Archive | August, 2019

Sell Your White Granite Countertops

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Sell Your White Granite Countertops

Posted on 29 August 2019 by CRadmin2

Granite is a very popular selection for modern countertops, but the trend has always been in darker colors. White granite is becoming increasingly well known, and the tips in this video from Edenhall Kitchens in Southampton, Penn., can be passed on to your prospective customers in order to make that tough sale.

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Reduce the Strain in Manual Material Handling

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Reduce the Strain in Manual Material Handling

Posted on 28 August 2019 by CRadmin2

The leading cause of disabling injuries in the construction industry is overexertion. More than one-third of all workers’ compensation claims in construction, including specialty trades, are accounted by this factor. While sudden trauma injuries, such as falls, have a fast onset, overexertion can be caused by repeatedly handling materials improperly, which puts undue stress on the body’s soft tissues.

Manual material handling includes several tasks: lifting, lowering, pushing, pulling, holding and carrying. This is why overexertion is such a common injury in construction. However, there are four primary reasons why workers become injured from overexertion:

  1. Workers twist or bend their backs while picking up materials.
  2. Workers hold materials too long.
  3. Workers frequently lift, hold and lower materials without taking a break.
  4. Workers hold materials too far away from the body.

To reduce overexertion injuries, several steps can be taken, including the following:

  • Decide where you want to place materials in advance.
  • Store materials off the ground to reduce the stress of bending and lifting.
  • Never lift or carry more than 50 pounds without help.
  • Bend at the knees and push legs upward when lifting.
  • Hold materials close to the body.
  • Lift heavy objects at one end before shifting the pivot point to the center.
  • Use specialized equipment to lift heavy materials.
  • Use supports to hold materials overhead.
  • Use platforms to raise and lower materials.
  • Never carry materials on ladders.
  • Never support materials with your head.
  • Take breaks so that muscles and joints have time to recover.
  • Use scaffolds to keep materials at knee height.
  • Never twist the body when lifting heavy materials.

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Alpha Professional Tools Introduces Ecoguard W6

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Alpha Professional Tools Introduces Ecoguard W6

Posted on 26 August 2019 by cradmin

Alpha Professional Tools® has introduced the newest addition to its Ecoguard Dust Collection line up.

The Ecoguard W6 is designed for collecting dust and debris when using a high-speed angle grinder with a vacuum.

The Alpha Ecoguard W6 fits on most 4-1/2-, 5- and 6- in. angle grinders. This unique guard was built for heavy-duty applications and has unique features such as the support base for precise cuts as well as an adjustable cutting depth to a maximum of 1-3/4 in. The clear cover allows for better visibility and is easy to install. It allows you to convert your existing dry angle grinder into a dustless tool and save money without the expense of a second tool.

The Alpha Ecoguard W6 comes with the following: multiple connectors for most popular grinders on the market today; inner flange; lock nut; spacers; stainless steel hose band; rubber hose adapter; side handle and pin wrench. In addition, for convenient attachment to a vacuum, Alpha offers a flexible hose, which can be purchased along with Ecoguard W6 as a kit.

You may also be interested in this article about the Supercell Dust Collector from Oneida Air Systems.

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Vadara Quartz Launches 21 New Colors

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Vadara Quartz Launches 21 New Colors

Posted on 23 August 2019 by cradmin

Vadara has curated a collection of 21 new colors as part of their natural stone-style quartz offering. The launch of the Elements of Design 2020 collection features an elevated, yet minimalistic aesthetic that’s specifically made for modern living.

Drawing from the four core elements of design, Vadara has made it easy to select a style the best suits your space:

  • Color – All colors feature warm, cool and neutral hues.
  • Line – The collection offers a variety of three distinct styles of veining ranging from bold veins to subtle designs.
  • Texture – Every natural stone surface is made from a durable quartz substance.
  • Size – New ‘jumbo slabs’ will cover an even greater surface area with minimal seaming; all measuring 63- by 126-in.

“At Vadara, we believe that good design lives in the details,” says CEO, Robert Butts. “This bold, new collection improves upon our previous offering with a thoughtful execution that raises the bar on modern interior design.”

You may also be interested in this article about new Q colors from MSI.

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Natural Stone Institute Adds to Resource Library

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Natural Stone Institute Adds to Resource Library

Posted on 21 August 2019 by cradmin

Eighteen new “Queries & Quandaries” articles have been added to the Natural Stone Resource Library. Authored by Natural Stone Institute Technical Director Chuck Muehlbauer, the articles originally appeared in the association’s member newsletter, The Cutting Edge. A wide variety of topics are covered in these articles, including tolerances, stone anchors, testing flexural strength, and countertop overhang limits.

294 documents are now available for download via the Natural Stone Resource Library, including technical bulletins and modules, Dimension Stone Design Manual chapters, and resources from other industry associations, including the National Building Granite Quarries Association and the Indiana Limestone Institute. All documents are available free of charge. Since launching in 2015, the Library has seen over 225,000 downloads. The Natural Stone Resource Library has become a trusted resource for stone companies, architects, designers, and construction professionals.

Access the Natural Stone Resource Library at www.naturalstoneinstitute.org/resourcelibrary.

You may also be interested in this article about OSHA’s request for information on Silica Standard for Construction.

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Park Industries Introduces SABERjet XP CNC SawJet

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Park Industries Introduces SABERjet XP CNC SawJet

Posted on 20 August 2019 by cradmin

Park Industries has introduced the new SABERjet™ XP CNC SawJet. The  SABERjet XP  is specifically designed to cut ultra-compact, quartzite, and porcelain materials and powers up with the industry-leading 27 hp saw arbor.

