In Its Domain

In Its Domain
HYDMECH / HQ: Woodstock, Ontario / Jim Hutchinson, director of customer service: “For years,
band sawing was always considered a necessary evil but now is being looked at as a profit center.”
Rick Arcaro explains. “So from the 70s
to 80s and into the 90s, this business
just grew tremendously.”
That growth was noticed by investment group MEP, which purchased HYDMECH in 2007 and introduced it to the world.
“This really is a success story that
started on a piece of paper with a few
guys in a garage and today is a global
corporation,” Arcaro says. “We have
four manufacturing sites in Woodstock, Ontario; Arkansas; China and
Pergola, Italy.”
Continuous Improvement
hydmech can deliver stock
or custom solutions to
meet a variety of band
sawing needs.
In Its Domain
hydmech leverages its engineering to achieve
worldwide brand recognition. by jamie morgan
HYDMECH isn’t just “known”
in the band saw market, it created it
and remains a leading provider of the
manufacturing technology today. In
fact, it recently was named the No. 1
sawing equipment brand for service
centers by Metal Center News, which
is pretty remarkable considering
that band sawing was not its chosen
industry when Stan Jasinski founded
the company in 1978.
Jasinski, who immigrated to Ontario from Poland, was an engineer
by trade and founded HYDMECH
as an engineering consulting firm
specialized in hydraulic and forestry
equipment. The only issue was that
Jasinski was hard pressed to find a NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2014
saw that fit his customers’ needs, so
he leveraged his engineering knowhow and built his own mitering saw,
not knowing that he would actually
kick off a completely new business
for HYDMECH. In 1980, the company switched focus and has never
looked back. Today, HYDMECH is a
global manufacturer of band saws,
cold saws and material handling
equipment that can be used as standalone pieces or integrated systems.
“The way this industry and technology has involved is that the circular
sawing market dominated the business, but now metal sawing has advanced and surpassed that business,”
Vice President of Sales and Marketing
HYDMECH’s growth and success,
however, are not exclusively tied
to its standing as first to market.
Instead, the company’s strength
has been its eagerness to adapt to
its customers’ changing needs and
integrate user feedback into its
designs. This led to the company
launching into the sawing market
with three models to now producing 50. When it comes to many of its
products, Arcaro explains that although the basic concepts and uses
have changed little, the incremental
improvements made over the years
have consistently edged up the technology’s performance.
“If you look at the automotive
business, cars are the staple product
and have been the same but now instead of manual seats and windows,
you have automatic seats and windows and you continue to move up
the line,” Arcaro says. “Band saws
are the same way. Although the
technology hasn’t changed, the entry-level machine, which is our S-20,
is still being refined, designed and
built around consumer needs. The
S-20 has now created this commodity-type market.”
HYDMECH has been able to take
hydmech’s sales consultants
can help clients resolve
bottlenecks and increase
a sophisticated technology and
design fairly standardized products.
Whereas many of its competitors
deal primarily in custom-made products, HYDMECH has taken the opposite route to become a volume manufacturer. A competitor might build
one or two at a time, but HYDMECH
builds 10 and 85 to 90 percent of its
existing product are stock products
available for immediate delivery. It’s
not exactly a one-saw-fits-all scenario, but with a portfolio of 50 products,
HYDMECH shows a good probability
LENOX and HYDMECH Synergies Deliver Savings
to Customers Leading band sawing manufacturers LENOX®
and HYDMECH are passionate about lowering customers’ operational costs and maximizing sawing efficiency. Working together,
the two companies share key insights to develop features that improve productivity on the shop floor. Drawing on the insight that
when completing a cut, it is important not to pull the blade back
through the material in a way that damages the blade’s teeth,
HYDMECH developed machines that separate the cut piece of
metal to protect the teeth when the blade returns to the “home”
position. By preventing tooth tip damage, the LENOX blade
is able to run longer, provide smoother finishes on cut parts,
and cut straighter. Collaborating on insights and development
ensures that LENOX and HYDMECH will continue to provide
innovative benefits to the metalworking industry. NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2014
of having an existing saw that will
meet its customers’ needs.
“Building in volume doesn’t necessarily take you out of the customers’ needs,” Arcaro explains. “In
most cases when a customer comes
to us, they have an idea of what they
want, but don’t know exactly what
they need. That’s where our regional managers come into place because
they are true sales consultants, not
just order takers.
“They can go into a client’s facility, recognize an application need
or bottleneck and offer a one-stopshop machine with the right sawing
capabilities complete with material
handling. They can install it, show
you how to use it and how to make
money with it.”
rector of customer service, says
its customers are beginning to see
band saws as a key aspect of their
overall businesses.
“Customers are becoming more
sophisticated and embracing technology,” Hutchinson says. “For
years, band sawing was always considered a necessary evil but now is
being looked at as a profit center.”
HYDMECH recently sat down
with one of its clients to discuss the
top-5 areas of concern challenging
service centers today and ways to
address them. These are:
1. Process bottlenecks
2. Resource allocation
3. Training and maintaining talent
4. Customer service
5. Managing cost
Here to Serve
HYDMECH has strived to address
these concerns with its products.
For instance, the company designs
each solution with the goal of offer-
At HYDMECH, helping customers
earn more profit has always been
the focus, and Jim Hutchinson, di-
ing the best-cost-per-cut. Arcaro explains that this process considers a variety of factors.
“It’s about the quality and how much money you can
make on your product, that’s what we mean by best-costper-cut,” Arcaro says. “If I can run a premium blade that
a competitor cannot that puts more parts on the floor
per hour, that’s best-cost-per-cut. If I can cut more parts
squarer and straighter than the competition, resulting
in less cleanup, that’s best-cost-per-cut. If I can create
equipment that doesn’t take a skilled worker but can be
used by someone trained in-house so you don’t have to
pay extra wages, that’s best-cost-per-cut.”
A Better Fit
Eight years ago, HYDMECH tweaked the nature of its
designs to further mark its products as offering the bestcost-per-cut. Rather than full fabrication, HYDMECH
began using castings on its saws and the switch has
reaped multiple benefits. First, castings can be machined
to tighter tolerances as opposed to having a skilled welder create components manually.
Arcaro explains that HYDMECH removes “grey manufacturing” where parts have to be adjusted to fit. With
castings, “it either fits or doesn’t’ fit,” he stresses. “The
employee can grab the part off the shelf, put it together
and go to the next one so it really cuts down on our assembly hours.”
HYDMECH also found that the castings resulted in superior performance. They cut faster and are much more
quiet, which helps manufacturers increase their safety.
The low decibel level eliminates the need for hearing
protection gear.
“We’ve started to blend castings into our product
lines,” Arcaro says. “We started with each family group
and progressively worked our way through each lineup.
It’s been an ongoing process to do it, but now we are well
ahead of the game.”
The castings do have their limitations, though. Castings work well up to a certain size. After that, fabrication is the better option. HYDMECH can deftly switch
between the two thanks to its in-house ability in engineering, assembling and product support. And its expanded service division can handle after-sale services
for customers. It also manufactures many components
in-house and sources components from third parties, always looking for parts that can be found globally.
“We have machines on all continents and we have to
find parts that are available on all continents,” Arca-
ro says. “We go through globalization sourcing of parts
so if someone in Australia needs a bearing, they are not
strapped into one brand that’s only in North America.
We use standard industry components that you can swap
for alternative brands if you need to. Our customers like
having that accessibility to parts.”
Using standard components for its equipment is just
one of the ways HYDMECH responds to its customers’
demands. Because the company has engineers around
the globe, it can monitor worldwide trends and leverage
best practices across its entire operation. That ability
has turned a humble North American operation into a
global force in manufacturing.
“Our company is globally recognized and that’s a great
attribute,” Arcaro explains. “We have brand recognition
in North America, but to be able to go to Taiwan and Japan and sell a North American product or to go to Europe
and sell North American products that can compete with
their domestic product really speaks to the evolution of
Published by Phoenix Media Corporation Tel: 312.676.1101 Fax: 312.676.1280
On behalf of HYDMECH © 2015 Phoenix Media Corporation. All rights reserved.
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