Ries - I know you have written before about traveling to Germany and Japan to tour shops there, and that they didn't buy made in China machinery, but rather more locally made equipment. Would that go for labor as well? Do Germany and Japan have laws about employing local workers on projects like this? I know Japan must be doing a ton of rebuilding in the past year or two. Just curious how they handle this.
Originally Posted by Ries
[QUOTE=Ries;1843656]Regardless of what you think of the deficit, and the way its being paid off or not, Obama has NOT spent any significant money on US infrastructure, or changed the laws to make it harder for foreign bidders to get the jobs.
Ohmamma has pissed away a hell of alot more than that setting up his cohorts and self. If he wasnt such a crook and truly believed in helping the country instead of himself and a certain ethnic group things would become better. very slowly but sometime.
I truly believe he is trying to destroy the us for the actions of past whites... Ducking,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, : )
Originally Posted by adammil1
Adam, generally speaking, on a project like this, you start a dedicated company just for the job. Almost no construction job over a couple hundred million or so is done any other way these days. So a company would be started just for this, incorporated from scratch. This would be the general contractor. All the site specific equipment- earthmovers, cranes, pile drivers, barges, and stuff like that- is leased, usually job to job, or a sub is hired just for this job. So no equipment sits around waiting for jobs like this, its allways being shuttled around from one job to the next- or, often, bought specially for a job- a backhoe, for example, will often be delivered new, for a project like this, and be leased, for 3 to 5 years the job takes, and then usually sold used downmarket at the end of the job, well worn.
As for the actual steel fab- again, a lot of that is put together job by job. Its amazing how little equipment is needed for this- most likely, the cutting and probably punching would be subbed out to a supplier, who has a CNC beam line. If you need to lease a CNC beam line for the duration of the job, thats easy enough, Peddinghaus would probably need six months lead time, but it would be turnkey, able to cut, drill, punch, and mark all the structural steel at a frantic rate. Beyond that, there is a lot of rebar, which is often either ordered in prebent, or bent on site with a small, under $20,000 cnc rebar bender. Then, a bunch of welding machines, which are, again, on a job like this, basically consumables, bought new or leased, and sold cheap at the end of 3-5 years of rough use.
So, this sort of thing is not dependent on some huge infrastructure- you rent a field or an empty warehouse, you install a few hundred grand worth of simple machines, and you start cranking. And thats for steel- concrete, of which there is usually quite a bit, is even simpler, cheaper, and more on site.
Actually, the US has been a leader in mini-mills since the 60's, we have much more capacity than we are producing right now, so domestic steel wouldnt be a big problem either.
Again, the big factor is money. US real estate, taxes, labor, and overhead are all more than China, plus the Chinese government subsidizes exporters in many ways, making it even cheaper.
If we wanted to pay US companies to build bridges, there is no question the companies would rise to the occasion and tool up accordingly.
I am not sure what "that" was that Obama pissed away more than- but the fact remains that, by historical standards, or compared to the countries we are actually competing with, Obama has managed to spend very little money on infrastructure. He probably would like to have spent more, but the congress wont pass the bills.
Originally Posted by Ries
Originally Posted by Ries
I had suspected a lot of the equipment would be rather simple and easy despite the enormous size, but on these big jobs do they have any real high ticket bending equipment or the likes, that can cost a small fortune to set up? I know when it comes to boilers for example other than Alstom Chattanooga the ex (Combusiton Engineering) shops, almost all of it has gone oversees if for nothing else than that the Chinese are building 100large scale power boilers for every 1 we were building. I would bet on a Bay Bridge project that China too may be building 10bridges of that size for every one we build so is there any infrastructure advantage that they may also have or is it really just people and taxes?
If you look at the old "Combustion" book, once published by CE there is a picture of a 6K ton press bending a probably 10-12" thick piece of sheet metal to form a steam drum in the old Chatanooga shops. When I was working for Alstom back in 2008 they had just taken that press out of service to ship to China, basically no one today is building steam boilers with steam drums in the USA, while China was building several a year. Bottom line is if you want to buy a large power boiler with a steam drum in this country it will almost certainly be made in China. Could any of this effect be taking place with bridges?
