ASBSH Member Profile

ASBSH Member Profile: Jacob Stecher

ABHR spoke to Jacob Stecher, principal engineer and director of Fraser-Lever consulting engineers and member of the Australian Society of Bulk Solids Handling (ASBSH).

ABHR spoke to Jacob Stecher, principal engineer and director of Fraser-Lever consulting engineers and member of the Australian Society of Bulk Solids Handling (ASBSH).

I have been a member of ASBSH since… 

2018.

I am a member of ASBSH because…

I feel the industry needs a uniting entity to better share learnings, experience, mentor and promote innovation. The bulk materials handling industry and mining industry is typically conservative and as a result it is difficult to commercialise new concepts and products. As the ASBSH is part of Engineers Australia, it should be seen as a trusted society.

I got into bulk handling because…

as a result of the demise of manufacturing in Australia, I felt I needed to transition to the predominate industry in the country – mining. I was fortunate to end up in a small engineering business that specialised in the design and construction of unique and bespoke materials handling solutions. 

I am currently researching… 

with a company on modular conveyor systems, as well as redesigning the hydraulics on a SIL rated truck loading gate.

I love my current work because…

it gives me the opportunity to shape my career. I enjoy the business development (sales and systems) as well as the engineering. In this position I am fortunate to be exposed to a large variety of engineering and business opportunities. I also love the fact that I have a built a strong network of colleagues that I can call upon to discuss problems and hopefully find the right solution. all aspects of project execution.

In my role it’s important to…

understand the fundamentals of what is being designed in a practical sense. Understanding the real-world problem, comes from a career of getting your hands dirty on site or in the workshop. In the principal engineer role, it is essential to convey this exposure to younger engineers as part of the mentoring process.

The project I am most proud of is…

the Runway Upgrade Platform (RUP) that was designed and built for Boyne Smelters. Our small team started with a blank sheet of paper and ended up with a commissioned machine 8 months later. The RUP was a 135 tonne, two storey, construction platform that contained 35 drives, fold out and roll platforms, davits, monorails, HVAC systems, crib room, air scrubbers to create breathable air, 15T of fibreglass insulation and a dedicated truck with generators to power the platform. The RUP allowed a team of approximately 10 men to work above the live potline at Boyne Smelters. There are a huge number of challenges for designing equipment in a pot line that made the project so much more challenging.

The most valuable lesson I have learned is …

to listen. Listening to clients, fellow engineers, mentors, etc. If you do not listen and understand what is being asked, then the brief is often misunderstood, or incorrect assumptions are made. This leads to unnecessary rework and cost.

My plans for the future are …

to grow the bulk materials handling side of our business. We have significant experience in our team in both design and construction that we haven’t capitalised on yet. Our focus is to assist our clients in brownfield upgrades, modifications and to provide inventive solutions to unique problems. 

When I am not working you will probably find me…

enjoying my family. I get out four or five times a week to swim with a masters squad and we get out and compete in oceans swims. I am also about to start restoring a Historic Formula 3 open wheel race car. 

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