As part of its 100th Anniversary Celebration, Lenox invited business press editors to its East Longmeadow, Mass., facility on July 13-July 14 to see its recent product line extensions and expansion of manufacturing lines in its 600,000-sq-ft facility on 14 acres.
The new products included the new Gold Power Arc Curved Reciprocating Saw Blades (left), promoted as delivering up to two times longer life than the company’s standard straight blades; the carbide Cast Master XL Band Saw Blades for high-speed aluminum cutting applications; and the CircTech Precision CM200 circular saw blade for cutting high-alloy steels and tool steels.
Lenox is particularly proud of the consistent upgrades it has made in the manufacturing plant, where Newell Rubbermaid has invested $130 million since it bought American Saw and Manufacturing Co. from the Davis family in 2003. Along with the latest pick-to-light warehouse technology and solar panels on the roof, the company has been investing in new production line equipment to handle the miles of band saw blades and thousands of reciprocating blades that it produces annually as efficiently as possible.
Lenox’s execs are quite proud of the company’s long heritage in East Longmeadow, a postcard-pretty New England town in western Massachusetts. Bill Burke, Newell Rubbermaid COO and group president – Tools, told guests that Lenox has more than 20 families working at the facility that each have a combined total of over 50 years of service, and that the Davis family that founded the business used to give out winter coats to employees to help them stay healthy during cold New England winters. And to this day, the orange juice in the vending machines still costs 25 cents, the same price it was decades ago when the Davis family first started offering it to employees so they would get their daily dose of Vitamin C.
No visit to Lenox would be complete without meeting Lee Breton, AKA “the Hackman,” who for more than 20 years promoted the strength and durability of the company’s saw blades by cutting through an AMC Gremlin, double-decker bus, airplane, tobacco barns and railroad box cars and many other cars. Hackman, now retired, made a grand entrance into the Lenox Innovation Center where the editors’ meeting was being held, quickly cutting through a door and emerging to a round of applause, trusty reciprocating saw in hand.
Below is video of some of Hackman's Greatest Cuts: