Spring Conference and Networld + Interop were both excellent events for the
communications industry professionals. BICSI boasted a record-breaking turnout of more than
4,200 attendees… and the exhibitors were all smiles. The presentations were
top notch and actually could compete with the Las Vegas distractions. Networld
+ Interop was filled with a bonanza of technical miracles. Many of the vendors
exhibiting at this venue offered a glimpse into the next decade of
possibilities. The overall impact was phenomenal. A comment overheard on the
floor in the exhibit hall said it all: "Who would have ever dreamed we
would be at 10G on copper." What's next?
We had the opportunity
to see the entire array of capabilities from Fluke Networks at Networld +
Interop. We were impressed by the amazing capability of the full family of
products from Fluke Networks. All of these systems were functionalized in a
massive working network. The representatives of Computer Associates explained
the augmented capabilities of their software systems in combination with Fluke
portion of the booth, Fluke Networks displayed datacom tools for copper and
fiber. At the other eight stations, the focus was on network analysis and
management. A new portable network analysis tool, NetTool VoIP, showed how to
quickly test communication between devices, including a switch and a VoIP
Event Network (eNet) is one of the largest mobile civilian networks in the
world, with more than 90 switches, 3,500 devices, and 12,000 nodes, providing
connectivity to more than 375 Interop exhibitors, conference rooms, and meeting
rooms, and serving over 17,500 attendees. In addition to testing every drop in
the net, Fluke Networks was the Distributed Analysis and Monitoring supplier
for eNet. FNET's SuperVision Console was deployed in the Network Operations
Center (NOC), where it gathered data from 25 remote Fluke Networks' Workgroup
Analyzers distributed throughout the show floor and meeting rooms.
show Fluke Networks announced product integrations with Computer Associates.
FNET's OptiView Integrated Network Analyzer teamed with CA's Unicenter Network
and Systems Management to monitor the entire event network. Unicenter provided
high-level information for layers 2-5, while OptiView INA diagnosed layer 1
issues. Many time problems could be corrected before users noticed anything
was wrong. CA's Help Desk program was teamed with Fluke Networks' EtherScope
Assistant to remotely receive, resolve and close trouble tickets while the show
administrator that has not had the opportunity to see this fully functional
systems solution is really missing out.
definitely evolving into an organization with a much broader view than just
cabling. There are
many issues and products fighting for market validation. For example: fiber,
copper, wireless, VOIP, security, safety, environmental, and then bringing them
all together. Adding the issue of dealing with communications on a global
scale, we must consider the rules of the road (codes and standards) where the
applications are installed. The rules in other countries may vary greatly from
The world of
automated building systems is pulling the infrastructure industry into the
world of commercial real estate. Names like BOMA, NAIOP, NECA, CABA, ACUTA,
AFCOM, and a myriad of other organizations are gravitating to the world of IBS
(Integrated Building Systems). Smart buildings are an imperative to remain
competitive in the future. There are so many advantages to this design concept
that many companies are already considering how to capture the value through
systems integration and automation.
I have a
personal agenda: "Safety Is Too Important To Ignore". In all of our
efforts to build the communications infrastructure of the future, we should
weave the safety issues into the fabric of our designs. Lives and health are
too expensive to contemplate otherwise.
just my opinion
Heard On The Street" column
Jacksonville, FL(904) 645-9077
More Than 85,000 Specifiers Get A New Hammer
periods where the codes and standards are relatively stable and the answers are
universally available. Today we face a changing communications world. The
standards are struggling to keep up with the technological advances. The codes
are also going through changes that affect the communications cabling
industry. Who ya gonna call? Ghost Busters? I don't think so.
At the BICSI
Spring Conference we had the privilege to get the full scoop on a set of
solutions to meet the challenges of a constantly changing environment for the
interviewed Bob Weiland, Graybar Commercial Market Manager about their new
improved consultants and specifier’s service, Graybar VIP Design Online™. This
is the first web-based multi-vendor structured cabling design and budgeting
tool. The VIP Design Online™ tool may provide a 25 percent or greater increase
in productivity with fewer errors. Seasoned veterans of the specification
world already know that even simple errors can result in huge problems. We
think this tool offers a better barrier to errors than anything we have seen in
years. The system allows the consultant or the contractor who is fulfilling
the role of specifier to provide a higher level of accuracy and extremely
professional image to their package.
At one time
or another, many specifiers and bidders have found their designs in the hands
of the competition. It happens. This Graybar VIP Design Online™ service is
unique in its offering and its individual security capability. No one else has
access to your designs in the VIP Design Online™ program. www.graybar.com/vip.
simple point-and-click interface provides Graybar’s authorized consultants with
the ability to let the market know them, their company, their reputation and
their level of accuracy with a precise professional specification. This tool
also allows the user to save on the time it takes to design, configure and
budget structured cabling projects while reducing errors. For the first time
within a Web-based design and budgeting tool, consultants will have access to a
centralized repository of more than 8,000 data communications products and
their prices. Included in the database are 15 interoperable cabling and
connectivity product lines proven to exceed industry standards by the Graybar
Verified Independently for Performance testing program. Consultants have the
ability to manage multiple projects through the interface.
Online weaves together current content on data communications products with
their proper configurations. This software was developed leveraging the eXalt
Solutions software platform. Graybar selected eXalt Solutions because of its
unique capabilities in building solution designs with technical products and
dynamically creating complex bills of material, graphics, budgets and reports.
offering is truly unique – we have not seen any other software suited for the
needs of our consultant partners. With Design Online, a consultant can assemble
a VIP design in a fraction of the time with more accuracy than using
conventional methods. We are excited to offer this leading-edge technology
while extending VIP’s leadership position,” explained Graybar Commercial Market
Manager Bob Weiland.
Online was a perfect fit for our software platform,” stated eXalt Solutions
President Leslie Swanson. Consultants can focus on what they do best – design –
while removing the unnecessary clerical spreadsheet entry and phone work in the
budgeting process to dramatically shorten project design times.”
Mike Keeling, President of Data Site Consortium, Inc. said, “Having reviewed
the Beta version of Design Online, I am looking forward to using its
capabilities to respond better and quicker to my clients’ cabling and
connectivity needs. The site is intuitive to use, and its ability to save all
related project information makes it truly an effective tool.”
Graybar VIP Design Online
One-Stop Shopping Provides Up-to-Date, Multi-Vendor Structured
Cabling Product Data: For the first time, consultants can access multi-vendor structured
cabling solutions and pricing in one convenient location. Gone is the
time-consuming process of searching multiple Web sites and catalogs. The
Web-based configurator houses the most current data on Graybar VIP cabling and
connectivity products. Included are racks and cabinets for structured cabling
design, budget and bill of material creation “on the fly.”
Self-Service Environment Enhances Productivity and Customer
Rather than wasting time calling, faxing and e-mailing distributors and
contractors, consultants can access pricing and product information online
without delay. This also helps keep projects under wraps.
Templates Streamline Bill of Material Development: Consultants can choose from hundreds
of ready-made templates to build material lists. Using templates is faster and
more accurate than copying and pasting data into spreadsheets.
Online Visual Dramatically Accelerates Approval Process: With the dynamic graphic interface,
consultants can show clients their design earlier and online. This may shorten
the typical project timeframe from start to finish by more than 50 percent.
Design and Budget Updates Happen Instantaneously During Client
As consultants design, the system generates a bill of material and budget
reports at the same time. Updates happen instantly during project design
sessions with clients.
“Goof-proof” Configurator Eliminates Design and Budget Errors: Now it is virtually impossible for
consultants to “design in” mistakes. Budget-based rules monitor rack-space
consumption and faceplate port allocation to ensure more accurate designs and
Powerful Search with Rich Repository of Product Content and
Reference Materials: Consultants can find the right part quickly without having to navigate
through dozens of screens of useless data. Powerful parametric search
capabilities make it possible. Drawings and reference materials are available
in an instant.
Graybar, a Fortune 500
corporation and one of the largest employee-owned companies in North America, is a leader in the distribution of high quality electrical, telecommunications and networking products, and an expert provider of related
supply chain management and logistics services. Through its network of more
than 250 North American distribution facilities, it stocks and sells products from
thousands of manufacturers, serving as the vital link to hundreds of thousands
of customers. www.graybar.com
Contractor Magazine Focuses on Safety In Their May 2005 Issue
The May 2005
issue of Electrical Contractor Magazine is about SAFETY. The
President's message reminds the reader that May is National Electrical
Safety Month. NECA (www.necanet.org)
has been a proud co-sponsor of the Electrical Safety Foundation International's
efforts to increase public awareness of the hazards of electricity ever since
the annual observance was inaugurated many years ago. We laud the NECA
organization and the contractors who use this special opportunity to share the
information provided through http://electrical-safety.org.
Safety is a
pertinent topic for electrical and communications contractors. Contractors
deal with OSHA, workers' compensation, and other safety issues. The big change
is in the revision to NFPA 70E. The standard has been around for 25 years, but
its effect on the industry will be felt more strongly now because of the
revision. If you don't have this issue, the May issue of Electrical Contractor
Magazine will be posted online in a couple of weeks. The June 2005 issue will
likewise be a blockbuster, packed with valuable information for the reader.
No matter how
much is written about Fire Stopping, this important safety issue is often
neglected or improperly installed. Installers of firestopping systems should
have verifiable training in order to insure the systems are installed to
meet the safety and code requirements. One place that any contractor can get a
training package for firestopping installation, at no charge, is www.uniquefirestop.com. In the May
2005 issue, Fire Stopping - What Every Contractor Needs To Know, by
Wayne D. Moore is an outstanding article that summarizes these challenges as
well as we have ever seen. Read it, learn it, and practice it. Safety is too
important to ignore.
safety, this month you can add your voice to the safety process. Don’t let the
big corporations and their shills rule the outcome of the NEC (National
Electrical Code) revisions with their commercial agendas. NFPA members (of
more than 6 months) can vote on the open floor and address their comments to the
membership on important issues. In a way, June is safety month also. NFPA
World Safety Conference & Exposition® Las Vegas, NV June 6-10, 2005
Mandalay Bay Resort & Convention Center. www.nfpa.org
Contractor, the No. 1 trade publication in the electrical contracting industry,
now offers advertisers the only in-depth reader profile in its category.
Published by the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) on their
website www.ecmag.com , Electrical
Contractor’s “2004 Electrical Contractor Profile Study” pinpoints management
gender, race and age diversity, brand specification, customer hobbies,
education, work area trends, growing revenue sources and more.
“Our reader profile now offers advertisers in our category the only, complete
picture of the electrical contracting industry,” said Electrical Contractor
Publisher John Maisel. “To increase its value, this year’s study details new
reader specifics to increase customer knowledge, and become a more highly
effective revenue tool,” he said.
Conducted earlier this year by postal mail and the first time via the Internet,
the study generated 865 usable surveys among its subscribers. The majority of
the surveyed contracting firms are small in terms of their revenue and their
number of employees: 62 percent have between one and nine employees, and 71
percent have annual revenues of less than $1 million. As an incentive to
participate, Electrical Contractor contributed $5 to charity for each completed
First, in this report, the survey examined the downtime for electrical
contractors. Widening potential ad revenue from non-trade products and
services, home improvement topped the list, with 59 percent of those surveyed
reporting they like to work around the house in their spare time. Travel came
in second at 51 percent. In third place, 39 percent of contractors chose
hunting and fishing as their favorite outdoor activities. Watching sports came
in fourth, music and theater placed fifth and woodworking came in sixth.
Playing golf ranked seventh, followed by an interest in classic/antique cars,
playing sports, cooking and wine and auto racing.
Specifying Brands, Purchasing Sources / Habits, Computer Use
On average, contractors specify a single brand about 20 percent of the time,
and far more common among firms with one to nine employees than among larger
firms. In all other cases, other factors include multiple brands, “or equal
to,” or performance specified.
Brand discretion was another, key area. Overall, the survey shows that
contractors decide the brand chosen more than 70 percent of the time.
Contractors have the highest level of brand selection in smaller firms, and
somewhat less input in larger firms.
Not surprisingly, electrical distributors account for the lion’s share of
installation dollars. Although warehouse home centers are a distant second,
they account for a relatively small percentage of spending firms with 20 or
more employees. Almost all of the contractors buy from multiple sources, and
the number of channels grows with firm size.
Firms with one to nine employees are more likely than average to utilize two
outlets, while firms with 20-99 or 100+ employees are more likely than average
to use all four of the channels included in the survey (possibly due to larger
companies having locations in more places and involved in more different types
of work). Additionally, firms with 100+ employees spend more of their total
purchase dollar online.
Larger firms (20-99 or 100+ employees) are both more likely to use computers in
multiple ways, and to cite each particular use compared with firms with one to
nine employees. From highest to lowest, computer use comprises: Internet
access/e-mail, word processing, accounting/payroll, estimating, job cost
control/analysis, scheduling service work/logistics, CAD, equipment/tool
inventory control, project collaboration (with other companies) and fleet
Work Trends: Type, Volume
On average, 50 percent of respondents said that their firm had worked in eight
ore more of 17 listed 17 project types. Traditional power/lighting projects
were mentioned most frequently by about 80 percent to 90 percent; backup power
and communications/data systems were cited by 60 percent; fire/life safety
systems were cited by almost half; energy management/power quality and two
types of security formed the next tier at 30 to 40 percent; fiber optics
(datacom and lighting) and/or wireless networks were mentioned by 20 to 30
percent, and alternative energy and biometrics were mentioned least often, by
less than 10 percent.
Regardless of the types of work they performed in 2003, respondents estimated
how they expect their firm’s future volume of work in each area to change over
the next, few years. Among category participants, larger firms (20+ employees)
are most likely to predict increases across almost all of the categories. Among
category non-participants, firms with one to nine employees predict future
growth in backup power, communications/data systems and fiber optics (datacom
and lighting) work. In contrast, firms with 100+ employees are more likely than
average to predict future growth in fuel cells and wind generation.
Revenue Sources / Company Sales
Although the respondents’ firms are involved in all construction sectors, 40
percent of their revenue comes from new construction, with approximately 30
percent each from modernization/retrofit or maintenance/service/repair;
however, maintenance/service/repair plays a greater role to smaller firms (one
to nine employees) while new construction plays a proportionally greater role
as firm size (number of employees) increases.
Respondents confirmed that electrical power distribution accounts for the
largest percent of company sales. Security and life safety work accounts for a
greater percentage of revenue as company size increases. Firms with 10-19
employees report that total building automation accounts for more revenue than
among companies of any, other size.
Across the total sample, contractors get more of their business from CII
(commercial, industrial, institutional and public places) than from residential
projects. Non-building projects (airports, highway, power lines and other)
account for about six percent of the contractor business.
