pattern becomes “too busy.” Can you widen your clear spaces to accommodate his request? The answer is YES, you can... if you don’t mind violating building codes with specific knowledge. This is a key component in determining intent – did the defendant know that he was violating building codes? If you build code-compliant products for other customers, then it can be assumed that you are familiar with building codes. For many jurisdictions, knowledge of these codes is even mandated as part of obtaining a license. It is the act of violating codes with specific knowledge that has the potential to ruin your business and your life in the future. Although the customer in front of you doesn’t mind whether you adhere to codes or not, what about the next owner of the property? Perhaps the current owner lives in the property by himself... but imagine that a few years from now, he passes away and the home is sold to a family of five, with the youngest child being Fabricator 

July/August 2007




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15 months old. Do you think they might have a need for a code-compliant guard? Of course, it is impossible to know what future codes might require. That is why you are only held to one standard – the building code that was required by the locality at the time that the permit was obtained. Alternately, where no permit is required, you must adhere to the building code at the time of installation. Most likely, this is not what your customer wants to hear. All he wanted was a simple guard, made to his liking, and if you won‘t do it, then he’ll buy it elsewhere. Chances are, there is a fabricator out there willing to accommodate his request. This fabricator is either ignorant of the enormous risks in building non-compliant products or worse, willing to build them anyway. How about the job where you are already under contract, and you discover that the items designed and bid are not code compliant? Are you obligated to complete your contract? If the contractor, designer, and owner absolve you of responsibility, even in writing, should you proceed? The answer is NO, because none of the parties listed above have the authority to absolve you of either civil or criminal responsibility in this case. Violation of the codes is violation of the law, and only a judge or jury (by way of trial), legislature (by way of amendment to the law), or government executive (by way of pardon) can deem you “not responsible” for violations. In cases where a contract is already underway and a code

violation is uncovered, it is important to request written clarification of the problem and proposals for solutions from the design authorities or owner. Preferably, a copy of this notice should be mailed via certified mail, so that receipt of the notice can later be proven if needed. Note that any changes to the design may represent a change to the contract (requiring either more material, hours, or other costs), and these may also represent changes to the contract. If you point out the non-compliance before you are awarded the job, then you may not be responsible for bearing these additional costs. However, if you have not specified the design in your contract, then you may end up stuck with the bill. As the most specialized member of the construction team, is is generally assumed that you are the most qualified person to interpret code issues that are specific to your trade. If you require assistance in this case, then you should use the expertise of the building inspectors who will ultimately determine whether you are compliant or not. Comply and minimize liability Some people may feel that involving the building department only brings added trouble to your situation. In most cases, the opposite is true: a written interpretation from an inspector serves to protect you down the road. If you request assistance in interpreting a code and receive it, then do your best to implement their advice, then you’ve made every reasonable attempt to comply. The action of taking reasonable steps to ensure compliance is a key element in minimizing your liability in the event of a future accident. The art of dealing with code officials is one best practiced early on, with small issues that are non-critical in nature. In some cases, you may find yourself more knowledgeable than the official you are requesting help from! One successful approach to these situations is to explain your scenario with both a narrative and pictures, and provide citations from the code that you think might apply to your situation. Keep it simple and brief, and at the end of your request, phrase your question in such a manner that the answer you desire is “yes.” This type of request does many things at once. First, by providing both a narrative and pictures, you decrease the



July/August 2007


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odds that the official will misinterpret your question. It’s okay to be redundant here, because the official can always disregard information that is not germane. Second, by quoting the codes, you not only demonstrate your knowledge of them, but you also prevent the official from having to look up the latest code changes. Remember that many inspectors cannot recall the exact phrasing of every code change that they are responsible for enforcing, and a little gentle help will always be welcomed. This also serves to decrease the potential for embarrass-

ment — no one likes to be proven wrong, so by “reminding” them of the codes up front, you eliminate the need to “dig in their heels” on a potential issue. Finally, by phrasing your question to elicit a “yes” answer, you help take advantage of a common human frailty — laziness. For example, the open-ended question, “What designs are allowed?” requires a lengthy response that might require diagrams, pictures, and a consideration of all possible outcomes. In the interest of saving time and energy, officials are not likely to respond to these types of questions. After all, they are not designers, architects, or engineers. Their role is merely to interpret the codes. A better question would be, “Is this design allowed?” Perhaps the best type of question is one that has only one answer — the answer you are looking for. To craft this question, you must point specifically to each supporting detail, then ask the question. For example, “The design shown prevents passage of a 4”


sphere, has the required height and clearances, and appears to adhere to the most recent version of the code quoted below. Is this design allowed?” In this way, you allow the official to respond with a minimal amount of effort if he answers yes. Conversely, if he answers no, he must explain which part of your question is incorrect. This requires a great deal more effort, which may help “guide” him to your interpretation. As a business owner, you must be prepared to let unprofitable jobs go, and learn to recognize them before you fall victim to them. In this case, your long-term profitability is a consideration of cost-benefit ratio. The potential benefit is the profit contained within an individual job. The potential cost is the enormous liability of a future accident. If you can maintain an acceptable level of profitability while minimizing your long-term exposure to liability, then you are more likely to survive over the long haul.

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Mamber Spotlight

From Indy Cars to Iron Beds: Kane’s Steel Designs


One of Kane’s ornamental railings. LEFT: Kane Williams (left) and some buddies enjoy a respite from the road.

 This self-taught fabricator with a passion for learning is

on the fast track to success. Kane Williams of Kane’s Steel Designs, Rancho Cordova, CA, is one of NOMMA’s newest members. He recently shared with Fabricator some of his insights on becoming a selfmade fabricator, a love of learning, and a zeal for things that go fast in this Q&A interview.


You’re originally from New Zealand. How long have you been in the U.S., and what brought you



I came to the U.S. in 1995. I was a mechanic on an Indy car team that was based in Newport Beach. (I’d previously been a mechanic on a pro-


fessional racing team in Australia.) Eventually, though, the Newport Beach team went bankrupt, so I then moved to Indianapolis and became a team manager for driver Stefan Johansen’s team.


How did you get started in metalworking?

I was brought up on a dairy farm in New Zealand. On a farm, you learn to adapt to every situation and you learned to fix all the things that were broken. So, I developed repair skills. Also, my granddad’s hobby was making old style ornamental iron stuff. He lived a long way from us, so

For your information Company: Kane’s Steel Designs Location: Rancho Cordova, CA Main career: working with metals through traditional or modern designs. Side careers: Race car mechanic, motorbike and go-kart enthusiast/competitor. Words to live by: “My granddad encouraged me to use my hands in giving life to my ideas. So my motto is, ‘innovate, not imitate.’“ Contact info: Email: Ph: (916) 825-0326 Web: Fabricator 

July/August 2007



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I just saw his work when I visited. I learned by studying and asking questions. So really, I’ve always been a fabricator. I am definitely selftaught! But I’d love to go to a school. I mainly work with steel.



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I started this business four years ago. I made all of the furniture in our house, including the beds. And then someone I knew asked me to make a bed, which I did. I started working in the garage of our house. And the word spread.


Where do you find your clients? Do you advertise?

I occasionally sponsor concerts in our community, but that’s the extent of my advertising. It’s mainly by word of mouth and donating my services. For example, one of our neighbors needs a liver transplant and there’s a fundraising effort going on for that. I donated some items to be auctioned off. My daughter’s school was holding an auction as a fundraiser. I made the base for a flag, that the kids decorated with stones. The flag auctioned for $1,500. Afterwards, I had to make another similar base for someone who got outbid at the auction!

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Do you have any partners or employees in your business, or do you work with other contractors?


Sometimes, I do hire people when I need assistance, but most of the time, it’s just me. I admit that I get bored working by myself, though.


There are some very unique products featured on your web site, such as wine racks and clocks. How do you come up with the designs?


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I create the designs myself People seem to like what I do. For a custom job, the client will tell me what they need, and then I’ll come up with the design. For example, if they want a gate, I’ll take photos of an existing gate and then draw on the photo to show the customer what their customized gate is going to look like. for the installation, I’ll work with home improvement contractors as needed. Fabricator 

July/August 2007

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You encourage the use of color. What methods to you use on the steel to color it?




It’s painted. When I left racing, I had a business painting Indy cars, so I knew how to do it. The steel is primed, painted, and clear-coated. Outdoor pieces are powder-coated.


What has been your largest project to date?

I made a spiral staircase with a bunch of exterior and interior railings on a $800,000 remodeled house. I earned quite a bit off of that. That job included the entry door, false decorative railings outside windows, and a gate with grapevines.


What presents the biggest challenge in your work?

Working by yourself all the time is a little hard, and so is hiring subcontractors.

Your bio indicates a passion for racing. How do you keep that alive?

I’m married now, with a six-yearold daughter, and we all have motorbikes and go-carts. I race my go-cart every second weekend of the month. These races draw people from all over northern California. Even my Indy car buddies have come out to cheer me on! I think my daughter will get bit by the racing bug — she’s very competitive!


How did you hear about NOMMA and decide to join?

Someone I knew who owns a lot of property here in town called me — he’s interested in building a New Orleans-style structure and asked me to consult on the iron part of it. I’ve been sitting in on meetings with the architects, listening, and offering my input. But I realized I needed some


Kane’s daughter, Holly, has been bitten by the racing bug, too. She drives her own go-cart.

help. A couple of months ago, I happened to see King Architectural Metals’ catalog and it featured the NOMMA logo. When I found out what NOMMA was, I joined right away.

Attention A ttenttion Industry Indu ustry Suppliers! Su uppliers!! Obtain n additional exposure exposur ure for fo or your your byy ccompany ompan mpany b advertising in the adv ertising t NOMMA MMA 2008 Buyer’s Buy e ’s Guide er

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Online V Version ersion ion The NOMMA The NOMMA website website receives receivves an average average of 8,445 visits per mon month* th* and a the Online Supplier Directory Directory is the sec second ond most visited visit ed sec section tion on our w website. ebsit ite.

For advertising info, visit: it: www erdirectory Or,, contact T Or Todd odd Daniel at (888) 5168585, ext. 102 or *Source: *S ource: D Deep eep M Metrix etrix Liv LiveStats, eStats, Apr Aprilil 2006 study


Print P rint Version Version The pr The print int vversion ersion is pr provided ovided fr free ee tto o our ur 1,000-plus 0-plus members members,, plus it it’s ’s sold tto o the industr industry ndustry aatt a nominal rrate. ate. FFor or man many ny shops, shops s, the Buyer’s Buyer’s Guide is an indispensindispens nsday-to-day able ttool ool ffor or da y-to-day operations. operations.

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Special Feature

NOMMA: Carrying on an prestigious tradition  It was 50 years ago in Memphis, TN that a group of

dedicated individuals gathered to establish an association that would serve and represent the ornamental and miscellaneous metals industry.

By Mark Hoerrner Editor’s note: In honor of NOMMA’s upcoming 50th anniversary, we are highlighting the association’s history and achievements in a series of articles in Fabricator. The following is the first in that series. Making a living in the seventh century had its challenges. Avoiding raiding warlords, fighting off massive poverty, and existing in a world with quite a minimalist idea of plumbing could give one a rather dreary outlook on life. But for an aspiring youth who wanted a career, a few possibilities existed, provided he was willing to become part of a larger enterprise. The Guild System brought order to professions that had largely been passed from father to son for cen34

turies. Guilds enriched each industry through the sharing of best practices, competitive pricing structures and by instituting a formal system of apprenticeship. Though guilds would later face disruption by labor unions, the core principle of an association through which individual artists could network with like-minded professionals never faded into history. Though 1,300 years have passed, the National Ornamental and Miscellaneous Metals Association is the product of the Guild system evolved. Centuries rise and fall, but for more than a millennium, the traditions of ornamental design have been preserved and improved upon by a core group of metal craftspeople. These individuals are the core of the membership of NOMMA. Gone are the guildhalls and mandatory

membership practices in favor of international cooperation among members. In fact, what NOMMA did for its members was provide a national advertising campaign detailing the

For your information Don’t miss NOMMA’s 50th anniversary celebration at METALfab 2008! Make your plans now: Dates: April 1-5, 2008 Place: Memphis, TN Details: To be posted as they become available on NOMMA’s web site,


July/August 2007

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positive aspects of ornamental ironwork. It provided advice and speakers for both the national conventions and local chapters on sales and advertising. It helped craft industry standards for manufacturing specifications and developed an accounting system specifically for fabricators. From the very beginning, NOMMA members were dedicated to improving their craft and industry. Prior to NOMMA’s creation, a number of smaller organizations were in existence. Craftsmen, it seems, desire to associate with other craftsman by default. As early as 1956, some of the founding members, including Mel Peterson, held meetings sponsored by the Tennessee Fabricating Co. in Memphis, TN. A brief history The association, as it exists now, will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2008 during its return to the original convention site in Memphis. It was an august group of individuals who started the organization back in 1957. That’s right – 1957 – a full year before the organization was formally organized. The first convention in Memphis was a trial convention, but featured speakers, special sessions, and a social component. The convention was such a success with fabricators that another was planned for the following January. In 1958, the NOMMA constituency, then called NOIMA (National Ornamental Iron Manufacturers Association; the name was changed to the National Ornamental Metal Manufacturers Association in 1961, and then later changed to NOMMA in 1977), agreed to become an association and elected Frank A. Kozik of Scranton Craftsmen in Throop, PA as its first president. The actual NOMMA charter, which would not be signed for another year, bears the names of some of the organization’s most respected members: R.W. Colver, Jim Kathman, Vernon McFarland, Arthur H. Jones, Dominic Taverna, Melvin Peterson, and Vernon Stiles. John Gilchrist, a former Fabricator editor, summed up what had taken place in one of his columns: “Insofar as application of ornamental iron products is concerned, we have barely scratched the surface,” he wrote in late 1960. “There are many areas, yet untouched, where the use of ornamental iron and other metals remains virtually unexplored. Fortunately, a handful of industry leaders, with a glimpse into the future that this industry could and should enjoy, have seen fit to combine their thoughts and physical efforts in an attempt to strengthen the industry through a national organization.” At the time, fabricators had another reason to cling to one another – a massive steel strike was taking place that was driving up costs and limiting the supply of steel components and materiel. There had been a slight recession after the post-WWII boom, 36


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but fabricators were looking toward the future. The convention legacy begins in Atlanta That first official convention in 1959 was held in Atlanta, GA. The convention hosted “Learn Shops” that would later become what members know today as “Shop Talks,” featuring discussions on subjects ranging from how to clean iron to contemporary office procedures. Along with the informative sessions, fabricators swamped the exhibit hall floor to view all of the new equipment and services for sale. Silver screen and music legend Nelson Eddy headlined the entertainment at the convention. Eddy had the distinct honor of having sung for the inauguration of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and having had not one, but three gold stars on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. Atlanta would be a key city for NOMMA’s growth as John Brown of Ornamental Iron Co. in Atlanta was elected the organization’s next president and would remain so until 1964. Fabricator becomes the connection between conventions Shortly after the founding charter was signed in 1959 and Kozik was once again voted to helm the young organization, another milestone in NOMMA’s history was achieved. A magazine formerly called American Ironsmith was purchased and became the premier trade publication for NOMMA. Originally titled The National Ornamental Iron Fabricator, the magazine featured convention information, local chapter news, articles on developments in the iron business, and tips for business owners from members. Kozik commented on the magazine’s establishment back in the first issue: “Another aid which the industry has sorely needed for years and now has is an instructive, informative news medium to hold in a common bond all the fabricators scattered throughout the nation… It has long been a dream of fabricators to have their own 38

ABOVE: The first Julius Blum award for outstanding contributions to the industry, is awarded. BELOW: The General Session of NOMMA’s first official convention in Atlanta.

magazine, a magazine that would be concerned only with problems and news that specifically relates to ornamental iron. The value of such a publication cannot be overemphasized.” Kozik then urged all fabricators to subscribe to the magazine that would be the premier ornamental iron journal for more than 5,000 shops across the nation. A full year’s subscription was just $3 for the black-and-white publication that was composed of just 16 pages at the time. The magazine was published erratically between 1965 and 1967, but a clear decision to fully support the magazine in September 1967 sparked

the development of a regular editorial schedule and consistent publishing of the magazine. Since then, the magazine’s page count has significantly increased along with its value to the members; there has also been a corresponding increase in the number of advertisers supplying key goods to the membership. While Fabricator filled the months between convention dates, the conventions were the key venues for the exchange of ideas, and for promoting networking and camaraderie amongst the membership. The conventions, based on early Fabricator articles and photographs, have always been wellFabricator 

July/August 2007


Top Job 2008

American Ironsmith was Fabricator’s predecessor.

Get the recognition you deserve! Enter your outstanding work in the Ernest Wiemann Top Job Contest

Open to all NOMMA members

Details and forms available from the NOMMA Member’s Only Area

Deadlines: December 14, 2007 Late Deadline: Jan. 4, 2008 National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association 40

attended, even when the elements conspired against the event. It’s worth noting that, on the opening day of the 1963 convention, the temperature was a balmy 18 degrees below zero. Despite the bone-chilling weather, the membership was not deterred from attending. That kind of stalwart determination from NOMMA members became commonplace at the conventions. From 1961 forward, the organization developed policies at the national conventions that shaped the future of NOMMA and the industry of ornamental and architectural metalwork. Key issues, such as industry standardization, market policies, insurance for members, and facilitating greater cooperation among members, were the topics of keynote speeches at the conventions. Out of those early conventions came the Top Job Competition, an industry recognition event celebrating the top design work for the year. Also, the Julius Blum Award, recognizing significant contributions to the industry, was instituted. The conventions – not all work and no play It seems that the membership has never been solely about the business. While NOMMA has always been dedicated to helping the craftsman profit from his craft and promoting ethical business practices, NOMMA members and guests have been known to show a playful side. At the 1960 convention, a special drink called the “Railbender” was developed by the New Orleans hotel that hosted the convention. It was a power-packed 11-oz. drink so strong that the hotel limited consumption to two per person. The price: $1.50, which was stout by even tourist standards — a similar drink would cost $10-12 today. Also introduced at that New Orleans convention was “Miss O.I.,” who was listed as “Bonnie Young, 19-year Fabricator 

July/August 2007

old Louisiana Belle, selected to represent the Ornamental Iron Industry of 1960.” The idea came out of a comparison to other industries, such as the cotton industry, which had its “Maid of Cotton,” and the commercial printers, who had “Miss Printing Devil.” The 1964 convention was opened by Miami Mayor Melvin J. Richards, who distributed police courtesy cards to the attendees. The cards wouldn’t keep the bearer out of jail, Richards said, but would guarantee a beaming smile from the arresting officer. Las Vegas was the site of the 1967 convention, which was held at the Stardust Hotel. The Stardust, at the time, boasted the title of the “world’s largest resort hotel.” Howard Hughes had tried to buy the hotel just the year before, but was denied for anti-trust reasons. This past March, the hotel was demolished to make room for a new resort hotel, Echelon Place. Leon York of York Metal Fabricators in Oklahoma City, OK, received permission in 1969 to name

all convention attendees “Honorary Okies,” and had lapel pins made for each member designating them as such. York later surprised the membership at the 1974 convention by wearing an “aluminum-enhanced” cowboy outfit as he rode into the convention hall on a magnificent stallion. Looking toward the future One common trait that seems to have characterized those who developed NOMMA in the early days was their forward vision, their ability to see everything that NOMMA could be to shops large and small as the industry progresses through new technology and techniques. The pages of those old issues of Fabricator, yellowed as they are now by the years, contain the hopes and dreams of each fabricator who helped architect the organization. Even when times seemed bleak, NOMMA members looked ahead with pride and trepidation. This was the insight of L.S. Clarke, editor of Fabricator in 1959:

“Today we can look back on the dark days of 1958 when the recession was at its worst and be grateful that intelligence, dogmatism and American ingenuity brought us through those black days. We can look forward to an even greater productivity, greater standard of living – increased sales and profits - and all the benefits that go with it. All business forecasts indicate a continued upward growth pattern. So let’s all put those fears of a depression aside and work towards a more prosperous country.” Nearly five decades later, the beliefs of those who founded NOMMA still ring true – that membership doesn’t cost; it pays. And every time those conventions are opened by the organization’s president, the echoes of the ancient guilds and the craftsmen who formed them sound loudly as a reminder of what a group of individuals who choose to work together toward a positive goal can achieve.

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Job Profile

Difficult road to paradise...

 The power of

observation and attention to details — plus faith — were keys to the design of this award-winning entry gate.

By Sheila Phinazee

NOMMA member Klahm and Sons Inc. won a Silver Award in the Driveway Gates-Forged category in this year’s Top Job Contest at METALfab 2007 for their Via Paradisus Driveway Gates. The firm joined NOMMA in 1977 and won its first Top Job award in 1979. Inspiration comes from details A developer who had purchased a 1000-acre farm approached Jack about 42

designing a type of entrance no one had ever seen before. The property — which had been a renowned race horse training facility known as Franks Farm — was now a high-end residential community called Via Paradisus (Road to Paradise). But in its heyday, Franks Farm had the reputation of having the most wins in horse racing in the United States. With Florida being the horse capital of the world, Franks’ Farm had 750-800 horses in training at a time — and this volume was part of the reason for Mr. Frank’s success.

For your information Project: Entry gates for upscale residential community Shop: Klahm & Sons Inc., Ocala, FL Timeline: It took five workers and a period of six months to complete the job. Listen to the man: Jack Klahm credits Ernest Wiemann with some of the best business advice he ever got: “Get in there and just learn how to do it.”


July/August 2007

Jack used this interesting background information on Franks Farm and its reputation for inspiration in designing the entrance gates for Via Paradisus. “Study what is in front of you, listen to what’s around you, think about who lived there,” says Klahm. “I took into consideration that Mr. Franks was also a geologist who’d made his money in petroleum. And the fact that he was from Louisiana.”


Todd Wiggins fine-tunes some of the detail work on a section of the gate.

Jack wanted to create something that Mr. Franks (now deceased) would be proud if he had been alive. For this project, Jack felt the race horse theme was redundant and that oil rigs would be too much of a reference to Texas. So he decided, instead, to integrate the French influence of Franks’ birthplace — Louisiana — into his palette. He also looked at the current landscape for inspiration. The Via Paradisus community’s roads are lined with a beautiful canopy of trees. “These trees are more than 60 years old — it reminds you of paradise,” says Jack. “So, we added 44


July/August 2007

Jack Klahm, on the floor of his shop, assesses the progress of a gate panel.

garlands of roses throughout the center of the gates to symbolize the Garden of Eden.” The arch on the top of the gates with leaves and acorns in the C-scroll ornaments and the leaves underneath also echo the canopy of trees lining

Heinz Klahm (Jack’s dad) also put in some hours on the project. July/August 2007 


the streets of the property. Initially, Jack planned to do it all the “old” way, but he soon decided to incorporate more modern techniques. The scrollwork was drawn with overs and unders and edge conditioning. Once it was drawn on computer, Jack used the C and C machine to cut out foam pieces, and then cast work on 4 -foot square panels that were connected. Jack’s team then beveled, welded, and ground panels to connect the parts. Using older techniques would have allowed only 70 percent penetration, which could have been problematic, since each gate is made of 850 lbs. of aluminum. “Our way created 100 percent penetration,” states Jack. “The gates have amazing structural integrity. An engineer who checked out the work vouched for this.” Using state-of-the-art, time-saving techniques allowed the project team to concentrate on the details of the work. In addition to saving time, Jack’s team gained increased structural integrity with updated methods. “Normally there is a sway with a gate of this size, but with this one, there was not even 1 /16 of an inch,” he notes.

Jack used 356 alloy (pigs or ingets from the smelters). He drew leaves on the computer, but used a Pullmax to vein the leaves. The aluminum leaves have 23-carat gold leaf, and the roses were water jet cut out of thick, 32 oz. copper. He combined five different patterns to create the leaves. The models for the gates’ cherub heads were fatcheeked baby dolls found in a toy store. After the doll faces were laser scanned, Jack used a five-axis router on a chunk of wood to carve each head. Once the two halves of the cherubs were created, they were then hollowed out. This proved to be a crucial step — due to the mass of aluminum, they would otherwise shrink. “We used modern laser scanning, water jet, and casting techniques for this project,” notes Klahm, adding that fellow NOMMA member Derek Minetti of CLS Enterprises was instrumental in helping with the primary casting process. (For an in-depth look at the unique technology CLS Enterprises has developed for casting, see the companion article, page ??) “Utilizing modern technology helps get the job out the door. Chiseling each leaf would have taken forever. Not only did the technology save time on this job, but it also allowed us to achieve consistency in each leaf ’s appearance, using the water jet.” Quality workmanship and artisanship are not abandoned, though — they were still needed to give the piece character and an aged appearance. Tragedy strikes during the project Tragically, Jack’s oldest son, Richard, died in the middle of the Via Paradisus project, on April 16, 2006. Richard had worked with his father for 15 years after leaving the Coast Guard. Sadly, Richard had been working on the gate’s arch when he was killed in a motorcycle accident. The project 45

“The concept and perception of what it takes to create a piece like this comes from experience and from your faith.” is dedicated to him and his memory also lives on through organs he donated, benefiting five different people. The loss was deep for Jack, particularly on three levels: he lost a son, a skilled craftsman known for his organic craftwork, and the future successor of Klahm and Sons. Jack says his faith helped him to carry on under these extreme conditions. The Via Paradisus gates have many different meanings for him, including memorial and monumental. The gates’ cherubs are a kind of time capsule — Richard’s name is carved inside of one and Jack’s and Richard’s names in another. Family and life lessons lead to business success Jack Klahm spent his formative years with his family in Hawaii. His parents, both teachers, saw that their son was not inclined for college. Although Jack was tested and found to be mechanically-gifted early on, the lure of the beach was greater than that of getting a formal education. So, with foresight, his parents took out a $40,000 loan and started a business with their sons’ future in mind. Klahm & Sons, which was incorporated in 1972, was originally a furniture business, featuring specialty pieces. Klahm’s parents went on buying trips around the world during the summers when school was out. Jack ran the business for three years after which his brother, Alex, joined him. After spending 17 years in the business, Alex left to pursue other ventures. In 1983, Jack met his future wife, Becky; they married two years later. Becky’s three sons, Richard, Tommy, and John, became Jack’s sons… and joined him as partners in the company. In the early days of the business, Jack assembled heavy ornamental furniture from the Philippines and revised 46


July/August 2007

other specialty pieces from different countries, customizing them to clients’ wishes. He also made countless security windows — an item in great demand for upscale homes in Hawaii — using rebar, 12’ square, an AC buzz box, hand shear, railroad railing as an anvil, and a brake drum with a propane torch as his forge. While in Hawaii, Jack worked on Ioloni Palace and the Hulihee Palace and did other historic metal work. He’d found another passion — restoration, or “working with old stuff,” as he calls it. Over the years, he worked on the Royal Mausoleum, Father Damion’s Gravesite, Vizcaya Museum, White Hall, the Key West Lighthouse, the San Carlos Museum, and other notable historic sites in Hawaii and Florida.


Klahm & Sons employee Tom Hadzima works on a section of the gate.




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Another of Jack’s passions is water skiing — an avid water skier for many years, he has won several awards including the 1986 Men’s National Knee Board Best Overall for slalom, trick, and jump. So, Jack had dreamed of living in Florida with its many lakes for recreation and potential east coast restoration projects for business. This dream became a reality when he and his family moved to Florida in 1984. (Jack’s parents live only a few miles away, and his mother is currently writing a soon-tobe-released book, Is Grass Growing Under Your Feet?) Just as he did on the Via Paradisus project, Jack always stops to look, listen, and take in the environment for inspiration for his work — a lesson he says he learned on the beach. “We live in a drive-thru, control-oriented, hurry up world. We try to squeeze in too much,” he says. “But if you listen to the ocean…. look at what is right in front of you, like the sunset… it’s phenomenal.” Faith also plays a big part in Jack’s life and work. He recalls being skeptical the first time he heard a fabricator say that God guided his hands. But Jack has since experienced this divine guidance first-hand, particularly when he does something he’s never done before. “I ask God for the right decisions and to guide my hands,” he explains. “And then I experience a freedom—fluidity and movement in process.” Jack adds that this applied to his vision and execution of the Via Paradisus gates. “The concept and perception of what it takes to create a piece like this comes from experience and from your faith. Gifts from God will come through what you do as far as your work.” Jack has other lessons he likes to pass on to fellow fabricators. One is some words of wisdom he learned from his grandmother — don’t make a rash decision; it’s okay to sleep on it. Another is to keep your feet planted in reality. “Everybody needs to have humility, it keeps you grounded,” he says. “For example, Einstein was a genius, but he had dyslexia. We all have some sort of disability. It really puts you in touch with doing the best you can.” Fabricator 

July/August 2007

Tel: 800-522-4766 Fax: 888-699-9666 Email:


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Job Profile

Unique casting process is integral part of awardwinning project  A NOMMA member’s

variation of the lost foam technique makes costs and turnaround time predictable.

