Archive for the month “August, 2012”

IAEC Boat Cruise

Last Thurs night, the NY chapter of the International Association of Elevator Consultants hosted their annual cruise around Manhattan for the benefit of the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation.

Dustin Witham, Lauren Witham, Doug Witham, Ed DeFilippis of KONE

What a beautiful night – the weather was perfect, the water was flat, the food was excellent, the music lively, and the liquid refreshments flowed freely. It was especially fun for me this year because my wife Teresa, son Dustin, (Mid West Elevator in St Louis) and daughter-in-law Lauren, (carrying my next granddaughter) were able to come and join. Read more…


It Take All Kinds

This ad was forwarded to me by Tom Sybert at CJ Anderson. I was flabbergasted. Can you imagine a seller calling a ROPE BRAKE a ROPE BREAK? Insanity.

A rope BREAK is exactly what you would never want.

So beware of goofy products out there. This one doesn’t even pretend to have any approvals – and it claims you can install this rope BREAK in 10 mins! What?

Most of the time having competitors that aren’t very smart is a bad thing. Sometimes it’s dangerous. Sometimes it’s flat out entertaining. ROPE BREAK indeed.

Do The Right Thing

Do The Right Thing

In any industry, there is a group of good guys who live by the ‘do the right thing’ motto. I just ran across one from outside the elevator world who did just that, I and just want to give him some credit – and if by some chance he benefits, well –  he deserves it.

The guy is Dave Bender and he is Captain of the Jenny Lee – a  44 foot fishing boat out of Brielle NJ.

Here’s the story. A group of elevator types have gone tuna fishing on the Jenny Lee for several years now. It is a very nice trip – we run some 90 to 130 miles offshore from New Jersey. It’s a two day deal with one night spent at sea. Over the years we have had a ball, and absolutely loaded our freezers with fresh sashimi.

We were set to go last weekend. Bob & Mike from Canton Elevator, Rick from Kencore, and Dustin from Mid West Elevator. On Weds, Captain Dave called me to say that the fishing stinks – no fish to be caught – and recommending that we postpone / delay / cancel the trip. Well, he didn’t have to do that – and I don’t think everyone would. He could have taken us out – taken our money – taken advantage of us –  knowing  that the probability of success was really low – but he didn’t. Dave Bender recommended we not go.

Upshot – Dave Bender is the kind of guy you like to do business with. If you should ever be in the NY area and think about sport fishing, get ahold of Capt Dave – and tell him you heard about him from the elevator guys.

Oh, Canada

As of October 1, 2012, GAL Canada and ECI Canada will be merging into one company – GAL Canada.

I spent most of last week up in Canukville – Canada – Got a chance to catch up with my good friend and GAL Canadian VP – Steve Husband. We called on customers and snuck in a round of golf with Mark Braden and Mike Alcott – neither are customers but they are both icons in the Canadian elevator industry. Also broke bread with Andy Reistetter and his boys – Andy is the chief Arbitrator / negotiator/ bottle washer at NEEA, and the boys are both mod mechanics at Trident Elevator – one of the best contracting businesses in North America – what a good elevator family. We had a fun night telling stories. Read more…

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