Every year for over a decade Milwaukee Tool has invited members of the trade media and social influencers to their Brookfiled, WI headquarters for the first look at all the new tools coming that year. This is a two day event that has grown a lot o=ver the years, we here at Mechanical Hub are Read more
Every year for over a decade Milwaukee Tool has invited members of the trade media and social influencers to their Brookfiled, WI headquarters for the first look at all the new tools coming that year. This is a two day event that has grown a lot o=ver the years, we here at Mechanical Hub are proud to say we have attended each year the traditional New Product Symposium (NPS) has happened in the past. NPS is the event we first learned of Milwaukee Tool’s now famous FUEL line of tools, even their M18 and M12 series known everywhere for their huge offering of tools and impressive performance.
This year NPS was in danger of happening at all because off the COVID-19 pandemic. Like everything and everyone these days, Milwaukee Tool was challenged with having to simply “figure it out”. Well, they sure did! The PIPELINE series of broadcast events debuted on August 20th to all of Milwaukee’s fans, not just the media and influencer crowd!
Here is a brief recap of some of the tools we all got our eyes on for the first time in episode 1. If you’d like to watch PIPELINE episode 2 on Sept 10, sign up here.
LAUNCH DATE: NOVEMBER 2020 FRICTION RING: 2854-20, 22, 22CT; 2855-20, 22 PIN DETENT: 2855P-20, 22
Milwaukee Tool continues to transform cordless expectations with the introduction of new go-to impact wrench solutions when accessing tight spaces. Measuring at only 4.8” in length and delivering up to 250 ft-lbs of nut-busting torque, Milwaukee’s next generation M18 FUEL Compact Impact Wrenches deliver the performance needed in tight applications where larger impact wrenches cannot fit.
M18 FUEL SECTIONAL MACHINE FOR 5/8″ AND 7/8″ CABLE
2818A-21, 2818B-21, 2818-21
The M18 FUEL Sectional Machine for 5/8″ and 7/8″ Cable is the most portable and most powerful sectional machine for 1-1/4″ – 6″ drain lines. The POWERSTATE Brushless Motor and REDLINK PLUS Intelligence delivers the power to clear heavy roots up to 150 ft out, providing more power than corded even at the maximum capacity of the machine. The sectional machine ensures the easiest transportation and setup on all jobs by being lightest weight and most compact tool in its class, and offers carry strap connection points for hands-free transportation. The M18 REDLITHIUM High Output HD12.0 Battery Pack powers through multiple jobs on a single charge, and increases safety by providing power anywhere without the use of extension cords.
M12 FUEL 1.6 GALLON WET/DRY VACUUM
LAUNCH DATE: OCTOBER 2020 0960-20, 0960-21
The first 12V wet/dry vacuum of its kind, this new solution delivers 18V performance on a 12V platform. The most compact wet/dry vacuum available today, and operating up to 2X quieter, it provides up to 40% more suction to easily complete all quick and service-oriented clean-up applications.
M18 FUEL PACKOUT 2.5 GALLON WET/DRY VACUUM 0970-20
Milwaukee Tool is proud to introduce the most powerful small capacity 18V wet/dry vacuum, fully compatible with the PACKOUT Modular Storage System. The M18 FUEL PACKOUT 2.5 Gallon Wet/Dry Vacuum delivers up to 60% more suction than other 18V wet/dry vacuums, giving users the performance and power they need to quickly clean up a wide range of materials.
MX FUEL TOWER LIGHT
LAUNCH DATE: EARLY 2021 MXF041-1XC
The MX FUEL ROCKET Tower Light/Charger is the most portable 10′ light for both indoor and outdoor use, provides up to 27,000 lumens of task and area lighting, and withstands the harshest jobsite environments. Whether it needs to be moved across rough terrain during early phase construction or across pan decking for early morning concrete pours, the 8″ all-terrain wheels ensure you can easily roll across uneven ground. It can be set up in seconds to a max height of 10′ with a motorized mast, and collapses back down to 44″ for easy transportation and storage. Once it is in place, 4 outriggers can quickly be deployed to provide more stability on uneven surfaces. The four multidirectional light heads give users the ability to cast up to 27,000 lumens of TRUEVIEW High Definition Output in several directions.
MX FUEL DRUM MACHINE LAUNCH DATE: NOW! MXF501-1CP
The MX FUEL Sewer Drum Machine w/ POWERTREDZ is built with POWERTREDZ Lift Assist technology which makes it easier for one person to transport the machine up and down stairs, as well as in and out of service vans. In addition, the machine has the power to clear roots 200 ft out while containing the mess with a fully enclosed drum.
