Equipment & Products

BLOCK HEIGHT MEASUREMENT For greater quality control, savings in scrapped product, reduced downtime, and plant safety, the manufacturer notes, its noncontact


For greater quality control, savings in scrapped product, reduced downtime, and plant safety, the manufacturer notes, its noncontact digital system provides block height measurement with laser accuracy for paver and wall block producers. Systems are installed at the fabricator’s facility to measure unit height upon transfer from the block machinery. Measurements taken by three lasers above the conveyor are transmitted to a display monitor next to the operator, enabling appropriate machine adjustments.

Features of the BlockQualifier cited by the manufacturer include:

  • Accuracy to within 0.5mm
  • Continuous display of block height measurement
  • Designed for operation in aggressive environments
  • Saves time while setting up machine for new block configurations
  • Adjustable to any conveyor height and adapts to any conveyor type
  • Provides an operations history log and stores statistical data to pinpoint production volume and downtime intervals
  • Lasers are enclosed and sealed in a robust enclosure
  • Easy installation and setup requires no interruption in operations

Users include Acheson, Alberta-based Expocrete Concrete Products, Ltd.
SCS Group Inc.
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Handling a range of product shapes and sizes, the manufacturer notes, the Model PTBC Blockveyor Curve optimizes conveying around turns while maintaining unit orientation. The equipment’s welded construction design, abrasion-resistant belt, and self-cleaning features provide for low maintenance operation and help prevent guide system buildup. Urethane conveying surfaces extend belt life, and elimination of chains improves guide system and drive service life. Powered or gravity transition rollers assist transfer across conveyor splices.

From individual pavers to full pallets, many types of loads are supported by the PTBC Blockveyor Curve. It is able to carry products at speeds up to 300 feet per minute. Also available are complementary conveying products including rollers, lineshaft conveyor, belt conveyor, bag flatteners, and lift tables.

A November 2004 Blockveyor installation for Oldcastle’s Trenwyth plant in York, Pa., still bears the original belt. Trenwyth Maintenance Mechanical Supervisor Sam Wantz, assisted by the manufacturer and its distributor Transply, Inc., selected the Blockveyor, figuring a 2_-year payback against existing equipment maintenance costs. The new system handles up to 80 blocks per hour and will run 24/7 in full production handling of 4- to 12-in. units.
Omni MetalCraft Corp.
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Company’s 24-in., heavy-duty cover is made of virgin HDPE and features a ribbed design, allowing it to accept both a 24-in. riser or corrugated pipe. The products feature what company engineers note is the highest UV package on the market today as well as watertight, robust design capable of withstanding loads up to 6,000 lb. Units are fabricated by injection molded process.
Polylok Inc.
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Geared for mixers with a rotating pan, the MHS has an integrated temperature sensor, which measures the mix temperature and automatically adjusts the quantity of water required due to raw material temperature variations.

The Microwave Sensor MHS is equipped with a high-wear-resistant ceramic protection plate, making it suitable for applications involving high concentrations of sand. The sensor’s trapezoid design prevents accumulation of material around the measuring plate. The MHS and companion microwave sensor designs integrate with the company’s Water Batching Computer BT-600, which determines moisture content of the concrete, calculating and dosing water needed to maintain optimal mix quality. Product developers affirm that the system’s user-friendly Windows-based software provides a high rate of repeatability based on the creation of a recipe-specific Tuning Curve.

The Water batching computer BT-600 can control up to two independently operating mixers. For larger installations with three or four mixers, the BT-6000 can control up to four independently operating mixers.
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While using magnets for adjusting steel rails for concrete forms is becoming what the manufacturer cites as the preferred method in prestressed concrete production, working with magnets around steel forms entails some drawbacks: Plant crews must be careful that magnets don’t accidentally slam into each other, plus magnets can be difficult to disengage and they attract metal debris.

