EDco on the job

Glue Removal at a Dave & Buster's

EDCO's TL-9, TMC-7 and VAC-200 in use to remove glue from a floor to prepare for a new material installation

When contractors or do-it-yourselfers replace flooring, they encounter another obstacle after peeling back the original material. Thick glues, mastics or other bonding materials remain on the surface and need to be removed before installing the new flooring.

That was the case at a Dave & Buster's in Cincinnati, Ohio, where the restaurant and gaming facility overhauled the floor surrounding its bar.

EDCO's National Account/ Export Sales Manager Tony Calcopietro and Construction Product Sales' Sales Manager Jesse Wendt took EDCO's Magna-Trap 9" Turbo-Lite Grinder (TL-9), 7" Turbo Edge Grinder (TMC-7) and VAC-200 to the restaurant and gaming facility to solve the applications involved in the project.

After removing the existing material, the dry glue remnant used to bond the material to the subfloor needed to be stripped away. The TL-9 with Magna-Blade tooling tore through the material quickly without affecting the concrete.

Magna-Blades use carbide tungserts to strip away soft/ thick coatings without grinding or removing the concrete surface.

Following the glue removal, a TMC-7 equipped with Dyma-Dots leveled and resurfaced the concrete all the way up to the edge of the bar to ensure a level floor once the new material was installed.

Most importantly for Dave & Buster's, the restaurant and gaming areas stayed open during these applications because of the dust suppression made possible with EDCO's VAC-200. Because of the industrial vacuum system, Cincinnati customers could continue enjoying the food and games that have made Dave & Buster's one of the popular go-to options for entertainment around the country.

employee profile

Evan Routzahn and College Football

Evan Routzahn (56) started 39 games as an offensive lineman at the University of Virginia

Current EDCO Safety Manager Evan Routzahn works to protect our employees from workplace injuries; but before his days at EDCO, Routzahn was tasked with protecting quarterbacks at the University of Virginia.

Football was a new sport for Routzahn when he entered Middletown High School as a freshman, as he was too big to play on any youth teams. During his sophomore season, it became clear to him that the sport could provide an avenue to a college education. Eventually, Routzahn became the first player from his high school to earn a Division-I football scholarship, which paved the way for future Middletown Knight players to be afforded that same opportunity, including one who became a fourth-round pick in 2018’s NFL Draft.

Routzahn elected to attend the University of Virginia over offers from Northwestern and University of North Carolina, among others. The school’s close proximity, recent football success and academic prestige influenced his decision to become a Cavalier.

The former offensive lineman started 39 games over four seasons, including three bowl games. Routzahn was a two-time member of the All-Academic ACC team and served as a team captain during his senior campaign in Charlottesville. His time in college featured matchups against two likely NFL Hall of Famers in Julius Pepper (University of North Carolina) and Richard Seymour (University of Georgia).

Routzahn featured on the front page of a Virginia Gameday Magazine

Renowned NFL Draft analyst Mel Kiper even once called him "one of the most underrated players -- and best guards -- in the country," in his 2001 Virginia football preview. Kiper ranked Routzahn as the fifth-best guard ahead of the 2002 draft.

Though he did not hear his name called in the NFL Draft, Routzahn signed with the Indianapolis Colts as an undrafted free agent. Before the Colts released him during training camp, he spent time in the same locker room as legendary quarterback Peyton Manning and had a locker next to Marvin Harrison, who's now in the NFL Hall of Fame.

Routzahn signing his undrafted free agent contract with the Indianapolis Colts

With his football career behind him, Routzahn carried the values of teamwork and leadership into his other professional endeavors. Outside of EDCO, Routzahn serves as the president of F.R.I.E.N.D.S., a Down Syndrome advocacy group in Frederick County, Maryland, which hosts an annual Buddy Walk and other events to raise awareness and promote community unification.

“Football taught me that nobody’s above the team in any field,” Routzahn said. “My captaincy taught me that whatever you’re up against, organizing a walk or teachers conference [for F.R.I.E.N.D.S.], everybody has a role and are representative of the whole group.”

In 2018, Routzahn was inducted into the YMCA of Frederick County’s Alvin G. Quinn Sports Hall of Fame.

Named after the executive director of the YMCA of Frederick County from 1919 to 1960, the Alvin G. Quinn Sports Hall of Fame recognizes individuals who, through their accomplishments and contributions in the field of athletics, bring honor to themselves and to Frederick County.

