Joined on April 19, 2005
Last Post on March 3, 2013
@ March 3, 2013 12:51 PM in 2013 Long Island BIG UGLY....who's in?????It was a great mix of friends..the conversations were enriching....the drink flowed like Irish Buttermilk...the food was tasty..especially the Seafood Chowder. There was a Country music concert at The Garden. The place filled up with cowboy hats and boots...it was quite interesting..... "City" folk with Country hearts. It was a really nice time...perfect start and finish.....Ron Jr . and a few were still partyin when I left. Wanna make this a yearly gathering...stay tuned for Next March's Big Ugly 2014. Thank you all for coming. Mad Dog
@ March 2, 2013 10:36 AM in 2013 Long Island BIG UGLY....who's in?????Was looking foward to hangin with ya.....business first! Mad Dog
@ March 1, 2013 6:49 AM in One for the plumbersProtein from urine...yes..it is like concrete. You can spend hours messing around with snakes and chemicals which can be nasty dangerous. If I cant get it with a snake after 15 minutes now...its direct replacement. It takes years to get THAT clogged. Mad Dog
@ February 28, 2013 5:18 AM in Heating a MudroomUnder a nice brown tile with brown grout...its great in the snow.....dries floor and boots/gloves in a few hours. Depends how much room you have...how much DESTRUCTION you want to do...is it altready finished? How about a few pics? Mad Dog
@ February 24, 2013 7:02 PM in 2013 Long Island BIG UGLY....who's in?????Everyone who calls me to "check in" are VERY excited, including the Big Guy from Rhode Island. The only downer for me is that Holohan won't be there. We'll hoist a few pints fer ya! Mad Dog
@ February 24, 2013 7:00 PM in Off-topic: wall-hung toiletsYou could go with a carrier-type, but that is overkill for residential...the only room u will save with a wall mounted on a carrier is the footprint, but what are you gonna do with that space? Most bowl manufacturers make back outlet bowls that mount on the floor and discharge thru the back...just make sure you use a felt or rubber gasket, wax alone will not always work. Mad Dog
@ February 23, 2013 2:30 PM in 2013 Long Island BIG UGLY....who's in?????Billy Gluckin and Bob Chapman of Comfort zone sales have "checked in" to let me know they are definites....1 week from today!!!!! Mad Dog
@ February 21, 2013 5:46 PM in Need Solar Science Project Idea for eigth grader........Hey Wallies. Matt jr. and I need to come up with a reasonably sophisticated solar demo/experiment...PRETTY fast!!! Help!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Mad Dog
@ February 21, 2013 5:42 PM in Need Solar Science Project Idea for eigth grader........Mad Dog
@ February 21, 2013 5:40 PM in Need Solar Science Project Idea for eigth grader........Dynomite! Mad Dog gonna check it out
@ February 21, 2013 5:05 PM in 2013 Long Island BIG UGLY....who's in?????they are expecting us. Looking foward to getting together. any lurkers on the fence.? Mad Dog
@ February 21, 2013 4:18 PM in Need Solar Science Project Idea for eigth grader........Hey you"ll. My boy Matt Jr. and I want to build some demonstration model for experimentation to showcase solar energy. My gut is to do something with Solar Thermal but I think PV might be simpler. We don't have a lot of time either. Any suggestions? Perhaps their are kits that we could buy on the web? Thanking you in advance. Mad Dog
@ February 18, 2013 8:39 PM in garden hose for gas lineYour work is Beautiful. I think he was just venting. Not knowing the Language can be a problem on the construction site though. Keep up the nice work. Mad Dog
@ February 17, 2013 9:16 AM in garden hose for gas lineI am "your-home-is-your-castle" guy like the rest of us. However, Plumbing, heating and fuel gas codes were developed for GOOD reason..."To protect the HEATH" (and safety) of the General Public. Just because your house is detached does not preclude you from causing harm to your neighbors. On Long Island and much of the Greater New York area, homes are close to eachother. The recent 110 home loss is Breezy Point is a perfect example. A fire that started in one house spread to all the others. Also within the last year there was a gas explosion in a house, caused by unlicensed, Unprofessional gas work. It did damage to neighboring houses. How about the first responders who could be hurt when these non-professionals do their thing? Working on heating equipment - especially - requires years of training, seminars, reading, and experience....do you think most "handy" guys are qualified to do this? Will they do a combustion analysis? Draft test? be able to adjust fuel-air ratio? Mad Dog
@ February 16, 2013 7:41 AM in garden hose for gas lineFirst of all: Beautiful work! I would let you work in my house. However, you, my friend are the RARE exception to the rule. Also, lets be fair to the Plumbing/heating contractors, when you're doing this in your own house, it is a labor of love and source of pride, so we (me included) all tend to go overboard. When you are doing a boiler or worse yet, an oil-to-gas conversion per day, you cannot do such pretty work and pay the bills...ask me how I know......In my 27 years in the biz, I have seen FAR more shoddy/dangerous work by homeowners and general contractors (who feel entitled to do our work because they can buy the materials at the big box stores.) Yes, seen a few too many licensed contractors who do not properly train and supervise their men: THIS is usually the case in these instances. When I had my business, if it wasn't up to snuff it got ripped out and done over. If it weren't for PVC and flexible piping, VERY, VERY few people would buy or event rent a Ridgid 300 machine or a cast iron snap cutter. Change is inevitable: when Pex came out, I was skeptical, but you learn when and where to use it. Am I "old School" a :throwback,? YES! But I do embrace the certain things that cannot be denied: Pex, Mod Cons, et cetera. Once again, awesome job, but YOU are the RARE exception, not the rule. With great respect, Mad Dog
@ February 16, 2013 7:26 AM in What business lessons did you learn from the Great Recession?For what its worth after 12 years in business...................
