CHICAGO — Cold air and rainy weather didn’t stop thousands of people from coming to the Windy City Jan 22-24 to attend the 2018 AHR Expo.        

The annual event set six records, including the 72,075 in total attendance and 49,995 registered visitors, according to event officials. Other records included 2,155 exhibiting companies, 534,080 square feet of exhibit space and representatives from 169 countries.

“The excitement generated by this year’s record crowds of attendees and exhibitors was palpable from the show floor to the training sessions,” said Clay Stevens of the International Exposition Co., which manages of the expo. “Whether you are designing a building’s HVACR system from the ground up, or want to make your existing spaces warmer, cooler, quieter, smarter, safer or more comfortable and efficient, the AHR Expo is the only place where you can see and experience it all, learn from the industry’s top experts and stay at the forefront of innovation.”

The expo overlapped with ASHRAE’s 2018 winter conference, which was also well-attended, association officials said.

 “The winter conference and AHR Expo are prime opportunities for attendees to stay on top of the latest information and technology needed to work toward a more sustainable world,” said current ASHRAE President Bjarne W. Olesen, Ph.D. “Lessons learned at the conference have a direct impact on the success of our industries and affords us the opportunity to extend this knowledge around the world.”

Here’s a list of some of the thousands of HVAC and sheet metal products on display.

Rossi HVAC Hardware displayed its Everlock positive locking quadrant. The Everlock quadrant replaces the need for wingnuts. Wingnuts vibrate easily, causing blades to lose position and airflow to become out of balance. The Everlock handle features 11 stops for unparalleled positive-locking control, the company says. 

Mestek Machinery featured all of its machinery at its booth, which created a busy and loud atmosphere. The company showed its ISM by Lockformer Max-Stitch 1.6i, a single-wire stitch welder.

Ecco Manufacturing’s booth featured a sheet metal umbrella. This was a play on the “Windy City” location.

The DMI Cos. had all of their brands under one booth at the expo. Their brands include Ductmate Industries, GreenSeam Industries, AireTechnologies and Linx Industries.

At CPS Products Inc.’s booth at the expo, the company its TrR650W wireless recovery machine, CC220EW enhanced wireless scale and the VPW/VP15W wireless vacuum on display.

The Duro Dyne booth featured their specially painted Warrior sheet metal machinery, which it used to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project charity. Officials were auctioning the PBF510, FPP4 and MF12-A combo, and the FDCC Connector Cradle. The company donated $1 to the charity every time the hashtag “#DuroDyneWarrior” was used on social media. According to the company’s website, the auction collected $28,343. A “warrior wall” at the booth contained names of military veterans or those currently serving.

Armacell, the maker of Armaflex, closed cell insulation, featured its new Tubolit W LS pipe insulation, available in multiple lengths. The Tubolit W LS pipe insulation is polyethylene insulation for plumbing lines, in semi-slit and self-seal closure, officials said. Their booth featured live product demonstrations and engineer technical presentations.

At the Meyer Machine booth, President Jimmy Meyer spoke about the company’s Elec Trak I, which is a portable duct cleaning vacuum. According to company officials, the product is ideal for condominium and attic furnace jobs.

The Vicon Machinery booth had attendees walking the red carpet while exploring their booth full of the company’s sheet metal machinery.

Thermaduct revealed its new Thermaround, a spiral duct alternative.

Zonefirst displayed its new HVAC zoning product that works with wireless Ecovent Systems.

Kingspan had its KoolDuct System on display at the expo. This product is a pre-insulated rectangular HVAC ductwork system that is 13 feet with zero connections.

Shortridge Instruments, Inc. had its Flow Hood, an air balancing instrument, featured at the expo. 

Gripple’s Fast Trak Rapid Rigid Support was at the expo. The support is a pre-fabricated system that removes the need to cut rod or strut on-site.

Rotobrush brought its AirPlusXP duct cleaning machine to the expo. Officials said the machine offers 30 percent more vacuum power when compared to the company’s original AirPlus.

Kanomax displayed its new duct air leakage tester. The DALT 6900, according to officials, meets and exceeds SMACNA HVAC standards.

Advance Cutting Systems had its Jet Liner II at the show. The company explained how duct liner cutting worked with the system.

Alan Manufacturing displayed its fresh air intake system. The VCS control panel of the system regulates the intake of fresh air to meet the ASHRAE 62.2 standard, according to officials.

Trimble had their new VR headset at the AHR Expo. Associate editor Lauren Tucci-Howey was able to try out the device. The hard hat, which works in conjunction with the Trimble Connect for HoloLens app, which can be used for training purposes or to compare plans against completed work, officials said.