Newsletter winter 07 by accinent


									                                               “One Source”

                              News for the associates of BPC - one of                                                      Feb./March/April 2007
                              the largest independently-owned producers                                                    Vol. I, Issue 3
                              in the US of precision machined parts
                                                                                                                           701 S. Main Street
                                                                                                                           Sheridan, IN 46099
Mary Frances Remembers the Early Days
                            Biddle Precision Components       How to Park Airplanes                                        Visit our website:
 This is the third in a     self-described oldest employee    As evidence of Ken’s willingness to try new solutions,
 series of articles about   officially retired in 1992, and   Mary Frances tells about the airplane-parking problem.
 the history of BPC. In     is still active as its Chairman   As a pilot, he was often in the position of needing to
 this article Mary          of the Board. Mary Frances        maneuver his plane in and out of the hangar. Working
 Frances Baird,
                            Baird, the only child of com-     with the company’s head of maintenance, Ken had a
 daughter of Biddle’s
                            pany founder Ken Biddle, wit-     turntable constructed inside the hangar. Since his
 founder, remembers
 the beginnings.
                            nessed firsthand the start from
                            its early infancy in 1939 to
                                                              plane was a twin-engine, he just had to pull onto the
                                                              turntable, cut one engine, and gun the other. The plane       Inside
                            present day, and remembers it     would turn about and be ready to pull out of the
quite well.                                                   hangar for the next flight. A design still very unique
                                                              to this day!
Working at Home                                                                                                             ■ In the Spotlight:
She was just a young girl in                                  A Touch of Home                                                        Curtiss-Wright
high school when her father                                   Mary Frances credits her mother Velma for being a
made the first company equip-                                 very valuable asset to her father. Of course she was
ment purchase from Sears—a                                    there from the start, smoothing the burrs off of              ■ Milestones
lathe and typewriter, as well as                              manufactured parts, but as the business grew she
a used sewing machine for                                     became a skilled hostess. Many early customers                         Service Awards
Mary Frances because she                                      enjoyed delicious meals at the Biddle home after a day                  and Birthdays
liked to sew. Evenings would                                  of meetings and tours at the plant. Although all of her
often be spent finishing pans
full of metal parts her father
                                                              meals were good, Mary Frances particularly
                                                              remembers folks enjoying Velma’s meat loaf, oatmeal           ■ Healthy Living
would bring home with him.                                    cake, and (Ken’s                                                    Home Economics
As many boxes were being           Mary Frances Baird         favorite) beans
taken in and out of the apart-                                and cornbread.
                                                                                                                              Teacher Patty Swank,
ment, it became of suspicious                                                                                                           Noblesville
interest to the family’s neighbors, some of whom              A Lot of
thought Ken might be in the bootleg business. Mary
Frances figures they were pretty disappointed to learn
                                                              As Mary Frances                                               ■ Biddle’s Has a
the truth, that the Biddle’s were just making extra           deeply admired                                                Strong Year
money filing off metal burrs.                                 her parents, her                                                         Brian Myers
                                                              admiration is not
Working and Playing Hard                                      limited to just
When you hear the stories of those early days, the            them. Mary             Mary Frances Baird, Velma              ■ Biddle’s SMED
days when Ken Biddle was working multiple jobs and            Frances recognizes and Ken Biddle at a trade
his wife and daughter were filing metal burrs, it’s easy      the crucial role
to imagine their lives being all work. In fact, Mary          good employees         show in Miami in 1957.                             Rick Durbin
Frances describes her father as a very energetic person       play in the success of BPC. “They’re wonderful peo-
who might possibly have worked around the clock in            ple,” she often says and speaks warmly of their loyalty
his quest to get ahead. Mary Frances remembers it as a        and conscientiousness. As an example, she tells of
good time and really enjoyed growing up then. “We             attending the recent company open house and being
worked and we played, but worked harder than we               asked by Sharon Reners if she’d like to see a demon-
played”. Far from being a chore, their evening work           stration of the two machines. Her expertise and pride
provided the family a great deal of enjoyment as              were clearly evident and Mary Frances feels fortunate
they’d “talk, talk, talk”—forming a bond she worries          that the company continues to be staffed by such good
many families today are too busy to experience.               workers, many of whom are second and third genera-
                                                              tion employees.
Working Around the Clock
She remembers her father being ahead of his time. He          Many Memories, Many Stories
decided to try a lot of things people said wouldn’t           As she sits in her favorite plaid chair in her Carmel
work. He offered customers heat treatment plating             home, she’s surrounded by family photos and
when no one else was. He used cash incentives to              children’s toys, and it’s quite clear that Mary Frances is
encourage employees to stop smoking. Ken once took            enjoying her new job of being a grandmother to five
a memory course at Butler University with his                 grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren. Not
granddaughter Darlene. Turns out he was a natural.            surprisingly, she talks about their creativity, funny
After that class he was able to remember every                antics, good looks, and their smarts. As these kids
employee’s name and birthday. No doubt there were             provide lots of stories for her now, it’s clear she’s
also some flattered customers who were impressed              giving them many stories and great memories as well.
when he successfully remembered so much about
them too.
MILESTONES                                      Biddle Has a Strong Year
FEBRUARY               7    Kevin Stahl         Brian Myers,                          Employees have the most
BIRTHDAYS              8    Walter Mercer      President                              impact on growth and
                       10   Thomas Barnes                                             performance.
1    Xiong Cheng       12   Michael             2006 was a
6    Larry Moss             `McPhearson         very good
13   Judith Delph      13   Billy Reners        year for                              A company’s success in the
15   Robert Johnson    15   Richard Durbin      Biddle. Sales                         marketplace today requires the
17   Byron Hammack     16   Trena Malbone                                             best and brightest workers. We
                                                were up 9%
23   Brad Meyer        16   Michael Teter                                             invest in our employees because
                       17   Larry Boyer         over 2005,
25   Tonya Kercheval                                                                  they are the center of everything
28   Sharron Reners    17   Jeffrey Vickers     and profits
                       17   Rodney Wheeler      were the best since 1998. The         we do. Employees are not only
28   Bradley Surber
                       18   Christy Minear-     manufacturing economy is still        the foot soldiers of the company;
                            McClain             robust in most market segments,       the spirit of their work lets
MARCH                  21   Dennis
BIRTHDAYS                                       and it was very evident for us.       customers know how the
                            Campbell                                                  company is perceived in the
1   Richard Cokley     25   Billie Bougher      Our backlog was strong almost
3   Stephen Smyser     26   Harold              all year, and when it dipped at       marketplace.
4   David Biddle            Stapleton           all, it gave us a great opportunity   If we produce high-quality
4   Dawn Lewis         26   Paul Walton         to cross-train our associates in      goods, we spent less time and
8   Janet              27   Anita Parrish                                             money fixing them, and we have
                                                other departments. We saw the
    Lindenmayer        29   Janet Prater                                              better customer satisfaction and
                       30   Tony Bailey         arrival of many new pieces of
8   William Murphy                                                                    more repeat sales.
12 Ricky Stone                                  machinery; two more
12 Janet Fisher        FEBRUARY SERVICE         Hydromat’s and several new
                       ANNIVERSARIES            CNC lathes & mills. The new           2007 looks bright for us also, as
13 Gregory Smith
                       10 Years                 technology is a key ingredient in     orders are already strong. We
15 John Myers
17 Patrick Butcher     Richard Reeves           our ability to compete in this        have more new equipment on
18 Philip Smoot                                 global marketplace. As new            the way, and the hiring of
19 Gregory Bell        APRIL SERVICE                                                  qualified operators continues.
                                                offshore companies emerge and
23 Laura Holliday      ANNIVERSARIES                                                  Stay tuned for more updates.
                       30 Years                 the domestic shops continually
26 Russell Bauer                                improve, we must keep up in
30 Dave Tudor          Dale Leap
                                                order to survive.
                        Employees in
APRIL                   Memoriam
BIRTHDAYS                                                        Did you know that the Automatics
1   Boyd Campbell       Meredith Barker             BPC
                                                                 Department area used to be Sheridan’s
5   Timothy Hale        1919 – 2006
                                                                 only roller skating rink?


 Curtiss Wright (Teledyne) has an interesting heritage with its roots dating back to the Wright brothers’ first
 flight in 1903. Today, as it was in the Wright brothers’ days, Curtiss Wright Corporation is centered upon
 engineering and looks to markets where their engineering expertise can gain market advantages. There are
 three business segments to Curtiss Wright: Motion Control, Flow Control and Metal Treating.

 Our part controls the lifting of the flatbed platforms on semi-car carriers. Biddle became involved in this spool
 after the car hauling industry demanded lighter transport trailers to conserve fuel. Teledyne came to BPC
 early in 1993 to develop a close tolerance aluminum spool to solve the leaking valve problem and to further
 reduce the overall weight of the valve. The success of the new lightweight directional control valve has
 allowed Teledyne/Curtiss Wright to capture a significant share of this market. In addition, we now
 manufacture 13 more part numbers for Curtiss Wright.
Biddle’s SMED Program Takes Off’
                                             reductions over the past 3               our team approach to SMED,
                by Rick Durbin               years.                                   our setups have been reduced
                – Mfg. Manager                    The program places great            up to 50% in most areas. For
                                             emphasis on team                         example, in July of 2003 the
              In July of 2003                participation. We form groups            average setup in the
              the average plant-             in each department that                  Automatic’s department was
              wide setup was 4               include: operators, setup                13.9 hours. At the end of
hours, with as many as 100                   people, supervisors, and                 2006 it had been reduced to
setups completed per week.                   managers; then focus on a                just 5.9 hours. This will give
Now that customers are                       work center to identify                  us more opportunity to grow
demanding smaller quantity                   “waste” in all steps of the              our business with customers
deliveries with a quicker                    setup process. Many hours of             and to be more competitive in
turnaround, the need for some                video are watched together               the marketplace. Plant-wide
type of setup reduction                      and then critiqued as a group            setup averages have dwindled
became very apparent. The                    for solutions. Unnecessary               to just 2.1 hours as of the end
metal stamping industry was                  items/moves or what we call              of 2006. A true testament to
showing great setup time                     “Waste” for example, might be            our dedicated workforce!
reductions with a program                    searching for tools, waiting on          Through continued
called SMED (Single Minute                   gauges, or other needed items.           application of this program
Exchange of Dies), and that is               Once this waste is identified,           we hope to drive our setup
what we adopted. Since                       it can be reduced, or better             times even lower.
starting this program, we’ve                 yet ‘eliminated’.
have seen some incredible                         We have found that with

                                LIVING                                                                 Our founder,
                                                                                           DID YOU     Ken Biddle
                                                                                            KNOW?      obtained his
                                                                                                       private pilots
                                                                                                       license in
Cooking School by Teacher & Cook, Patty Swank                                         1946; the same year he built
Some home economics teachers have gourmet tastes. I don’t. When I                     the Sheridan Airport. It is
attended Ball State, back in the late fifties, my favorite place to eat was the
                                                                                      still in operation today, and is
cafeteria in the student center. All the recipes were from scratch by, what I
called then, old fashion cooks. I can still “taste” the scalloped chicken or the      home to over 38 aircraft. It
baked chili. I am always looking for recipes and I have found one that reads          has a 3800’ paved & fully
like it might be similar to their baked chili.                                        lighted runway, and is the
                                                                                      only privately owned airport
                              Baked Chili                                             in Hamilton County with a
                                                                                      paved runway.
Cook two pounds of hamburger.              tomatoes with juice and a one pound
Drain. In oil, saute 1 medium onion,       can of chili beans. Place in a casserole
chipped, until transparent. To the         dish and bake at 350 degrees for one
cooked meat and onion add 1 cup            hour. Serves 8.
uncooked elbow macaroni, 1
teaspoon salt, 1 quart diced canned          Enjoy, Patty
                                                                       In the next issue:
                        OF EVENTS                                      More History of BPC
                                                                       Customer Interview

                   February                      March                           April
                   4       Colts Win Superbowl   Thru the
                                                 25th Conner Prairie             1    Palm Sunday
                   9-11    Indianapolis                 Hearthside Suppers
                           Symphony                                              6    Good Friday
                           “Be My Valentine”     9-11   Indianapolis Arts and
                                                        Antiques Show            8    Easter
                                                        State Fair Grounds
                   12      Lincoln’s Birthday

                   14      Valentine’s Day
                                                        Daylight Savings Time
                                                        Begins                               ✿
                                                 17     St. Patrick’s Day
                   14-25 Beef’n’Boards
                         “Thoroughly Modern

                   21      Ash Wednesday

                   22      Washington’s

     “One Source”
701 S. Main Street • Sheridan, IN 46069
(317) 758-4451 • (317) 758-5260 Fax

To top