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Unread 10-07-2017, 09:17 PM   #1
Tool Guy - Kg
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NTCA's Regional Training Program's trial run

Anyone else read about NTCA's new Regional Training Program? I found out about it in Tile Letter in August...page 72. Mark Heinlein and Becky Serbin just kicked off their very first session not too far from me, so I signed up and attended.

Here's what they did: the NTCA coordinated a LOT of NTCA members to come together to present this training at our local Bricklayers and Allied Craft Workers Training Center. Top notch instructors. There were two sessions to choose from. Both really good topics if you ask me. One for "Portland Cement Mortar Beds" and another for "Gauged Porcelain Tile and Gauged Porcelain Tile Panels/Slabs" I chose the mortar bed training and it was way cool. Jeff Kimmerling from Laticrete was the main presenter for the session. I wasn't initially drawn to the hands-on portion where they taught about shower pans, 'cause I've do so many of them. But there was enough variety in pan styles that made it really worthwhile. I was really drawn to their training on pulling big flat floors. And wall mud! A couple of retired mud guys (including Jeff's Dad) were slingin' mud and it was an art-show! Very enjoyable presentations on the floor and walls. Other than the John Bridge Forum that held a mud event a few years ago, there's very little training going on for mud. You gotta see this!

I can't say enough good things about it. It's free training for those interested. They want $50 up front to hold your spot. But it's REFUNDED to you when you attend!!!

Here's a link to the NTCA. And here's a link to the training I attended.

This was a trial run for this program scheduled to start next year. They're planning to have two seminars per NTCA region per year. So keep your eyes peeled for upcoming opportunities. No, I'm not their shill! But the training is waaaaaaaaaaay too good to not brag about it. Nice job NTCA and nice job all those that gave their time to put this event on. It was first-class all the way.
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Unread 10-07-2017, 10:04 PM   #2
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I hope they have one close to me.
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Unread 10-08-2017, 06:24 PM   #3
Tool Guy - Kg
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Mixing some mud...
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Starting out on a floor. Getting the welded wire mesh in place...
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Established height and beginning to screed...
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Continued screeding...
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I think the "fanning" technique was the single most helpful portion of the floor mud section.
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Unread 10-08-2017, 10:42 PM   #4
Brad Denny
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I thought I spied a JBF shirt onna smaller fella in one of those pictures...


It did look like a great event. Don Dedux had been hounding everyone about it in NTCA leadership for at least a year or two, even coming to a Board meeting about it.

I wanted to ask how awesome the BAC facility was. Looks pretty nice to me.
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Unread 10-09-2017, 07:24 AM   #5
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Who's Brand Denny? Anybody know?
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Unread 10-09-2017, 08:13 AM   #6
Brad Denny
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It's been so crazy in my world I ask myself the same question JB!!

We've made some big changes in our company and there's no lack of activities to be involved with concerning the industry in general. I hope to have things ironed out with the company by 2018 (that's the goal anyway) and I'm excited to see how picked apart proposed edits to the ANSI A108.2.4 section that I worked with a group on gets at TSP in November. Nothing more humbling than throwing yourself out there!!
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Unread 10-09-2017, 01:30 PM   #7
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It's good to see some word of mouth going on over these events. MAPEI will be helping out with some of the upcoming events, NTCA is rotating suppliers and keeping it standards-oriented so it isn't perceived as a sales event. They are designed to be hands-on and practical and we're happy to help however we can.
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Unread 10-10-2017, 08:08 PM   #8
Tool Guy - Kg
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Yep, it was standards-based. I like that the methods were all called out in the syllabus ahead of time.

But....especially considering that a lot of manufacturers donate their personnel and all sorts of materials to events like this, I'd like to see all the participating manufacturers get rewarded a tiny amount by giving the participants what some nay-sayers might call a 'mini advertisement'. Not a sales pitch to buy X manufacturer's line of stuff. But little gold nuggets of problem solving products. For example, If we were working with 5:1 mud of sand and Portland...and the standard called for a minimum mud bed thickness of 1 1/2", I'd welcome hearing that X manufacturer produces a bagged mud mix that could be used down to a thinner thickness for Z method. Now, I realize this can be a super slippery slope. So, I do respect wanting to stick to the standards and standards alone. Wish we could have it both ways.

These are not sales events at heart. Anyone who cares for this industry and sharing knowledge can see that they are teaching events. Good job, NTCA. Good job participating manufacturers. And good job to all the folks putting on the training. In our case, there was about a dozen peeps who spent their time and money traveling to this event to contribute to our industry....when they could have been on a paying job elsewhere.
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Unread 10-13-2017, 09:23 AM   #9
Brad Denny
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I am looking forward to what the expanded program looks like in 2018! The goal is to have it in many different regions across the country, tailored just for those areas.

The NTCA would love to have anyone interested in supporting future events, either as a participant, a demonstrator, or manufacturer partner, contact us so we can line up an awesome calendar for next year. Feel free to reach out to me, Becky Serbin, or Mark Heinlein.

Our supporting manufacturers do so much to educate and enrich the labor side of our industry and their involvement here is no different. We are very thankful they see this as an worthwhile investment of their resources.

Keep an eye out for the word to be spread through Social media posts, eNews blasts, and TileLetter coverage. We need anyone holding a trowel to make a living know that there are resources to continue their education in their craft.

To keep the conversation going here...what are some topics you'd like to see covered in your area??
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