Keep an eye out on our social media and here on the site for coverage of episode 2!
Some talented people seem to have the ability to create anything. Regardless of what they apply themselves to, the end result is always stunning. Upstate New York is home to one of these independent, relentless creative minds. In Jimmy Diresta, genius, vision, originality and the spirit of craftsmanship come together. Known best for creating functional Read more
Some talented people seem to have the ability to create anything. Regardless of what they apply themselves to, the end result is always stunning. Upstate New York is home to one of these independent, relentless creative minds.
In Jimmy Diresta, genius, vision, originality and the spirit of craftsmanship come together. Known best for creating functional art of all variety, he’s an inventor, artist, fabricator, TV personality, podcaster, author, video producer, prolific YouTuber and social media star.
Whether he’s hand-crafting tools or building a wooden canoe, Diresta’s work is unique and always documented on his YouTube channel.
“I’ve been a lifelong maker,” said Diresta. “It started in elementary school, and I’ve done nothing else since.”
His most widely-known project was fabrication of an AK-47-themed guitar, or “Gattar” for musician Wyclef Jean. According to the rapper, the functioning musical instrument symbolizes music as a weapon. The ubiquitous Kalashnikov was chosen because, since its inception in 1947, it has come to symbolize “revolution.”
Crazy guitars aside, in Diresta’s mind, his greatest creation has been his YouTube channel.
“I capture, edit, and market all my own content and have attracted an audience that appreciates the work I do,” said Diresta, referring to his 1.8 million subscribers. “There are 329 million channel views, and it’s become my online portfolio.”
That portfolio has attracted attention from a lot of big names. Diresta has collaborated with a wide variety of companies, including DeWalt, Bulleit Whiskey, Carhartt, Carolina Shoe, Guinness and others.
More creative space needed
As Diresta’s online presence grew, he found himself with a good problem – he needed more space.
“In 2004 I bought a farm in the country with intentions to build a barn, to become my main workshop,” he explained. “I was working in the city at that time, and it wasn’t until I started making money on YouTube that I could fulfill the dream.”
In 2017, Diresta took the plunge, beginning construction on the 40×72 pole barn – called, simply, the Black Barn – that would ultimately become an event space, rather than the workshop he’d initially envisioned. The barn is now where he hosts blacksmithing and woodworking classes on the weekends.
Like many of the things that Diresta is involved with, the construction project became a group effort between a number of other creators and social media influencers.
Kyle Stumpenhorst (@RRBuildings) was hired to build the frame and roof, using construction of the building to launch his own YouTube channel. David Parraguirre (@TheMexicanCarpenter101) completed the building, including flooring, paint, exterior, windows, and layout of half-inch radiant tubing at 12-inch centers before the shop’s slab was poured.
“I chose these craftsman for the project because they’re meticulous and extraordinarily talented,” said Diresta. “I wanted the job done right, and I wouldn’t have been as meticulous on a construction project myself.”
Every time he brought up construction of a pole building, people recommended installing a radiant heating system to combat the big winters in upstate New York. Diresta had the radiant tubing installed but held off on the boiler.
During construction of the barn, work halted for an extremely rainy day. Diresta salvaged that day by hosting a meet and greet of sorts, for people in the area that wanted to chat with himself, Kyle or David. In attendance was Moe Hirsch, owner of Moe’s CAMs (Consulting and Mechanical Services) in Pomona, NY.
“Moe’s passion for hydronics was evident immediately, and we discussed the installation of a boiler for the radiant system,” said Diresta. “We left it there for almost two years, but in 2019, I contacted Moe, and he came back out to the farm to begin designing a system.”
Hirsch started with a heat load calculation. The building has blanket insulation on the walls and spray foam in the ceiling. Diresta wanted to maintain 60°F indoors on a regular basis with the ability to bring the space up to 70°F during events.
Hirsch found the load to be 105 MBH. His plan was to install a Viessmann condensing boiler and a single Taco VT 2218 circulator in Delta-T mode to serve the 12-loop radiant system.
“I use Taco delta-T circulators on all my radiant jobs, but having a pump respond to return water temperatures was especially important on this project,” said Hirsch. “I used a 20°F delta here. Nobody is walking around in the shop with bare feet, so if there’s a slight surface temperature inconsistency, it’s irrelevant, and a small price to pay for the efficiency gained by wringing every last drop of condensate out of the heat exchanger.”
