Vancouver Pumper Juggles Multiple Separate Placing Boom Jobs
Chris Reynolds’ grandfather wakes up everyday and marvels at the current state of concrete pumping technology. “We are a third generation company and when my grandfather started in the business after the war, the company specialized in concrete pre-cast products, residential and eventually commercial concrete placement, “according to Chris. In the late 1960s, the company began replacing power buggies with concrete pumps for concrete placement. It was during this portion of the company’s growth when second generation, Robert Reynolds Jr., became involved with the company and focused on developing the concrete pumping side of the business, including using separate placing booms for high rise construction. Today they are exclusively concrete pumpers and founder Robert Reynolds Sr. is amazed at the “evolution of concrete conveyance” as the company juggles multiple high rise pumping projects in downtown Vancouver each with a slightly different take on the pumping process.
The company bought a KVM 32 XL Schwing truck mounted pump with detachable placing boom for their growing commercial work in 1994. “We had no intention of getting the detach option but it was the next one on the assembly line when we were ready to buy and we took it, which was stroke of good fortune,” explains Reynolds, “We have that boom detached and on a structure and the truck-mounted pump is supplying it today.” Chris Reynolds cut his teeth in the pumping business in the late 1990s. “In 2000, I was lucky to be involved in my first placing boom job on a 25-story office tower using that 32-meter and I quickly became sold on that method of concrete placement.”
That boom and pump combination is just one of four that the company currently has on projects in downtown Vancouver. “After a flurry of separate placing boom activity around 1990 it was quiet until 2000 when I flew my first detachable boom and there haven’t been any until now,” according to Reynolds, “The current jobs are all repeat customers who we are flying a boom for the first time.” He credits the World of Concrete for educating customers to the method. Reynold’s preferred concrete pump manufacturer has had a placing boom as the centerpiece of their two story exhibit at the show for the past several years. Reynolds characterizes the customer who chooses the method as a motivated contractor or owner who wants the efficiencies of the latest technology. Reynolds is supplying that technology on four projects currently under construction within blocks of each other in downtown Vancouver. “Once we got one started the others followed,” he said.
This 43 –story tower will become one of the tallest residential addresses in the downtown area. Concrete contractors Loewen’s Construction Ltd, Abbotsford, B.C. encouraged Reynolds to provide a method of placement that would not obstruct the busy downtown streets surrounding the site. “They wanted the concrete placement to be as automated as possible, “according to Reynolds, “After they saw the separate placing booms at the World of Concrete, they asked about the possibility of using the method.” After consultation with Schwing representatives, Reynolds came up with a placing boom mounting system that works with the self-climbing form system chosen for the job.
Before the 28-meter placing boom could be mounted to the forms, the project needed to proceed to the third parking level which is still five levels below grade. Reynolds owns a fleet of 12 Schwing units from stationary pumps to truck-mounted concrete pumps with placing booms. They used the largest of their truck mounted pumps – a KVM 52 with 158-feet of horizontal reach to quickly place the concrete to the third level. At this point, enough of the superstructure was constructed to mount the self-climbing form system manufactured by EFCO.
Schwing offers many different placing boom mounting options and their cross frame accessory was easily bolted to the climbing form system. A four-meter section of octagonal mast with a universal head section was then bolted to the cross frame giving the 28-meter placing boom the necessary height to clear the forms. “They wanted the placing boom installed as soon as possible,” Reynolds explained, “But at the beginning the core was still five levels below street level and we had never pumped through that much vertical drop. We were a little nervous but we successfully pumped 80-feet straight down the excavation, 50-feet out to the core then up through the core and through the placing boom. They use a small aggregate, very pumpable mix for the slabs and SCC for the verticals and it is going good.”
The 28-meter placing boom is a four-section Roll and Fold design and reaches the entire area from its mounting position on the central core. The boom is the detachable 1994 32-meter (106-feet of vertical reach when mounted on the truck) that the company uses in everyday commercial work and then detaches with four pins for use on high rise projects. It is a high utilization, fuel-efficient pump with the 1200 single circuit pump kit that is rated at 170 cubic yards per hour. The company is making three pours a week on the parking structure and one to two pours a week on a non-typical, commercial auditorium that will extend up to level six averaging 40 cubic meters per hour. When typical floors begin on level seven, the forming contractor will implement a four-day cycle, with pumping on one day of the cycle, until the 43-story building is complete.
The Residences at Georgia
The 82-year old Hotel Georgia in downtown Vancouver has provided lodging to its share of famous people including Nat King Cole, Elvis Presley, Louis Armstrong, Queen Elizabeth II and the Beatles. The 12-story building is undergoing a renovation and prior visitors likely won’t recognize the location as a 48-story high rise is being built adjacent to the historic hotel. The new complex called The Residences at Georgia is located in downtown Vancouver and will offer grand comfort in the spirit of the Hotel it is named after. Luxury condominiums are estimated to cost $1200-$1500 a square foot.
Concrete contractor HP Construction, Abbotsford, B.C., working with Owner and General Contractor Scott Construction Management, Ltd., Vancouver, faced a dilemma common to downtown construction – no place to stage equipment on busy downtown streets hemmed in by adjacent high rise buildings. “To set up a truck-mounted long boom would be too restrictive to traffic,” Reynolds explained, “And the job was so big we couldn’t reach it all from one location so we started kicking around the idea of a placing boom with a more project friendly line pump.”