1) Finances: Don't carry ANY debt at all (or atleast VERY little). At a BARE minimum, have a basic business plan in place and adhere to it closely.. If you are a small shop as I was, Get atleast part time office help...a gal friday. I used Pam Humbert and she kept me out of all kinds of trouble...fiscal, taxes, scheduling, et cetera. It allows you to do what you do best!
2) Employees:....don't give away the store! When things slow up, don't be afraid to "trim the herd." I know...."...but he's my best guy, I don't wanna lose him." That's one of the things that got me in hot water, i.e., Having the employees work in your house or shovel snow, paint, paying their health insurance on credit card just to keep them et cetera...just to "keep them busy" while its slow. Gets slow, CUT EM LOOSE. Also, don't go overboard
with them. Start them out with a fair package and let raises and that be based upon MERIT, NOT time schedules or yearly reviews per se. I gave it all away in the beginning to attract employees, but you have to have room to go from there. They come to expect it. Also, don't hire friends or become too friendly with them. They get to know too much about your business and then "assume" they are some sort of partners. Treat them well and fair, but always keep a few "carrots" out of view.
3) Customers: As Robert O'Brien said, "find your niche." Mine was The Steam. But be careful, some people assume thats ALL you do. I did ALOT of Radiant and some snowmelt, even a little solar, but people would still ask.." do you do such and such?" You need to let them know your full range of talents. Thats where a good website comes in. If you do the right thing, you will develop a loyal following, cherish these folks, nurture them, be there on Christmas eve for a No-hEAT, give them some breaks a freebie once in awhile....they'll love it and they EXPECT it! Also, here, don't give away the store. For the first 8 years, I gave EVERYONE the best, USA ONLY, Apollo ball valves et cetera, painted pipes, polished copper, extra supports, (kindorf) commercial-quality work, twin l.w.c.os, extra valves, 2 year warrantys, on a few occasions, I replaced Boilers that were 4 and 5 years old that had manufacturers defects....FREE labor because I "felt bad" for the people...DON'T do this!!!!!! It will send you to the poor house. I even went back 10 years later on a leak - no charge! Don't do THIS! Treat em like Gold, but don't be a fool either.
Good luck, Mad Dog
@ February 13, 2013 5:11 AM in garden hose for gas linethere were STILL a few supply houses in NYC that would NOT sell ANYTHING to ANYONE who was not asn employee of a Licensed Master plumber or legit heat outfit. Home Depot and PVC pipe, flex supplieset cetera have made plumbers of EVERYONE. Its a free for all out there...and the public suffers. Mad Dog
@ February 13, 2013 5:06 AM in Early 1900s vapor vacuum system knowledge?Very few who REALLY know Vapor....but you will find them here. Mad Dog
@ February 13, 2013 5:03 AM in 2013 Long Island BIG UGLY....who's in?????you got it! Mad Dog
@ February 13, 2013 5:00 AM in 2013 Long Island BIG UGLY....who's in?????Met Steven Kay and Mikey B as a result of my plea for donations for The Rockaways, especially Far Rockaway, during Hurricane Sandy. Far Rockaway is the VERY poor section of the Rockaway Peninsula that was the LAST to get help. Mikey B loaded my van up with Supplies he had personally donated and Steven spent a whole weekend down there..walking the streets ing whoever needed anything. THAT! is an outstanding human being! Mad Dog
@ February 11, 2013 4:56 AM in 2013 Long Island BIG UGLY....who's in?????and a cool guy. Look up 9-10 threads from the bottom. Molly Wee Pub Mad Dog
@ February 10, 2013 12:17 PM in garden hose for gas lineInstalls. Mad Dog