Alchemy-Spetec Blog

Repairing Dams with Polyurethane

Posted by Charlie Lerman on Nov 14, 2019, 11:06:41 AM

Repairing Dams with Polyurethane

Repairing Dams with PolyurethaneDams Across the U.S. in Dire Need of Repair

On a cold morning last March, Kenny Angel got a frantic knock on his door. Two workers from a utility company in northern Nebraska had come with a stark warning: Get out of your house.

Just a little over a quarter-mile upstream, the 92-year-old Spencer Dam was straining to contain the swollen, ice-covered Niobrara River after an unusually intense snow and rainstorm. The workers had tried but failed to force open the dam's frozen wooden spillway gates. So, fearing the worst, they fled in their truck, stopping to warn Angel before driving away without him.

Minutes later, the dam came crashing down, unleashing a wave of water carrying ice chunks the size of cars. Angel's home was wiped away; his body was never found.

"He had about a 5-minute notice, with no prior warning the day before," Scott Angel, one of Kenny's brothers, said.

State inspectors had given the dam a "fair" rating less than a year earlier. Until it failed, it looked little different from thousands of others across the U.S. — and that could portend a problem.

A more than two-year investigation by The Associated Press has found scores of dams nationwide in even worse condition, and in equally dangerous locations. They loom over homes, businesses, highways or entire communities that could face life-threatening floods if the dams don't hold.

Excerpted from AP: At least 1,680 dams across the US pose potential risk
By David A. Lieb, Michael Casey And Michelle Minkoff

Specialty Grouting of Dams with Polyurethane

The recently released news story excerpted above is bringing major attention to the widespread problem of deteriorating dam infrastructure. In most cases, cementitious grout is used to repair dams at risk. But there are certain types of geologies that cementitious grout cannot penetrate or gets washed out of. This is where specialty grouting with polyurethane (and microfine cement) comes in. The following products can be used alongside cementitious grout for optimal results:

Spetec PUR F400
This is a is a solvent and phthalate free, water reactive, hydrophobic, closed cell, low viscosity, shrink-free, flexible, one-component polyurethane injection resin.  It can be used to seal fine cracks in dams that cementitious grout cannot reach.

Spetec AG200
This is a is a three-component, water-swelling hydrogel based on acrylic that hardens into an elastic product.  It can be used to stablize loose soil around dams.

AP Microfine 10
This is a microfine cement that penetrates very small openings such as soil pores and microscopic rock fissures in order to improve strength and reduce permeability.  It can be used in conjunction with Spetec AG200 to add strength to soil stabilization repairs around dams.

While cemententious grouting is the most common grouting method used to stop water flows and strengthen soils for dams, specialty grouting with polyurethane and/or microfine cements can be used to supplement or even replace standard centmentious grouting in areas it has troubles in.

Want more info on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Seal Leaks, Stabilize Soil

Alchemy-Spetec Salutes America's Veterans

Posted by Stephen C. Barton on Nov 11, 2019, 10:00:00 AM

Alchemy-Spetec Salutes Americas Veterans

Alchemy-Spetec Salutes Americas VeteransMost people come to realize at some point in their lives is that nothing is free.  Least of all the precious freedoms we enjoy here in the United States of America.  The rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are not free.  They have been purchased with the blood of patriots.  The brave men and women of the United States armed forces work very hard and consistently put their lives on the line to protect these freedoms for the rest of their fellow Americans.

Appreciation for our military is an important part of the Alchemy-Spetec company culture.  For that reason, we are proud supporters of The Wounded Warrior Project.  We take pride in every courageous individual who puts on the uniform and risks their own safety to defend the American way of life.  Here at Alchemy-Spetec we have four out of five military branches covered by our employees, plus the National Guard.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank our own heroes and all US Veterans for their service to this great country.

Michael Binyaminov - Western Sales Representative - United States Army & National Guard

Tevin Campbell - Shipping & Receiving - United States Army

Charlie Lerman - Director of Technical Services Leak Seal Division - United States Navy

Austin Stedman - Production Technician - United States Air Force

Che-Pria Williams - Administrative Assistant - United States Marines (Spouse)

Happy Veterans Day!  Please be sure to thank a veteran today for protecting your life and your liberty.

Topics: All Posts

Automate Your Quote Prep, Customer Tracking, & Follow-Ups with Estimate Rocket

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Nov 8, 2019, 11:48:55 AM

Automate Your Quote Prep, Customer Tracking, & Follow-Ups with Estimate Rocket

Automate Your Quote Prep, Customer Tracking, & Follow-Ups with Estimate RocketAlchemy-Spetec is pleased to offer a customized version of the popular Estimate Rocket invoicing, client management and CRM tool for contractors.  The custom version includes material estimating calculators for Alchemy-Spetec geotech polyurethanes.  These calculators make it easy to figure out the amount of material you'll need for any given job.  Sign up now via this Alchemy-Spetec link to get the customized version!  (Visiting the Estimate Rocket site in any manner aside from the links we provide will get you the generic, non-customized version.)

Paperless Workflow

Creating impressive proposals has never been easier with Estimate Rocket’s easy-to-use business templates. Leave a lasting impression with professional paperless estimates and invoices you can create and deliver to clients in seconds. 

Job & Client Management

Keep your clients most important information organized and at your fingertips 24/7. The system automatically saves and organizes current and previous jobs, contact information, notes, and more.

Powerful CRM Tools

Stay connected with customer relationship management tools that keep you more responsive than ever before. Automated reminders and appointment scheduling let you know when to take action. Automated Follow-Ups stay in touch with your customers automatically.

Team Collaboration

Bring your entire team with an easy to use web-portal where crews can view appointments, field estimators can build estimates, and accountants can send out invoices.

Financial Reports

View up to the minute reports and know exactly where every job stands. Advanced reporting gives greater depth with detailed job statistics. Easily export to QuickBooks or other accounting software that imports CSV files.

Access on Any Device

Whether you’re on site with a customer or back in the office, you always have complete access to all features. Estimate Rocket works on Mac, PC, iOS, Android, Blackberry and any other web-enabled device.

AS Material Estimation Calculators

As mentioned previously, the Alchemy-Spetec customized version of Estimate Rocket features AS geotech material estimation calculators built in!

Sign Up for the AS Version of Estimate Rocket

Topics: All Posts, Business Tips

Alchemy-Spetec Welcomes New Midwest Regional Manager Erik Prinzing

Posted by Stephen C. Barton on Nov 5, 2019, 2:01:45 PM

Alchemy-Spetec Welcomes New Midwest Regional Manager

Alchemy-Spetec Welcomes New Midwest Regional Manager Erik PrinzingErik Prinzing is a driven sales professional with over 20 years’ experience in the construction sector. Beginning his career with ABC Supply Company, he’s worked in many parts of the industry, from new construction to remodeling both residential and commercial buildings. Over the years Erik has become well rounded in construction practices, with experience ranging from working in the field as a contractor for A.B. Edward Enterprises to assisting customers as a regional sales manager in the water, vapor and air barrier industry. He has developed a great many strong relationships within the industry. Through his drive, experience, and leadership, Erik has proven himself a valuable asset to countless professionals in the field. He is excited to bring his enthusiasm and experience to Alchemy-Spetec and support our customers in the Midwest region. With an early professional stint as a firefighter and emergency medical technician, Erik has the temperament to handle any and all customer support challenges that come his way. He’s also an avid outdoorsman, a certified chef, and volunteer at the Illinois Food Bank.

Jim Spiegel, VP Sales and Business Development, adds, “Erik brings many years of proven experience in the construction industry with an undeniable joy for being in the field with contractors. We're extremely confident that Erik's sales management acumen, coupled with his field support and work ethic capabilities, will offer customers and the Alchemy-Spetec team a reliable business partner and teammate.”

Want more info on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts

Slab Lifting and Leak Sealing in Cold Weather

Posted by Andy Powell on Nov 1, 2019, 10:53:58 AM

Slab Lifting and Leak Sealing in Cold Weather

Slab Lifting and Leak Sealing in Cold WeatherSlab Lifting in Cold Weather

Contrary to popular opinion, as a contractor, you don’t have to put up your equipment and rigs due to cold weather. There are many jobs to be done and many ways to keep your material conditioned. Use this season to your advantage and gain valuable business.

