100 Years and Still Finishing

March 8, 2010
Singular focus keeps finishing cell builder thriving
Aerospace turbine blade deburring at Acme Manufacturing.
Acme Manufacturing’s centerless grinding for cylinders.

Robotic polishing for knees at Acme Manufacturing in Auburn Hills, MI.

Family-owned Acme Manufacturing Co. joins an exclusive group of companies this year, celebrating its 100th anniversary. Entering its second century in the manufacturing technology market, ISO 9001:2008-certified Acme Manufacturing says its focus on providing engineered finishing solutions — for buffing, polishing, grinding, centerless grinding, deburring and superfinishing — is the secret of its success.

In action, that singular focus involves a constant effort to find and invest in new automation and control technologies, to achieve optimal efficiency in part handling techniques or finishing media.

“Four generations of my family have owned and lead this company, and we appreciate the dedication of all the talented people who have worked with us, many having spent the major portion of their career at Acme, with over 60% of our employees having been with the company in excess of ten years,” explained Fritz Carlson, president of the Auburn Hills, MI, shop. “We also thank our global customer base who have helped us to grow and prosper. Today, over 70% of our business comes from outside the U.S. and we sell to about ten different industries.”

Acme Manufacturing reports it has installed tens of thousands of robotic cells and machines operating in 35 countries. This has helped Acme to compile a “knowledge base” for finishing media, process and automation technology, which has been applied to an extraordinary range of finished products over the past century, These include Model T headlight bezels, cookware, plumbing and automotive bumpers as well as jet engine components, medical implants, and components for nuclear fuel and alternative energy processing.

Acme installations also process tube and bar stock (centerless grinding), as well as flat stock (strip and coil grinding.)

Chairman Glen Carlson said: “Our unique value proposition is simple: we provide cost-effective automated finishing systems that help to reduce our customers manufacturing costs and reduce the need for them to seek offshore outsourcing. Whether it is a centerless grinder, a coil grinder or a robotic finishing solution, our solutions help to drive down costs and assist manufacturers in being more competitive.”