Saf-T-Mag magnet addresses these problems by introducing an on/off feature. The magnet will not turn on unless placed on a steel surface. Once positioned, the magnet is activated by using a wrench to turn the knob 90 degrees. Available in 500-lb. or 2,000-lb. capacity, Saf-T-Mag stays firmly in place until the magnetic attraction is disengaged by turning the knob to the off position. Once off, the magnet can be easily removed from the casting surface without attracting metal shavings and debris.

Permitting quick form release and relocation, the Saf-T-Mag suits a variety of applications in addition to adjusting rail widths: marking window block-outs; holding headers in place, and securing welding plates.
Hamilton Form Co.
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Equipment line includes models capable of making product up to 12 in. tall. The 4048 Eagle Excel’s nominal moulding area is 40 in. front to back _ 48 in. side to side. The maximum moulding area is 42 _ 52 in., with a product height range of 0.75 to 12 in. The nominal pallet is 45 _ 55 in. with an adjustable range from 43 to 48 in. _ 55 to 57 in. Approximate machine weight is 30,000 lbs., less the HPU.A lower vibrator features 50 hp rating with rapid (<0.5 sec) engagement and removal. The hydraulic pump runs at 75 gpm, with temperature-controlled tank heater and return-line cooling. The unit also features a 10-gallon hydraulic accumulator; large hydraulic line sizes for rapid cycle rate; head and mould strip torsional equalizers for uniform mould motion and alignment; roll-in-track travel and reversible rotary feed box agitator system for rapid mould filling; and PLC operator control interface with diagnostic messages.
Reid Fleming
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Form-A-Nator combination tool features a sledge hammer and a cutting/digging blade on opposite ends. Constructed from one piece of forged alloy steel, the Form-A-Nator’s sledge hammer and cutter mattock blade are heat treated for strength and durability. The sledge hammer has a machined striking face, while the mattock has a tapered digging blade. A fiberglass clad handle consisting of a polypropylene cover injection-molded around a fiberglass pultrusion gives strength and durability to the tool, the manufacturer notes.

The Form-A-Nator can be used in and around concrete finishing and foundation jobsites, demolition applications, forcible entry and general landscaping. It replaces the need for carrying two tools, observe company officials, greatly increasing efficiency and convenience on the jobsite.
Council Tool Co.
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Suitable for contractors seeking full control of their dry-mix material from batching to placement, the manufacturer notes, the 914 Mobile Batch plant allows mixing to the desired consistency and volume at the jobsite, plus delivery of the mix to the gunite equipment. Available as either a truck-mounted or trailer unit, the 914 features a bulk material capacity of 12-14 yd. and a production capacity of 20 yd./hour. The continuous feed batch plant incorporates an hydraulic ratio-proportioning system and drive train. Combined with a gunite machine, such as the Ridley C-10, the 914 offers a self-contained, dry-mix operation for building pools, tunnels, embankments and other large scale jobs.
Airplaco Equipment
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The ICC Evaluation Service, Inc. (ICC-ES) recognizes Square Foot as the only code-approved square concrete footing form in the U.S. Notes a manufacturer spokesman, Working with ICC-ES to create specific guidelines was a necessary step to ensure that the concrete footings will meet and exceed all building code requirements and policies. Square Foot has proven to be safe through rigorous density and shrink testing.

Introduced in 2001, the preformed square footing for concrete spread foundations is said by product developers to provide superior structural strength, increased stability, and bearing capacity to withstand uplifting and tilting for commercial and residential applications. It can be used with any standard, 8- to 18-in.-diameter construction tube. Square Foot applications include bridges, decks, docks, radio towers, fences, wharfs, gazebos, and storage sheds.

Square Foot is installed by attaching the footing to a construction tube, placing the footing in an excavated hole, and backfilling around the concrete footing and pier. The orange plastic footings are available in three models: SF 22 accommodates 8- and 10-in. tubes; SF 28 accommodates 8-, 10- and 12-in. tubes; and, SF 32 accommodates 12-, 14-, 16- and 18-in. tubes.

ICC-ES evaluation report ESR-1131 provides guidance to code officials faced with approving Square Foot for use. The report is available at or Sound Footings LLC