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  1. #66
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    50
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    What amazes me,we had a new owner take over a large medical facility recently,and called my "controls" co to come take a look at it.Come to find out the original pneumatics,though somewhat neglected,was still in place and operational.First the co sends three office types to look at what they know nothing about,of course it includes lunch.The owner states he wants some options,so the next day no less than 8 people show up from our office to do a partial {ballpark}takeoff.Days later they end up quoting the poor guy just under a mill to rip out all his stuff and go ddc.They didnt get the bid,but youve got to ask how in the world mgt can not listen to a customer,not use the option of pneumatics they sell,paintbrush a bid then take the loss on maybe 100 or more hours of shop time by the sales and eng staff.Sound familiar?

  2. #67
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Posts
    9,564
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    Well, how about spending inordinate amounts of time going through pneumatics "putting it back" to original, or getting hung up replacing alot of components because of lack of care when at that time it may have been more beneficial to go DDC.

    Works both ways. Just a matter of doing your job and using some discernment. Easy to get either the modernization bug on DDC or overly nostalgic about pneumatics. A wrong decision is simply wrong.

  3. #68
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    50
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    But the field people in these branches support the office staff and thier dicisions.I think the function of a good salesman is to present all the options,then let the customer decide.These so called"specialists" and sales reps have little system knowledge compared to the experienced service fitter,but they will be the first to tell you that doesnt matter,money does.

  4. #69
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Posts
    9,564
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    They are right about the money. The property owner sees it like this:

    Is my money better in the bank or for repairs/replace?
    Am I better off (cash flow/payback/accounting advantage/energy) to replace or fix? (note replace may be more expensive than fix but it doesn't matter overall)
    Make decision. Decision may be do nothing, fix, or replace.

    ....and it's different every time.

    Anyway, what I'm saying is your sales staff may not be technically competant... but they may understand money really well. It's about the money.

  5. #70
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    1,389
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    Quote Originally Posted by Control Man View Post
    Ran across some old HONEYWELL controllers you might remember

    HONEYWELL MD7900 A1K3 Electric Control System big old grey box 8 knobs and vacumn tubes sharing an outdoor air sensor for 4 controllers controlling 4 large supply valves. It still WORKS but being 40 years old they want it updated.
    Boss was cleaning up the attic here in our office, found this gem. It's headed to a children's museum.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  6. #71
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    503
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    I also started out on pneumatics controls and then into ddc controls. I still prefer pneumatic actuators because of their power and ease of replacement. I'm so glad I came from the era of pneumatics because I had a chance to actually see the components that are now software processes like low/high limits. averaging relays, reverse volume reset controllers etc... I do remember some of the control cabinets not be for the feint of heart. Nothing like a whole wall of receiver controllers, relays, adaptors, time clocks, day night set back, reversing relays, fire alarm override modes, shunts, etc.... Then of course the question was always just tell me which knob to turn to get it working again!!!!!!!!
    Law Of The Thermostat: He who has the thermostat wins!!!!!

  7. #72
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    280
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    my all time favorite was the pneumatic "Square Root Extractor"

  8. #73
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    chicago
    Posts
    53
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    yea the sqrt extractor, l o l , was likely the peak for pneum days, suckers were expensive to run tho, like 400 scim. !

  9. #74
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    461
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    My ex was direct acting with a narrow proportional band
    Last edited by lonboy; 07-25-2015 at 12:31 AM. Reason: Spelling

  10. #75
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    7,861
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    Wow, can't believe this post is still going on. Have not read the last few pages but here is what I still know since 2005 when this post started.

    I still have a lot of building with the original pneumatic controls in them and working just fine. Replacement parts are still easy to obtain in 99% of the cases. Air does not care what manufacture name is on them. It just wants to pass.....

    Comparing Pneumatics to DDC is impossible because of the business frame work under which they are promoted...side stepping any technical talk. Pneumatics, once installed, take maintenance, some repair, some replacement. It's that simple.

    DDC is promoted/sold as the elixir for all good in controls but things like misapplication (compared to pneumatics it's much more in my experience cause most of the designers/techs/sales people don't even know how the HVAC systems work), software glitches, misunderstanding of what the controls can actually do(as they are sold as being able to any & all things) AND the inevitable costly yearly or so software updates ~~~~ plus the fact that most of not all the time the purchasing customer purchases the hardware but does not & can not purchase the software, well the customer is in for a surprise when they realize that they just married this control manufacturer/contractor without knowing it.

    I have a large expensive condo high rise switching over to DDC's now and the general manager/facilities manager asked me my opinion considering I have done work on this property for over 10 years...so I asked them to ask the DDC contractor for a future cost estimate AND a cost of future software upgrades along with some history of some of their other customers cost history.

    Not a word yet. Silent. But the condo board, most being the new younger "high tech" folks in the "high tech field" are going forth with this conversion. Full steam ahead said the captain of the condo board that could be the Titanic is the way I see it. But something but find out the true costs first cause they are going to be "married" the is label for years to come.

    They said they would, if they could, save all the pneumatics for me. If they don't scrap their compressors I'll probably put some of the machine room pneumatics back into work again.
    "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers it can bribe the public with the public's own money.
    - Alexis de Toqueville, 1835

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