Blockmakers® Workshops Calendar


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ALL CLASSES ARE OFFERED ON AN "ON-DEMAND" BASED UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

For more information, contact Barb the WCCT Secretary, at szczesnb@alpenacc.edu.


5-Day Workshops

Concrete Masonry Technology:
Sept. 8-12, 2014
Dec. 1-5, 2014
Offered On Demand
See Online Equivalent
Concrete Masonry Technology covers material grading and blending, cementitious material, lightweight aggregates, design mix development, admixes, pigments and the producing and curing of concrete masonry units. Concrete masonry specifications and the multiple uses of products are covered. Course presentations are directed toward the material suppliers and the producers of concrete masonry units. Students are encouraged to bring samples of their own aggregates to test after class.

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Vibrapac®:
Sept. 15-19, 2014
Dec. 8-12, 2014
Offered On Demand

See Online Equivalent
The Vibrapac concrete products machine course is a hands-on study of the proper machine adjustments, electronics and electrical schematic print reading of the V3 Vibrapac concrete products machines. Students are given troubleshooting problems as a practical application of these topics.

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Advanced Vibrapac®:
Offered On Demand
The Advanced Vibrapac course provides more extensive hands-on work for practical application in concrete products production, both mechanical and electrical. Students are required to adjust a concrete products machine to low height and to manufacture concrete products in class. Electrical sessions cover Allen-Bradley programmable controllers. Greater concentration is applied to schematic print reading and ladder logic diagnosis. Before attending this course, students must complete the Vibrapac course.

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Electronic Controls:
Offered On Demand
See Online Equivalent: SLC 500 Basics
The Electronic Controls course includes an in-depth study of electrical wiring and programmable logic controllers. Applications and troubleshooting for Allen-Bradley programmable controllers are studied. Practical applications and troubleshooting will be covered on concrete products machines, Multi-Spade Besser-Matic® loader/unloaders and cubers.

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Product Handling:
Oct. 13-17, 2014
Offered On Demand
Online Equivalent: Fundamentals of Hydraulic Systems, Electronic Fundamentals and Troubleshooting
The Product Handling course covers adjustments, schematic print reading and solid state circuitry of
E-Model and Multi-Spade Besser-Matic® loader/unloaders, LSC and PTS handling systems and cubers. Troubleshooting and practical applications are covered on all concrete products handling equipment.

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Equipment Controls:
Online Equivalent: Fundamentals of Hydraulic Systems, Electronic Fundamentals and Troubleshooting
The Equipment Controls course is an advanced, in-depth study of electrical wiring, solid state circuitry, hydraulic controls and preventive maintenance of Vibrapac® concrete products machines, Multi-Spade Besser-Matic® loader/unloaders and cubers. Before attending this course, students must complete the Vibrapac and Product Handling courses.

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3-Day Workshops

Besser/Lithibar Cuber Training:
Offered On Demand

This class will focus on mechanical, electrical and hydraulic systems on automatic and semi-automatic cubers. Students will be exposed to terminology, proportional valves, speed analysis and cube codes. RAD software, tier patterns, sensor location and functions will also be covered. Logic reading and programming using schematics with a hands-on approach will benefit all levels of education.

Executive Session:
Aug. 19-21, 2014
Offered On Demand
The Executive Session is a condensed version of the Concrete Masonry Technology and Vibrapac® Blockmakers Workshops® tailored to upper management. New products, programs and current issues are also discussed in a round-table format with industry executives and professionals.

Recycled Materials - NEW COURSE
October 21-23, 2014
Offered On Demand
In this class students will be introduced to recycled materials such as flyash, slag, glass, concrete debris, etc. Topics will also include the availability of recycled materials and how they can be used both effectively and economically in our concrete mix designed to achieve desired results.  The class will cover pertinent ASTM specifications for recycled materials and positives / negatives associates with their use.  This class will include group participation, mix design examples and is well suited as an introductory class into recycled materials.

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2-Day Workshops

SmartPac Vibrators:
Offered On Demand
SmartPac Programmable Vibrators is an in-depth study of the system, including a complete hands-on teardown and rebuilding of the shafts and components.

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ONLINE Workshops

All classes are 8 weeks long and non-credit unless noted otherwise.

Admixtures for Concrete:
Offered On Demand

Examines the nature of concrete and how its characteristics can be altered through the use of admixtures. The effects of both chemical and mineral admixtures to Portland Cement are studied.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Aggregate Basics:
Offered On Demand

The purpose and function of fine aggregate (sand) and coarse aggregate (gravels, crushed stone, etc.) and their relationship in the construction industry are examined. Both natural and manufactured lightweight aggregates are studied.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Basic Concrete Mix Proportioning:
Offered On Demand
Covers several theories of proportioning concrete mixes, including normal weight, lightweight, high strength and others. Emphasis is given to the effect of altering mix ingredients and proportions on the properties of plastic and hardened concrete.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Concrete Masonry Molds:
Offered On Demand

This four-week course will cover mold parts, torque requirements, and appropriate procedures for disassembly and reassembling a mold attachment.  Also covered will be standard vibrator shaft assembly and a how-to video on techniques used in the field to assist personnel working on molds used in the concrete masonry industry. 