In this case of the large steam drum press from what I gather it wasn't a total loss for US manufacturing capability as they were taking it out to put in its place a brand new 23' swing Waldrich Seigen lathe that can turn a steam turbine weighing up to 350tons. Here's the shop today. Alstom Chattanooga Turbine Facility - Power Technology
Adam, google "new bay bridge" and look at images. You will see that the vast majority of it is precast and cast in place concrete, where the only metal is rebar. Then, there is one really big set of towers, which are tapering polygons with cables. No rolling anywhere that I can see.
I worked on the Seattle baseball stadium, and had to coordinate with the guys who built the rolling roof structure. While they had a very large building, and some nice bridge cranes, I was amazed at how few tools they had, or needed, to build it. Even the "curved" trusses were almost all just lots of shorter straight pieces. Just lots of cutting and welding.
The USA has actually been getting a pretty good sized wind generator tower industry in the last ten years, with rolls capable of doing 20' to 30' pieces of 1 1/2" plate. We dont make the rolls- they are usually Italian- but there are lots of em here now, making the towers.
Outsourcing is the way our country works.
You attribute this to reis, and it is JKing's rant:
"Ohmamma has pissed away a hell of alot more than that setting up his cohorts and self. If he wasnt such a crook and truly believed in helping the country instead of himself and a certain ethnic group things would become better. very slowly but sometime.
I truly believe he is trying to destroy the us for the actions of past whites... Ducking,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, : ) "
I gotta assume he is a racist, Obama is black, Bush is white, so for Bush to spend TRILLIONS is OK, to ruin the country, but for Obama, the Black Guy, to LEND TRILLIONS to try to get us back on track is bad.
China holds about ONE TRILLION of our debt. Japan about the same. Mitt Romney and a bunch of other financiers, lots more than that, YOUR 402 holds a lot, and is MORE than willing to lend to the USG.
Hell, SS holds 2.6 TRILLION bucks of it. One of the largest holders of it, PROBABLY the largest SINGLE holder of US Debt, after the FED.
I would rather a US company had the balls to do this job, without the profit they probably built into the bid, I would think too much. If US welders are so much better, they should be paid more, and the job should be done with fewer billable hours.
I would not like to weld for 8 hours per day either, nasty work, but it is a living. I think we HAVE them, but we won't hire them, they cost too much, not that 20+ bucks an hour is a killer, but that the Lead Contractor chargers 4 times that FOR that Welder. THAT makes the job 500 million bucks more than the Chinese bid. Excess Profit!
There was actually a show on the tube not too long ago, that addressed the Bay Bridge Project. A company here in the States had bid on it, with the intent of setting up the manufacturing facility to do it. New building, machines,etc, to be able to handle the job. cant remeber exactly what station, but sat down to watch it. Commiefornia was able to skirt the req' in a only politician can crooked way.
Please, Obama sold the "stimulus" on "shovel ready jobs", i.e. infrastructure, his words. His first two years in office he had both the House and Senate, he could have passed anything he wanted, and he did. It's called "OBAMA CARE"!! That is what he wanted to pass. He could care less about jobs and infrastructure, he's into screwing over this country for supposed pass atrocities to others and making us a third world country.
Originally Posted by Ries
Actually this is not so. When Ted Kennedy died the Democrats lost their veto override, allowing the Republicans to block anything...
Originally Posted by 67Cuda
which they did and do for everything he has tried to do ever since.
Even things that everyone knows are good for the nation.
McConnel said it best - “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”
Some other things to consider...1/3 of the stimulus was tax cuts. 1/3 was UE extensions, the rest went to various spending programs.
I google'd the bay bridge project and found the following 2 articles;
Originally Posted by Ries
California Turns To China For New Bay Bridge : NPR
Here's one quote from the NYT article;
While both articles allude to US shops not having the capabilities I do wonder how much of the capabilities our shops lack is just the missing $12/day welders, vs real infrastructure needs for projects of this scale.
But California officials and executives at American Bridge said Zhenhua’s advantages included its huge steel fabrication facilities, its large low-cost work force and its solid finances. (The company even had its own port and ships.)
