Concrete Products

JAN 2019

Concrete Products covers the issues that attract producers of ready mixed and manufactured concrete focusing on equipment and material technology, market development and management topics.

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Page 69 of 103

64 • January 2019 COVER STORY BY DON MARSH MATERIAL MATTERS National Ready Mix dedicates a sizable percentage of Vernon aggregate storage capacity to a premium sand & gravel well suited to a market where developers are going vertical with building plans and high performance concrete is seeing much traction. The sand & gravel is sourced from Eagle Rock Aggregates Inc., which has begun importing fine and coarse grades from a Vancouver Island glacial deposit. (Note this month's companion report, "Stiff Competition," page 66.) "Ready mixed concrete in our market is no longer some universal commodity that can be delivered in the same manner by all producers and batch plants of yesteryear," observes National Ready Mix Vice Presi- dent of Sales Chris Heilmann. "Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety codes have seen revisions in recent years requiring significant advancements in our product, boosting the performance and strength of cast-in-place concrete. The code and current specifications we're seeing require a combi- nation of materials, not always local, and a batching facility that has the capacity to stock materials meeting new specifications. The Vernon plant is the best equipped ready mixed operation in Los Angeles to supply high volumes of specialty aggregate and cementitious material mixes." Early-fall trial production of high per- formance and conventional concrete mixes enabled National Ready Mix to begin com- mercial deliveries from Vernon in October; ease into a manageable schedule the remain- der of year; and, confidently approach major production days (> 2,000 yd.) certain in the first half of 2019. Sam Hild and his Opera- tions team are anxious to see how far they can push their new iron crown jewel. "We anticipate reaching close to 450 yards per hour and sustaining that rate as large pours require," he affirms. "We have plants where you might be able to do 300 yards an hour for three or four hours, but then at some point they run out of material and have to wait while bins and silos are replenished. We are able to operate Vernon at maximum capacity for any amount of time one or mul- tiple pours would require." "We think what we'll be able to provide here for customers is better than anybody in the market," adds National Cement Com- pany of California President Steve Wise. "We're able to bring them the production capacity for normal or volume work, and offer a variety of mix designs very quickly throughout the day—all from a plant right near the center of major building activity in Los Angeles." PHOTOS: Concrete Products Process water captured in mixer truck washout area and from nearby leftover mix ribboning pad is settled in four stages (middle), then pumped to a larger pit adjacent to a washdown station (top) in front—to drivers' left. Settled water from both areas is tapped for subse- quent truck cleaning and batch water. National Ready Mix addressed storm water capture and significant recycling opportunity with construction of a 50,000-gal. storage tank built below the washdown station.

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