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Concrete Masonry Technology Online:
Offered On Demand

This course covers material grading and blending, cementitious material, lightweight aggregates, design mix development by weight and absolute volume, admixes, pigments and the producing and curing of concrete masonry units. Concrete masonry specifications and the multiple uses of products are also covered.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Concrete Sustainability and LEED:
Offered On Demand

Students will learn what makes buildings green and how concrete fits into sustainable development systems. They will learn how to present the case for concrete to architects, engineers and professionals to promote concrete as a green building solution. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Rating System is explained in detail. Students will learn how concrete can contribute to earning LEED credits and what concrete suppliers need to know and document about their own products for LEED projects.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Electronic Fundamentals and Troubleshooting:
Offered On Demand

Course exposes students to a general overview of electronic circuits, key components and basic troubleshooting techniques. Students interested in basic components such as resistors, capacitors, inductors, diodes, transistors and how these components operate in series-parallel AC and DC circuits will benefit from this course.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Fundamentals of Concrete:
Offered On Demand

(10 weeks) This course covers the fundamentals of slump concrete, including terminology, mix ingredients and both fresh and hardened properties. Students will benefit from learning the fundamentals of concrete along with how various properties are affected.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Hydraulic Fundamentals and Troubleshooting:
Offered On Demand

Learners will become familiar with such common hydraulic components as accumulators, control valves, cylinders, directional valves, filters, geroters, motors and reservoirs to name a few. Schematic diagrams for various hydraulic systems and how they operate while troubleshooting will also be taught.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Introduction to Cementitious Materials:
Offered On Demand

This course examines the chemical and physical properties of various cementitious materials such as hydraulic cements, slag cement, fly ash, silica fume and others. How each performs in concrete and concrete products will be covered.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Introduction to Concrete Technology:
Offered On Demand

(9 weeks)
Introduces the various divisions of the concrete industry. Course reviews each division (Ready Mixed Concrete, Concrete Masonry, Prestress/Precast, Engineering, etc.) and shows the types and needs of employment in each division. (1 credit hour)

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Introduction to Plant Safety:
Offered On Demand

Class will explore all safety aspects of the concrete masonry industry and other industrial settings. This course is designed to inform the employee on safety issues that they may encounter during their employment.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Optimizing Concrete Mixes:
Offered On Demand

Course covers procedures to optimize concrete mixes for performance as well as cost. Through example problems students will cover areas such as overdesign, specialty mixes, secondary cementitious materials and other procedures used to review concrete mixtures for optimal performance.

Students enrolling in this course should have a working knowledge of standard practices for development of concrete mix proportioning as determined Absolute Volume Method. It is suggested that students should review Chapter 9 of the PCA book, "Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures", complete the online course offered by the WCCT entitled "Basic Concrete Mix Proportioning", or review ACI 211.1 "Standard Practices for Selecting Proportions for Normal, Heavyweight and Mass Concrete" to gain a better understanding of mix proportioning procedures before this course starts.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Reading Precast Concrete Shop Drawings:
Offered On Demand

This course covers the reading of shop drawings prepared by a precast concrete producer for production staff. Students will study how prints are organized, symbols used along with how to translate a drawing to the shop floor for inspection.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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SLC-500 Basics:
Offered On Demand
Class will take an in-depth look at the fundamentals of hard wiring in PLC control circuits and the symbolism used. Near the end of the 8 weeks, the class will work with ladder logic and utilize the most informative web sites on the Internet.

Required Supplies:

  • Calculator: (Texas Instruments - TI-30 XA)
  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Self-Consolidating Concrete (SCC):
Offered On Demand
This course covers the topic of Self-Consolidating Concrete (SCC) from a Ready Mix Concrete perspective. Fundamentals of SCC theology, properties, test methods and mix proportioning are covered. Detailed guidelines on laboratory test mix protocols and production and placement checklists are provided. Students will benefit from understanding the reasons why some SCC mixes are successful and others not, how new SCC ASTM test methods are applied and interpreted, and why step-by-step attention to detail pays off at the plant and at the job site.

Required Supplies:

  • Reference Material: ACI 237R-07 Self-Consolidating Concrete
  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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Vibrapac: Mechanical Adjustments:
Offered On Demand

Deals with proper machine adjustments for large, high production block machines. Students are given troubleshooting problems as practical application to the proper machine adjustments.

Required Supplies:

  • PC or Mac
  • Broadband Internet Connection
  • Software and knowledge of computer applications for word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail and sending/receiving attachments

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750 Woodward Avenue, Alpena, MI 49707
Phone: 989-358-7359
Fax: 989-358-7562
wcct@alpenacc.edu