DIS-TRAN Steel Blog

DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions: A History of Innovation, Expansion and Commitment to the Environment

Posted by Melissa Hines on Jul 6, 2016 11:44:33 AM

America’s strength comes from its connectivity, and the utility industry has grown consistently to keep America connected. Stringent environmental regulations on the industry vary by local, state, and federal jurisdictions, and can make delivering high quality products that are also compliant a challenge. DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions has met that challenge and has been satisfying the overhead needs of the U.S. utility industry since 1965 with our environmentally friendly line of distribution crossarms, ground wire molding, wood transmission arms and assemblies, and the new Ultravex™ composite crossarm.

As the U.S. telecommunications industry began to connect cities and states across the country, the need for safe, sound, and environmentally conscious products to support those utilities arose. Over the past 50 years, the needs of the industry and the environmental requirements levied on it have changed, and through DIS-TRAN’s expansion across the U.S. and new product development, we’ve stayed ahead of these challenges since our humble beginnings.

Joe T. Robison founded DIS-TRAN in 1965 in Alexandria, LA. He first began his business ventures out of the trunk of his car. Working is his father’s hardware store while growing up, Mr. Robison learned the basic principles of building and operating a successful business: Honesty, Integrity, Product Knowledge and Quality Service. Instilling these principles into his company’s culture, his business has expanded into a group of world class companies serving the electric utility and electrical contractor industries.

In the early years, DIS-TRAN’s product line included Douglas fir distribution crossarms. DIS-TRAN supplied these crossarms to local utilities in Louisiana and throughout the southeast. In 1980, DIS-TRAN moved to its’ current location in Pineville, LA and began offering Southern Yellow Pine distribution crossarms.  DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions expanded to a second location in Vancouver, WA in 2006. This new location allowed us to expand our reach into the Pacific Northwest. With a two-coast production facility model, DIS-TRAN is able to deliver with quick lead times and greater efficiency.  Untitled_design_10.jpg

In 2008, we expanded our product offering once again to better serve our customers. We began manufacturing wood transmission products, including x-braces, vee and knee braces, tension braces and double arm assemblies. DIS-TRAN introduced the new patent pending Ultravex™ composite crossarm in early 2016.  This new product has revolutionized the market with its cutting edge design.

With our commitment to the environment, new product development, and expansion across the U.S., DIS-TRAN is the company dedicated to responsibly and innovatively supporting America’s utility growth. DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions’ vision is focused on always serving the high voltage industry by continuously providing for their most important needs. We enjoy relationships today that were established in 1965 and every year thereafter. It is our mission to continue to build on this great history as we move towards the future. Our commitment to excellence has allowed us to grow into a premier manufacturing company serving the utility industry’s overhead needs. Follow DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions on Facebook and LinkedIn to stay informed about all the ways our company is innovating in an environmentally conscious way.

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Tags: utility industry, wood transmission assemblies, crossarms, wood crossarm, composite, composite crossarm

COMPOSITES: A GAME CHANGING INNOVATION FOR UTILITIES

Posted by Melissa Hines on Jun 27, 2016 10:07:44 AM

 

For decades, the utility industry has relied on wood and steel to form the infrastructure that delivers services to customers. While wood and steel have been good choices for many companies, there are new materials emerging that could redefine the industry. Composite materials represent viable alternatives that could shape the future of utility distribution and transmission.

Today, a scientifically engineered material entering the market has the potential to upend wood and steel’s long held dominance within the utility space. Composites represent a new generation of materials and are being hailed as a game-changer for the industry. DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions leads the way in manufacturing composite products that are quickly being adopted for their considerable advantages. Our patent 9546498Ultravex™ composite crossarms showcase why composites are disrupting the utility ecosystem with each deployment.OhC0Oqiest1453762472.jpg

Composites are non-conductive, light, durable and readily installed for recovery efforts from extreme weather events. Their small footprint allows them to be easily transported, making them the most attractive option for use in remote locations with difficult access. Their service life exceeds that of wood counterparts as they are resistant to rot, corrosion, pests and fire, all while offering superior UV protection. The high dielectric strength of composites renders them the safest choice for live-line installations and maintenance, and reduces potential touch and step hazards. Furthermore, composites are proven to be environmentally sustainable since they are made of non-leaching material and contain no soil remediation.

