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

Archive for September, 2018

Check the “Hazmatt” Box!

September 25th, 2018 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat, Industry News, Skolnik Newsletter

Many of the products that we use on a daily basis, including batteries, aerosol sprays, and adhesives, contain hazardous materials (hazmats). The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) hazmat regulations require that these products be properly classified, packaged, labeled, handled, and stowed for transportation over public right-of-way. This protects workers, emergency responders, and the general public from the risks associated with hazmat transportation. The US Dept of Transportation has introduced a new character, ‘HazMatt’, designed to help ‘reach the unreached’ who are unaware that they are shipping hazardous materials. Speaking at the recent Labelmaster DG Symposium, PHMSA’s Shane Kelley explained that all the modal agencies under DOT are working together to get the message out as widely as possible, particularly to those that do not normally receive the hazmat message. The project is ongoing — and is worth following at checkthebox.dot.gov.

Remember: If you ship products, it is your responsibility to know whether those products are hazmat, and to communicate their hazards appropriately, according to DOT’s hazmat regulations. Shipping a non-compliant hazmat can result in hefty fines from the DOT!

The Secret of the Search: Industrial Steel Drums

September 24th, 2018 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Industry News

Sometimes, okay a lot of the time, Google is a Godsend. However, whether you’re searching for something online or in your garage, it helps to be specific. Otherwise, your search could turn up dry. In the case of searching for steel drums, your search could turn up slightly more musical than expected.

If you’re searching for a good industrial container, be sure to search for an industrial steel drum — not just a steel drum. Industrial steel drums are great containers for for the storage or transport of food, chemicals, hazardous materials, and so much more. Steel drums are great for calypso music.

Steel drums, also known as steel pans, are a musical instrument originating from Trinidad and Tobago.

The more traditional name for the instrument is a steel pan, but since the modern steel pan is made from a reused 55 gallon industrial steel drum, people started referring to them as steel drums. As a result, a mere Google search for steel drums turns up mixed results.

Luckily, if you’re in need of an industrial container, the team at Skolnik Industries can help you find exactly what you’re looking for.

Labelmaster’s 13th Annual Dangerous Goods Symposium Breaks a Record!

September 18th, 2018 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: HazMat, Industry News, Skolnik Newsletter

September 5-7, 2018 — Labelmaster hosted a record breaking 350 attendee’s at it’s annual Dangerous Goods Symposium in Rosemont, IL. DGS is an opportunity for members of the Dangerous Goods and Hazmat communities to gather and exchange information about the ever-changing DG regulations in the US and abroad. In addition, DGS also focuses on DG compliance, training, new technologies and all the matters that relate to safe transportation of dangerous goods.

This year, featured speakers came from all around North America including the US and Canada, Europe, Australia, South America and more. The list of speakers included representatives from the US DOT Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), a cadre of domestic and international training organizations, and a host of private manufacturing companies. The conference included both lecture and workshop-style presentations and included excellent opportunities for networking and meeting others in the DG community. Planning ahead, the 14th DGS is planned for September 4-6, 2019 at the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Chicago.

Thank you Labelmaster, for helping to make the transport of dangerous goods safer, every day!

How a 55 Gallon Barrel Measures Up

September 11th, 2018 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Industry News

If Skolnik’s selection of containers were a high school, the 55 gallon barrel or drum would be voted most popular. But it isn’t just us. The 55 US gallon steel drum is an industry favorite and the industry standard. Internationally, it is known as a 208 litre drum and it is the favored container for a wide array of materials and industries. But how does Mr. or Mrs. Popular measure up?

The most common configuration of the 55 gallon drum is an open head drum. These drums are 34.70 inches in height with a diameter of 20.50 inches. The iconic shape is a cylindrical with three hoops, the first of which placed 3 inches from the top curl while the other two hoops are centered on the drum.

Open head 55 gallon drums require a cover gasket and either a lever lock or bolt ring closure mechanism. These parts come together to seal the open head of the popular Skolnik 55 gallon open head steel drum.

A 55 gallon tight head drum is different in that it doesn’t require a closure ring or cover gasket, but rather is sealed with a 2” or ¾” opening in the top head of the drum. It’s through this opening that one can access the interior. Standing at roughly 35.25 inches in height, the tight head drum is slightly taller than the open head, but has the same diameter. The 55 gallon tight head drum features two hoops around the center of the drum.

While these are the standard dimensions of the Skolnik 55 gallon steel drum, there is always room for customization. Changes can be made to the cover fittings, paint, labels, and/or interior poly linings or inserts while still meeting the regulations for UN certification. If a drum does not need to meet UN certifications for its use, larger alterations to specs such as body fittings, closure mechanisms and even the steel gauge combination can occur. At Skolnik, we pride ourselves in delivering the best and strongest container for our clients needs – whether they require UN certification or not.

The 55 gallon drum is used all over the world to store and transport materials in almost any industry. When made properly, this container can safely and securely store a wide range of contents including food substances or hazardous materials. It’s no wonder the 55 gallon drum is most popular.

“Forgive me, for I have Cardinal Zinned”

September 11th, 2018 by Jon Stein

Filed under: Skolnik Newsletter, Wine

That was Randall Grahm, owner and winemaker at Bonny Doon Vineyards, in his keynote speech at this year’s Wines and Vines Packaging Conference. He explained that when he first bottled his Californian Pinot Noir, he went with simple labels, believing that it was better to “let the wine do the salesmanship”. When he began to bottle Rhone varieties in the 1980’s, he began using humor in the labels, such as his famous “Cigare Volant” label with an illustration of a flying saucer flying above a vineyard, based on a French regulation banning flying saucers over vineyards in the Rhone region.

By partnering with well-known artists, and through the use of humor in their wine labels, he saw success; however, he warned the attendees that “cleverness in the extreme isn’t always enough”. He went on to say: “Your wine label is something like a real opportunity to potentially bond with your customer, to create a mini-affinity group”.

Jessica Gaedeke of Nielson Innovations reported that 4,289 new wine items have been launched in the past year. Gaedeke pointed out that making decisions surrounding packaging becomes all the more important. “Only packaging reaches 100% of potential buyers at the first moment of truth”, going on to say that 50% to 80% of purchasing decisions are made at the shelf. All highly influenced by packaging and design.

Another interesting event at the conference was a panel discussion of alternative packaging such as bag-in-box, aluminum cans, Stainless Steel and PET kegs. “The glass bottle has to die at some point”, remarked Nicolas Quille, chief winemaking and operations officer for Crimson Wine Group. Quillle provided a checklist of what to consider in evaluating alternative packaging: size, materials, cleanliness, and recyclability. Skolnik wine barrels are easy to clean and offer excellent reusability. Click here to see the full line of Stainless Steel Winemaking Barrels from Skolnik.