Wednesday, 24 December 2008
Tuesday, 23 December 2008
Monday, 22 December 2008
Don Marsh, the window cleaner from Gainesville, Florida talks about the most fundamental reasons why you should or should not start a business.
Remember, if you are looking for a certain video, just put in your search term in the top left search box at the top of the blog to find what you are looking for i.e. Wagtail.
Sunday, 21 December 2008
At a time when some companies are slashing costs and laying off workers, Bend’s GlasWeld Systems Inc. is having the best year in its 25-year history. That’s according to company President Mike Boyle, who prefers the title chief visionary officer. Earlier this month, GlasWeld acquired a Las Vegas-based competitor and is moving it to Bend. GlasWeld, which is privately-held, now has 16 employees, but Boyle expects the company will double in size in the next two years as it absorbs its competitor and continues to expand. Boyle has helped the company grow from a “garage-type” business that built and sold windshield repair kits to an industry authority that is shaking up the way glass manufacturers do business.
Its original line of business is windshield repair kits and training. According to Boyle, the company is the world’s largest manufacturer of windshield repair kits. GlasWeld’s system uses a vacuum tool that removes moisture and contaminants from a windshield crack or ding and then injects a resin into the affected area. The resin is then cured with an ultraviolet lamp. Boyle said repairing a windshield is safer than replacing a windshield, as the factory bond between the windshield and the vehicle frame isn’t easily duplicated by third-party contractors. Several years ago, GlasWeld patented a system to repair scratches without altering the optics of the affected glass. In other words, it could repair a scratch, using a proprietary compound and special buffer without distorting the glass around the scratch as buffing alone can do.
It works on windshields, but GlasWeld found it also worked on flat glass, the industry term for windows and other architectural glass. This presented the company with more than a few growth opportunities. Boyle said glass manufacturers typically send 6 percent of their production to the dump. Boyle said his company’s systems can salvage 80 percent of that glass.
In an era where waste is unacceptable due to negative environmental perceptions and impact to the bottom line. Boyle said glass manufacturers are turning to GlasWeld to help them keep costs down both in the plant and the field. “The reason we’ve gone (with GlasWeld is) we do expect to save on our service costs and the amount of glass we throw away,” said Kim Flannery, engineering director for Milgard Windows and Doors in Tacoma, Wash. Milgard’s windows have a lifetime warranty, Flannery said. To replace a scratched piece of glass in the field is expensive and time-consuming, but with GlasWeld’s system, it can take one Milgard technician as little as five minutes. And it doesn’t alter the optics, which is something Flannery had never seen before.
“The reason we never got excited about this in the past was because other scratch-repair technology changed the characteristics of the glass,” Flannery said. “If you looked at it just right, you knew something had been done, but so far that has not been an issue here, and that seems to be the thing I’m most impressed with.” That’s one prong of GlasWeld’s growth, Boyle said. Another is the company’s burgeoning forensic glass services. Boyle half-jokingly calls it Glass Scene Investigations, a play on the popular television show “CSI,” or Crime Scene Investigation.
As Boyle explained, when developers discover that the windows installed in their projects, be it skyscrapers or luxury condos, are scratched, they want to know whom to bill for the repairs: the manufacturer, the shipper, the installer, the window cleaner or the mason who may have accidentally nicked a window with his trowel.
Boyle said his company can determine from the damage who is to blame. “We know more about glass than most of the people who produce it,” Boyle said. In the past few years, GlasWeld has been called to assess the glass in several high-profile projects, including the 57-floor Comcast Center in Philadelphia and the Wynn Las Vegas casino in Nevada. At the Wynn, Boyle said, a carpenter accidently scratched the front windows of a jewelry store three days before the casino opened. The scratched windows cost roughly $60,000 and had taken six months to produce, meaning no immediate replacements were available. Boyle sent over a GlasWeld contractor who spent the next three days repairing the glass.
A similar incident happened at the Four Seasons Resort in Jackson, Wyo., he said. A developer had discovered the windows in his luxury condos were scratched. Rather than replace the windows, the developer hired GlasWeld to remove the scratches. It took a few months, but GlasWeld was able to complete the task, at considerable savings to the developer, Boyle said.
Throwing glass away is expensive, he said. But several years ago, Boyle came to the realization it’s also environmentally unsound. Only bottled glass is recycled, he said, while windshields and flat panel glass usually end up in landfills. Windshields can’t be recycled cost-effectively because they have petroleum-based laminate layered between the two panes of glass that make up a windshield. Windows and other architectural glass can’t be recycled cost-effectively because they are usually coated with anti-glare or energy-conservation coating and are affixed to metal or wood frames.
The glass can be ground up, but it’s an expensive process. Most of the time, it goes into the landfill, where it sits, practically forever, he said. Glass, after all, is melted sand. With that environmental message in mind, and adopting a polar bear as the marketing tool, GlasWeld several years ago began growing its glass repair business. The company also changed some of its business practices to keep in line with its message, such as switching from incandescent to fluorescent bulbs, buying a commercial-grade printer to print marketing materials on demand rather than in bulk and reducing packaging. And it’s paid off, Boyle said. “We started building a message of sustainability … so now we’re saving money and getting more market share,” Boyle said. Boyle wants to expand the company’s sustainability message and in the spring plans to host a conference in Sisters for glass industry executives worldwide to share its message. “Our ultimate goal is to become a Baldrige winner,” said Boyle, referring to the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award handed out annually by the U.S. president to businesses that show leadership and other exemplary business practices. “To be worthy of that award, that’s when we hit our stride,” Boyle said.
Saturday, 20 December 2008
All work and no fun is not good for anyone. Here's a technique developed to take care of that prerequisite. But don't let that fool you. It's a perfectly viable technique of doing windows, and you can express your artistic side at the same time. Great for killing time on a Friday afternoon.
You've heard of the jitterbug and the macarena. You've seen The Circler. Continuing our fun series, watch The Swirl. For some real serious speeds, use longer squeegee 3X4 adjustable channels. For French windows, use the MultiSqueegee®.
Friday, 19 December 2008
This is the first production BIPV (building integrated photovoltaic) product of its kind, an enclosed super tempered glass window system, with a patent pending, fully integrated, multi-tier photovoltaic and heat insulation technology. Current production lines are capable of producing window sizes up to 9’ x 9’ (2.74m x 2.74m) with comprehensive options, such as fire and bullet proofing, to meet design, weather, climate, and building code requirements.
The RSi PV-Glass Window uses sunlight to generate electricity, reduce heat, and provide a semi-transparent window that allows for privacy, while maintaining a comfortable level of visibility to the outside world. At the same time, RSi PV-Glass Windows provide a 100% reduction in Ultraviolet and Infrared radiation, adding an extra level of protection not offered by standard glass windows.
RSi embedded many smart home technologies into the complete window system, including an optional built-in electrical privacy curtain, to completely block out an already shaded glass window, and a new technology that converts the entire window into a light panel.
RSi’s vision is of buildings that harvest their own energy from unlimited renewable sources. What the company ultimately proposes to do is to eliminate the need for electrical power plants, as well as the grid infrastructure so that the building itself becomes truly autonomous and fully sustainable in terms of electrical power.
Since one of the biggest heat losses from a home is through a glass window, it looks like RSi has a winning combination, stopping heat loss on cold days and keeping heat out on hot days, while generating electricity at the same time. Let’s hope the opaque windows also stop birds flying into windows and then the only remaining technical challenge is implementing self-cleaning windows.
Thursday, 18 December 2008
A little light hearted comedy leading up to Christmas. Here are some clowns showing you how window cleaning could be done. The first video are the replicants & the second, Mr. Sanchez shows us how to utilise those window cleaning tools with a little scrim talk from Phil as well.
Here are the originals for you..
More from Matt & Phil...
Wednesday, 17 December 2008
Another installment from Mark Strange of "Beautiful View" from Toronto, Canada gives us a few more unbiased reviews of products in the window cleaners workplace. This time his opinion on the Unger ErgoTec® XL handle in this weeks edition of "Tool Talk."
Sean the salesman, from window cleaning resource gives us an insight into his day to day life before he shoots out to snowboard.
Kevin, the window cleaning business coach recently gave everyone the chance to win $200 of goods over on WCR to find the best flyer or template. Above is the synopsis of the winner from the entries given. More information on the new monthly dossier here. Below is Kevins latest advise on car dealerships & profitability..
Hotel manager who cleaned windows: The winners of the South Cheshire Chamber Business Awards 2008, held in association with the Chronicle, were announced at a ceremony at Crewe Hall Hotel. In this weekly series we are highlighting each of the winners and the secrets of their business success. Hotel manager Steven Hesketh seized upon a window of opportunity to climb the hospitality ladder. The 30-year-old former window cleaner sparkled at the annual South Cheshire Chamber of Commerce Business Awards 2008, taking the title of Young Business person of the Year, which he won jointly with Jonathan Mullarkey of Willaston House Business Centre. Father-of-three Steven, who lives with his wife in Chester, headed the opening of the Ramada Encore hotel on Crewe Business Park in Electra Way only two months ago in October.
Business has been steadily growing since, and Steven says the outlook for 2009 is bright despite the credit crunch. His rags-to-riches career story struck a chord with the awards judges. Steven said: “I started as a window cleaner at a resort in Australia while I was still at school 16 years ago, and it was then I fell in love with the industry. “I moved to Australia with my parents when I was one and returned in 1998. My first job here was at the Chester Crowne Plaza 10 years ago as a receptionist. So all my learning has been on the job. He is responsible for a team of 32 staff at the Ramada Encore hotel, overseeing their development while chipping in with whichever job that needs doing at the time.
Soccer fan Michael Sheilds is waiting to hear the word that he is to be freed from jail with a royal pardon. Two High Court Judges ruled that Justice Secretary Jack Straw was wrong to decide that he was powerless to grant a pardon because the conviction happened overseas. In their deceions the judges said Michael qualifies for a pardon since in British law he is "morally and technically innocent". It is widely accepted that Liverpool supporter Michael, 22, was a victim of mistaken identity and wrongly convicted of the attempted murder of a barman in Bulgaria. But he was kept locked-up because of tangle of international red tape and politics. Michael's father, window cleaner Mike Sheilds (pictured) said: "We are thrilled at this decision. "Jack Straw knows Michael is innocent and he should not spend a single day longer behind bars.
The gift of money: With cash being tighter than ever, many Britons are hoping their stockings will be filled with the gift of money instead of traditional Christmas presents this year. New research from Halifax has shown that more than a third (35%) of Britons intends to send money as a gift this Christmas, with children also set to receive money in the form of savings, as friends and relatives choose to open a savings account rather than purchase the latest toys from the high street. Furthermore, the UK's milkmen and window cleaners will receive similar tips to last year as the credit crunch doesn't seem to have impacted people's generosity this Christmas. Most of the UK's milkmen, window cleaners, bin men and paper boys can breathe a sigh of relief as 80% of 'tippers' say they will be paying the same as last year, with 17% saying they will pay more. However, it will be the luck of the draw for service providers in the East Midlands this year as the region has the highest percentage of people planning to tip more (24%), but on the flip side, has the highest number of people who intend to tip less (7%) compared to the rest of the UK.
Tuesday, 16 December 2008