The group determined that a centrally located placing boom with 35-meters of reach could service 90-percent of the project and Reynolds’ fleet included a KVM 39X truck-mounted concrete pump with detachable boom. “Now we just had to find a way to mount the boom in the middle of the empty site.”
One of the features of the octagonal mast system is its ability to free-stand at heights up to 70-feet, depending on boom size. After consulting with Schwing, the pumper poured a foundation block to support the mast and placing boom. “We poured the foundation block on a Tuesday afternoon, flew the octagonal mast and power pack and half of the pipeline system on Wednesday, the other half of the pipeline and the placing boom on Thursday and by the afternoon we were pumping concrete. All of this was accomplished knowing that on Friday we had to pour an 800 cubic meter core footing,” according to Reynolds. The four-section placing boom with 35-meters of horizontal reach and Roll and Fold design has the lowest weight to reach ratio in its class at 12,890 pounds.
Schwing’s octagonal mast sections, available in four-meter or six-meter lengths, bolt together to allow flexibility in assembling a mast, “The modular nature of the octagonal mast concept also makes it easier to transport and store mast sections, “ commented Reynolds. At The Georgia project, two six-meter sections were used and with the universal head attachment provided approximately forty-feet of height to pour the foundations in the excavation. The detachable boom which provides 35-meters of horizontal reach is able to cover the majority of the project. Workers attach system to the boom end to pour the corners of the footprint. “In less than a week, we went from an idea to a system that pumped an 800 cubic meter footing,” stated Reynolds.
As the below grade parking structure progressed with the free-standing boom, after the fourth suspended slab, the mast was unbolted from the cross frame and transitioned into floor frames placed in 41” square cut-outs. Two frames on separate levels are used to wedge and pin the boom. When the tower rises, and the floor plan narrows, the 35-meter boom will be replaced with a 28-meter at which time the company plans on using Schwing’s self-climbing feature to raise the boom and mast combination to save crane time and labor.
The pump on this project is the truck-mounted unit that is also the carrier for the 39-meter boom. It is equipped with Schwing’s fuel-efficient 2023-5 pump-kit rated at 208 cubic yards per hour. “This is the most sought-after pump in our fleet because we can use it on commercial work with the high volume pumpkit and 127-foot reach,” explains Reynolds, “The fact that the boom detaches so easily for high rise work is an added value.”
In another application of a self-climbing form system with separate placing boom, Reynolds is pumping Patina, a downtown 42-story tower that will have 256 luxury condos when completed in early 2011. “Another contractor pumped the structure up to Level 5 but didn’t have the expertise or the equipment to pump it out so we will take it to the top,” explained Reynolds. General Contractors BOSA Properties, Burnaby, B.C. is self-performing the concrete work using a PERI climbing form system.
“The Peri system was engineered and built ready to receive the Schwing octagonal mast made up of two, six-meter sections bolted together. We flew the mast and dropped it into the center of the form and pinned it. Our 28-meter separate placing boom is riding on top of the mast and reaching all areas of the floor plates,” Reynolds explained.
The pumper is using a Schwing SP 2000 stationary pump rated at 118 cubic yards per hour which is able to keep up with the output requirements of the job. The unit has a 180 hp engine and can be switched from high volume to high pressure to meet the demands of pumping at the upper levels.
A fourth project is in the works that will pair Reynolds up with concrete contractors HP Construction who is working on the Residences at Georgia. “Based on the success of the free-standing mast with 35-meter placing boom at Georgia, the customer wouldn’t do it any other way,” according to Reynolds, “We’ll recreate that placing system right down to changing the 35-meter placing boom for a 28-meter as this new job progresses.”
Reynolds credits the versatility of the modular octagonal mast system and the universal mounting capability for all Schwing separate placing booms as one reason the company is able to efficiently juggle so many projects. Reynolds is glad his company embarked on the separate placing boom concept, “It’s amazing when you get a good placing system established the customers recognize it and take full advantage of it.” And no one is more amazed than company founder Robert Reynolds Senior.
1. Project: Capitol Residences, Vancouver B.C.
Owner/general Contractor: Wall Financial Corp., Vancouver, B.C.
Architect: Howard Bingham Hall, Vancouver B.C.
Concrete Contractor: Loewen’s Construction Ltd, Abbotsford, B.C.
Pumping Contractor: Reynolds Bros Concrete Ltd New Westminster, BC
Equipment: Schwing KVM 52 truck-mounted concrete pump with placing boom, Schwing KVM 32 XL truck-mounted concrete pump with detachable placing boom, Schwing octagonal mast system
2. Project: The Residences at Georgia
Owner: Delta Group, Vancouver B.C. and Goodman Real Estate, Seattle, WA
General Contractor: Scott Construction Management Ltd., Vancouver
Architect: Endall Elliot Associates, Vancouver, B.C.
Concrete Construction: HP Construction, Abbotsford, B.C
Concrete Pumper: Reynolds Bros Concrete Ltd New Westminster, BC
Equipment: Schwing KVM 39 X truck-mounted concrete pumping with detachable placing boom, Schwing octagonal mast system
3. Project: Patina
Owner: Concert Properties Ltd. Vancouver
General /Concrete Contractor: BOSA Properties, Burnaby, B.C
Architect: Endall Elliot Associates, Vancouver B.C.