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EDCO YEAR IN REVIEW

The year 2019 marked Equipment Development Company’s 60th anniversary of its start as a division of a rental store in Silver Spring, Maryland. As we celebrated our history this year, we made several strides across our company to continue positioning ourselves for sustained success in the future.

“Everything we’ve done this year centers around EDCO’s vision and values of customer service, training, quality, safety and our commitment to American manufacturing,” Vice President of Operations Jason Stanczyk said. “The leaders of EDCO and the families that own it are constantly working to make sure our customers receive great value and our employees are taken care of,” Stanczyk said.

Products:

EDCO added two new machines to its line of professional swing equipment.

The new 20” Walk-Behind Downcut Saw (model DS-20) is essentially the same as the popular 18” DS-18 model, but has a larger capacity to cut up to 7-¾” for more versatility. The new 18” Economical Walk-Behind Downcut Saw is similar to the 14” KL-14 model, but has a larger blade capacity to cut up to 6-¾”.

The new saws: DS-20 (left) and KL-18 (right)

For the line of professional sawing equipment, there are new 14” and 18” diamond blades that are universal, meaning they can be used on both cured concrete and asphalt.

Training:

Late in 2018, EDCO began remaking its product training videos on SolidWorks, which allowed for animated looks and visuals that weren’t available with our previously used method of standard footage. We continued to add to that library of animated training videos in 2019 to give our customers more insight about the ins and outs of our machines.

Production:

On the manufacturing floor, EDCO purchased a new CNC (computer numerical control) lathe with live tooling to manufacture shafts and other parts for our machines. The new lathe is also user-friendly with “conversational programming” that allows for easier programming rather than having to input a complicated series of code.

Shipping:

After receiving feedback from our distributors about how we could reduce clutter in our shipping, EDCO adopted new packing methods. For small boxes containing parts and accessories, we abandoned packing peanuts in favor of packing paper to cushion the product. For our large machines, our shipping department uses crates instead of cardboard boxes. In addition to being easier for our distributors and customers, these changes are also more environmentally friendly.

EDCO Fabrication:

EDCO Fabrication, our contract fabrication division, also implemented new shipping practices to benefit customers. Using our ERP system, Made2Manage, we developed UPC barcodes to help organize what parts are being delivered, which is especially helpful for large deliveries.

Workforce:

In 2019, between the manufacturing division and contract fabrication division, EDCO’s total workforce eclipsed 100 employees. Four employees reached 30-year milestones with the company.

EDCO also continued its partnership with Frederick County Public Schools’ Career and Technology Center’s welding program, and hired a student as a full-time employee after his work study program was complete. In addition, EDCO is renewing its partnership with CTC’s video production program, which has provided three students that worked in the marketing department after graduation.

Marketing:

The marketing department continued its emphasis on content-based marketing for our family-owned manufacturing company.

EDCO continued to grow its presence on social media with its Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts. Additionally, we launched EDCO Life Magazine, a monthly online publication that spotlights EDCO’s employees, history, home and problem-solving ability, along with other happenings.

In the summer, we cleared out an old storage room perched above our manufacturing floor to create a dedicated space for multimedia. Stay tuned for new content in the future, such as podcasts, that we created in the studio now called “The Perch.”

Distribution:

In late 2018, EDCO debuted a distribution network to help facilitate our products and maintain our customer-dependent standard. During 2019, we added two new distributors to service the west coast, bringing the total from three to five.

Essex Silver Line West is our distributor for Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington. Placer Sales Associates joined the distribution network to serve California, Hawaii and Nevada.

With those two new distributors -- along with the original three: Midstates Distribution Inc., MTA Distributors and Big Eight Supply and Tool -- we’re continuing to ensure the customer experience with EDCO products remains the same as it has for the past 60 years.

Employee profile

Eric Myers "Coaching Tree"

In sports, a “coaching tree” takes on the shape of a family tree with other people branching off from an initial coach. Over the last five years at EDCO, a similar tree has formed with a group of young employees.

It began in 2014 when we hired a high school video intern named Eric Myers to assist the marketing department with training videos and other projects. Over the years, between attending college, Eric stayed with the company and worked in marketing and on the manufacturing floor in the powder coating department. Along with working at the company, he was also a vital part of recruiting new employees from his group of friends that became valuable parts of the EDCO team.

The first branch of the tree came in November 2016 when one of his friends asked if there was an opening. After Eric gave a recommendation, we hired Sterling Fogle to work in the fabrication department.

Another addition came a few months later when Eric and Sterling recommended to Sam Bittner tp apply for a job. After applying, and eventually securing the job, Sam worked in powder coating, as a delivery driver and in assembly.

The third branch off of the tree came in April 2017 when Zack Rockwood joined the EDCO team, working in the machine shop, where he operated a saw and worked on several of the CNC machines. Ed Turner became the fourth member of the coaching tree in July 2017, and he’s worked in powder coating, shipping, assembly and was promoted last year to Inventory Control Specialist.

Matthew Lenhart became the final member of the coaching tree in June 2018, deciding to join his friends at EDCO. Matthew works in the shipping department at EDCO and ensures all of your items arrive intact and on-time.

While these five became valuable parts of our team, we understand that sometimes life takes them in other directions with their aspirations. Eric attends the University of Maryland, and he is set to graduate in May 2020 and pursue a career in his field. Sterling left in the fall of 2018 to attend community college. Zack is set to begin the fire academy in pursuit of his dream to be a career firefighter. And Sam is leaving EDCO to attend boot camp as he joins the Marines.

EDco history decades series

Fabricating our future (The 2010s)

The 2010s decade saw changes, innovations, developments, and a new division of our company. Even as those changes transpired, we maintained our commitment to customer service, training, technology, and American-made quality.

Throughout our history, customers have remained the backbone of our operation and in the current decade we’ve expanded the ways that customers can access our products.

For over 50 years, our presence in the rental industry comprised our customer reach. That commitment to the rental industry remains, as industry professionals and people performing do-it-yourself projects can still find our products in rental stores all over the country.

In 2016 though, EDCO products, accessories, and parts were listed on an online store to be sold directly to customers. This online store allows customers who frequently use our machines and accessories to invest in our products, which still have the same durable build as before. The website is a one-stop shop for machines, accessories, and any necessary replacement parts over time.

In 2018, we unveiled a new distribution network for independent rental businesses. These businesses can now access our products through regional distributors in our distribution network, a system that provides lower shipping costs and pick-up options, local access to trained representatives, and expert advice in your area. What remained unchanged was the pricing structure and the support from EDCO online, over the phone, and in person.

With our growing customer reach, we implemented a standard to meet the increasing demand with shorter lead times. At our manufacturing facility in Frederick, Maryland, we committed to making at least 120 machines per week, a self-imposed manufacturing standard we coined “The 120+.”

Some of those machines we build encountered rebranding, as our milling machines became known as EDCO’s patented Crete-Planers® and our air-powered concrete removal and roughing machines became known as Crete-Crushers®.

Accessories for grinders also took on a new look, a trapezoidal look to be specific. Our line of award-winning Magna-Trap® accessories changed the game and made wedge-less grinding methods obsolete. These quick-change accessories that slide onto to discs qualify our Magna-Trap® grinders for stripping, grinding, and removal applications, depending on which accessory the grinder is equipped with.

To ensure that customers, both new and existing, know how to use all of our different product families in the most effective way possible, we rolled out a new training website, EDCOEd.com, which is a free training site complete with modules and certifications.

In addition to the changes in customer reach and product modifications, EDCO also opened a separate division to our operation. EDCO Fabrication was created in 2013 as a separate entity that opened our manufacturing abilities to a whole new realm of customers.

EDCO Fabrication offers laser cutting, CNC machining, forming, welding, powder coating, and assembly capabilities to other companies in need of metal parts or products. After years of success developing that division of our business, EDCO Fabrication moved to its own building– also in Frederick, Maryland– in 2017, which allows that part of our business to devote a singular focus to the clients who enlist our services.

Problem solving with edco

The Problem: Remove Glue from Concrete

The Solution: EDCO Magna-Trap Grinders & Magna-Blades

When replacing floor coverings, there’s another removal task after stripping away the original material. Oftentimes, the material used to install the prior floor covering is a thick, soft material such as glue or mastic.

These remnants need to be removed before beginning the installation process of the next floor covering. Old adhesives get in the way of a solid bond forming between the new flooring material to the subfloor.

Stripping away this material can be achieved with handheld tools that have sharp blades. But these handheld options require bending over, or work from an all-fours position.

Even with a long-handle attachment, scraping through the tacky coating can be a laborious task because of how tacky it is. For less wear and tear on the body, and faster production, grinders equipped with sharp accessories are the premier options.

EDCO’s Magna-Blades are grinder accessories equipped with carbide-tipped blocks, and they’re designed to strip away those thick, soft materials without grinding into the concrete surface. The carbide blocks can be rotated for maximum use before replacement is needed.

EDCO Magna-Blade

The Magna-Blades are part of EDCO’s Magna-Trap tooling options and fit all Magna-Trap grinders. Factors that help determine which grinder to use the Magna-Blades on include: desired efficiency, working area and power availability.

If the material is tacky, broadcast sand over the entire grinding area to help clump up the material when the Magna-Blades are stripping it away, and ensure the glue or mastic doesn’t smear. After the grinding is complete, sweep up the clumped up coating to complete the cleanup process.

After using the Magna-Blades for the tacky material, there may be solid deposits remaining on the floor. If that’s the case, change out the Magna-Blades for the Magna-Trap Dyma-Dot accessories and perform a quick pass to remove those remaining deposits and open the surface.

Our home - Frederick, md

Downtown Frederick Holiday Boats

For the fourth consecutive year, downtown Frederick’s Carroll Creek is illuminated with decorative boats sponsored by area businesses and organizations to light up the waterway and raise money for charitable organizations.

This year, there are 16 boats in the water and two on land in the city. The 18 boats are the most there’s been since the tradition started in 2016 with one boat.

The fleet of boats takes on many shapes and sizes, and creates quite the spectacle for locals and visitors walking along Carroll Creek. The 18th boat sits atop Brewer's Alley restaurant in downtown Frederick, perched just off its rooftop bar.

Each business or organization designs and constructs their boat to be placed in the creek in November. Then, people can vote for their favorite boats with monetary donations that go partly toward the charity that business or organization has chosen to represent.