Fritz Carlson, President & CEO
Acme’s success story dates back to 1892, when Fritz Carlson’s great grandfather, a toolmaker by profession, immigrated from Sweden to Detroit. It was while he was doing some contract work for Henry Ford, during the early days of Ford Motor Company that he gained firsthand experience in metal finishing, buffing and polishing, and progressed to creating simple semiautomatic machines, eventually laying the cornerstone of Acme in 1910.
By now, the automotive industry had gained momentum in Detroit, and Acme’s business soared due to the requirements of polishing and buffing for automobile parts leading the way into other industry segments. Along the timeline, the inevitable need arose for a shift from manual to robotic automation finishing solutions to eliminate health-related risks and minimize labor costs, the downside of the hazardous metal finishing domain.
Fast forward to today; Acme, building on a 110-year-old legacy, is an automation technology ace in metal finishing with a global presence spanning across 20 markets. The company offers automation solutions through its robotic metal finishing systems for material removal such as belt grinding, polishing, deburring, buffing, cut-off, edge profiling, for achieving a smooth finish. “Acme’s state of the art automation solutions have brought forth manifold benefits in health, safety, and quality, alongside ending the reliability on metal finishers and minimizing labor costs,” extols Carlson, President and CEO of Acme Manufacturing.
On the product engineering front, once the clients send sample part drawings, the Acme team sets up labs in their R&D department to determine cycle time and finish and ascertain the extent of possible automation to ultimately design the solution.
Post product delivery, Acme’s full-fledged service team provides installation services and hands-on training for the equipment. The company’s maintenance contracts include the deployment of trained engineers to evaluate the robot cell on a periodic basis to ensure proper functioning and replacement of worn-out parts. “Our objective is to develop novel automated solutions to generate the lowest unit cost for the client with automation, irrespective of the industry,” says Carlson.
Acme’s esteemed clientele span many industries including; aerospace, medical implants, consumer products, firearms, heavy truck and off-road construction, just to name a few. These markets require innovative automation for their high-value parts in order to achieve new levels of repeatability. In the aerospace domain, Acme’s equipment performs robotic metal finishing ranging from deburring of turbine engine components to polishing airfoils after casting, forging or milling. Its medical implant finishing involves robotic manipulation of the orthopedic implant that replaces labor-intensive hand surface finishing operations. “We have installed numerous robotic systems in the foundry industry eliminating manual cutting and grinding, which had huge health and safety risks, bringing forth better yield and product quality,” states Carlson.
Acme’s authentic recipe perfected over time is the bedrock of its proficiency to churn out good quality parts at the lowest unit cost. The Acme team places customer loyalty as the center of focus and stands resolutely behind its products to ensure the successful completion of applications. This, along with its capability to pursue challenging applications, is what garners repeat orders from its loyal customer base.
With over 90 employees spread across Brazil, China, Singapore, India and Ireland among others, Acme is gearing up for a massive expansion plan across several other countries shortly. Their recently opened Singapore office deals with technical sales and support and research and development exclusively for the maintenance, repair, and overhaul in the aerospace industry. “We envision Singapore to be a springboard for us to pursue opportunities in the ASEAN countries like Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia,” concludes Carlson.