Monthly Archives: August 2014

American Foundry Society (AFS) Recognizes Larry Bowers & Holly Guerrero

We are proud to report that two McWane team members were presented with awards at the 26th Annual Environmental Health and Safety Conference held this August in Atlanta, Georgia.

Larry Bowers, Group Environmental Compliance Director for McWane who also serves on the AFS Water Quality & Waste Disposal and Air Quality Committees, was presented with a service award from the American Foundry Society. The award was presented for dedication and service to help build and improve environmental, safety, and health conditions within the metal-casting industry.

Pacific States’ Assistant Environmental Manager Holly Guerrero was also recognized at the conference. The AFS presented Holly with the EHS Division 10 Outstanding New Person Award in recognition of her active participation in Committee activities and continually volunteering her time and talents to Committee projects.

Congratulations Larry & Holly! Keep up the great work!

VOTE for Synapse Wireless!

Synapse Wireless, Inc. and Shoals Technologies have been nominated for the Solar Industry Awards 2014 within the “Systems Integration Award” category for their SolarSNAP Wireless Monitoring Tool.

Entry was selected by the panel of judges from the global solar industry who thought that the product deserved recognition because of its innovative live access monitoring of PV Installations.

The voting has begun and closes on September 6, which gives almost exactly two weeks to get those votes in!
Vote Here:

Note: In order to submit your vote, you will need to complete the entire ballot – not just the one category Synapse are nominated in. You may only vote once.

Kudos to the entire Synapse Solar team for all their hard work! Not only is this a great testament their commitment to their work, but it truly solidifies the greatness behind the Synapse partnership with Shoals, and their ability to develop products that are revolutionizing the solar industry.

Synapse Wireless is a McWane Company.

Amerex Hosts a Visit from Alabama Congressman Mike Rogers

Alabama Congressman Mike Rogers stopped by Amerex in Trussville, Alabama, for a visit and a brief tour today. Congressman Rogers represents the 3rd District of Alabama and serves on the Agriculture, Armed Services, and Homeland Security Committees, which are all vital to Alabama’s interests.

Firefighting is very familiar to Congressman Rogers since his father was a firefighter, so this Amerex visit definitely hit close to home.

We were honored that he took time out of his busy schedule to drop by for a visit!

McWane Team Visits Ductile Iron Pipe Facilities in China

McWane Team in China

L to R: Dan Copeland (McWane Global), Kent Brown (Pacific States), Jeff Otterstedt (DIP Group), Tom Crawford (Clow Water), Gopi Ramanathan (McWane Global), Li Xin (Tyler Xianxian), Tom McKinley (McWane International), and Dale Schmelzle (Atlantic States)

Last month, team members from McWane Global, McWane International, and the McWane Ductile Iron Pipe (DIP) Group came together for a whirlwind tour in China. The group visited and reviewed operations at four DIP plants, three DIP machine shops, and three lost foam fitting foundries, all in just six days!

The group was exposed to the dreaded “Gopi Schedule” which allowed barely 4-5 hours of sleep a day throughout the trip. The tour followed the successful commissioning of the new casting machine at Pacific States and was undertaken to review and study the technologies and machines used in overseas pipe plants which are currently using two machines that McWane has purchased and is awaiting installation.

The team did take time out to visit the Great Wall of China early on Sunday morning on their way to one of the DIP plants, which was 3 hours away from the Wall.

Meet McWane: Craig Whiting, Pacific States

Craig Whiting 45 YearsThe team members at Pacific States recently bid Craig Whiting a fond farewell after 45 years of service. Craig’s first years at Pac States were in the valve and hydrant shop, but he also helped in casting when needed. In 1982, he moved to the storeroom where he spent the last 32 years driving a forklift.

Craig said, “I have gone through 6 forklifts while working the Storeroom.”

Craig has been married for 21 years and has a blended family with 8 children. He also has 23 grandchildren and one great grandchild. Craig enjoys spending times with his grandchild, especially if they go fishing. Craig plans to travel, fish whenever he can,k’la and search for rocks and ghost towns.

We wish you a long and happy retirement Craig and watch out for those ghost towns!