The Black Barn doesn’t have a thermostat. Jimmy simply controls the temperature of the building via the boiler’s mobile app, which is linked to the unit’s outdoor reset control. Rather than the boiler getting an open/close signal, it receives direct feedback, and sets a supply water temperature based on the outdoor reset control.
The hydronic system is quite simple. Jimmy wanted as few moving parts as possible. A single circulator serves the entire system. It pumps directly into and out of the high volume, low pressure drop boiler, and circulates the slab. There are no mixing valves or closely-spaced tees. On a -5°F design day, supply water temperatures reach 100°F. Never more.
Additionally, a Taco 4900 air separator is installed high on the near boiler piping. Though this installation was new, Hirsch finds the slightly wider fitting to fitting width of the 4900 to be a big advantage in replacement situations.
“The width of this air separator allows me to cut out most failed separators and install the new one without having to add pipe,” he explained.
Hirsch also installed a 20-gallon Axiom glycol feeder with Hercules antifreeze mixed to provide protection down to 0°F.
Refuge from the cold
“In one respect, this job was no challenge at all,” explained Hirsch. “Jimmy was extremely accommodating. He had prepped and painted the wall behind the boiler, there was ample space to work in, and there were no steps to navigate, no molding to protect, etc. On the other hand, everything outside was covered in ice for the duration of the project, and the job is very remote with no supply houses within an hour-and-a-half. But Jimmy understood all of this and was patient.”
Like all the appliances on the property, the new boiler is propane-fired. A master switch in the mechanical space allows Diresta to disconnect the hydronic system and use generator power.
“Ice storms aren’t uncommon here and can disrupt power supply,” said Hirsch. “The boiler draws very little power and the single ECM pump uses just a bit more. Jimmy can run this entire heating system on the smallest emergency generator.”
The boiler install was wrapped up in mid-December, with plenty of heating season left for Jimmy to appreciate the improvement.
“Everyone said I’d be foolish if I didn’t install a radiant system in the shop,” said Diresta. “I was told that it’s the most economical and comfortable option for of heating a big open space like this. Now that it’s operational, I can’t agree more! It’s always comfortable, even if it’s 10°F outside. And that’s what I was looking for, a refuge from the cold.”
“Just like David and Kyle, Moe is a master of his craft,” continued Diresta. “The three of them delivered exactly what I was hoping for, and more. They’ve created a beautiful, useable, comfortable space that has allowed me to expand and diversify my operation here on the farm. In a lot of ways, this is a culmination of a dream for me, and I’m proud of what we’ve all created here.”
A highly efficient, environmentally friendly and safe system should be the outcome of all condensing appliance installations. The system is made up of many components and all must work together to achieve the goal of providing the end user with the best possible system. A high efficiency condensing appliance by itself does not mean a Read more
A highly efficient, environmentally friendly and safe system should be the outcome of all condensing appliance installations. The system is made up of many components and all must work together to achieve the goal of providing the end user with the best possible system. A high efficiency condensing appliance by itself does not mean a highly efficient, environmentally friendly and safe system. The boiler, water heater or furnace must be installed as per manufacturer’s instructions then combustion performance must be tested, and controls properly set for that application. The system, which the appliance is connected to, must also be designed and installed properly. This may consist of proper pipe sizing, pump sizing, duct sizing and other considerations.
All condensing appliances produce condensate. A condensing appliance operating in full condensing mode will produce up to one gallon per hour for every 100,000 BTU/hour of input. This can total over 2,000 gallons of condensate in a heating season. Even more if there is a condensing water heater. This condensate is acidic and will have a pH of somewhere between 1.8 and 4.5. Any condensate below 5 to 5.5 can and will cause damage if not treated before disposal. The actual pH of the condensate from the appliance is dependent on several factors including but not limited to chemical makeup of the gas, proper adjustment of the combustion process and any contaminants in the combustion air.
When condensing boilers and furnaces were first introduced, they were oftentimes replacing old cast iron boilers and atmospheric furnaces that were vented into a chimney. Because the new appliance was direct vented, the old gas fired water heater with the 3” vent was now venting into an 8” plus masonry chimney. And we all know what happened then! That’s right, it rained inside of that chimney. The resulting condensate ate away the mortar, the bricks and the metal vent itself. So new codes were put in place to govern proper chimney venting to prevent damage from acidic condensate. The same acidic condensate that we make with condensing appliances by the way. And what happens?