Though the material may seem futuristic, composite transmission poles were first installed in Maui, Hawaii in 1962. These fiber-reinforced structures lasted nearly 45 years, and replaced wood and steel poles that had suffered degradation and corrosion due to the island’s warm, moist and salty air. More recently, the destruction of 60,000 wooden poles by Hurricane Sandy in 2012 revealed the critical problems of aging and overload within the utility infrastructure. As a result, many in the industry are turning to composites as they provide improved reliability during major storm events, leading to reduced power outages and faster service restoration.

Reduced maintenance and associated costs stands out as one of composites’ most attractive features. The surface of composite poles is too slick for woodpeckers and squirrels to grab hold of. This feature decreases expensive, critter-induced outages to virtually zero. Unlike wood, composites do not lose strength as they age, further reducing maintenance. And since they are hollow, copper wiring can be stored inside of poles – and out of sight of potential thieves. 

Several states near the Gulf Coast are in the process of incorporating composites into their utility infrastructure as a way of improving hurricane preparedness and upgrading current services. The Ultravex™ composite crossarm from DIS-TRAN Overhead Solutions makes an excellent addition to a utility’s composite expansion. Our full gallery of premium distribution and transmission products can meet any need. Visit us at www.distranoverheadsolutions.com and let us know how we can assist you. Dowload our UltravexTM loading tables and find out which crossarm will work best for your next project.

 

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD UltravexTM Deadend & Tangent Loading Tables

 

 

Tags: utility industry, utilities, crossarms, fiberglass, composites, composite crossarm

7 Obvious Reasons to Use Wood Distribution and Transmission Structures

Posted by Brooke Barone on Aug 27, 2014 12:17:47 PM

While many say “Out with the old and in with the new,” this might be true for hairstyles, tube socks or shag carpet, but with over 130 million wood utility structures across America that are still in service today, this is simply not the case.

Wood utility structures have an undeniable reputation for being reliable, versatile and cost-effective.Wood distribution and transmission structures remain highly preferred in the utility industry due to their ease of construction, climbability and design flexibility.

Wood Transmission Structures

Reliability Wood transmission structures have higher Basic Insulating Levels (BIL), which can help reduce lightning flashovers, cutting down on power outages.

Cost-effective With economical initial costs and low overall life cycle costs, wood can directly reduce the impact of operating expenses.

Safety Since wood transmission structures have been around for decades, utilities and lineman are very familiar with proper use and handling of the products.

Why use wood transmission structures?

  1. Lower cost
  2. Long and proven service life
  3. Adaptable to many different applications
  4. Easy to handle and store the structures
  5. Natural flexibility providing  high performance under load
  6. Can be easily modified in the field
  7. Can be supplied quickly in times of crisis

trans pic green

The general standards that wood transmission structures must meet include ANSI, RUS, NESC, WCLIB and AWPA. And just like steel, concrete and other materials, there are countless configurations for wood transmission structures. 

Just to name a few, there are:

  • Single Pole with Traditional Crossarms
  • Wishbone Structures
  • Two Pole H-Frame Structures
  • Multi-Pole H-Frame Structures

trans 2 green

When considering which manufacturer to choose, you might want to consider their history in the supply of products in the utility market, the location and number of facilities, in-house design capacity, access to raw materials and available inventory for standard items, especially when time is critical. All of these factors could make or break your recovery response when natural disasters strike.

Dive Deeper Into the Transmission World

 

Tags: utility industry, wood distribution crossarms, wood crossarms, utilities, transmission, wood crossarm, wood transmission structures, wishbone structures, H-Frame structures, wood structures

Structural Detailing and Where It's Heading

Posted by Brooke Barone on Mar 28, 2013 11:18:00 AM

Structural detailing is headed in a new direction, and this time, it’s three dimensional.

