Industry Scuttlebutt

Brad and Jeff Ohlemacher with President Obama at EMC Precision Machining

For EMC Precision Machining in Elyria, Ohio, it was just another day at the office last Friday—except for President Obama stopping by for a walkthrough and photo op. For Jeff and Brad Ohlemacher, the owners, it was a chance to show off the plant to, who knows, maybe a big new customer. The video on their Web site shows the Ohlemacher brothers introducing the President to family members including Jack, Brad’s young son and several engineers in the plant.

Obama came to Elyria and Lorain, Ohio, to connect with small business people who are the key to new hiring in this country. He gave a brief talk at Lorain Community College and chose to go to EMC Precision, which was on a short list of desirable sites to visit. The Ohlemachers had six days from the first call to prepare for the Big Boss.


While scrolling through Google, my brother Jim found a 644 Wickman 7-axis machine in use at a factory in Bournemouth, England. He visited the Web site and found a company called Hemp Technologies. Their product is “The Green Grinder” which according to the site is made of “high quality” HE30 aluminum and is then CNC turned and milled on a Wickman lathe. The site boasts, “The herb grinders are hand finished and feature our 31 spring steel pins.”

I wonder, is there enough demand in England for this product to justify buying a $250,000 CNC multi-spindle?

Question: If somebody contacted you to make a part used in cigarette manufacturing, would you take the contract?

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7 thoughts on “Industry Scuttlebutt

  1. Noah Graff

    That’s very true Jon. Nice way to address today’s other blog too. I’m a big fan of the stock guru Jim Cramer of Mad Money. He once brought up this story when he was talking about the subject investing in controversial companies like Philip Morris.

    He said one time, Al Gore asked him to put together a portfolio of stocks that were the “goody two shoes” of companies. Corporations that didn’t have any bad practices for the environment or society or whomever. He said that no matter how hard they looked, every company always had something they did wrong.

    So he says, invest in something you can make money in, and give half your profits to the Cancer Society if it makes you feel good.

  2. John Petro

    In 1990 I had an old friend call me asking for some work for a new Swiss shop he was starting up. I asked him to come in and I offered him some gun parts that would have been nice runs on an old Tornos M7. He refused the work on moral grounds and needless to say I offered him nothing more. I saw him recently and inquired how he was doing. He complained that he was out of work, nobody is hiring for the cam machines anymore. Is there a moral to this story?

  3. Steven Horn

    Of course I’d run a part for cigarette mfg., Cats or Guns. My job is to machine not to worry about what someone will do with my product. Years ago we made the tap for Beer Kegs. My father never drank, but he didn’t care if someone else did so he made the parts. Run the job and make some money that’s what I’m in business to do.

    The big question is would you allow President Obama in your shop for a photo op. When he has been systematically destroying this economy. That I don’t think I’d do. Watch what he does not what he says. How’s that “Hope & Change” working for you!

  4. Tim Breen

    Stop sending me the Obama propaganda, and these stupid emails, ah what am I saying, you retards don’t even read them.Lloyd, you may have not started speaking until the age of age 3, when are you going to start thinking? Oh how I miss Don Wood.

    Lee Machine

  5. The Green Hornet

    I think marijuana grinders and paraphernalia are a tough call. It is legal merchandise even if the ultimate usage is questionable. Cigarette machinery would pass my distaste quotient so I would make the stuff. Military parts for Iran would be unacceptable. French fry makers for McDonalds — no way.


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