Orlando Firm Answers Demand With Concrete Recycling Company

Mon March 12, 2007 - Southeast Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

In today’s competitive economic climate, the most successful businesses are those which recognize opportunity, seize it and work it to their benefit.

Growing one’s business to include complimentary functions, using connections made in one area to boost performance in another, and employing the best processing technology available, are examples of this approach, and Orlando Recycled Materials (ORM) has used them all. For its efforts, the Florida company — in operation for less than a year — has already established itself as a serious player in the local concrete recycling market and is poised for even further growth.

Offer He Couldn’t Refuse

Orlando Recycled Materials is the brainchild of Carlo Rutigliano, president and owner of three other firms, one in his native New York, two others in the Orlando area.

“Here in Orlando, we run an excavation contracting company called Metro Services of Florida Inc. as well as a trucking company, CEC Trucking,” he said. “In the course of doing projects, I often found myself having to buy crushed stone and rock from area crushing firms — at the same time that I was hauling concrete away from reconstruction and demolition projects. I always felt there had to be a better solution and got it in an offer from one of Rinker Materials’ local plants.”

That offer, he said, was immediately intriguing: establish a crushing company to process material from some of Rinker’s area locations in exchange for use of land at one of the material supplier’s block plants.

“It was a plan that worked to everyone’s benefit,” Rutigliano said. “Rinker would have a cost-effective means to dispose of its excess material and we would get the product we so badly needed. It was definitely a win-win for everyone. All that was needed was for us to put it into action, so we started the process of establishing the new company.“

Plants for Plants

When deciding on the key components of the operation — the crushing and screening plants — Rutigliano looked at a number of products from different manufacturers but went with a company with which he already had a successful track record.

“As part of our clearing operation, we used to de-water sites and got great performance separating out vegetation with a Screen-It from Construction Equipment Company [CEC]. We already had excellent support for that line through Bob Ferguson at the Orlando branch of Pioneer Machinery, so we were confident that parts availability would never be an issue. CEC also had a very competitive price; based on all those factors, we went with them for both the crushing and screening machinery.”

The crushing/screening plant Rutigliano set in place at the Rinker site consists of a CEC Model 102x115 track impact crusher feeding a CEC 6 X 16 Screen-It dual deck screen.

Nothing Goes to Waste

ORM’s site takes in material from a 15-mi. (24 km) radius and includes discarded product from Rinker plants as well as debris from area contractors. Although they don’t accept traditional construction and demolition waste which can contain wood, sheetrock and other materials, Rutigliano said much of the material still needs some pre-processing prior to crushing.

“The majority of material we get has to be downsized in some manner, so we have a Pemberton concrete pulverizer mounted on one of our excavators for that function. We often get structure boxes from utility projects that have been damaged or are being replaced. These concrete structures are heavy with rebar, so we pulverize them, pull the steel out and stockpile it. When we get a sufficient pile of steel, we send it off to be recycled. We really try not to waste anything here.”

As something of an added bonus, ORM’s crushing site sits adjacent to a ready-mix plant which, by nature, generates a decent amount of waste concrete from its trucks’ washout process. As part of an agreement, the company stockpiles its hardened washout material and Rutigliano’s trucks remove it. Again, both parties benefit.

Putting it to Good Use

While Rutigliano uses a good portion of the product he creates on his own projects, he has also become a supplier to other area contractors who use the material as road base or in drainage situations.

“Right now our material uses concrete fines rather than lime rock, so it can only be used by contractors involved in private projects. However, as lime rock in the area becomes harder to find and more costly, DOT is looking at alternatives — and ours is one of those alternatives. So we are very close to getting DOT-certification for our product which, obviously, will open us up to more demand.”

The CEC crushing system in place at ORM allows them to generate three separate products: a 1/2-in. minus base rock, generally used as a stabilizer; a modified No. 57 stone measuring 0.5 to 1.5-in. (1.3 to 3.2 cm) which can be used as a substitute for No. 57 virgin aggregate; and overs measuring 2 to 4-in. (5 to 10 cm), which can be used as pipe bedding as well as in other similar applications.

In addition, ORM has responded to a recent customer request by modifying its top deck screen size and recirculating the No. 57 product to allow creation of a pea rock for use in manufactured concrete products.

Bigger and Better

ORM currently runs its plant approximately 8 to 10 hours a day and is generating production rates in the 125 to 150 ton (113 to 136 t) per hour range. With prep time and regular maintenance that puts its volumes at anywhere from 20,000 to 22,000 tons (18,140 to 19,960 t) a month. While Rutigliano is pleased with those numbers, he already has his sights set on taking the operation to the next level.

“Things have really changed since we first looked at setting up this company,” he said. “Today, I can acquire a good deal more material than I thought I could back then. The crusher in place now is CEC’s smallest model and, while it is doing an excellent job for us, we’re looking towards growth. In fact, we are close to wrapping up the purchase and permitting of a 20-acre site which will allow us to take in more material, improve the separation of that material, and increase production.”

To make that rise in production happen, Rutigliano said he has already purchased a second CEC crusher, a Model 133x152 dual recycling plant which should allow production rates as high as 300 tons (272 t) per hour or 48,000 tons (43,500 t) per month. With that purchase, ORM has gone from the smallest plant CEC makes to the largest, yet Rutigliano opted to keep his current crusher rather than trade it in upon delivery of the larger one.

“We have had opportunities to do contract mobile crushing projects in the past, but had to severely limit those because doing so would cause us to fall behind on production in the yard. We will now be able to fully dedicate that smaller crusher to a mobile operation and expand our capabilities even further. This area shows no signs of slowing down its growth and we’re confident that we will be equipped to meet those needs.”

(This story also can be found on Construction Equipment Guide’s Web site at www.cegltd.com.)

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