At the AHR Expo this year, there were many new and exciting products. I saw so many new products that it took me a day to review all my notes and the follow-up continues. One of the neat things about being a media member at such an event is that I have the opportunity to have a sneak peak of product demonstrations before the show opens up and the opportunity to talk with different company representatives to find out what products created the most buzz among attendees.
During Viega’s media event, the MegaPress system was demonstrated. The MegaPress system is a fast, safe and reliable way to join schedule 5 - schedule 40 black steel pipe. This unique press technology secures pipe connections in less than seven seconds.
According to Viega’s Director of U.S. Sales Joe Pikus, who demonstrated the system, some of the main advantages of the MegaPress are time savings, which equates to about 30% to 60% reduction in labor and easy installation. Since there is no threading of the pipe, there is no need for threading dies or threading oil, which results in a cleaner work area. Plus, there is no material removed from the pipe when using MegaPress, resulting in an overall stronger system.
Pikus said that during the show attendee interest in the MegaPress was overwhelming. Here are just some of the responses from AHR attendees about the MegaPress:
“This will change the way carbon steel piping systems are installed.”
“Now we have another use for the Ridgid tool. With one tool we can install copper, carbon steel and stainless steel piping systems. This eliminates the need for torches, solder, flux and now threading machines on the job.”
“This will make installation of gas lines much faster.”
During Ridgid’s press event, the Ridgid CA-300 camera was introduced. The CA-300 gives the contractor the ability to confidently diagnose and detect problems. The camera also is great to use in hard to reach spaces. There is also a recording feature, so the contractor can save and share images and video of what they find.
Joe Cicco, associate product manager for Ridgid, said that RIDGID has had a strong presence in handheld inspection for the HVAC market since the company launched the SeeSnake micro, the first inspection camera for contractors.
“It was apparent from the response of show attendees that the micro CA-300 will continue with that success,” said Cicco. “The biggest features of interest were the relative ease to record images and video to an SD Card. The clarity of the image on the screen also drew a lot of stunned looks, especially when the unit was demonstrated within our motor box display. A number of professionals were also interested in the extendibility of the imager cables (up to 30 feet) and the fact that they could use either a 17mm or 6mm camera head on the unit. This was especially important for technicians inspecting for cracked heat exchangers.”
At the Taco press event a variety of new products were showcased. One of the products that created a note-worthy buzz was the iWorx web-based building management, monitoring and control system. This product also impressed a father-son contracting team visiting the AHR Expo.
This father-son team sat in the Taco classroom, located at the booth, and listened to Greg Cunniff, Taco’s manager of application engineering, talk about the company’s LOFlo System for radiant cooling and chilled beam solutions.
“The son was immediately excited because he saw the opportunity that Taco provided him; a turnkey solution for learning about, designing on our free software, sourcing and installation of a cutting edge system,” said Mark Chaffee, director of marketing at Taco. “However, his main concern was properly controlling the system.”
This is when Cunniff introduced them to the Worx web-based building management, monitoring and control system.
“It turns out the son has always had a knack for the controls side of the business but no one had helped enable him to combine this interest with the current core mechanical competency of the company,” said Chaffee.
As you can see, there were a variety of exciting products that created a buzz among attendees at the AHR Expo. Make sure you read CONTRACTOR’s full coverage of the AHR Expo in the March print issue. There will also be more coverage of the AHR Expo online.