“I don’t think the U.S. fabrication industry could put a project like this together,” Brian A. Petersen, project director for the American Bridge/Fluor Enterprises joint venture, said in a telephone interview. “Most U.S. companies don’t have these types of warehouses, equipment or the cash flow. The Chinese load the ships, and it’s their ships that deliver to our piers.”
But at the same time reading through the articles the 2 real high ticked infrastructure issues I saw was it looks like the first requisite to doing a job like this is you need a huge piece of land next to a large body of water with a deep sea port and some serious cranes. I don't know quite what the US's inventory of such working sites are but some how I would think the number of these types of facilities is far smaller than it once was. Going with shop erected parts always is cheaper than field erection. Plus the other big issue is just the pool of labor availability. If your shop wins this contract you will need to overnight find 3000 skilled fabricators experienced in this type of work. Do we have many facilities of this capability here in the USA? I know this is the real strong hold of union labor mobility but still I have to wonder how much capability we have to do this work left. I doubt it is anything like what it would have been when we were going full bore on the interstate highway construction.
The other one that I wonder what it takes is making the steel cables for suspension bridges. It wouldn't surprise me if China has an entire mill making nothing but steel cables for suspension bridges. On the other hand where I wouldn't be surprised if China is building 10 or so a year how many suspension bridges in the USA are we re-cabling a year?
One other point that makes me wonder though when I was at Alstom we had hired a guy who came from working a long term contract at the "Chinese Bomb Factory" as he called it. I think the actual name was Harbin Boiler Works, it may have been a different boiler mfg, I can't recall. None the less he said if you don't watch the Chinese on everything they do, especially the heat treatments to stress relieve the parts, and take samples of everything to the met lab, that you are in for real suprises. In his case his company had sent him over to supervise the building of a 32000psi 800MW boiler and he said that it was done right, but he said the Chinese boilers he saw built there were something completely different in terms of quality. (To give you an idea while he was there that one turned out about 10 boilers worth of parts for 300MW and larger boilers, so the economy of scale the Chinese must have on infrastructure projects must be something almost incomprehensible here). None the less especially for a top down society like theirs it blows my mind that back in the 2006-2008 time frame that they were so far lacking in the QC department. When you are spending as much as the Chinese are right now on infrastructure, how much extra does it really cost to do it right? One story I recall specifically was he went out to witness a large superheater header getting thermally stress relieved with heating blankets. The part was over 100ft long, easily over a $1million part and they only had 1 or 2 thermocouples to monitor temperature on the entire part! How much does it really cost to have an adequate amount of them?
Anyhow it is a little off the original topic, none the less I still would think for years to come the Chinese will have a massive advantage on infrastructure construction, but I still can't comprehend how their QC could be so bad, unless I was just hearing a lot of BS which with this guy I doubt.
I will call bs on you for "especially the heat treatments to stress relieve the parts, and take samples of everything to the met lab, that you are in for real suprises. In his case his company had sent him over to supervise the building of a 32000psi 800MW boiler and he said that it was done right," We had to go to superpressure to hit 900PSI, in a Corp that did nothing BUT compressors, boilers, and turbines.
I think you misunderstood, or are lying about 32000 PSI.
I haven't done any of that for over 20 years, but still, bullshit?
"Please, Obama sold the "stimulus" on "shovel ready jobs". But they were NOT shovel ready, and, as Miguels says, the Reps insisted on even MORE tax cuts. People like you, with MILLIONS in after tax income, you would have liked that.
BUT, you are working stiffs, for the most part. You like to pretend that YOU are getting screwed with the tax rates as they are. You are REPUBLICANS, born and raised when you set up your own shop, and became a "bidnessman".
I don't like to dig on you guys. I do like to dig on them POORER ones of you who are TRUE Republicans. You have been fucked for about 30 years, since Reagan came in.
Hell, John WAYNE wrote to Reagan and told him to quit fucking the poor.
Originally Posted by gmatov
Sorry you are right, I accidentally hit an extra 0 it was an approximately 3,200psi supercritical boiler. The supercritical point of water is 3206.2 psia so it could have even been 3,200-3,600psi. The highest in boiler pressure I have ever seen was 5000psi, Eddystone Unit #1 http://files.asme.org/ASMEORG/Commun...marks/1500.pdf. So please accept my apology for hitting one extra 0.