Dramatic differences occur in the types of work performed by larger vs. smaller
firms. Residential construction accounts for a much greater proportion of work
among smaller companies (one to nine employees), while CII projects account for
more of the work of larger firms. Non-building work is much more prevalent in
large firms. Overall, almost half (approximately 46 percent) of contractors’
revenue comes from design/build work (and particularly important to firms with
one to nine employees).
Gender and Age Trends
Regarding gender, the non-clerical jobs—particularly journeymen
electricians—are overwhelmingly male. While 42 percent of contracting firms
employ women, however, almost three in 10 firms (28 percent) have female
employees that are not clerical. Firms with non-clerical female employees are
more likely to be mid-sized: those with 20+ employees and/or those with
revenues in excess of $1 million. The next, largest percentage of women are
executives (owners and proprietors).
Revealing that younger contractors are not yet filling the pipeline, 60 percent
are between the ages of 35 and 54, with 83 percent between the ages of 35 and
64 (regardless of company size). Across the total sample, the contractors
average 48.6 years and have been in the contracting industry an average of 24.6
Electrical Contractor Magazine has definitely got the goods. www.ecmag.com
introduces the Wirewolf and the Claw at BICSI Conference in Vegas/p>
Cabling Systems (Arlington, VA) has released new enhancements for the Beast,
the company's flagship portable system that separates, organizes and labels
cable off the reel. To you non-installer types, this may be a dry subject.
However, to the contractors and installers that actually handle these complex
cable installations, this is a very sexy subject.
the BICSI Spring Conference in Las Vegas, we spoke with one of the top rated
experts in cable installation. Bruce Nardone, BICSI Master Instructor, told us
that training and the right tools are essential to delivering the quality and
bringing the job in "on time and under budget". Bruce said that he
has thoroughly reviewed the new Beast Cabling System technology. He is
confident that it will contribute a significant level of capabilities to the
installation process and end result. "The BICSI training together with the
right tools equals a very powerful competitive edge". www.bicsi.org
The Beast Cabling System enables the pulling of up to 48 cables from
individual reels into cable pathways, which conserves time and materials,
reduces errors and ensures uniform installation practices.
Both new additions from the Arlington, VA firm, include The Wirewolf, which mounts in front
of the Beast and provides a quick way to sort and organize cable for
termination on patch panels or blocks.
"The process of pulling cable normally includes back-feeding disorganized
batches of cable to the closet, where you face the time-consuming task of
sorting cables for termination," said Greg Bramham, Beast's vice-president
of business development.
The other new addition is The Claw, which reduces the common problems of twisted
or damaged cable and broken lead strings during cable pulling.
contractor, that we talked to after they had seen the live demonstration for
this system, told us that this tool could increase their profits by saving
time. Also the Beast Cabling System could give their installers a major boost
in tackling the craft intensive requirements of handling fiber and
copper at the new high performance levels including the 10G arena. "Doing it right… the
first time" saves hours of chasing ghosts when the tester results give you
that nightmarish screen that says, "FAIL". www.beastcablingsystems.com
Graybar Announces "Enable the CableSM"
nation’s leading distributor of communications and electrical products and
related supply chain management and logistics services, announces "Enable
the CableSM". This educational program is designed to help
network architects, designers, contractors and technicians understand and
leverage the value UTP cable brings to the construction of all building
sub-systems or networks. Graybar provided more " Enable the Cable"
information on Sunday, May 1, during the Spring BICSI Conference at the Mirage
Hotel, Las Vegas, NV. Technology experts and engineers answered questions and
assisted with technology implementation.
we wire buildings using two four-pair cables terminated eighteen inches above
the floor as outlined in the cabling standards documents,“ said Karl Griffith,
director, reseller markets, Graybar. “We can no longer think of UTP cables
solely for voice and data transmission. UTP can also be used for
application-dependent building services dedicated to a specific purpose.”
sub-systems, including security, physical access, lighting control and building
automation, are a mixture of analog and digital technologies communicating via
multiple protocols over individual, isolated networks. These sub-systems are
migrating into an integrated IP network carrying specialized building protocols
encapsulated into IP packets. The monitoring and management of these new
networks will soon become the function of the building Information Technology
"Enable the Cable" will demonstrate the use of UTP cables in the CCTV
environment. Analog CCTV cameras can be wired easily with UTP cable at twice
the recommended distance outlined in TIA/EIA-568-B while maintaining signal
integrity. UTP cables can terminate on CCTV cameras in ceilings and high on
walls to meet the needs of the building owner. Graybar has partnered with
Berk-Tek, NVT and Pelco to develop the Enable the Cable architecture for CCTV
“It is our
plan to expand the Enable the Cable program to address the construction of
other building networks,” said Karl Griffith. “Regardless of the technology,
networks constructed of high-quality Category 5e or Category 6 UTP cables can
serve the building owner well into the future with a solid migration path to a
complete IP building system network.” www.graybar.com.
Invites You To Attend One Of Its BIQ Ranking Systems Workshops
you to attend one of its BIQ Ranking Systems workshops (Intelligent Building
Ranking Systems), being held at Realcomm 2005, in Anaheim, CA.
Ranking System is an evaluation/assessment protocol and a guide for integrating
intelligent building technologies. The aim of an affordable and easy to use
online Intelligent Building ranking tool is to increase market penetrability of
Intelligent Building technology with building owners, operators, managers and
designers by demonstrating value and providing guidance.
Sunday, June 26; 3.00 pm – 5.00 pm, Grand
Californian Hotel; or
Workshop #2: Wednesday, June 29; 9.00 am – 12.00
noon, Grand Californian Hotel
--Introduction to CABA and IIBC Task Force Efforts.
--Presentation on the CABA efforts to Date on the BIQ.
--Solicit and Review New Technology Additions to BIQ Criteria.
--Building Assessment Tools and Ranking Methods Discussion.
--Demonstrate Green Globe BETA CABA BIQ Questionnaire.
--BIQ Report Review and Attribute Trade Off Exercise.
--Discussion, BIQ User Sign Up and Survey Completion.
US (CABA members save $25.) Cost includes the workshop, reception and 1
free BIQ Ranking (valued at $700. US and is valid for 1 year).
link to: https://www.caba.org/estore/index.html,
and click on Purchase CABA Products then Workshops. In order to take
advantage of your CABA member discount, you must first log into the Research
Library/Members Lounge. Contact David Dern at 613.993.6760, or by email: email@example.com if you need assistance.
Realcomm 2005, take advantage of the Intelligent Building sessions, being held
in conjunction with CABA’s CONNECT 2005.
when you register for Realcomm 2005 (http://www.realcomm.com/anaheim.htm)
using CABA’s discount code: RC05CABA1.
LEADERS HONORED AT 2005 NAED ANNUAL MEETING
National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED) honored four industry
leaders at the Opening General Session of NAED’s Annual Meeting on Monday, May
16, 2005, at the Boston Marriott Copley, in Boston, Mass.
David H. Crum, CEO of Crum Electric Supply Co., Inc., Casper, Wyo., received NAED’s highest honor, the 2005 NAED Arthur W. Hooper Award, which is
presented to an individual who has led an exceptional career in electrical
distribution spanning many years.
was one of the first industry leaders to recognize and promote the importance
of technology in developing the electrical industry’s electronic commerce
infrastructure. He led the creation of several e-commerce initiatives during
his term as NAED chairman and was instrumental in founding the Industry Data
Exchange Association (IDEA) in 1999 to manage the flow of data through the
his 34 years in the industry, Crum has been active in NAED, serving as Western
Region vice president (1992-94), NAED Foundation Board of Directors (1995-97),
NAED Chairman of the Board of Directors (1996-97), and IDEA Chairman of the
Board (1998-2000). Crum has also been honored with NAED’s Western Region
Distributor of the Year (1996) and NAED Distinguished Service Award (1999). He
was also the first distributor to receive the National Electrical Manufacturers
Association’s Kite & Key Award in 1998. Crum was also named Wyoming’s “Small Business Person of the Year” in 1982.
Stuart M. Irby, president of Stuart C. Irby Company, Jackson, Miss., received the 2005 NAED Distinguished Service Award, which recognizes
outstanding and dedicated service to the association and the electrical
the third-generation in his family’s business, Irby has led his company from
$35 million in revenue to $380 million, from 9 branches to 33, and from 232
employees to 664. During his 27 years in the electrical distribution industry,
Irby has served the industry in a variety of ways. His company was one of the
founders of IDEA, and Irby has consistently been a champion of the initiative
throughout its development. He was IDEA Chairman of the Board (2002-2004), IDEA
Vice-Chair (2000-2002) and IDEA Director (1997 – 2001). In addition, Irby also
has participated as a member of the NAED Foundation’s Channel Advantage
Partnership council (2004 – present), NAED Board of Directors member
(2002-2004), NAED Membership Committee member (1991) and NAED area chairman
(1988)., Irby is also active in his community as a volunteer on the boards of
numerous organizations including a local college, leadership development
organizations, Chamber of Commerce, the symphony, YMCA, Civic Club and church.
Edwin Kanner, chairman emeritus of American Insulated Wire Corp./A
Leviton Company was presented with the 2005 NAED Award of Merit, which
recognizes an associate company or individual that has been exceptionally
active in promoting and supporting the tenets and goals of NAED.
the past 51 years, Kanner has actively encouraged communication and cooperation
between manufacturers and distributors. He has supported NAED throughout his
career, as well as serving on the NEMA board of governors twice, most recently
from 1999 to 2001. Kanner has also received several awards for his ardent
support of the manufacturing network and electrical distribution industry,
including the NEMA Kite & Key Award, Scott Award, GEM Award and NEMRA Preston Award.
Francis Piscitelli, senior vice president of sales and service for
OSRAM SYLVANIA was presented with the 2005 NAED Associate Award. The
award honors an individual in the electrical manufacturing business who
has been exceptionally active in promoting wholesale distribution as the best
channel of electrical products and services.
his more than 30 years in the industry, Piscitelli has served the industry in a
variety of areas, including the NAED Manufacturing Advisory Council and, most
recently, as the chair of the NAED Manufacturer Special Pricing Authorizations
(SPA) Task Force. Throughout NAED’s initiative to improve SPA process
efficiencies, he has devoted significant time to the effort, including speaking
at the regional conferences. In addition, he is a board member of the Home
Safety Council, Affiliated Distributors’ Electrical Supplier Advisory Council
and the Siemens Sales and Marketing Advisory Council. www.naed.org
Great Week of Discovery
By: Mike Holt
I have spend
the past 20 years researching and testing the concepts of what others have
written as it relates to Grounding. I have found that much of what I learned
about grounding is not really accurate, at least not in relationship to
premises wiring within the scope of the National Electrical Code.
I made lots of new discoveries based on some old historical papers that I
received. I think I found the origination of the 25 ohm resistance for a ground
rod, why a 6 AWG wire is used for a ground rod, and about where this concept of
zero reference might have originated. By the way, the resistance of 8 AWG run
seven miles at 25C is 24.64 ohms.
of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers", "EARTH WIRES OR
THE EARTH AS AN ELECTRIC COMPLETER."
Thomas A. Edison was heavily involved with the telegraphic system (before the
light bulb), and he invented the fire alarm mechanism and signaling apparatus
Now the plot
thickens… the Telegraphic industry uses the earth as a return conductor and
Edison is involved in the Telegraphic industry. According to a good buddy of
mine (Don Zipse), when Thomas Alva Edison started his electric illuminating
company and began the electrical distribution system, he used the earth for the
return conductor. This uncontrolled flow of electric current over the earth
resulted in shocking horses and his employees as they dug along side of the
underground distribution system. Horse pulled traction companies' employees
working on the tracks received electric shocks, especially when separating the
based on original Ralph Lee (great engineer) writing, I figured out what the
Code means about 'stabilize system voltage to earth during normal operation
[250.4(A)(1)]. I'm so glad because nobody I know what this mean anyway. By the
way it has to do with electric utilities and ungrounded systems, with miles and
miles of overhead conductors, not premises wiring! So basically it's irreverent.
all of this, but just important (at least to me), I also figured out how a
ground rod (earthing) could be used to reduce voltage on the metal case of a
transformer that was installed in the 1890's. So basically grounding (earthing)
the case of a metal transformer is just something we do based on conditions
from over 100 years ago that don't apply today.
Then in the
middle of the night, I figured out how placing a ground wire (connected to a
ground rod) in a plastic animal water trough could be used to reduce voltage in
the water so that the animals would drink it!
basically for today's grounding (earthing, such as driving a ground rod) still
doesn't do anything we (or at least I) thought it did to make anything safe in
a home, establish a zero reference, or any of the other myths we carry on http://www.mikeholt.com/mhgvb
currently working on a new book that probably will be titled Grounding
Theory and the Real History of Grounding. It will be out in time for my
Grounding versus Bonding seminars this fall http://www.mikeholt.com/seminarnew.php?id=2005#October
Link Analyzer and Protocol Expert Win Award
Networks today announced that its OptiView Link Analyzer network monitoring
device, combined with Protocol Expert Plus software, has been named winner for
a 2005 Well-Connected Award in the category of Gigabit Analyzer Probe by CMP
Media LLC's Network Computing magazine. Optiview Link Analyzer provides
real-time analysis and line rate packet capture for full duplex Gigabit
Ethernet links. This capability is a necessity for organizations that need to
troubleshoot critical centralized applications.
a winner of Network Computing's Annual Well-Connected Awards illustrates how
OptiView Link Analyzer has proven itself as an effective application monitoring
and troubleshooting tool for many of our largest enterprise customers,"
said Robert Finlay, Fluke Networks Product Manager. "We're happy to see
our product recognized for its ability to provide accurate timing and traffic
the winners of the Network Computing Well-Connected Awards were honored at a
gala event held on the first evening of one of the industry's largest trade
shows, NetWorld+Interop 2005 Las Vegas. All winners were highlighted in the
April 28th issue of Network Computing and also on Network Computing Online at
Link Analyzer remotely monitors and captures traffic, at full line rate, on
full-duplex Gigabit Ethernet links, to provide accurate application timing and
traffic analysis. Designed for network management staff in the IT operation
center, the OptiView Link Analyzer works with OptiViewtm Protocol Expert and
OptiViewtm Console to provide full visibility of traffic on high performance,
switched Ethernet links.
Protocol Expert Plus is a scalable protocol analysis and monitoring solution
for network field service staff and core data center engineers. Its VoIP option
allows real-time, passive VoIP quality of service analysis.
the 11th year in a row, Network Computing is recognizing the most outstanding
tech products and services in the networking and IT world in our Well-Connected
award April 28th issue," says Mike Lee, editor of Network Computing
magazine. "The awards are a snapshot in time, the best of what we
evaluated over 12 months in our Real-World Labs -- more than 134 finalists in
more than 44 categories were named. The winners were announced in our April
Receives Donation of Beast™ Cabling System
Cabling Systems, innovator of systems and processes that result in more
efficient and more durable installation of cable, announced that it has donated
a complete Beast™ system to BICSI for use in BICSI’s Tampa-based training
facility. The donation is valued at more than $15,000.
