CHICOPEE, MA – For the 21st year in a row, Notch Mechanical Constructors held its annual Pipe Welding competition for 85 welding students from vocational high schools across Southern New England. The schools this year included:
- Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School, Marlborough, MA
- Blackstone Valley Regional Vocational Technical High School, Upton MA
- Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School, Taunton, MA
- Chicopee Comprehensive High School, Chicopee, MA
- Dimon Regional Vocational Tech High School, Fall River, MA
- Franklin County Technical School, Turners Falls, MA
- Howell Cheney Technical High School, Manchester, CT
- McCann Technical School, North Adams, MA
- Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical High School, Fitchburg, MA
- Old Colony Regional Vocational Technical High School, Rochester, MA
- Taconic High School, Pittsfield, MA
- Worcester Technical High School, Worcester, MA
On May 22, 2019 students, teachers, sponsors, and public officials were invited to witness the final bend off at Notch’s headquarters in Chicopee. Before this event, Notch representatives traveled to each school where every participant performed a 6″ open-root pipe weld. For the first time in the competition, students had the option to use Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW), also known as “tig” welding. In previous years, Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW), also known as “stick” welding was the only process that could be performed in the competition. Seven students participated in the new Tig welding category this year.
Once all schools had participated, the completed weld samples are visually judged by certified weld inspectors in accordance with ASME Section IX requirements. This year, twenty-two welded samples passed the visual test and would be physically bent at this final event. Once bent, judges inspected and selected the top three samples in each category based on the overall quality of their root and face welds.
Top three Stick winners:
First Place: Adam Miller Kaminski, Blackstone Valley Regional
Second Place: David Goncalves, Blackstone Valley Regional
Third Place: Max Gray, Blackstone Valley Regional
Top three Tig winners:
First Place: Jack Bristol, Blackstone Valley Regional
Second Place: Gavin Murach, McCann Technical School
Third Place: Joe Cardin, Blackstone Valley Regional
As the first place winners, Adam Miller Kaminski and Jack Bristol were each awarded $500 cash, a prize pack of welding tools and supplies, and a first place trophy. Since both students were from the same school, Blackstone Valley received two $250 gift certificates for professional supplies to use in their welding program.
The guest speaker at this year’s event was Gregg Conboy, Senior Project Manager at Erland Construction. Gregg has over 30 years of experience in the construction industry and offered valuable career and life advice for the students.
As always, several generous sponsors* donated prizes consisting of “tools of the trade” for the top three winners and the winning school. There were also enough door prizes and gifts that nobody left empty-handed.
A family-owned business since 1972, Notch Mechanical Constructors specializes in the installation of piping systems for industrial and institutional facilities. From our offices in Chicopee and Hudson, Massachusetts, we serve customers in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Southern New Hampshire.
*This years sponsors included: Notch Mechanical Constructors, City Machine, Collins Pipe & Supply, Mackey Mechanical, Peterson Steel Corporation, Tek Stainless Piping Products, Maine Oxy, ABC Massachusetts, Airgas, B.E. Crowley Pipe & Supply, F.W. Webb, Giombetti Associates, Inc., Gould Construction Institute, Healey & Associates, Independent Pipe and Supply Co., ITW Welding North America, Marcotte Ford, Nefco, Sullivan Metals Co., Swiss Uniforms, TP Daley Insurance, American Safety & Supply Inc., Chicopee Tire & Auto Service, Colony Hardware, New England Promotional Marketing, RJ Holl Art Directions, Tierney & Dalton, and HankeDigital Printing & Graphics Inc.