Thank you for your article, "Trending Towards Smaller Machines" by Becky Mollenkamp, in the September 2010 issue. As always, the article was well written and presented, and it is a good example of your publication's efforts of identifying trends in our industry.

However, it seems to me the article, which focused on the growing interest and sales of smaller automatic scrubbers, missed a significant point. Not only are smaller automatic scrubbers garnering greater interest in Europe and North America, but so, too, are smaller burnishers.

When floor care equipment manufacturers, including Tornado, first introduced smaller burnishers two years ago, the compact machines were targeted toward specific niche markets, such as smaller or highly congested facilities.

However, what we have discovered is that smaller burnishers have received greater, broader interest than anticipated. The reasons for the increased attention are similar to those discussed for automatic scrubbers:

  • Cost savings
  • Greater flexibility
  • Use in smaller areas and different types of areas
  • Easy set up allowing for "quick cleans"
  • Smaller footprint for storage
  • Quieter operation

The last option stands out because, as mentioned in the article, these smaller machines "fit the mold for day cleaning another factor in their popularity." This is definitely true for small burnishers and, again, one of their key drawing cards.

A final item that possibly should have been considered as well is the fact that many of these smaller machines, including scrubbers and burnishers, are more environmentally responsible than their larger, older counterparts. The environmentally friendly features on these new smaller units often include technology that allows them to use less water and chemicals, generate less dust, and the use of more eco-friendly batteries. Because our industry is becoming so green and sustainable-focused, this is another attribute that deserves mentioning.

Michael Schaffer, president Tornado Industries, West Chicago, Ill.