MSPL Inaugurates Valve Manufacturing Division in Coimbatore, India

MSPL Valve Manufacturing Division InaugurationWe are proud to announce that McWane Services Private Limited (MSPL) inaugurated the Valve Manufacturing Division (VMD) in Coimbatore, India. The facility has the capacity to produce 50,000 valves per year and has its own CNC machining centers, coating plant, assembly and testing machines. The work on this facility commenced in February 2014 and was operational within 6 short months.

Most of the machines are operational with plans to commission the testing machines by August 15. The products produced at this facility will service the growing Indian water and wastewater industry, and will allow us to provide ISO valves for Latin America as well as certain valve components for McWane Gulf. All of the castings will be acquired from local foundries.

Attending the inauguration on behalf of McWane were Mike Keel, Gopi Ramanathan, Chris Nichols, Ray Schofield, John McCreary, AJ Bowman, Wade Oakes (Synapse), Max Felix, and Sasi Pillai.  Kudos to Kumaraswamy Shanmugham and his energetic VMD team for achieving this within such a short time frame. Thanks, also, to Arne Feyling and Ray Schofield who provided the necessary technical assistance to make this plant a reality.

With this valve plant in operation, McWane has firmly set its foot in Asia to service the Indian subcontinent.

Amerex Hosts NAVPPC Meeting

Amerex NAVPPC MeetingAmerex was proud to host the quarterly meeting of the North Alabama Voluntary Protection Program Committee at the Trussville Civic Center. Over 50 industry representatives from companies in central and northern Alabama participated in the event. Included were speakers presenting on topics such as incident investigation, an update on the OSHA’s focus areas, and an overview of “The McWane Story”. Following the morning meeting and lunch, attendees toured the facility at Amerex where a mock VPP audit was conducted.

Amerex is taking the steps necessary to pursue VPP certification. Many of the attendee/auditors commented on how well Amerex was prepared and that they believed the facility would be able to achieve VPP in the near future.

Keep up the great work, Amerex! Your hard work will soon pay off!

Nighthawk introduces Cloud Based Solar Solutions for Utilties

Nighthawk Logo_1

August 5, 2014

Nighthawk, the leader in cellular based utility meter solutions announces the release of a Net Meter version of its RDM960 meter platform for solar applications along with its Cloud based Consumer Portal tool. The RDM960 provides full interval data either directly as a production meter or as a Net Meter. Utilizing its cellular read capability the meter can be installed anywhere in a utility’s service territory without the need for any infrastructure build out. Utilities can receive daily, weekly or monthly reads over the air for SREC (Renewable Energy Credits) reporting. The Consumer Portal allows customers to see detailed information on solar generation and usage in simple to read graphs.

The growth of solar energy presents new challenges to utilities with requirements for detailed and more frequent data collection. Often customers want to understand the hour-by-hour benefits they are getting from their significant investments.  Nighthawk’s solar solutions meet those challenges and exceed them fulfilling the needs of customers adopting solar power while enabling utilities to remotely collect more detailed data on a more frequent basis.

Nighthawk’s Consumer Portal provides customers with access to web based charts and graphs detailing their energy usage and production. In this information age, users have come to expect easily accessible metrics. Providing detailed information, in easy to understand charts, reduces questions from consumers on system performance and delivers comparative day to day generation values.  These Consumer Portal features can be integrated within your own website or hosted separately. Additionally, Nighthawk Solar Solutions provide TOU readings for both generated and received power with interval data for periodic retrieval.

The Nighthawk RDM960 solar solution Net metering device is integrated inside a standard meter shell and is completely “under glass”. Like all Nighthawk devices it requires no infrastructure or build-out. It is an incremental solution that can be used out of the box when and where you need it. Utilizing the robust public cellular system it communicates and is controlled via Nighthawk’s Cloud-based Utility WebConnect™ browser accessible application.

Nighthawk’s Solar Solutions make solar work smarter for both the utility and the customer directly saving you money while increasing your situational awareness and control possibilities.

Nighthawk’s Utility WebConnect is an award winning Cloud-based Web application running 24/7, and connected to multiple communications gateways, both issuing commands to remote devices and receiving information from them. Utility WebConnect interoperates directly over the Web or via automated data uploads with most utility billing systems.

