Posted on October 1, 2015
Welding (verb): to join pieces of metal together by heating the edges until they begin to melt and then pressing them together (merriam-webster.com).
Such a simple definition, yet a concept that is utterly important in our organization. Take two pieces of aluminum and bring them together to create a masterpiece of strength and durability that let’s our customers enjoy the waterfront to the fullest. At ShoreMaster, welding isn’t just a process with heat and metal it’s an art form and diligent practice. Our welders – all 19 of them – take great care to ensure that the docks and boat lifts that leave our facility are built to last, built to enjoy and built beautifully. They have a passion for the waterfront and a pride in their craft that is unmatched.
Danny Kugler, our welding supervisor, has been with ShoreMaster since 1986 and a welder since 1987. “I got into welding because it was opportunity to get to work with my hands but also to get to create something that I knew people would love to use. I got to be a part of this unique process of creation and manufacturing.”
Kugler has seen many changes and advancements in welding technology and systems; like the introduction of ShoreMaster’s robotic welder in 2001. Danny actually programed the current robot we currently use on the ShoreMaster, LLC production floor. “It was a big change for us. It was exciting, but a big change. I didn’t really know what to expect but I knew that it had the potential to be really great for us.”
The robotic welder – which welds a variety of parts including Infinity RS4 frames, foot pads, leg posts are more – automates the welding process and allows for consistent, efficient, repetitive welding. Kugler says, “It’s great for a lot of our team, it brings a lot of efficiency to some of the smaller parts and frames so that our guys can focus on the larger frames and materials. On a truss frame there is not replacement for two sets of hands and welders special touch, but for a lot of our stuff Hal does just great.” Hal is the name the guys gave the robot.
Kugler isn’t sure what the next big change is going to be, but he does know that one thing is for sure “No matter what comes next for us welders, it’s going to be fun, it always is.”