Education will expand usage of plastic pipe
I read Matt Griswold's Oct. 23 column on the refurbishment of water piping systems [``Plastic pipe is now proven commodity,'' Page 6] only to be envious that the U.S. water authorities are at least replacing it with something.
I have been involved with development of plastic refurbishment piping systems in the United Kingdom, where relining of old mains with swaged plastic pipes must be one of the most cost-effective ways of upgrading any piping system.
Even with the reduced inside diameter, the liners have a lower K value, which basically means a lower friction value, allowing more water to pass through with the same pumping forces.
The pipes are also joint-free, being welded into long sections before being pulled through the old mains with exit and entry points every 600 feet reducing delays in complete excavation, which is required for metal pipes. No scale buildup, no turbulent flow at socketed joints every 20 feet. No corrosion.
Alas, we still have some water authorities losing 30-35 percent of their clean water through leaks; this is more to do with ``shares than cares,'' where annual profits are more important. But it won't take much of a rise in price of a commodity to get the water companies to sit up and start improving their systems, just like the oil companies are opening up old wells or sifting sand for oil.
Another spoke in the wheel of progression to plastic can be the vintage of the local utilities directors; I've been subjected to ``You ain't from 'round these parts, are ya boy?''
With a little education, at all levels, we can safeguard the essential commodity of water for many years to come.
Pipe Coil Technology Ltd.
Tyne and Wear, England
U.S. must stipulate fair trade practices
Here I am again. Still reading Plastics News, and not at all surprised at what I see.
It will be five years on Oct. 12 that I was forced to close my doors after 20 years in an injection mold building business. I was involved with molding for more then 10 years before that. After more than 30 years in the plastics industry, for the last five years I have taken jobs from cab driving to maintenance in a nursing home just to survive. Now the people publishing the industry's news are finally realizing what our trading with a country that does not play by the rules is doing to them.
All I will say is: Brace yourself. You are going to end up just like me if the imbalance in our trade with other nations is not brought under control.
Robert J. Grosse
Former President of Grosse Tool Inc.
Sun Prairie, Wis.