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Bicycles and Heating History

HeatingHelpHeatingHelp Posts: 345
edited October 14 in THE MAIN WALL

Bicycles and Heating History

There was once a time when the plumbing and heating industry was threatened by bicycles. In this episode, Dan Holohan tells the story of how this new and exciting invention was banned from business.

Read the full story here


  • RayWohlfarthRayWohlfarth Member Posts: 849
    Really enjoyed this one. Thanks
    Ray Wohlfarth
    Boiler Lessons
    Click here to take Ray's class.
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  • Erin Holohan HaskellErin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 1,418
    Thanks for listening, Ray!
  • GrallertGrallert Member Posts: 454
    Thank you for that. Bikes a plumbing, two of my favorite thing.
    Erin Holohan Haskell
  • Larry WeingartenLarry Weingarten Member Posts: 1,912
    It's interesting. We've been so steeped in doing more with less that the idea of condemning bicycles because they made you too efficient is a bit of a mind bender. Thanks for the perspective! :p

    Yours, Larry
    Erin Holohan Haskell
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,047
    Glad you enjoyed the story. Many more on the way. Thanks for listening!
    Retired and loving it.
  • An excellent example of disruptive innovation, imagine how a younger fit worker with the economic means to buy a bicycle suddenly had a competitive advantage over co-workers say with large families to support or who were less fit. This change probably was disrupting the seniority hierarchy for workers in much the same way the introduction of some computer control and diagnostic systems now may advantage younger workers that grew up using computers today. Thanks!
  • RandalRipleyRandalRipley Member Posts: 1
    Good story Dan. I look forward to the next edition.
    Erin Holohan Haskell
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,047
    Thanks, guys. The listener is more important than the storyteller. Pass it on. And please subscribe. 
    Retired and loving it.
    Erin Holohan Haskell
  • HansonGHansonG Member Posts: 8
    I like it! Yes, everything was once new. And new is what disrupts (sometimes improves) the old technologies.
    Thanks for the great story.
  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,047
    Thanks, @HansonG. Share it with your friends. 
    Retired and loving it.
  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Member Posts: 7,198
    As an electrician back in late 60's many guys would use the "Yankee" push pull screwdriver (you can google if need be) for outlet and switch installation. All screws were slotted Philipps or such.
    We were told that the union people would not allow them on their jobs as "they could damage the wall surface".

    Then eventually there were pitiful little battery drills that needed overnight to charge, but they were a blessing to the late seventies this was the extent of battery drills.
    Only the phone installer had a powerful battery drill, but he had to carry a small car battery around in one hand and drill with the other.

    Of course this has all changed, I can't imagine going back to driving 1" #10 slotted screws into wood all day long for mounting boxes. Start the hole with an awl or ice pick...more self incriminating body dating.
    Almost as ancient as using a hammer to put nails in.
  • dopey27177dopey27177 Member Posts: 401
    Dear Dan;

    Have not heard your voice for nearly 25 years. You still sound like the guy I remember running only classes on steam and hot water heating in New York State.

    Today you took me for a walk down memory lane.

    In 1960 I worked for my mothers 2nd cousin in down town Manhattan. The shop was Forsythe Plumbing and Heating at 79 Forsythe Street.

    My mothers second cousin was Izzy he was 68 years old and worked for his son Luis. Izzy did all local plumbing repairs for the buildings that were owned by his lonsmon (immigrants he came to this country with from Poland).

    I was 18 years old at the time and a snot nosed kid that needed to learn a trade and Izzy was going to be my Teacher and mentor. My job was to carry his leather tool bag with all the tools for the day, that bag weighed some where around 50 pounds and boy do I wish I had a bicycle with a basket to carry the tools around a 10 bock radius in the lower east side of New York.

    Most of the work was repairing high tank water closets, replacing floor flanges for short and long hopper toilet bowls
    waste line leaks for lead bends and lead waste and vent pipes. Izzy wheeled a mean gasoline blow torch when he lead wiped the lead piping. He taught me well. Unfortunately we walked the streets and climbed the stairs in 5 story tenement buildings where the water closet was in the hall and shared by as many as four apartments, wish I had bicycle back then.

    Thanks for trip down memory lane.

  • DanHolohanDanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 15,047
    Your stories are fantastic, Jake. Thanks so much for sharing!
    Retired and loving it.
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