“Just Can’t stop Magnetrol”

Or any other arrogant US marketing hype. Sorry but this is too much.

In a paid for (ie not editorially validated) entry in PCN Europe’s PCNE e-mailed newsletter today, Magnetrol offer a cash prize of Euro500 plus a new Magnetrol Mechanical Buoyancy Switch for the company which can find the oldest Magnetrol switch submitted with a photo, the application and the age of the switch. In real English, a mechanical buoyancy switch is a float level switch: Magnetrol say they introduced the first of such switches to the process industry over 80 years ago. Therefore pre 1935.

What the news item says, which is all sales rubbish, is as follows:

“The “Just Can’t Stop a MAGNETROL” contest will honour the hardest-working, longest-lasting level switches still in operation.

Ever since MAGNETROL invented and introduced the first mechanical buoyancy switches to process industries over 80 years ago, customers have counted on their exceptional reliability and performance in level control applications – even after decades of service.”

This “competition” is open until end October this year. AND SO IS the following competition:

What I would like you to do, independent of any manufacturer, is ask you to actually look at your old float level switches, and send pictures, of the application and of the nameplate, with a brief comment on the duty involved, and info about the level switch name, serial number or any date info, and the manufacturer’s name, and we will report on the oldest, most reliable range of float level switch, evidenced by being found still in operation today. Whether made by Magnetrol, or maybe from someone else. Probably these need to be pre-WW2 to stand a chance of being the oldest!

As the saying goes, maybe I will have to eat humble pie, or my hat, but I wager that the oldest one located is going to be a switch made by Ronald Trist Controls, which from 1975 was known as Bestobell Mobrey, but before the Ronald Trist name, it was just called Trist Controls, I think. Don’t forget to look in your steam boiler house at the old float operated switches which may still be controlling water levels in your Lancashire steam boiler!

And come November, we will see the result, honest. Impartial. And I guarantee the manufacturer, whoever it is, will want to pay you a finder’s fee for rights to use the story, and your photos, in their PR! I’ll negotiate it for you, totally impartially, as long as I can quote all the results, and my rates are very reasonable, in GBP not Swiss Francs….

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