Alchemy-Spetec Blog

Starting Up a Slab Lifting Business

Posted by Andy Powell on May 18, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Starting-Up-a-Slab-Lifting-Business

Body - Starting-Up-a-Slab-Lifting-BusinessIn this post, I provide an overview of a series of articles I wrote in 2018 on the basics of starting up a slab lifting business.

Subjects Covered in This Series

In this blog post series, we address some of the key points and considerations that slab-lifting startups frequently face. With so many years of market experience, we are uniquely positioned and qualified to offer this guidance. Because we are passionate about what we do, we are motivated to be part of your success story! Some of the topics we will cover include:

So You’re Thinking About Starting a Slab Lifting Company: Key Considerations

Slab lifting is an economical alternative to complete concrete replacement, be it a simple sidewalk repair or providing a cost-effective remedy for an entire building foundation.

If someone asked you to drive to Seattle, would you get in your car and take off, or would you look at a map first? A business and marketing plan is the roadmap for your slab lifting/concrete leveling business. It will help you define and stay true to your path, and it’s a tool you will need to attain startup financing.

Whether your goal is to launch a slab lifting venture that caters to home or business owners, you also will need a dependable, knowledgeable supplier who will not only sell you slab lifting pumps, guns and foams - but also serve as a trusted advisor.
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Slab Lifting Market Hot Zones

Once you’re ready to make the move to start up a slab lifting business, one of your first areas of focus should be identifying and defining your service areas and your potential customer base within each sector or area. Broadly speaking, there are three viable market segments to explore for slab lifting services: Residential, Commercial, and Municipal.
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Selling the Customer: Why Polyurethane Slab Lifting Is the Better Choice

The first question any engineer will ask is “Does the solution fit the needs of the application?” When it comes to structural foams used for slab lifting repair projects, you can confidently answer “yes.” But if you want to guide your customer to a concrete leveling repair solution, you should also be able to illustrate the pros, explain the cons, and enunciate the selling points.
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Marketing Your Slab Lifting Business

Marketing your new slab lifting business takes time and the right approach. If your slab lifting business is a small to medium-sized operation, tools and strategies that increase your market presence and help you attract leads are extremely important.
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Essential Gear for Starting Your Next Generation Slab Lifting Business

Slab lifting with polymers is rapidly replacing old technologies because it’s fast, strong, doesn’t shrink, and has a low impact on the environment. So it’s no surprise that we get a lot of inquiries from contractors interested in adding this service, in addition to individuals wanting to create a startup slab lifting business. So what exactly are we talking about in terms of the essential gear?

A slab lifting rig is a rolling business unto itself. It is a self-contained, turnkey, mobile unit that has all of the equipment necessary to perform the work. There are a variety of configurations but all of these setups will contain the following: Trailer or Box Truck, Power Source, Compressed Air System, Fluid Transfer System, Proportioner Pump, Heated Hoses, and Impingement Gun. Let’s look at these in more detail.
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Want more information on Alchemy-Spetec geotech products and equipment?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs, Business Tips

Use AP Pump Saver 195 to Reduce Isocyanate Contamination in Your Pump Lube Reservoir

Posted by Colt Hullander on Apr 29, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Use AP Pump Saver 195 to Reduce Isocyanate Contamination

Body - Use AP Pump Saver 195 to Reduce Isocyanate ContaminationAs mentioned in this previous blog post, AP Pump Saver 195 can be used to lubricate and protect single-component pumps. Now we’ll look at how it can be used in two-component pumps to reduce isocyanate contamination in the lube reservoir.

Recent field tests have proven that AP Pump Saver 195 rejuvenates and restores seals on the A-side of two-component proportioners. Seal deterioration is the main cause of isocyanate leaking into your pump lube reservoir. Healthy seals will stop this contamination. Simply empty your pump lube reservoir and replace the lube or DOP with AP Pump Saver 195.

Want more information on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs

A Competitive Edge for Contractors

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Apr 15, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - A Competitive Edge for Contractors

Body - A Competitive Edge for ContractorsEditor's Note: An earlier version of this article was published under the title Develop Your Competitive Edge. 

