The new Ridgid North American distribution center in Cambridge, Ohio, is 50 percent bigger than the company's previous facility.

Ridge Tool opens new distribution center

ELYRIA, Ohio - Ridge Tool Co. has completed construction of its 125,000-square-foot Ridgid North American distribution center in Cambridge, Ohio.

According to the company, the new facility will enhance Ridge Tool's logistics capabilities and business practices to better serve customers.

The center is approximately 50 percent larger than Ridge Tool's previous facility.

"The expansion of our distribution center will help us provide superior customer service to our distribution partners," said Mark Downie, vice president of sales for Ridge Tool Co. "Ridge Tool's new expanded facility will streamline our distribution processes and improve our ability to provide products when and where our distribution partners need them."

The company also reports that the new facility will improve product availability information. Ridge Tool's new "Available-To-Promise" system provides delivery date information on readily available parts, products and backorders. Distributors can now check the status of their shipments any time by visiting www.rigidconnect.com.

The company also reports that the new facility will reduce receiving costs, simplify receiving, reduce carton damage and order cycle time.

N.B. Handy expands relationship with Iowa Precision

LYNCHBURG, Va. - N.B. Handy Co. has been named distributor for Iowa Precision in northern Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, eastern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey.

"Iowa Precision sets the standard in custom-designed and manufactured automated coil-processing solutions," said Paul Seufer, general manager for N.B. Handy's machinery division. "We are companies that share similar values for quality and service and comparable visions for the industry. Iowa Precision is a first-class company and extending our territory lends continuity to what N.B. Handy is doing."

N.B. Handy is a 115-year-old company with branch locations in Baltimore and Capitol Heights, Md. The machinery group is located in Lynchburg, Va., where a 24,000-square-foot facility has been dedicated to machinery inventory and sales support. It includes an 8,000-square-foot shop where machines are refurbished and rebuilt.

"N.B. Handy has extended their reach," said Dick Burkart, vice president of sales and marketing for Iowa Precision. "They have put the capacity in place in terms of quality employees to forward the interests of both our company and our customers."

Hoffman & Hoffman was named DuctSox's 2005 Representative of the Year at the 2006 AHR Expo in Chicago. On hand for the presentation was Gary Pinkalla (left), president of DuctSox; Rusty Hoffman, president of Hoffman & Hoffman; John Lipscomb, regional sales manager for DuctSox; and John Coakley, DuctSox national sales manager.

DuctSox names its 2005 Representative of the Year

Greensboro, N.C.-based Hoffman & Hoffman was named the DuctSox 2005 Manufacturer's Representative of the Year.

The company was honored Jan. 22 at the AHR Expo in Chicago.

"Besides impressive sales totals, Hoffman & Hoffman took the extra steps that the best reps are noted for, such as follow-ups on job installations, design consultation and contractor assistance," said John Coakley, national sales manager for DuctSox.

Machine tool consumption up 8 percent

U.S. machine tool consumption for December 2005 totaled $311 million, according to the Association for Manufacturing Technology and the American Machine Tool Distributors Association.

This total is up 30.8 percent from November and up 7.8 percent from the $288 million total reported in December 2004. With a year-end total of $3 billion, 2005 was up 8.4 percent compared with last year.

"December orders for machine tools increased an impressive 31 percent over November, bringing total year-over-year growth of 8.4 percent for the nation," said John B. Byrd III, AMT president. "Regionally, the health of the Central (U.S.) region's construction and agricultural equipment industries have had a positive effect on machine tool orders while the struggling automotive industry has had the opposite effect in the Midwest. Improved health of all customers markets in 2006 will mean a positive outlook for our industry."

At $83 million, December machine tool consumption in the Central U.S. was up 30.8 percent when compared with November's $63.5 million and 76.8 percent higher than the total for December a year ago. The year-end total, $674.7 million, was 27.6 percent higher than the year-end total for 2004.

In the Midwest, machine tool consumption totaled $86 million in December, 41 percent higher than November's $61 million, but 19.5 percent less than the total for last December. The $1 billion year-end total was down 3.7 percent when compared with 2004.

Western U.S. machine tool consumption in December rose to $49.71 million, 38.3 percent higher than November's $35.9 million and up 23.7 percent when compared with December 2004. At $422 million, the year-end total was 16.4 percent higher than the comparable figure for 2004.

Machine tool consumption in the Northeast in December rose to $46.4 million, 30.5 percent higher than November's $35.5 million and 10.6 percent higher than the total for December 2004. The $428.7 million total for 2005 was 2.1 percent ahead of the comparable figure for 2004.

December machine tool consumption in the Southern region totaled $45.82 million, 9.7 percent higher than November's $41.7 million, but down 12.8 percent when compared with December a year ago. At $497 million, the year-end total was 14.7 percent higher than the 2004 total.

Mid-Way Supply named SpacePak distributor

Mid-Way Supply of Zion, Ill., was chosen as a distributor for SpacePak air conditioners and heat units.

Mid-Way will stock SpacePak units at all seven of its distributor locations in Illinois, including Zion, Burr Ridge, Oak Forest, Mundelein, Rockford, Niles and Wood Dale.

"We are very excited to have Mid-Way on the SpacePak sales team," said Brian Benard, marketing manager for SpacePak. "They have been a regionally recognized powerhouse in the industry since the early 1950s and will help us drive SpacePak sales throughout the region."

"We are thrilled and excited to be associated with a brand of the caliber of SpacePak, the originators of mini-duct air-conditioning systems," said Karl Sisson, Mid-Way marketing vice president. "This brand enables us to offer our customers even broader air-conditioning choices."