Although 3D Modeling isn’t something new, it has taken many years to develop and reach a level that is making it not only practical to use in the industrial environment, but cost efficient and self-checking. The learning curve is steep, but it’s not impossible.

It’s no secret that erectors and fabricators are frustrated with way the steel detailing industry is going, and chalk it up to the generational differences.  It’s pretty much inevitable that there is always going to be a generational gap, especially when you throw technology into the mix.

structural detailing

These technical advances in plant machinery are a major factor in lessening the need for detailers to be as critical with dimensioning as in the past.  Steel detailers are beginning to believe the fabricators do not need dimensions to fabricate the steel if CNC and DXF files are supplied.  Many dimensions, which were supplied in the past, are now left off the drawings.  While it may be true that the fabricator can fabricate the steel without the “old-style” dimensioning, they do however need the dimensions to check the accuracy of the output from the machinery.  Great scrutiny must be taken when using “out-of-the-box” modeling software.

It will take time and training, both in the classroom and on the job, for a person to get proficient with the new technology that is here now and will be coming in the future. But no matter if you’re using a drafting table, Ames Lettering Guide or the best computer and software system out there, the bottom line remains the same: a good profit margin with the least amount of time required and the least amount of mistakes. 3D Modeling can make this happen.

Benefits of 3D Modeling:

1.       Increase efficiency

2.       Reduce errors

3.       Improve schedules

4.       More economical

It’s going to take a couple of years to get things working properly with 3D Modeling, since  3D detailing software was not created specifically for the utility industry.  Some of the biggest obstacles of converting to 3D are the amount of time to get model structures and the lack of standard structures across the utility industry.  Each type of structure will have to be modeled and constrained properly to see significant gains in the output of details.  Unless the utility industry standardizes across the country, the modeling process will be prolonged. 

To get today’s generation excited and interested in this profession, the “wow factor” has to be there. This 3D Modeling is going to pull in a whole new chapter of talented young people who have grown up with computers and video games, and understand the concepts, sometimes better than the older generation. The talent is there, so the next question is how to tap into that pool.

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Tags: utility industry, Structural detailing, 3D Modeling, 3D detailing, detailing, fabricators, plant machinery, modeling software

Wood Structures: Still in the Game or Ancient History?

Posted by Brooke Barone on Jan 18, 2013 3:04:00 PM

While many say “Out with the old and in with the new,” this might be true for hairstyles, tube socks or shag carpet, but with over 130 million wood utility structures across America that are still in service today, this is simply not the case.

Wood utility structures have an undeniable reputation for being reliable, versatile and cost-effective.Wood distribution and transmission structures remain highly preferred in the utility industry due to their ease of construction, climbability and design flexibility.

Wood Transmission Structures

Reliability Wood transmission structures have higher Basic Insulating Levels (BIL), which can help reduce lightning flashovers, cutting down on power outages.

Cost-effective With economical initial costs and low overall life cycle costs, wood can directly reduce the impact of operating expenses.

Safety Since wood transmission structures have been around for decades, utilities and lineman are very familiar with proper use and handling of the products.

Why use wood transmission structures?

  1. Lower cost
  2. Long and proven service life
  3. Adaptable to many different applications
  4. Easy to handle and store the structures
  5. Natural flexibility providing  high performance under load
  6. Can be easily modified in the field
  7. Can be supplied quickly in times of crisis

trans pic green

The general standards that wood transmission structures must meet include ANSI, RUS, NESC, WCLIB and AWPA. And just like steel, concrete and other materials, there are countless configurations for wood transmission structures. 

Just to name a few, there are:

  • Single Pole with Traditional Crossarms
  • Wishbone Structures
  • Two Pole H-Frame Structures
  • Multi-Pole H-Frame Structures

trans 2 green

When considering which manufacturer to choose, you might want to consider their history in the supply of products in the utility market, the location and number of facilities, in-house design capacity, access to raw materials and available inventory for standard items, especially when time is critical. All of these factors could make or break your recovery response when natural disasters strike.

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Tags: utility industry, wood distribution crossarms, wood crossarms, utilities, transmission, wood crossarm, wood transmission structures, wishbone structures, H-Frame structures, wood structures

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