Friday, March 09, 2001

Industry notes: Manufacturing

Toyota honoring suppliers

By Mike Boyer
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        AK Steel in Middletown and AP Technoglass Co. in Florence were among 21 companies earning top supplier awards from Toyota Motor Manufacturing North America in Erlanger.

        AK Steel, which supplies sheet steel for Toyota cars and trucks, received two superior awards, Toyota's highest, for quality and delivery. The steel company, the only Ohio supplier honored, has won eight superior and six excellent awards from Toyota since 1994. AP Technoglass won an excellent award for improved value.

        Other Kentucky suppliers honored were Ambrake Corp., an Elizabethtown brake supplier and Sumitomo Electric Wiring Systems, a Bowling Green wire harness supplier.

        Indiana suppliers recognized were ArvinMeritor Corp., an exhaust systems vendor, and NSK Corp., a Franklin wheel bearing supplier.

        It was the second major automotive supplier award received this week by AK Steel. The company said its Rockport, Ind., finishing plant also won Ford Motor Co.'s Q1 quality certification, the automaker's highest supplier award.

Conveyer makers combine operations

        A West Chester conveyor manufacturer, the Buschman Co., and a sister company, Mathews Conveyor in Danville, Ky., are combining into a new FKI Logistex Automation Division. Both companies are owned by British-based FKI Plc, a global material handling equipment company.

        John Westendorf, chief executive of the new Logistex Automation Division, said the move should have no impact on Buschman's 900 employees. Mathews employs about 400.

        Mr. Westendorf said the division's focus will be the warehouse-distribution center market.

Milacron to host training sessions

        Milacron Inc.'s Ferromatik North American facility in Batavia will host a series of training courses on injection molding and statistical process control provided by Paradigm International. The courses, which aren't specific to Milacron, will be led by Jeffery Humble, president of Paradigm and former professor of plastic engineering at Shawnee State University.

        New technology and a shortage of trained workers make it difficult for molders to maintain their skill levels, the company said. The two-day courses include both classroom and shop-floor instruction. For information call Susan Guy, Milacron training administrator, 536-2265 or e-mail

Johnson Controls honors steel company

        Southwestern Ohio Steel Inc. in Hamilton recently received the highest supplier award from Johnson Controls Inc. for its service last year.

        This is the second year in a row SOS has received the auto seat supplier's Gold Award for 100 percent on-time delivery and outstanding service and quality in supplying flat-rolled steel.

TechSolve teaches lean manufacturing

        TechSolve is offering a lean manufacturing simulation at its Dayton facility, 1900 Founder's Drive, on March 15. Lean manufacturing is a philosophy to use less space and equipment to produce goods in less time.

        For more information on the session, which will include a factory floor simulation to manufacture a product, call (800) 345-4482 or email

        Mike Boyer covers manufacturing for the Enquirer. Have news? Call him at 768-8494, e-mail at or fax 564-6991.


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