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com | JUNe 2011

For Environmental &
Support Service Professionals
Equipment Roundup:
Portable storage solutions
page 20

Tech Perspectives:
Explore factors for choosing the right pillow tank
page 28

BranD of
WRS MaintainS a bROad WORk Menu
fOR RefineRieS PAGE 12
100' 100 FT
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2 GOMC • www.varcopumper.comwww.gomcmag.com
6GC11- JUN.11
JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 3
20 28


The reality show can provide a wake-up call for company leaders.
Would you like to be in their shoes?
- Jim Kneiszel


Rather than making them run up and down your company’s chain of
command, give workers the authority to take decisive action when it
features comes to improving customer service.
- June Fabre


12 COVER STORY: DIFFERENT BRAND OF DIVERSITY Follow these tips to make sure your income stays ahead of your
Instead of reaching into many industries, WRS strives for a full expenses going out.
spectrum of offerings across one business sector. - Ty Freyvogel
- Ken Wysocky


20 EQUIPMENT ROUNDUP: STOW IT SAFELY To serve customers with efficiency, speed and safety, Husky Hydrovac
Portable storage solutions provide service convenience and time- turns to X-10 hydroexcavating trucks from Hi-Vac Corp.
and cost-savings for your waste-handling routine. - Ken Wysocky
- Ed Wodalski

Collapsible fabric storage tanks can provide cost-effective liquid INSTALLATIONS
storage solutions for GOM contractors. - Ken Wysocky
- Peter Kenter


on the cover COMING NEXT MONTH: JULY 2011

Issue Focus: Annual Buyer’s Guide
Chief executive officer Bill Van Zanten,
chief financial officer and founder Jerry ■ Contractor Profile: Minnesota company hauls waste,
Libolt, and chief operating officer Ryan transports fluids for GOM customers
Likkel of WRS continually adapt to and ■ Safety First: Don’t neglect personal protective equipment
meet the needs of numerous refineries.
■ Building the Business: Failure often leads to success for
business owners

4 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

HXL400WV At Armstrong Equipment, we believe life
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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 5

Advertiser Index
JUNE 2011
Adler Industrial Service -
DBA Solid Oak..................................................23
For Environmental &
Armstrong Equipment, Inc. ................5, 27 Support Service Professionals

Published monthly by:

Badger Vacuum Trucks.................................23
Butterworth, Inc. ...................................................6
Dragon Products Ltd. .......................................7
1720 Maple Lake Dam Rd., PO Box 220
EMI Sales, LLC........................................................27 Three Lakes, WI 54562
Enid Mack Sales Inc. ........................................25
Fruitland Tool & Mfg........................................23 © Copyright 2011 COLE Publishing Inc.
No part may be reproduced without
permission of the publisher.
Granite Seed and Erosion Control......32
In U.S. or Canada call
toll-free 800-257-7222
Guzzler Manufacturing, Inc.........................3 Elsewhere call 715-546-3346
Email: info@gomcmag.com
Web: www.gomcmag.com
Hi-Vac Corporation..........................................11 Fax: 715-546-3786
J&J Truck Bodies & Trailers.............................9
Office hours Mon- Fri.,
7:30 a.m.-5 p.m. CST
Kentucky Tank, Inc............................................29
M Tech Company .............................................37 one year (12 issue) subscription to
GOMC in the United States or Cana-
da is free to qualified subscribers. A
Moro USA, Inc. .....................................................40 qualified subscriber is any company or
individual who maintains, services or
supports land-based gas, oil or min-
National Vacuum Equipment, Inc. .....29 ing operations in North America.
Pressure Lift Corporation............................33 Non-qualified subscriptions are avail-
able at a cost of $60 per year in the
United States and $120 per year out-
R.A. Ross & Associates NE, Inc. ................33 side of the United States. To qualify
visit www.gomcmag.com/qualify or
Super Products, LLC........................................19 call 800-257-7222.
Three Lakes Truck & Equipment ..........27
Our subscriber list is occasionally made
available to carefully selected compa-
TOICO Industries................................................31 nies whose products or services may
be of interest to you. Your privacy is
important to us. If you prefer not to
Transcube/ be a part of these lists, please contact
Western International, Inc......................13 Nicole at nicolel@colepublishing.com.


V.E. Enterprises, Inc. ..........................................17 sales staff below, Kim at 800-994-7990
or Noel at 888-844-3506. Publisher
reserves the right to reject advertising
which in its opinion is misleading, un-
Vac-Con, Inc...........................................................39 fair or incompatible with the character
Vacuum Sales, Inc. ............................................31 of the publication.

VAR Co. ..........................................................................2

Water Cannon, Inc. ..........................................15 Kim McGee Noel Lewis

WJTA - IMCA .............................................................9 REPRINTS AND BACK ISSUES: Visit

www.gomcmag.com for options and
pricing. To order reprints, call Jeff Lane
at 800-257-7222 (715-546-3346) or
email jeffl@colepublishing.com. To
SUBSCRIBE FOR order back issues, call Nicole at 800-

257-7222 (715-546-3346) or email

CIRCULATION: Standard monthly

GOMCMAG.COM circulation is in excess of 10,000 copies.

6 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 7
Editor’s Notebook

Would You like To Be MAKING CHANGES

an undercover Boss? But I have an exercise that might give

you a few of the benefits of Undercover Boss
without ever leaving the office. Ask yourself
The reality show can provide a wake-up call for company leaders. the following questions. The answers might
tell you something about your management
Would you like to be in their shoes?
style, give you a better handle on workplace
By Jim Kneiszel, Editor efficiency, and point to ways you can ad-
dress a lingering human resource concern.

Would you be willing to do every job at

ave you ever watched the CBS Tele- slew of process and human resources chal- your company?
vision reality show, Undercover Boss? lenges – and even shed a tear with his work- You probably did perform the dirtiest
In case you’ve missed it, the prem- ers – in a mere 43 minutes (not including work when you were starting out. Are you
ise involves the chief executive of a company the commercials). still willing to get knee-deep in a mess and
adopting a new identity in order to work a Among other things, he issued comput- show your workers how to do the job right?
variety of frontline jobs with a goal of getting ing tools to allow one worker with a heavy Sometimes it’s a good thing to remind the
Jim Kneiszel in touch with employees and streamlining travel schedule to video chat with his family. crews in the field that you know what their
operations. After working with another employee strug- jobs entail. If they know you understand ev-
A recent episode piqued my interest, so gling to quit smoking, he added a smoking ery process, they may be more apt to respect
I put down the remote control and watched cessation program to the company’s health your most challenging marching orders.
as Bill Massa, the head of waste process- insurance benefits. He addressed another Also, they may feel freer to come to you
ing company Synagro Technologies Inc., worker’s concerns by promising that proper with suggestions of better ways to complete
dove into some of the dirtiest jobs around. portable sanitation would be available at a task. This will improve your company’s
He worked with dewatering plant opera- every remote work location from now on. bottom line.
tors to test sludge cake and clean filtering Massa’s experience got me to thinking
systems. He removed biosolids from a Will you hear good things about your
about what it would be like for the owner
lagoon in Kansas. He waded waist-deep into management style?
of a GOM support services company – who
a treatment plant holding tank to pump out maybe hasn’t worked at a remote loca- What are employees saying about you
sludge. when they head out the door for a mining or
tion lately – to become an Undercover Boss.
rig location? The prospect of hearing those
Would you welcome or dread the oppor-
SEEING IS BELIEVING conversations would be like cracking open
tunity to be a fly on the wall around your
The thrill of watching a top executive your teenage daughter’s diary. It could scare
workers? How would you react to seeing a
get a little dirt under his fingernails is good the heck out of you, but might give you
worker cut corners on a job or provide less-
TV. But more important than the theatrics, valuable clues about parenting.
than-stellar customer service? Would you be
Have you ever
thought about asking
(Employees) probably spend more time together on the job than they do with their families at home. workers to assess your
Reward them with a little fun so they associate being together with skills as a manager?
You can do this in a
more than backbreaking work. non-threatening and
constructive way and
gain some of the same
Massa had the opportunity to find out ready to step in and make dramatic changes insights as the CEOs on Undercover Boss. Be-
about the daily challenges of his workforce. in your company based on an eye-opening ing willing to listen to employees can help
He got a glimpse of how efficiently the com- experience like this? you gain and retain their respect, while
pany’s systems work. He heard firsthand It’s unlikely CBS will be calling you learning ways you can improve as a leader.
what several employees liked and disliked anytime soon to star on an episode of
about working at Synagro. Undercover Boss. And those of you with Will workers complain about your ben-
As is the formula with primetime tele- smaller companies couldn’t put on a hat and efits package?
vision entertainment, Massa learned many fake moustache and get away with working You probably already have a good idea
things about his company and overcame a incognito alongside employees. how employees feel about the perks of the

8 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

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J&J Gas Oil & Mining Half AD.indd 1 4/21/2011 10:48:24 AM

job. If you don’t offer benefits like health in- week to plan a lunch or infor-
surance or vacation days, you know workers mal party to build camarade-
may not be happy about it. The question is, rie among employees. They
can you do something to turn what might be work hard with each other –
a negative into a positive? day after day – and probably
Even incremental, measured improve- spend more time together
ments in the benefit package can have a big on the job than they do with
impact with workers. You might not be able their families at home. Re-
to afford a premium, all-expenses-paid health ward them with a little fun so
insurance plan. But can you contribute to a they associate being together
health savings account for workers or offer a with more than backbreaking
high-deductible plan as a start? If money is work.
difficult to overcome, can you offer flexible
work hours, modest bonuses for a job well A FINAL THOUGHT
done, or other motivators that don’t come Being an Undercover Boss
with a big price tag? Remember the old say- is designed to push you out of
ing, “little things mean a lot.” your comfort zone as a man-
ager. Would you be able to
Will employees backstab each other? react after the experience and
It’s not all about you. How would you make changes that will build
handle it if you heard employees criticizing a stronger company and more
each other behind their backs? While you satisfied workforce? GOMC
can take action to improve your relationships
with workers, employees who can’t get along
with each other can be just as big an issue.
How can you improve employee morale?
Think about planning a team-building
activity. It might be on the weekend, or even
better, taking an afternoon during the work-

JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 9

Building the Business

They have learned to wait for specific direc-

What’s Your
tions from their managers rather than func-
tioning as autonomous professionals. This
ingrained habit is difficult to break. The best

$100 Banana? way to change this habit is to give your staff

consistent support. Don’t let your chain of
command become a ball and chain. When
Rather than making them run up and down your company’s chain of you empower frontline employees, you save
money, clients are more satisfied and pro-
command, give workers the authority to take decisive action when it
ductivity increases.
comes to improving customer service
By June Fabre 2. Building trust enables you to use your
intellectual capital. When workers trust
each other, they act quickly and decisively,
saving your company time and money. How

ike the health care industry, sales, nurse calls the dietary manager, who replies, do you build trust? By respecting yourself
marketing, engineering, IT, customer “not without a doctor’s order.” After talking and others, by being a role model, by cour-
service and other departments in any to two nearby managers, the nurse mentions teous communication, and by sensitivity to
business face big customer satisfaction chal- it to a senior vice president who was passing the needs of others.
lenges. I’m sure there are examples in your through the unit. The upper level executive For example, a frontline employee
industrial support services business where intervenes and the patient, unhappy about working on a joint venture with a client
June Fabre employees from different departments can the long wait, finally receives the banana. needs to transfer complex documents. She
undermine each other, resulting in less- The time taken by each person to solve thinks using a particular website would
than-stellar customer service. his problem makes the cost of the banana make the transfer easier and asks her man-
If severe enough, these conflicts could exceed $100. This wasted money, due to ager if their company prefers any one site.
derail a lucrative service contract and cost miscommunication and failure to integrate The manager suggests that she discuss it
your company a lot of money in lost employ- department systems, is an example of why with the IT manager, who agrees with her
ee time. Your employees need quick and ac- medical costs have escalated. idea and helps her set up the transfer. Since
curate action instead of obstacles and delays Frontline employees with decision- the frontline worker had the autonomy to

A hospital patient asks for a banana. The nurse calls the dietary manager, who replies, “not without a
doctor’s order” … The time taken by each person to solve his problem makes the cost of the
banana exceed $100. This wasted money, due to miscommunication and failure
to integrate department systems, is an example of why medical costs have escalated.

to avoid these situations. making authority save management contact the IT manager directly, she saved
Here’s an unfortunate example time and increase customer satisfaction. time in repeated tasks.
from the health care industry: A Organizations providing work environments When companies take advantage of
hospital patient asks for a where staff can perform at their best frontline workers’ good ideas, they save
banana. The attract and retain the best people. Positive many $100 bananas.
employee relationships generate energy and
raise productivity. 3. Build a positive work environment.
Companies that establish a working
Save money, improve client satisfac- environment where employees can perform
tion, and reduce expensive errors with the at their best attract and retain the best
following seven tips: people. Long-term strategies, such as
effective communication and staff-friendly
1. Empower your frontline staff to solve cultures, enable companies to achieve the
client problems on the spot. When front- best results. Building a positive culture
line employees hesitate to make the inde- requires respect, consistency and integrity.
pendent decisions, it’s because they have A positive culture enables workers to make
been reprimanded for doing so in the past. smart decisions for customers.

10 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

4. Insist that staff collaborate instead of Smart managers empower staff to leverage ABOUT THE AUTHOR
compete. Ask yourself the question, “Is scarce resources and to do more with less. June Fabre is author of Smart Nursing: Nurse Reten-
tion and Patient Safety Improvement Strategies, and
everyone aligned behind our sales strategy?” More than simply helping to maximize cli- owner of Smart Healthcare LLC. She is a speaker, trainer
Good communication and collaboration ent satisfaction, these tips help managers and consultant. Reach her through her website, www.
save time and money, and increase raise productivity, saving your company junefabre.com or call 603/320-3469.
productivity. For instance, a salesperson may from so many of those $100 bananas. GOMC
have landed a good service contract, but
the crew showing up with equipment must
also interact effectively with the customer.
No matter how good the salesperson is,
future sales will be lost if others involved
in your company aren’t onboard with your
customer service priorities.

5. Brainstorm about the opportunities

that lie beyond the challenges. Dedicate
a portion of your staff meetings to list cur-
rent challenges. Then talk about ways to
transform these challenges into opportuni-
ties. Perhaps you can redefine your selling
proposition to increase sales. For instance,
look at both sides of client complaints. Ask
yourself if the complaint reflects a client’s
need for a new product or service that your
company could offer.

6. Communicate respectfully. Poor com-

munication wastes time, delays decisions,
and damages morale. As the $100 banana
illustrates, poor communication is also
expensive. Even proven communication
strategies are rendered ineffective when staff
manage to find new ways to sabotage one
another with negativity.

7. Solve the root causes of problems. If

frontline employees have no power to solve
the root causes of their problems, they end
up creating temporary fixes day after day.
This wastes huge amounts of time, costing
your company significant amounts of mon-
ey and reducing quality service for clients.
Solving the root causes of problems may
help you take the business in new, profit-
able directions.


Core values, such as respectful com-
munication and integrity, cost nothing.

Comments or Suggestions ...

Building the Business offers ideas and information to
help you operate your company more efficiently and
profitably. If you have a question, comment or a topic
you’d like to see addressed, send an e-mail to editor@

JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 11

Cover Story


Instead of reaching into many industries, WRS strives for
a full spectrum of offerings across one business sector
By Ken Wysocky

Prevailing wisdom holds that a diversified

customer base helps businesses prosper. WRS
in Ferndale, Wash., puts a new spin on that
axiom by providing a variety of services mainly
for one industry: oil refineries.

Under the guidance of Jerry Libolt, founder

and chief financial officer, WRS constantly adapts
its services and equipment to meet the needs of
four major refineries in far northwest Washing-
ton. To do that, the company emphasizes work-
place safety and embraces risk without hesitation
as new opportunities arise.
“The most important thing is to create a
presence,” Libolt says. “Then you can see cus-
tomers’ needs and jump on opportunities. You
can tell them, ‘Hey, I can help you with that.’
Sometimes I’m asked why we get into some
things that aren’t profitable and are dirty, hard
jobs. But we do it to create a presence. There are
a lot of things we’ve done that I didn’t like doing,


OWNERS: Ryan Likkel and Bill Van Zanten
SPECIALTY: Industrial cleaning for
the oil refinery industry
SERVICE AREA: Western Washington
WEBSITE: www.westernrefinery.com

At the St. Joseph Hospital in Bellingham, Wash., Jim

Maassen, on truck, and crew members use the Guzzler
Ace vacuum truck to vacuum out a tank that had
recently been sandblasted. (Photos by Michael Pearce)

12 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

For far too long, handling fuel has been
a messy, hazardous hassle. But that’s all
changing — thanks to Transcube.
DOT and UL 142 approved, Transcube tanks are legally
transportable on the road while full of diesel. Internal baffles
prevent fuel surges, and a double-walled 110% secondary
containment design ensures every drop of fuel stays inside the
tank…where it belongs.

From 132 to 5,000 gallon sizes, Transcube is an environmentally

friendly solution for refueling machines and providing a direct
fuel supply to generators, pumps, heaters or other equipment.

So whether you’re moving diesel by truck,

trailer, forklift or crane, your fuel is always
ready to go…with Transcube.

For a full line information pack, call 866-814-2470,

email info@transcube.us.com or visit www.transcube.net/us.
JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC Think inside the box.™ 13
This shell side cleaner from NLB Corp. operates
with 8,000 to 20,000 psi and has a spin-jet
rotation of 120 rpm. The machine vastly
reduces man-hours needed to clean
heat exchangers.

“ If a business trusts you, they’ll give you opportunities they otherwise might not give.
You have to work for other companies as if you’re working for your own. You can’t slack off.
Don’t be there just to make money. Be there to help your customers.”
Jerry Libolt

but I knew we had to do it to have a presence that would

WRS crew member Arnie Beck does lead to a lot of other opportunities.”
demolition at a refinery for ground
preparation using the Link-Belt Establishing a firm presence at the refineries also
LS-4200 crawler. (Photo courtesy makes it easier to deal with ever-changing and increasing
of WRS) regulations. By always being in on the “ground floor” when
new mandates occur, the company is used to incorporating
them. “It’s much better than being on the outside and always
trying to meet new criteria, which can be overwhelming,”
Libolt says.


About 60 percent of WRS’s business comes from the
refineries, and the rest from industrial cleaning for pipeline
companies, utilities and municipalities. Libolt would prefer
to be less dependent on one business sector.
“We’ve tried to diversify over the last 20 years because
I was concerned about having all our eggs in one basket,”
Libolt says. “But our growth has been so fast, and again, it’s
because we’re there. The refineries are comfortable with us.
So instead, we’ve diversified within the refinery industry.”
14 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11
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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com
www.WaterCannon.com GOMC 15
Ryan Likkel and Bill Van Zanten
check out a new NLB Corp. high-
pressure waterjetting system
with a 400-hp waterblaster that “Even though we’ve worked at one refinery for 27 years, we
pumps at rates between 8,000
and 24,000 psi. The machine still tell our people every day that today is a new day – to
is used for cleaning and water
cutting. work like it’s your first day here. Stay focused on safety,
quality and putting in eight solid hours of work a day.”
Jerry Libolt

Priority One Diversifying often means trying new things. An example is a foray into
what Libolt calls civil work for refineries and other customers – anything that
One thing that could easily ruin WRS’ long-standing relationship has to do with moving earth. As the refineries expand, they’ve asked WRS to
with its primary customers – oil refineries – is a poor safety record. do everything from site preparation to sewer installations.
One accident and the resulting job site downtime can cost those “Sometimes we say yes to a request for a new service, then wonder how
customers hundreds of thousands of dollars a day.
we’re going to do it,” Libolt chuckles. “But we love it. We thrive on it.” The
As such, the company provides comprehensive employee
training that has led to an accident rate almost 50 percent lower than refineries don’t mind that the company also works for competitors, as long as
the industry average, says Jerry Libolt, founder and chief financial it provides top service.
officer. “When the bell tolls, you’ve got to be there, 24/7,” Libolt says, “We’re
WRS employs a full-time, three-member safety staff focusing on always juggling employees. Either there are too many, or not enough. It’s a
compliance safety for everything from handling hazardous waste to constant struggle. And you can’t complain about short notice jobs. They want
operating equipment. They also meet with job site supervisors almost us to pull a rabbit out of a hat and make it happen.”
every day. Closer to the work, job site supervisors are required to hold
daily morning “toolbox meetings” to discuss safety issues related to BARRIERS TO COMPETITORS
the task at hand.
As WRS becomes more integral to refineries’ operations, Libolt has felt
“We work in a potentially dangerous industry, and we want our
employees to go home healthy every night,” Libolt says. “Our number more comfortable specializing in that sector. His comfort increases as new
one priority is employee safety. It’s something I fret about every night. barriers to entry in that market emerge.
It’s also an economic thing. If you want to create long-term work for “It’s getting tougher and tougher to work in a refinery,” Libolt says.
employees, you have to maintain a good safety record.” For example, Homeland Security regulations require employee background
Employee safety training also tells employees the company cares checks and Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) cards for
about them, and that fosters loyalty and helps minimize turnover. To all workers who require non-escorted access to ports and other security-sensi-
attract and retain quality people, WRS also offers competitive salaries, tive areas. Embedded with an integrated circuit chip, the cards cost $132.50
full medical, dental and vision insurance, disability insurance, and a each and are valid for five years.
401(k) retirement plan.
“So if the refineries get a company in that has all that, and does a good
“When you get quality employees, you have to take care of them,”
Libolt says. “Our company is only as good as the people who represent
job, they’re more willing to ask you to do things you don’t have a lot of ex-
us, so creating a good environment for them to work in is critical.” perience with, just to avoid all the hurdles of bringing in a new company,”
Libolt says. (continued)
16 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11
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For some companies, long relationships
with customers could breed complacency.
But Libolt is vigilant about that. “One of our
biggest challenges is to stay focused – not
accept past success as something that will
just continue to happen,” he notes. “We’re
not assured of anything. You’ve got to keep a
razor-sharp edge. You can’t get lazy and stop
paying attention to details. If you do, before
you know it, you’ve got a problem.
“Even though we’ve worked at one re-
finery for 27 years, we still tell our people
every day that today is a new day – to work
like it’s your first day here. Stay focused on
safety, quality and putting in eight solid hours
of work a day.”
This Presvac vacuum truck, with
FARM-TO-REFINERY 5,500-gallon/130-barrel tank with a
As unlikely as it seems, Libolt entered the 21-ton payload, is one of 10 Presvac
refinery field by way of dairy farming. For his rigs in WRS’ fleet.
first 15 years out of high school, he was part
owner of a dairy farm. He might have stayed in
that business if he hadn’t noticed that a new regulation was forcing area farmers “The most important thing is to create a presence. Then you
to build lagoons to store manure during winter.
Before, farmers would spread manure on fields all year, but that contrib- can see customers’ needs and jump on opportunities.
uted to water pollution from runoff in spring. The lagoon meant farmers had to You can tell them, ‘Hey, I can help you with that.’”
pump liquid manure onto fields, instead of using manure spreaders.
“I saw an opportunity because many farmers didn’t have the equipment Jerry Libolt
to pump it onto the fields, and no one else was doing it,” Libolt recalls. “The
lagoons were so new that no one knew what kind of equipment was even
needed. I started out with a pump that ran off a tractor’s power takeoff, an irri- dustrial cleaning and hydroexcavating.
gation pipeline, and a sprinkler. It was hard, inglorious work. There were many Most of the time, WRS buys new vehicles because it can’t afford break-
times I wondered what I was doing.” downs in the middle of critical jobs. Even if the company wanted to buy used
One day, Libolt got a call from an oil refinery that operated a farm where equipment, Libolt says, it’s difficult to find certified vacuum trucks on the used
oil waste was tilled into the ground. The refinery was having trouble making market. That makes new vehicles virtually the only option.
the program work, so a representative contacted the local soil conservation “Our industry is highly regulated, especially when it comes to transporting
service, which recommended Libolt. waste on public highways,” he says. “So all our trucks must be built in a certi-
“Sometimes you’re just in the right place at the right time,” Libolt says. fied shop by certified employees.”
“Eventually, one thing led to another, and pretty soon I was doing more and
more maintenance work – anything that had to do with cleaning. NEVER SLACK OFF
“As they gained confidence in me, they asked me to do other things. I’m To market the company and remain aware of new services the refineries
not the kind of person to shy away from challenges, so I took them on. Then may require, WRS relies on a staff of former oil industry executives who main-
I started visiting other refineries, because they all used the same processes. tain good industry contacts. They serve as new business eyes and ears, staying
Before I knew it, I was working with several of them, but it didn’t happen over- abreast of new regulations and other changes on the horizon.
night. It took one or two years.” “What you did yesterday may not be what you’re doing tomorrow,” Libolt
says. “So you have to stay ahead of the curve.” Libolt says the future looks
BUYING NEW VEHICLES bright, as long as the company stays focused on customer service.
At first, it wasn’t easy for Libolt to get his foot in the door at refineries, “The number one thing for me is in-
but he persevered, sustained by a belief that he could provide a truly valuable tegrity – to be trustworthy,” he says. “So more info
service. “If I hit a road block, I’d go and try a different person,” he says. “You much of what we do depends on the re- Guzzler Manufacturing, Inc.
don’t have to apologize for being persistent.” lationships we’ve built over the years. It’s 800/672-3171
His scope of services eventually increased until he had to buy vacu- all about that trust factor. (See ad page 3)
um trucks to clean tanks “If a business trusts you, they’ll give
and other refinery equip- you opportunities they otherwise might NLB Corp.
Tell us your story ... ment. Today, WRS’ fleet not give. You have to work for other 800/441-5059
Would you like to share your company’s success story
includes 10 wet-vacuum companies as if you’re working for your
with readers of GOMC? In every issue, we feature a trucks from Presvac Systems own. You can’t slack off. Don’t be there
different contractor who serves the energy exploration Presvac Systems, Ltd.
or mineral extraction industries. Tell us about your
Ltd., used mostly for refinery just to make money. Be there to help your 800/387-7763
business or nominate another company for a profile by work, and two vacuum trucks customers.” GOMC www.presvac.com
sending an email to editor@gomcmag.com. from Guzzler Mfg. Inc. for in-

18 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 19


STOW Portable storage solutions provide service convenience

and time- and cost-savings for your waste-handling
routine By Ed Wodalski

Transporting hundreds of barrels of frac water, contaminated soil or other environmentally harmful
materials can be time-consuming and costly when your destination is hundreds of miles from the nearest
disposal site. Leak-proof steel frac and rubberized bladder holding tanks enable you to store oil, mud and other
contaminants on site until they can be safely and efficiently transported. A variety of standard and customizable
storage devices in easy-to-clean designs are available to meet your most demanding waste-handling needs.


1 3 5


The ATL FueLocker bladder tank from Aero Tec Laboratories Inc. is de- Roll-off style vacuum tanks from Bucks Fabricating, available in 20- and
signed for temporary or long-term storage of fuels and oil. Applications include 25-yard sizes, are made to safely transport and store hazardous and nonhazard-
emergency response cleanup or as an auxiliary fuel source for power generators, ous (wet or dry) materials such as oils, sludge, chemicals, liquid waste, slurry,
diesel or gasoline engines and heavy equipment. The tank holds 100 gallons (up fly ash, mud, drill turnings and other materials. Featuring 1/4-inch walls, tanks
to 500-gallon and custom sizes available) of gasoline, E-10 bio-ethanol, diesel have fully welded seams for maximum strength and fully gasketed doors tested
fuel, biodiesel, jet fuel, kerosene, aviation gas, No. 2 and No.4 fuel oil and lubri- against leakage. Apertures and manways can be added. 800/233-0867; www.
cants. Measuring 43 by 43 by 14 inches, the bladder tank is made of military- bucksfab.com.
spec rubberized fabric. Safety features include a vent valve in the fill cap that
automatically relieves pressure in case of excessive heat or overfill. A flapper valve 4. CUSTOM MANUFACTURING INC.
at the fill pipe base prevents possible backflow when the cap is removed. When Sludge containers from Custom Manufacturing Inc. are designed for
not in use, the bladder can be rolled or folded for storage. 800/526-5330; www. collecting, storing and transporting a variety of waste, including oil- and water-
atlinc.com. based mud and cuttings, contaminated soils and sludges. When pits aren’t
possible, containers can be used with shaker or centrifuge setups. Containers are
2. BAKERCORP completely enclosed to prevent spillage. Features include continuously welded
Frac tanks from BakerCorp are made of 1/4-inch ASTM A36 carbon steel and seams, fully gasketed rear door and lids, knife-edge seal, adjustable hinges and
hold up to 21,000 gallons. Tanks can be manifolded for larger projects. Designed for ratchet binders. Fully water tested, containers have 3/16-inch walls, bulkheads,
well fracturing and oil field applications, the tanks feature a fixed-axle for staging in rear doors and floors. Bins also can be made with dewatering floor and side-
tight locations. The V-bottom floor, smooth walls and front and rear valves provide hinge rear door. 888/692-6311; www.custommanufacturing.us.
easy cleanout. Other features include 22-inch manways on the top, front and side.
Tanks are available unlined or with a chemical-resistant coating. Each tank is tested 5. DEL TANK & FILTRATION SYSTEMS
to meet NESHAP and OSHA standards. 800/635-7349; www.bakercorp.com. Mix tanks from DEL Tank & Filtration Systems are available in 1,000- to

20 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

33,000-gallon sizes. The 400-barrel, bullet-style tank is designed for uniform sol- ball valves to 6061-T6 aluminum. Each bladder tank has welded seams and is
id suspension and mixing that eliminates buildup. Features include four 10-hp tested for quality. 800/260-9950; www.huskyportable.com.
mixers, round bottom and smooth walls. 800/468-2657; www.deltank.com.
10. L.M.T. INC.
6. DRAGON PRODUCTS LTD. Roll-off vacuum systems from L.M.T. Inc. range from 300-gallon units for
Model 500-barrel, cross-catwalk corrugated wall liquid storage tanks small trucks or trailers to 110-barrel tanks for truck or trailer mounting. The
from Dragon Products Ltd. feature minimum 15-mil DFT chemical-resistant 2,500-gallon steel vacuum tank has a full-open rear door, 25-hp electric-start
liners. Tanks have a connecting catwalk system with front access ladder for Kohler engine and Jurop R-260 pump. The self-contained system is mounted
easy inspection that allows for multiple connections. Tanks are made from on a SwampLoader Model SL-400 hydraulic hooklift frame. Tanks have hot-dip
1/4-inch corrugated steel, steel shot-blasted and covered inside and out galvanizing to protect wetted components and for longer life. 800/545-0174;
with a painted durable lining and undercoated floor. 800/231-8198; www. www.tanksandpumps.com.
7. FLO TREND SYSTEMS INC. The 500-barrel (21,000 gallons) MTI-45M tank from Monster Tanks
Roll-off containers from Flo Trend Systems Inc. are designed to be Inc. has smooth internal steel walls with external reinforcement, V-bottom
watertight and feature gasketed, hinged rear-opening doors. Standard gaskets floor with sump pan and stair and platform system for easy top access. The
are made from a neoprene/SBR blend. Other materials, such as nitrile, are tank has a manway on the front wall and two 4-inch Weco-style connections
available for compatibility with various fluids. Container sizes range from 15 with 8-inch manifold. Other features include trailer lights and electrical
cubic yards (3,000 gallons) to 40 cubic yards (8,000 gallons). Lid options system, 2-inch kingpin, internal chemical-resistant liner. A variety of tank


7 11 13

include peaked roofs with hatches, side-to-side rolling lids, over/under sliding volumes, colors and construction are available. 888/231-8515; www.
lids, and side-to-side rolling tarps. Containers can be made for standard cable monstertanksinc.com.
and hoist roll-off truck pick up, hook-lift or other designs. Standard containers
are sandblasted and feature two-part epoxy primer and urethane coating. Other 12. MPC CONTAINMENT
coatings are available. 713/699-0152; www.flotrend.com. Collapsible storage tanks from MPC Containment are made from
synthetic-coated fabric for chemical and fuel compatibility that can withstand
8. GAPVAX INC. temperature extremes. Tanks feature rounded-corners to redistribute
The SV32 roll-off, skid-mounted vacuum system from GapVax Inc. is shell stress uniformly and can store diesel, jet fuel, aviation gas, fuel oil, brine
made for oil field and refinery use. Constructed of Exten steel, the unit is and frac water, as well as water containing oils and heavy metals that must
blasted, primed and painted with industrial-grade urethane paint. The interior be treated prior to discharge. Tanks are available in 500- to 210,000-gallon
is polymer coated. The unit is designed as an all-inclusive wet/dry system, sizes. Custom diameters and heights are available. Fittings for inlets, outlets,
featuring a moisture trap (scrubber), two cyclones and filter baghouse. The drains and vents are included. 800/621-0146; www.mpccontainment.com.
baghouse has 30 polyester filter bags and 30 heavy-duty galvanized steel hi-vac
cages. Delivering up to 3,800 cfm at 28 inches Hg, the unit has an electric or 13. PINNACLE MANUFACTURING LLC
diesel drive system. 888/442-7829; www.gapvax.com. Frac tanks from Pinnacle Manufacturing LLC are made from 1/4-inch steel
with formed channel exterior braces – no interior rods or corrugated walls.
9. HUSKY PORTABLE CONTAINMENT Standard features include 500-barrel (21,000 gallon) capacity, smooth walls
Flexible frac pillow tanks from Husky Portable Containment can store with epoxy lining, four manways: three 20 inches (front, roof and rear) and
water, brine or oil. Lighter than steel tanks for easier transport, capacities range one 25 inches on the passenger side. Models include the Side Stair, Flat Top,
up to 1,100 barrels (50,000 gallons). Made from XR and urethane materials, Open Top, Gas Busters, mix and double-wall. Options include inside and
tanks can withstand temperatures from -50 degrees to 180 degrees F. A variety outside manifolds, gel lines, heat coils, sign plates, additional manways, valves
of fittings are available, from Banjo polypropylene, brass and stainless steel and fittings. 256/840-8031; www.pinnaclemfg.net.

JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 21

14. ROTH INDUSTRIES colors, the impact- and corrosion-resistant tanks feature seamless construction
Double-wall oil storage tanks from Roth Industries feature leak-sensor and controlled wall thickness. 402/467-5221; www.snydernet.com.
protection, weld-free galvanized steel outer tank capable of holding 110
percent of the inner tank, seamless high-density polyethylene inner tank and 18. TOICO INDUSTRIES
highly visible optical leak alarm. The tanks have a corrosion-resistant steel Bladder tanks from Toico Industries are available in 25- to 50,000-gallon
filling system and external 2-inch thread with no fittings below the oil line. sizes and feature male or female fittings from 3/4 to 6 inches in size. Ball valves,
Made for heating oil, diesel and up to B20 bio fuels, tanks are available in 110-, flanges, flame arrestors, vents, access panels and pressure-relief valves are
165-, 275- (also low height), and 400-gallon sizes. Tanks measure 29 to 64 available. Applications include frac liquid and fuel storage as well as drinking
inches long, 28 to 30 inches wide and 44 to 68 inches tall. Weight ranges from water, wastewater (greywater), black water (sewage) storage and firefighting
115 to 358 pounds. Tanks can be installed alone or in groups of up to five. applications. 888/935-1133; www.toico.com.
888/266-7684; www.roth-america.com.
15. SAVATECH CORP. The 350-gallon, stainless steel portable tank from Tote Systems holds
Sava transportable tanks from Savatech Corp. are self-supporting and the equivalent of seven, 55-gallon drums. Tanks have a 22-inch drum cover
can be placed on a flatbed or open ground. Available in 18 standard sizes with 3-inch fusible vent, 2-inch bung plug, 2-inch reduced port ball valve with
as well as custom configurations, tanks are made from polyester fabric Teflon seats and reverse locking handle. Measuring 42 inches long, 48 inches
reinforced rubber. They are chemical and fuel resistant and can withstand wide and 47 3/4 inches tall, other features of the UN/DOT-certified tanks
temperatures from -22 degrees to 194 degrees F. Strap belt-loops are provided include 6-inch clearance from tank bottom to floor, 1/4-inch radius corner
to prevent slipping and rolling while in motion. Fill and drain ports come combination lifting lug and stacking positioners. A 550-gallon tank is available.
standard with Storz C fitting on the top, end or side. Additional or larger ports 888/535-8683; www.totetank.com.




can be installed. Handle-straps are provided. Ground sheet and straps are 20. WASTEQUIP
available, along with a choice of materials and colors. 888/436-9778; www. The 500-barrel frac tank from Wastequip is designed to hold crude
savatech.eu. oil, chemicals, runoff water, diesel fuel or other materials without leaking.
Featuring 1/4-inch construction, tanks have a round bottom for easy cleanout,
16. SMITH & LOVELESS INC. vertical reinforcements on smooth sidewalls, raised galvanized bar grating,
The MOBILE FAST wastewater treatment system from Smith & Loveless stairways with handrails and 25-inch manway at the rear. Other features
Inc. is designed for gas and oil field camps. Utilizing fixed-film FAST bio-treat include continuous welds, heavy structural channel substructure and heavy-
technology, the system yields pristine effluent without the need for clarifiers duty suspension system. All tanks are hydrotested to ensure against leakage.
or advanced filtration. Microorganisms typically used in biological wastewater Custom designs with a variety of interior coatings are available. 877/468-9278;
grow on the fixed-film media in an oxygen-rich submerged environment. Each www.wastequip.com. GOMC
system is configured for standardized intermodal transportation, fitting railcars,
trucks and container ships. Four over-the-road transport models are available.
Units include a machinery room with lockable steel door for protection against


weather and possible vandalism. The ISO cargo container allows for the
installation of additional units. 913/888-5201; www.smithandloveless.com.


Polyethylene storage tanks from Snyder Industries Inc. are made from
either FDA and ANSI/NSF 61 compliant high-density linear polyethylene or
cross-link polyethylene resin with UV stabilizer. Large tanks have molded lifting SUBSCRIBE ONLINE AT GOMCMAG.COM
lugs and fitting flats at the top. Available in natural (translucent), black or other

22 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 23
On the Money

appoint some method to help you keep

Mastering Cash Flow

your bills and their due dates separate. Your
system can be as simple as keeping a note-
book documenting when to write checks
and when to deposit them. Or you can uti-
Follow these tips to make sure your income stays ahead of your lize a computerized system like QuickBooks
expenses going out to help you keep track of everything. Being
well organized will ensure that your supplies
are always in stock, your power never goes
By Ty Freyvogel
out and your employees get paid.

Be firm but kind with clients.

our success as a business owner entrepreneurship is based on taking risks, It is important to run your business in a
comes down to whether or not you but where cash flow is concerned, err on the manner that tolerates a certain amount of le-
can pay your bills and still turn a side of conservatism. Remember that cash niency with clients, but don’t let them walk
profit. Seems obvious, right? But achieving is king. No matter how much we dislike it, all over you either! If you establish yourself
a healthy balance between monetary intake cash flow determines what we are able to do as a complete pushover, even clients with
and output is an art that confounds many with our business. the best intentions will take advantage of
Ty Freyvogel
entrepreneurs. I am not exaggerating when I you. It is also important not to run your
say that your ability to manage cash flow will Don’t underestimate the value of a good company with an iron fist. You want to
either make you or break you. customer. find a happy medium that will keep you in
I have seen otherwise-successful You have the choice to run your business business and keep your clients happy. That
business owners crumble under the stress as you see fit. But no matter how successful being said, don’t be afraid to politely call a
of poorly managed cash flow. Likewise, I and powerful you become, remember that customer who hasn’t paid a bill and remind
have watched colleagues flourish under a your customers are the reason you exist. him or her that it is overdue. They under-
well-structured, well-maintained accounting So be good to them. Some of my oldest stand that you have provided a service and
system. Fortunately, it’s quite possible customers are still my best customers. it requires a payment. You can preserve your
to stay on top of the money coming into One company can spend millions on your client relationship and get your money by
and going out of your company. Read on services over the years. If you’re a consumer treating the client with integrity.

Break even.
Don’t worry if managing your cash flow seems very difficult and even overwhelming at first … You have to
After a few months, you will embrace your monthly monetary obligations and may at least break even
each month in
even find a sense of comfort in the ebb and flow of money. order to survive. If
you are facing hard
for some insights that have led to my own company, even one person can be worth times, your biggest goal will be to just break
businesses’ successful cash flow: thousands of dollars over the span of your even—and then get back on track. For obvi-
business relationship. For this reason, you ous reasons, you want your incoming cash
Assume that your estimates are wrong— must not let success change your mission to be significantly higher than your outgo-
and save for a rainy day. to give every client and customer the royal ing. So engrave your break-even number in
No matter how carefully you plan for treatment. They are, after all, responsible for your mind or sticky-note it to the front of
all potential cash-related scenarios, you the incoming cash you will use to pay rent, your computer, and see that you surpass
will not be able to accurately predict the taxes and other fees. that number each month. Simple. Here’s a
“weather” of your operating environment. quick tip: If you are having problems break-
At any moment, a storm front or even an Keep tabs on your expenses. ing even one month, tell your vendors,
unexpected sunny day could appear out of Don’t rely on your memory alone to don’t keep them in the dark. No one likes
the blue. Don’t get me wrong; it’s a good know when to pay your bills, order new surprises, especially your bank.
idea to make rough estimates for your cash supplies or bill your clients. Even if you run
flow. Just be sure to give yourself a healthy a very small business, you will never be able Be honest with the man.
margin for error and expect the unexpect- to pay everything on time if you don’t have Do not, I repeat, do not try to cheat the
ed. Keep a nice cushion of “extra” money a system in place to help you keep track government. Some very clever people have
in your account for surprise bills. I know of it all. For this reason, it is imperative to filtered out money from their business that

24 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

they were able to keep out of the govern- an unexpected bill. Rather than taking tax ing at first. Cash flow is very complicated
ment’s grasp … for a while. You may get avoidance to extremes, get out there and and can take some getting used to. After a
away with hiding money, under-reporting try to make more money. If you think about few months, you will embrace your monthly
income, fudging your write-offs and other taxes in the right way, you won’t view them monetary obligations and may even find
methods of cheating, but you probably will as such a bad thing. You may as well assume a sense of comfort in the ebb and flow of
not. Uncle Sam has gone to great lengths to paying more taxes means that you are doing money. Like the tides and the seasons, cash
set up systems that keep this from happen- very well. flow has a natural “rhythm” that keeps you
ing easily. grounded and helps you make sense of your
Keep away from credit cards if possible. place in the business world.
Why taxes are good. (Really!) Credit cards are necessary, but that Before you know it, you will use cash
Many businesses try to have a very doesn’t mean that you should run up a flow as a gauge of your ability to take risks—
small profit at the end of the year so they mountain of debt. Businesses shut down and that knowledge will help you make the
don’t have to pay huge amounts in taxes because of factors like credit card debt, so kinds of smart decisions that help your com-
on it. This can negatively affect cash flow if swipe with caution if you have to swipe at pany grow and flourish. Remember, when
you keep your business account so low that all. Don’t max them out, by any means. If your outgoing exceeds your incoming, your
you don’t have enough of a pad there to pay you find that you have to max out a credit upkeep is your downfall. GOMC
card your business may already be in trouble
and it is time to seek alternate funding. ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Comments or Suggestions ... Ty Freyvogel owns the consulting firm, Freyvogel
Communications, and is author of It’s Not Your Smarts,
On the Money addresses financial issues of importance to A FINAL WORD It’s Your Schmooze and Seize the Century! He can
GOMC readers. If you would like to suggest a topic for this Don’t worry if managing your cash be reached through his website, www.EntrepreneursLab.
column, send an email to editor@gomcmag.com.
flow seems difficult and even overwhelm- com.

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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 25

Money Machines

The hole STory

To serve customers with efficiency, speed and safety, Husky Hydrovac
turns to X-10 hydroexcavating trucks from Hi-Vac Corp.
By Ken Wysocky

A t Husky Hydrovac LLC in South

Hutchinson, Kan., two words
sum up why the company owns
six X-10 hydroexcavating trucks, manufac-
tured by Hi-Vac Corp.: quicker, safer.
“These trucks are our workhorses,
and they help us do our work extremely
efficiently,” says Terry Barker, operations
director for the company, which does
90 percent of its work in oil and natural
gas fields throughout the central United
States, including Arkansas, Colorado,
Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Okla-
homa and Texas. “The trucks excavate
quicker and safer, because there’s no
chance of metal meeting metal or tearing
up underground cables and lines.” More of Husky Hydrovac’s safety-conscious GOM clients and their liability insurance companies are demanding the use of hydroexca-
vators to locate and expose underground pipes.


With model years ranging from 2008 to 2010, the nearly identical trucks Husky Hydrovac LLC, South Hutchinson, Kan.
cost about $400,000 each.
They feature 14-yard debris MACHINE: Model X-10 hydroexcavating trucks, manufactured
by Hi-Vac Corp. under the X-Vac brand
tanks; a 360-degree radius, PRIMARy
hydraulic boom; four side- FEATURES: 14-yard debris tank; a 360-degree radius, hydraulic
boom; four side-mounted 250-gallon water tanks for
mounted 250-gallon water 1,000 gallons total capacity; maximum water pressure
tanks for 1,000 gallons total of 3,500 psi at 20 gpm; maximum vacuum pressure of
3,850 cfm at 27 inches Hg
capacity; independent water
COST: About $400,000
pump and vacuum controls;
and remote-control operation
of both the boom and water During excavation, crews generally keep the pressure around 2,000 psi at
pump. They generate maxi- 7 gpm, Barker says. “The trucks can also do dry vacuuming, like sucking up
mum water pressure of 3,500 gravel or sand, but we don’t use them for that very often,” he says.
psi at 20 gpm and maximum Increased productivity is another key benefit. Barker notes that the trucks
vacuum pressure of 3,850 cfm can remove 2 1/2 to 3 cubic yards of dirt an hour. He says it used to take about
at 27 inches Hg. 20 workers a couple hours to dig that much material by hand with shovels.
But while productivity is important, on-the-job safety is the chief reason
Productivity has increased signifi-
why Husky Hydrovac opted for hydroexcavating trucks. In fact, Barker says that
cantly with the trucks as they can without the trucks, staying in business would be increasingly difficult because
remove 2 1/2 to 3 cubic yards of dirt more and more major gas and oil companies – taking their cues from insurance
an hour.
companies – will work only with contractors that own hydroexcavating equip-
“We sell safety all the time,” Barker says. “We help companies keep their

26 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

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from harm. We’re trying to keep people from blowing holes in the ground.
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need to use a hydroexcavator to locate and expose pipe.” Kit at your shop with your folks.

Established in 2009, Husky Hydrovac is now a year-round contractor,
thanks to the X-10s. That’s because they can heat water to 160 degrees F and 785-325-2000 emisales.net 877-500-3993
excavate frozen ground. An antifreeze system keeps water from freezing in sensi-
tive lines when the truck isn’t in use, and a recirculation system keeps heated
water moving to prevent freeze-ups during operation, Barker says.
The trucks also allow the company to gain entry into a new market for
hydrotesting. “If they need more flow, we can hook up to the trucks and bring
the pipes up to pressure,” Barker explains. “Sometimes that requires 3,000 psi
or more, depending on the thickness of the pipe. It opens up a new market
for us.” 715/546-2680
Overall, Barker says the X-10s are indispensable assets.
“We’ve been able to convince our bankers that hydroexcavators are the Highway 45
(3) Hazleton Twin Volute Submersible Three Lakes, WI
way to go,” he says. “I would say they’ve increased our profits by about 20
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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 27

Tech Perspectives

Pillow Talk Collapsible fabric tanks can provide cost-effective

liquid storage solutions for GOM contractors
By Peter Kenter

Since World War ii, collapSible pilloW or bladder “The civilian customer is looking for a large containment system that’s
tanks have been employed by both the armed forces and the resource industry transported easily,” says paul reichard, division manager with Sei. “They’re
for temporary and long-term liquid storage, including fuel, oil, kerosene, water looking at how this product will save them money versus a steel tank and
and other chemicals. as the resource sector explores increasingly harsh terrain, drums to provide storage capacity where none exists. They demand a turnkey
tank designs and materials must keep pace with the industry. operation with everything required for immediate deployment. The military
The biggest change in north american pillow tank construction over the
decades has been the material used and the manufacturing methods. While vul-
canized rubber is still used for collapsible storage in europe, the north ameri- “The average frac tank will be moved 12 times per
can industry has moved to polyurethane-coated fabric. summer and 12 times per winter. It has to be rapidly
Sei industries ltd. with headquarters in delta, british columbia is one of
a number of manufacturers of pillow tanks. it has designed, manufactured and deployable, hooked to a Cat and unrolled quickly. The
commissioned structural engineered fabric products and related systems for frac market required us to develop a 50-ounce fabric
remote site logistics since 1983. The GoM sector accounts for about two-thirds
of the company’s sales, with military contracts making up much of the rest. with a thicker and denser coating.”
aviation, environmental and firefighting customers round out the client roster. Paul Reichard
The difference between military and GoM clients?

doesn’t care about price. They want instantaneously usable

storage that’s tough as nails.”
product life depends on a number of factors, including
the tank design, the client’s needs, and how often the tank
is moved. Tanks built to U.S. military spec, for example,
are designed to last 18 to 36 months and/or three moves.
Tanks designed to canadian military spec must last six to
10 years with no limits to the number of moves.
introducing a liquid initiates the product life cycle. at
the end of that service life, tanks are rolled up, shredded
and used either as insulation or boiler fuel.

Thermal or rF consTrucTion
The tanks are primarily constructed using one of two
methods. in the first, the tanks are constructed thermally
with seams heated by either hot air or a hot metal wedge
that liquefies the surface coating of the tank material. The
material is then squeezed between contact rollers and
cooled as the seam is completed.
Pillow tanks are primarily “This method is fast and economical, but the alternate
constructed one of two ways: heating, rolling and cooling cycles can allow gaps to form if
thermally or using radio it’s not done properly,” says reichard.
frequency (RF) welding.
28 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11
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Sei uses radio frequency (rF) welding, a process that
liquefies the entire thickness of the fabric coating in a con-
sistent fashion by agitating the molecules at the optimum
frequency under a hydraulic press. “The big challenge with
rF is the slower speed of welding,” says reichard. “For a
two-foot seam it can take 30 to 45 seconds per weld.”
The company now uses a much larger purpose-built
rF welder that achieves the economics of hot air or hot bar
welding. but no matter how carefully constructed, pillow
tank seams are subject to diffusion, the migration of liquid
molecules from a high-pressure area to a lower-pressure
area between the panels. “These are not fuel leaks, but rep-
resent the migration of some of the volatile components in
the fuel, which have a lower flash point,” says reichard.

use deTermines Tank design

The three prime considerations for GoM sector tank
design: how much the tank will hold, the type of liquid
contents, and the climate where the tank will be employed.
The maximum fuel capacity of a collapsible tank is When considering tank design, ask yourself these three questions: How much will the tank hold? What type of
determined by safety regulations in each country. in the liquid will the tank contain? What climate will the tank be used in?
U.S., regulations allow fuel tanks to hold a maximum of
50,000 gallons, while in canada they’re limited to 30,000
gallons. in chile, by contrast, the tanks are limited to 10,000 gallons. The ether-based coating. However, diesel would require an ether-based coating in
smallest effective size for a stationary pillow tank is approximately 500 gallons. the jungle, but an ester-based coating in the arctic and desert.
“any smaller than that, and you’d find it more economical to use a drum,” says
reichard. arcTic, deserT, and jungle
physics determines the maximum tank height. “We build them to inflate Sei differentiates its product lines with an identifiable color scheme.
to a maximum of about 60 inches when full,” says reichard. “liquids just natu- camo-green represents jungles, brown represents deserts, and white is desig-
rally tend to spread out beyond that height.” nated for the arctic.
The tanks can be configured in any shape, from wide-open and flat, to “That’s as much camouflage as it is marketing,” says reichard. “We want
long and narrow, or from ellipses and donuts to octagons. them to be easily identified by the user, and easily differentiated.”
The essential differences between climate-specific models:
arctic tanks require significant UV resistance and are designed to be unfold-
“We construct the tanks using different coating materials, ed, deployed and re-folded at temperatures falling as low as -58 degrees F where
depending on the contents. A water tank can only be used they must remain flexible and strong. The vent system is designed to accom-
modate deep snowfalls. reichard says the most common question asked about
with water and a fuel tank can only be used with fuel. arctic tanks is whether polar bears like to snack on them. “To date, there has not
If you put fuel inside a water tank, for example, been one documented case of polar bears eating collapsible fuel tanks,” he says.
desert tanks require larger venting capacity to release pressure during sig-
it would degrade the coating.” nificant changes between cold night temperatures and broiling daytime ground
Paul Reichard temperatures as high as 176 degrees F. The tanks can be shaded by the sun
using a tent accessory, or covered with a new-style liner, essentially a pillowcase.
Jungle tanks require extra protection from a combination of ultraviolet
cloth weight indicates the strength and puncture-resistance of the enclo- light and hydrolysis, a chemical reaction in which water molecules act to break
sure. a light-duty water tank is built using 18-ounce fabric, while a fuel tank down polymers. “Hydrolysis could chew up a tank and spit it out,” says reich-
may be constructed of 38- or 45-ounce fabric. ard. “We now use a hydrolysis-resistant urethane bonded to a polymer cured
“We construct the tanks using different coating materials, depending on substrate.” While the other models are suitable for fuels with aromatic content
the contents,” says reichard. “a water tank can only be used with water and to 60 percent, the jungle models are best used with fuels containing fewer than
a fuel tank can only be used with fuel. if you put fuel inside a water tank, for 40 percent aromatic content.
example, it would degrade the coating.”
even apparently similar materials may require specific tank design. Gray siTe preparaTion
water, for example – wastewater generated by such activities as washing laundry preparing a site for pillow tanks isn’t rocket science. First locate level ter-
at a remote site – must be stored inside containers made from different fabrics rain away from buildings or watercourses, and remove rocks, sticks and debris.
and coatings than those used to store either potable water or sewage. The pillow tank is never placed directly on the ground but must be placed
climate likewise alters tank design. in a moderate climate, flexible gasoline inside a secondary containment system, or berm.
tanks generally require an ester-based coating, while diesel tanks require an (continued)
30 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11
51 Stone Rd www.vacuumsalesinc.com
Lindenwold, NJ 08021
800-547-7790 parts@vacuumsalesinc.com
Fax 856-627-3044 Vacuum Sales Inc.

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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 31

Arctic tanks require significant UV resistance and are designed to be unfolded,
deployed and re-folded at temperatures falling as low as -58 degrees F where
they must remain flexible and strong.

monThly inspecTions
Sei recommends that tanks be inspected monthly, including connections,
hoses and fittings.
contractors should also keep a record of what’s going into the tanks and
what’s coming out, says reichard. “if it’s fuel, we recommend limiting access
to the site to authorized personnel only, because theft is a major problem, even
on a remote site.”
a berm supporting a pillow tank full of fuel must remain empty of precipi-
tation to perform its functions as a containment system.
“What we’re concerned about is that a berm might fill with rain or melting
snow,” says reichard. “if there was a fuel spill, we don’t want fuel breeching the
“The berm structure depends on the regulations of each country,” says secondary containment system.”
reichard. “it could be an in-ground geotextile liner placed inside an excavated likewise, pressure vents on the tanks must also remain free of fluid or
depression, or a frame surrounded by a liner.” fallen snow. The systems are fitted with gravity drains that remove water, but
once in place, the contractor will install appropriate accessories, includ- will shut down if hydrocarbons make contact with a special cartridge inside the
ing pumps, vents and hoses. pillow tanks can also be interconnected to form drain.
a tank farm. Sei is testing a remote monitoring service that will allow the company to
“You dig the site holes, lay out all the tanks and connect them through a inform contractors of the condition and contents of pillow tanks when tanks are
manifold system,” says reichard. “You can install and fill a 10-million-liter-tank untended, often for two to three months.
farm inside three weeks.” “one of the misconceptions about something called a ‘pillow’ tank is that
The most common pillow tank user error: overfilling. The tanks have a it isn’t tough,” he says. “You can’t simply walk up to a pillow tank and stab it
design capacity for some overfill, but adding too much liquid puts a strain on with a knife—it takes a lot more than that to destroy one. even under a shock
tank material and creates inaccurate content readings. Second most common wave from a missile strike 30 meters away, the force of the shock wave tends to
user error: leaving a valve open. move over the surface of our pillow tank, not through it, so it doesn’t rupture.”

Field repair Techniques

pillow tanks can be repaired in the field, in the same way a patch is ap-
plied to an inflatable swimming pool. in military settings, the tanks have been
repaired after taking a bullet. “i have never heard of a bullet igniting fuel like you
see in the movies,” says reichard.
To repair small holes, the company supplies temporary plugs that can be
screwed into the tank. For small tears, the area of the fabric with the hole in it
is clamped to affect a temporary repair, and then the hole is repaired beyond
the clamp.
While mining currently represents the company’s most significant GoM
business, reichard says he expects oil and gas to take the lead with the intro-
duction of collapsible frac tanks. “The average frac tank will be moved 12 times
per summer and 12 times per winter,” he says. “it has to be rapidly deployable,
hooked to a cat and unrolled quickly. The frac market required us to develop a
50-ounce fabric with a thicker and denser coating that’s high in abrasion resis-
tance and puncture-resistant to -58 degrees F.”
The company has also designed and launched the bulk aviation Transport
Tank (baTT), a collapsible, double-walled, baffled fabric tank designed to trans-
port fuel to remote sites via aircraft.
The new design is part of a five-year rollout. The baTT must be designed
specifically to fit in each type of aircraft and approved for use in each country.
The design has been approved in colombia and the company expects approval
in canada this year, with alaska next on the list. Sei is also applying to the
international civil aviation organization for worldwide approval.
“Using it in the GoM field, you don’t have to take back empty drums
on the return air trip,” says
reichard. “roll up the tank Comments or Suggestions ...
and you can return with per-
Is there an emerging technology in the gas, oil or
sonnel, cargo or core samples mining industries you’d like us to investigate in
instead.” GOMC Tech Perspectives? Send your questions and story
suggestions to editor@gomcmag.com.

32 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 33
Product News

Product Spotlight
Eliminator Offers Hassle-
Free Pump Installations
By Ken Wysocky

The Eliminator package from Fruitland Tool & Mfg.

makes installation of the company’s vacuum pumps eas-
ier, thanks to a carbon steel bracket assembly that bolts to
a truck frame with a minimum of effort.
“All a customer or dealer has to do is mount it to the 370 or RCF 500 pumps, which generate airflow of 259 and 320
truck frame, connect the drive and plumbing systems and cfm at 18 inches Hg, respectively. The package also features a high-
they’re ready to go to work,” says Keith Myers, sales manager efficiency oil-catch muffler; powder-coated components for rust protection;
for Fruitland. “It takes five to eight hours, depending on the installer’s abil- a moisture trap; a stainless steel filter and four-way valve; pressure and vacu-
ity, versus 10 to 20 hours with a self-made bracket.” um relief valves; a pressure and vacuum gauge; and drain valves.
The unit weighs about 800 pounds, and is designed for 1,000- to The pumps are designed for easy maintenance. Vane-gauging ports, for
12,000-gallon tanks. It’s available in two different drive configurations that example, allow customers to check vane wear without disassembling the
accommodate right-angle and belt drives, and also comes in clockwise or pump. “It takes the guesswork out of vane wear,” Myers says.
counter-clockwise rotation, Myers says. For more information, visit www.fruitland-mfg.com or call 800/
The Eliminator package is primarily designed for Fruitland’s RCF 663-9003.


Water Cannon Inc. celebrates its 30th anniversary with the introduction of a
4,200-psi pressure washer. The unit has an aluminum frame with 13-hp Honda en-
gine and triplex ceramic plunger-type RSV series Annovi Reverberi pump. 800/333-
9274; www.watercannon.com.


The 4-inch by 4-inch Trilliant Cube LED WhiteLight work lamp from Grote
Industries has a polycarbonate lens and light rating of 1,000 lumens. The lamp has a
service rating of 50,000 hours and two beam patterns (wide flood and TractorPlus).
2 800/628-0809; www.grote.com.


The Ventis MX4 multigas detector from Industrial Scientific Corp. is a
lightweight, configurable device available with or without an integral pump and
is compatible with iNet. The unit detects one to four gases, including oxygen,
combustible gases (LEL or CH4) and any two of the following: CO, H2S, NO2 and
SO2. Designed for confined space monitoring or continuous personal monitoring in
hazardous environments, the gas detector can be used to draw samples from up to
100 feet. It has an audible alarm, LED visual alarms and vibrating alarm. 800/338-
3287; www.indsci.com.


OilClean bioremediation agent for oil-contaminated environments from Pro-
4 Act Biotech Inc. combines biological and patented technologies to naturally degrade
oil and restore oil-polluted ecosystems. The non-invasive and self-powered system
automatically distributes oil-eating microbes, nutrients and oxygen. The microbes
continue to multiply until the oil is gone. The joint venture between Pro-Act Biotech
and EcoSolutions LLC optimizes treatment by monitoring water quality to balance
nutrients and dissolved oxygen. The OilClean system regulates the flow of additives
through a control panel to maximize remediation and restoration. 800/772-3775;

34 GOMC www.gomcmag.com - JUN.11

The RTR-500DC handheld wireless data collector from T & D Corp. can moni-
tor and download data from 224 loggers and stores up to 256,000 readings that can
be uploaded to a PC. The unit has a graphic display with zoom function. It includes
a search mode for locating data loggers and a signal strength indicator. Transmission
distance is up to 500 feet, line of sight, which can be extended with wireless repeat-
ers. The pocket-size unit weighs 4.4 ounces and operates for 100 hours on two AAA
batteries. 518/669-9227; www.tandd.com.


Aluminum Series gas-powered, cold-water pressure washers from Shark Pres-
sure Washers feature a foldable handle and lightweight design, making them easy
to push or pull through grass, gravel or mud. Made of 1 1/4-inch tubing, models
range from 2.5 gpm at 2,700 psi to 3.8 gpm at 3,500 psi. 800/771-1881; www.


The MERLIN high-performance rotational viscometer from ATS RheoSystems is
capable of both steady shear and yield stress testing. Designed for routine rheologi-
cal tests, such as single-point viscosity checks for quality control, as well as complex
rheological evaluation for research and development, the viscometer is capable of
investigating the mixing, stirring and process flow characteristics of fluid systems. 7
The unit has Peltier temperature control for all measuring systems, cone and plate,
parallel plate and concentric cylinder measuring systems. It has an angular velocity
range of 0.01 to 200 rad/s, torque range of 0.005 to 20 mNm and temperature range
of -10 to 120 degrees C (14 to 248 F). 609/298-2522; www.atsrheosystems.com.


The Sidewinder pushrod inspection system from Advanced Inspection Tech-
nologies Inc. is designed for petrochemical, cleaning validation and other applica-
tions. It can inspect up to 100 feet of boiler tubes, floor drains, steam lines and other 8
difficult-to-reach areas. Weighing 4.5 pounds, the camera can snake through pipes
as small as 0.75 inches. Features include stainless steel cable reel, 720 X 480 pixel
image, fiberglass/stainless steel pushrod and LED light. Images can be recorded on
the removable 16 GB SD memory card. The internal battery can provide 3 hours of
continuous operation. 321/610-8977; www.aitproducts.com.


RGD3300H and RGD5000H diesel generators from Subaru are powered by
four-cycle, single-cylinder Hatz engines. The RGD3300H with 6.8-hp engine has a
rated output of 3,000 watts, while the RGD5000H has a 9.9-hp engine and output
rating of 5,000 watts. Both models have electric starters with recoil backup, GFCI 9
receptacles, and fuseless circuit breakers. Other features include full-power switch,
voltmeter and 12-volt DC charging, 4.4-gallon fuel tank and low-oil shutdown sys-
tem. 847/540-7300; www.subarupower.com.


STA-BIL Ethanol Treatment and Performance Improver from Gold Eagle Co. is
designed to protect gasoline and small engines from the effects of ethanol-blended
fuels. The formula, when used with every fill-up, protects against corrosion, helps
remove water from fuel, cleans fuel injectors, carburetors and intake valves. 800/ 10
621-1251; www.goldeagle.com. GOMC

Manufacturers and distributors serving the gas, oil and mining industries may send product news to editor@gomcmag.com.

JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 35

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Industry News

Suomi JoinS Gorman-rupp,

manSfield diviSion receiveS iSo
Chris Suomi joined the Gorman-Rupp Co. as
central district manager-engineered systems. Based Marketplace
in Wisconsin, he will cover North and South Dakota,
Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas,
Marketplace advertising
Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky advertising
and Tennessee. The company’s Mansfield, Ohio, division Chris Suomi
also achieved certification to ISO 14001:2004 for its Gas, Oil and Mining Contractor CONFINED
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The most intelligent operating
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JUN.11 - www.gomcmag.com GOMC 39
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