When Jack Klahm began his Via Paradisus gate project (see feature, page 42), he called on fellow NOMMA member Derek Minotti of CLS Enterprises to assist with the cast panels. Using his own variation of the lost foam technique, Derek and his employees took on the challenge of creating 40 castings for this enormous job. Derek shared some of the details of the job with Fabricator in a recent interview:


You use a lost foam casting process in your shop, but you’ve done some “tweaking” to improve it for your uses. What’s involved in the


process and what adaptations did you make?

For your information


Lost foam casting (LFC) is a type of investment casting process that uses foam patterns as the investment. The method takes advantage of the properties of foam to simply and cheaply form castings that would be difficult or impossible, using normal "cope and drag" techniques.

We use the “lost foam” technique to produce our panels. Like lost wax, lost foam is an expendable pattern process in which we make a pattern for every piece we are going to produce. The exact process we use to make the foams is a trade secret, but the basics are as follows. First, we cut a piece of foam the thickness of the panel to be cast and then we surface condition the “slab.” Next, we run the slabs through a series of CNC machines that perform tasks such as edge conditioning, surface detailing, and profiling. The finished

Commonly used metals include:  gray iron

 ductile (or nodular) iron  aluminium alloys

 copper-based casting alloys Source: Wikipedia


July/August 2007

foams are then hand inspected and any imperfections are hand blended. At this point, basic panels are ready to go to the foundry. “Premium” and “super premium panels” go to the foam smithing department where embellishments such as balls and rivets, collars, and overlaps are added. Lastly, the completed foam patterns go to the casting department. The casting of the foams is a very complicated process that utilizes sev-

eral techniques we developed in order to cast large panels. The simple version is that the foams are dipped in a slurry and allowed to dry. Next, the coated patterns are placed in a box and surrounded with sand. Molten aluminum is then poured into the box, which vaporizes the foam and precisely duplicates all of the features of the pattern. The finished product has a beautiful texture that rivals old iron.


A finished casting made by CLS.


Why does this process work so well for ornamental jobs?

There are many benefits to using the lost foam process to produce custom cast ornamental panels.


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 First and foremost is control. The metalsmith that chooses to use our product has complete control over details such as the size, style, and shapes of the scrolls.

 Since we make a pattern for every panel produced, customers aren’t tied into any one particular size or style. Plus, our castings don’t have a parting line and don’t need draft.  The foam patterns create a casting that has a surface that rivals old iron for a very authentic look.  The cost of our panels runs about one half to one third of the price of traditional hand forged metalwork.

 Because the majority of the process is computer-controlled, we can produce panels at a very predictable rate, which then makes our customer’s turnaround times more predictable.  We’ve taken the guesswork out of bidding because we’ve priced our custom cast panels like a component. Bidding on hand forged metalwork can be very risky and it takes years of experience before you can get a handle on producing accurate bids. There are Fabricator 

July/August 2007

so many individual processes involved and being off just a small amount on each one can spell disaster on your bottom line. Using our panels means less risk for the fabricator.

 Working with our castings is very straightforward. If you can run a 4 1 /2” grinder and a jigsaw you can clean up a panel. It’s a lot easier to hire a cleanup person than someone who can forge a ball scroll. Also, there’s no need to invest in a forge, a power hammer, or scroll forms.  Using our product, fabricators can take on projects that previously would have been too large for their shop to handle. Most shops don’t have the equipment or personnel to produce hand forged metalwork, but with Custom Cast Ornamental Panels, two cleanup people and a fabricator can pump out a ton of railing. By using our castings you’ll be able to say, “Yes we do that,” when customers want a custom forged look.


Andy Harding of Klahm & Sons works on assembling the panels.

928-422-1000 July/August 2007 



This section shows the intricacies of the gate’s design. Some elements, such as balls, rivets, and rope appliqués, were incorporated into the castings, saving hours of tedious hand labor.



How long did it take you to develop this process?

I produced my first ornamental job using this technique about 10 years ago. I had to hand-cut all of the foam patterns and the largest piece I could cast was 18” x 18”. The castings looked great, but it took about twice as long to produce than if I had handforged them. I knew I had a great idea, but I needed a way of automating the whole process, so I learned all I could about CNC-controlled machines and automation. It took about five years of trial and error to perfect all of the different systems.


You assisted Jack Klahm on the Via Paradisus project, for which he won a Silver Award in this year’s Top Job Contest. What was the extent of your involvement on the job?


I came in fairly early on Jack’s Via Paradisus project. His shop is about five minutes away from mine. He’s been watching my progress with lost foam casting over the years, and offering quite a bit advice on wrought 54

iron design and fabrication. I started the project with his conceptual drawings of the gates. Jack decided early on that he was going to embrace a high tech approach to this project. He wanted to start with a complete CAD drawing of the gates and arches including the hinges and column placement. After I had the framework drawn up, we sat down and decided which parts of the gates were going to be cast panels and which elements were going to hand-forged and repousséed. Right away, we realized that all of the items on the gates that he would normally forge would be good candidates for my panels. I then proceeded to digitize one of his hand-forged scrolls. I converted that scroll into a CAD drawing and used it for all the scrolls in the gate. Jack and I came up with a method of design that ended up working out quite well. I would do a rough draft of a section of the gate and print it out full size, and Jack would sketch in changes to the layout. Then, I’d scan the drawing back into the computer and replace Jack’s sketches with CAD lines. This method worked well

because it allowed Jack to work in a medium he was comfortable with, and allowed me to replicate it in the computer. Working with Jack has a tendency to raise the bar and this project was no exception. These gates were, by far, the biggest project my shop ever produced and we made a total of 40 castings. Prior to this, we had focused on basic flat castings with an occasional collar. During the development of the drawings for Paradisus, Jack asked if I could incorporate details such as the balls, rivets, overlaps, and rope appliqués into the castings. Jack Klahm’s ideas definitely helped us to push the boundaries of what we could produce using the lost foam process.


How many hours were put in on this project from your end? What was the timeline?


Start to finish, it took about eight weeks to develop the drawings and produce the castings. We delivered castings on a weekly basis, which allowed Jack’s fabricators time to clean up the panels for assembly. Fabricator 

July/August 2007


Jack mentioned this high structural integrity of your cast pieces; also that they kept the gate from sinking. Can you elaborate on this?

Traditional and Contemporary Malleable Iron Styles


Traditionally, when you fabricate an ornamental item, you take straight pieces of bar stock, manipulate them into various designs, and weld them together. It’s relatively easy to get a good weld on the surface, but welding on the inside of some joints can be problematic, if not impossible. Because of this, in every place there is a weld, there is also flex and the potential for failure. The panels we produce through the lost foam process are a continuous pour with no welds and, consequently, no flex at the joints. This makes for a much more rigid structure — which kept Jack’s gate from sinking even a fraction of an inch.


How did you get started in metalworking and in working with aluminum?

When I was young, I learned how to work with metal through car restoration. Then, I made high-end contemporary metal furniture and artwork in South Florida during the 80’s. My materials of choice were stainless steel and aluminum. Over time, I became interested in traditional ironwork design, but wasn’t too crazy about working in steel. In 1997, I relocated my shop to Ocala, FL, where I produced my first “lost foam� ornamental job. Soon after that, I attended a NOMMA event at Jack’s shop. I watched him take a piece of solid aluminum bar and forge it into a beautiful railing picket and from there, I was hooked on ornamental aluminum.


Has your casting process been well received in the industry?

My business partner and I are very excited about our castings because we believe we’ve developed a new way to produce ornamental metalwork. Our product is unique because it is not as costly as custom hand-forged metalwork, yet it looks handmade; and it’s not the same predictable component pieces that are available in catalogs. We had a booth at the recent METALfab convention in Destin, and we were blown away by the response we received. We’re very excited about the future of this product. About CLS Enterprises: CLS Enterprises is a small company with six employees. Derek Minotti handles the sales and pattern-making departments. His business partner oversees the foundry, which has been in his own family for 39 years. They’re known for their quality work, and customers like Jack Klahm have been using them for years to produce traditional sand castings. July/August 2007 





Job Profile

NOMMA member featured on ABC’s ‘Extreme Makeover’

It was a race against time to build this dream home for a very deserving family.

By Helen K. Kelley There were 12 people living in Jesus and Michelle Jacobo’s tiny house in Kansas City, MO. The Jacobos already had four children of their own, but had opened their generous hearts to take in and care for five nieces and nephews. In addition, Michelle’s father, Ray, had moved in to help care for all of the children. The house was crowded beyond belief. ABC-TV’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” came to the Jacobos’ rescue. This popular television show is based on the premise of finding a deserving family in need of better living conditions, and rebuilding their entire house — in just seven days. The 56

scope of the Jacobo home included 5,400 square feet on three floors. NOMMA member Bob’s Ornamental Iron was selected to fabricate and install all of the interior and exterior custom rails for the Jacobos’ new home. Looking back on the project, Bob Foust III said it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. “It was a fantastic opportunity for us to give back to the community,” he said, “as well as benefit from a national marketing perspective.” There’s always a glitch Part of the excitement of the television show is the deadline of having the new home completely finished in only

For your information Project: Fabricate and install railings for home rebuild on national television show Timeline: Seven days Materials used: Interior rails consisted of wide molded cap with hand-forged lamb’s tongue finials. The pickets were ½” solid with forged scrolls at both ends and a diamond design in the center. The exterior rails were built to a radius and core drilled and grouted in place.


July/August 2007

one week. The films are edited and condensed into a one-hour episode that depicts only a fraction of the work — and the headaches — that actually goes into the project. Bob says that it really did all take place in only a week, and that there were a few tense moments. “We were asked to work on this project on Thursday, March 8th,” he recalls. “We received the concept drawing on Friday and began building parts and pieces the next day.” The following Tuesday morning, crews tore down the Jacobos’ old house and had the new home framed by Wednesday evening. At 9 p.m. that night, the guys from Bob’s Ornamental were able to take rough measurements, and by the next afternoon, the work was far enough along to allow final measurements. But things got a little rough after that. “We were scheduled to install between 8 p.m. and midnight on Friday, but they fell behind and moved us to 6 a.m. on Saturday. The builder had to

July/August 2007 



The pace on Saturday morning became frantic, when installation times were pushed back and an extra handrail was suddenly needed.


UPPER LEFT AND RIGHT: The new home is framed, and legions of workers volunteered their time and talents. CENTER LEFT AND RIGHT: Workers labored day and night to get the home ready in seven days. LOWER LEFT: The bus bearing the Jacobo family arrives in front of the new home.


release the house back to ABC by noon Saturday, which turned into about 6 p.m.” explains Bob. “But, on Friday evening, Jason Begnaud and I went up there to scope out the area and found out they’d forgotten to add a wall-mounted handrail leading to the basement. We volunteered to make it and install it by the next morning. Then, on Saturday morning, we found out that they added four feet to a retaining wall, which our rail was to be placed on.” The site inspector told the builder that the house could not pass code if the additional four feet was not added on to the retaining wall. So Jason stayed and continued the installation of the interior rail, while Bob went back to the shop to call in some reinforcements. They built, cleaned, and painted the additional rail, took it back to the home site, and had it installed by 1 p.m. that afternoon. Bob says that their portion of the project took about 142 hours to complete, with the help of 15 people. A heart-warming sight The crew from Bob’s Ornamental was present when the Jacobo family were brought by bus to see their new home for the first time. Fabricator 

July/August 2007

Bob says that it was extremely gratifying to work on this project and to see the Jacobos move into a home that met their needs. “We have participated in several community projects in the past, but this was the first time we donated all the time and materials,” he says. “It was tough to get it done in a week, but worth it.” Editor’s note: The episode featuring the Jacobo family aired on ABC-TV on May 13th. For more information on this and other episodes of “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” log on to:

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July/August 2007

Join NOMMA Today

Increase your knowledge • Network and learn from peers • Enhance your company’s exposure Join the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association and you’ll receive.... n Introductory Package - Upon joining you will receive a kit containing the Membership Directory, Buyer’s Guide, logo slicks, and a sampling of our educational booklets and sales aids. n Technical support on issues related to codes and standards. n Email discussion forum - the perfect place to get your questions answered. n NOMMA eWeb - This “members only” area of our website contains technical support information on ADA, driveway gates, building codes, and more. n Subscriptions to TechNotes, our bimonthly technical bulletin and Fabricator’s Journal, our bimonthly “how to” publication. You’ll receive O&MM Fabricator as well. n Subscription to NOMMA Newswire, our biweekly email newsletter. n Discounts to METALfab, our annual convention, continuing education programs, and other events. n Discounts to the training DVDs and various publications provided by the NOMMA Education Foundation. Membership Categories Please Check One: ☐ Fabricator $415 - Metal fabricating shops, blacksmiths, artists or other firms and individuals in the industry whose products or services are sold directly to the consumer or the consumer’s immediate agent or contractor. ☐ Nationwide Supplier $585 - Firms that sell supplies, raw materials, equipment, machinery, or services on a nationwide or international basis.

n Awards contest - A great way to get recognition for your work. n Insurance program - participate in the NOMMA-endorsed insurance progam. Enjoy competitive rates and a unique program customized for our industry. n Affiliation and recognition - As a member you are encouraged to display the NOMMA logo on your company stationery, sales literature, building, vehicles, etc.. n Industry support - Your dues advances the work of the NOMMA Technical Affairs Division, which represents industry interests with code bodies, government entities, and standards-setting organizations. This advocacy work is essential to ensure that our industry has a voice with organizations that can impact our industry and livelihoods. n Member Locator - Obtain extra exposure with our online member locator. Our website receives over 15,000 visitors per month, including visits from architects, contractors, and consumers. n Chapters - If there is a chapter in your area you can enjoy local education events, social activities, tours, and demos.