Seasonal attractions such as theme parks, for example, are a great place to start looking for winter work. Many of these parks (the ones that aren’t in Orlando) shut down for the winter and this is the time they do maintenance and repairs. Think of all the concrete lifting and leveling that can be done.

Read all about cold weather slab lifting markets, conditioning materials and more in our blog post Slab Lifting in Cold Weather.

Leak Sealing in Cold Weather

You have a variety of options for seeking leak seal jobs that are inside, out of the elements, during the winter months. (See the linked article below for a list of ideas.) If you’re still up for working outside during the winter months, you’re in luck because concrete contracts during colder weather. The contraction makes cracks open wider (thus easier to seal). One important point to understand is that cold weather requires you to make an extra effort to keep your materials and equipment warm.

Read all about cold weather leak seal markets, conditioning materials and more in our blog post Polyurethane Leak Seal in Cold Weather.

Want more info on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Lift Slabs, Seal Leaks, Business Tips

Reparing Dangerous Sunken Slabs in Warehouses and Factories

Posted by Andy Powell on Oct 29, 2019, 4:25:03 PM

Reparing Dangerous Sunken Slabs in Warehouses and Factories

Reparing Dangerous Sunken Slabs in Warehouses and FactoriesSafety is the number one priority for factory and warehouse managers across the country.  Emphasis is most often placed on training employees to wear the right personal protective equipment and observe safety procedures when operating machinery - and rightly so!  In addition, it's also important for management to consider the state of the concrete slab floors.  Sunken or rocking slabs can cause trip hazards and damage equipment.  Undetected voids underneath seemingly solid slabs create the risk of sudden collapse.

Alchemy-Spetec sells high-strength polyurethane resin to slab repair contractors all over North America.  We can help you find a well-trained contactor to inspect the concrete in your warehouse or factory. 

Call Alchemy-Spetec now at 404-618-0438 or...

Click below, fill out a form for a slab lift brochure & we'll contact you ASAP.

Download an Info-Packed Warehouse & Industrial Slab Repair Brochure!

Topics: All Posts, Lift Slabs

Eliminating Trip Hazards in Schools and Universities

Posted by Michael Binyaminov on Oct 24, 2019, 3:55:30 PM

Eliminating Trip Hazards in Schools and Universities

Eliminating Trip Hazards in Schools and UniversitiesMaintenance managers at schools and universities should be keenly aware of the dangers posed by sunken concrete slabs.  Campus walkway slabs can settle and create trip hazards for students and teachers.  Sunken concrete parking lot slabs can create trip hazards and damage vehicles.

Alchemy-Spetec provides high-strength polyurethane concrete leveling foam to contractors all over North America.  These highly trained professionals can spot danger areas during a routine inspection and lift concrete back into place if the slab is still intact and the conditions allow.  Given our extensive customer base, we can very likely help you find a contractor.

Wherever your campus is located, we'll do our best to connect you with a contractor in your area who can perform an inspection and provide you with a repair estimate.

Call Alchemy-Spetec now at 404-618-0438 or...

Click below, fill out a form for a slab lift brochure & we'll contact you ASAP.

Download an Info-Packed Slab Lift Brochure!

Topics: All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil

The Polybadger Compact Slab Lifting System

Posted by Michael Binyaminov on Oct 22, 2019, 3:47:10 PM

The Polybadger Compact Slab Lifting System

The Polybadger Compact Slab Lifting SystemAre you in the market for a tough and compact slab lifting system?  The PolyBadger is a reliable entry-level choice for new lifting companies focusing on small jobs.  It's also a great system for larger companies facing out-of-the-way jobs that may prohibit the use of a large rig. 

Benefits of the PolyBadger over a standard rig:

  • Lower Initial Investment
  • Less Equipment Needed
  • Easily Fitted To Truck, Trailer or Cart

In addition, the PolyBadger has considerable advantages over competing mobile cart systems.  Talk to an Alchemy-Spetec rep for comparisons to any other cart system you are considering.

Want more info on the PolyBadger?

Download an Info-Packed PolyBadger Lifting System Brochure!