If you were
fortunate enough to attend the BICSI Spring Conference and Expo you may have
seen the booth for Beast Cabling Systems. This booth had an almost continual
live demonstration of the new technology for the Beast Cabling System products
including the Wirewolf and the Claw. Several of the contractors who watched
the demonstration commented on how they could use this system to increase
profitability and job quality. The preliminary numbers using this system are
The Beast is
a portable system that separates, organizes, and labels all types of structured
cable off the reel. The system enables pulling of up to 48 cables from
individual reels into cable pathways, conserving time and materials, reducing
errors, and ensuring uniform installation practices for any crew on any job.
the process of pulling cable using the Beast represents the next-step in how
all contractors will install structured cable in the future,” said Greg
Bramham, Vice President of Business Development. “We know BICSI offers its
students the most complete and up-to-date training available and were pleased
that BICSI has accepted this donation for use in its training classes,” he
not-for-profit association dedicated to promoting excellence in the Information
Transport Systems (ITS) industry, accepts donations of cable, connectors, tools
and other products and services to enhance its training and world-class training
facility in Tampa. Accepting the Beast for use in the classroom represents
BICSI’s continued focus on bringing the latest practices to students and to the
important that we keep our members and other students aware of new tools,
technologies, and processes that can help them be more efficient in their
business,” said Patricia A. Boyland, Director of Professional Development and
Credentialing for BICSI. “Donations such as the Beast ensure that BICSI
maintains its leadership position as a provider of standards-based,
vendor-neutral training for cabling professionals working in the Information
Transport Systems business,” Ms. Boyland said. www.beastcablingsystems.com - www.bicsi.org
Introduces New TrueNet Midspan Power-over-Ethernet Controllers
ADCT; today introduced new TrueNet® Midspan Power-over-Ethernet (PoE)
Controllers featuring dual compliance with IEEE 802.3af and legacy
Voice-over-IP (VoIP) devices as well as optional N+1 redundant powering
capabilities. ADC will showcase these solutions at BICSI Spring Conference in
Las Vegas, May 2-5, in booth #720/722 and at NetWorld+Interop 2005 in Las
Vegas, May 3-5, in booth #839.
TrueNet Midspan PoE Controllers allow enterprise network managers to power VoIP
phones, WiFi access points, IP security cameras, and other devices without upgrading
or replacing Ethernet switches and structured cabling.
product's newest features accelerate VoIP deployment by overcoming significant
powering obstacles traditionally faced by enterprise network managers:
standards compatibility and redundant powering.
IEEE 802.3af standards, leading manufacturers developed VoIP telephones with
various proprietary standards for line powering over Ethernet cabling,"
said John Schmidt, product manager for ADC. "ADC's TrueNet Midspan PoE
Controllers automatically detect the presence of legacy VoIP devices and inject
appropriate power, enabling enterprise network managers to efficiently deploy
NetWorld+Interop, ADC will conduct a live demonstration of the product's dual
compatibility features by powering a legacy Cisco® 7960 IP Phone and an IEEE
802.3af compliant Cisco 7971G-GE phone via a single TrueNet Midspan PoE
lifeline telephony requirements, ADC's TrueNet Midspan PoE Controllers feature
field upgradeable N+1 redundant powering capabilities. Delivering up to 15.4
Watts of power per port and featuring redundant and load sharing 400-watt power
supplies, the controllers ensure consistent fault-free powering for critical
voice circuits. The redundant power supplies may be field upgraded and up to
five panels can be daisy-chained and controlled via one modular SNMP card and a
single IP address. www.adc.com/truenet www.adc.com
Networks Announces Partnership with Ipswitch, Inc. to Offer New Network
Fluke Networks, a provider of innovative solutions for the testing, monitoring
and analysis of enterprise and telecommunications networks, today announced it
has entered a partnership with Ipswitch, Inc., a leading developer of network
management, messaging and file transfer solutions, to produce a unique
real-time solution for network administrators who need a powerful proactive and
reactive solution to network problem identification and resolution.
The combination of Key Device Watch, based on Ipswitch's popular WhatsUp®
network monitoring program, with Fluke Networks' portable network test
solutions provides a streamlined approach to network monitoring and
troubleshooting. Key Device Watch proactively monitors and identifies any
problems on a network on a 24/7 basis. Fluke Networks' LinkRunner and NetTool
can troubleshoot an identified problem area with instant information about the
connectivity and performance of the network.
Lisa Schwartz, Fluke Networks Business Development Manager, stated that
Ipswitch's compatibility with Fluke Networks' NetTool Inline Network Tester
will extend the troubleshooting needs of technicians. "We are pleased to
be an integral part of the NetTool Key Device Watch bundle. This partnership
will help our customers attain increased visibility to network monitoring and
troubleshooting," said Schwartz.
"We are excited to partner with Fluke Networks to provide the market with
cutting-edge solutions to isolate network problems and fix them faster than
ever before," said Alex Neihaus, Vice President of Marketing at Ipswitch.
"As networks grow and become more complex, the administrator's ability to
identify and address issues becomes even more important. Our partnership with
Fluke Networks allows us to combine our strengths with theirs to deliver a
unique, high-capability network monitoring solution for network
Key Device Watch is available in all versions of NetTool™
Inline Network Tester models and select LinkRunner™ Handheld Network
Connectivity Tester models. It is also available as a stand-alone product.
Key Device Watch provides the critical functions needed to monitor and protect
a small network without complexity or high cost. The software enables users to
map to their networks, monitor critical devices such as email or web sites, and
receive alerts about any problems via email, sound, or visual pop-up, in order
to speed problem resolution. A trend analysis feature, which tracks network
diagnostics with graphical reports and charts, is also available in this
Fluke Networks Portable Network Test Devices
NetTool Inline Network Tester combines cable, network, IP phone and PC
configuration testing into one palm-sized tool that empowers network
administrators to quickly identify and resolve the toughest connectivity
problems. With the NetTool Inline Network Tester, administrators can connect
between two network devices, listen to the traffic between them and quickly see
the three most common connectivity problems: the PC is not properly configured,
a network resource is not available or there is a cable problem.
LinkRunner is a portable network connectivity tester and an essential tool for network
technicians that quickly and accurately verifies connectivity and availability.
As networks run faster and become more complex, infrastructure cabling and
devices must operate to precise levels in a tighter performance window.
LinkRunner assists with this goal by enabling users to quickly identify a
problem and improving troubleshooting and escalation accuracy.
Pricing and Availability
NetTool and LinkRunner with Key Device Watch are easy-to-deploy, cost-effective
tools to measure and understand enterprise-wide application performance from
the end-user's perspective. NetTool is available for immediate delivery in
three different versions. All versions include Key Device Watch Software with
suggested U.S. list price starting at $917.
LinkRunner is also available immediately, with Key Device Watch included,
suggested U.S. list price starting at $545. Key Device Watch software is also
available as a stand-alone product with a suggested U.S. list price of $245.
MULTIMODE FIBER ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE BETTER THAN INDUSTRY STANDARD
Optical Fibre and Cable Company, Ltd. (YOFC), manufacturer and worldwide
supplier of industry leading optical fiber and cable, today announced the
environmental performance of its multimode fiber portfolio is significantly
better that industry standards by more than fifty percent. YOFC’s new
specification is < = 0.10 dB/km for the environmental parameters contained
in the TIA/EIA-492 and IEC 60793-2-10 documents. The typical values are < =
extremely high level of environmental performance of our multimode fiber
portfolio represents our continuing leadership position in optical fiber
coating technology,” observed Raadj Matai, Technical Director of the Fibre
Division at YOFC. “Nearly a decade ago, YOFC introduced DLPC 7, a dual-layer,
UV curable acrylate coating material that exceeded the industry standards at
that time. Our current coating, DLPC 9, introduced in early 2004, again offers
environmental performance that exceeds current industry standards,” he commented
superior environmental performance of YOFC’s multimode fiber in conjunction
with its extremely low attenuation provides network designers and installers a
more robust and reliably performing multimode fiber. In January 2005, YOFC
announced the industry’s lowest attenuation multimode fiber with a maximum
attenuation specification of 62.5 multimode fiber of 2.65 dB/km at 850 nm and
.60 dB/km at 1300 nm and, or 50 micron multimode fiber, a maximum attenuation
specification of 2.25 dB/km at 850 nm and .60 dB/km at 1300 nm.
34th Annual Conference and Exhibition in Kissimmee, Florida
Association for Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education, is
coming to Florida. ACUTA welcomes you to join them in this extraordinary event
and expo. Some of the people we spoke with that plan to attend this conference
are combining vacation time with the event (because they are going to be located
in the heart of the world's greatest entertainment center).
previewed the agenda for this conference and can assure you that there is real
value in the presentations.
be higher education data/telecom professionals from all over the country
attending the ACUTA 34th Annual Conference and Exhibition in Kissimmee, Florida
from July 17-21. You can meet, mingle, and network with current and potential
customers while showcasing your assets in your booth. http://www.acuta.org/ex-spon/kissimmee/prospectus.pdf
Conference * Kissimmee, FL * July 17-21, 2005
Seminars * Denver, CO * October 30-Nov 2, 2005
DISTRIBUTORS ANTICIPATE MODEST GAINS
expectations among electrical distributors show guarded optimism, according to
the National Association of Electrical Distributors’ (NAED) most recent
Quarterly Sales Change Expectation (QSCE) survey results. Of the survey’s 250
respondents, 73.6% expected positive sales for the first quarter (Jan. to
March) 2005. The outlook for the second quarter (April to June) is more
positive, with 84.8% anticipating positive sales change.
in First Quarter
First quarter reports reflected expectations of the last QSCE survey, with 76.3%
forecasting increased sales. More than a third of respondents (36.0%) expect
increases of 10% or more for Q1. Other categories with the highest response
were sales growth by 5 to 5.9% (8.0%) and 8 to 9.9% (7.2%).
were reported by 5.6% of respondents for the upcoming quarter. Slightly less than
twenty percent (19.6%) reported negative sales, with 6.0% stating losses of
-10% or more.
In the second quarter of 2005, distributors are anticipating a boost in sales with
nearly 85% (84.8%) expecting positive sales. A quarter of those responding
(24.8%) predict gains of 10% or more. Other top categories were 5 to 5.9%
(16.0%) and 6 to 7.9% (11.6%). Flat sales are expected by 7.6% of respondents
and only 4.4% are preparing for sales decreases.
was distributed in early April via fax and email to approximately 3,800
distributor locations. The questionnaire focused on sales expectations for the
previous and upcoming quarter and the report features statistical breakouts by
geographic region and number of employees.
QUARTERLY SALES CHANGE RESULTS Q1-Q2
Conservative in Estimates
All four geographic regions expressed similar sales results for the first quarter of
2005. The West was slightly more optimistic (76.2%), followed by the Midwest
(74.7%), South (71.8%) and Northeast (69.7%). For the upcoming quarter (April
to June), the Midwest (91.6%) and West (90.5%) have the most positive outlook
followed by the South (76.1%) and Northeast (75.8%).
Companies Most Optimistic
Larger companies, those with 50 or more employees, have the brightest outlook for the
first quarter of 2005, with 83.3% reporting positive sales expectations.
However, smaller companies are expecting increases as well, with 77.2% of
respondents from companies with 5 to 9 employees anticipating positive sales
change. Similar expectations were reported by companies with 30 to 49 employees
(76.7%) and 20 to 29 employees (73.7%) as well as companies with 10 to 19
employees (65.2%) and 1 to 4 employees (64.7%).
mid-size companies are most confident about the second quarter of 2005.
Businesses with 50 or more employees have the highest expectations of positive
sales increases (92.9%), followed by businesses with 20 to 29 employees
(89.5%), 10 to 19 employees (86.4%), and 30 to 49 employees (83.3%). Smaller
companies are slightly more conservative in their expectations, with 78.9% of
businesses with 5 to 9 employees expecting positive sales and 70.6% of
businesses with 1 to 4 employees expecting increases.
QSCE is a management tool provided by NAED to its members and affiliates at no additional
cost. It supplies detailed information to help NAED members run their
businesses more effectively. www.naed.org
Duct Capacity and Simplifying Installation
Systems Protection Group, maker of BentleyHarris® brand protection products, is
the world's largest supplier and manufacturer of protective sleeving.
Headquartered in Exton, Pennsylvania, the company has three manufacturing
plants in the United States; facilities in seven foreign countries; and an
extensive research, development and testing facility.
The company remains focused on innovation and has dedicated over 15% of its
workforce to product engineering, research and development. So when the
telecommunications market needed an alternative to traditional innerduct,
Federal-Mogul Systems Protection Group was ready to respond by introducing
CableGuide®'a8 SC, a textile-based innerduct solution. CableGuide SC was
launched with complete product and customer support from training, to
installation instructions and specialty tools, and even on-site assistance.
From that point forward, an alternative to traditional innerduct became a
new option in the telecom industry.
Traditional installation methods involve the use of high-density polyethylene
(HDPE) or polyvinylchloride (PVC) innerduct to separate individual or groups of
cables. Because the innerduct is rigid and has a fixed diameter, there are
limitations to the size and amount of rigid innerduct that can be used within
conduit. That then limits the amount of cable that can be installed.
A different approach to maximizing space utilization is to replace or
supplement the existing HDPE or PVC innerduct system with CableGuide.
This type of system has the ability to conform to the inside of the
conduit yet still keeps multiple cables segregated.
CableGuide SC, a highly flexible, textile-based innerduct makes it easy to
maximize duct capacity and has improved utilization of space up to 85%.
Key features of the product include:
tested single cell product.
polyester as individual cells.
cell sizes can be engineered to accommodate a variety of cable sizes and types.
cell is permanently color coded for identification.
pull tape printed with sequential footage markers.
The choice of polyester as a base material insures that the product will not be
adversely affected by moisture absorption. It also translates to exceptional
chemical and ultraviolet (UV) resistance. Polyester material is
lightweight, which contributes to the fact that CableGuide SC is only a
fraction of the weight of standard HDPE or PVC innerduct.
CableGuide SC is easily installed into unoccupied duct. The fact that it can be
installed as individual cells or multiple cells is also important when working
with occupied conduit systems. The cell’s design enables it to be pulled in
alongside existing innerduct and cables and its inherent flexibility enables
CableGuide SC to conform into the remaining available space.
The most common installation technique for innerduct of any kind is to pull it
into the conduit. CableGuide SC can easily be installed by this method
but also offers the additional capability of being air blown. The use of
the air blown method to reduce installation time and labor is a growing trend.
CableGuide SC was designed with this technique in mind.
