What started out as a small captive operation has turned into something much, much more.
Trojan Heat Treat (THT) was established in 1959 by George Petredean, who was a charter member of the American Foundry Society. Originally, the business served as a captive heat treat for Petredean’s Calhoun Foundry. Things changed in 1980, however, when THT transitioned into a commercial operation under the leadership of Ron Di Salvio, who has been with the company ever since (that’s 38 years) and still serves as president.
In March 2005, THT was acquired by Heat Treating Services Corporation of America (HTS), making it Plant 4 of HTS operations. The choice to sell the business was part of an exit strategy plan already in place as Petredean was preparing for retirement. The company entertained quite a few potential buyers but settled on Heat Treating Services, which, according to Di Salvio, “has proven to be the right choice.”
When THT first opened its doors in Homer, Mich., the company operated one pusher furnace line with three employees in a 3,300-square-foot building. Today, the MTI member has 50 employees and eight furnace lines (three belt, three pusher and two car bottom) in 64,000-square feet in two buildings located across the street from each other. This equipment is capable of processing 261 tons of forgings and castings per day.
THT processes iron castings and steel forgings for the automotive, military, heavy equipment and construction industries. Services provided include annealing, normalizing, stress relieving and ISO thermal annealing. The company’s in-line recorders are essential to its operations by documenting furnace cycles for customers.
In February 2008, THT increased capacity with the addition of a furnace line from BeaverMatic. The tip-up-type furnace is 40 feet long x 8 feet wide x 8 feet high with a 90,000-pound load capability. In just over three months from installation, over 7 million pounds of product was annealed with a substantial improvement seen in work flow and throughput by stacking and configuring baskets, trays and castings to process daily, back-to-back loads weighing 70,000-90,000 pounds.
THT provides more than heat-treatment services. The company operates three 22-cubic-foot Wheelabrators. These machines use steel shot to remove rust, discoloration, flash, burrs and any other undesirable surface spots from parts. Shot blasting leaves a decorative finish without compromising the integrity of the part.
Today, 59 years after starting up, THT excels through strategic partnerships with its customers –
working together to operate more effectively. And by running larger loads, reducing personnel and improving efficiencies, the company has maintained competitive pricing and has been able to absorb much of the increased energy and alloy costs.
As for the future, THT is in the process of combining all electrical services from the two buildings into one metered operation and converting all plant lighting to LED. The company is also considering a project that would connect the two sites. The Homer Village council has already agreed to an abatement that would allow the combination. This project would allow THT to add more furnace equipment and hire more workers.
Visit www.trojanheattreat.com for more information on Trojan Heat Treat.