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs

Thanks to All 2019 Training Participants

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Oct 17, 2019, 1:46:30 PM

Thanks to All Fall 2019 Training Participants

Last week we were happy to host over 30 participants at our Fall 2019 Leak Seal & Geotech Training event.  We enjoyed meeting everyone, learning about their experiences in the field, and sharing info about our products and application procedures.  

Wednesday, October 9th consisted of a joint exploration of polyurethane Leak Seal products and applications.  Classroom discussions were supplemented with live crack injection and permeation/curtain wall demos. Participants were also given the chance to mix products with accelerator on their own and watch the products set up in real time. The day was rounded out with discussions on estimating the cost of material and a look a few case studies.  The night was capped off with pizza and beer at a local brewhouse here in Tucker, GA.  (Unfortunately, for local Braves fans, their historic playoff meltdown was unfolding on the bar's TV screens at the time.)

Thursday, October 10th was all about polyurethane Geotech products and applications. Classroom presentations on lifting, soil stabilization and void fill were supplemented with live lifting and equipment demos. Product mixing workshops and estimating discussions filled out the afternoon.  The day was wrapped up with a look at ground penetrating radar and a case study presentation on a job that required both Leak Seal and Geotech solutions.

We very much appreciate everyone who attended and look forward to the Spring 2020 Training event.

Want to be alerted when Spring 2020 training registration is available?

Sign Up to Get Notified for Future Training Events

Topics: All Posts

The Big Bust - How I Ended Up Giving Product Demos at a Police Station

Posted by Michael Binyaminov on Oct 15, 2019, 2:00:17 PM


The Big Bust - How I Ended Up Giving Product Demos at a Police Station

The Big Bust - How I Ended Up Giving Product Demos at a Police Station

Ready for an entertaining story?  Well, buckle up, because this is a good one.  As the Western Regional Rep for Alchemy-Spetec, I usually keep product samples and mixing supplies in the trunk of my car.  I recently took my car in to the dealer for an oil change.  My girlfriend drove me home after I dropped the car off.  A few hours later, we picked the car up, went home and started getting ready to attend an Arizona Coyotes hockey game. 

I checked my voicemail after getting out of the shower.  I was surprised to hear very frantic sounding messages from my parents, the dealership, and um...the police!  My mother's voicemail went something like this: "Michael!  The police are at our house questioning us about possible bomb making supplies in your car?!!  What's going on?!!"  The message from the dealership was a bit more measured: "Michael.  You need to call us back IMMEDIATELY.  This is extremely serious.  Please call us the minute you get this voicemail."  It all became clear with the next message from the police department: "This is officer (name withheld for obvious reasons). I have a report that there were some suspicious chemicals in your trunk. Give me call at your earliest convenience."

I called the officer back first, at the number he provided.  I got his voicemail, so I left my explanation and contact info.  Then I called my mother to calm her down.  Finally, I called the dealership for a full explanation.  The manager, who knows me well and knows what I do for a living, laid it all out for me.  Apparently, an employee who doesn't know me too well decided to take a look in the trunk while they were doing the oil change.  Alarmed at what looked like suspicious chemicals, he quickly slammed the trunk shut, not sure what to do.  He said nothing to management.  His shift ended shortly thereafter.  He met up with some friends and told them this exciting story about possibly finding bomb making chemicals in the back of a car he was working on.  One of his friends became concerned and alerted the police.

Meanwhile, I had tickets to a hockey game.  I had replied to the officer's message, and with the knowledge that they had already been in contact with my friend who managed the dealership, I figured it was safe to catch the Coyotes game.  I would follow up again afterwards.  After watching my hockey team kick some butt (yes, we won), I was back home settling in when I heard a knock at the door.  It was, of course, the police.  To be honest, I was relieved to finally be able to explain everything directly to them.  I invited them in and started showing them product samples, etc.  They seemed to believe me at this point, but still asked me to come down to the department and do some mixing demos to show them exactly how the products work.  So, I did!  And that, my friends, is how I ended up giving product demos at a police station.  I can now rest assured that, if they ever have any concrete slab, soil or waterproofing issues - I will be the first person they call!  Who said working is chemical grouts wasn't exciting?

Want more info on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts