Awhile back I mentioned there were some big projects in the works around here. This has been Number 1 on my list for over a year now.
Last summer I threw out an idea that took hold, and since last November I've been thrilled to be a part of a project that I think will be a major help for industry professionals.
The National Fire Sprinkler Association (NFSA) has published informal opinions on everything fire sprinklers for longer than I've been alive. Their Expert of the Day program answers real questions to the 'gray' areas of code with practical advice from leading industry experts.
While these opinions have been collected and published monthly for decades, up until now they've never been assembled, organized, and published into a single resource.
I'm thrilled to announce that this collection of expertise is now complete; the NFSA Expert of the Day Handbook is a two-volume, hardcover set of over 1,300 pages covering nearly 2,000 questions on over 585 topics relevant to fire sprinkler systems, standpipes, water supplies, inspection, testing, maintenance, codes and standards.
Why am I so thrilled about it? I had the pleasure to work with NFSA by collecting, converting, and organizing all the expert inputs into these volumes. This was a concept I really wanted to see happen - and after sharing the idea of compiling the years of content to NFSA they were happy to fold me into the team on this project.
It's now available for pre-sale with shipments starting in just a few weeks (late August / early September).
If you are a sprinkler designer, engineer, inspector, installer, plan reviewer, code authority, or work in and around the fire sprinkler industry, then this handbook was built for you.
Just in the eight months of reading and compiling the information I saved days of code research (thousands of dollars in billable hours) by having quick access to these expert opinions. Just as it is part of the mission of this site, I am wholeheartedly excited to see how these handbooks help promote best practices and share expertise with the industry.
Check out more about this two-volume 1,300 page set and get a copy today.
Questions? Comments? Shoot me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I recently had the joy of recording a podcast episode with the Fire Protection Podcast. Host Drew Slocum and I talked about writing on technical topics, digital products, designing in Revit, my backstory of getting started online, and more. Check it out here and subscribe to the Fire Protection Podcast by clicking "Subscribe" below.
I'm taking a few weeks this summer to spend time in tool development and get some longer-term projects moving. Look forward to posting new articles in mid August! If you want to catch up, you can always reach me at email@example.com or subscribe for updates when they're posted here.
Determining the correct height of a fire sprinkler relative to structure and ceilings or roofs is not typically a difficult task. Yet, the more I explored the basic premise the more I realized how different the needs for each sprinkler type are.
This week I've been working on a cheatsheet for fire sprinkler deflector heights. It's a flowchart that helps direct the sprinkler height and code reference based on the type of sprinkler. Click here to download a PDF copy.
If you find cheatsheets like these helpful, consider subscribing to free tools like these here.
Take a look and let me know what you think. Thanks & have a great week!
If you are taking the Fire Protection PE Exam this year - good news. I've partnered with Chris Campbell at the Building Code Blog to help you pass the exam with the PE Roadmap, and he's extended the sale through tomorrow, July 10th.
It's a focused study plan with schedule, reading references, locations for practice content, and more analytics to help you study more effectively.
Chris has extended the sale through today - check it out all the details here.
The value of critical thinking could probably never be understated in our industry.
I’ve found that many of the sharpest minds and best leaders I’ve encountered in fire protection are avid readers and relentless learners. Reading regularly is an incredibly valuable tool to broaden our perspective and grow our own limits.
This week I’m taking a step aside from the technical content a putting up a summer reading list for books I’ve found interesting and helpful for professionals in our arena.
#1 Talking to Strangers
Accomplished author Malcolm Gladwell offers an extremely timely perspective of our natural tendency to overestimate our ability to judge others and underestimate our own ability to be understood. Published just in Fall 2019 this book explores major storylines of the last few years and breaks down the misunderstandings we carry when talking to strangers.
This is a powerful and timely read, especially after the events of the past couple months. | Link
#2 The Future is Faster Than You Think
If you’ve followed some of the prior book summaries I’ve written you know that the advancements we have coming our way in the near future is something I take great interest in. This book is a continuation of my favorite book of all time (next), by Peter Diamandis.