Non treated condensate will damage and destroy cast iron, galvanized, copper and other types of metallic piping. If it is going into your septic system, then you run the risk of destroying the bacterial environment which is crucial to a properly operating septic system. If you are disposing of it into a public sewer system, then it is contributing to the potential damage and higher maintenance costs to that system including piping and the treatment facilities. If you are disposing of it directly to the ground it will kill plant life in the general area and put acidic liquid into the ground water.
Treating this condensate with a quality condensate neutralizer is an easy and effective way to avoid the above issues. A neutralizer should contain a proven high-quality media to provide effective neutralization. The media should consist of calcium carbonate and magnesium oxide. Marble chips from the big box store are not the answer. These marble chips work for a very short period. The reason for this is that while marble does contain some calcium carbonate, it is also made up of many other minerals which make it harder thereby reducing its neutralizing capacity. You should be able to easily visually inspect the neutralizer to determine if it needs recharging. The neutralizer should be easy to recharge. Most neutralizers should be recharged annually when the appliance receives its annual preventive maintenance service.
Let’s make this necessary accessory a part of every condensing appliance system.
Mike Bernasconi is VP, Technical Operations, Neutrasafe Corporation. For more info, www.neutrasafe.com.
This Northern California plumber’s tenacity matches the company name through hard work, perseverance and a willingness to learn and to keep getting better at her craft. Self-employed and co-owner of Bulldawg Plumbing, Red Bluff, Calif., Laura Nobert’s (@bulldawg_plumbing) real first experience in the trades was working for a few years in general construction with a Read more
This Northern California plumber’s tenacity matches the company name through hard work, perseverance and a willingness to learn and to keep getting better at her craft.
Self-employed and co-owner of Bulldawg Plumbing, Red Bluff, Calif., Laura Nobert’s (@bulldawg_plumbing) real first experience in the trades was working for a few years in general construction with a company that did remodeling in San Francisco. “That job introduced me to power tools, jackhammers, sheetrock, etc. I started as a laborer and grunt and absolutely loved the challenge, and found the work incredibly fulfilling,” says Nobert.
Although Nobert is a first-generation tradesperson, she credits family first. “I had a twin sister who always had my back and supported and encouraged me no matter what my endeavors, successes or setbacks.”
One such setback—an unfortunate incident a bit later in her foray into the trades—Nobert had an industrial accident where she fell from a significant height and landed directly on her head. “The doctors said it was a miracle I wasn’t dead or paralyzed, but I definitely was injured and was pretty much in bed for three years,” says Nobert.
Shortly after recovering, Nobert made neon signs and worked with hot glass, which was fulfilling, creatively. “But when I got the opportunity to try plumbing, I jumped at the chance, both boots in. Luckily, the idea of learning such a valuable and challenging trade TOTALLY eclipsed my lifelong ‘poop fear.’”
For the past eight years she’s been killing it as a plumber working mainly service work and drain cleaning. “I love the satisfaction that comes from solving a complex mystery or the feeling that comes with overcoming extreme physical challenges to get the job done,” says Nobert.
Yet, being a woman in the trades has its share of funny looks—from others. “When I knock on a door, I almost ALWAYS get met with confused or incredulous looks. Sometimes people blurt out stuff like, ‘Is the real plumber still in the van?’ Or: ‘You’re the WHAT?!’”
A real facet of working in a male-dominated industry, Nobert feels like she is under a higher level of scrutiny than male counterparts. “I’ve noticed that when I work with men, people will automatically talk to them first or make comments like: ‘Oh, is she your sidekick?’ Some will laugh at the idea of me crawling under a house, because they think it’s a joke. Oh, and I worry that if I ever need to find another job, seeing a female name on my resume might keep companies from considering me.”
Being a mentor or trailblazer for other women to follow in the trades, Nobert never really stopped and considered it. But perhaps she is already. “I guess I’m more of a one-on-one kind of person because I usually just focus individually on the people I come in contact with. Like when I work for women who seem interested in the trade/tools/mechanics, I try to explain things, show them how things work, how to do it themselves, etc. More often, I encounter women who are intimidated and scared by the whole process. Often, it’s just because no one has ever explained or showed them how things work, so the topic is just a big, scary mystery. I have a lot of compassion for those women, so I try to help them feel more secure by explaining things—showing them how to shut off water and gas supplies, clean aerators, etc. I always tell them they can call me if they have questions or are nervous about anything.”
And the best advice she can give anyone, “I would tell any person wanting to enter the trades that the desire to learn and the willingness to work hard and not give up are traits that really make a difference.”
