Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues

Archive for 2010

3rd Annual WORLD QUALITY DAY Celebrated at SKOLNIK

December 14th, 2010 by Stephanie Bravo

Filed under: Cool Stuff, Industry News

On Thursday November 11, 2010, we celebrated our 3rd Annual World Quality Day at SKOLNIK. The purpose of World Quality Day is to promote awareness of quality and to encourage individual and organizational growth and prosperity. Our Quality Assurance Department hosted a visual presentation in our training room highlighting instances of some of our recent mistakes, many of our great accomplishments, and examples of the overall quality of the products we manufacture as well as the services we provide. Moises Basilio, our Testing and QA Technician was presented with a certificate for passing the exam for Certified Quality Inspector from the American Society of Quality (ASQ). The day had everyone in great spirits. In addition to the training, we had several presentations, took a company photo, hosted a luncheon and gave all employees sweatshirts commemorating World Quality Day 2010. Each year our celebration gets bigger and more meaningful as we celebrate our company achievements in quality. You can see the entire Skolnik team at www.skolnik.com/1988_ef_21.shtml. For more information about World Quality Day you can also log onto the CQI website at www.cqi.org.

Bio-Diesel Fueled in SKOLNIK Drums

December 14th, 2010 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Cool Stuff

In another action to participate in sustainability efforts, students from the Whitney Young Magnet High School, in Chicago, identified the SKOLNIK 30 and 55 gallon carbon steel drums as a critical component of their project competition. Known as the Whitney Young Biodiesel Team, the project goal was to take gallons and gallons of used cooking oil from various local restaurants, process this oil and then donate the biodiesel to farm co-ops or local bus companies. The Team also plans to build a second system and donate it to a school, 4-H club, or Future Farmers of America (FFA) club. The process of turning used cooking oil to biodiesel is a distillation process which begins with the collection of used cooking oil in an open head steel drum provided by SKOLNIK. It is preheated and “bubbled” in the preheating drum until it reaches about 104 degrees F, then the heated oil is pumped to a modified electric water heater that serves as the reactor vessel. Once clarified and filtered, the biodiesel is then charged in a manner that renders it usable as an alternate fuel supply. The Team was able to confirm the results of their efforts by testing the brew in a Go-Cart. As the photographs attest, the project was declared a success. On behalf of SKOLNIK, we wish to congratulate Jeane Emily DuBrose, Travis Hank, Anna Hernandez, Sabrina Kwan, Melissa Lin, Jake Morely, and teacher, Brian Sievers on a successful project that is another step towards global sustainability. See Pictures of the project here

Unified Wine & Grape Symposium 2011

December 14th, 2010 by Jason Snow

Filed under: Wine

With the season winding down, it’s time to start looking ahead to the 2011 harvest. On January 26th and 27th, SKOLNIK will be exhibiting our tremendously popular stainless steel wine drums in Sacramento, California, at the Unified Wine & Grape Symposium.  We have exhibited at this show for many years and each year, the enthusiasm grows about using stainless steel for wine processing. Around the world, stainless steel wine drums continue to revolutionize the industry, providing winemakers with a new realm of options and versatility.  This year we plan to bring one of our new variations – a seamless drum that is designed to be crevice free and bacteria free.  The Seamless Stainless drums are available in a 55 gallon size and in addition to preventing bacteria build-up, the crevice free, seamless bottom will provide a significantly easier cleaning process.  Please stop by and see us at Booth # 441. If you are planning to attend, please be our guest! We have a number of free entry vouchers that we would be happy to send to you and/or your colleagues.  If interested, contact us immediately at 773-884-1513, or email jason@skolnik.com

We’re on the right track to a 30’ drop!

November 9th, 2010 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Safety

The 2010 introduction of our Seamless Stainless line of Nitric and Processing drums resulted in these drums successfully passing their UN Liquids tests as high as 1A1/X2.0/600. Seamed drums are constructed by “seaming,” or rolling together, the body with the top and bottom heads. However, with the “Seamless” style of construction, the body, top, and bottom heads are joined by welding a bowl-like form to the center body. The resulting drum does, in fact, have a vertical body seam and a top and bottom horizontal seam, but all the welds are “butt-welded” and yield an utterly smooth, crevice-free interior surface.

With the goal of having this drum certified for Type A Liquids, 49CFR 173.466, this certification includes a 30′ (9 meter) drop test. Last month, we prepared a “mock test” to see if we were on the right design path. The plan was to drop the drum from a crane, 30′ onto a steel plate. As a result of a release complication, the drum’s first drop was successful, but unrecorded. However, we made a 2nd drop of the same drum, in the same orientation, and you can view the video of this 2nd drop. Amazingly, after 2 30′ drops, the drum successfully held its water contents. We will continue to test this drum towards a certified Type A Liquids rating, and welcome readers to contact us if there is a specific use or test for which you might want this drum to qualify.

Watch the video.

Improve Your Sustainability with a Steel Drum Stove

November 9th, 2010 by Josh Ford

Filed under: Cool Stuff

We recently received an inquiry from a potential customer, Mr. Ernst Peischl, asking about the features of our 30 gallon carbon and stainless steel drums. The dimensional details were critical as he informed me that he was going to use the drum to retrofit the fireplace in his home with a more efficient Barrel Stove. Ultimately, he bought an unpainted version our CQ3010, 30 Gallon Closed Head Steel Drum which is constructed of 18 gauge (1.2mm) carbon steel. He worked on it over the weekend and this morning, I received pictures of the finished product. Turns out that Ernst is somewhat of a master craftsman and made a very impressive stove. His goal was to use wood more efficiently, which he now should be able to do. The black steel pipe with the homls in it will be used to force combustion air into the firebox area. Click here to see photo’s of Ernst’s Barrel Stove.

I was so impressed, I thought it would be a good opportunity to let our Newsletter readers see an inexpensive and effective way to lower heating costs and improve global sustainability. If you are interested in purchasing a Stove Kit, they are available from vogelzang.com, and from Maxi Container. The steel drum you can buy directly from Skolnik. If you should choose to make a Barrel Stove, eliminate the possibility of pressure building inside the drum by removing (unscrewing) all closure plugs before starting construction. After construction, before reinstalling the plugs, remove the rubber plug gaskets as they are likely to burn. Ernst — thank you for sharing your project with us, and for letting us share it with our readers.

Wine by the Bottle or Tap?

November 9th, 2010 by Dean Ricker

Filed under: Wine

We have all heard of wine sold by the bottle, but by tap? At Out the Door, a small chain of restaurants in San Francisco, they are now serving 4 wines drawn from pressurized taps behind the bar. Served from reusable stainless steel barrel-kegs, the producers save the cost of the bottle, cork and carton. Another benefit, is that the wine always tastes fresh. Tap systems utilize an inert gas, like nitrogen, to push the wine through the lines. Being inert, the gas does not react with the wine; in fact it protects the wine for weeks against oxidation. The irony of this trend, is that it is an old idea that is new again. Just after prohibition American wineries often supplied restaurants with wine in oak barrels instead of bottles. With sustainability becoming a hot button issue for wineries and restaurants, the stainless steel wine barrel-keg offers a closed loop system with essentially zero waste. Look at the options of the Skolnik Stainless Steel Wine Drums to determine if a tap, rather than bottle, might improve your customer’s bottom line.