Measuring things you can't

About Us

Thinking outside the box, Doug Ursel developed tooling to measure either a stator or rotor diameter without having to remove it from the unit.  

Doug and Vanessa along with a local machining company, developed procedures and technology to reduce bottom ring align boring to 6 - 12hour shifts (3 days with day and night shifts).  PFTS's align boring method saves valuable time during a hydro turbine rebuild. Typically align boring takes 2+ weeks using traditional methods.  The align boring is usually on the critical path so time is money in this situation.

Vanessa developed a procedure for dimping the stay ring flange for stay ring flange grinding.  Typically in a hydro turbine rebuild, the stay ring flange (aka head cover seat flange), is usually found to be out of level.  Typically the customer wants this flange to be level so PFTS developed a procedure to dimple the flange to the required depth.  The millwrights then grind the flange down to the dimples.  As an example, the latest results on a 25' diameter stay ring flange using this method was +/-0.003" from the desired elevation after grinding.  This method can me used with any in-situ flange grinding; if the customer wants the surface to be ground planar but not level, PFTS can accomodate it.

Providing a diverse range of 3D measurement capabilities PFTS specializes in large volume high precision measurement with laser trackers but can also provide small volume high precision measurement with CMM arms, CAD to Part Inspections with point cloud scanning, and large 3D point cloud scanning to complete storage tank strapping tables, document as-built buildings or measure concrete or piping without the customer having to build scaffolding.

Alignment Engineers

Doug Ursel, P.Eng. (
A Mechanical Engineer and licensed electrician Doug has over 10 years in the Pulp and Paper industry in various positions including Maintenance Engineering Manager and PM Supt. Doug founded PFTS Precision Alignment in 2000.

Doug wrote a paper with Hal Turner of Manitoba Hydro for Hydrovision in 2006 discussing the procedural differences and the advantages of using a Laser Tracker over traditional methods on complete hydro unit overhauls. In writing their paper they discovered that using the laser tracker for all measurements on Manitoba Hydro Unit overhauls saved nearly three million dollars per unit.

Doug is usually working with a laser tracker in the field but he’s also done work with the CMM arms and the focus scanner. Doug is very innovative and thinks outside the box designing new concepts and procedures to develop any kind of measurement solution.

Vanessa Fontaine, P.Eng. (
A Mechanical Engineer that also has a Structural Engineering Technology diploma and a CAD Technology certificate from Red River College. Vanessa has been with PFTS from the beginning and operates all of the equipment with specialty in laser tracker measurement and large volume scanning. She’s also very knowledgeable with AutoCAD and operates the Polyworks and FARO Scene software (the post- processing software for the scanners).

Vanessa manages the part scanning, CAD to Part Analysis, and large point cloud scanning departments of PFTS while reviewing all of PFTS reports and providing quality control. With her years of working with the laser tracker, Vanessa is able to develop in-depth procedures for customers new with using the laser tracker or for customers that need to build coordinate systems for measuring something they are unfamiliar with.

Customer List

Abitibi Consolidated
ACME Welding Ltd
Air Liquide Canada
Alstom Hydro Canada
Andritz Hydro
Atlantic Packaging
Basic Machining
BC Hydro
Behlen Industries
Biovail Pharmaceutical
Canadian Air Force
Chinook Aviation
City of Winnipeg
CN Rail
CopperWeld LTV
Derksen Mechanical
Dynamic Machine
GE Energy Services 
GMB Heavy Industries
Hudson Bay Mining & Smelting
Louisiana Pacific
Manitoba Conservation
Manitoba Hydro
McElhanney Consulting
Meadow Lake OSB
Mercury Specialty Products
Millenium Mechanical
Motor Coach Industries
MTS Systems
National Electric Coil
New Flyer Industries
Norstar Industries
Ontario Power Generation
Peter Kiewit Sons Inc
Pollard Banknote
PCL Construction
Prairie Machine and Parts (PM&P)
Pritchard Machine
Remmele Engineering
Royal Canadian Mint
Standard Aero Ltd
Rio Tinto
Stelco Inc
Taj (TMIF) Industrial
Turbo-Gen Works
VA Tech - Hydro
Voith Hydro
Weldwood - West Fraser
Weyerhaeuser -Trus Joist