That willingness to learn is so critical. “I know that blue collar work used to be kind of an embarrassing career and that tradespeople were considered uneducated but I feel as though shows like Dirty Jobs have really helped to elevate the trades to new levels in the United States. Social media accounts—like Mechanical Hub—are continuing to make great strides in promoting the trades and sharing the knowledge so that important progress continues. I think that encouraging pride and respect for the trades definitely increases its appeal,” says Nobert.
In fact, social media has had a great influence on Nobert (@bulldawg_plumbing). “I am so grateful I found this community on Instagram because it’s made a huge difference in my life and career as a plumber. It’s given me the opportunity to learn so much more than I ever would have without it—seeing what other people achieve inspires me to keep learning and trying to improve my skills and abilities. There are just so many talented tradespeople on Instagram. I love how supportive people are towards each other and how they are willing to share their knowledge so freely. It’s amazing to have a place to share this passion with other people.”
In closing, the last time Nobert said it was a great day? “I was probably crawling out from under a house, hanging out with my daughter, or playing with my son.”
Oh, and the name Bulldawg? “I’ve had two bulldogs in my life; they are an impressive breed. They never give up, even when they are in pain, and I really admire that kind of heart and tenacity,” says Nobert.
Jon Block, LH Block Electric Company, LLC, Bartlett, Ill., got the chance to get out of the shop and use the Milwaukee M18 FORCE LOGIC Knockout set (model #2677-23) out in the field with one of his foreman, Bruce, and an apprentice. “Bruce was super excited to try it out and couldn’t wait to use it. One Read more
Jon Block, LH Block Electric Company, LLC, Bartlett, Ill., got the chance to get out of the shop and use the Milwaukee M18 FORCE LOGIC Knockout set (model #2677-23) out in the field with one of his foreman, Bruce, and an apprentice.
“Bruce was super excited to try it out and couldn’t wait to use it. One of the first things we both loved about it was the punch and dies themselves. The cross lines on the MILWAUKEE EXACT die helped us get each punch exactly right and on the mark. We then began punching a series of 3/4”, 1”, and 2” holes and we both marveled at the ease and quickness of changing the punches back and forth,” says Block.
When using the old hydraulic knockout sets, someone always had to hold up the press and one guy would take off the die or punch. The press was always heavy and cumbersome and a hassle, and would leak hydraulic oil if not tightened properly. Granted, Block had one of its old trusty hydraulic knockout sets for 45 plus years and it did a great job for a very long time.
“My Father used this set when he was an apprentice so it’s had it fair share of use. My hope is that this new Milwaukee punch set will hold up just as well. It seems very well constructed and has that old school Milwaukee marketing slogan ‘Nothing but Heavy Duty’ feel to it,” says Block.
Punching knockouts is a one-person job now for LH Block. “We can do it from any position, which helps make it easier to use while up in the air or on a ladder. There are no hoses in the way to fumble around with.”
Overall, says Block, the tools performance itself was, for the most part, smooth as silk. “It took us a few seconds to get the trigger control down, but it was easy to adjust to. The dies are super sharp. I’m hoping that over time they’ll remain that way. I’m interested in how many holes we’d get in one battery, but we finished off 13 holes and it still had a full charge.
“My foreman is in love with this machine. Our apprentice, after very little instruction, was able to use it just as well. My guys always thought the best inventions in our trade was the Milwaukee M12 Bandsaw and the impacts. But I think they found a new favorite,” says Block.
Information from Milwaukee Tool
Our M18™ FORCE LOGIC™ 6 Ton Knockout Tool 1/2″-4″ Kit reduces the tedious steps of hole making, improving your speed and limiting your fatigue. This knockout punch tool is specifically designed to be the ideal mild steel punching tool. It is powerful enough to punch up to 4” holes in 14 gauge mild steel. It is also 40% lighter weight than other 6T knockouts available. The electrical knockout tool has a compact, right angle design that delivers you the best clearance in tight spaces. Our Quick Connect Alignment System provides you with easy set-up without the weight of the tool and speeds up repetitive punching. The tool is compatible with all our MILWAUKEE® EXACT™ punches and dies. The knockout dies are rated for both mild and stainless steel punching. Vivid red cross hairs provide you with accurate alignment and slug removal ports provide optimal slug removal. The gripping surface on the EXACT™ punches allows you to thread faster. The cordless 6-ton knockout tool delivers the Easiest Way to Punch.