2017, Build U, Ideal Contracting, Intern

Week #9 – MPG – Milkey

Ghost town at MPG… I pulled into the proving grounds and it seemed as though I was the only one on site, until I heard the faint sound of a lonesome dump truck whiz by like a ghost in my shadows. It’s shut down week here at the proving grounds so that means that all GM employees get a full week off. They might be on a beach somewhere warm but that means that it is our time get dirty and get to work! Crews are very busy hustling around getting various different jobs done. Paving packages are huge right now as they are tearing out test tracks, parking lots, sidewalks, service roads, and curbing to fix and replace as so we do not disrupt GM personnel while they are on site. Long hours are put in by the men and women out in the field, which is really appreciated by all!

One of the projects I am working on is the corrosion booth coatings; this is where cars are placed in chambers at 100% humidity, at a high temperature to enable corrosion. Our task was to strip down some portions of the walls and floors, prep, then re-coat with a new approved product. We had a small bump in the road with booth 5 on Wednesday. Once crews began to strip the walls and some flooring it was discovered that the flooring has delaminated and was coming apart with standing water between the layers. The only solution we had was to strip the whole floor and recoat the whole thing, this will come as an emergency cost of $32,000. It is crazy to see how an issue can escalate so quickly and the repair costs associated with it climb as well.

The area where you can see the top layer separate from the bottom layer. This will be replaced with 30Mill of new product on the floors.


We did a walk through on Friday at one of the testing facilities to bid out 14 new drainage basins for the cars to drip water on preventing ice buildup during the winter as well as standing water when it rains. It was interesting to watch Paul run around and show me different areas he has previously done, and things he has worked on years ago. He mentioned to me that over all the years he has been here at MPG he has had the opportunity to work on every single building on the grounds. That is quite the accomplishment and it gives me something to look forward to as I continue my career, being able to go back on, and explain to younger generations the things I had the opportunity to work on and build.

Weekly Hawaiian shirt update: No major changes in my continued quest. I sported a brown, red flowered Hawaiian shirt on Friday, which seemed to have good reviews from the colleagues. Every once and a while I catch my self-dreaming of how festive it would look if Ideal held “Hawaiian Friday” where everyone can wear an ideal logo Hawaiian shirt!

Again thank you to everyone who has been helping me along the way. I really enjoy working with Ideal and the atmosphere that surrounds it. I look forward to visiting some sites soon and see where else Ideal Contracting is working. Next week will be quite adventurous, as many things will be happening! Check in next week to see where I am!


Stay Safe,


Andrew Milkey

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