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Pete Lien & Sons, Inc Scholarship Announced

Scholarship InformationWe are glad to roll out a new benefit to our employees.  Children and grandchildren of Pete Lien & Sons full-time employees are eligible to apply for a $2,500 scholarship per semester.  The details and application forms are located at the link below.  If you have children or grandchildren entering or enrolled in a college or a trade school, this scholarship program should be of interest.   

 

  We are looking forward to helping two worthy candidates achieve their dream of a good education.

 

Scholarship Info & Forms

History2

Through the history of the company, the Lien's core business has been mining, primarily limestone. The original quarry that Pete bought from his supplier has been mined and reclaimed. The company has purchased additional reserves and currently has active mines in northern Colorado, western South Dakota, and eastern Wyoming. The mined product supplies the company's lime, pulverized limestone, and concrete plants, local road contractors, and local homeowners.
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Today

Today, Pete Lien & Sons is an integral part of many communities across South Dakota, Wyoming, and Colorado. Over 400 men and women are proud to be called employees of the company. Chuck Lien still serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors, almost 70 years after he and his brother and their father purchased a small quarry on the outskirts of Rapid City and began a business with the marketing motto, "If you need a little or a lot, call Pete Lien & Sons." The company is still entirely owned by members of the Pete Lien family, with several of Pete's grandchildren directly involved in the day-to-day operations of the business, including his grandson and namesake, Peter C. Lien, the company president.

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For Over 65 Years

Pete Lien and Sons have proudly served the Black Hills and midwest regions for over 65 years.

  • History
  • Today

history 1Pete Lien & Sons began as a small rock quarry operation, located on the foothills of the Black Hills, near Rapid City SD. The company was founded by Pete Lien and his two sons, Chuck and Bruce, in 1944. While the company owed its early success to business generated by nearby Rapid City Army Air Base (Later Ellsworth Air Force Base) and later to the building of the interstate highway system, it has grown through the careful acquisition of reserves and existing companies into a privately held, multi-million dollar corporation with holdings though out a three-state region.

Throughout the history of the company, the Lien's core business has been mining, primarily limestone. The original quarry that Pete bought from his supplier has been mined and reclaimed. The company has purchased additional reserves and currently has active mines in northern Colorado, western South Dakota, and eastern Wyoming. The mined product supplies the company's lime, pulverized limestone, and concrete plants, local road contractors, and local homeowners.
A00061In 1956, Pete Lien & sons, entered the sand and gravel business with the purchase of Birdsall Sand & Gravel. Initially composed of one sand plant on the Cheyenne River near Wasta, SD, the business has continued to grow through the years with the development of additional plants in western South Dakota central Wyoming, and southern Colorado. These plants produce high quality sand and gravel and provide aggregates for the company's ready mix concrete operations, in addition to providing materials for road and highway projects.

A00065In 1961, a decision was made to enter the lime business with the erection of a lime plant at the Rapid City Quarry. Bruce Lien bought most of the key component parts from a dismantled operation on the west coast. The original kiln was eight and one half feet in diameter and one hundred and sixty three feet long and remained in production until its replacement in 1993. The Liens expanded their lime production in 1992 with a production facility in northern Wyoming. Further expansion of the lime business occurred in 1996 with the installation of a hydrated lime plant in northern Colorado. Finally, in 2010, a brand new, state-of-the-art plant and kiln were installed at the Rapid City complex.

A00162In 1966, the company bought its first ready mix concrete operation, Central Mix, in Rapid City. Six years later, in 1972, Rapid City suffered a devastating flood. The rebuilding efforts after the flood provided a steady need for both concrete and rock products. The ready mix operation continued to grow with acquisitions of plants around the Black Hills in western South Dakota, Gillette, WY, Steamboat Springs, CO, and Colorado Springs, CO.


In 1970, the company purchased a local cement block plant, Dakota Block, located on the southern end of the Lien's original quarry in Rapid City. This plant now makes concrete block for construction projects throughout the Dakotas, Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado and Montana. Their success has seen the operation diversify into the production of Versa-Lok, Willow Creek Pavers, and Boulder Creek Stone.

Today, Pete Lien & Sons is an integral part of many communities across South Dakota, Wyoming, and Colorado. Over 400 men and women are proud to be called employees of the company. Chuck Lien still serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors, almost 70 years after he and his brother and their father purchased a small quarry on the outskirts of Rapid City and began a business with the marketing motto, "If you need a little or a lot, call Pete Lien & Sons." The company is still entirely owned by members of the Pete Lien family, with several of Pete's grandchildren directly involved in the day-to-day operations of the business, including his grandson and namesake, Peter C. Lien, the company president.

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FAQs

View some of our frequently asked questions.


Lime FAQs

  • What is the difference between lime and limestone?

    Limestone is calcium carbonate mined from the ground and crushed for various end uses. When high calcium limestone is burned or calcined in a lime kiln, quicklime (calcium oxide) is produced. Quicklime can then be reacted with water to produce hydrated lime (calcium hydroxide). Quicklime has a much higher available calcium carbonate equivalent percentage when compared to limestone and a slightly higher value compared to hydrated lime. Generally speaking, the calcium carbonate equivalent values are as follows:

    Limestone (calcium carbonate): 80-100%
    Quicklime (calcium oxide): 150-175%
    Hydrated Lime (calcium hydroxide): 120-135%

  • How is lime made?

    Lime is produced through the calcination of limestone (calcium carbonate) in a lime kiln at temperatures at or above 2000 degrees Fahrenheit.  The product of calcination of high calcium limestone is "quicklime" or calcium oxide.  Quicklime in turn can be reacted with water to produce hydrated lime (calcium hydroxide).

  • What are common uses for lime?

    Lime is a versatile product with many end uses. Some of the many uses include flue gas desulfurization in the coal fired power industry, water treatment (lime softening), anti-strip additive for asphalt hot mix, corn stover treatment for cattle feed, soil stabilization, drilling mud applications in the oil industry, or pH adjustment in various industrial or water treatment processes. If you have any questions regarding a potential lime application, one of our technical sales representatives would be happy to assist.

  • How should lime be handled?

    Lime should be handled with care and not until the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) has been reviewed.  See the products tab of our website to obtain an MSDS for our lime.  Lime should be stored in silos or an area where it is not susceptible to moisture.  Quicklime (calcium oxide) can be stored for short periods of time in 1-ton super sack totes.  Hydrated lime at Pete Lien & Sons is also bagged in 50-lb bags.   

  • How can I obtain a lime certification?

    Contact your local sales representative to obtain a certification for your project. We are able to provide certifications for water treatment verification, anti-strip applications by all State and Federal Transportation Departments, or a variety of other uses.

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Ground Calcium Carbonate FAQs

  • What are the Colorado Lien complex customer loading hours?

    a. Quarry: Monday – Friday: 7:00am – 3:00pm

    b. Fine Grind Plant: Monday – Friday: 24 hours a day; Saturdays: Open until 2pm; Sunday: Open at 8:00am through the day/night.

  • Do we sell to the public?

    Yes

  • What are the directions to Owl Canyon Complex?

    The complex is located 17 miles north of Fort Collins on Highway 287, ½ mile north of mile marker 365, and 1 mile south of "The Forks" in Livermore, CO.

  • What is the difference between Lime and Ground Calcium Carbonate (GCC)

    a. Lime is produced by heating limestone in a kiln to change the mineral into calcium oxide, and calcium carbonate (aka: pulverized limestone or fine grind) is produced by pulverizing high-grade calcium minerals, in Pete Lien & Sons' case limestone, into a ground granular or power sized finished product.

    b. Pete Lien & Sons sells both Lime and Calcium Carbonate, but each product is produced at different locations.

    c. Lime is produced out of our Rapid City Complex, Frannie Complex, and Colorado Hydrate Complex, while Calcium Carbonate is produced out of our Owl Canyon Complex.

  • Does Pete Lien & Sons sell AgLime

    Yes, the name 'AgLime' is a bit deceiving because it is not lime, instead it is agricultural crushed limestone. Pete Lien & Sons sells 'AgLime' out of the Owl Canyon Complex via Ground Calcium Carbonate.

  • What do you mean by ‘Fine Grind’?

    a. Fine Grind is the process of pulverizing limestone

    b. There are many different names for Fine Grind material. They include; pulverized limestone/mineral, ground calcium carbonate (GCC), cal. carb., mineral filler, and AgLime to name a few. To complicate things further, each fine grind manufacturer has a different brand name for pulverized limestone.

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Sand & Gravel FAQs

  • Do you have round river rock – used for landscaping and rock gardens?

    Yes, our sand & gravel plants offer round river rock that is double washed and is used for landscaping purposes. It is available from the sand & gravel plants or local retailers in the Rapid City market.

  • When does it make sense to purchase from Pete Lien & Sons vs. local retailer's for sand & gravel?

     Our feeling is that the sand & gravel plants are setup best for contractors and/or full truck loads. Anything less than a truck load of material, it makes more sense to purchase from local retailer's.

  • Do you do delivery?

    All operations perform delivery of our products. We utilize our own trucks along with local contractors. The customer is also welcome to pick up the material with their truck or trucking contractor.

  • Where are you located?

    a. Wasta

    b. Creston

    c. Oral

    d. Sundance

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Crushed Stone & Ore FAQs

  • How many tons of rock do I need for my project?

    The tonnage of stone required for a given area varies by stone type, depth, and compaction efforts.  The calculator provided on our website is based on placement of compacted base course.  Other types of stones vary in unit weight and therefore will require more or less tonnage per volume of space.  The first step regardless of product is to calculate the volume to be filled.  This is completed by multiplying the length x width x depth.  All measurements must be in the same units (ie. typically inches, feet, or yards).  The volume can then be multiplied by the appropriate unit weight.  Some typical unit weights are provided below.  For assistance with your calculations or with questions, please contact your local Pete Lien & Sons aggregate sales representative.

  • How many tons of riprap are in one cubic yard?

    The conversion for riprap varies by size but generally speaking, a conversion of 2 tons per cubic yard is sufficient. Limestone has an in situ unit weight of approximately 160 pounds per cubic foot but voids on average reduce the unit weight of riprap to closer to 150 pounds per cubic foot.

  • What are the benefits of limestone ledge rock versus alluvial products?

    Limestone is a very clean fractured stone. It has minimal dirt/clay particles and is crushed thereby providing good structural characteristics. This makes it a very stable product that compacts well and maintains stability even in the presence of moisture. Limestone products provide added benefits to construction projects because it drains well and maintains its strength even when heavily wetted due to rain or snow. This is a significant benefit over alluvial products that typically have to be dried, shaped and then re-compacted, or in some cases completely replaced after being inundated by moisture events. This is another reason that limestone is preferred under building foundations as an engineered fill in areas of highly plastic (high clay content) soils.

  • What does limestone cost?

    Please contact your local sales representative to inquire about our products and pricing.

  • Does Pete Lien & Sons deliver?

    Pete Lien & Sons sales representatives work closely with many local transportation companies in order to ensure that our customers have access to all of our products. We are happy to help arrange transportation for all project sizes. Please contact your local sales representative to discuss your delivery needs.

    For the Rapid City Quarry only, Pete Lien & Sons offers local delivery via the "Green & Yellows". Dump truck (15 ton or less) sized loads can be delivered by Pete Lien & Sons equipment on a first come, first served basis.

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Ready Mix Concrete FAQs

  • How much concrete do I need?

    It depends. Please use the concrete calculator to come up with an approximate amount in cubic yards.

  • Where do I get concrete from Pete Lien & Sons?

    We have plants in Colorado, Wyoming, and Western South Dakota. Please check out the map for a location near you.

  • How do I protect my concrete?

    There are many best practices to ensure a quality finish and durable concrete. They can be done while placing the concrete or after it is set. See our Concrete in Practice tips for more information.

  • How can I most effectively place my concrete?

    Pete Lien & Sons has concrete boom pumps available for the easiest placement.

  • What is concrete?

    Cement, rock, sand, water, and admixtures like air entrainers, water reducers, or retarders.

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Block Manufacturing FAQs

  • Where can I go to pick up river rock or sand in my pick up?

    River Rock, Sand, and Limestone are available for loading at the Block Division. We can also set up a delivery for larger loads directly to your site.

  • What sizes of river rock do you offer?

    We carry ½" x ¼" Pea Gravel, ¾" x 1" River Rock, and 1 ½" x 2" River Rock

  • What sizes of limestone do you offer?

    Base Course ¾" minus, 5/8" Clean, 1" Clean

  • Do you sell to the public?

    Yes. Sales of all Concrete Block, Retaining Wall and Pavers, Limestone, and Decorative Rock are available for retail sale at the Block Division located at 3292 Lien Street off of Deadwood Avenue. Hours of Operation are 7:30 AM to 4:30. In order to be loaded and out of the gate at 4:30 be sure to be in the yard by 4:00 PM.

  • What type of mortar should I choose for my project, and what do the mortar types indicate?

    Mortar types are chosen based on project requirements. There is a tradeoff between mortar strength and "workability" (or stickiness, ability to trowel and spread well). Stronger mortars (Type M, S) are harder to work with. Stronger mortars also tend to lead to more cracking problems in masonry units. The weakest mortars (Type O, K) are used primarily for historical masonry restoration work. It is usually best to choose the weakest (and in turn, the most workable) mortar appropriate for the job. The mortar type most recommended by industry standards is Type N. Type N falls exactly in the middle between all the other types in terms of strength and workability, meaning Type N provides the best of both worlds. Type N can be used in almost any masonry application, from structural masonry to veneer and adhered masonry. The most common alternate to Type N is Type S. Type S is slightly stronger than Type N, and is chosen in situations where higher structural strength and/or increased durability is required.

  • What kind of mortar should I use for stone veneer applications (aka Cultured Stone)?

    Manufactured stone veneer manufacturers for the most part recommend either Type S or Type N mortar for scratch coat, application, and joint grouting of stone veneer mortar. We recommended SPEC MIX Polymer Modified Stone Veneer Mortar, which is specially modified to enhance bond strength and durability, plus additional resistance to water penetration and damage/deterioration caused by weathering. Polymer Modified Stone Veneer Mortar also offers the best in workability and stickiness for the application process in stone veneer. Polymer Modified Stone Veneer Mortar exceeds all physical requirements of both Type S and Type N masonry mortar.

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