By , September 10, 2012
Kevin Young

Hey guys, how’s it going?!

I’m back to let you know what’s been going on the last week here at GCII!! It’s been very busy and each and every day provides new learning experiences.  This week I had the opportunity to throw around (or fail at trying to throw around) large amounts of heavy, dirty steel.  I also got the opportunity to use new equipment to create parts for a transfer table braking system.  These two things will attract most of the attention of this post.

About a week ago,  a large bundle of bridge steel arrived for one of our projects.   Because certain pieces of  steel can be up to 40 feet in length and our receiving yard isn’t that large, our group tries to get things in and out as quickly as possible.  With that in mind, we laid out the steel and had holes drilled and ground down within 3 work days of the steel arriving in the yard.  The morning after the steel was all drilled and bundled, the truck was on its way to the galvanizer.  As you can probably assume, all space in the shop is valuable and we try not to waste it if at all possible.  When a project is complete, it’s out the door.

The last few days we have been heavily focused on fabricating brake segments for a transfer table.  I’d have to say the coolest part of doing this is seeing raw material of many varieties turn into organized pieces with their own distinct purpose. The process to create a part from raw material requires multiple steps, each with their own unique challenges.  First we must measure the material and mark it accordingly.  Measuring is typically done at each and every step as the part begins to take shapes and assembly constraints come into play.  After initial measurements are taken,  Josh and I cut numerous pieces of steel bar and tubing and punch/drill holes in accordance with drawings given by the engineering office.  I quickly learned last week that  we only keep a very small amount of extra material on hand so it’s generally a good idea to double check and cut it right the first time. After all pieces are cut/drilled/etc, Josh then welds them together, and boom, you have a part.

On a side note, it is worth mentioning that I’ve gotten to use several of the pieces of equipment in the shop while working on this project,  and that exposure will be invaluable going forward. I would advise anyone who wants to do this kind of job to take every opportunity you can to use new equipment and try new things (safely, of course).  Every new thing you learn will make your job easier and more efficient.

It’s starting to get exciting as more of the angle members arrive for the Fun Spot steel structure.  I’m sure I’ll have more on that process once it begins in earnest, but until then I’ll several smaller projects will keep me, and maybe even you guys, pretty occupied and entertained.

Until next time, thanks for reading!

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