I often think back to March 2015 and one of life’s better experiences – the day I spent visiting the NAD Klima factory in Sherbrooke, Quebec. I received a call a week or so earlier from a good buddy Chris who works in the HVAC Sales trade – asking me if I would like to visit the factory (possibly) and oh: just so you know, we will be travelling via a privately leased Cessna Citation (absolutely). So early on the morning of March 19th I drove to Ottawa International Airport and headed to an area I had never been before – where the private jets reside. Entering the small office area I was greeted at a reception desk with smiles and a newspaper – you can wait in the lounge for the others to arrive. It was a bright and clear blue day and a glance out the window revealed our chariot for the day, all gleaming white in the early morning sun. After a short while my peers arrived and after a brief chat with the pilot and copilot, the six of use were able to walk out to the aircraft with a refreshing lack of security checks.
Having never been in a small passenger jet before, this was an exciting experience I assure you. These aircraft are strikingly small in diameter, made very obvious by the way Chris didn’t quite fit into his seat without leaning a bit into the aisle. Another thing that was striking was the lack of any locked door separating us from the cockpit – I was able to turn around and speak with the pilot easily, his seat being only about 6 feet away from mine. And then there was the take-off – the thrust-to-weight ratio has to be experienced to be believed because this thing took off like a rocket – the take off roll was short and the ascent was steep and fast.
Getting back to business, we weren’t there just for fun and games – this was a trip to visit the NAD factory, and primarily learn about the NAD High-Induction line of diffusers. Before this trip I confess I knew little about these and was keen to see why I should use them. We were picked up from the tiny Sherbrooke airport and driven to the factory in a large SUV – and I was immediately reminded how driving styles differ in Ontario and Quebec. The Citation was not the only vehicle having impressive speed on this day. Soon after arriving at the factory we were settled into a fine meeting room decked out with product and multimedia. Seated around the large table, we were taken through all aspects of the NAD diffuser and what makes it special. I was impressed to hear about its virtually self-balancing characteristics, excellent performance at variable air volume conditions, and high customer satisfaction statistics. We were then shown around the factory which is cleverly kitted out with a number of test rigs at high level that demonstrate (with the aid of smoke generators) the induction and throw characteristics of the various diffuser models. By the end of our time in the factory, I had decided that there simply is no good reason NOT to use diffusers of this type – and my HVAC design work since then takes full advantage.
The drive back to the airport was equally hair-raising and on entering the Citation for the flight home, we were all happy when the copilot opened a cupboard that divulged all manner of in-flight goodies like shots of whiskey and a regular smorgasbord of snacks. This was a fine way to wind down what was a spectacular day out with my peers, some of whom are shown below on the flight home.