“It’s an honor because the inductees in years before me and the people I was inducted with carry the same attributes, as far as they are not only great athletes, but also great leaders within their sport and communities as well,” Routzahn said.

Edco history decades series

Our New Home (The 1970s)

Prior installments: Our Beginning (1959 and the 1960s)

In the year 1970, Ed Harding and Leo Swan purchased the EDCO division and it officially became a separate entity from Rental Tools & Equipment.

As EDCO continued to serve more and more of the rental industry, it became clear that a new building was necessary to support our growth. In 1976, our co-founders and the relatively small collection of employees relocated the operation from Silver Spring, Maryland, approximately 40 miles northwest to Frederick, Maryland.

EDCO's first Frederick location

At both the Silver Spring location and the new building, which EDCO leased from Frederick Electronics, new designs and innovations were implemented on the machines that were created in 1959 and throughout the 1960s.

One example of the commitment to improving machines came on the dual-disc grinder during the 1970s. During this time, health officials began to understand the hazards of silica dust. Silica is a microscopic dust hidden inside visible concrete and masonry dust clouds. Long-term exposure causes silicosis and other respiratory diseases. In response to this health alert, EDCO added dust shrouds with vacuum hook-ups to products. Adding vacuum capabilities kept workers safe and drastically reduced jobsite cleaning times, making jobs faster.

Before moving to the new location, the team at EDCO developed an industrial floor surfacer and paint remover, which was officially added to the product line in 1975. After moving to Frederick, EDCO released the single-disc concrete grinder in 1977, a portable masonry saw in 1978, and a self-propelled concrete saw in 1978 that was made to meet long-distance cutting applications.

A page from a 1970s EDCO catalog

Three years after moving to the Frederick location, EDCO’s sustained growth necessitated an expansion of the building. In 1979, the leased building was doubled in size to accommodate our growing company.

It was also in this decade that EDCO received national recognition as Leo Swan, one of our co-founders, received the American Rental Association (ARA) Special Service Award, which is annually awarded to suppliers who have made outstanding contributions to the rental industry.

Problem Solving with Edco

The Problem:

Grooving Barn Floors

Slippery surfaces can be just as hazardous to animals as they are to humans. In the agriculture industry, cows are susceptible to slipping on slick barn surfaces that aren’t textured properly.

Grooving barn floors gives cows traction on those surfaces and helps eliminate the threat of cows sustaining wear and tear or serious injuries. With EDCO’s Self Propelled Crete-Planers, operators can groove large barn floors to the best patterns for cow traffic to safely walk on.

Installing grooves on concrete surfaces is the best option because the cows’ hooves catch on the grooves in the surface to eliminate slippage. Roughening up the concrete surface is not recommended, as that can cause damage to the hooves and be unstable for their walking posture. Additionally, non-slip treatments will not hold up over time with the amount of cow traffic faced daily.

EDCO’s 10” Self Propelled Crete-Planer (model CPU-10FC), equipped with a grooving drum setup of carbide cutters and spacers, helps operators achieve straight, diagonal and diamond grooving patterns for barns.

The drum setup for this application should space the cutters out evenly for consistent width between grooves, which provides the best walking conditions for the herd.

The Self-Propelled Crete-Planer features a larger working width and higher productivity rate (500-750 square feet per hour at a ⅛” depth per pass) than the Walk Behind models, which makes it the best option for large areas like barns.

A straight groove pattern is ideal for areas with straight traffic flow, such as walkways from the barn to the parlor. Diagonal patterns are used to catch hooves in areas where cows need to make sharp turns. A diamond pattern, a complete combination of straight and diagonal, is largely regarded as the best grooving pattern in barns, as it catches the hooves in all directions.

With grooved floors, farmers protect their investments on their animals. Grooving floors is the most cost-effective option to maintain productivity and longevity of the cows kept in the barns.

