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Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance Meeting

Last week, HE&M Saw was pleased to host the quarterly meeting of The Manufacturing Workforce Committee of the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance (OMA).

The Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance works with companies to create wealth and grow the state’s economy. The alliance offers technical assistance and business advice; helping companies become more innovative and successful. Through their statewide network of manufacturing extension agents and applications engineers, services focus on improving the bottom line through efficiency concepts like Lean Manufacturing and Six Sigma. They also work to grow the entire business through new product development, service improvements, and expanding markets.

This committee—led by Sharon Harrison, Director of Workforce Development and Community Partnerships—is comprised of c-level executives from large and small manufacturers across the state. They endeavor to develop a state-wide framework for identifying and driving initiatives for manufacturer’s workforce challenges in the state of Oklahoma.

After the meetings concluded, HE&M Saw V.P. of Manufacturing, Mike Glover and Chief Engineer, Maxwell Harris led attendees on a tour of both the HE&M Saw manufacturing and assembly facilities.

New Regional Sales Manager – Max Starr

It is with great pleasure that HE&M Saw introduce our new Western Region Sales Manager, Max Starr.  Though Max makes his home in Orange County, California,  his sales territory includes California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Washington, Oregon and Montana.

Married to wife, Janie, for over 36 years, they have one daughter. When he’s not on the road, Max enjoys spending his spare time doing a little fishing.

Max brings with him over 30 years of experience not only in sales but also in installation, repair and service in the machine tool industry.   We consider his knowledge of the sawing industry a valuable asset and welcome him to our HE&M Saw Team.

You can contact Max @ 918-530-7674 or by e-mail at mstarr@hemsaw.com

Never a Dull Moment

HE&M Saw was “at it again’ with the recent design and build of a large vertical band saw that minimized the risks involved with cutting graphite.

Sometimes the softest material can be a challenge to cut. We recently had a customer inquire about a band saw that could cut graphite. While graphite is not necessarily a difficult material to cut, there are several concerns that must be addressed to ensure safety and success.

The Challenge

The challenges are not with cutting the material, but rather with the material qualities. Under a great deal of pressure and heat, graphite converts to diamond, a tough material. In its pure form, it is relatively soft and also highly conductive of heat and electricity, which is why it is commonly used in products such as electrodes, batteries, solar panels, and other industrial products. Graphite is most commonly associated with pencils.

Cutting graphite offers unique challenges for a saw design because the graphite dust resulting from the soft material is quite fine. When airborne, if it settles surrounding electrical components and connections, electrical shorts are likely to occur due to the high conductivity, which, beyond component failure, could result in creating a fire. Graphite is non-flammable in bulk form, but combustible and even explosive with the proper mixtures of graphite dust and air.

The Solution

Our engineering team designed the V360M-CTS2. This custom-designed saw has safety features that minimize the risks of electrical shorts by incorporating a dust-proof and ATEX rated motor on the saw. Additionally, all electrical parts were specified with sealed housings to minimize the amount of exposure to the particles.

One Mistake And… Boom!

The saw that cuts live explosive ordinance

At HE&M Saw, we believe that we are the solution of our customer’s metal cutting problems. We often think of ourselves as “problem solvers” and have more than our share of unusual projects. The project described here involved the design of a saw to cut live explosive ordnance for a national aerospace and defense company. The task came with the realization that the solution must work as designed or the consequences would be disastrous.

The Design
A major consideration in the design of the machine was the requirement to minimize metal-on-metal contact to lower the risk of setting off live bombs during the sawing operation. A mistake here would have been catastrophic, and the saw was required to be able to cut bombs weighing up to 400 lbs. For safety protocol, the saw operator was to be remotely located 400 feet from the equipment. An explosion resulting from the sawing would certainly take the surrounding building down at a minimum.

Modified photo used with permission of the United States Air Force

Special care was required in designing all fasteners to prevent them from becoming projectiles if explosive material could accumulate around or under them. If this occurred and a maintenance procedure required component disassembly, a bolt could become a deadly weapon when a wrench made contact and set off the explosive material. Quality Assurance required all cast components to be x-rayed to ensure inclusions were minimal and to a strict standard to reduce explosive build-up from minuscule particles that were created during cutting. Any “pocket” that could trap and collect this explosive material would essentially be creating a secondary bomb; a saw design project that had no room for error.

The takeaway
This project, like many special designs completed over the years, represents who we are as a “problem solver” and an example of what we at HE&M Saw have designed and manufactured right here in the USA. We welcome these types of challenges because we believe every problem has a solution.

Paul Beha, HE&M Saw’s Products Manager

The Saw That Cut Through Contaminated Metallic Debris

At HE&M Saw, we have created a number of innovative custom saws, but none more unique than the custom saw we designed for a decommissioned Plutonium manufacturing facility located in Colorado. With the capability to cut through large blocks of compressed scrap, the custom saw can also be dissembled and reassembled to allow for transportation into the required facility for the job.

In the early 1990s a Plutonium manufacturing facility in Colorado was decommissioned. The facility had produced Plutonium for a nuclear ordinance since the 1950’s. As part of the deconstruction efforts, over 800 structures were demolished, and 21 tons of weapons-grade materials were removed. The demolition resulted in 1.3 million cubic meters of waste that was compressed into 3-foot cubes and buried underground. Today, the plant is completely gone. However, it was recently discovered that some of the buried material was contaminated and leaking into the environment. This required the material to be dug up and disposed of properly.

For proper disposal, a saw would need to cut the 3-foot metal cubes into pieces small enough to fit in 55-gallon drums. The cubes were deemed hazardous and radioactive, and could only be processed in a radiation containment facility. The facility was isolated within 3-foot-thick walls and only accessible through a service door. Unfortunately, a saw with this capability usually stands at 12’ high, far larger than the human-sized service door.

As a solution, our engineering team designed a saw that could be dissembled by the customer, carried through the service door, and then reassembled to cut the compressed cubes.

Incidentally, due to the risk of radiation exposure, the saw operators could only work for a fraction of their eight hour shift—a mere 30 minutes. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the branch of government that oversees the site, later reported that after analyzing more than 100 samples of soil, the contamination levels were below what is considered a risk to human health.

This project provided our HE&M Saw team the opportunity to think outside the box and design a saw that could cut the product while also fitting within specific facility constraints.

Paul Beha, HE&M Saw’s Products Manager

 

Mary T. Harris

Celebration of Life Honors Mary T. Harris

The Harris family invites all friends and family who wish to celebrate the life of Mary T. Harris to an open reception on Friday, September 6.

Mary passed from this life earlier this month after a brave battle with cancer. Mary was the beloved wife of Doug Harris, mother to Maxwell and Brianna Harris. She was loved by many family and friends, and had an impact with several local nonprofits in the community.

The celebration of life will be an open reception from 5:00 – 10:00 p.m. at the Russell Hunt Lodge in Pryor Oklahoma, within the MidAmerica Industrial Park.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Kidney Cancer Association in Mary’s name or donations made directly to “Team Mary” at www.secure.kidneycancer.org. The funds raised will benefit the Kidney Cancer Association.

For more details and directions to Russell Hunt Lodge, please contact Dawn Parsley at DParsley@HEMSAW.com.

Please note that the Russell Hunt Lodge does not have a physical address that is recognized by GPS. Signs will be posted as you get close to the Lodge location.

Parking is limited at the Lodge and additional parking with shuttle service has been made available for use.

Driving directions from
The Hard Rock to the Russell Hunt Lodge

From Hard Rock Hotel And Casino Tulsa
777 W Cherokee St, Catoosa, OK 74015

Take I-44 E/US-412 E

Follow US-412 E to OK-412B N – MidAmerica Industrial Park Entrance 5

Follow OK-412B N to Robertson Rd. Turn right and follow the “Private Drive” to the lodge.

 

Driving directions from
I44 (OK-KS-MO Tri-State Marker) / 69 Highway to Russell Hunt Lodge

K-KS-MO Tri-State Marker
Joplin, MO 64804

Take I-44 West towards Tulsa

Follow I-44 to Exit 283 – US-69 Big Cabin and take the exit

Continue on US-69 S. Drive through Pryor to MidAmerica Industrial Park

Turn left onto US-69A at the stop light. Continue on until you reach MidAmerica Industrial Park Entrance 5.

Turn right at Entrance 5 and follow OK-412B until you reach Robertson Rd – just past DuPont and across from the Chouteau Power Plant – and turn right. Follow the “Private Drive” to the lodge.

 

Driving directions from
US-412 East (Fayetteville, Arkansas) to Russell Hunt Lodge

Arkansas

Take US-412 W to OK-412B N – MidAmerica Industrial Park Entrance 5

Turn right at Entrance 5 and follow OK-412B N until you reach Robertson Rd. Turn left and follow the “Private Drive” to the lodge.

HE&M Saw in Manufacturing in Focus

Please checkout and read about HE&M Saw in Manufacturing in Focus’ July 2019 issue:

Bill Flint

Occasionally, you have to step back and realize that we really do live in a small world and that’s what happened when HE&M Saw, Utility Saw Manager, Rick Gwartney met Bill Flint.

Several years ago, Rick was in Louisville, KY, for the NSRA (National Street Rod Association) Street Rod Nationals, working the HE&M Saw booth, when he met a gentleman who was showing a car, at the show, and was interested in a utility saw for some of his projects, both auto and ranch related. Well, HE&M Saw just happens to sell a very fine line of just that thing.

So, for those unfamiliar, let’s define exactly what a ‘street rod’ is and what it isn’t. According to many rod enthusiasts “A street rod is an automobile, car or truck, manufactured before 1949, that has been modified to handle modern highways.” Typically, this includes the builder taking the body and pairing it with a late model chassis, transmission, engine, power steering, power brakes, AC, as well and all the bells and whistles you can think of. Think “Old School” look with modern amenities! A ‘street rod’ is not, a muscle car, a survivor or just a restored car.

In most cases, these custom cars are chopped, channeled, lowered, shaved, frenched, louvered, given Easter egg colored, heavily glossed paint jobs, trimmed with lots of billet and custom leather interior to match. Once all this custom work is done, the owner stands back, checks the weather, packs his car cleaning tools, checks the weather again and gingerly heads off to a car show, providing there is not a cloud in the sky and the show is local and there are no dirt roads involved.

Not Bill Flint, he believes in driving his cars. You can tell because even his pride and joy, 1942 Ford “Hardtop”, has bug guts and rock chips on the paint. This car is so sweet, it’s been featured in “Street Scene” magazine 3 times, won at the NSRA show in Oklahoma and was nominated in Louisville. That’s really something for a car that is driven to most of the shows it attends. Yes, it was trailered to Louisville, we won’t fault anyone for that, it’s a long way, but once there, he drove it all over town.

Even as a young man, Bill Flint loved cars. Though he made his living for 52 years as a barber, these days he ranches close to 500 acres, and still manages to find time to build and play with cars. It may have taken him 20 years to build the ’42, but it’s okay, the detail is impeccable.

Let’s talk details. First, there were NO “hardtops” built in 1942…. “hardtop”, meaning that the roofline was rigid and sufficient enough that with front and back windows down, there is no post holding the roof up. Second, ALL consumer vehicle production halted in February of ‘42 and didn’t resume until October of ‘45, by order of the government’s Office of Production Management. By the end of WWII, Ford Motor Company had built nearly 90,000 complete aircraft and an additional 58,000 airplane engines for the British government. Why for the British government? Because Henry Ford was a pacifist and he opposed America’s entry into WWII, until the attacks on Pearl Harbor.

So, now that you’ve had your history lesson, we’ll get back to Mr. Flint and his “street rod”. Bill gave his Ford a nice chop, 3” in the front and 6” in the back, widened the fenders, front and back, giving the car a really nice wide stance.

 

Underneath, he added an ’89 Mustang engine, the ’85 Lincoln Town Car transmission and all the other details taken from modern cars, but when you look at the details, you see art.

But the devil is in the details, and that’s why these cars take so long to build, like the original running lights; a style only used that year, and the subtlety of frenched taillights. But what really showed me his eye for detail is over the doors. The window frame was removed from the door body and added back to the roof line and a small, ever so slight bend or ridge, was left in definition. And the two-tone paint scheme, light copper over champagne, highlights all the right places and helps to exaggerate the widened body. It’s the kind of forethought that separates the builders from the artist.

This isn’t the only car Flint has, no; he’s a bit of a collector and mostly Fords! There is a ’57 Ford Custom sitting on 17” tires, a ’40 Ford street rod, but he bought it already done, a ’70 Maverick with a ’68 302 and 4.88 gears, all set up to turn a 12:47 in the 1/4 mile. And let’s not forget the ’70 Mach I, he bought to work on with his son, that’s waiting to have the 351 Cleveland put in and a his ’67 Fastback, aka Eleanor, that’s had all the body work done but still needs paint and the 2011 Coyote to be installed.

Then he took us to the garage attached to the house and there was the most beautiful, factory correct Sun Gold and White, 1958 Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner, with retractable hardtop.

 

Now, is your head spinning? Mine was, and that’s when he showed me his ’37 Dodge pick-up. And again, the details make the difference between a nice truck and a show truck. First, he had to stretch out the frame to fit the ’48 Buick straight 8, with 4 carburetors. All this power required a little reinforcement, so he added a ’50 Chevy front axle, a ’65 Ford pick-up 9” read end, transmission from an ’85 Chevy S10 5-speed and more fun than the law allows. Flint also built channels for the leaf springs to hid in, just an added custom touch. The color, I believe, is Root Beer and the custom interior and bar finish wood parquet bed, are real show stoppers.

 

 

But he wasn’t finished, Bill then had us follow him to another house, on the property, and when he opened the garage door, there sat his Factory-Five Racing MK4 Roadster, aka as a 1965 Shelby Cobra replica. Even after 50 years, the Cobra is still one of the most desirable cars around and Flints’, which he hand built himself, certainly checks all the right boxes.

So, why are we interested? Because while at the previously mentioned NSRA show in Louisville, Bill Flint bought a utility saw from Rick and that is when they discovered they live and ranch maybe 10 miles, or so, from one another. Flint needed a utility saw to cut frame rails and exhaust pipe, but also for fence post. He bought one saw and liked it so well, when he had an additional need, he bought a second model HE&M Utility Saw.

Project Hudson Hornet Part II

HE&M Saw founder, Gerry Harris and his son, HE&M Saw President & CEO, Doug Harris, recently traveled to Georgia, to Sam Mahdavi’s shop, Mahdavi MotorSports, to be involved in the filming of “Project Hudson Hornet”, for Sam’s GarageTV.  What an experience that was!

Sam’s GarageTV is featured on MotorTrendTV (formerly Velocity), MAVTV & REV’N networks and is produced by PowerScope Productions INC, owned by Butch and Sherry McCall, a national television production firm, specializing in automotive and marine programming, along with video production by Revma Media.

Sam’s Garage TV host, Sam Mahdavi, founded Mahdavi MotorSports with his brother in 1999 and last year, Sam moved the business to a larger space and became the sole proprietor.  While his shop may specialize in diagnostics and repairs, Mahdavi is known for building turbocharged performance vehicles.  While he works daily in his business and hosts his TV show, he can also be heard co-hosting the nationally syndicated radio show, Sam’s Garage Radio, with Sam Memmolo, who you might remember form “Two Guy’s Garage”, “Shadetree Mechanic” and “Motorhead Garage”.

But let’s not get our Sam’s confused.  Sam Mahdavi has been involved with motorsports long enough to have been part of  the SEMA installers challenge 2004, two NDRA drag racing Championships, as well as many other NRDA podium appearances, and winner of the Speed Channel hit series “Pinks” in 2008.  But that’s not all, Mahdavi MotorSports has provided more than 10 performance cars for the “Fast & Furious” movie series, appeared in “Fast 7” and was involved in the making of the hit movie ”Let’s Be Cops”.

It’s safe to say that with all his experience, Sam Mahdavi is qualified to work on any year, make or model car.  And according to Gerry Harris, so is his son, Doug.  Mr. Harris tells us “I expected Sam to be up to speed, but I was surprised at just how knowledgeable my son was about the Hudson”, Mr. Harris added that maybe he was just “being a proud father.”

And why wouldn’t he be knowledgeable, Doug Harris became involved in auto racing as a mere child, just 16 years old when he started racing his MG, the front clip of which ‘might’ have been heavily filled with Bondo, in Autocross events.    Funny story; Doug and lifelong friend, Paul Beha, who is now Products Manager for HE&M Saw, showed up for an autocross event, their first, with their motorcycle helmets strapped to the luggage rack.  Being 16 and having zero experience, they assigned the car a lap time and had written it in shoe polished on the windshield.  As the story goes, the entire race the announcer kept saying, “Mr. Harris must have been drag racing last night, as he still has his times on the windshield”.

Well, that was a lesson learned and soon after that, he progressed up to running a Lotus Europa in SCCA (Sports Car Club of America) sanctioned road races and rallies and in 1984 was E-Production Track Champion at Hallett Motor Racing Circuit, just west of Tulsa, OK.

Until the late ‘80’s-early ‘90’s, he ran his Lotus and Alpha Romeo in road races all over Colorado, where he was living at the time, until he and wife Mary, decided maybe it was time to stop dragging their kids to every race track around.

Seems that ‘retirement’ only lasted a few years and by the middle ‘90’s Doug was back to racing again.  By then he and his family had moved to Oklahoma, to be more involved with the company his father founded, and racing was back in the picture.  And just about every June, you can find Doug Harris, out at Hallett Racing Circuit, participating in the road course events of the Mid-America Ford/Team Shelby Meet, held every Father’s Day weekend, in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Between these three men, there are volumes of electrical, mechanical, engineering and automotive knowledge.  I’d say the Hudson is in pretty good hands.

And just to be clear, this is not a frame-off restoration; the goal is to maintain as much originality as possible. Mahdavi says “This is the most feasible restoration, without spending $100K; it makes the Hudson affordable and drivable.”  This car is solid as a rock and aside from a small bump under the passenger side headlight, the body is straight and the chrome is all intact and seems to just need to be cleaned and polished.

Over the next few weekly shows, you will see “Project Hudson Hornet” get a new master cylinder, bushings, lower control arm, driveshaft, and exhaust.  You’ll also get to see the gas tank removal, carburetor rebuild, and engine and transmission removal.

Be sure to tune into Sam’s Garage TV, featured on Motortrend TV, Saturdays @ 9AM EST and Sundays @ 8AM EST or on REV’N channel Saturdays @ 6PM EST, Sundays @ 12:30PM EST and Wednesdays @9PM EST.

  

Project Hudson Hornet

Some forty something years ago, HE&M Saw founder, Gerald Harris, bought an automobile at auction. Nothing special or unusual about that, except for what he bought was an original 1954 Hudson Hornet.

Having admired Hudson’s as a young man, he bought his first around 1946. A 1937 Hudson Terraplane Business Coupe, purchased from a wrecking yard for the ripe sum of $75, which was a lot of money back then.

Although that first Hudson had a bad cam, young Gerry Harris replaced it and off he went. The body rust on the frame and floor pans was no deterrent to a young man with a fast car. Well, until he revved the engine up past 7500 RPM and blew up the motor.

 

 

His love affair with Hudson’s didn’t stop there and in 1953 he bought a 1950 model and after that, he purchased a 1951 Hudson Hornet.

The 1951 Hudson Hornet was powerful and fast. It featured Hudson’s high-compression straight six “H-145” engine and had a whopping 145HP. But aside from that, it had Hudson’s new “step-down” body style, which lowered the center of gravity and allowed that road hugging ride, but also a very stylish and sleek look.

 

  

Then, while working as a car salesman in 1954-56, Mr. Harris did as most car salesmen do, he upgraded. This time it was into a 1953 Hornet. Starting in ’52, Hudson made an optional “twin-H”, or twin one barrel carburetor, set-up available. And with that option, this Hudson was faster than its predecessors, but Mr. Harris tells us that, while weighing in at over 3600lbs, “the gas mileage was very poor”.

Mr. Harris also says he wasn’t a very good car salesman and quit that to pursue “other options”. And boy, are we happy he did, because a few years later he founded Harris Engineering and Manufacturing, now in its second generation and known as HE&M Saw, Inc.

 

So, back to this 1954 Hudson Hornet, which, by the way, was the last car the Hudson Motor Company produced before their merger with Nash-Kelvinator, forming the American Motor Company (AMC).

Somewhere between 1976 and 1980, Mr. Harris heard of a 1954 Hudson Hornet Club Coupe that was to be sold at an antique car auction near Silver Dollar City, Missouri. The car had belonged to the son of a friend, and as the story goes, this car had not been sold by the original dealership and had been put into storage, along with some other unsold vehicles. Essentially, these cars were new, never sold and in original condition. Today we use the term “new-old stock”, new and never sold and with few or no miles.

The young man bought the “new” car out of the storage unit and used it during his college days, and years later consigned it with an antique car auction house to sell. And that is where Mr. Harris acquired the ’54 Hornet.

The selling price was $2200 and another $4000 was invested into having it painted and some re-chroming done. The big car drove well, but after a while, Mr. Harris realized that with no power steering and no power brakes, his new ‘80’s model car was a much nicer ride and in 1983, he parked the Hudson.

At first, the Hudson was stored outside with a tarp over it, but a few years later, Mr. Harris built a large garage and it was stored there. Until a few weeks ago, when Mr. Harris’ son, Doug Harris, President and CEO of HE&M Saw, Inc., decided that it just wouldn’t do to let it continue to sit and deteriorate.

 

  

After not having been tagged since 1989, the Hudson was pulled out and loaded onto a trailer for transport to Lawrenceville, Georgia, where Sam Mahdavi, of Sam’s Garage and Mahdavi Motorsports, will give it a total restoration.

Because of the stock car racing domination of the Hudson Hornet in the early ‘50’s, back when “stock car” actually meant bone stock, NASCAR fans have long revered the Hornets’ contributions as legendary. This fact was hammered home and made known to a whole new generation with the appearance of “Doc Hudson”, the Original Hudson Hornet, in the Pixar film “Cars”.

 

  

In light of all that, and it being an all original, numbers matching car, the complete restoration will bring it back to its original condition; no fuel injection, LS motor or air-ride suspension for this “legend”.

HE&M Saw and its owner, Doug Harris, are proud to be able to save this piece of automotive history and will be close to the action for all the work. We expect this to take up to 2 years and you can see it all documented on the next 2 seasons of Sam’s Garage, produced by PowerScope Productions and featured on MotorTrendTV, Saturdays at 8 am central and Sundays at 7 am central.

To follow “Project Hudson Hornet”, like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter (both @hemsaw), we’ll be posting pictures as the project progresses.

 

  

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