It still doesn't change the fact that the guy was a straight shooter and called things like they were, and I have little doubt that if he was calling the boiler works the "Bomb Factory" things weren't being done properly, even though this was a large respected Chinese boiler firm. Why the Chinese wouldn't straighten their act when building so many large infrastructure projects like this I don't know. Like I said in the scheme of things I don't think the cost of doing things right would be too much extra money.
I just cannot believe that during the biggest recession in 80 years, there is not a single piece of Industrial zoned land available on the water in the entire Bay Area, or up the Sacramento. Or, for that matter, in LA, or Portland, or Seattle.
NO- there is no empty land in all the USA, so of course we have to buy from the Chinese, and, plus- they have their own ships!
BS. I was just talking to a friend of mine a few weeks ago who is a carpenter, and she was building forms for a new bridge earlier this year- They are starting on the new 520 floating bridge across Lake Washington, in metro Seattle, and the bridge is being built in the old Aberdeen Log yard, in Grays Harbor, which is several hundred miles by sea away. Miraculously, Kiewet, which is the same construction company that is building other sections of the Bay Bridge, found a site closer than China to build that bridge, and found evidently non-chinese tugs to haul the bridge.
In one of the articles Adam linked to, there is a revealing sentence-
"California decided not to apply for federal funding for the project because the “Buy America” provisos would probably have required purchasing more expensive steel and fabrication from United States manufacturers."
American Bridge, which is now just a shadow of its former self, is a partner on the Bay Bridge, and is subcontracting to the Chinese. But in their heyday, they actually built bridges in Ambridge Pennsylvania, and shipped them all over the world. Even though they shut down the Ambridge plants in the 80's, that doesnt mean nobody in the USA can build a bridge.
Also- these big projects are almost always design build- which means details are changed, or not even decided, until after the contract is awarded, to suit the particular capabilities of the winning bidder. The exact size and type of steel used could easily have been specced to make it possible to source it domestically. Now, it may be possible that there is not a US producer of the cable- I am not sure about that, but, again, the design can be done to utilize what we make, if you start with that in mind.
For instance, the current incarnation of Bethlehem Wire Rope, in PA., claims it can make up to 7" wire rope still. Certainly it could have been possible to design a bridge using what they can make, rather than requiring something that was only available imported.
Wirerope Works, Inc. - Manufacturer of Bethlehem Wire Rope
I still maintain that this was 100% a money saving decision, and that we could make the decision to source domestically IF we were willing to commit to paying more. Political Will, and nothing more.
Bush's first term in office, his budgets were 2002-2005 for his first term, and then 2006-2010 for his last term.
Originally Posted by gmatov
His first term deficit total was $1,266,416,000, his second term was $2,280,123,000.
Obama's First term, has already totalled a deficit of $4,821,440,000.
In other words, over 8 years, Bush managed to spend less then Obama has in 4, by 26.44%.
Does that make me a racist for stating facts available on the US Government website too?
You do know, compared to GDP, Japan is second only to Zimbabwe when it comes to their governments debt right?
Originally Posted by gmatov
Government Deficit numbers are fact regardless of what a magazine would say.
Budget FY 2013 - Table 1.1 - Summary of Receipts, Outlays, and Surpluses or Deficits (&ndash: 1789–2017
Obama has spent more money then he has, going into 26.4% more debt in 4 years then Bush did in 8 years. Forbes can spin it any way they want, doesn't change the fact Obama is plunging the US into debt at a much greater speed then Bush did.
The majority of growth you attribute is due to Bush legacy budget.
If Bush policies had continued,...at 18% increases we would be at more than double our starting spending rate.
The fact is that spending growth under Obama is lower than any other president...
a very large part of the debt is because of tax cuts and loss of revenue due to the recession.
As a bonus he was left with Medicare D, two wars and crippling tax cuts.
When I lost my job and took a lower paying one I cut spending dramatically...and still increased my debt.
Please pay attention and think things through.