To further assist with the installation of CableGuide SC, Federal-Mogul Systems
Protection Group created three unique alignment tools to ease the process of
working with a flexible innerduct. These tools can accommodate
installation of up to nine cells, in tight areas, and in areas accessible
Another need that was accounted for during the CableGuide SC design was the
ability to quickly and easily splice the material in the field. Splice
kits have been developed that allow CableGuide SC to be safely and securely
spliced if required during installation.
CableGuide SC is available in a detectable version containing a 24 gauge, 19
strand coated tin/copper wire woven into the body of each cell to increase
durability and allow for positive location detection from above ground.
The wire also allows detection of pre-existing non-conductive cable or
dielectric fiber optic cables. Installers can find the cable to make
repairs and other utility workers can locate the cable so that they can avoid
it if they are disturbing the ground in the immediate area.
• Increases Conduit Space Utilization
• Simplifies Installation Process – place several
cables at once or add them one at a time
• Can be used for new installation or existing network
• Install in preoccupied duct with existing cables or
• Easy to handle, ship, store and dispose
• Easily identify cells and decrease location time
• Optional detection features allow cable installers to
make repairs and utility workers to avoid disturbing ground in the immediate
• Utilizes warehouse space efficiently
Solutions for Electrical Applications
A full range of Bentley-Harris products, manufactured by Federal-Mogul Systems
Protection Group, are also available for applications including products:
• Designed to protect wiring, hoses,
cabling and mechanical assemblies against abrasion, dirt, cut-through and
• Featuring a broad ranging of coatings and
treatments to protect against temperature extremes, breakdown strength, weight
Additional sleeving products such as Expando® and ROUNDIT® can assist in
electrical and electronic applications depending upon the need for thermal
stability, bundling and abrasion resistance. www.federal-mogul.com/spg
As seen in Cabling
Business Magazine – May 2005 Manufacturer’s Corner
Sign up for a FREE subscription at www.cablingbusiness.com !
GE CONSUMER & INDUSTRIAL PLEDGES $500,000 TO NAED
EDUCATION & RESEARCH FOUNDATION
National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED) announces a $500,000
commitment by GE Consumer & Industrial to the NAED Education & Research
NAED Education & Research Foundation is committed to helping the electrical
distribution industry move forward, and GE Consumer & Industrial is pleased
to be able to support their efforts and further demonstrate our commitment to
education and learning. NAED's research and education initiatives are critical
in keeping our industry successful with new technology and ideas,” said Michael
Petras, vice president, commercial & industrial, GE Consumer &
Consumer & Industrial, a $13 billion business unit of General Electric,
spans the globe as an industry leader in lighting products, major appliances
and integrated industrial equipment systems and services for multiple
markets—residential, commercial, industrial and institutional/utility. The
business, headquartered in Louisville, Ky., employs approximately 64,000 people
at 135 locations globally.
“For the past 30 years, GE has been
one of the industry’s top supporters of education and training. This
contribution is deeply appreciated, as it is further evidence of GE’s
commitment to the growth and future of the electrical distribution channel,” said Bill Elliott, chairman of the Channel
Advantage Partnership Council and president of Elliott Electric Supply in
company’s donation will become part of an endowment fund for the NAED Education
& Research Foundation. The principal amount of the endowment will remain
untouched, while the interest will be used to commission future projects and
studies. As a $500,000 donor, GE Consumer & Industrial will be recognized
at the regent level and have a permanent position on the Channel Advantage
Partnership Council, which will help select future educational programs and
DuPont announced DuPont™ Abandoned Cable Services, a suite of services designed
to drive compliance with building codes on cabling.
the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA),
approximately 60 billion feet of communications cabling has been installed in
the United States. DuPont believes a significant percentage of that cabling has
been abandoned in buildings and represents a large potential hazard. http://www.nfpa.org/
BILLION FEET of abandoned cable in the US workplace to be removed, the cost
will be staggering. Who will pay for this awesome cleanup and who is qualified
to do the job? Most of the abandoned communications cable contains heavy metals
like LEAD, as well as materials that may create deadly toxic gasses under heat
decomposition. Some of these cables may be classified as HAZMAT and may require
special (and expensive) handling in the waste stream. Building owners are
preparing to deal with the potential liabilities and health risks associated
with this issue.
In a press
release DuPont stated, "DuPont™ Abandoned Cable Services will provide
assessment services for identification and reporting of abandoned cable hazards
in office buildings; planning for infrastructure improvement and management;
connections with local labor; and removal and recycling logistics. This
packaged offering is available to building owners, property managers, tenants,
and corporate network engineers responsible for ensuring that their facilities
meet the National Fire Protection Association's (NFPA) National Electric Code
(NEC) requirement to remove abandoned cabling from buildings.
NEC requirement clearly recognizes that generations of abandoned wires and
cables needlessly increase the fire fuel load on commercial buildings,"
said Pat Lindner, global business manager of DuPont Communications Cabling
Solutions. "DuPont is committed to providing our customers with the best
products and services to protect people and buildings from the damaging effects
Abandoned Cable Services are delivered through professional auditors, local
DuPont preferred network contractors and exclusive recycling technology. The
DuPont preferred contractor network, comprised of referrals to experienced
contractors trained on responsible removal practices and efficient 'removal for
recycling' techniques, is available in all North American major metropolitan
areas, including the Washington DC/Baltimore area, New York City, Philadelphia
and Chicago. End-of-life and abandoned cables are recycled from the client's
site into reusable streams of copper and separated plastics.
In the press
release for this new area of service offering, DuPont did not provide the
criteria for selecting their "preferred network contractors" nor was there
any detailed information on the "exclusive recycling technology".www.dupont.com
NAED RELEASES FINDINGS OF OPERATIONAL MODEL STUDY
to a recent study commissioned by the NAED Education & Research Foundation,
“Operational Model for Increasing Distributor Profitability,” electrical
distributors are under pressure from their customers to provide more for
less—lower prices and higher levels of service. With profit margins declining,
the study suggests it may be necessary to implement an entirely new business
model based on a more precise analysis of customer needs.
study was researched by Dr. Perry Daneshgari, an adjunct professor of management
and engineering at the University of Michigan and president of MCA, and edited
by Dr. Al Bates, president of Profit Planning Group.
examined a new operational model for electrical distributors that incorporates
the elements of “lean production.” As applied to distribution, a
lean-production model involves five key elements: system design, process
models, information flows, organizational learning and differential technology.
All of these elements revolve around the need to respond to the ongoing demand
for change by customers. This overcomes limitations by providing continuous
needs assessment, time flow/error management and facilitated communication.
compiled electrical distributor case studies, the study indicated that a number
of distributors were able to successfully adapt “lean production” concepts in
the areas of customer satisfaction, reducing customer procurement costs and
extending service. The researchers concluded that distributors need to
transition from the historical competency of sales-based service; service-based
sales will be the future of the industry. Service-based sales can increase both
the productivity of customers and the profitability of distributors.
to researchers, the challenge for electrical distributors is to determine how
these concepts can best be integrated into existing businesses. Electrical
distributors must combine market conditions and customer needs to produce their
own industry-specific operational model.
research study was selected, funded and monitored by the Foundation’s Channel
Advantage Partnership (CAP). Together with the Foundation’s Board of Directors,
the CAP Council is working to provide NAED members with tangible, useable
information, as well as strategies and tools to operate stronger and smarter.
of the study and an accompanying CD were mailed to the main contacts of all
NAED members and affiliates. For more information, visit the NAED Web site at www.naed.org. An educational course will be developed
based on the data contained in the research study later this year.
Operational Model for
Increasing Distributor Profitability
in distribution has found that customers have two fundamental and highly
conflicting needs from their distributors. They desire lower prices, yet they
also have a strong need for a greater array of services. While customers may
not perceive the inconsistency of lower price and higher service, they are
relentless in their demand for change.
study suggests a new operational model for distributors that is based on “lean
production.” As applied to distribution, a lean-production operational model
involves five key elements, all of which revolve around the need to respond to
the ongoing demand for change by customers. There is no need to change for the
sake of change. Instead, there is always the need to meet customer needs.
Five Key Elements
System Design - The systematic measurement of customer needs
and a commitment to meeting those needs. The goal of system design is to
provide the maximum level of value added to the customer at the lowest level of
cost to the distributor.
Process Models - Structuring the firm's activities in a way
that focuses strategically on key customer needs. A process model, such as the
Kano Model, helps indicate the direction the firm should take in modifying its
Information Flows - Rethinking information processes in the firm
to provide more rapid responses to changing market conditions. The key to
proper information flows is bandwidth. In most distribution organizations,
horizontal bandwidth (such as manager to manager) is extremely broad while
vertical bandwidth (such as delivery personnel to management) is unnecessarily narrow.
Managers can force vertical bandwidth through formal meetings and job
Organizational Learning - Creating an environment in which the firm can
quickly and aggressively react to changes in customer needs. In most
organizations, systemic learning takes place through a project audit, which
should be held periodically on a company-wide basis.
Differential Technology - The utilization of advanced technology
to maximize the firm's ability to meet customer needs at reduced expense
levels. The key is applying technology in a way that competitors do not, such
as expanded usage of online ordering.
a traditional operational model, employees often perform their jobs flawlessly,
but without regard for the effects on other areas of the business. The lean-production
model overcomes this and other limitations by providing continuous needs
assessment, time flow/error management and facilitated communication.
increase profitability, electrical distributors must respond to the changing
needs of customers by implementing a new operational model. Otherwise,
customers will turn to other options, such as DIY organizations or by
purchasing directly from manufacturers. Service-based sales can increase both
the productivity of customers and the profitability of distributors. www.naed.org
Belden Profits Rise
CDT, formed by the merger last year of Belden and Cable Design Technologies, on
Thursday reported higher quarterly net profit as revenue rose.
Louis-based company posted first-quarter net profit of $13.0 million, or 26
cents per share, compared with $2.3 million, or 9 cents per share, in the
year-ago quarter. www.beldencdt.com
Networks Teams With Computer Associates
Networks today announced it has joined forces with Computer Associates
International, Inc. (NYSE: CA) to optimize the availability of the Interop
Event Network (eNet) at the Interop conference in Las Vegas.
Unicenter Network and Systems Management (Unicenter NSM) and Unicenter
ServicePlus Service Desk have been selected to manage and monitor the eNet for
the seventh consecutive year at the Interop conference. Fluke Networks, which
has been an official eNet sponsor for 11 years, is now the Distributed Analysis
and Troubleshooting Sponsor for eNet. Combining Computer Associates' and Fluke
Networks' solutions help ensure the availability and performance of critical
services for the eNet, one of the world's largest and most sophisticated
short-term networks. eNet supports the Interop conference, which runs through
May 6, 2005 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas.
Networks and CA have teamed up to provide a broader and deeper enterprise
systems management approach for our mutual customers," said Lisa Schwartz,
Solution Marketing and Alliance Manager, Fluke Networks. "The combination
of our solutions enables network professionals to work from a single user
interface to access features such as remote data collection, detailed reports
and remote user interfaces for troubleshooting. This strategic combination
significantly extends Fluke Networks' leadership in the enterprise test,
monitoring and analysis markets."
combination of the companies' network management and distributed analysis
capabilities can be seen at eNet's Network Operating Center (NOC). CA's
Unicenter NSM monitors the health and availability of the eNet. The first
indications of anomalies are analyzed by Fluke Networks' OptiView Console,
OptiView Integrated Network Analyzer and/or EtherScope Network Assistant, all
of which can be remotely accessed and controlled directly from Unicenter NSM.
This seamless integration between Unicenter NSM and Fluke Networks' devices
allows better visibility into network status and faster resolution of problems.
Networks' EtherScope Network Assistant communicates directly with CA's Unicenter
ServicePlus Service Desk via a web interface to send trouble tickets and to
dispatch technicians. Anomalies can be tested, diagnosed and resolved with the
EtherScope, and the trouble ticket can be opened, modified and closed remotely,
reducing paper-based processes and enabling the technician to more efficiently
act upon trouble tickets and move to their next task. With distributed
analysis, centralized analysis and remote troubleshooting, Interop's eNet
benefits from a management system that minimizes problems and maximizes the
integration of Fluke Networks' monitoring technologies with CA's Unicenter
enterprise and service management solutions enables customers to incorporate
granular network insight into a coherent, efficient overall strategy for
optimizing service levels and reducing the cost of infrastructure
ownership," said Melvin Estrada, Business and Product Manager for
Unicenter Network Management solutions at CA. "The fact that we are
collaborating to support Interop's eNet is indicative of how well our products
are integrated and how effectively they manage even the most sophisticated
Associates International, Inc. (NYSE:CA), one of the world's largest management
software companies, delivers software and services across operations, security,
storage, life cycle and service management to optimize the performance,
reliability and efficiency of enterprise IT environments. Founded in 1976, CA
is headquartered in Islandia N.Y., and serves customers in more than 140
countries. http://ca.com .
Networks provides innovative solutions for the testing, monitoring and analysis
of enterprise and telecommunications networks and the installation and
certification of the fiber and copper forming the foundation for those
networks. The company's comprehensive line of Network SuperVision Solutionstm
provide network installers, owners, and maintainers with superior vision,
combining speed, accuracy and ease of use to optimize network performance.
Headquartered in Everett, Washington, the company distributes its products in
more than 50 countries. www.flukenetworks.com
Three Tiny Treasures - Performed Line
Other newsletters adopt a
"pick 'em and forget 'em" approach to stock recommendations. But
that's not how we do things at Hidden Gems. We take our obligations to our
subscribers seriously and strive to continuously monitor our companies and
update our members on their progress. In that spirit, today Rich Smith examines
the earnings reports that three of our Tiny Gems have just released.
By Rich Smith
In recent weeks, stock market
investors have been living la vida volatile. The S&P 500 index plunged from
a high of 1,225 to as low as 1,146 (a 6.5% decline) before staggering back up
to close recently at just over 1,160 -- still a 5% loss. At Motley Fool Hidden Gems, our flagship
publication for small-cap investors, we've felt the pain as well. Our
portfolio, which in its inaugural year regularly posted gains in the range of
40% and more, has been hit hard. In fact, as of this writing, we're up
But we're still beating the
S&P 500 by a 5-1 margin. And those are just the results for our official
recommendations. Our Watch List stocks -- the runners-up in our monthly
stock-culling exercise -- are doing nearly as well. And our Tiny Gems --
high-quality companies in micro-cap packaging -- are beating the market by a 12-1
margin. (And, yeah, Tiny Gems' performance is more fluke than skill,
but you know we're still grinning ear to ear reciting it.)
More than picks and statistics
(enunciate it really well, and it rhymes)
What's more, we don't emulate the "pick 'em and forget
'em" approach of other investing newsletters. On the contrary, we've
invested a lot of time and effort in finding these companies -- official
recommendations, Watch List stocks and Tiny Gems all. And now that we've found
them, we're not letting them out of our sight. Our team of Hidden Gems
analysts continuously monitors these companies for news that our readers need
to know and periodically updates them on developments in our companies, both on
our Hidden Gems discussion boards, in monthly updates of the most
interesting news, and in detailed semiannual reviews. And, of course, right
here on www.Fool.com .
