Posted January 9, 2018

Earnest Machine celebrates 70th anniversary

Company looks to “What’s Next” to grow and attract new generations to the industry. 

Earnest Machine will focus on “What’s Next” in 2018 to celebrate the company’s 70th year in business.

“To define our future, we only need to look to our past,” said Earnest Machine president Kirk Zehnder. “My grandfather, Paul Zehnder, founded the company in 1948 with the idea to ‘put the needs of the customer first.’

“We’ve been putting our customers’ needs first for 70 years, and we plan to continue doing that,” said Zehnder. “Speci cally, in 2018 we’ll focus on expanding our product lines, helping customers become more efficient, and will make several investments as part of a continued commitment to manufacturing—all backed by our industry-leading service guarantee.”

Along those lines, the company took several recent strides to better serve its
customers, including:

  • Recently relocated its Atlanta distribution center and will relocate its Indianapolis DC in Q1 of 2018. The two facilities will be identical and will improve ef ciency and speed
  • Expanded its product offering to more than 10,000 large-diameter and hard-to-find product SKUs
  • Added production drilling capabilities that allow drilling small parts in large volumes
  • Added a new CNC machine to its Rocky River manufacturing facility and installed new equipment to better manage workflow and to enable Earnest to work with a broader range of exotic materials
  • Refined e-commerce services to better serve customers and help them save time and money

While Earnest Machine is focusing on how it can better serve its customers, Zehnder said the company is also working to attract the next generation of workers to the fastener industry by supporting STEM programs in high schools.

“Like everyone else in our industry, we feel the pain every time someone retires from one of our machine shops,” noted Zehnder. “Like so many other companies in our industry, we sometimes struggle to find qualified candidates because there are fewer people selecting the machining industry as a career choice.

“That’s why we’re supporting STEM programs in high schools: to get students interested in machining and engineering and to help them and their parents understand that there are great career opportunities available in the fastener industry, and not all of them require a four-year college degree.”

To further raise awareness about careers in the fastener industry and the company’s 70th anniversary, Earnest Machine will sponsor the inaugural Fastener Fair USA, which will be held in Cleveland, OH, on April 11 and 12, 2018.

“Fastener Fair USA is essentially being held in our back yard,” noted Zehnder, “so it makes sense that we celebrate our 70 years in the fastener industry by helping to make Fastener Fair USA a special event for everyone who attends.

“Cleveland was a manufacturing mecca and was home to many fastener companies in 1948 when our company was founded,” added Zehnder. “The city lost some of its luster in the 70’s and 80’s but has come back strong. We plan to use our sponsorship of Fastener Fair USA to show that—like Cleveland—Earnest Machine is going strong and is ready to help define ‘What’s Next’ for our industry.”

Earnest Machine was founded in 1948 and is a global importer, distributor, and manufacturer of large diameter and hard-to-find fasteners for the agriculture, construction equipment, heavy transportation, mining, structural construction and wind industries. Earnest maintains warehouses, sales offices, and manufacturing centers in Cleveland, OH, and Wolverhampton, England, as well as warehouses in Atlanta, GA, and Indianapolis, IN. Learn more at