Software assists for piping and pumps

QuickPlumb Pro 2.1 by Epiphany Software, www.quickplumb.com, is a stand-alone Windows CAD program that enables users to draw drainage waste and vent piping in correct locations with walls and fixtures placed in their precise locations, while keeping up with alignment, slope, fittings and code compliance.

QuickPlumb Pro 2.1 by Epiphany Software, www.quickplumb.com, is a stand-alone Windows CAD program that enables users to draw drainage waste and vent piping in correct locations with walls and fixtures placed in their precise locations, while keeping up with alignment, slope, fittings and code compliance. 

For example, when locating fixture drains, the user can draw the walls and place the fixtures in their precise locations and then highlight a fixture to automatically stretch dimension lines from the vertical drain connection of the fixture to each reference line on the drawing.

The software includes an extensive library of fixtures. The fixture dimensions and drain locations are preset to enable visual checking of the placement of each fixture. You can also add your own fixtures. Fittings are automatically recognized as pipes are attached to the project.

The solution includes a "viewfinder" that supports editing of sections of pipe on the same screen as the total picture by selecting the area to be edited in an alternate view.

When a drawing is complete, the user can print a bill of materials and estimates that will automatically tally all the fittings. The estimates acquire lists from both the drawing and from customer selections. The prices associated with each item are also added along with markup and labor for quick estimates. Users with an account and their own local suppliers who interface online can upload the bill of materials to QuickPlumb's database for instant real-time ordering.

QuickPlumb will also automatically create a pipe cut list that, in the field, would help field personnel assemble the drainage system by matching each pipe to the same pipe number on the printed drawings created by the software. The program provides both isometric and 3D views of the plans.  

PUMP-FLO Premium by PUMP-FLO Solutions, www.pump-flo.com, is an online pump search and selection portal suitable for anyone needing to find the correct pump based on system design or preference of manufacturer. Users can quickly search, select, compare, print and save lists from leading manufacturers' online catalogs. The catalogs page lists all the 80+ pump manufacturers that are searchable, identified by the company logos. Select the catalogs you want to search, then pick the product lines you want to search. Additional information about the product line, if available, is shown on the right side of the screen. If you don't know which product line would meet your needs, you can select "use all."

The user can search across multiple product lines simultaneously. A Quick Search feature estimates the number of results for the user's design point. Search criteria at minimum must include flow rate and total head. (If you don't have a total head measurement, the program provides an onscreen total head calculator.) 

Additional criteria that help hone down the possible options include fluid type, fluid properties, motor sizing, NPSH calculations, pump limits and system operating points. Desktop style spin controls enable adjusting speed and impeller of pump curves. The user can tab back and forth among single pump, multiple pump and multiple speed performance.

PUMP-FLO Premium pump curves are highly interactive, immediately reflecting changes you make, such as increasing or decreasing the impeller or pump speed. As you make changes, you can see the curve change on screen. You can also view any warning that may have been flagged by PUMP-FLO.

For customized selection, it is possible to generate a system resistance curve from the static head and the design point you are trying to meet, including the flow rate, the total head, the BEP and near miss percent of head. You can change units from English to metric or vice versa. You can also add custom data to pumps on the selection list.

You can also specify what motor sizing criteria you want to use and the software will specify advanced criteria as well.  

The software compiles all pumps that meet criteria, with the most efficient pumps listed first. It is easy to sort the list by the criteria most important to you. You can then refine the list by various criteria, such as by removing all motors above a certain size. You can also delete criteria that does not matter to you from the search parameters and reports can show as much or as little detail as you prefer.  

You can share the list with anyone via e-mail. You can collaborate on the list only with recipients who also subscribe to PUMP-FLO Premium. You can choose to share the lists as read only, so the recipient cannot see the whole list of those who have access.

PUMP-FLO search engine is also fully integrated into the PIPE-FLOR Professional program used to design, simulate, analyze and optimize fluid piping systems.

PUMP-FLO Premium works on most mobile devices and tablets with Wi-Fi connections and carries over the same functionality. The workflow stays the same from the computer to the smartphone or tablet.

Bill and Patti Feldman write articles and web content for trade magazines and manufacturers of building products. They can be reached at [email protected]

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