Every innovation we’ve achieved has been from a mixing of ideas that are at the cusp of the technology at any given time. We have witnessed more technological advancement in the last one hundred years than our entire history before it.
While we naturally tend to think the present will continue into the future (without major innovation) for the next decades, our history is saying the opposite; the time gap between major innovation has shortened (think major disruptions like internet and cell phones). Due to “convergence” of a wide variety of innovations in transport, medicine, AI, and a host of other developments, these time gaps are getting shorter. If our history has shown us anything, its that the pace of change is increasing and the near future will see major advancements that will reshape how we view the world. | Link
#3 Abundance: The Future is Better Than You Think
I’ve written on this one before, but I continue to circle back to it and never finish the book without a sense of hope for the direction our world is heading.
If you follow the nightly news its easy to see that the world is shattered and on the verge of complete collapse… except that’s a microview.
Stepping back and looking at trends across history, its clear that we’re in store for a better, cleaner healthier future that is backed by data. A phenomenal read. | Link
#4 Design is a Job
This is a surprisingly brash and straightforward book of guidance on how to market, sell and support a design-related business.
While the author is in the programming and graphic design industry, so much of the discussion in this book applies directly to the architectural/engineering space.
A very interesting and refreshing read about the nuances of working in a design-related field. | Link
#5 Thirst: A Story of Redemption, Compassion, and a Mission to Bring Clean Water to the World
This is the first time I’ll mention it, but it won’t be the last. The long-term vision for going starting this website and going independent is to try and make the world a little better each day. Water doesn’t just fight fires, it’s the single most important need we have as humans. This book takes a very personal transformative story of a nightclub promoter turned major nonprofit co-founder. The more interesting and encouraging part of the story is about the positive impact that providing clean water to the developing world does. The long-term MeyerFire vision is pointed directly at the most fundamental need we have globally and we’re saving towards some exciting goals on this front. More to come, but as for the book it’s an impact read. | Link
Those are five of my most impactful reads recently. What have you read that you'd recommend? Comment here.
I hope you are having a great week.
This week is a 2020 update to a popular post from 2016 with a free PDF cheatsheet. It's usefully for novice designers or experienced inspectors, with clear code references and purposes of each of the components that go into a floor control assembly serving a fire sprinkler system.
A breakout of each of the components that go into a fire sprinkler floor control assembly.
If you find any of these tools helpful, consider sharing with a friend or colleague and nudge them to subscribe for more tools and tips like this here: www.meyerfire.com/subscribe. Thanks in advance!
Last week I introduced a Remote Area Analyzer that evaluates remote area size and shape.
This week could possibly be the biggest and best expansion of any tool created thus far. I'm thrilled to present a beta version of our Sprinkler Estimator tool.
With a few default adjustments, you can quickly get a remote area's pressure and flow demand, remote area shape, and have a live schematic of the calculation that updates without a need for "re-running" the calculation.
For a long time now I've wanted a tool where I could quickly estimate pipe sizes and a remote area's demands before I started laying out the system so that I could be as efficient in my design workflow as possible. What typically takes me 30 minutes to a couple hours can now be gathered in less than 30 seconds.
Another fun application? Want to see what effect k-factors have on your calculation? What about long sprigs? Or what about pipe schedule changes? Wet versus dry systems? What about a consistent branch size versus changing pipe diameters? With this tool you can adjust parameters with just a click and see the live impact it has on your calculation.
I'm really not trying to hard sell this one, I've just had my morning coffee and I'm thrilled to have you give it a try. It's been something I've thought about and developed piece by piece for a couple years now.
The best way to experience it is with the downloadable version of the Toolkit. You can get a free 30-day trial of that here, or download the latest full version here. The downloadable version has a split-screen that shows the live preview and live calculated results while also allowing you to adjust parameters... no scrolling required.
Click here to give it a try on our cloud version, and shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any feedback or suggestions.
Thanks and I hope you have a great week!
When I initially set up a hydraulic calculation for a tree-style sprinkler system, there are a few key points I have to consider. All of these points today and the tool are specifically for tree systems (not gridded).
