Thursday, April 21, 2011

Biggest progress bar in Calgary possibly the world

I've enjoyed watch the Bow go up.  Watching it climb over the horizon when walking along nose creek or other parts of town.  It is sign of the drive that makes Calgary the city it is.  Looking at the side of it from the North I noticed the floor numbers which show how far the building has progressed.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Green Chips ????

Excellent article in the Calgary Herald (I know a rarity), syndicated from somewhere (Pepsico publicity department?).
Can you beat this from Walkers Crisps (Chips) in the UK:
Potatoes are 80% water, most of which is lost as steam when 350,000 tons of spuds are sliced and fried annually at the factory. Seal hopes to condense the steam, possibly with a system of cooling tubes, and reuse the captured H2O to clean equipment, help wash potatoes along manufacturing lines, and even irrigate the shrubs outside. The method could save the plant $1 million a year. "Lots of people think we're nuts," says Seal. "We're trying to push the boundaries to make a difference."
Joke is for the Brits only

There are 3 main reasons to do Green manufacturing; 1 for your own ethical reasons, 2 to look good, generally known as Green-washing and 3rd to improve your environmental impact and save money.
These examples hit reason 3 head on. Green shouldn't be about looking green but being green and putting more green-back into your pocket.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Poke Yoke, Bikes and Safety

Poke Yoke, bikes and safety don't seem a natural combination.  The rear wheel on my bike I knew was coming to the end of its life, when that would be I didn't know.  And the integrity of a real is an important issue, a real safety issue.  With lots of stop start cycling in Calgary with all the stops signs and the age of the wheel, the wheel has undergone a lot of braking action. Most brakes on bikes use the rim as the braking surface. This surface wears and at some point the rim either fails or the braking surface detaches from the rim. This is what happened to me, the braking surface started to come loose and each time the wheel rotated it rubbed up against the brakes.  Letting me know something serious was up.
Next step was to get the wheel fixed, so off to Lifesport in Kensington.  Wheel building is a skilled job and one best left to the experts.  First step was to choose a new rim. For the type of use this wheel gets (all year cycling and some cyclocross racing) there were two choices the Mavic Open Sport or Open Pro. I'm a snob, I was replacing a Open Pro rim so I went with the Pro again, but I did think about it. Ok only for a couple of miliseconds.

The Sport comes with this lovely black line along the rim:, its actually a wear groove :
Actually its a wear groove about 1.5mm deep. When you can no longer see or more likely feel with your fingers its time to replace the rim and stay safe.
The Pro is lighter and doesn't have the structural shape to carry a wear line
Of course I paid the extra $30 and went with the lighter rim, but no Poke Yoke wear groove and a little less safety knowledge down the road.