☐ Regional Supplier $455 - Firms that sell supplies, raw materials, equipment, machinery, or services only within a 500-mile radius. ☐ Local Supplier $365.00 - Firms that sell supplies, raw materials, equipment, machinery, or services only within a 150-mile radius. ☐ Affiliate $300 - Individuals, firms, & organizations which do not engage in the fabrication of ornamental or miscellaneous metal products and do not provide products or services to the industry but which have a

special interest in the industry. Please note: n The membership year runs from July 1 to June 30. n Membership dues payments are not deductible as a charitable contribution, but may be deducted as an ordinary and necessary business expense. n By signing this application, you agree to abide by NOMMA’s Bylaws and Code of Ethics upon acceptance. n Checks should be made payable to NOMMA.

☐ YES, I want to join today so that I can start enjoying the benefits of a NOMMA membership! Company Name____________________________________Your Name______________________________________ Address_________________________________________________________________________________________ City______________________________State_________Zip___________________Country_____________________ Phone________________________________Fax_____________________Sponsor (if any)______________________ E-mail______________________________________________Web_________________________________________ Company Specialty/Description_____________________________________________________________________ Signature___________________________________Payment Method ☐ Check ☐ VISA ☐ MC ☐ AMEX ☐ Discover Credit card #___________________________________________________________________Exp_____/______ Exact name on card_____________________________________Signature___________________________________ Return to: NOMMA, 1535 Pennsylvania Ave., McDonough, GA 30253 (888) 516-8585 Fax: (770) 288-2006

Join online at:

Biz Side

How to maximize your after-tax dollars in 2007... and improve your net income

 There are steps you can

take right now to reduce your income taxes. By William J. Lynott If you’re like most shop owners, you probably think of every dollar as being the same as every other dollar. In truth, there are two kinds of dollars — before-tax dollars and after-tax dollars. After-tax dollars are real dollars; when you spend them, each one is worth 100 cents. Before-tax dollars are quite different. While they may look the same on paper, a before-tax dollar is something of an illusion; it’s worth less than 100 cents. How much less depends on your tax bracket — and how well you do your homework. So, how do you go about maximiz62

ing those valuable after-tax dollars? By taking advantage of every legitimate way to slash your income taxes, and the best way to do that is to avoid lastminute attempts to make up for your failure to plan early. The best time to reduce your 2007 (and every year from now on) income taxes to a minimum is right now. Here’s how:

For your information

Organize your records If you scramble every April looking for receipts and other tax record, you’re probably missing some healthy deductions. So, start out right by organizing your records well ahead of tax time. Set up separate manila fold-

More informationon the red flags that can trigger a tax audit by the IRS and advice on how to reduce or avoid them is available through many online resources. It may also be helpful to study guidelines offered by the IRS on their web site. Here are a few recommended sites:


July/August 2007

ers for expense and income records and file them as they accumulate. You’ll make your accountant’s job much easier (and your bill much lower) next April. Maximize your tax-deferred retirement account early “Don’t wait until tax filing time to fund your retirement account,” says CPA Carol I. Katz, Baltimore, MD. “If you have the cash available, making the maximum allowable deposits into your 401(k) or IRA account as early in

the year as possible not only reduces your tax load, it also adds months to the tax-deferred compounding of your investment.” If you haven’t yet set up a retirement account, now is the time to take action. “The latest increases in allowed contributions to pension plans offer important tax advantages,” says Katz. “For example, 401(k) annual allowable contributions for 2007 are $15,500, with an extra $5,000 allowed if one is age 55 or older.

Of course, some NOMMA members are not in a position to make the maximum contribution. For anyone in that situation, making the highest contribution that finances will permit is a wise move from both the tax and investment points of view. Take advantage of the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 (JGTRRA) JGTRRA lowered marginal federal tax rates across the board. Among the changes that may affect you is a reduc-

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July/August 2007 



...the time you spend

chipping away at your income taxes may be the most profitable investment you’ll make this year. tion in the tax rate on qualified dividend income and long-term capital gains from 20 percent to 15 percent. With tax rates on this type of income at a much lower rate than ordinary income tax rates, now is the time to examine your investment portfolio to see if you should take some capital gains at the lower tax rate. If you plan to buy any stocks this year, it may be best to invest in quality dividend-paying stocks to take advan-

tage of the 15 percent tax rate on dividends.

vehicles, trucks and vans, but is generally limited to $25,000.

Take advantage of Section 179 “One of the most important tax savings possibilities opened up by JGTRRA is the Section 179 deduction,” says CPA Cheryl Pimlott, Roseland, NJ. “This provision allows you to deduct the full cost of capital assets in the year of purchase up to a defined limit.” If you’re planning to purchase any equipment or any other assets in 2008, you may want to purchase those assets this year. The maximum for this immediate deduction is $112,000 for 2007. The ability to expense your costs also applies to certain sport utility

Start searching now for those tax-reducing deductions that you may have missed last year “Small business owners often miss out on important tax deductions by waiting until the last minute,” says Paul Rich, CPA, Siegel Rich Division of Rothstein Kass, Roseland, NJ. “Among tax benefits easy to overlook are tax credits on both federal and state tax returns. For example, a federal tax credit can now be claimed by eligible small businesses for pension plan startup costs. The credit equals 50 percent of the startup costs incurred to create or maintain a new retirement plan.”

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The pension plan tax credit is limited to $500 in any tax year. You may claim it for qualified costs incurred in each of the three years beginning with the tax year in which your plan becomes effective. You must use IRS Form 8881 to set up a new retirement plan and the procedure is rather complex. So, it’s important to consult with your tax advisor before proceeding. Deductions for travel, meals and entertainment are also among the often-missed tax relief possibilities. “Most small business owners do not keep adequate documentation for these expenses,” says Rich. “As a result, Fabricator 

July/August 2007

they lose out on deductions that could deduction both ways and use the percent of your time on pleasure, you provide significant tax relief.” method that gives you the biggest cannot deduct the cost of transportaDocumentation Lynott for travel and deduction. tion. entertainment expenses that you incur When you calculate your deduction If the trip is entirely for business during the year should include a using actual expenses, you may purposes, such as attendance at a condescription of the business purpose include the business portion of all car vention or trade related to your busiand such details as where and when operating expenses including depreciness, you may chalk up the entire you traveled or entertained. ation, gas and oil, insurance, licenses, expense to business. any expenses take advantage of this is to pre-pay in December In the case of entertainment — a parking fees, registration fees, repairs,  Consider pre-paying expenses lunch or dinner, for example — your tires, tolls, and even garage rent. due in January. This will increase your deductions this record should include the name of the If you decide to use the standard You probably use the for cash method person or persons entertained and the mileage rate, the 2007 deduction is of accounting. “Under the cash year. For your mile rent is duemethod,” at the beginning of the nature of the business discussion. Youexample, 44.5 cents if per business (the highsays Sethi, “a business recogshould keep receipts for any travel/ est rate ever). nizes income only when it construcentertainment expense over $ and mail the check for January tively receives the payment. Expenses month, rent few days before  Combine pleasure trips with a bit are deductible only after you make the of business  Put the kids to work actual payment. the end of the year.” Do you have children? Are you givOne way to take advantage of this If you’re planning any pleasure ing them an allowance? is to pre-pay in December any expenstrips before the end of the year, conMaximizing after-tax requires a little By putting your children to work in es due in January. This will increaseearly sideryour the possibility of adding indollars some your business, you convert their peryour deductions for this year. For business. Can you visit a metal fabriand effort part, the time youis due spend sonal allowance intoplanning deductible comif your rent at the cation shop on owneryour to discuss manage-but example, pensation. beginning of the month, date and mail ment techniques? Any activity involvAnd it gets better. If your kids areaway ing check for January few days attempt to improve your busi- maythebe chipping atan your income taxes the mostrent profitable under 18 and work for your unincorbefore the end of the year.” ness skills should qualify for a partial porated business, you need pay no Maximizing your after-tax dollars deduction of travel expenses. investment you’ll make this year. Social Security or Medicare taxes on requires a little early planning and If more than half of your time will their earnings. be devoted to business, you may effort on your part, but the time you ### “You can pay them $4,000 each and deduct transportation costs as well as spend chipping away at your income then make Roth IRA contributions for all directly business-related expenses. taxes may be the most profitable them in the same amount,” says CPA However, if you spend moreSidebar than 50 investment you’ll make this year. Robert S. Seltzer, Beverly Hills, CA. Tax Savings Highlights Since you’re giving the kids an allowance anyway, putting them to work in Changes Notes Category the business, for even the Capital Top rate reduced to 15% from Rates revert to simplest of chores, allows Gains 20% (and to 5% from 10% for previous levels Uncle Sam to help fund that expense. lower income taxpayers). after 2008  Will you use your car for business this year? Whether you use your car for business regularly or only on rare occasions, you are entitled to deduct the costs of maintenance and operation for the business-use portion. There are two ways to calculate your auto expense deduction, either actual expenses or the standard mileage rate. Katz advises that you or your accountant figure out your auto July/August 2007 



Top rate fell to 15% from 36.5%

Income Tax

Child Care Credit

Across-the-board income tax cuts became effective January 1, 2003. Top tax bracket dropped from 38.6% to 35%. The IRS has launched an online calculator to figure the AMT Maximum credit of $3,000 for one child $6,000 for two

Marriage Penalty

Standard deduction for married taxpayers, $10,300

Alternative Minimum Tax

Rates revert to previous levels after 2008 Rates revert to previous levels after 2010 Log on to See 1040 instructions for calculating amount As of 2006 65


Creating a powerful sales plan  Putting

your sales goals and strategies down on paper — clearly and concisely — is an effective tool for business growth.

By Dave Kahle Field salespeople have a unique aspect to their jobs — they have the ability to decide what to do every moment of every day. The need to make this decision — where to go, who to see, who to call, what to do — distinguishes the sales profession from most others. I’ve often thought that the quality of this decision, more than any other single thing, dictates the quality of the salesperson’s results. Consistently make effective decisions, and your results will improve. Make thoughtless, habitual, or reactive decisions, and your results will be sub-par. One of the ways to ensure that you 66

make good decisions about your selling time is to create a comprehensive sales plan. What’s a sales plan? A sales plan is a written, thoughtful set of decisions about the most effective things you can do. A sales plan should be the result of some good thinking, wherein you analyze and prioritize a number of different aspects of your job. A good sales plan addresses different time durations and different aspects of your job. Part of it, for example, should be done on an annual basis. The sales plan begins with a specifying of a series of annual sales goals. What,

For your information According to Tony Parinello of, there are four basic elements in a good sales plan:    

New business acquisition strategies New business acquisition tactics Existing business growth strategies Existing business growth tactics

For these and other tips and strategies, log on to the following sites: www.


July/August 2007

specifically, do you want to accomplish this year in your job? I recommend no more than five specific sales goals. Typically, one of these goals describes the total volume of sales dollars you want to create; another may describe the number of new customers you want to acquire; yet another may relate to the number of high potential customers with whom you want to increase your business. Regardless of what your goals are, an annual, written, specific set of goals is the beginning of a sales plan. At the same time, it’s wise to give some thought, and to express that thought on paper, as to your basic strategy to accomplish those goals. If you are going to acquire 20 new customers, for example, exactly what are you going to do in order to accom-

tomers should you invest your time? That priority often takes the form of a methodical and objective ranking into categories — typically A, B, and C — based on potential. The sales plan then describes your plan for coverage of the A’s and B’s.  You should address the CTM opportunities, regardless of where they occur. CTM stands for Closest to the Money. Analyze and prioritize your efforts related to those opportunities within your territory that are closest to the money.

Don’t think that you can

keep all this in your head, and skip the discipline of writing it down. plish that annual goal? This annual exercise is the first part of a good sales plan. Next, you should develop a more detailed plan every month. Produce a one or two page document which contains your specific commitments to the most effective actions. Once again, you are required to analyze and prioritize your efforts in regards to a number of issues.  First, determine your monthly objectives: What do you want to accomplish relative to the annual goals that you set? If you said you wanted to sell $2 million worth of your goods this year, how much do you have to sell this month? Each of your annual goals should have a monthly component.  Next, you should address your prospects and customers. In order of priority, in which prospects and cusJuly/August 2007 



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...sales is a process, consisting

of a series of steps that the buyer and seller take to come to a good decision. Your planned outcomes should be narrow and specific. What are you going to do to bring each of them to fruition? Specify each, the dollar amount of the opportunity, and what your actions should be. Your company may have certain key product or product lines that it wants to emphasize. If so, you’ll need to analyze and prioritize your efforts in regards to those product lines. What will you do this month to increase sales of those product lines? What specific actions will you take, in which specific accounts?  Finally, what will you do this month to improve yourself? What classes or seminars will you attend? What books will you read? To which CDs will you listen? Note that all of this addresses not every action you will take, but rather the most effective actions. You can note these things on a page or two. Don’t think that you can keep all this in your head, and skip the discipline of writing it down. Writing each specific action and strategy down, whether it’s on a yellow pad or a computer document, forces precise thinking. The written word also commits you to a degree much deeper than if you keep the idea locked in your head. After you have completed this monthly sales plan, it’s time to schedule your time. Lay out a plan for each day for the next 30 days. Where will you plan to be, and who will you plan to see? Reflect first your priorities from your monthly plan. Then fill in the non-priority calls. You and I both know that your days will rarely go according to plan. However, without a plan, you will have totally given up the ability to control and manage your time. By having a plan you have something to fall back on, something to refer to, some benchmark by which to measure the constant and urgent demands on your time. So, there is an annual component to your sales plan, as well as a monthly disci68


July/August 2007

pline. But you are not finished yet. You need to reorganize and recommit to your monthly time and territory plan each week. Adjust your plan based on what actually happened the previous week. For example, if you didn’t get to see an A account that you had planned on seeing, can you see them this week instead? Make your adjustments each week. Finally, you need to plan each sales call. What do you want to accomplish in each call? What do you need to prepare in order to accomplish it?

