Wheatland Tube Color

Bright Lights, Big Ideas: NECA Convention & Trade Show Recap

The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) Convention serves as a unique venue for us to work side by side with our distributor partners and to promote our products directly to end users. The NECA staff did a great job and the new NECA 2012 Las Vegas app was fantastic – it provided a quick and easy way to view the convention layout, schedule our agenda and access handouts via our smartphones.

The Wheatland booth was manned by Marty Brett, Mike Kreger, our new Southwest Regional Manager, and me. We demonstrated the difference in friction reduction between or our new FasTrak Plus EMT ID coating and our old ID coating, displayed samples of our Color Check EMT, and showed our segment on Fox Business Network's "Manufacturing Marvels," a series that showcases leading American manufacturers.

I learned a lot. High interest around Color Check EMT taught me that more project owners are specifying colors for systems. Project owners told me that savings, quality of the coating and convenience are the main reasons for choosing factory applied versus on the job coatings. We had visitors from coast to coast, Hawaii, and Peru.  It was very exciting to hear that Wheatland's electrical conduit and EMT products are being specified and requested by contractors in Peru.

The numbers I heard regarding this year's show seem to reflect the activity we saw at our booth.  Attendance was reported to be over 3,700 registered attendees, not counting staff and exhibitor personnel.  In the past more than 60% of attendees were owners, top executives and supervisors -- this year appears to have followed that mix.

Well, if you missed us at NECA this year, mark your calendar for October 13 - 15, 2013 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC.  We will be in booth 551, so stop by!

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Corrosion: What it is, What it Does and How to Address it

The 1965 edition of the National Electrical Code® (NEC®) added the requirement that “raceways be suitable for the corrosive environment to which it is exposed.” Section 300.6, Protection Against Corrosion and Deterioration, requires that, ”Raceways, cable trays, cable bus, auxiliary gutters, cable armor, boxes, cable sheathing, cabinets, elbows, couplings, fittings, supports and support hardware shall be of materials suitable for the environment in which they are to be installed.” Article 300 Wiring Methods apply generally to all wiring methods unless modified by other articles.

So, what defines corrosion?

Corrosion, simply put, is the atmospheric oxidation of metals: iron + oxygen + water = rust. Limit the factors contributing to the corrosion rate of metal, and you extend the service life of the metal. The galvanizing processes used on our steel RMC, IMC and EMT have demonstrated that the zinc coating provides long-lasting protection. However, the requirement that it “…shall be of materials suitable for the environment in which they are to be installed” indicates a need to be more specific.

While Article 344, Rigid Metal Conduit, and Article 342, Intermediate Metal Conduit, states that galvanized steel RMC and IMC “shall be permitted under all atmospheric conditions” — and Article 358, Electrical Metallic Tubing, has a similar requirement, except limiting atmospheres (excluding some hazardous locations) — “where protected by corrosion protection and approved as suitable for the condition” charges the contractor and Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) with the responsibility to employ other methods of corrosion control when deemed necessary. This could mean changing to a more suitable material, a modification to the environment (such as increased ventilation or drainage), or the use of supplementary PVC coating, paints or wraps.

How do you deal with it?

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