“Awesome product. We flat specified it!”

April 14, 2021News

Mount Sinai Building Supervisor swears by Tapmaster<sup>®</sup> activators

Derrick Muir, Operations Supervisor, Building Services at Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital thinks so highly of Tapmaster® hands-free faucet activators (also known as controllers), he’s recommending them to other hospitals.

“It’s an awesome, back-to-basics product,” he says, adding, with a smile, that he believes the installed activators will last another 10 years, until he retires. “I don’t think about them once they’re in.”

Muir was there when the first unit was installed as a trial in the Mt Sinai Emergency Room in 2013. Since that time, “that original Emergency Room activator has been used at least every 15 minutes, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year,” he says.

And since then, Mt Sinai has installed approximately 900 Tapmaster® hands-free faucet activators and flat-specified the brand for ongoing construction and renovations.

That will likely mean several hundred additional units, he says. The current Renew Sinai initiative is the largest and most ambitious redevelopment in Mt Sinai’s history. Many important facilities will be completely redesigned and rebuilt by the end of 2022. The work will include more than 140 distinct projects on 20 floors and about 300,000 square feet of hospital space. That’s the equivalent of five football fields!

During our recent Zoom call with Muir, we also asked him: “Would you say Mt Sinai medical staff believes Tapmaster® controllers slow the spread of infection?”

Muir’s response: “One hundred percent!”

Asked about sensor faucets (the competition), Muir says they’ve had to be replaced numerous times. Cleaners often damaged them, whereas Tapmaster® activators “show no wear and tear.”

Muir also likes that Tapmaster® activators require no electricity. They’ve “held strong through power outages” and Mt Sinai (a Jewish healthcare facility) does not use electricity on the Sabbath.

“I recommended Tapmaster® to two other facilities: Sunnybrook and Lakeridge in Oshawa,” Muir says, adding “It’s low maintenance, which is low cost. It has been installed in the public washrooms and on drinking fountains as well. It lasts longer. The new spaces throughout the Mt Sinai hospital system are all Tapmaster®. And no other manufacturer gives me service like Tapmaster®.”

Why we manufacture in-house in Canada

February 9, 2021News

Tapmaster® has been manufacturing our products in-house in Alberta since we started up in 1993. Over the years we’ve grown from a small garage-based operation in Calgary to a larger operation in the MD of Rocky View. As of March 2021 we are excited to be moving into a new location within the city of Calgary. This move allows us the space and resources to increase our production even further. Moving back into the city also affords us a number of other tangible and intangible advantages that we did not have while operating outside the city. We have a better selection of telecommunications providers, close access to transit for our staff and reduced costs for things like shipping providers.

Over the years we have looked at overseas manufacturing to reduce costs as well as moving to other provinces. But every time we explored other options it remained apparent that keeping our operations in Alberta made the most sense for us.

Quality

Innovative Custom Design for hands free faucet controllers

Tapmaster® prides itself on our high-quality products that lead to extremely high customer satisfaction. Much of our quality comes from elegant and effective design choices. However, the care our staff put into building every single Tapmaster® product plays an even bigger role in our success. Tapmaster® may seem like a simple device, but it requires extremely tight tolerances and attention to detail to ensure it performs to our standards. Every valve assembly is hand-built and tested to find any minor performance abnormalities before they are shipped. That’s right, we test every single valve before it leaves the factory! This kind of individual care and attention is hard to foster when manufacturing overseas in a contract factory.

Economic leadership

People walking on Calgary Peace BridgeFurther to that, Alberta is our home. We have countless friends and family here and feel a great sense of pride knowing that Tapmaster® products are shipped worldwide bringing money directly into our home economy.

It is no secret that the Alberta economy has been hit with significant challenges over the last few years. The drop in oil and gas prices as well as the global pandemic have hit us hard. Businesses across the province are struggling with the impacts of reduced exports and tour

ism. Manufacturers like Tapmaster® provide an alternate way to bring much-needed cash into the Canadian and Albertan economies. Alberta is an extremely business-friendly province with great access to local suppliers and an aggressive tax advantage.

Supply chain management

One thing we have always been weary of when considering offshore manufacturing was disruptions in the supply chain. Disruptions in intercontinental shipping can occur for many reasons ranging from weather to geopolitical challenges and public health crises. Even now, many companies are experiencing major supply chain disruptions due to COVID-19. Where possible we source our raw materials and within North America. We also keep the vast majority of our suppliers within Alberta. This has allowed us to completely avoid disruption in our ability to produce and sell products through the pandemic.

Rapid prototyping and development

Tapmaster®: Medical

We design our products in the same building we manufacture them. This makes it easy for us to make on-the-fly production improvements. In the time it takes to complete one CNC part-run we can make changes to the CNC program and implement them on the next production batch. This close communication between the designer and the machinist optimizes our product for both improved quality and production speed.

Manufacturing in-house also allows us to randomly pull completed assemblies for full analysis and testing. If there are any issues that might have gone unnoticed in production we can catch them early before they become a problem. This includes things like minor tooling wear and chemical variations in diaphragm materials.

Going forward

All of those are just some of the reasons we choose to keep manufacturing in Canada. There are plenty of other advantages that are harder to quantify, as well as a few disadvantages. Until recently, commercial real-estate in Calgary was both hard to come-by and could be quite expensive. Calgary has also not been a traditionally manufacturing focused city. These things are starting to change, and we see precision manufacturing operations such as ourselves thriving in Alberta going forward. There are many skilled engineers, technologists, machinists etc. in the province just waiting to get started on a new and exciting project.