In September 2013 a major fire at the Leeds facility of specialist air conditioning and IT cooling manufacturer, Airedale International, disrupted operations.
To minimise the impact on delivery levels, Airedale quickly relocated to an alternative site close to Leeds city centre. This posed a challenge for building services contractor, TClarke Ltd., appointed to manage the
installation of Airedale's specialist in-house R&D facility, which is one of the largest of its kind in Northern Europe.
To meet this challenge, the project team at TClarke Ltd. turned to GRINNELL Products, part of Tyco Mechanical
Products, and its range of grooved piping solutions in
order to reduce installation time and cost of the project. Having worked with GRINNELL on previous building services projects, TClarke Ltd. was confident that the
GRINNELL grooved mechanical pipe jointing method could save valuable installation time and reduce safety risks through the elimination of hot works, alongside
the requirement for necessary permits.
TClarke Ltd. specified a complete grooved mechanical solution from GRINNELL, including painted finish couplings and fittings in sizes 1.25" - 8", butterfly valves, strainers, check valves, circuit balancing valves and groove end metering stations. Working with one
supplier reduced supply chain complexity and involved GRINNELL during the early stages of the building services system design, enabling the team to provide guidance and advice on how best to meet the tight installation schedule.
Close involvement by the GRINNELL team in the project was key to achieving a high quality installation. Working with the piping subcontractor, JD Pipework, GRINNELL carried out a detailed training session with the site installation team, and supervised by the TClarke project team, to support them during the pipe fitting phase of the programme. This training combined installation guidance on the range of GRINNELL grooved products specified for the project, and practical, safe, hands-on operation of the GRINNELL grooving machine which works in tandem with its grooved range of components. Weekly site visits by the GRINNELL engineering team also ensured any unexpected issues could be dealt with quickly and efficiently.
Installation of the building services system was completed in eight weeks through the use of the GRINNELL grooved range. In comparison, welded
joints would have taken approximately three to four times longer for this type of project. This speed of installation helped to ensure the overall construction schedule was kept to a minimum, enabling Airedale to avoid unnecessary loss of production.
"We're familiar with the GRINNELL grooved product range having worked with the team on previous
projects," comments Keith Pearson, project manager at TClarke Ltd. "The tight construction schedule meant that we required a robust and reliable jointing method that would save us valuable time while also protecting the safety of the installation team. The training provided by GRINNELL was an added benefit to our pipework subcontractor and ensured a hassle-free installation
of the mechanical system. We're delighted with the technical support and guidance provided by the GRINNELL Products team."
Mark Lane, sales manager, Tyco Mechanical Products, adds, "Fast and efficient installation were key to avoiding lost production for Airedale International.
Working in close collaboration with the team at TClarke from the project outset enabled us to identify where valuable time could be saved and where additional
support could be provided to the installation team. We've been running our on-site training initiative for over 10 years, and in that time we've trained many
thousands of contractors. And once individuals complete the training, they're certified for any future projects, which we believe promotes high quality
workmanship and supports the skills development of building services installers."
Airedale continues to operate from its alternative site until its brand new, purpose-built facility is completed at the end of 2015.