Again, you’ll be more focused and more committed if you write down a specific outcome that you would like to achieve in each sales call. Keep in mind that sales is a process, consisting of a series of steps that the buyer and seller take to come to a good decision. Your planned outcomes should be narrow and specific. Something like: “Acquire the information I need in order to structure a proposal,” instead of “Sell this account.” Discipline and forethought will pay off The creation of a sales plan, as you can see, is not a simple, onetime event. Rather, it is a discipline that involves a commitment of time and thoughtfulness at specific intervals in the year. It is also not just an administrative requirement, but a powerful tool that enables a professional salesperson to consistently make good decisions about the most important question he/she faces: Where to go, and what to do? July/August 2007 


How to differentiate anything — including your products You will always command a higher price if your product is better than your competitor's product. The first step to becoming better is being different. This is easy to say and hard to do. If you believe any of your products are commodities you probably don't understand the last sentence. Products don’t turn themselves into commodities; salespeople do it. If you truly believe in the concept of differentiation, there are simply no commodities on this planet. You have it all wrong if you believe your customers buy your products because they believe your products are unique in some ways. What really happens is your customers and prospects are attracted to your products because you (The seller) believe your products are unique. It starts and ends with you. Never forget that. During my corporate sales training programs and the annual boot camps I conduct, I always make a point of saying this, “If I were selling single ply toilet tissue, I could differentiate mine from the competition.” I was in Park City, UT last year doing a sales training assignment at a combo ski/golf resort. And what do I see sitting on a shelf in the bathroom, but a roll of toilet tissue. Not an ordinary roll, mind you, a differentiated roll of single-ply toilet tissue. It was wrapped in dark brown paper and had the words "Emergency Backup" prominently displayed. All tissue paper is wrapped, but the paper in my room was wrapped in differentiation and no doubt presented to the buyer as a better alternative to his current product. Your product just needs to be a little different to be considered better. The list of what can be differentiated is endless. Since we all have time for what’s endless, here's a short list to get you headed in the right direction.

You can differentiate:  how you make appointments.

 how you confirm appointments.  how you begin a sales call.  how you end a sales call.

 how you ask sales questions.

 how you present your products.

 how you package your proposals.

 how you show your appreciation to your customers.  how you acquire and apply new sales skills.

 everything about you, your products, and your company. And if you don’t get this concept, you're doomed to sell on price. Logically, when someone is comparing your price, it’s usually a good indication they don't see any other comparisons. Everything looks similar, so we may as well talk about price. And by now you realize that the more you talk about price, the lower it gets. Offer your prospects and customers more and they’ll gladly pay more. It's been said (and I don't recall who said it), “Profitability is the applause of a happy customer.” If profitability is the applause of a happy customer you should be raising your prices, especially if your customers are happy. If profitability is the applause of a happy customer you should be raising your prices, especially if you’re making your customers happy. The author, Jim Meisenheimer, is the former VP of Sales and Marketing for Baxter International and is the creator of No-Brainer Sales Training. His sales techniques and selling skills focus on practical ideas that get immediate results. Contact him at (800) 266-1268 or e-mail: 69

The basics of patents — your questions answered  You’ve come up with a great invention — or, at least, have an idea

for one. How do you protect your work?

By Brian R. Rayve, Esq. Are you confused about what a patent

is and whether or not you should get one? This is a primer for beginning inventors that answers your most commonly asked questions.

What is a patent?


A patent is a form of “intellectual property” which rewards persons whom invent a new and non-obvious:

 process or method;  machine;

 article of manufacture; or  composition of matter.

In return for completely disclosing the invention including how to practice the invention, a “legal monopoly” 70

on the invention is granted to the inventor(s) for a specific period of time. That legal monopoly is the right for the inventor(s) to exclude other persons and businesses from:

 making;  using;

 offering for sale or selling; or importing;  the invention in the U.S.

2What is “patent pending”?

Once a patent application is prepared and filed and prior to issuance of a patent, the invention can be marked “patent pending” or “patent applied for.” While these have no legal significance and grant the inventor(s) no legal rights, the designation tends to

For your information The United States Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) has its own website where it stores a database of all U.S. patents and trademarks.

 If your invention is not yet on the

list, then you can submit an application for a patent addressed to the Director of the US PTO, which includes a written document of the specification of the invention and a signed declaration.

 The written document will usually

list down the attributes of the invention that sets apart from other related inventions that have been patented already, and the claims of the patent (why the invention is patentable).

 A drawing of the invention (whenever applicable) is also needed. It can be a simple sketch or a set of formal drawings showing the invention’s parts and/or aspects. For more information about these documents, log on to: general/index.html#app


July/August 2007

The inventor(s) should be

careful to maintain their invention secret until the advice of a competent patent attorney or patent agent is sought.

discourage other persons or businesses from copying the invention since a patent might issue on the invention granting the legal monopoly to the inventor(s).

3Are there different types of patents? There are two types of patents that are typically of interest to inventors, “design patents” and “utility patents”. A design patent protects the “aesthetics” or the “appearance” of the invention and is a much more limited legal monopoly than utility patents which protect the “function” of the invention. Therefore, utility patents are desirable over design patents where possible, though an invention can be protected by both design and utility patents.

6Should I keep my invention secret?

The inventor(s) should be careful to maintain their invention’s secrecy until the advice of a competent licensed patent attorney or patent agent is sought. That is because many foreign countries in which the inventor(s)might decide to seek patent protection there is an “absolute novelty” requirement. This means that if the invention is “publicly disclosed” (i.e. disclosed to people in a non-confidential manner) prior to the “effective filing date” in that country, then the validity of any patent which would potentially issue on the invention in that country could be challenged later.

Many countries are members of the “International Treaty,” also called the “Paris Convention.” These countries allow inventor(s) to claim “foreign priority” based on the filing date of the first filed patent application in a member country, provided a patent application is filed in the member country within 1 year of such first filed patent application (within 6 months for design patent applications).

is the “International 7“ParisWhat Treaty”, also called the Convention”?

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How long do patents provide legal protection for the inventor?


The period of time for which the legal monopoly is granted for a utility patent is 20 years from the filing date of a utility patent application, however, the legal rights do not begin until the patent issues. The period of time for which the legal monopoly is granted for a design patent is 14 years from the issue date.

5What are “maintenance fees”?

Utility patents require the payment of maintenance fees 3.5, 7.5, and 11.5 years following issuance to maintain the patent in force. Design patents require no maintenance fees to maintain the patent in force.

July/August 2007 



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The United States is a member of the International Convention so as to grant such priority based on a foreign patent application.

(e.g. a sales brochure, catalog, or a web site).

there time limits in which to file 8PatentArea patent application at the U.S. Office? The inventor(s) MUST file a United States Patent Application within 1 year (if patent protection is desired in the United States) of the earlier of:

 making an offer to sell the invention (even if the offer is not accepted and sometimes even when the invention is not yet manufactured or otherwise available);

 use of the invention in public (e.g. using the invention at work or in public on the street corner); or

 or putting the invention in a printed publication which is circulated

These are called “statutory bars� and if the year period expires without filing the United States Patent Application, the inventor(s) are not permitted to file a patent application in the United States. Foreign priority (discussed above) or the priority of a provisional patent application (discussed below) can be used to predate the expiration of the 1 year period if applicable.

is a “provisional patent appli9What cation�? A provisional patent application can be filed in the United States which

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provides a disclosure (description) of the invention, but which does not have the formal requirements of a utility patent application. Priority can be claimed for a utility patent application (but not a design patent application) and foreign patent applications in countries which are members of the International Convention if filed within 1 year of the filing date of the provisional patent application. The bottom line, timely consult a competent â&#x20AC;&#x153;patent attorneyâ&#x20AC;? or â&#x20AC;&#x153;patent agentâ&#x20AC;? to discuss the details of protecting your invention! About the author Brian R. Rayve, founder of has over 27 years of combined experience in the product design, development, and the legal field. His background in product design and development includes such diverse industries as arc welding equipment, aerospace, offroad earth moving vehicles, medical equipment, and soft drink bottling equipment. He is now offering â&#x20AC;&#x201D; for a limited time â&#x20AC;&#x201D; filing a Provisional Patent Application for only $147 (plus the $100 government filing fee and $9.97 shipping and handling). For more information, go to file_a_provisional_patent_application.html Fabricator 

July/August 2007

NEF donation form here

July/August 2007 



NOMMA Education Foundation In partnership with the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association

Early registration is encouraged - space is limited

NEF Fall Continuing Education Series Basic Power Hammer Class • Basic Blacksmithing Workshop Course Descriptions Basic Power Hammer Class

Basic Blacksmithing Workshop

September 28–30, 2007 • Mooresville, NC

November 17–18, 2007 • Memphis, TN

Instructor: Dean Curfman, Big Blu Hammer. Dean has 30 years of business experience, 28 years as an artist blacksmith, and 10 years experience as developer, manufacturer, and marketer of the Big Blu Hammer. Currently Dean operates a fully equipped, well organized artist blacksmith business that designs, produces, and installs railings, gates, and sculptures of unique styles.

Instructor: Jim Wallace, The Metal Museum. Jim Wallace, Director of the Metal Museum is a master craftsman. This is a special opportunity for attendees to spend two days with Jim and learn the basics from the master. Classes take place on The Metal Museum grounds.

Lecture and demonstration includes:  Freehand forging using the power hammer without other tooling.  The importance of power hammer forging for the custom railing industry.  How to forge custom components used in the railing industry. The main emphasis is to teach you how to produce a quality product, to forge faster/more efficiently, and develop a satisfied clientele. Fee: $600 members/$800 nonmembers – limited to 8 participants. Fee includes:  Instruction, use of equipment, supplies for class.  Meals: Continental breakfast 9/28, 9/29, 9/30 Lunch 9/28, 9/29 Dinner 9/28, 9/29

Lectures and demos cover:  Basic forge practice interspersed with short lectures and demonstrations covering forging procedures for nonferrous metals, and the evolution of design styles.  Discussion of history of metals with emphasis on iron and important technologies throughout the ages.  Methods of forming metals and their applications and limitations.  Hand tooling for forging operations including demonstration of heat sources.  Basic forging operations of drawing tapers, bending (or scrolling), punching and cutting.  Traditional fabrication techniques (riveting, collaring, mortise, and tennon).  Silver soldering, forge brazing, and pewtersmithing.  Finishing options: burnt oil, wax, chemical blueing and paint.  Intro to power hammer and sand casting. Fee: $500 members/$700 nonmembers – limited to 5 participants. Fee includes:  Instruction, use of forge, supplies for class.  Meals: Lunch 11/17, 11/18

Be sure and register early since these classes will fill up quickly. Classes are sponsored by the NOMMA Education Foundation (NEF) in conjunction with the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association, 1535 Pennsylvania Ave., McDonough, GA 30253. For questions call: 888-516-8585, ext. 101 • Fax: 770-288-2006 • Email: 74


July/August 2007

Registration Form

NEF Fall Continuing Education Series Basic Power Hammer Class • Basic Blacksmithing Workshop

September 28–30, 2007 – Basic Power Hammer Class Location: Mooresville, NC Instructor: Dean Curfman, Big Blu Hammer Fee: $600 NOMMA member, $800 nonmember – limited to 8 participants Fee includes: Instruction, use of hammers, supplies for class, meals – Continental Breakfast - 9/28, 9/29, 9/30; Lunch - 9/28, 9/29; Dinner - 9/28, 9/29 Refunds for cancellations cannot be given after September 14, 2007. November 17–18, 2007 – Basic Blacksmithing Workshop Location: The Metal Museum – Memphis, TN Instructor: Jim Wallace, The Metal Museum Fee: $500 NOMMA member, $700 nonmember – limited to 5 participants Fee includes: Instruction, use of forge, supplies for class, meals – Lunch - Saturday, Sunday Refunds for cancellations cannot be given after November 5, 2007.

Visit for additional information.

Please register me for the following:  Basic Power Hammer  Basic Blacksmithing Contact ____________________________________________________________________________ Company __________________________________________________________________________ Address ___________________________________________________________________________ City _______________________________________ State __________ Zip _____________________ Phone _____________________ Fax ______________________Email _________________________ Method of payment:  Enclosed is a check payable to the NOMMA Education Foundation.  Please charge my:  AMEX

 Discover  MC  VISA

Card #______________________________________________________ Exp ___________________ Signature ____________________________Print Name_____________________________________ Events sponsored by the NOMMA Education Foundation (NEF) in conjunction with the National Ornamental Metals Association (NOMMA) 1535 Pennsylvania Ave., McDonough, GA 30253 Fax completed form to 770-288-2006 or email to

For your information

July/August 2007  Fabricator

Contact: NOMMA / NEF 1535 Pennsylvania Ave. McDonough, GA 30253 Ph: (888) 516-8585 Fax: (770) 288-2006 Web: Email:

METALfab 2008 Date & Location: Celebrate NOMMA’s 50th anniversary during METALfab 2008. The event takes place April 1–5, 2008 in Memphis, TN. Details for the next convention are available online. Visit:


New NOMMA members

NOMMA Nationwide Supplier Members

All Cities Steel Corp.* Riverside, CA Martin Stanley; Local

A Cut Above Distributing (800) 444-2999

Custom Orn. Iron Works Ltd. (866) 464-4766

Alloy Casting Co. Inc. (972) 286-2368

D.J.A. Imports Ltd. (888) 933-5993

As of June 22, 2007. Asterisk denotes returning members.

Al’s Ornamental Iron Waite Park, MN Al Haus; Fabricator

American Iron Inc.* St. Charles, MO Robert Lawrence; Fabricator

Armadillo Metalworks Inc. Passaic, NJ Philippe Fiers; Fabricator Brian’s Welding San Jose, CA Brian Padilla; Fabricator Country Metals Salem, NJ John Allen; Fabricator

Eric Cuper Artist Blacksmith Easton, PA Eric Cuper; Fabricator

Falling Hammer Productions LLC Oakville, CT Peter Thatcher Swarz-Burt; Fabricator Lester E. Leedom Welding* Newtown, PA Lester Leedom; Fabricator

M&N Industries Inc. dba Crossroads Iron Works* Gordonsville, VA Michael W. Dailey; Fabricator Metal Shield Margate, FL Haim Michaeli; Fabricator

NE&WS Metal Works Inc.* Maspeth, NY Jack Medlarz; Fabricator

Old Montana Ironworks LLC Kalispell, MT Joe Beasley; Fabricator Patton Sales Corp. Ontario, CA Jacob Zeidman; Local Supplier Rollins Metalworks* Middletown, DE Bob Rollins; Local

Schulte Studios Sugar Grove, IL Kai Schulte; Fabricator

Triple-S Chemical Products* Los Angeles, CA Simon Motamed; Nationwide

Allen Architectural Metals Inc. (800) 204-3858 American Punch Co. (216) 731-4501

American Stair Corp. (800) 872-7824

Ameristar Fence Products (918) 835-0898 Apollo Gate Operators (210) 545-2900

Architectural Iron Designs Inc. (908) 757-2323

Argent Ornamental Iron & Steel (678) 377-6788 Atlas Metal Sales (800) 662-0143

Auciello Iron Works Inc. (978) 568-8382

Bavarian Iron Works Co. (800) 522-4766 Big Blu Hammer Mfg. (828) 437-5348

Blum & Co. Inc., Julius (800) 526-6293 Builders Fence Co. Inc. (800) 767-0367 Byan Systems Inc. (800) 223-2926

The Cable Connection (800) 851-2961 Carell Corp. (251) 937-0948

Carl Stahl DecorCable Innovations (800) 444-6271 Classic Iron Supply (800) 367-2639

Cleveland Steel Tool Co. (800) 446-4402 CML USA Inc. (563) 391-7700

Colorado Waterjet Company (866) 532-5404 CompLex Industries Inc. (901) 547-1198

Crescent City Iron Supply Inc. (800) 535-9842

D & D Technologies (USA) Inc. (714) 677-1300 DAC Industries Inc. (616) 235-0140

Dashmesh Ornamentals 011911612502574 Decorative Iron (888) 380-9278

Decorative Ironworks Inc. (817) 236-6151 DKS, DoorKing Systems (800) 826-7493

Donaldson Co., Robert J. (856) 629-2737

Eagle Bending Machines Inc. (251) 937-0947 Eastern Metal Supply (800) 343-8154

Eastern Ornamental Supply Inc. (800) 590-7111

Elegant Aluminum Products Inc. (800) 546-3362 Encon Electronics (800) 782-5598

Euro Forgings Inc. (905) 265-1093 EURO-FER SRL. 011390445440033 FabCad.Inc (800) 255-9032

FabTrol Systems Inc. (541) 485-4719

Fatih Profil San. Tic. AS 011902582691664

Feeney Architectural Products, CableRail™ (800) 888-2418 Geo. Bezdan Sales Ltd. (604) 299-5264

Gerhard Glaser GmbH & Co. 011496078937137 Glasswerks LA Inc. (323) 789-7800

Grande Forge (Asia) Sdn Bhd 0116562359893 The G-S Co. (410) 284-9549

NOMMA Nationwide Supplier Members GTO Inc. (800) 543-4283 Hartford Standard Co. Inc. (270) 298-3227 Hayn Enterprises LLC (860) 257-0680 Hebo/Stratford Gate Systems Inc. (503) 722-7700 Hendrick Mfg., Perforated Metals Div. (570) 282-1010 House of Forgings (281) 443-4848 Illinois Engineered Products Inc. (312) 850-3710 Indiana Gratings Inc. (800) 634-1988 Industrial Coverage Corp. (631) 736-7500 Industrial Metal Supply Co. (818) 729-3333 Innovative Hinge Products Inc. (817) 598-4846 Interstate Mfg. Associates Inc. (800) 667-9101 The Iron Shop (800) 523-7427

ITW Industrial Finishing (630) 237-5169 ITW Ransburg (419) 470-2000 Jansen Ornamental Supply Co. Inc. (800) 4-JANSEN C. Sherman Johnson Co. Inc. (860) 873-8697 Justin R.P.G. Corp. (310) 532-3441 King Architectural Metals (800) 542-2379 King of the Ring (305) 819-2256 Laser Precision Cutting (828) 658-0644 C.R. Laurence Co. Inc. (800) 421-6144 Lavi Industries (800) 624-6225 Lawler Foundry Corp. (800) 624-9512 Lewis Brass & Copper Co. Inc. (718) 894-1442 Liberty Brass Turning Co. (718) 784-2911

Logical Decisions Inc. (800) 676-5537 Mac Metals Inc. (800) 631-9510 Marks U.S.A. (631) 225-5400 Master Halco (714) 385-0091 MB Software Solutions LLC (717) 350-2759 McKey Perforating (262) 786-2700 Metalform - Bulgaria (703) 516-9756 Mittler Bros. Machine & Tool (800) 467-2464 Frank Morrow Co. (401) 941-3900 Multi Sales Inc. (800) 421-3575 Mylen Stairs Inc. (914) 739-8486 New Metals Inc. (956) 729-1184 Ohio Gratings Inc. (330) 477-6707 Overseas Supply Inc. (281) 776-9885 Paxton & Thau Artistic Supply (205) 290-2790 Precision Glass Bending Corp. (800) 543-8796 Procounsel (214) 741-3014 RedPup LLC (928) 422-1000 Regency Railings Inc. (214) 742-9408 Riata Mfg. (915) 533-9929 Rik-Fer USA (305) 406-1577 Robertson Grating Products Inc. (877) 638-6365 Robinson Iron Corp. (800) 824-2157 Rockite, Div. of Hartline Products Co. Inc. (216) 291-2303 Rogers Mfg. Inc. (940) 325-7806

L.E. Sauer Machine Co. (636) 225-5358 Scotchman Industries Inc. (605) 859-2542 Sculpt Nouveau (760) 432-8242 SECO South (888) 535-SECO Sharpe Products (800) 879-4418 Stairways Inc. (713) 680-3110 Steel Masters Inc. (602) 243-5245 Stephens Pipe and Steel LLC (800) 451-2612 Striker Tool Co. (USA) Inc. (866) 290-1263 Sumter Coatings Inc. (888) 471-3400 Taco Metals (800) 743-3803 Taurin Group USA (909) 476-8007 Tennessee Fabricating Co. (901) 725-1548 Texas Metal Industries (972) 427-9999 Transpacific Industrial Supply Inc. (909) 581-3058 Triple-S Chemical Products (800) 862-5958 Tri-State Shearing & Bending (718) 485-2200 Universal Entry Systems Inc. (800) 837-4283 Universal Mfg. Co. Inc. (901) 458-5881 Valley Bronze of Oregon Inc. (541) 432-7551 Vogel Tool & Die, Div. of TES Tube Equipment Inc. (630) 562-1400 The Wagner Companies (888) 243-6914 Wasatch Steel Inc. (888) 496-4463 West Tennessee Ornamental Door (901) 346-0662 Wrought Iron Concepts Inc. (877) 370-8000

What’ s Hot Inside Biz Briefs . . . . . . . . . . .78 Chapter News . . . . . . .80 Events . . . . . . . . . . . . .83 People . . . . . . . . . . . . .85

Literature . . . . . . . . . . .87 New Products . . . . . . .88 Classifieds . . . . . . . . . .92

I-Codes adopted in all 50 states The International Code Council (ICC) recently announced that International Codes (I-Codes) have been adopted, in some form, in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. "ICC is proud to have achieved its original mission of providing a single set of codes for use across the country," says International Code Council President Wally Bailey. "I-Code adoptions in all 50 states make building design, construction and code enforcement easier for the entire building industry. Consumers are the big winners. The economic benefits of building to the latest codes can include improved safety, reduced maintenance costs, energy savings and lower insurance premiums." Contact: International Code Council; Ph: (888) ICC-SAFE; Web:

LB Steel LLC assumes ownership of Topeka Metal Specialties LB Steel LLC, headquartered in Chicago, IL, has assumed ownership of Topeka Metal Specialties Inc. LB Steel is a market leader in both non-prime strip mill plate and steel counterweights with state-of-the-art engineering, processing, fabrication and finishing services. The firm has a 450,000 square foot plant and inventory of more than 200,000 tons of steel plate in Harvey, IL. Robert Richards, vice president of sales & marketing of LB Steel LLC said the Topeka facility will retain the Topeka Metal Specialties name and become a division of LB Steel Inc. The company will retain its current 70 employees and gradually add 130 positions over the next year or two, for a total of 200 jobs. "The Gerdes family has supported their employees, the community, and their clients for many years," Mike Goich, president of LB Steel, says. "LB Steel looks forward to continuing the tradition of customer service and quality products in the years to come. We are pleased to be able to assume ownership of the company at a time when we are ready for growth. I know the Topeka employees will be able to help us grow and thrive in this marketplace." Contact: LB Steel, Ph: (708) 331-2600; Web: 78

Biz Briefs

R&F Metals Inc. certified by National Housing Quality Program R&F Metals, Inc. of Clinton, MD, is the first railing contractor in the state of Maryland to be certified through the NAHB Research Center’s prestigious National Housing Quality (NHQ) Certified Trade Contractor Program. The NAHB Research Center, a wholly owned subsidiary of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), offers the certification program and provides independent, third-party evaluations of participating contractors. Achieving the first certification in the railings trade in Maryland is a laudable accomplishment, as it demonstrates that R&F Metals takes quality assurance and workmanship very seriously. R & F Metals is also the first NOMMA member in the country to become a NHQ Certified Trade Contractor. “NHQ Certified Trade Contractors are truly committed to quality, and are leaders in their fields,” says Research Center president Michael Luzier. “Contractors involved in the program have noted that they have experienced a reduction in callbacks, and that it has increased their job satisfaction and helped them take more pride in their work. Builders are wise to hire contractors participating in a program that is evaluated by a name they trust.” Certified Trade Contractor Program focuses the building industry on doing things right the first time. To achieve certification, R&F Metals was required to develop, document, implement, and maintain a quality management system that enables the company to consistently meet code and regulatory requirements, builder specifications, and homeowner expectations. Roger Flynn, Sr. president of R & F Metals says, “We had been talking about doing this kind of total evaluation of our operation for years and the certification process finally provided the impetus to actually do it, and the results far exceeded our expectations. The level of involvement from all of our employees during the certification process was extraordinary. There was no part of our business that was not changed for the better as a result of the self-evaluation and our employees feel more empowered than ever. They have a clearer understanding of our company goals, and their everyday actions are guided by the bigger picture – our mission and vision. The process was about much more than quality – it was about continually building a better business.” After achieving the initial certification, the company must pass a rigorous re-certification audit and sustain its certification status through annual audits. For more information on the National Housing Quality Certified Trade Contractor program, visit the NAHB Research Center online at Fabricator 

July/August 2007

What’ s Hot

Biz Briefs

ASA supports due process for California subcontractors The American Subcontractors Association (ASA) has asked the California Supreme Court to uphold the right of construction subcontractors that have worked on state projects to the due process of the law. “Subcontractors everywhere in this country depend on our courts to recognize the fundamental right of due process,” says 2006-07 ASA President Stephen Rohrbach, CPC, president of F. A. Rohrbach Inc., Allentown, PA. “ASA believes California's subcontractors should be entitled to their full rights and any erosion of those rights sets a dangerous precedent.” In order to prevent illegal substitution of a listed subcontractor, the subcontractor must be given notice in writing and an opportunity to object to removal from the project in an administrative hearing. Any substitution or removal of the subcontractor is the decision of the awarding authority and “shall be based on the facts contained in the declarations submitted” during such a hearing. ASA argues that California subcontractors are entitled to a full court hearing of contractual issues, which was denied in this case. ASA also argues that the lower court decision ignores the fact that substitution hearings are limited in nature, is in conflict with a previous court decision, and demonstrates the need for the Supreme Court to clarify subcontractor due process rights. For more information, log on to and click on “Subcontractor Advocacy.”

July/August 2007 


Dawes moves to new location Dawes Rigging & Crane Rental Inc. has moved to a new 12acre facility in Eau Claire, WI, from their former location in Chippewa Falls. The new, larger facility and location will allow Dawes to better fill customers’ rental needs, from cranes— rough terrain, crawler, operated hydraulic truck, boom trucks, hi-reach, carrydeck, and static and self-erecting towers—to aerials and material handlers such as scissor lifts, telescopic booms, articulating booms, and rough terrain forklifts. Dawes also offers new and used equipment sales and service, including maintenance packages, complete rebuilds, annual inspections, forklift and aerial training, and parts. Contact: Dawes, Ph: (800) 943-2277; Web:

BGL sells Western Pneumatic Tube Western Pneumatic Tube (WPT) Company has been sold to Tinicum Capital Partners II LP. WPT, based in Kirkland, WA, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of large diameter, light wall welded tubing products. During its 50-plus year history, WPT became a key supplier of welded tubes to manufacturers such as General Electric, Boeing, Airbus, and Pratt Whitney.


What’s Hot

Chapter News

Gulf Coast group to hold October meeting in Alabama The next meeting of the Gulf Coast NOMMA Network is Saturday, October 6, 9 a.m., at The Drapery Makery and Canvas Workshop, 16821 State Highway 181, Fairhope, AL 36532 (phone 251-990-8789). Fairhope is located on the beautiful Eastern Shore of Mobile Bay, and is just minutes away from Gulf Shores/Orange Beach. The program will feature demos of welding and cutting equipment, and a shrimp boil lunch. The Drapery Makery is an interesting shop that started in the ornamental business by making curtain rods and drapery hardware, and then moved into railings, furniture, and gates. On May 19, the group held their spring meeting at Lawler Foundry in Birmingham, AL. James Minter Jr., chair of the NOMMA Education Foundation, provided an update on NOMMA’s 50th anniversary convention, member networking benefits, and the association’s efforts to respond to code changes that could severely restrict guard and rail designs. Meeting participants toured the Lawler facility, which included the castings and forgings showroom and Lawler’s warehouse. Craftsmen from Allen Ironworks and Custom Forgings of Birmingham hosted a demonstration of heat abrasion transfer and repoussé, a metalworking technique in which metal is shaped by hammering from the reverse side. Other highlights of the day included lunch at Birmingham’s famed Dreamland Restaurant and a tour of Vulcan Park and Museum.

TOP: Attendees at the May 19 Gulf Coast meeting watch a repoussé demonstration. BOTTOM: During the business meeting, James Minter Jr. briefed everyone on NOMMA and NEF activities, including the ongoing industry research project.


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Fabricator  July/August 2007

What’s Hot

Chapter News

Upper Midwest Chapter holds a meeting and social in Grand Rapids, MI Demos for the day covered aluminum forging and repoussé.

Attendees socialize prior to the business meeting.

July/August 2007  Fabricator

RIGHT: Attendees gather for a demo. The daylong event attracted a large turnout of members and guests.

The Upper Midwest Chapter held their May 5 meeting at Christopher Metal Fabricating in Grand Rapids, MI. Demos for the day covered aluminum forging and repoussé. Other events included a shop tour, business meeting, delicious lunch, and roundtable discussions. In the evening, attendees participated in an optional evening dinner, which served as a fundraiser for the NOMMA Education Foundation. After dinner, everyone was treated to a performance of “The Judy Show,” a musical and comedy performance that featured a female impersonator. The talented actor gave stunning renditions of Judy Garland, Pearl Bailey, Bette Davis, and other famous celebrities. The chapter’s next meeting is tentatively planned for September or October, likely in the Chicago area.

A female impersonator provided lively entertainment during the evening social.


What’s Hot

Chapter News

SoCal Chapter meets at King Architectural Members of the SoCal Chapter attracted extra publicity for their group in April by holding their meeting in conjunction with a “parking lot sale” at King Architectural Metals. During the daylong event, chapter members held a business meeting and spent time visiting the various vendors. The group also passed out NOMMA membership brochures.

Chapter Contacts Florida Chapter

President: Pedro Vasquez Discount Ornamental Iron Ph: (813) 248-3348 Gulf Coast NOMMA Network

President: James Minter Jr. Imagine Ironworks Ph: (601) 833-3000 Northeast Chapter At their April meeting, the SoCal Chapter presented a certificate to King Architectural as a “thank you” for hosting the meeting.

Fla. Chapter to meets July 7 in Ft. Myers The Florida Chapter helder their summer meeting on Saturday, July 7 at The Valentines shop in Ft. Myers. Events for the day included a business meeting, shop tour, spiral stair presentation, and pig roast. Mini demos included fall safety protection, Hilti measuring and fastening products, a bender and radial saw demo, and a presentation by Texas Metal Indus-

tries. The Valentines is a full-service fabrication shop located in a 30,000 square foot facility. The firm, which employes 25 welders, fabricates everything from copper hoods to balcony railings. The chapter typically meets quarterly. For information on upcoming meetings, contact chapter president Pedro Vasquez of Discount Ornamental Iron at (813) 248-3348.

President: Keith Majka Majka Railing Co. Inc. Ph: (973) 247-7603 Southern California Chapter

President: Sami Dahdal Sam’s Iron Works Ph: (818) 982-5343 Upper Midwest Chapter

President: Tina Tennikait Superior Fence & Orn. Iron Ph: (618) 259-4184 For more chapter info, see the NOMMA website.


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Fabricator  July/August 2007


Two-day AutoCad seminar FabCad will conduct a two-day AutoCad seminar in San Jose, California September 12 & 13, 2007. The seminar is custom designed for the ornamental fabricating industry with 30-day free use of software for each seminar participant. Day one will provide a foundation in the basics of AutoCad 2D drawing and editing July/August 2007 


Blacksmithing and horseshoeing classes


Pieh Tools offers complimentary semi-annual blacksmith and horseshoeing as an opportunity to learn from the masters. The fall/winter schedule for blacksmithing classes include: Sept 14-16 Oct 26-28 Nov 16-18 Dec 7-9 Pieh Tool Company is located in Arizona's Yavapai County, minutes from Sedona. Contact: Pieh Tool, Ph: (888) 7434866; Web:


The Ironbridge Gorge Museums, Shropshire, United Kingdom, will be hosting an international exhibition and hands-on conference for artist blacksmiths this summer. As part of the event, a 7.5 meter high steel sculpture will be created on the theme of “friendship” as perceived by master smiths from a diverse range of communities and cultures across the globe. The Playing with Fire exhibition will be held July 27-August 12 at Blists Hill Victorian Town to challenge perceptions about blacksmithing and celebrate the diverse range of products produced by contemporary artist blacksmiths. Displays will provide a unique window into the world of today’s artist blacksmith with preparatory sketches, design drawings and photographs of work in progress, showcased with examples of finished metalwork, some of which will be for sale. The first three days of the exhibition will take place during the international blacksmithing conference, Friendship Through Iron, organized by the British Artist Blacksmiths Association (BABA). About 300 smiths from different countries and cultures around the world are expected to attend. Contact: Ironbridge Tourist Information Centre, Ph: 011 01952 884 391; Web: For further information about the Friendship Through Iron event visit

commands. Day two provides experienced AutoCad users and first day participants more advanced applications including curved stairs, drawings in multiple scales, demo drawings, and more. Contact: FabCad, Ph: (800) 2559032; Web:


International conference for blacksmiths

Upcoming Events Septemer 8-9, 15-16, 2007 22nd Autumn Crafts Festival

This annual event will be held at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York City. Craft artists may apply for exhibit space for one or both weekends. Work must be original, handcrafted, and expertly executed. Contact: American Concern for Artistry and Craftsmanship; Ph: (973) 746-0091 Web:

October 12-13, 2007 Florida Artist Blacksmith (FABA) Conference

The Florida Artist Blacksmith Association will hold a conference in Barberville, FL. Contact: Florida Artist Blacksmith Association, Web:

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What’ s Hot

EMMA to hold fall conference

FMA offers management skills training The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, Intl. (FMA), is offering two new programs for preparing leaders of small to mid-sized companies to meet the challenges of today’s manufacturing environment. The programs are offered backto-back for convenient attendance at one or both.


EMMA members look forward to their upcoming conference in Chicago.

The Expanded Metal Manufacturers Association (EMMA) will hold its Fall Conference at The Radisson Hotel, Chicago, IL, November 3-5, 2007. EMMA’s purpose is to promote the uses of expanded metal products with building professionals through publication of technical information, new product development and capabilities. EMMA also provides a forum for the exchange of information on the expanded metal industry. EMMA is a division of The National Association of Architectural Metal Manufacturers (NAAMM), which represents manufacturers of a wide range of metal products used chiefly in commercial and industrial building and construction. Contact: EMMA; Ph: (630) 942-6591; Web:

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 Strategic Planning for the Job Shop: Participants will learn how to effectively address the challenges specific to the manufacturing environment, formulate goals, and establish strategic plans in this interactive workshop designed for all levels of management. June 26, 2007 – NIU-Rockford, Rockford, IL Aug. 23, 2007 – Tooling & Manufacturing Association, Park Ridge (Chicago), IL Contact FMA, Ph: (888) 394-4362; Web:

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 Managerial Success for the Emerging Team Leader: This one-day interactive seminar focuses on the changes employees encounter in their transition to manager and teaches team-building skills. June 25, 2007 – NIU-Rockford, Rockford, IL Aug. 22, 2007 – Tooling & Manufacturing Association, Park Ridge (Chicago), IL

The Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association (SMACNA) will hold its 64th annual convention at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, NV, October 21-25, 2007. The tabletop Product Show will take place the morning of October 23. The keynote speaker at the opening session will be Frank Abagnale, one of the world’s foremost authorities on the subjects of forgery, embezzlement, and secure documents. Contact: SMACNA; Ph: (703) 803-2980; Web: Fabricator 

July/August 2007

What’ s Hot


Begnaud named president of Bob’s Orn Jason Begnaud became President of Bob’s Ornamental Iron Studio, Kansas City, KS, on July 1, 2007. He Jason Begnaud steps into the position vacated by Bob Foust. Contact: Bob’s Ornamental Iron; Ph: (800) 459-9236; Web:

Murray joins Wagner’s industrial sales team The Wagner Companies announces that Don Murray has joined their company as an Don Murray Industrial Sales Engineer. In this position,

Murray will be responsible for developing new industrial applications from existing customers as well as the development of new industrial customers and product lines for The Wagner Companies. Murray brings sales experience from working with Rex Chain, Allis Chalmers, and Charter Steel. He most recently worked as a Sales Account Executive at Wire Tech Fabricators and holds four design patents. Contact: Wagner, Ph: (888) 2436914; Web: www.wagnercompanies. com.

MBSS announces addition of Maki MB Software Solutions, LLC has added Andrew Maki to its development team. Maki brings 15 years of manufacturing experience to the team and will assist MBSS in the future versions of FabMate and the upcoming MBSS Esti-Mate. Contact MBSS, Ph: (717) 350-2758; Web:

Setrak Agonian receives honor

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NOMMA member Setrak Agonian (International Creative Metal Inc., Woodside, NY) was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame on April 26, 2007. A cocktail reception was held in his honor at the New York Athletic Club. Congratulations, Setrak! July/August 2007 


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What’ s Hot


Indalex appoints Nash to international operations role Indalex Holding Corp. has appointed Wendell Nash to the position of Operations Manager, Indalex International. Nash will be based in North America, but will be responsible for managing the company’s offshore supply initiatives in the Indalex International business office in Nanhai, China. He will also coordinate manufacWendell Nash turing and logistics to supply North American customers with extruded aluminum components from other countries where Indalex International has supply partners. Previously, Nash was Quality Assurance Manager, Indalex International. He was instrumental in personnel training and transferring Indalex technical knowledge to Chinese extrusion partners. Nash gained international experience in the window and door sector when he was responsible for a start-up glass insulation plant in South Korea. He also worked at The Boeing Company where he had a variety of manufacturing and quality assurance roles.

Contact: Indalex, Ph: (866) 576-0146; Web: www.indalex. com

Hiebra Joins GTO Inc. Justin Hiebra has joined GTO Inc. as director of sales — Eastern United States. Based in Miami, FL, Hiebra, along with the reporting territory managers in his region, will manage the Eastern U. S., the Caribbean and Latin America areas, where he has extensive experience. Before joining GTO, Inc., Hiebra was the general busiJustin Hiebra ness development manager with Miami-based Asiauniques, Limited and international business manager for Cummins Latin America Inc. He has also served as export business and store general manager for Sears, Roebuck & Co. and as vice president of business development in North America, Latin America and the Caribbean for Belzons, Inc. Contact; GTO, Ph: at (800) 543-GATE; Web:

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July/August 2007


Book on architectural mouldings reissued “Few subjects in architecture have been given less attention during the last near century than the study of mouldings. To the adherents of the modern movement they reeked of superfluous and decadent ornament and were therefore banned. Over the decades the rationale behind the origin, use, and sequence of mouldings has eroded to less than a memory,” writes architect Richard Sammons in the foreword to this reissue of a seminal book. Now, however, with the renaissance of interest in traditional and classical architecture, C. Howard Walker’s Theory of Mouldings can once again serve as a guide. For today’s designers, Sammons’s foreward steps back and deals with first principles, while Walker’s comprehensive text treasts the history, materials, shapes, sequence, forms, and applications of mouldings. A portfolio of detail drawings and photographs of mouldings in current work make this book a unique source of inspiration for producing a rich array of ornament in architectural interiors and exteriors today. This 160-page book includes 25 black-and-white photographs and 100 line drawings. Price: $25.00 U.S. Contact: Norton Books for Architects & Designers; Ph: (212) 7904323; Web: New Trumpf tooling catalog

Weldcraft introduces full-line product catalog

Weldcraft’s new product catalog contains specifications on all of Weldcraft products as well as a variety of TIG welding tips and technical information.

The catalog features Weldcraft’s signature Crafter™, WP and Legacy™ Series torches — arranged by air- or water-cooled models — as well as the company’s specialty torches, machine held torches, and accessories. Product icons and model number keys at the front of the catalog simplify the process of identifying desired product. Contact: Weldcraft, Ph: (800) 7527620; Web:

Sheet metal welding guide

The Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association (SMACNA) has published a newly revised third edition of the “Sheet Metal Welding Guide,” reflecting the latest welding technology and methods. The publication includes updated covereage of welding processes, flux cored wire guidelines and the latest equipment. Other topics include safety procedures, controlling weld quality, estimating, and more. The book (available in both printed document and CD-ROM formats) is sold at member and nonmember prices, with discounts for architectural and engineering firms. Contact: SMACNA; Ph: (703) 8032989; Web:

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Trumpf Punch Press users can use the new and expanded 64page Mate Trumpf Tooling Catalog as a reference tool July/August 2007 

when planning their fabricating projects. Included in the new catalog is a “Product Selector” overview of each Mate tooling system with eight different ratings for each tooling system. Comparisons are made of factors such as quick set up, interchangeability, grind life, ease of use, value, and purchase price. The new catalog also includes information about punch and die maintenance, including grinding wheel specifications, feed rates for sharpening, calculating punching force, and selecting the correct die clearance. Contact: Trumpf, Ph: (800) 3284492; Web: trumpfstyle


Albany Spiral Staircase • Distinctive historic design • Modular components in 4 ft. & 5 ft. dia. • Rugged cast iron construction • Brass or steel handrail • Easy assembly • Complete catalog featuring this and other staircases 1 0 0 y e a r s b e h i n d t h e t i m e s™


New Products

What’ s Hot 50-amp mild steel consumables; new HySpeed Plasma system

Hypertherm Hypertherm’s 50-amp cutting consumables for its HyPerformance Plasma systems are designed for cutting mild steel with a thickness between 22 gauge (0.8 mm) and 5/16 (8.0 mm) of an inch. In addition to the 30, 50, and 80 amp power levels, Hypertherm also offers consumables at the 100, 130, 200, and 260 amp levels. The new 50-amp consumables are available for the HyPerformance Plasma HPR130 and HPR260 systems, as well as HyDefinition HD3070 and

HD4070 systems retrofitted with a HyPerformance Plasma torch. The HySpeed HSD 130 cuts drossfree at 5/8” (16mm) on mild steel. Production pierce capability is 1” (25mm), with maximum cutting at 1” (38mm). Product is suited for small to medium size companies, especially those cutting parts for their own manufacturing operations. Contact: Hypertherm, Ph: (800) 643-0030; Web: 50-ton Ironworker; advanced measuring systems

