Greg Spanier took possession of the new buildings, adjacent to his original workshop in the Industrial Park, and started to move equipment across the shared courtyard on April 1. The purchase expands his indoor working and storage area from 6,000 sq. ft. to 20,000 sq. ft.
"I either had to start turning work away or we had to expand, either one," explained Spanier. After the move, Spanier added three new employees, raising his total employment from six to nine. Six people do welding full time. Spanier Welding also has a shearer, break, and machine shop.
One section of the new building currently houses most of the welding. Spanier plans to move all the operating equipment into this new, larger building by winter. His original building and another building purchased from Louis Industries will then be used for cold storage.
Spanier Welding does manufacturing, contract work to other manufacturers, and does repair work. Products include elk handling equipment, recycling bins, bleachers, equipment for dairy barns and parlors and for the agriculture industry, and parts for displays in retail stores.
"We can pretty much do whatever a guy needs to do to steel," said Spanier. Last week, an order of 20,000 trapeze bars for a metro company was ready to be shipped.
More and more, the steel industry is becoming specialized. Spanier estimated that a quarter of his business was doing work for other manufacturers. The equipment for handling elk, used by elk farmers, is one product that Spanier Welding makes from scratch. "The industry has changed so much. Nobody really does much of that (building from scratch) anymore," explained Spanier.
"We don't just manufacture," he continued. "We do a lot of repair work."
"We've got a pretty good client base that's steady," said Spanier. "It's been really good since I started in business."
He started Spanier Welding in 1987, after working for Louis Industries for seven years. Their relationship has continued since then. "We work together on a lot of projects," said Spanier.
Spanier is starting to get into steel sales as well. Mostly, it's "onesy" and "twosies" sort of stuff, Spanier said, but they can handle larger orders, too.
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