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

Archive for the ‘Cool Stuff’ Category

Skolnik Cited by Chicago Tribune for Participation in Youth Employment

September 20th, 2016 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Cool Stuff, Skolnik Newsletter

All stories of good intentions do not necessarily end as expected. Early in 2016, Dean Ricker, Skolnik’s VP of Sales, became interested in a program to help employ Chicago’s youth.
The Manufacturing Careers Internship Program was launched in 2011 and is responsible for the successful placement of hundreds of youth in gainful employment. The program includes a “boot camp” type of training for the candidates which includes tours to manufacturing companies around Chicago.

Dean offered Skolnik to be a host company and 18 potential interns toured and marveled at our manufacturing process and culture. One student that stood out, Adonis Clayton, was selected to be the Skolnik intern and from the first day of his internship, we witnessed a transformation of character and dedication. From sleeping in his car to insisting on wearing a tie to work every day, Adonis was working to become a gainfully employed Chicago resident. Skolnik employees all championed Adonis as he became known as “Mr. Wonderful.” Furthermore, we saw his talent emerge and he felt attracted to the practice of Engineering.

It was all going well and we allocated time for Adonis to complete his GED. However, in late August, Adonis stopped reporting to work and, we believe, his personal life got in the way of his progress. At this point, his future at Skolnik is unsure but our door is still open. Even if Adnonis chooses not to return to Skolnik, we hope that his time at Skolnik will always serve to help him reach out for a bright future.

You can read the full Tribune story here

Our History in Pictures

August 29th, 2016 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Cool Stuff, Skolnik Newsletter

Skolnik Industries has been one of the most reputable names in the steel drum and packaging arena for nearly a century. Today we have a global market, but it all started in a small, family owned drum reconditioning facility in Chicago. As we approach 90 years of presence in the steel drum community, we have compiled a pictorial history of our company with photos, product brochures, and news events that date back as far as 1943. Originally started circa 1925 as peddlers of wooden barrels, in 1940, the company moved to steel drum reconditioning and as of 1960, solely manufacturing new steel drums. In 1985, the company was bought by Howard Skolnik and in 2012, Howard’s long-time friend, Brian Hand became a shareholder. The focus has been to develop the niche products for unique markets which were not being served by conventional 55 gallon steel drum manufacturers. During these last 30 years, Skolnik has achieved the highest levels of quality manufacturing with a vast array of products and services. Today we operate under ISO 9001:2015 as well as Nuclear Quality Assurance – 1. We participate in the global regulatory arena to “save lives” by helping to prevent hazardous material accidents.

If you would like to see what we’ve been doing for these past 90 years, check out OUR HISTORY at Skolnik.com. We’re proud of our past, working hard in our present, and looking forward to a stimulating future.

Giant Cargo Ship Arrives at US Port!

February 24th, 2016 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Cool Stuff, Industry News, Skolnik Newsletter

On December 26, 2015, the Port of Oakland berthed the largest cargo ship to ever visit the U.S. The CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin, at 1,310-feet nearly a quarter-mile long, tied up at the Port’s Outer Harbor, symbolically opened the Trans-Pacific trade route between Asia and Oakland to megaships.

Until today, megaships carrying 18,000 containers or more have been used exclusively in Asia-Europe trade lanes. Now that the CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin has proven workable in Oakland, other megaships will likely follow. They’re the most cost-effective, fuel efficient and environmentally friendly vessels afloat. The port spent $400 million on dredging and upgrading cranes to handle mega-container ships.

French shipping line CMA-CGM launched the CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin on December 10. CMA CGM officials said they’re deploying the ship in a regular service connecting China with the U.S. West Coast.

Vessel particulars:

  • Ship Builder: Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding (a CSSC’s subsidiary)
  • Deadweight Tonnage: 185,000 tons
  • Year of built: 2015
  • Building cost: $151 million
  • Gross Weight Tonnage: 175,000 tons
  • Net Weight Tonnage: 100,000 tons
  • Container capacity: 18,000 TEU / 1,100 TEU refrigerated containers (reefers)
  • Cargo tonnage 240,000 tons
  • Flag: UK
  • Length: 398 m / 1,305 ft
  • Breadth (Width): 54 m / 177 ft
  • Draught (Draft): 16 m / 53 ft
  • Engines: MAN B&W 11S90ME-C9.2
  • Fuel consumption – 330 tons per day
  • Cruising Speed: 25 kn / 29 mph / 47 km/h
  • Power output: 87,900 hp / 65,500 kW
  • Crew capacity: 27

View this video of the welcoming ceremony.

When Science Meets Steel

January 21st, 2016 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Cool Stuff, Skolnik Newsletter

Steel drums are the workhorse of our global economy. Most commonly the 55 US Gallon aka 45 Imperial Gallon aka 208 Liter drum is the Goldilocks special: not to small, not to big, and just right for a lot of common containment needs. At Skolnik, since most of our drums are used to transport or dispose of dangerous goods, we take great measures to ensure all of our drums are safe, strong, and reliable and meet the necessary UN and DOT requirements. We work with our customers to make sure that their Skolnik drums have received the correct specifications, dimensions, lining, paint, closures and packaging for their particular use. Essentially, we want our drums to maintain their integrity to ensure they can work hard and last long.