In today's fast-paced infrastructure repair market, you need every advantage you can get. At Alchemy-Spetec, the success of your business is our top priority. You gain a significant competitive edge over your competition with access to the widest selection of premium materials and equipment, plus rock-solid reliable technical and marketing support. Our entire company culture is built around ensuring your success in this industry.

Polyurethane – Quality and Selection

Alchemy-Spetec offers one of the most technologically advanced grout product lines currently on the market, We offer a wide variety of leak seal materials, including injection resins for sealing water leaks in cracks, curtain grouting foams for sealing challenging/gushing leaks, acrylic injection resins that penetrate thin cracks and saturate soil, epoxy resins for structural repair and preventative waterstop products. We also offer a wide variety of geotech materials, including slab lifting foams, deep-soil lifting foams, soil stabilization foams,. The superior quality of these materials guarantees fewer callbacks from your customers. Many of these products are also certified for contact with potable water, making them safer for the environment.

Equipment and Accessories Selection

We’re a one-stop-shop for all things polyurethane concrete repair, with one of the most versatile equipment and accessory product lines in the industry. Once you’ve picked out the product that best fits your needs, we can provide it all: pumps, hoses, packers/ports, and specialty accessories.

Tech Support – Experience and Dedication

Do you need technical support? You’re in luck—we’re home to the industry’s premier technical support squad. Averaging decades of experience, we also pride ourselves on being incredibly responsive. For example, our team was once called on to assist with a large metro project in the Western United States. The customer informed us at 4 pm on Monday evening that assistance was needed at 9 am the very next day! Our Technical Services Director, Vice President, and Western Regional Sales Manager traveled to the site Monday evening to help diagnose the location of the leaks and develop an action plan. Our Technical Services Manager remained on site for two more days to ensure that the project was successful. Depending on the size and scope of the project, response time and participating team members may vary, but this story serves to illustrate the lengths we will go to assist customers.

Training and Education

We offer the industry's most thorough training and education for both leak seal and geotech polyurethane infrastructure repair. This includes job site training/consulting, online educational content, and training workshops at distributor locations - not to mention one of the most educational blogs in the industry.

Marketing Support

Our marketing department provides qualified customers with product application illustrations and photos for use on websites, customized brochure PDFs for printing, and truck signage graphics. We also offer the use of our educational videos and animations. Lastly, we’re available for guidance on everything from online lead capture strategies to internet advertising, and more.

We’re Committed to Your Success

The overriding theme here is our commitment to your success. Obviously, this is not totally altruistic in nature.  The more successful you are, the more materials and equipment you buy.  But it is 100% genuine.  Our entire team understands the relationship between YOUR success and OUR success.  This point of view is thoroughly ingrained in our company culture.

Want more information on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: Repair Seawalls, Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs, NSF Certification, Seal Leaks, Stabilize Soil, Business Tips, Repair Cracks, Waterstop, Deep Lift, Floor Repair, Fill Voids

Geotech Equipment - Slab Lifting, Soil Stabilization, Seawall Repair

Posted by Colt Hullander on Apr 8, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Geotech Equipment

Body - Geotech Equipment

Rigs & Pumps for Polyurethane Slab Lifting

Entry-Level Rig

This rig features a hydraulic PH-2 proportioner. It's in a 16' v-nose trailer and has a gas powered air compressor and generator. We have many contractors with this set up doing everything from residential to D.O.T work.

Mid-Level Rig

This rig can either be a 18' or 20' trailer that happens to be built around the PH-2 proportioner. This setup is made for the contractor who wants stellar results in an affordable price range. This package boasts a 22 KW diesel powered generator and an electric air compressor.

Advanced Level Rig

This rig is similar to the mid-level rig with a larger PH-40 proportioner. These rigs come in 20'-plus size trailers and box trucks. They and are powered by 35 KW Stateline Diesel (John Deere) generator sets and also include electric air compressors. This setup is ideal for larger jobs.

PolyBadger Mobile Lifting Unit

The PolyBadger lifting system is tough and compact. This system is an affordable entry-level option for new contractors, as well as an extremely portable addition to the experienced contractor’s arsenal. The PolyBadger is a lot less expensive than your standard 20 foot trailer rig. The set up is simple and requires minimal equipment. The entire system can easily fit in the back of a pickup truck!

Polyurethane Soil Stabilization & Seawall Repair Pumps

PolyShark Pump for Larger Jobs

Single-Component Geotech Pump Skid
The PolyShark system is a custom pump skid for installation of single-component polyurethane geotech resins. This world-class skid set up is essential for large scale seawall repair, soil stabilization, and void fill projects. The PolyShark includes a gas-powered high-pressure injection pump, two hose reels, and flow meters.

Gas-Powered High-Pressure Injection Pump
A step up for projects that require greater power and output, this custom modified pump is our best-selling gas over hydraulic piston machine, favored by contractors who want to complete large application jobs in record time with high profit margins. The hydraulic ram fluid section is moved front and center in the configuration for easier maintenance and control.

High-Pressure Hose Reels with Stainless Steel Ball Bearings
High-pressure design guarantees durability when used with the high-pressure single-component pump. The construction is completely corrosion resistant and the stainless steel ball bearings, hardware, and manifolds are stronger than the aluminum parts on standard hose reels. The ball bearing-driven hose reels operate smoothly because they contain no bushings. (Bushings easily wear out.)

Flow Meters
Two high-pressure flow meters are capable of recording the exact amount of product pushed through the hose lines. This allows for precision material-use tracking.

Titan 440 Pump for Smaller Jobs

Pumps like the modified Titan IMPACT 440 electric injection pump are ideally suited for residential, property maintenance and small commercial applications.

MixMaster Pro Slab Lifting Gun

The MixMaster Pro was designed based on years of feedback from slab lifting contractors working in the field. Every known point of frustration and difficulty has been addressed in this sturdy, single-purpose gun. Further benefits include a lower cost of consumables (you can reuse ports with this gun), beefy check valves designed to handle the back pressure, and a short 10-minute breakdown/cleaning session at the end of each day. Not to mention the fact that this gun is a production BEAST - no leaky port connections, no fumbling with clamps. Watch your man hours on each project shrink accordingly. Did we mention you’ll have less replacement part orders? There are only a few inexpensive replacement parts on this gun - PERIOD.

Want more information on geotech equipment and products?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: Repair Seawalls, Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil

Leak Seal Equipment - Crack Injection, Curtain Grouting, Waterstop

Posted by Charlie Lerman on Apr 6, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Leak Seal Equipment

Body - Leak Seal Equipment

Polyurethane Leak Seal Pumps

Alchemy-Spetec offers world-class Titan electric injection pumps for sealing both small and gushing leaks as well as filling voids behind and below structures.  We modify these pumps to optimize them for polyurethane injection.

IMPACT 440 Electric Injection Pump
The IMPACT 440 is an advanced electric injection pump that’s ideally suited for residential, property maintenance and small commercial applications. This pump is the industry standard.

PowrTwin 8900 Plus Electric Injection Pump
The PowrTwin 8900 Plus is favored by contractors who want to complete large application jobs in record time with high-profit margins.

Polyurethane Leak Seal Accessories

Alchemy-Spetec offers a wide variety of accessories for polyurethane leak seal applications:

High Pressure Crack Injection Valve
This crack injection valve allows you to control resin flow at the point of injection and turn an airless sprayer into an injection pump.

Flush Wand
Use the flush wand to flush concrete dust from the holes you have drilled for crack injection.

High Pressure F-Valve Assembly
Twin streaming is a technique in which you use a high pressure F-valve to inject resin AND water at the same time. As you can see in the photo, the F-valve has two supply connections – one for water and one for resin. The water and resin come into contact before they exit the coupler.

Oakum
AP Oakum is an oil-free dry jute rope that seals cracks and slows down gushing water during leak repair. Oakum can be used alone or in combination with Alchemy-Spetec leak seal resins.

Ports/Packers
Alchemy-Spetec offers pretty much all of the required ports/packers you could possibly need for your next chemical injection project. 

Waterstop Products

Waterstop products are designed to prevent leaks from occurring in new construction.

Injection Tube System
The Spetec Injection Tube System is used in conjunction with the Spetec PUR F400 or Spetec PUR H100 as a primary waterstop in cold joints and pipe joints. This system can also be used in retrofit applications for expansion joints and other wide cracks or joints measuring over 3/8 of an inch.

Spetec SST500
SST500 expanding waterproof strips are simply fastened onto an existing joint.  When in contact with water in a confined space, SST500 will swell and stop the infiltration. SST500 remains consistent in its performance throughout its life cycle and the flexibility allows it to fill voids and cracks in the immediate surrounding area.

Want more information on leak seal equipment and products?

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Seal Leaks, Waterstop

AP Pump Saver 195 - Lubricate and Protect Single Component Pumps

Posted by Colt Hullander on Mar 16, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - AP Pump Saver 195 - Lubricate and Protect Single-Component Pumps

Body - AP Pump Saver 195 - Lubricate and Protect Single-Component PumpsAP Pump Saver 195 is a specially formulated oil-based lubricant and protectant. It was designed for use in single-component polyurethane pumps. 

Applications

  • Lubricating and protecting oil cup section of Poly Shark pumps.
  • Lubricating and protecting packings and seals on other single component pumps.

Advantages

  • Greatly extends the life of the pump packings.
  • Rejuvenates old, worn seals. 
  • Decreases the amount of resin leaking into the oil cup.

After single component pumps have been thoroughly flushed with AP Flush 121, circulate AP Pump Saver through the system for at least 20 minutes.  AP Pump Saver 195 is supplied in 5 Gallon Pails (18.9 Liter Pails) with a removable lid.

Want more information on Alchemy-Spetec Geotech products?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: Repair Seawalls, Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Stabilize Soil

Stabilizing Slabs in an Omaha Warehouse with the PolyBadger

Posted by Erik Prinzing on Feb 23, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Stabilizing Slabs in an Omaha Warehouse with the PolyBadger

Body - Stabilizing Slabs in an Omaha Warehouse with the PolyBadgerNot too long ago, I visited my customer Melvin Sudbeck’s company, Sudbeck Construction, on a warehouse job. They were called in by the property owner because he had noticed four slabs that were shifting up and scraping against a wall when forklifts crossed them. The crew drilled a couple of preliminary holes in the slabs for diagnostic purposes and discovered voids underneath ranging from 12-18 inches in depth.

The Sudbeck team injected 35 gallons of AP Lift 430 beneath the slabs to stabilize them. This high-strength polyurethane foam provides a solid, reliable, long-lasting base underneath the concrete to prevent future shifting or sinking. These forklifts were larger than your standard model, so it was important to use tough, strong material for stabilization. After the initial four slabs were stabilized, we walked around with the plant manager and a few other employees as they pointed out more unstable concrete that was shifting underneath the weight of these massive forklifts. The workers who had to drive over these rocking slabs said they actually felt jolted when they hit these hazard areas.

We explained to the plant manager that the Sudbeck crew could come back during off-hours and do the rest of this work in a very efficient manner. Since the polyurethane cures quickly, the slabs would be steady and ready when the warehouse staff returned in the morning. Melvin’s crew has since returned and completed the rest of the work successfully. Sudbeck Construction completed all of this work with the tough, compact, PolyBadger mobile slab lifting unit. Small enough to fit into the back of a pickup truck, the PolyBadger was a very smart choice for the job because it could be wheeled inside the warehouse directly to all of the problem areas.

If you’re a property owner in the Omaha area with sunken or unstable slabs, call Sudbeck Construction at 402-306-9506 today!

Want more information on the PolyBadger mobile lifting system?

Download an Info-Packed PolyBadger System Brochure!

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs

How to Tow a Trailer: 8 Basic Safety Tips

Posted by Erik Prinzing on Jan 26, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - How to Tow a Trailer

Body - How to Tow a TrailerWhether it’s your first time or you’re a seasoned veteran, this guide can serve as a simple checklist to keep your equipment and 16-20 foot trailer safe as you travel to your next project.

Give Yourself Plenty of Room to Stop and Turn

When towing a trailer, the distance required to stop is more than most people realize. The amount of space between you and the vehicle in front of you must be doubled if not more compared to driving without a trailer. The same is true with turns. Allow more space than you think you may need between you and any curbs or other vehicles. And don't jackknife the trailer (a turn so sharp that it touches your bumper) as this can cause damage.

Keep Your Trailer Grounded

Winds, downhill grades, and momentum can all lead to trailer swaying. We recommend utilizing a hitch stabilization device to negate some of these effects. You can also release the gas pedal and manually apply the trailer brakes with a brake controller as needed. Your trailer can start swinging back and forth behind you if you are not monitoring your surroundings and speed.

Look Twice While Changing Lanes

Your blind spots significantly increase with a trailer and it’s much harder to make quick lane changes. Give yourself plenty of space and move slowly from one lane to the other after double-checking your blind spots and the positions of surrounding vehicles.

Patience is Key with Passing

You also have to allow more distance and time when passing other vehicles. Give yourself plenty of room to get your vehicle safely up to speed with the trailer in tow. Be patient and remain calm at all times, even when other drivers may impatiently speed up and pass you.

Avoid Blocking Yourself In

Just because you can get in doesn’t mean you can get out. It’s a lot easier to get stuck or blocked in with a trailer than most people realize. Make sure there's plenty of space to make a complete turnaround or choose a spot where you can exit straightaway.

Practice Backing Up with the Trailer

Backing up with a trailer can be counter-intuitive for newbies. New trailer drivers should take some time in a parking lot or other spacious area to practice slowly driving in reverse. You’ll find that you have to turn the steering wheel left in order to move the trailer towards the right and vice versa. For most people it doesn’t feel right at first, so it’s definitely worth practicing in a safe environment.

Perform Regular Maintenance and Carry a Spare Tire

If you have electric brakes on the trailer, be sure to calibrate them so they are receiving the correct amount power. Follow the calibration procedures in your brake controller manual. Check the lug nuts with a lug wrench periodically to make sure they aren't coming loose. Grease the bearings on the axels every 10,000 miles or once a year, whichever comes first. Carry a spare tire, a lug wrench, and a jack that is strong enough to lift your trailer. It's tough to change a tire without the proper equipment.

Stay Alert

The #1 reason people get into accidents is because they are not paying attention, driving faster than they should, or simply lacking foresight. Look further down the road than you normally would because it takes longer to speed up, brake, change lanes, and turn with a trailer. This way you can spot and anticipate problems from a mile away.

Want more information on geotech products and equipment?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: Repair Seawalls, Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs, Deep Lift

Crack Injection with Polyurethane Grout (Demo Video)

Posted by Charlie Lerman on Jan 21, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Crack Injection with Polyurethane Grout

Body - Crack Injection with Polyurethane Grout

Concrete starts decaying immediately after it cures. Even brand new construction can require leak seal follow up work. Older concrete structures are even more susceptible. 

Leaking concrete structures can be permanently repaired with concrete crack injection procedures using water-activated polyurethane grout. Pressure injection forces the material into leaking cracks. After the injection is complete, the polyurethane grout rapidly reacts with water to form a watertight seal.

The demo video below covers the 5 steps of concrete crack injection:

  • Drilling Holes
  • Flushing the Holes
  • Installing the Ports
  • Flushing the Cracks
  • Injecting the Resin

Watch the demo video now...

Want more information on sealing leaks with polyurethane grout?

Download an Info-Packed Leak Seal Brochure!

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Seal Leaks

The Grout Geek Interviews Industry Legend Captain Grout!

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Jan 19, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Banner - The Grout Geek Interviews Industry Legend Captain Grout

Body - The Grout Geek Interviews Industry Legend Captain GroutEpisode 11 of The Injection Connection features a landmark conversation between retired industry legend Captain Grout (aka Paul Layman) and his number one protégé and unofficial successor, The Grout Geek (podcast host Charlie Lerman). Don't miss this info-packed discussion between these two chemical grouting heavyweights!

Listen to the episode in its entirety below, or check it out on TheInjectionConnection.com and the following platforms:

Want info on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Seal Leaks, Stabilize Soil, Business Tips