In today's news
Speaking of which, the past couple of weeks have been busy ones
for our Gems. Earnings season is in full swing, and the business press is
chock-full of profits news on our companies. Rest assured that we'll be
covering the majority of the really interesting earnings announcements among
the Gems and Watch List stocks either in separate articles or in expert-led
discussions on our boards. Today, I want to update members on the latest news
out of three of Hidden Gems' JV league: our Tiny Gems.
Image Sensing Systems (Nasdaq:
Like your car? Hate your commute? Then give a big
"howdy" to Image Sensing Systems, because this traffic-camera
designer aims to make traffic congestion a thing of the past. It's not a
high-profile task. In fact, you've probably never heard of most companies
working in this space, as they range from the small (Quixote (Nasdaq:
QUIX)) to the very small (Optelecom (Nasdaq:
OPTC)) to the very, very small (Image Sensing). But high-profile or
not, Image Sensing is proving that by making traffic flow better, it can
generate some cash flow as well.
On Thursday, this tiny company
(and I mean tiny, with a staff of fewer than three dozen employees)
reported $0.10 in earnings per diluted share,
a 24% rise increase over Q1 2004. This despite a top-line increase of less than
3%. The reason for the huge jump in profits relative to revenues was that Image
Sensing's lower-margin product sales declined by half year-on-year, while
high-margin royalty revenue skyrocketed 39%. When most of your growth comes
from sales that drop almost directly to the bottom line, as royalty revenues
do, you can really supercharge your returns.
On the downside, it would be a
mistake to assume that profits will continue to outperform revenue growth in
future quarters. The company made a point of emphasizing both its backlog of
equipment sales expected to take place in Europe and the fact that a new
product is ready to begin selling in Asia. Both of those developments should
lead to stronger revenue performance going forward, but with a consequent
return of net margins to a more normalized level.
Lakeland Industries (Nasdaq:
It's a good thing Lakeland's specialty is manufacturing protective
clothing. This sub-$100 million micro cap needs all the protection it can get
as it does battle for market share every day against giants hundreds of times
its size. Household names such as DuPont (NYSE:
DD) and Kimberly-Clark (NYSE:
KMB) compete against Lakeland. Worse, Lakeland also has to buy some
of its raw materials from major competitor Dupont. As
hazardous-to-your-business-health environments go, it doesn't get much tougher
Lakeland operates on
a somewhat different fiscal timeline from most other companies. So when it
reported earnings on April 15, it was actually reporting for all of
"fiscal 2005" just ended, rather than for a single quarter. For the
year, Lakeland experienced a 38% rise in net profits on a 6% increase in
revenue compared with fiscal 2004. Per-share profits didn't do so well,
however. The company issued 1.3 million new shares back in July 2004, diluting
the extra net profits by 40% and reining in per-share profits growth to just
Worse, from Wall Street's
perspective, the company isn't expecting to see per-share earnings rise at all
in fiscal 2006, because of a combination of increased costs for
Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, rising raw material costs, and additional stock
dilution from a planned stock dividend that will be declared at the end of this
One final issue to keep an eye
on with this company is the rate of inventory growth vs. sales growth. Despite
revenues rising just 6% last year, inventories grew nearly 18% -- three times
as fast. As is often the case with companies where inventory growth outpaces
sales growth, the buildup in inventories also took a toll on the company's cash
flows. After generating positive cash flow for two years running, Lakeland
turned free cash flow negative in fiscal 2005 for the first time since 2002.
Preformed Line Products (Nasdaq:
Batting cleanup for this line of happy-news bearers comes wire and cable
encloser Preformed Line Products. And this slugger packs a wallop, as demonstrated by its
first-quarter 2005 results released Monday. Compared with the year-ago
quarter, Preformed Line ramped its sales up 28% and extracted from those
results a 143% increase in per-share diluted profits.
That's outstanding. And
what's more, the company's accounts receivable increased just 7% against the
28% sales increase, and inventories actually declined year-on-year. The way I
read that, we're looking at a company with real sales here (channel stuffers
need not apply) -- a company whose products are in such demand that it's
able to require prompt payment from customers, while selling off goods almost
as fast as it can manufacture them.
Combine strong profits with a
strong business, and then throw in shareholder-friendly management that doesn't
dilute outside shareholders but rather pays them an above-market-average 2.4%
dividend. Small size or not, this one could be a true gem of an investment.
www.smpdata.com - www.preformed.com
The first team
That's all the news on these JV Gem candidates for this week.
Covering all three in a single column, I've necessarily abbreviated each
write-up to fit the space allowed. But if you find yourself intrigued and
wanting to learn more about these three Tiny Gems, you're welcome to peruse the
Hidden Gems site free of charge for a month by clicking here.
Essex Inc. Announces Filing of Universal Shelf Registration Statement
Superior Essex Inc., a wire
and cable company in North America, announced that it has filed a universal
shelf registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission. When
declared effective by the Securities Exchange Commission, the registration
statement will permit Superior Essex to issue, from time to time, up to an
aggregate of $175,000,000 of Superior Essex common stock, preferred stock, debt
securities and warrants.
"Having a shelf
registration in place gives us flexibility to opportunistically access capital
markets," said Stephen Carter, Chief Executive Officer of Superior Essex.
The company would plan to use net proceeds from any sale of its securities to
provide working capital for general corporate purposes. www.superioressex.com.
Introduces New Mighty Mo 6 Seismic Cable Management Rack
Ortronics/Legrand is pleased to announce the introduction of
the Mighty Mo 6 Seismic Cable Management Rack. The patent pending Mighty Mo 6
seismic rack combines the advanced features of the Mighty Mo 6 cable management
system with the added strength and protection of a Zone 4 seismic rating.
Ortronics Mighty Mo 6 seismic rack is compliant to Telcordia
GR-63-CORE Zone 4 standards, with a load rating of 510 lbs, and is the first
seismic rack with a "knock-down" design that can be assembled onsite.
This patent pending steel frame design allows for much greater ease and
flexibility in shipping, handling and installation, while still providing
maximum strength and rigidity.
The Mighty Mo 6 seismic rack is 7 ft. high and available
with either a 10.5" or 16.25" channel depth. A full 45 rack units of
mounting space is available, with #12-24 mounting holes on the front and rear
of the rack. The seismic rack accepts all Mighty Mo 6 vertical and horizontal
cable managers and is fully compatible with all Mighty Mo 6 system components.
The Mighty Mo 6 advanced cable management system is
specifically designed for higher density cabling system applications, such as
premise networks, data centers and SANs. It features an innovative vertical
management "cage" with individual 1-rack unit fingers and a
double-hinged door that can open to either the left or right. Mighty Mo 6 also
offers rack unit markings, built-in strain relief, bend radius control, and
cable routing with floor and ceiling cable access to distribution cables. It
features patented channel construction, and includes a top trough with built-in
waterfall to provide bend radius control and efficient patch cable routing. Its
durable black powder coat finish minimizes fingerprints and resists
iTRACS® Releases New IT Infrastructure
Simplified management tools provide ease of use without
the leader in intelligent network infrastructure management solutions has
released a new suite of easy to use software for IT change management and
network infrastructure tracking.
Infrastructure Manager software has been specifically designed to function in
partnership with iTRACS-Enabled™ hardware - manufactured by industry
leaders like AMP NETCONNECT. The software is designed to explore and discover
and map the connectivity of the customer network. It is further designed to
simplify the process of all future moves, adds and changes (MACs) of end-users.
It also intelligently suggests the best connectivity routes, a feature called
auto-routing. The software allows simultaneous access by a spectrum of
department representatives; these include help desk, planning, network
administration, supervision and technicians.
Problems of Complex Networks - Solved
single-site software is ideally suited to customers with complex data/telecom
networks and critical applications. Examples include financial institutions,
insurance providers, data centers, high security government facilities,
military defense facilities, airports, medical centers, universities and
customers and clients share the difficult management of complicated networks,
requiring accurate record-keeping, high security, and frequent MACs. The
simplification of the work order process also provides valuable benefits to
client networks of any size, and can be upgraded for Enterprise networks that
require custom program development.
one of the earliest developers of Cable Management Software (CMS), has
maintained an international leadership position in CMS design for more than 15
years. iTRACS IM has been specifically designed to automate the MAC record
maintenance process, to simplify the user interface and to share access across
departments. No competitive CMS software package offers even a fraction of the
strength and flexibility of the iTRACS IM product.
“We listened to our
customers and we are delighted to release iTRACS IM. It includes some new,
highly desirable features such as automatic routing and service provisioning.
iTRACS IM will be known for simplicity and ease of use, while remaining
compatible with our mainstream products,” said Tom Reedy, President and
CEO of iTRACS. “We’ve added more highly skilled and experienced people in
anticipation of iTRACS IM’s success, and we look forward to continued sales
growth and improved customer service through the efforts of our strong channel
partners, quality sales professionals, and dedicated development team.” www.itracs.com .
President / CEO Announces Retirement
CDT Inc. said C. Baker Cunningham, its president and chief executive officer,
has decided to accelerate his plan to retire in 2006 at the age of 65.
said at the company's annual meeting today that no formal retirement date has
been set, and he will remain in his current position with Belden CDT during the
transition to its new CEO.
C. Cressey is chairman of Belden CDT's board of directors and will remain in
that role. Belden CDT Inc. was formed in July 2004 through the merger of Belden
Inc. and Cable Design Technologies Corporation.
company is performing well and has the strength and financial flexibility to
make measured long-term choices about its future," Cunningham said.
"The integration of Belden and Cable Design Technologies is in the hands
of our capable management and significantly ahead of schedule, and the
opportunities for the combined company are outstanding. Starting the CEO
transition now enables the person who will lead Belden CDT in its next stage of
development to be part of our long-term strategic planning process as we focus
on the future of our company."
added, "It has been my intention to retire at age 65, and the company's
solid performance, success with the integration process and strong outlook make
it possible for me to retire sooner than I had planned."
board's succession planning committee has engaged Crist Associates, an
executive search firm based in Chicago, to identify CEO candidates.
served as Belden's chairman, president and chief executive officer from its
initial public offering in 1993 and as president and chief executive officer of
Belden CDT since the merger. Previously he was executive vice president and a
23-year veteran of Cooper Industries, Inc., which also was Belden's parent
the annual meeting shareholders re-elected the 10 members of its board and
approved the addition of 2.5 million shares to the company's long-term
performance incentive plan.
addition, the board of directors of Belden CDT Inc. today declared a regular
quarterly dividend of five cents per share payable on July 6, 2005 to all
shareholders of record as of June 3, 2005. www.belden.com
Spring 2005 Data Center World Conference
17th to the 21st, 2005, AFCOM held its Data Center World conference at the Rio
in Las Vegas and concurrently celebrated its twenty-five year anniversary. The
conference kicked off with a keynote address by Brian Koma, president of
Stratagem Marketing, Inc.: “Back to the Future in the Data Center,” a look at
the past twenty-five years in data center technology. At this presentation,
AFCOM and Network World presented three New Data Center Awards for the most
secure data center, the data center manager of the year and the data center of
the year. Recipients included James Callahan, directory, data center security,
MCI Smart Center, Beltsville, MD; Raymond Detheridge, data center facilities
manager, MCI, Elmsford, NY; and the data center of the year went to Oracle’s
Austin Data Center: Mitchell McGovern, vice president of Oracle Global Data
Center Operations and David Thompson, senior vice president, chief information
World’s attendance more than doubled from spring 2004, topping 900, and vendor
participation in the expo hall increased by 37%. Highlights of the event
included virtual data tours; full-day tutorials on power and cooling, budget
validation, and data center standardization; and many educational sessions on
topics including data center security, best data center practices, using
metrics to drive computer operations efficiency, and mission-critical
operations—to name a few.
raved about the Data Center World trade show that included industry leaders
such as IBM, Connectivity Technologies, The Bick Group, AFCO Systems,
Cybermation, Emerson Network Power/Liebert, Imation, and many more. “I felt the
exhibit hall was outstanding,” shared Timothy Mills, operations manager,
Cardinal Health. “I was there until pretty much the end. I met with a vendor
who had new liquid for fire suppression, and I met with a guy from
Help/Systems…about the direction of our organization,” he added.
One of the
aspects that is most appreciated by attendees—and is expanded at each new
conference—is AFCOM’s Vision2Vision program, which includes a networking
luncheon, open forum sessions, and after-hours gatherings to promote end-user
communications among their peers. Brad Lauderman, manager operations services,
Armstrong World Industries, remarked, “A lot of us had very similar issues; one
person in particular really matched my situation with change management, SAP
and job scheduling; when I talked to him, it was nice to know where he is
“The conference as a whole is definitely “value add,” and I definitely think
it was worth my time; it definitely exceeded my expectations going into my
first conference. I’ll be back next year,” Michael Miller, data center manager,
ABN AMRO Bank concluded.
Data Center World conference will be held at the Hilton Chicago from October 9th
through the 12th, 2005. And next spring, Data Center World will be
in New Orleans, March 26th through the 30th, 2006. www.afcom.com
Announces the Opening of a Broadband Cable Manufacturing Plant in China
Inc. a cable and connectivity network solutions purveyor announced the opening
of a broadband cable manufacturing facility in the Peoples Republic of China.
The plant, operating under the name of CommScope Asia (Suzhou) Technologies
Co., Ltd., is located outside of Suzhou, China, a city of over one million
people northwest of Shanghai. It has approximately 120,000 sq. ft. (11,000 m2)
and will house manufacturing of broadband coaxial cable primarily for the
Asia/Pacific (APAC) region.
are excited to have in-region manufacturing capability for the growing Asian
market," said CommScope President and Chief Operating Officer Brian
Garrett at today's ribbon-cutting ceremony. "We believe this facility will
enhance our market presence by improving our customer service while providing
our customers with cable that is made to CommScope's exacting standards."
plant, which is projected to employ more than 200 employees after it ramps up
to full production, is expected to begin shipping product to customers by
mid-year 2005. http://www.commscope.com
of chemicals and cabling are married at the hip. What affects one also affects the
invest $600 million in China by 2010
Cable Corporation Reports First Quarter Results and Declares Dividend on
Cable Corporation reported net income after preferred stock dividends for the
first quarter ended April 1, 2005 of $7.5 million, which was $0.18 on a diluted
per share basis. These results were up from a net loss of $(3.4) million in the
first quarter of 2004.
- Net sales of $554.2 million were up 7% versus
metal-adjusted sales in the first quarter of 2004. All three reporting
segments reported positive sales growth versus prior year.
- Gross margin increased by 290 basis points in the first
quarter of 2005 versus the metal-adjusted gross margin, excluding
rationalization charges, in the first quarter of 2004.
- Completed the acquisition of certain assets of Draka
Comteq's business in North America.
- Earnings per share forecast for the second quarter of
2005 is between $0.20 and $0.25 per share on approximately $580 to $600
million in revenues.
accordance with the terms of the Company's 5.75% Series A Convertible
Redeemable Preferred Stock, the Board of Directors has declared a preferred stock
dividend of approximately $0.72 per share for the three-month period ending May
24, 2005. The dividend is payable on May 24, 2005 to preferred stockholders of
record as of April 29, 2005.
pricing actions we implemented in the second half of 2004 have been effective,
allowing us to make significant progress towards recovering the inflation in
our raw materials and increasing our operating margin on metal-adjusted sales
by about 260 basis points versus the operating margin, excluding rationalization
charges, in the first quarter of 2004," commented Gregory B. Kenny,
President and Chief Executive Officer of General Cable. "Additionally,
this is the eighth consecutive quarter in which we have reported positive
year-over-year metal-adjusted revenue growth, indicating the recovery which
began in 2003 in the wire and cable industry is continuing into 2005. We do,
however, continue to cautiously monitor the underlying demand from our
traditional RBOC telecom cable customers and the rate of incursion of fiber
into the telecom network."
sales for the first quarter of 2005 were $554.2 million, an increase of 7%
versus metal-adjusted net sales in the 2004 first quarter. The average price
per pound of copper and aluminum increased $0.23 and $0.14, respectively, from
the first quarter of 2004 to the first quarter of 2005. The 2004 net sales have
been increased in this comparison to put them on a consistent metal-adjusted
basis with 2005 net sales. Overall net sales for the quarter were positively
affected by about 2% as a result of favorable year-over-year changes in foreign
currency exchange rates for the Company's international operations and by
increased pricing across all segments.
to the 7% increase in metal-adjusted net sales was a 10% increase in Energy
cables, where North American sales increased due to strong demand for both
transmission and distribution cables. International sales were also up due to
demand for distribution cables and favorable foreign currency exchange rates.
Industrial & Specialty cables revenue was up 3% due to continuing strong
demand for zero halogen cables in Europe and favorable foreign currency
exchange rates. Revenue for Communications cables increased 12% reflecting
increased sales in all product segments, including telephone exchange cables,
LAN cables, electronics and OEM assemblies.
general and administrative expenses were $43.2 million in the first quarter of
2005, up from $38.7 million in the first quarter of 2004. The increase was in
large measure due to the Company's Sarbanes-Oxley compliance activities and
changes in foreign currency exchange rates. Reported SG&A was 7.8% of net
sales in the first quarter of 2005, up from the 7.5% of metal-adjusted net
sales reported in the first quarter of 2004.
first quarter 2005 operating income of $24.2 million was up from $6.7 million
in the first quarter of 2004. The 2004 results included a $2.7 million charge
related to the rationalization of certain industrial cable manufacturing
facilities. Operating income for the first quarter of 2005 included
approximately $0.8 million of strike related costs and benefited from the price
increases implemented in the second half of 2004 to recover rapidly increasing
raw material costs.
interest expense was $9.9 million for the first quarter of 2005, up from $9.3
million in the same period in 2004 as a result of a higher level of debt. The
Company's debt level has increased over the prior year due to higher working
capital requirements as a result of increased sales volumes and pricing as the
Company passed through significantly higher raw material costs to its
customers. During the first quarter of 2005, the Company accrued approximately
$1.5 million in dividends on its preferred stock.
Quarter 2005 Outlook
the second quarter of 2005, we are estimating that revenue should be in the
$580 to $600 million range, up approximately 5% from metal-adjusted revenues in
the second quarter of 2004," said Kenny. "With the expectation that
copper will average between $1.45 and $1.50 per pound, diluted earnings per
share should be in the $0.20 to $0.25 range." www.generalcable.com.
AQUALERT™ WATER INDICATING LABELS PROVIDE CLEAR EVIDENCE OF WATER DAMAGE
Brady Corporation has introduced its B-354 water indicating
label material, part of a family of products under the Brady Aqualert™ brand.
The labels offer evidence of water intrusion for control of warranty claims,
failure analysis, design assistance, and service and repair troubleshooting.
The labels change permanently from white to bright blue when coming in contact
with water- based solutions. They withstand heat and humidity without a false
Brady B-354 label material is UL969 recognized. Also, based
on results of testing using recognized analytical methods performed by a third
party independent laboratory, B-354 is RoHS compliant to the current TAG MCV
proposal to the EU Commission Directive 2002/95/EU(RoHS) for
cadmium(<100ppm), lead(<1000ppm), hexavalent chromium(<1000ppm),
mercury(<1000ppm), PBB's(<1000ppm), and PBDE's(<1000 ppm).
The labels are available blank or pre-printed from Brady and
can be used with thermal transfer printers using Brady's R6200, R7961 and R4500
series ribbons. Labels are available in an assortment of standard sizes and can
be special ordered in custom indicating colors and designs upon request. They
can also be supplied with an assortment of custom covert and overt security
features for authenticity control. www.bradycorp.com.
Announces Availability of PFOA Emissions Reduction Technologies
Available to Global
Fluoropolymer Industry Royalty-Free
announced that it will provide critical technologies to reduce emissions of
PFOA royalty-free to others in the fluoropolymer industry.
is an essential processing aid used to produce fluoropolymer high- performance
materials. Fluoropolymers are used in architectural fabrics; chemical
processing piping and vessels; automotive fuel systems; telecommunications and
electronic wiring insulation; and computer chip processing equipment and
systems, as well as consumer products such as cookware and apparel. The
aerospace, transportation and electronics industries rely on these products
because of their purity, reliability and durability in critical applications.
in cooperation with The Fluoropolymer Manufacturers Group (FMG), a part of the
Society of the Plastics Industry (SPI), has committed to reduce emissions from
fluoropolymer manufacturing sites worldwide and also will reduce APFO content
in aqueous fluoropolymer dispersions used for coatings applications. The FMG is
made up of the U.S. fluoropolymer producers, including DuPont, Dyneon (3M),
Daikin America, and Asahi Glass Chemicals Americas. This action will reduce the
potential for emissions at processors who use aqueous fluoropolymer dispersions
by more than 90 percent. APFO is the form of PFOA used as a fluoropolymer
is offering our technology as a royalty-free cross license to help ensure the
success of the FMG commitment," said David Boothe of DuPont Fluoropolymer
Solutions. "Since all still need to use APFO to make fluoropolymers, this
program is not designed to replace this essential processing aid. DuPont will
instead add a step to our process that removes nearly all APFO from our aqueous
dispersions to accomplish the goal. We expect to announce availability of these
next-generation aqueous dispersion products soon."
addition to source reduction technology for APFO in dispersion, DuPont also is
offering royalty-free access to its patents and technology for PFOA emissions
abatement, water treatment and recovery for reuse. www.dupont.com www.daikin.cc
and Ortronics Introduce the NetClear GTX UTP Cabling System
Berk-Tek and Ortronics announce the launch of the NetClear
GTX UTP cabling system for support of 10 Gigabit Ethernet, as identified by the
IEEE 802.3an and TIA augmented Category 6 channel requirements.
combines Berk-Tek LANmark-10G UTP cable and Ortronics Clarity10G UTP
connectivity in a system that provides alien near and far end crosstalk
performance to 500 MHz for reliable 10 Gb/s operation. The NetClear GTX system
guarantees 100-meter 10GBASE-T support for standards compliant channel
NetClear GTX is an addition to the NetClear XG LAN family of
solutions designed to support the complex requirements of 10 Gigabit networks
using either copper or fiber optic cabling. The NetClear XG LAN family of
cabling systems from Berk-Tek and Ortronics provides the most comprehensive and
highest performing array of 10 Gigabit solutions in the industry. XG LAN
solutions also include the NetClear GTS Category 6 FTP solution and the
NetClear MM10 multimode fiber cabling system that offers the industry's longest
channel lengths for 10GBASE-SR - 600 meters using economical 850nm optics.
Today Berk-Tek and Ortronics continue to provide their
combined engineering expertise to the IEEE 802.3an and TIA standards committees
to help define the final requirements for 10 Gigabit Ethernet over twisted pair
cable media. The NetClear GTX cabling system will provide guaranteed compliance
to all current and future 10G channel specifications identified by the IEEE and
TIA committees. In short, the NetClear GTX copper cabling system guarantees
authentic 10 Gigabit performance. http://www.netclear-channel.com.
TO LEAD NAED AS CHAIRMAN IN 2006-2007
National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED) has named John Duda, chairman
and CEO of Butler Supply, Inc., in St. Louis, Mo., as the incoming chair-elect
of the NAED Board of Directors.
am very honored to accept the awesome responsibility of serving as NAED
chairman. I believe that a strong, national trade association that is attuned
to the needs and wants of its members is an incredibly valuable resource. I am
committed to serve large and small distributors alike so NAED can help us all
to continuously grow and prosper,” Duda said.
will serve as chair-elect in 2005-2006, preparing to lead the NAED Board of
Directors in 2006-2007. He and his company have played a pivotal role in NAED
for many decades, helping the association develop and adapt to changes. Duda
will be the third chairman from Butler Supply.
his 37 years in electrical distribution, Duda has served the association in
numerous ways. While leading the NAED Education & Research Foundation as
chairman from 2001-2003, he initiated the charge to create an endowment
campaign to ensure the future of the Foundation. He also participated in the
association as the Central Region Vice President, Missouri River Club
President, and as a member of the NAED Board of Directors, Channel Advantage
Partnership Council, Central Regional Council, Finance Committee, Industry
Education Council, Foundation Blue Ribbon Panel and TED Advisory
industry involvement also includes being active with the St. Louis Electrical
Board as president, Affiliated Distributors as Network Chairman, and teaching a
course on “Improving the Bottom Line” for the University of Electrical
Distribution for two years.
is currently led by Peter de Steiger, CEO of Raymond De Steiger, Inc.,
in Sterling Heights, Mich. At NAED’s Annual Meeting on May 14-18, Bill
Elliott, president of Elliott Electric Supply, in Nacogdoches, Texas will
become NAED Chairman of the Board for the 2005-2006 year.
- National Hurricane Preparedness Week
state and local government agencies have united to stress hurricane
preparedness for the upcoming 2005 hurricane season. In an official White House
statement, President Bush urged “all citizens to become aware of the dangers of
hurricanes and tropical storms and to learn how to minimize their destructive
hurricane forecasters are predicting another above-normal hurricane season on
the heels of last year's destructive and historic hurricane season. "NOAA's
prediction for the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season is for 12 to 15 tropical
storms, with seven to nine becoming hurricanes, of which three to five could
become major hurricanes," said retired Navy Vice Adm. Conrad C.
Lautenbacher, Ph.D., undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and
NOAA administrator at a news conference in Bay St. Louis, Miss.
"Forecaster confidence that this will be an active hurricane season is
real estate should be especially concerned. Last year’s hurricane related
damage estimates topped $40 billion. Though buildings cannot always withstand
the destructive forces of a hurricane, proper planning can help mitigate damage
and save lives. Property owners’/managers’ play an active role preparing for
such events. The best course of action is to have a working emergency plan in
place. Once an overall comprehensive plan is in place, it can be modified to
accommodate various scenarios.
As part of
National Hurricane Preparedness Week, BOMA International is offering property
owners and managers the tools needed to prepare for emergency situations. Let
BOMA International show you how to put an emergency preparedness plan into
comprehensive guide shows you every aspect of how to plan for emergency
situations. The book covers emergencies such as fire, flood, power failure,
bomb threat, medical emergencies and crime. It also includes specialized
emergencies such as earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes and elevator failures.
Every aspect of creating and/or updating your emergency/security plan is
discussed. BOMA, 2001. 218 pages.
guidebook gives a step-by-step analysis of everything you need to do to prepare
a comprehensive emergency/disaster plan. Places a special emphasis on
evacuation and recovery. The book offers: detailed evacuation procedures; a
comprehensive overview of terrorism, with special sections focusing on
bioterrorism and cyber terrorism; steps to be taken when preparing for a
natural disaster (including hurricanes); an outline to follow when recovering
from a disaster; and guidelines for communicating with tenants and the media.
BOMA, 2002. 170 pages. www.boma.org
information on National Hurricane Preparedness Week visit:
Modular Products Announces Steven Funderud As Product Manager
Modular Products is pleased to announce the addition of Steven Funderud to the
position of Product Manager. Steven brings to SMP an extensive background in
distribution sales and marketing, as well as previous sales history with SMP
products and services. Steve’s knowledge of product, applications, and ever
changing market factors will be a contributing factor to growth in two of SMP’s
most highly visible product lines.
will be directly responsible for managing the Copper product line, in which
Superior Modular Products holds patents that make the company a major player in
the Premise Cabling Industry. Furthermore, he will also manage a section of the
Residential product line, which includes MSDE and HAX enclosures with
Everette, Director of Marketing for Superior Modular Products states, “Steve
brings a fresh approach to managing the Copper and Residential product lines.
His insight and experience will push our efforts to keep our line of copper
connecting hardware as the backbone of our company while increasing market
awareness and sales of our Residential Enclosure product line. We are glad to
have him back and I think you will see very quickly that he will be quite
valuable in all of our efforts.”
beginning in 1990, Superior Modular Products has prided itself on manufacturing
top-quality products as well as generating innovative solutions for the
Superior Modular Products has focused on manufacturing products that are not
only competitive but consistently surpassing industry standards. The
development side of this dual commitment has yielded a long list of patented
innovations widely used throughout the industry, many of which have become the
basis for what is now standard technology. All of the products they have developed
are consistently recognized for their innovation and reliability by some of the
largest manufacturers in the industry.
Their invention of the low cross-talk, electrical connector system (US Pat.
5,299,956) revolutionized the high-speed connector industry. This system forms
the basis for cross-talk reduction of category 5,
category 5e and category 6 patch panels and is still required in the
emerging categories of high-speed connectors.
SMP's next major engineering breakthrough came with the development of the
impedance matched, reduced cross-talk, electrical connector system. Although
its importance was not fully realized at first, impedance matching is now
recognized as one of the most critical needs in the industry. With the
emergence of Gigabit
Ethernet, issues of return loss and impedance have been propelled to the
forefront of connector design.
Some of their more recent patented innovations include a modular plug design
suitable for category
6 applications, which allows manufacturers to simultaneously increase
yields and lower the costs of category 6 compliant patch cords.
Superior Modular Products closely monitors and supports Standards organizations
and have played a major role in the TIA Committee’s efforts to establish patch
cord test standards and to identify the problems associated with high-frequency
With their history of innovation and reliability, Superior Modular Products is
well positioned to move into the future of this rapidly evolving industry. SMP
stands behind their complete line of high-speed
copper and fiber optic products with the assurance that their two-fold
commitment to quality – superior development and superior products – will
continue to prove them aptly named.
check out www.cablingconnections.com
E-News Letter: Make Your Ultimate Electrical Connection!
Welcome to the Ultimate Electrical Connection, the new
biweekly e-newsletter that will keep you up to date on NECA 2005 New Orleans,
including the NECA Convention and Show, the updated Conference on Integrated
Building Systems and the brand-new Conference on Lighting Education.
Watch this space for the latest in speaker information,
workshop topics and new exhibitors joining the NECA Show. Want to find out what
NECA is cooking up just for you in New Orleans? Check out the Ultimate
Electrical Connection - delivered right to your inbox every two weeks!
Find out more at www.necaconvention.org
Gain an Advantage at the Conference on Lighting Education
Learn how to take advantage of all the lighting industry has
to offer you at the only conference for electrical contractors! The Conference
on Lighting Education is the best source of information for contractors who
want to turn lighting projects into greater profit for their companies.
The conference features an all-star roster of speakers from
the lighting industry, including Mary Beth Gotti, manager of the GE Lighting
Institute; Cheryl English, vice president of Lithonia Lighting/Acuity Brands
and vice chairman of NEMA's Lighting Division; and Mark Lien, manager of
Cooper's Lighting Center, the SOURCE. Lighting product manufacturers will also
offer technical workshops from the NECA Show floor.
Make the most of your specifying power on lighting projects
by learning directly from the industry experts! Make plans to attend the first
Conference on Lighting Education at NECA 2005 New Orleans! See the conference
schedule at www.necaconvention.org/lighting.
Why IBS Education is Important to Your Business
The integration of traditional power systems with building
controls and communication systems is becoming the business core of today's
electrical contractor. Low voltage building communications and control systems
are among the fastest growing and most profitable areas for electrical
contractors. According the 2004 Electrical Contractor Profile compiled by
Electrical Contractor magazine:
· 71.6 percent of electrical contractors are working
in voice, data, video, fiber options and/or premise wiring;
· 65 percent are working in security/life safety;
· 33 percent are involved in residential automation,
security and theater systems; and
· 55 percent are involved in automation/control
systems project in commercial, industrial or institutional project.
Now more than ever, electrical contractors need the
educational opportunities available at the Conference on Integrated Building
Systems. The four-day program and special IBS Pavilion on the NECA Show floor
are geared towards providing electrical contractors with the tools to become
the general contractors, and prepare specialty contractors to become a prime
contractor on the job. Get the details at www.necaconvention.org/ibs/
An Evening with Jo Dee Messina
It may seem that Jo Dee Messina burst onto the country music
scene overnight when she won Best Country Artist at the 1996 Boston Music
Awards. But the truth is Jo Dee Messina has been singing and working hard in
country music ever since her childhood. . In fact, since her debut, Jo Dee
has had eight number one hits, sold more than 5 million albums and has received
critical acclaim for her explosive singing style and electrifying performances.
Her third album, "Burn," sold more than a million copies and earned
her two Grammy nominations. Her latest album "Delicious Surprise,"
was heading to the top of the Country Albums chart even before its official
release this spring.
Jo Dee Messina will bring her special country music style to
NECA 2005 New Orleans Closing Celebration Tuesday evening, Sept. 19, at the New
Orleans Cultural Center Municipal Auditorium. Jo Dee will deliver a selection
of songs that promise to capture her essence - her feistiness, her strength and
her humor - and offer some "delicious surprises" as well. What a
great finale to NECA 2005 New Orleans!
Reach the Customers that Matter the Most!
New Orleans is known for many things - parties on Bourbon
Street, fabulous art galleries, delicious food and music in the air. Don't miss
your chance to be a part of the fun, while making a lasting impression on those
who matter most in your industry!
NECA 2005 swings into New Orleans Sept. 17-20, and with this
year's packed program will come over 8,000 electrical contractors to one
location - the NECA Show floor. Eighty percent of NECA Show attendees make the
purchasing decisions for their companies and will spend more than $7.5 billion
in electrical equipment this year. Don't let them leave the show floor without
making a connection with your company!
Raising the visibility of your business is easy with NECA
2005 Sponsorship Opportunities. There are a variety of ways you can show your
support for the electrical contracting industry while promoting your company.
To view a complete list of the sponsorship opportunities still available, visit
DuPont Receives Department Of Justice Subpoena on Teflon
E.I du Pont de Nemours
& CO. received a subpoena asking for information related to chemicals used
in nonstick pans that are believed to be linked to health problems, the company
The Wilmington, Del.-based
company said it will be “fully responsive.” The Federal subpoena calls for the
production of documents related to perfluorooctanoic acid and its salts, C8,
ammonium perfluorooctanoate, and FC-143 – key components used in the manufacturing
of non-stick coatings. The subpoena from the U.S. District Court for the
District of Columbia was served by the environmental crimes arm of the Justice
Department. “DuPont is committed to operate to the highest standards of
ethical behavior and environmental responsibility,” the Wilmington, DE,
chemical maker said in a press release. “We will be fully responsive to the
DOJ in this matter.”
A spokesman for DuPont
recently agreed to a $100 million settlement in West Virginia where the chemical
was found in drinking water, according to reports. The company also has been
in negotiations with the Environmental Protection Agency over how C8 breaks
down in the environment.
Muzzled by Minn. Pollution Agency
17MAY 2005 – A Minnesota environmental
scientist says her bosses are trying to stop her from speaking out about toxic
chemicals. The scientist works for the state agency run by a former 3M
employee (and current stockholder) who has lagged in addressing concerns about
drinking water contaminated by a toxic chemical in 3M’s Scotchgard.
• EWG Letter to MN Official
• DuPont Shareholders
Celebrate Strategic Victory
DOJ, and EWG continue to focus on PUBLIC SAFETY.
Criminal Probe for DuPont on
May 19, 2005
DuPont was served Thursday with a subpoena from the Justice Department's
environmental crimes unit requesting documents on a key Teflon chemical. DuPont
has already agreed to pay up to $340 million in a civil settlement for Teflon
pollution and is the subject of an EPA investigation into its cover-up of
studies of the chemical's health effects.
EWG Statement | Reuters Story | Associated
development gives some hope that DuPont will be held accountable for its
contamination of virtually every American's bloodstream with this toxic Teflon
chemical. A federal criminal probe should not be required to find out what a
company knew and when it knew it regarding a product's contamination of people
and the environment. It's a dramatic example of why we need a complete overhaul
of the regulatory system for this industry."
President Ken Cook
EWG is a
nonprofit research organization based in Washington, D.C., that uses the power
of information to protect human health and the environment. The group's
research on Teflon chemicals is available online at http://www.ewg.org/issues/PFCs/index.php
The world of chemicals and cabling
are married at the hip.
What affects one also affects the other. Recent troubling news about PFOA and
other toxic issues associated with FEP or Teflon have many concerned citizens
demanding the facts and answers to the public health questions.
Market Pulse: DuPont shareholders group asks for SEC probe
Group seeks financial disclosure of Teflon pollution case
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch)
-- The DuPont Shareholders for Fair Value coalition, a group of company
shareholders, said Tuesday that it is asking the Securities and Exchange
Commission to investigate whether executives at DuPont Co. are hiding
financially relevant information from investors. The group said it is also
calling on the SEC "to compel company executives to disclose data that
would forewarn investors about potentially costly health, safety and legal
liabilities at plants that use or produce perfluorooctanoic acid." The
chemical is the subject of an Environmental Protection Agency investigation of
potential health risks, the group noted. The DSFV coalition said it owns more
than 28,700 shares of DuPont.
Essex and Leviton Introduce 10 Gigabit Ethernet Over Copper Cabling System
Superior Essex and Leviton
Manufacturing jointly announced the introduction of NextLAN® 10Gc, a UTP copper
cabling system designed to support 10 Gigabit Ethernet transmission for 100
meters. NextLAN 10Gc is the first UTP cabling system to fully comply with the
latest draft ANSI/TIA standard for 10-Gigabit Ethernet cabling requirements
with a 4dB margin guarantee for Power Sum ACR.
10 Gigabit Ethernet systems
have been in use for several years over fiber optic cable like the NextLAN 10GF
50 micron laser optimized system. Only recently has the electronics industry
begun specifications for 10GBASE-T, a 10 Gigabit Ethernet protocol standard
designed to run over copper structured cabling. The data speeds afforded by
10GBASE-T are ten times the current maximum data speeds of copper networks. The
continued growth of data-intensive applications, (i.e., video imaging,
high-speed data storage, internet browsing, file sharing, etc.) is fueling the
need for 10 Gigabit Ethernet backbone networks, especially in corporate
offices, campuses, medical centers and data centers.
NextLAN 10Gc is the outcome
of several advancements in copper UTP cable and connectivity that collectively
provide a channel that is robust enough to support the most demanding test
scenarios for 10 Gigabit Ethernet transmission. The proprietary designs of the
new NextLAN 10Gc components (including 10Gain™ cable and eXtreme® 10G
connectors) provide customers with exceptionally matched electrical performance
and functionality, backward compatibility with legacy Leviton connectivity, and
a design that is as easy to install as the NextLAN Category 6 system.
"The demand for 10
Gigabit Ethernet over UTP copper cabling is being driven by economics and
familiarity," said Bill Slater, Enterprise Networking Manager for Leviton.
"10GBASE-T switches and NICs will be less expensive when they are
introduced than comparable fiber cards running 10GBE. For data centers and
SAN's that require 1 Gigabit Ethernet now, but want the infrastructure in place
for 10GBE later, a 10G copper system makes economic sense. In addition, many
users prefer the ease-of-installation advantage that copper has over optical
"10Gain UTP cable
provides exceptional internal and alien cross-talk performance without
resorting to an odd-shaped design, or extra elements that can slow
installations," said Dr. Paul Neveux, Director of Premises Cable Product
Management for Superior Essex. "For 10G Ethernet applications, Power Sum
ACR is one of the best indicators of channel performance because it is directly
proportional to the signal-to-noise ratio of the system and is the best gauge
of channel headroom. Because of this, we focused our system design on offering
the best Power Sum ACR margin in the industry."
"The new eXtreme 10G
connector introduces several technical breakthroughs, including a
patent-pending Cone of Silence™, which creates a "noise elimination"
zone that effectively blocks out EMI from adjacent connectors," said
Slater. "The technology imbedded in NextLAN 10Gc is so impressive that the
system performs as well as all-shielded 10G cabling systems, but of course
without the many drawbacks that accompany shielded cabling."
NextLAN cabling systems are
the result of joint engineering and testing efforts between Leviton and
Superior Essex Communications to create datacom cabling solutions. www.nextlansystems.com. www.superioressex.com.
Abandoned Cable Dilemma
Contractor Magazine - June 2004
money to be made, but hidden costs as well .
cables and wires are often installed as part of the initial electrical
installation for a facility and used to connect communications systems, control
wiring, speakers, fire alarms, computers and other limited-power applications
to their related equipment. In a remodel or when equipment is being upgraded or
added, old cables are usually abandoned and new cable installed. Must these old
cables be removed when installing new cables or can the cables be left for
future use? Whose responsibility is it to remove the old cables and is it a
hidden cost to the job or additional revenue?
hidden within various low-voltage articles in the 2002 National Electrical Code
(NEC) are definitions and sections of the articles dealing with abandoned
cables. Based on the 2002 NEC, abandoned cables must now be removed. This can
add a substantial amount of hidden labor to a job where the contractor is not
familiar with these clauses in the NEC and has not added this into the overall
bid. If the particular job has been competitively bid, the other bidders may or
may not have figured this cost into their bid and the added cost to your bid may
mean the loss of the job. Either way, an electrical inspector may require all
abandoned cables to be removed, even those cables that were abandoned during
previous installations, adding hidden costs to the job.
the type of termination and the cable use is slightly different for each
system, each definition of “abandoned” varies slightly. The abandoned cable
definition for Class 2, Class 3 and PLTC cables reads: “Installed Class 2,
Class 3 and PLTC cable that is not terminated at equipment and not identified
for future use with a tag.” The definition was written to ensure that only
cables that are not spare and truly abandoned in place must be removed. At
first glance, the simple answer may be to label all cables for future use but
this also requires extra labor that may not have been figured into the job.
However, the responsible contractor will understand the reason for the cable
removal and will remove any excess cable.
the application portion of each article for low-voltage and communications
cables is a sentence stating that abandoned cables shall not be permitted to
remain. Based on the definition of abandoned cable, any cable that is not
tagged or labeled for future use and not terminated at the equipment must be
removed. A close examination of this definition indicates that the cable must
be terminated at the equipment and identified for future use with a tag or a
label; however, the intent was to permit either termination at the equipment or
tagging of the cable to identify the cable for future use. Check with the
design engineer or the electrical inspector for the installation for a
clarification on this issue and what will be required for your particular
though most cables installed in a facility are limited-smoke or low
smoke-producing fireresistant cable, the proliferation and expanded use of
computers, sound systems, fire alarms, telephones and similar applications has
resulted in a massive amount of cables in a facility. Cables installed in
ducts, plenums, and other spaces for environmental air, as well as those in
areas of the building, are required to comply with certain NFPA and
Underwriters Laboratories Inc. standards for low smoke emission and fire
262, the Standard Method of Test for Flame Travel and Smoke of Wires and Cables
for Use in Air-Handling Spaces, limits the maximum peak optical density of the
smoke produced to 0.5 and the maximum average optical density to 0.15. The
purpose of the test for the maximum optical density level of smoke is to ensure
that, in a fire situation, only a certain of amount of smoke will be produced
where cable is installed in an environmental air duct, plenum, or other space.
1581, the Reference Standard for Electrical Wires, Cables, and Flexible Cords
provides a method of testing the cables for fire resistance and uses a vertical
cable tray with cables installed to test whether a fire in the cables will
spread to the top of the cable tray. This test is commonly called the vertical
tray flame test and is very effective in determining the fire resistance of the
large amounts of smoke are produced in these areas, the air movement in the
ducts, plenums, or other spaces will cause the smoke to be spread to other
areas within the occupancy and may affect the successful and safe evacuation of
the building. Responsible removal of abandoned cable will limit the amount of
smoke produced in a fire and provide a safer facility.
Ode is a staff engineering associate at Underwriters Laboratories Inc., in Research Triangle Park, N.C. He can be reached at 919.549.1726 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org . http://www.ul.com/regulators/ode/0604.pdf
with permission from Electrical Contractor Magazine
publication for the Electrical & Datacom Contractors www.ecmag.com
Holt Seminar Schedule Next 4 Months June through Sept 2005
Mike Holt Seminars are
packed with value.
out the Mike Holt Seminar Schedule Next 4 Months June through Sept 2005
is nationally recognized as one of America's most knowledgeable electrical
trainers. He has touched the lives of many thousands of electricians,
inspectors, contractors and engineers. His dynamic and animated teaching style
is relaxed, direct and fun. Perhaps Mike's best quality is his ability to
motivate his students to become successful.
is devoted to providing quality training seminars, videos, books and software
that enhances job performance, personal confidence and career growth. The
quality that sets Mike apart from the others is his ability to motivate his
students to become successful. Mike's experiences as an electrician, inspector
and contractor help him develop training programs that the electrician
understands and enjoys. His ability to take the intimidation out of learning is
reflected in the success rate of his students.
does seminars on Electrical Theory, National Electrical Code, Electrical Calculations, as well as Business Management. He also does seminars for magazines,
trade shows, inspector's groups, contractor's groups, industrial facilities,
and others interested in the National Electrical Code.
Mike Holt Seminar Schedule Next 4 Months June through Sept 2005
Cost-Effective, Time-Saving CADDY® SPEED LINK LD
Lighting and Installation Projects
SPEED LINK LD is a universal support system that quickly suspends static loads,
even at an angle. It is a cost-effective alternative to jack chain, threaded
rod and associated hardware in lighting and other installation projects. The
1.5 mm (0.059 in.) wire rope with a crimped-on hook holds working loads of up
to 20 kg (44 lb) with a 5:1 safety factor.
aesthetically pleasing locking device completes the assembly. This low-profile
stainless-steel device ensures stability and allows for additional vertical
adjustment after wire insertion. A small screwdriver releases the lock for fast
rope/hook assembly is made of galvanized steel as standard, but is also
available in stainless steel for applications where a higher level of corrosion
resistance is required. The system installs without drilling or tools and
allows objects to be hung at an angle – e.g., from sloped ceilings.
LINK LD is available in 2m (6.6ft), 5m (16.4ft) and 10m (32.8ft) lengths. It
works with a variety of CADDY® Fasteners including beam clamps and
purlin clips or can be looped directly around the beam.
versatile support system hangs lighting fixtures, speakers, alarm sensors,
signage and pipes, among other things. A convenient plastic sleeve keeps the
wire rope looped up until the contractor is ready to install. An optional
extension tool allows CADDY SPEED LINK LD to be installed from the ground. www.erico.com.
is a leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of precision-engineered
specialty metal products serving global niche product markets in a diverse
range of electrical, commercial and industrial construction, utility and rail
applications. The company is headquartered in Solon, Ohio, USA with a network of sales locations serving more than 25 countries and with manufacturing and
distribution facilities worldwide. ERICO’s well-known brand names include: CADDY®
fixings and fasteners; CADWELD® welded electrical connections;
CRITEC® surge protection devices; ERICO® rail bonds;
ERIFLEX® low-voltage components; ERITECH® lightning
protection and grounding; and LENTON® mechanical rebar splices.
Visit ERICO online at www.erico.com.
Maclean's Magazine - "Teflon Trouble"
100 years and now the second 100 years with a roar www.macleans.ca
Maclean's owes its origins to Toronto journalist/entrepreneur Lt.-Col. John Bayne Maclean. In 1905, the 43-year-old trade
magazine publisher purchased an advertising agency's in-house business journal
-- along with its 5,000-strong subscription base. The Business Magazine,
launched in October of that year, was a pocket-sized digest of articles
gathered from Canadian, U.S. and British periodicals. It sold 6,000 copies.
Inside its bright blue cover, the fledgling monthly anointed itself, "the
Cream of the World's magazines reproduced for Busy People." Its aim,
Maclean wrote a year later, was not "merely to entertain but also to
inspire its readers."
went through many incarnations over the next century. Within a few years,
Maclean changed the name to Busy Man's Magazine and began commissioning
articles before settling on Maclean's in 1911. The magazine started to
include coverage of politics and arts, and opened its pages to works of fiction.
Following the First World War, as the economy recovered, Maclean's was
published bi-monthly and kept up hard-hitting articles inspired by wartime
reporting. The future was bright until the Depression hit and revenues dipped;
the magazine devoted its pages to first-hand accounts of people's struggles to
federal election led to one of the magazine's most embarrassing moments: an
editorial proclaiming a Liberal win printed before the results were tabulated.
It hit newsstands the day after voters handed John Diefenbaker's Conservative
party a resounding mandate. The next issue of Maclean's featured the
retraction "We were Dead Wrong on Your Vote," calling the gaffe an
"unexampled case of editorial fat headedness."
were a time of turmoil both in the nation and the magazine masthead. There were
numerous changes in editorship during the decade, slowing in 1971 with the
appointment of Peter C. Newman to the top post. Maclean's began losing
money by the mid-60s -- the first time since the Depression -- and reverted to
a monthly schedule. But that was soon to change. In 1975, Newman increased the
frequency to bi-weekly and then again in 1978, issuing Canada's first newsweekly.
Anthony Wilson-Smith was named 15th editor of Maclean's. In an age of
instantaneous news delivery, his vision involves a shift away from simply
reporting hard news toward including more analytical features and fresh voices.
of chemicals and cabling are married at the hip. What affects one also affects the
other. Recent troubling news about PFOA and other toxic issues associated with
FEP or Teflon have many concerned citizens demanding the facts and answers to
the public health questions.
article Teflon Trouble by May 19, 2005 by Danylo Hwaleshka. Are PFC's ,
the compounds associated with pans, cabling, computers and clothes, truly
Cabling Industry Recent Financials
CDT Qrtly 2005
Cable Qrtly 2005
Certified Communications, Inc.
Certified Training Schedule
June– Sept, 2005
6/13 – 6/17 ITS
7/11 – 7/15 ITS
7/18 – 7/22 ITS
7/25 – 7/29 ITS
8/8 – 8/12 ITS
9/5 – 9/9 ITS
9/19 – 9/23 ITS
schedule is subject to change based on Customer preference and can be modified
to take place from 6PM to 10PM for a 2 week period.
(Ray) Craig RCDD/ITS Specialist
Richardson, TX 75081
Fire Safety Includes Toxicity Factors
and safety debate: Halogen-or not? By David Boothroyd
pages of Pennwell's Cabling Installation and Maintenance Magazine
While PVC is still the most widely used cable in
many countries, the use of low-smoke halogen (LSZH) is growing rapidly.
Low-smoke zero halogen (LSZH) cable has been
available for more than 20 years and has come to be widely used, especially
throughout Europe. It was developed as a response to the potential risks that
have resulted from the use of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) as the standard
insulating material for cabling.
If a fire
occurs, the halogens in PVC can generate toxic fumes-acid gases that sear the
eyes, nose, mouth and throat. The fumes can disorient victims, preventing them
from escaping the blaze. They can cause severe respiratory damage, and they can
kill. This is why a number of governments worldwide have standardized on LSZH
(To read the full article)
Inc. announced May 23, 2005 that John Norman has joined the Company as
Corporate Controller. Mr. Norman was formerly vice president and controller of
Graphic Packaging International Corporation in Golden, Colorado, and has 17
years experience in public accounting with PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in St. Louis and Denver. He is a native of St. Louis. Mr. Norman will be responsible for
coordinating and developing the Company's accounting systems and policies and
for leading its planning and analytical processes. He will report to Richard K.
Reece, Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer.
Inc., a maker of high-speed electronic cables, on May 23, 2005 said the board
authorized the repurchase of $125 million in common stock. Belden said the
company plans to buy back shares in the open market or through negotiated
transactions. As of March 31, the company had 47.3 million common shares
outstanding. "With our strong cash flow and cash balance we have the
flexibility to provide this value to shareholders now, while still maintaining
the resources we need to grow the business," said C. Baker Cunningham,
president and chief executive. www.beldencdt.com
Anixter on the Move
Anixter International Inc. Initiates Offer For The Shares Of
Infast Group plc
GLENVIEW, IL, May 26, 2005 – Anixter International Inc. (NYSE: AXE), a
leading distributor of communication products, electrical and electronic wire
& cable and a leading distributor of fasteners and other small parts (“C”
Class inventory components) to Original Equipment Manufacturers (“OEMs”), today
announced the initiation of an offer at a price of 34 pence per share for the
shares of Infast Group plc, (“Infast”), a U.K.-based distributor of fasteners
and other “C” class inventory components to OEMs (the "Offer").
The offer has been unanimously recommended by the Infast Board of Directors.
Anixter has received commitments to accept the offer from shareholders
representing approximately 58.70 percent of the 114.34 million outstanding
shares of Infast. The offer is subject to a number of conditions including a
minimum acceptance level of 90 percent.
In February 2005 Infast announced that it had reached an agreement to sell the
last of its manufacturing operations. That transaction completed a multi-year
restructuring program in which Infast sold a number of businesses unrelated to
its current fastener and “C” class parts distribution business. In its audited
financial statements for the financial year ended December 31, 2004 Infast
reported sales and earnings before interest, taxes and exceptional items of
$287.3 million (£157.1 million) and $5.7 million (£3.1 million), respectively,
from the continuing distribution operations which Anixter is proposing to
purchase. Currently Infast operates 25 distribution centers in the U.K. and 6 in the U.S. and in total employs approximately 900 people.
Based on the offer price of 34 pence per Infast Share, Anixter expects to pay a
total of $72.2 million (£39.47 million) for all of the outstanding and to be
issued shares of Infast. As a result of the Acquisition, Anixter will assume
the outstanding debt obligations of Infast which at December 31, 2004 totaled
$25.4 million £13.9 million). The purchase of the shares will be funded from
on-hand cash balances of Anixter.
Commenting on the proposed acquisition, Robert W. Grubbs, President and C.E.O.
of Anixter International said, “The addition of the Infast operations to our
existing OEM supply business is another significant step in positioning
ourselves as a leader in the supply of fasteners and other small parts to
original equipment manufacturers, service organizations and government support
operations. The Infast customer base adds to and complements the existing base
and multi-national customers we service today. Once this transaction is
complete we will have proforma annual 2005 projected sales in this market of
approximately $755 million.”
“As we have developed our position in this market place over the past three
years our ability to provide quality products along with reliable supply chain
services has positioned us well with the large multi-location and
multi-national customers we serve. Our geographic presence, financial strength
and focus on service give us the ability to capitalize on the opportunities in
the marketplace. The proposed acquisition, in addition to bringing important
new customers to our business, also adds to the scale of our operations and
brings a proven group of employees that will contribute to a continued focus on
enhancing our service capabilities,” continued Grubbs.
Concluding Grubbs said, “We expect this transaction to be immediately accretive
to earnings. The completion of this proposed transaction will enhance our
ability to compete effectively in this market on a global basis. Over time, as
we blend the strengths, skills and capabilities of the Infast operations with
our existing OEM Supply business, we expect the earnings contribution from the
combined business to grow in a meaningful way.”
General Cable Wins Frost & Sullivan Market Leadership
In the Automotive Aftermarket
California and Highland Heights, Kentucky – May 26, 2005 – After recent
analysis, Frost & Sullivan today bestowed its Market Leadership
Award upon General Cable Corporation (NYSE: BGC) as the top market participant
in the North American ignition wires sets aftermarket. This Award is given to
General Cable for exhibiting market share leadership through excellence in all
areas of the market leadership process—the identification of market challenges,
drivers and restraints and successful strategy development to address these
market dynamics. The Award also recognizes General Cable’s continually
demonstrated solutions for monitoring market changes.
Cable Automotive Team has implemented a sound marketing strategy to maintain
its leadership position even in the face of increased competition for a
shrinking installed base for ignition wire sets. The team is not content to be
a follower and provides the market with a strong model for success.
American ignition wire sets aftermarket is saturated with brands from
manufacturers and retailers,” said Frost & Sullivan Research Manager
Jasmine Sachdeva. “General Cable’s go-to-market strategy focuses on private
branding and supplying wire sets to retailers who are striving to provide end
users with diverse brands and product lines. By taking a strategic approach in
sharing information through their supply chain, the Company provides all its
departments with the ability to maximize revenue and stay ahead of the
technology and innovation curve,” she continued.
example of the General Cable strategy included the introduction of a product
line in November 2004 that replaced insulators on Coil-on-Plug (CoP)
applications to facilitate tune-ups for vehicles with these systems. This
innovation highlights General Cable’s commitment to integrating products
dealing with the next generation of ignition systems.
Cable is pleased to receive this Award from Frost & Sullivan in recognition
of our market leadership in our core automotive product category — ignition
wire sets,” commented Roger Roundhouse, Vice President and General Manager,
Automotive and Wire Harnesses & Assemblies Products. “We have a group of
people who are passionate about a common vision. This drive, coupled with our
unique private brand strategy, will enable General Cable to maintain its
leadership position in this category and continue to Deliver the Spark That
Moves the World.”
To view the Frost
& Sullivan Movers & Shakers Interview conducted by Research Manager
Jasmine Sachdeva: http://www.frost.com/prod/servlet/exec-brief-movers-feature.pag?mode=open&sid=38959402
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
Want to know more about how you can capture the business opportunities associated with integrated building systems? Mark your calendars for several key conferences and exhibitions.
AFCOM: April 17-21 Las Vegas www.afcom.com
BICSI SPRING: May 2-5 Las Vegas www.bicsi.org
BOMA: June 23-28 Anaheim http://s12.a2zinc.net/clients/Boma2004/Boma2005/
REALCOMM: June 27-28 Anaheim, CA www.realcomm.com/anaheim.htm
CONNECT 2005: June 28 Anaheim www.caba.org , www.ibfconferences.com
ACUTA: July 17 - 21 Gaylord Palms - Kissimmee, FL www.acuta.org/events/annual_conference/sce05.cfm
NECA: September 18-20, 2005 New Orleans www.necashow.org/
SFBF: Ft.Lauderdale, FL
BOMA Southern region conference. Memphis, Tenn
Data Center World (DCW): Las Vegas, NV
Broadband Wireless World: Las Vegas NV
Interop: Las Vegas, NV
2005 BICSI Spring Conference: Las Vegas NV
Green Design Solutions: Hospitals & Schools: Chicago, IL
13th National Conference on Building Commissioning: New York City, NY
Affordable Comfort 2005: Indianapolis, IN
VOIP: Beijing China
Sustainable Practices in Design and Construction: Maho Bay, St John U.S. V.I.
ACUTA Midwest Regional Workshop - "Strategic Tradeoffs in Campus Wireless Mobility": Chicago, IL - Hyatt Regency O'Hare
AIA National Convention & Design Expo: Las Vegas, NV
UTC Telecom: Long Beach CA
MAY 30-June 2
Broadband World Forum: Yokahama Japan
Greening the Heartland 2005:Cost, Practice & Policy: Chicago, IL
IEC: Chicago, IL
NFPA: Las Vegas, NV
Supercomm: Chicago, IL
Ecobuild America 2005: The Environmental Systems Techology Conference
The North American Commercial Real Estate Congress & The Office Building Show
BOMA: Anaheim, CA
Vicki Cummins 888-777-6956
REMEMBER TO RECYCLE, REDUCE AND REUSE