In 2010, a group of students put physics to the test and attempted to crush a 55 gallon steel drum on their school’s front lawn. Their destruction weapon of choice: air pressure.

Spoiler alert: they succeeded.

Watch the YouTube video at www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsoE4F2Pb20

It wasn‘t the first time someone has crushed a 55 gallon steel drum with air pressure, it wasn‘t even the first time someone recorded it and posted it on YouTube: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uy-SN5j1ogk, but it is still a fun and enlightening physics experiment.

As steel drum manufacturers, we have to admit that it hurts a little to watch a beautiful barrel be destroyed, but we know that it’s due to these types of destructive testing that earn steel drums their reputation for durability. We never claim our products are indestructible. What we do promise is that our team will work with you to discover and manufacture the best container or transport vessel for your needs and that a Skolnik container is certain to get the job done safely, reliably and meet all necessary requirements.

Now, we appreciate the occasional science experiment, and who doesn’t like to watch YouTube videos of things getting smashed or destroyed (When you have a chance, we highly recommend watching this front load washer carnage: www.youtube.com/watch?v=dq6T5BojXc8).

Science Vs. Steel

January 11th, 2016 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Cool Stuff, Stainless Steel

The 55 gallon industrial steel drum is the workhorse of our drum lineup. It’s the Goldilocks special: not to small, not to big, and just right for a lot of common containment needs. At Skolnik, we take great measures to ensure all of our drums are safe, strong, reliable and meet the necessary UN and DOT requirements. We work with our clients to make sure that the Skolnik drums they receive have the correct treatment, lining and closures for their particular use. Essentially, we want our drums to maintain their integrity to ensure they can work hard and last long.

 

That said, we appreciate the occasional science experiment, and who doesn’t like to watch YouTube videos of things getting smashed or destroyed (When you have a chance, we highly recommend watching this front load washer carnage.

 

A group of students put physics to the test and attempted to crush a 55 gallon steel drum on their school’s front lawn. Their destruction weapon of choice: air pressure.

 

Spoiler alert: they succeeded.

It wasn’t the first time someone has crushed a 55 gallon steel drum with air pressure, it wasn’t even the first time someone recorded it and posted it on YouTube, but it is still a fun and enlightening physics experiment.

 

As steel drum manufacturers, we have to admit that watching a beautiful barrel be destroyed hurt our hearts a little. We never claim our products are indestructible, not even our workhorse, the 55 gallon steel drum. What we do promise is that our team will work with you to discover and manufacture the best container or transport vessel for your needs and that a Skolnik container is guaranteed to get the job done safely, reliably and meet all necessary requirements.

Skolnik’s Reza Tanha featured in Sports Illustrated Walk-on by Kansas State

November 17th, 2015 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Cool Stuff, Skolnik Newsletter

Lots of programs pride themselves on being walk-on friendly. But the walk-on program at Kansas State is part of the team’s identity, and has been since Coach Bill Snyder took over in 1989 and engineered one of the biggest turnarounds in college football history. From his two lengthy stints as coach at K-State, from 1989 to 2005 and from 2009 to the present), it’s tough for Snyder to pick a favorite walk-on story. His favorite is about a linebacker in whom no one believed. No one, that is, except Bill Snyder.

Reza Tanha, currently Skolnik’s VP of Engineering and Operations, was a 6-foot, 190-pounder from Gridley, Kan., population 300. When Snyder got to K-State he told his assistants that he didn’t want to know which players had the team’s 45 scholarships, or who was on aid versus who wasn’t. It was a brief conversation that left a lasting impression, “I just want to tell you how much I appreciate you,” Tanha told Snyder. “I haven’t played much, but you’ve got me into three games so far—and I know I’m not a very good player. But you treat us just like everyone else.”

Tanha played just the 1989 season before graduating. Each weekend, he unfurls his Wildcats flag, pulls on his K-State T-shirt and finds his team on TV. Almost three decades removed from playing, he feels a special connection to every walk-on who comes through the program. At most schools, the walk-on label signifies a perceived lack of talent. In Manhattan, it’s an elevated status of sorts, a special fraternity. Eight years ago, Tanha—now living in a Chicago suburb—returned to Kansas to go turkey hunting. While there he accompanied a fellow K-State graduate to a local banquet where Snyder was the keynote speaker. Tanha approached Snyder before the event to say hello, and stuck out his hand. “Hey, coach, you probably don’t remember me, but I’m …”
“Reza Tanha,” Snyder interjected. “Linebacker. It’s so good to see you!”

Read the entire Sports Illustrated interview about Coach Snyder and Reza