Even when utility personnel are not online, Utility WebConnect is collecting meter readings, issuing automated batch commands to devices and alerting utility personnel of alarming events via cellular text messages or email.


About Nighthawk: Nighthawk is a mobility leader in machine to machine connected devices and Cloud-based control solutions. For over two decades, we have pioneered intelligent devices and systems that allow for the centralized on-demand management of assets and processes. Nighthawk manages machine to machine communications on over 20 networks worldwide.


Nighthawk products are used throughout North America, the Caribbean and Asia in a variety of mission critical applications, including hardened and secure utility control. We are building the future of mobility solutions for machine to machine control with our WebConnect™ device strategy.

Nighthawk is a subsidiary of McWane Inc, a leading manufacturer of ductile iron pipe, valves, hydrants, and fittings. McWane products make up the backbone of vital water distribution and wastewater treatment systems throughout North America, dependably providing the U.S. with clean drinking water. The company operates 25 manufacturing plants including 13 iron foundries across the United States, Canada, Australia, and China.


For more information about Nighthawk solutions and products, please visit:

Futurecom Systems Group, ULC in Partnership with Motorola Solutions, Inc. Announces New VRX1000 VEHICLE RADIO EXTENDER



New Orleans, August 4, 2014:  Futurecom Systems Group, ULC in partnership with Motorola Solutions, Inc. today announced the introduction of the VRX1000, a new vehicle radio extender product line that offers portable radio coverage extension for public safety agencies and utilities.

The VRX1000 is a compact 3 watt simplex radio extender available in VHF, UHF, 700 MHz and 800 MHz bands and can be configured for cross-band or in-band operation. The VRX1000 is compatible with APX™4500, APX™6500 and APX™7500 series mobile radios.  Being fully upgradable from an analog only extender to a full P25 trunking extender makes the VRX1000 the only product in the market place to give customers the flexibility as they upgrade their systems.

“Public safety agencies are telling us that they are seeking a cost effective vehicle radio extender that can stand up to the most demanding environment. By working closely with Motorola Solutions we have developed the VRX1000. Together our 3W simplex VRX1000 and our 10W full duplex DVRS product lines provide total portable radio coverage solutions.” said Paul Halinaty Futurecom CEO.

Futurecom will be showcasing the VRX1000 at the 80th Annual Association of Public Safety Communications Officials Exposition and Conference in New Orleans, LA.  Booth #434 from August 4-5th, 2014.

The 700 MHz and 800 MHz versions of the VRX1000 will be shipping in the fourth quarter of 2014.  The VHF and UHF versions will be available in the first half of 2015.

Headquartered in Concord, ON, Futurecom Systems Group, ULC is a leader in the design and manufacture of RF coverage extension products for public safety customers. Futurecom’s customers include major radio equipment OEMs, public safety users, utilities, integrators and two-way radio dealers. Futurecom is owned by McWane Inc., a family-owned business located in Birmingham, AL. McWane is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of iron water works and plumbing products, and one of America’s largest privately owned companies.


About Motorola Solutions Motorola Solutions is a leading provider of mission-critical communication solutions and services for enterprise and government customers. Through leading-edge innovation and communications technology, it is a global leader that enables its customers to be their best in the moments that matter. Motorola Solutions trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker “MSI.” To learn more, visit

MOTOROLA, MOTO, MOTOROLA SOLUTIONS and the Stylized M Logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Motorola Trademark Holdings, LLC and are used under license. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. ©2014 Motorola Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.


Meet McWane: Don Bird and Donnie Blizzard, Clow Valve


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Recently, Clow Valve bid a fond farewell to two team members with a combined service of 85 years!

Donnie Blizzard retired on May 9th after 43 years of service. Donnie was a dedicated and loyal employee who worked clean-up in the machine shop for many years on 2nd shift. Donnie was joined at his retirement party by his children and grandchildren, along with fellow team members and retirees.

Don Bird retired on May 30th after 42 years of service. Don was a Production Scheduler at the Machine Shop and always gave 100%. Don was also joined at his retirement party by his wife, his children, his grandchildren and his fellow team members and retirees.

We wish them both a very happy and enjoyable retirement!