Efficient Plant March 2018 - 16

feature | plant profile

+

A FAMILY BUSINESS
The story of the
Rodriguez family
migrating from Cuba
and building Gulf
Coast Electric Motor
Service Inc. from
scratch is a classic
American Dream.
Read about it at
efficientplantmag.
com/1803profile.

just not ever going to turn down work of any kind.
He would find a way."
The Escambia County (FL) Utility Authority
now has more than 400 pumping stations. In the
1970s there were about 200, with approximately two submersible pumps at each station. Tico
Rodriguez began to build a niche for repairing
them when no one else wanted to handle this type
of "dirty" work.
"When my dad got started, he was out scrambling, beating the bushes, looking for a niche
to drum up business," Rodriguez said. "These
submersible pumps started coming in because he
was the crazy Cuban willing to work on them. The
local shops didn't want any part of it...until they
saw his success in building his business this way.
Then there was some competition with submersible-pump repair."
The company's niche has now become "the
crazy oddball stuff and stuff with challenging leadtime issues," Rodriguez said.

The family company got its start with submersible pumps. This
remains a key part of its business.

16

| EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

CHALLENGING JOBS

Rodriguez recalled tackling a job in which the
2,000-hp vertical synchronous motor for a vertical
turbine was too large to fit on the existing crane in
the motor shop. But this didn't stop the Rodriguez family. "We rented a larger crane and parked
it outside," Victor Rodriguez explained. "Then
we cut a hole in the ceiling. We dropped in the
crane with the motor through the roof opening
and placed it onto the truck to dismantle it. The
local motor shop for this municipality said they
couldn't do it. They reached out to us and we said,
'Sure, send it to us.'"
The motor weighed 22,000 lb., but that wasn't
the issue. It was so tall that once it was put on
the truck, the under-hook height for the existing
crane was inadequate.
On another occasion, the company received
a 50,000-lb. motor that powered a a chemical
plant's compressor. "We had the lifting capacity,
but again, the stator was so tall we couldn't grab
it with our existing hook, so
we cut another hole in the
sheet-metal ceiling," Rodriguez said. "In this case, we
had a door opening that was
16 feet wide by 14 feet tall.
The motor was on the way
here and we were reviewing
the drawings and realized
it would not fit through the
door. So we cut the door
down and then raised the
opening another two feet so
we could back in the trailer.
We did this and cut the hole
in the roof while the motor
was on the way here from
Texas. The repair job itself
was not difficult. It was the
logistics that created the
challenge in this case."
Taking on challenging
jobs is not always by design,
GCEMS is rebuilding a complete motor from a scrap
Rodriguez said. "After we
carcass. It's creative solutions like this that have helped
commit to it, then we have
the company build a specialized niche.

MARCH 2018


http://www.efficientplantmag.com/1803profile http://www.EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Efficient Plant March 2018

Efficient Plant March 2018 - Cover1
Efficient Plant March 2018 - Cover2
Efficient Plant March 2018 - 1
Efficient Plant March 2018 - 2
Efficient Plant March 2018 - 3
Efficient Plant March 2018 - 4
Efficient Plant March 2018 - 5
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Efficient Plant March 2018 - 17
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Efficient Plant March 2018 - 20
Efficient Plant March 2018 - 21
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Efficient Plant March 2018 - 23
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Efficient Plant March 2018 - 25
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Efficient Plant March 2018 - Cover3
Efficient Plant March 2018 - Cover4
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