According to the company, when paired with the new Hypertherm® predictive maintenance 50 hp or 60 hp waterjet systems, unmatched processing speeds and shop efficiencies can be achieved. The booster pump maintains consistent supply line pressure to the waterjet pump of the SABERjet CNC SawJet.

The SABERjet XP SawJet allows for manual orthogonal stone cutting with the blade in any direction at any desired angle. The complexity of this manual mode cutting is made easy with the SABERjet XP. It allows simple manual cuts without generating a program.

The SawJet utilizes Alphacam, an intelligent and intuitive CAD/CAM software for stone fabrication that provides customers with productivity, reliability and flexibility.

You may also be interested in this article about the kappa 590 Premium Sliding Table Panel Saw.

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NAHB Projects 25-Point Drop in Interest Rates

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NAHB Projects 25-Point Drop in Interest Rates

Posted on 16 August 2019 by CRadmin2

At the end of July, the U.S. Federal Reserve cut its short-term funds rate by 25 basis points to a rate of 2.25 percent, according to a report from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Although the housing market is facing affordability issues from prospective homebuyers, the new rate will undoubtedly help by decreasing the cost of home loans.

The Federal Reserve’s policy has evolved over the last three quarters, and this is the reason why interest rates have fallen since last year. The housing market experienced a 10-year low in affordability just last fall, but the new policy has extremely positive prospects for both housing demand and home construction, which should reflect in the countertop industry. In addition, the new maximum interest rate provides an offset to the rising costs of construction.

Rising costs have been reducing affordable inventory, especially for entry-level buyers, and production costs have been the number one factor in the decline of affordability. The NAHB has already predicted a flat market for new homes and starts in 2019, and ballooning costs are a primary factor.

Looking at the larger picture of the overall economy, the Federal Reserve has said that the labor market is strong and activity is increasing at a moderate rate, which echoes the perspective of home builders, which is that the overall economy is slowing, labor shortages are being experienced and there are concerns about housing affordability. The Fed also stated that fixed investment for businesses has been soft, and this has also reflected in the housing industries in recent quarters.

Inflation has slowed, according to the Federal Reserve, and is currently below the target rate of 2 percent. If this trend continues, it will be in a position to reduce rates even further to spur on the slowing economy. However, there is no guarantee that this will transpire. The NAHB says that some investors are acting too aggressively in anticipation of a 75-basis-point reduction in the coming quarters.

Although the 75 point reduction may not happen, the NAHB still forecasts another 25 point reduction by the end of 2019 because of slowing inflation and growth, but the soft patch of the late-cycle housing market at the end of 2018 shows that there are still “ongoing macro risks.” To note, residential fixed investment is still down for the last year and a half.

For further information on the housing market, take a look at the Eye on Housing blog post by NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz.

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Antolini Presents New Exclusive Stone

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Antolini Presents New Exclusive Stone

Posted on 15 August 2019 by cradmin

Antolini has recently added Noir Blanc to its collection of Exclusive Stone.

The company described Noir Blanc as an expression of natural elegance, drawn from the rarest quarries. Like peering down on the gentle waves of a moonlit ocean, the white textures dance softly in the wind. Mother Nature knows no boundaries by creating flowing oceans and mirroring them with ostensibly, flowing marble. The dark background forms the canvas and the white lacerations drawn across it, will forever keep your eyes, and imagination entertained.

You may also be interested in this article about new Q colors from MSI.

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OSHA Requests Information on Table 1 of the Silica Standard for Construction

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OSHA Requests Information on Table 1 of the Silica Standard for Construction

Posted on 14 August 2019 by cradmin

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is requesting information and comment on Table 1 of the agency’s Respirable Crystalline Silica Standard for Construction. OSHA seeks information on additional engineering and work practice control methods to effectively limit exposure to silica for the equipment and tasks currently listed on Table 1. The agency is also requesting information about other construction equipment and tasks that generate silica that it should consider adding to Table 1, along with information about their associated engineering and work practice control methods.

In addition, OSHA is seeking comments about whether to revise paragraph (a)(3) of the Respirable Crystalline Silica Standard for General Industry to broaden the circumstances under which general industry and maritime employers would be permitted to comply with Table 1 of the silica standard for construction.

Information submitted will allow OSHA to consider new developments and enhanced control methods for equipment that generates exposures to silica, and provide additional data on exposures to silica from equipment and tasks using a variety of control methods under different workplace conditions. Expanding Table 1 to include additional engineering and work practice control methods, equipment, and tasks could provide employers with more flexibility and reduce regulatory burdens while maintaining protections for employees.

If information submitted in response to this request indicates that revisions to the silica standards are needed, the agency will then publish the proposed revisions in the Federal Register for public comment.

Comments must be submitted by October 14, 2019. Comments and materials may be submitted electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal, or by facsimile or mail. See the Federal Register notice for submission details.  

You may also be interested in this article about the OSHA Checklist.

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MSI Releases New Q Colors

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MSI Releases New Q Colors

Posted on 13 August 2019 by cradmin

Soapstone Metropolis

MSI has released two new Q Premium Natural Quartz colors; Soapstone Mist and Soapstone Metropolis.

Soapstone Mist features long, delicate white veins in a neutral dove-gray Q. Soapstone Metropolis is a neutral slate-gray Q with subtle white veining throughout.

According to the company, this easy-care quartz is suitable for a variety of applications including countertops, walls and floors in residential and commercial spaces. Q Premium Quartz never needs sealing and is chip-, scratch-, heat- and stain-resistant.

Both colors are available in 2CM and 3CM slabs with a polished finish.

You may also be interested in this article about new Radianz quartz colors.

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