SCOTCHMAN® Scotchman® Industries’ 5014 CM Ironworker has heavier capacities and more features than the previous model. The new 5014 model has 50 tons of pressure and the ability to punch a 13/16” hole in 3 /4”, 11/4” in 1/2” material and up to a 2-

/4” in 1/4” with a 4” x 6” die holder. Machine also has a keyed punch ram for safe and positive alignment, adjustable stroke control, angle shear, electrical box with emergency palm button, and lock-out, tag-out accommodations. The 5014 CM features 230/460 volt 3 phase electrics and guards necessary to comply with ANSI B 11-5 standards and forklift accommodations. Contact: Scotchman, Ph: (800) 843-8844: Web:


New control device

GTO GTO’s enhanced Residential Wireless Entry Intercom (F3100MBC) works with all brands of gate operators. The system consists of two components: an exterior keypad mounted at the entry gate

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July/August 2007

New Products

What’ s Hot and a mobile interior base that can be used anywhere inside the property, similar to a cordless phone. This new version accepts up to four base units. It features two-way, wireless communication up to 500 feet and up to 1,000 feet with a remote mounted antenna. Access can be granted or denied by touching a button on the stand-alone keypad that can accept up to 25 entry codes. The system may be installed without the cost and labor involved in trenching telephone and power wires between the gate and the property. Contact: GTO, Ph: (800) 543GATE; Web: Two-in-one accessory

CML USA Ercolina This bar twisting device accessory adapts to CE40 and

July/August 2007 


CE50 angle rolls to create custom components for ornamental gates, railings, and more. The CT4/2300 (fits CE40) and the CT5/2300 (fits CE50) include tooling for bar twisting and bending small radius rings and hoops. The accessory has heavy-duty construction with over seven feet of workable table length to twist balusters up to 1-inch square. An electro-mechanical interface is provided to control rotation and repeatability. The accessory also includes selfaligning chuck and quick release tail stock system for easy material changeover. Contact: CML USA Ercolina, Ph: (563) 391-7700; Web: Stainless steel abrasives kit

Rex-Cut Rex-Cut’s new kit includes three types of specialty abrasive wheels for grinding, blending, and cutting stainless steel using a right angle grinder.

The Rex-cut® Stainless Steel Kit includes four thin-profile, 0.045” thick Alpha-Green cutoff wheels to cut pipe, rod, or tube. The kit also contains the SigmaGreen grinding wheel to remove heavy welds and a cotton-fiber blending and finishing wheel that leaves a 32 RMS or better finish. These Type 27 wheels are all 41/2” in diameter. Packaged in a plastic clamshell, Alpha-Green cut off wheel features a resinoid bonding system with 46 grit aluminum oxide abrasives. The Sigma-Green grinding wheel is made from a zirconia and ceramic grain with a proprietary bonding for chatter-free cutting action, and the cottonfiber blending wheel reveals fresh abrasives as it works. Contact: Rex-cut Products, Ph: (800) 225-8182; Web:


New Products

What’ s Hot Corrosion-resistant stainless steel flange lock nuts

Jergens Jergens’ Spinner-Grip Flange Lock Nuts are now available in 18/8 stainless steel to resist corrosion in harsh environments. Product provides a free-spinning installation that eliminates the need to wrench the nut down the bolt. In addition, Spinner-Grips lock to the base part, not the bolt threads, for better tensile strength to hold the entire fastener assembly (bolt, part, and nut), making them effective in high-vibration applications. The product is suited for diverse applications including material-handling equipment, transportation, medical equipment, industrial, maintenance, vibratory applications, and hard-to-reach fastening areas.

Spinner-Grips do not require the use of flat washers (except in slotted applications), can replace standard nuts and all types of lock nuts, and can be re-used several times. Contact: Jergens, Inc., Ph: (800) 537-4367; Web: New helmet designs

Miller Miller recently introduced two designs — Motorsports and Firestorm — to its new Performance line of autodarkening welding helmets. Both helmets are part of the new Performance Series, which replaces the previous Xli and Xlix helmet lines and adds several new features, including three arc sensors, a quick-release front cover lens holder with a rubber spatter gasket and lens controls at the bottom of the lens. Helmets also include

Miller’s Auto-On and Grind Mode features. Auto-On eliminates accidental arc flash by automatically detecting the arc even if the helmet hasn’t been used for an extended amount of time. Grind mode allows the helmet to be used as a protective shield by preventing the lens from darkening while grinding. Contact: Miller, Ph: (800) 426-4553; Web: at www.MillerWelds. X-Treme welding sleeve

Torch Wear® New protective welding features a three-layer design intended for harsh applications including carbon-arc, sub-arc, spray-arc, heavy-arc welding, pipe and heavy TIG welding, and standard MIG welding. X-Treme welding sleeves exceed Hazard Risk Category 4 Standards. One size fits all, with the

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July/August 2007

New Products

What’ s Hot sleeve designed to be worn over a shirt or jacket. Torch Wear fabric will not char, shrink or burn when exposed to heat and flame. Torch Wear heat-resistant, protective clothing was developed by celebrity welder Paul “Torch” LeSage, formerly the exclusive welder of the National Hot Rod Association for over twentyfive years. Contact: Torch Wear, Ph: (800) 479-7165; Web:

compact boxes weighing up to 95 lb., this ergonomic tube lifter provides a 100 percent duty cycle with instant attach and release. Standard features include a heavyduty vacuum pump, wire-reinforced tube, vacuum gauge, and quick-disconnects for the vacuum pad attachment. Contact: Anver Corporation, Ph: (800) 654-3500; Web: Flex Boa Pipe Sander

Vacuum lifter

Anver Corporation Anver introduces its vacuum tube lifter with a dual pad attachment designed to handle heavy boxes of nails, staples, and hardware. Designed for loading and unloading

CS Unitec The LRP 1503 VRA Boa Pipe Sander from CS Unitec is an allaround polishing solution for handrails, pipe, and tubing. It has an 11 amp motor, variable-speed control of 12 - 40 ft./sec. and is lightweight. The sanding arm

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snakes up to 270 degrees around the radius of the pipe and may also be rotated to achieve a 360-degree finish. An additional side handle can be rotated 180 degrees for narrow spaces, such as handrails, that are fixed close to walls. No tools are necessary for quick replacement of sanding belts and the spring resistance between the deflection rollers keeps the sanding arm and belt uniformly tensioned. The sander can be used for finishing stainless steel, other ferrous and nonferrous pipe, and can clean the pipe surfaces in preparation for welding. The Boa is also available as a 1 HP pneumatic model with 20 CFM air consumption at 90 PSI. Both pneumatic and electric models come with a carrying case and a variety of sanding belts. Contact: CS Unitec, Ph: (800) 7005919; Web:

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July/August 2007 


$UWLVW%ODFNVPLWK–V Association of North America, Inc. 91

Classifieds Recruiter

Independent Representation

Employment nationwide in structural/miscellaneous steel fabrication. ProCounsel is in communication with over 3,000 structural/ miscellaneous and ornamental steel fabricators. We can market your skills (estimator, project manager, detailer, shop manager) to the city or state of your choice without identifying you. Employer pays fee. The right location, the right job, at the right money. ProCounsel: Buzz Taylor. Call toll free (800) 545-5900, or (214) 741-3014. Fax: (214) 741-3019.

The Louis Hoffmann Co., a custom fabricator and installer of high end ornamental metal doors, stairs, railing and canopies is in search of an independent sales representative in Florida and other areas in the southeastern U.S. A strong candidate would have industry experience and a substantial contact base in the region. For more information please call Bryan at 262-251-7060.

Sales agent/reps wanted

Sumter Coatings is seeking independent sales agents/representatives for the eastern U.S. to represent our Metal Master Brand Paints. Qualifications would include someone currently selling other type products to ornamental and steel suppliers. Call, fax, or email Chet Dinkins at the number below for more information. Any emails should be preempted with a phone call to Chet before sending. Ph: 888-471-3400. Fax: 803-481-3776. Email: Home & Shop Available

Three-bedroom mountain home with 2,400 S.F. shop with 2T overhead bridge crane. Also a 800 S.F. barn on 4 acres. $598k Conifer Co. Call Dan or Linda Jorgensen, (303) 875-4441 or 4440.

Forgings rep wanted

Major, well-established NorthAmerican forgings manufacturer is seeking independent sales agents/representatives for the US and Canada to represent quality line of products (existing standard product line, extreme flexibility for custom iron products, powder-coated spindles and parts, fabrication, out-sourcing, etc.). Ideal candidates will have similar, but noncompeting lines and currently calling on nationwide and local suppliers and/or large end-users. Fax resume/line card to (210) 568-6996. Business Opportunity

Manufacturer, fabricator, and installer of high-end customized and artistic works in metal for commercial clients in U.S. and abroad. Company is located in Southeast Florida. Jobs include work in wrought iron, steel, stainless steel, aluminum and bronze for major hotels, shopping centers, resorts, office towers, and

Need an employee right away? If time is of the essence, consider posting your “help wanted” ad online by using the NOMMA Career Center. A free service to industry, this service is a great way to advertise your job posting. There are also sections for “Seeking Employment” and “Buy/Sell /Trade.” To access this area, simply visit and click on “Career Center.”


condominiums, etc. Products include balcony and stair railings, furniture, and sculptures. Revenue is approximately $500,000. Offered at $590,00. Warehouse building is industrial/commercial area offered separately. Contact: J.G. Montes at (786) 251-0034 or at Artist/Blacksmith Available

Artist/blacksmith is wanting to offer services, in collaboration, with any shop that might find them useful. I have 5 years of welding and general steel fabrication experience, as well as my personal study on the subject. Would also consider a truly unique opportunity in a custom metalworking facility. To see samples of my work, please visit: Employment Opportunities

See NOMMA’s website for listing of NOMMA member shops offering employment opportunities: Classified ad rates & information

Classified ads promote a one-time sale or offer or employment-related opportunities. Rates are as follows: 1–35 words = $65 ($50 member) 36–50 words = $90 ($75 member) 51–70 words = $115 ($100 member) 71-100 word = $145 ($130 member)

Need an employee? Do you have excess equipment? Selling your business?

Consider placing an ad in the Fabricator Classifieds section. Next closing date:

Friday, August 3 Fabricator  July/August 2007

Advertisers index

A thanks to the following advertisers for their support of O&MM Fabricator magazine ...

Pg 19 4 17 94 92 41 83 26 64 44

COMPANY ........................................................................WEBPAGE Apollo Gate Architectural Iron Designs. Architectural Products by Outwater Atlas Metal Sales Bavarian Iron Works Big Blu Hammer Mfg. Co. Big Blu Hammer Mfg. Birchwood Casey

To be completed

Advertise in NOMMA’s annual Supplier Directory Note: Closing Date for the 2008 NOMMA Supplier Directory is August 31, 2007

Bold denotes first time adverisers. Want your company’s name listed here? Call Todd Daniel at NOMMA. Ph: (888) 516-8585, ext. 102. Check out our online Supplier Directory to find detailed listings of supplier products. Visit:

Attention Suppliers: Advertise in the Jul/Aug Fabricator! The September/October issue of Fabricator will feature historical articles on NOMMA, plus our usual features covering machinery, new technology, and more. Don’t miss out! To place an ad, contact Todd Daniel (, 888-516-8585, ext. 102). July/August 2007  Fabricator

Sep/Oct 2007 Closing Date July 27, 2007 Nov/Dec Closing: Sept. 28 93

Business Perspectives

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket  You could be risking it

all (quite literally) by working for just a few customers. By Doug Bracken Wiemann Iron Works Recently some colleagues in a similar

business confided in me that their business was in dire straits. These are fine people with a long history of doing fine work, peers within their industry to be sure. However, they, as many other businesses do every year, fell victim to the same problems associated with taking on a single client or just a few clients for an extended period of time. In their particular case, their project lasted almost four years and once it was over it was over — and just as quickly as their last payment was received — they realized that they had to start building their business again, basically from scratch. Small businesses of all kinds are often lured into this trap by “big’“or “important” clients every day. For some, it’s the prospect of a steady paycheck; or, it may seem like a prestigious commission or “the job of a lifetime” for those involved in the craft trades, promising the opportunity to tell future clients where you worked or who hired you. All of this seems to make perfect sense at the time but rarely does this ever have a happy ending. For those of you who want to learn from the mistakes of others, (a life learning concept I recommend when94

ever possible), here is the skinny: Working for only one client takes you out of circulation. While you are out sailing the high seas of prestige and promise, your competition is taking your other customers out to lunch, most of whom will not return when your “ship comes in.” The best time to advertise is when you don’t need the business. In my experience, this cannot be overstated, especially for a company with all of their eggs in one basket. However, if you cannot serve the prospects your ads are reaching, word will get around that you are unavailable and, consequently, you have little business to fall back on when the project is complete even if you ARE advertising. Unless you have a pile of cash in the bank or you have such a good reputation within your industry that your existing clients will gladly wait for you to finish your big project while you put theirs aside, you will be subject to the whims of your big important client at some point. Imagine that he/she decides to play rough with you, asking for changes without agreeing to bear the costs, or perhaps they get manic due to some sort of life crisis — suddenly, your dream client has become your worst nightmare. And since you have no one else to work for, you have to play along; the worst part is, your client knows this!

Experienced fund or stock managers manage risk for their clients by spreading their clients’ funds around to a variety of investments. The small business owner and manager should do the same when it comes to their client list. The smaller the client list, the more risk we assume. I am sure there are exceptions to this scenario, but for the rest of us (all 99.9 percent of us) putting your entire business, or most of it, into the hands of a single client is possibly one of the riskiest moves we can make. So, before you land that “dream client,” be very cautious, consider the risk, and get compensated accordingly. I can assure you, though, from my own experience, that whatever you get paid will most likely not be enough. The author welcomes your comments, suggestions, and inquiries for reprinting rights at Douglas_Bracken

Doug Bracken is a past president of NOMMA.


July/August 2007




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Circle 11 on Reader Service Card

2007 07 fab  
2007 07 fab