Bob and Dorothy Puls took a chance way back in 1977. It was then that Bob decided to leave his job as a production manager for a growing screw machine business in northeast Ohio and start his own company. He saw a need in the Cleveland area for an induction heat-treating facility that focused on high-volume work. The answer was Zion Industries.

Today, 38 years later, Zion Industries has approximately 100 employees at three locations (all of which are ISO/TS 16949 certified): Valley City, Ohio; Grand Ledge, Mich.; and Hildebran, N.C. Bob Puls Jr., Bob and Dorothy’s son, opened Zion Industries’ North Carolina facility in 2000. He returned to Ohio in 2003 to take over the role of president. The Michigan plant started production in January 2005. The company provides induction services – including heat treating, annealing, tempering and brazing – to primarily the automotive, lawn and garden and hand-tool industries.

One thing that sets the company apart from the competition is that it is fully self-sufficient. As Puls Sr. did 38 years ago, Zion Industries still designs and engineers its induction equipment and systems. It also makes its own tooling and induction coils in-house, most of which are dedicated specifically to a particular customer’s production program. This all means that it does not have to rely or wait on third-party sources to meet demanding deadlines. Zion Industries is able to operate this way because of its employees’ wealth of industry knowledge and depth of professional experience.

Zion Industries typically works with parts that are able to be picked up by hand, usually 40 pounds or less. The company is capable, however, of processing shafts up to 60 inches in length. It is currently in production on a 12 million piece-per-year project, where it processes one piece every second. As for equipment, Zion Industries has a system that is used to process more than 2,000 fasteners per hour. Throughout the entire organization, the company has more than 30 induction machines ranging in power from 5-300 kw and frequencies from 3-450 khz. It can handle volumes from single-piece process flow to fully automated systems.

The company isn’t dedicated only to induction services. Zion Industries offers magnetic particle inspection services, prototype development and consulting services. It also, from time to time, receives requests to build induction material-handling equipment.

Having three separate locations has proven to be extremely beneficial. If a catastrophic event were to occur at one plant, Zion Industries can switch production to another plant until repairs are made. This minimizes the potential for any downtime. The company’s induction machines are designed to be portable, so it can transport equipment around within buildings or from plant to plant. Each facility operates on the exact same system, so any company employee can walk into any site any day of the week and immediately be productive.  Zion Industries operates three shifts a day at each plant.

It’s impressive how far Zion Industries has come in a relatively short time frame. The company recently doubled the size of its North Carolina plant and kicked off production with dual automated induction systems. It also recently put a specially designed system into service at its Michigan facility.

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