First, we need to determine what the remote area actually is. In NFPA 13, for instance, there are multiple adjustments (quick-response sprinklers, dry systems, sloped systems, high-temperature, etc.). Even if we start with a 1,500 sqft remote area, it could look a lot different after multiple adjustments.
Second, we need to determine the minimum length of the remote area along a branch line. This is a relatively straightforward at 1.2 x √ (remote area size), but it's still another hand-calculation that needs to take place.
We then round up to determine the sprinklers along the first branch line, then expand by branch lines to figure out how many sprinklers are actually in a calculation.
The tool I'm introducing today (which is also now available on the Toolkit) is a schematic-level remote area analyzer that will apply multiple adjustments and quickly estimate the important parameters associated with a remote area.
With only a few quick inputs, you'll see an initial remote area laid out with a live schematic of your situation. Click either of the images below to give it a try:
A new remote-area analysis tool which incorporates adjustments and gives a live schematic layout. See it here.
If you already have the toolkit, you can download this and three other recently added tools in today's Toolkit update here. If you're interested in giving this tool a try, check it out here. I'll have it up without any login credentials for a couple months.
In time, I'm looking forward to expanding this tool to have some powerful estimating abilities.
Any suggestions, tips or feedback? Post a comment or shoot me an email at email@example.com.
A Hurting World at Large
Just like I don't ask hollywood to be my moral compass, you don't come here for my my personal opinions. I get it. That said there has been a tremendous amount of unrest here locally, nationally, and worldwide this past week.
I think there's a major feeling that our collective perspective has to improve. I want to do better and be part of a better future for everyone. I want you to know that whoever you are and wherever you are, I very much care about you and your well being. You have tremendous value. Hope you and yours are safe, healthy, and doing well.
Thanks & I hope you have a great week.
Did you know there are over 1,500 variations of sprinkler models which are actively on the market today?
Around three years ago we began development on one of the largest research projects we've ever undertaken - organization of all the fire sprinklers available on the market today. It took several hundreds of hours to finely comb through all the k-factors, pressure listings, spacing distances, model numbers, responses, and links to websites and product data.
The Comprehensive Fire Sprinkler Database
In late 2018, we finally released it - a comprehensive Fire Sprinkler Database. With it you can search by SIN, k-factor, type, spacing distances.... most any parameter you need to in order to find the sprinkler that's the best fit for your design.
The introductory video to it is here (forgive the terrible voice narrator... it was me): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsLPg4GKaCU
Updates from This Week
Just this week we've updated the database to include recent releases for new sprinkler models from Tyco, Viking, and Reliable, including new window sprinklers, concealed sprinkler options, MRI sprinklers, institutional sprinklers, and corridor sprinklers.
Use It Today
If you haven't checked it out - here's an opportunity to do so. I've opened it up for everyone just for the next couple weeks. Just go to this link - www.meyerfire.com/sprinklerdatabase - and login using firstname.lastname@example.org as the username and sprinklerdatabase as the password if you're not already a Toolkit subscriber.
The Fire Sprinkler Database is the most current and comprehensive database of available fire sprinklers across all manufacturers we know about. Click the image to login and try it out.
For those in the inspection department - it's been asked how we can take this to the next level.
Can we get obsolete and recalled sprinklers into the database as well, so that we can quickly search to find information on recalls? That answer is yes, but I need your help. I'm not regularly involved in inspections, but I know many of you are.
If you have a good understanding of where all the various manufacturers recall information (old and current companies) and how I could best showcase that material, please reach out to me at email@example.com. I'd be happy to get some input on how I can tackle this next phase of the database and make it that much more useful for us all.
Thanks & have a great week!
Get Free Articles via Email:
+ Get calculators, tools, resources and articles
+ Get our PDF Flowchart for Canopy & Overhang Requirements instantly
+ No spam
+ Unsubscribe anytime
Get access to every tool, the downloadable Toolkit, Sprinkler Database, Calculators and more:
Joseph Meyer, PE, owns/operates his own Fire Protection Engineering practice in St. Louis, Missouri. See bio on About page.