(WACO, Texas) – The Viega Roadshow made a stop on Wednesday, May 17, at Texas State Technical College’s Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology program.
The roadshow, which began in February in Washington state, has already made Texas stops in Arlington, Austin, Dallas, Lubbock, McAllen and San Antonio. The roadshow is scheduled to run through at least October with stops in Arizona.
Viega LLC, a global leader in press technology for plumbing and piping systems, is based in Broomfield, Colorado. It was the second time that the Viega Roadshow had visited the TSTC campus in Waco.
The purpose of the visit was to educate and help the students learn about new products and technology to make work safer, said Doug Miller, Viega’s district sales manager for Texas. Some of the equipment that the students saw and touched included a press tool, copper fittings, PEX tubing, a MegaPress and a ProPress.
Miller said that while a majority of Europe is using press technology, it has been slow to catch on in the United States.
According to Viega’s website, press technology is a way of joining pipe with a metal fitting that is crimped onto the tube or pipe with a special tool. A specialized seal in the fitting prevents leaks. Pressing does not require open flame, heat or solder, which makes it safer in tight spaces and when working around flammable materials.
“This is the direction the industry is moving toward,” Miller said. “If you do not embrace it, you will be left behind.”
Students found the visit interesting and are eager to use the equipment.
Caitlyn Glenn, of Cameron, is an associate degree student in the program.
“It was good getting a crash course on ProPress and MegaPress that I have to learn,” she said.
She chose plumbing because she wanted to do something different than her father and brother who both work in the automotive technology field.
Levi Smith, of San Angelo, also is pursuing an associate degree in the program.
He said the roadshow stop was valuable for him.
“It is interesting to learn from the people that develop the tools and fittings,” Smith said. “It is good to talk to the source.”
Tony Montoya, an instructor in TSTC’s Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology program, said experiences like this can help students when they go into the workplace.
“They can come in with the education and the information about the new leading technology out there,” he said. “Sometimes they end up advising the company owners or the shop manager on how to update their materials or equipment.”
Registration continues for the fall semester. For more information on TSTC, go to tstc.edu.