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“Arctic Blaster” Still Going Strong After 20 Years
More than 20 years ago Alberta oilfield worker Del Botheras invented a simple device called the Arctic Blaster to thaw frozen pipes (see FARM SHOW’s Vol. 17, No. 2). “I worked around equipment that froze up all the time,” says Botheras. “We tried torches, hot water, and other things that weren’t always very safe,” says Botheras. “I figured there had to be a simple solution so I worked up a device that used a propane torch as a heat source to create dry steam.”

    Over the past couple decades Botheras has sold several thousand Arctic Blasters throughout the cold areas of North America. It holds about 2 gal. of water and starts generating steam in 10 min. Steam feeds out a long, braided 3/8-in. hose. Pressure is limited to 16 psi, and the temperature never exceeds 230 degrees.

    “When the winter is harsh and cold, like it was in 2014, I have a tough time keeping up with orders,” says Botheras. “Sales last year were 3 times a normal winter. I had companies want to buy me out but they tell me they’d have to double the price because I wasn’t charging enough,” Botheras says. “That rubbed me the wrong way because the product now is affordable for just about anybody. If it’s twice the price, that would cut sales way down. My goal has always been to make an affordable product that people can use.”

    Botheras says the best endorsement he ever received was from a customer in Northwest Territories. The fellow wrote “Before I got your machine we were froze up from November to May. Now I can thaw out pipes anytime during the winter and not have to worry about burning anything up in the process.” Botheras says it’s letters and calls like those that give him enthusiasm for the business even though he’s 75 and wants to slow down sometime in the not too distant future.

    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Del Botheras, Arctic Blaster, Inc., P.O. Box 918, Sundre, Alberta T0M 1X0 Canada (ph 403 638-3934; delsgal@live.com).

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2015 - Volume #39, Issue #1