Barnes Group Inc., the holding company for multiple aerospace and industrial manufacturing companies, plans to cease operations at its Saline, Mich., plant by midyear. The operation mainly produces automotive engine valve springs, which Barnes described as “a highly commoditized product.”
In internal combustion engines, valve springs are installed to keep engine valves closed when they are not actuated by a camshaft. They are attached to the valve stem ends, seating within spring retainers.
Associated Spring produces various engineered spring and precision metal components, including mechanical springs, wire forms, washers, reed and flapper valves, precision stampings and assemblies, for automotive, aerospace and defense, diesel powertrain, energy, telecom/electronics, and several other markets.
Barnes Group stated that “changing market dynamics and increased customer demands for commodity pricing” had prompted several customers to shift their purchases of springs to other suppliers, which prompted the decision to close the operation in Saline.
The plant employs about 50 workers.
Barnes stated that it would incur 2014 pretax charges worth approximately $8 million for the closure.
Beyond Associated Spring, its holdings include Associated Spring Raymond, Heinz Hänggi, Männer, Nitrogen Gas Products, Seeger-Orbis, and Synventive, which supply components and services to industrial and aerospace manufacturers. It has over 60 locations worldwide, and more than 4,300 employees.