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Monday, November 9, 2015

Shrink Sleeves on top of Powercrete

Powercrete with a Shrink Sleeve on top

     We've all seen him....that old man walking around who is wearing a belt around his waist and also wearing suspenders.  Is it a fashion statement?  Did he forget he had the belt on when he put the suspenders?  Were they both gifts from his grandkids and he just wants to remember them and honor their gift?  Does he get frustrated with himself every time he goes to the bathroom?  I think like many things, the obvious answer is the correct one:  he really, really, really doesn't want his pants to fall down!  I don't blame him!  I think we've all had those kind of dreams/nightmares and those are not fun.  So a DIRAX shrink sleeve installed on top of Powercrete?  I've seen it done many times and I can say from direct conversations I've had with the people doing it:  they really want to make sure that their field joints are properly protected on those directional drilling applications!

     Most everyone in the industry understands the strengths of the Powercrete plant applied abrasion resistant overcoat.  Installed on top of the fusion bonded epoxy, plant applied Powercrete has many years of successful pull throughs where FBE has emerged unscathed in spite of whatever it encountered underground.

     In addition, most in the industry are aware of many of the strengths of two part epoxies as field joint coatings on road bore applications.  With excellent Shore D hardness; abrasion resistance and cathodic disbondment resistance - there is a lot to offer there (which are many of the same reasons that our DIRAX is installed on top of a two part epoxy of some kind in ever situation - most commonly our S1301M epoxy).

     I think many would also agree that DIRAX also has some tremendous characteristics that are perfectly suited to road bore applications.  Just a few of these are:  electrical resistivity; penetration resistance, abrasion resistance, peel resistance and shear resistance.  It also has a proven track record that goes back for decades.

     So why use both?  First of all, I have to say...hundreds of thousands of installations have proven that using Powercrete underneath a DIRAX sleeve is not necessary.  DIRAX has an excellent track record all on its own; using the Covalence S1301M epoxy primer as the bonding agent there.  But; using the DIRAX on top does actually improve the performance of the Powercrete --- or at least the installation.
     Worried about getting the proper coating thickness?  Toss a DIRAX on top of the Powercrete and you'll now exceed any coating requirement.  Worried about the amount of labor required to continue to work that Powercrete to achieve uniform thickness and avoid icicles?  Throw a DIRAX on there and let the DIRAX do that work for you.  Worried about micro corrosion at a microscopic level where maybe the peaks and valleys of the anchor pattern aren't quite being filled?  Throw a DIRAX on there - no water / no oxygen - means that even if you have a holiday show up through a fish eye late during the installation; the DIRAX is going to be there to cover your back. 

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