EDCO's 10" Self-Propelled Crete-Planer (CPU-10FC)

CPU-10FC Training Video

Also ideal for: Parking deck repairs, road repairs, factory floor cleaning and/or preparation and large floor repairs

Machine Highlights

  • 10" working width
  • Planes approximately 500-750 square feet per hour at a 1/8" depth per pass
  • Upcut Drum Rotation
  • Hydrostatic drive transmission for smooth forward and reverse speed control
  • Optional outrigger axle assembly enables the machine to follow slab contours closely when working with uneven surfaces or when uniform surface removal is critical
  • Vacuum port for safe dust prevention procedures

CPU-1oFC Drum

  • Convertible hood design on CPU-10FC model allows for multiple drum setups
  • Easy access on CPU-10FC for quick drum changes
  • Drum accepts both carbide and steel cutters to qualify the machine for multiple applications

CPU-10FC Drum Setup for grooving applications, such as on dairy barn floors

EDCO Adopts Alternative Packing Material

For years, the shipping department at Equipment Development Company - EDCO had been using packing peanuts to cushion our parts and accessories inside boxes. But in 2019, we sought out alternative methods and transitioned to packing paper.

MTA Distributors, one of EDCO's valuable partners in our distribution network, implored us to look at different methods so that customers wouldn’t have to sift through packing peanuts to dig the product out of the box.

With the high standards that MTA Distributors has for delivering products to customers in the best way possible, we accepted the feedback and worked with MTA to find the solution.

In looking to make the change from Styrofoam, we conducted a study on our usage rates of packing peanuts versus the potential alternative of packing paper. After a week trial, we found that packing paper didn’t significantly alter box weights or costs incurred with material usage.

Ultimately, it’s led to easier packing and unpacking for all parties involved.

“It’s less of a mess for the customers, and it’s also less of a mess for us when we’re packing the products here,” EDCO shipping team member Matthew Lenhart said.

Another benefit to making the switch to packing paper is eliminating the use of a product detrimental to the environment.

Packing peanuts are most commonly made of polystyrene (more commonly known as Styrofoam), and are difficult to dispose of because the material doesn’t decompose. Biodegradable packing peanuts are available, but are more expensive in cost and are also heavier – which means higher shipping costs for customers.

Packing peanuts can also end up in potentially harmful environmental areas – such as in waterways – and pose a threat to wildlife that mistake them for food.

In 2019, EDCO’s home state, Maryland, became one of the first states to ban Styrofoam takeout containers and cups at restaurants. Maryland takes pride in its waterways, such as the Inner Harbor in Baltimore and the Chesapeake Bay, and continuously seeks out initiatives to keep them clean.

The state law, which goes into effect in July 2020, doesn’t ban packing peanuts, but still serves as a motivating factor toward finding better methods for packing.

Now that packing peanuts are phased out of our shipping department, we encourage our customers to recycle the packing paper that's now being used to ship our products.

Our Home: Frederick, MD

Area School Program Links High School Students to New Experiences

EDCO Powder Coating Team Leader Curtis Carpenter gives students instruction on powder coating their take-home "LYNX" gift

LYNX – “Linking Youth to New Experiences” – is a program at nearby Frederick High School that provides a flexible and individualized high school experience that’s entering its third year. The program offers community experiences that allows students to explore what they’re interested in.

In late March, we hosted the LYNX Program to introduce a group of eight students to offer insight about manufacturing and jobs.

Students received an inside look at our manufacturing process and other valuable takeaways from the visit as part of their LYNX program at Frederick High School.

Starting with our Technical Department Team Lead Kenny Kober, students saw how our computer-aided design program sets the mold for the finished product. The students then saw the raw material transformed into a complete LYNX logo, which they received as a souvenir from their visit to EDCO.

EDCO's Technical Department Team Leader gives students a lesson on Computer-Aided Design (CAD)

Our Human Resources Manager Cindy Malone also gave students resume-building advice and interview tips that can help them secure jobs in high school and beyond.

This field trip was the second consecutive year that EDCO has welcomed LYNX to our building. LYNX started at Frederick High School in 2017, and may expand within Frederick County and other counties in the state in the future.

Students within the program choose the experiential field trips they want to attend based on the community partnerships that LYNX has made.

In addition to EDCO, students have visited AstraZeneca to learn about the biopharmaceutical field, Bar-T Mountainside to explore the ranch’s childcare program and renewable energy initiatives, along with many others. In all, over 65 partners from businesses, the community and higher education have partnered with LYNX to provide these experiences for students.

These experiences are beneficial to students, allowing them exposure to what they’re interested in pursuing, while also beneficial to the community businesses. These businesses can make connections and teach students more about what the industry entails.

As the manufacturing industry continues to evolve and change, EDCO was eager to welcome these students the past two years to show them that manufacturing goes beyond just air tools and assembly lines, and we look forward to continuing this partnership in the future.

Created By
Eric Myers