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Casting operators take molten samples frequently throughout the casting shift to ensure the chemistry remains optimal for processing.


its three-year average DART rate has gone from 1.75 to 0.5. Some of the company’s facilities


are already VPP certified, including its metalcasting facility in Reynosa, Mexico, and the Stuarts Draft and Nacogdoches metalcasting plants will be the next to apply. Te Nacogdoches plant is a three-


shift green sand casting operation that manufactures bronze pressure-rated valves, cast fittings and ball valves using automatic electric induction furnaces. NIBCO adheres to the PPE program the AFS Safety & Health 10-Q committee compiled, for its melting departments. “We pour over 2,000 degree


A MODERN APPROACH HILL


Ross Martin, former NIBCO president and grandfather of current Chairman and CEO Rex Martin, first introduced the concept of employee ownership in 1924. A revolutionary idea at the time, it continues to be an important part of the company’s culture. He is known for stating, “The best product of NIBCO is a good person.” Today, NIBCO is an ESOP (employee stock ownership program) company with more than 3,000 employees serving commercial, industrial and institutional construction as well as residential and irrigation markets from 10 manufactur- ing plants in the U.S., Mexico and Poland. Its products are manufactured under a Quality Management System conforming to current ISO-9001 standards. During Rex Martin’s tenure, since 1986, he has streamlined processes with lean manufacturing, expanded production and the global footprint, and brought the company into the Digital Age with enterprise resource planning using electronic data interchange and vendor-managed inventory.


20 | MODERN CASTING July 2013


metal and we’ve got a cooling area where any associate may go to cool down, at any time of the day,” said Nacogdoches plant manager Rudy Smith. “We keep a refrigerator full of bottled water and make mixes available for electrolytes, but you can do too much of that, so we try to monitor the intake.” Cleaning and finishing are done in an air condi- tioned environment. Stuarts Draft is a unique


operation that has transitioned to permanent mold, continuous casting of copper components over the past three years. While it has the greatest number of NIBCO associates, most of the handling occurs in machining. “After [melting], probably your


biggest concern is making sure peo- ple have proper lifting techniques,” said David Goodling, vice presi- dent, supply chain. “It’s so easy in a foundry or metals operation, if you don’t use proper lifting techniques, to injure your back.” NIBCO has reduced those injuries significantly since the late 1990s. “We also look at cuts, and we are always aggressively


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