“When we saw the CHAMP 25 a few years ago, we knew this was the future we should pursue for our next round of capital expenditures,” says Dan Wright, CEO of Paragon Tempered Glass.
Dan and his colleague Wes Brigner, Director of Manufacturing, already knew Bystronic glass and Glaston well from their vast experience in the glass industry. The two Paragon plants have 30-year-old Bystronic glass pre-processing equipment and Glaston tempering lines.
“We know that Glaston is very reliable, and the equipment does an awesome job,” says Wes. “We’ve always thought highly of the two equipment manufacturers that are now one Glaston.”
About two years ago, the men saw the CHAMP 25. They reached out to Glaston to learn more and decided it was the right path for their business.
“Not only would the line give us the speed and capacity we needed, we also knew our relationship with Glaston would be excellent and the quality would be of the highest caliber,” Dan says. And this all proved to be so – even down to the way the product was packaged and shipped.
“Of all the equipment we have purchased over the years, this machine came with the best packaging, instructions and top-of-the-line support,” Wes emphasizes. “When it came to support, the Glaston team had a response for us within minutes and a game plan to take care of any issue within an hour. This means the world to us!”
Paragon purchased their first CHAMP 25 in October 2019. Although COVID-19 slowed the process, the line was installed in September 2021. The new line incorporates four different processes – robotic loading, cutting, grinding and drilling with two sets of drills. Earlier, this would have taken four separate pieces of equipment. Now the line combines all processes into one and is tied into the company’s digital printer.
Automation opens door to greater capacity
CHAMP automates the processes, significantly improving yield and quality. At the same time, it helps Paragon focus on what they’re best at – fabricating a high volume of high value-added parts.
This is the direction their business is moving – providing parts with more holes and odder shapes – and serving new and different cab styles with a sharper look.
“Our operators are really excited about the CHAMP line, as they see this as the future. Especially at the Ohio plant, our people have adapted over the years to many changes and expect the best. They also know we share the business profits with our workforce. They understand that the better we do, the better they do, too,” Dan says.
Wes adds that the additional automation is helping them grow the business in a way they can excel without making the personnel work more hours. “We’ve been short on team members and see automation as a way for us to work to live – and not live to work,” he says.