In 1937, Wendell Henson started Dixie Sheet Metal Works as a small HVAC ductwork installation company in Memphis, Tenn.

In 1961, Dixie brought what was possibly the first spiral-duct-making machine to Memphis. In 1984, under a second-generation Henson, Dixie Sheet Metal Products was formed and a transition was made from installation contractor to manufacturer.

Dixie continued supplying contractors through a series of manufacturer’s representatives for the next 19 years. In 2003, the ownership of Dixie changed, and a transformation was started that continues today. In 2005, the company relocated production facilities to an 85,000-square-foot, multiple-building facility on South Bellevue in Memphis.

The company has three plasma tables, three spiral-duct machines, two oval-duct machines “and a wealth of experienced spiral manufacturing employees.”

“Adapting to the needs of our representatives and their contractors is our primary focus,” said Steve Stratton, general manager. “We are not the largest manufacturer in the spiral pipe industry, but we have the facilities and the personnel to offer a competitive spiral-pipe solution in any market. What makes Dixie unique is our service, and when construction projects require shorter lead times, revised duct layouts, and other unforeseen problems, we are able to react very quickly.”

A recent addition is the company’s computer-aided duct-design services.

“There are many manufacturers of spiral ductwork and accessories in the U.S., but we feel we can make the contractor’s job much easier by offering extensive CAD drawings of our duct system prior to installation. Coordination between construction trades is a necessity in today’s market, and if we can provide an AutoCAD file and drawing to the contractor, it is a value-added service,” said Stratton.

Dixie Metal Products currently is represented by manufacturer’s representatives in nine southeastern states.