A Trip through Flowmaster’s Production Facility
Flowmaster started and proudly remains American made. Ray Flugger began making mufflers in an 800 sq ft barn in California, expanded to a 300 employee manufacturing facility in Santa Rosa, California and eventually moved everything over to the 165,000 square foot facility in West Sacramento where we now operate. While the climate of the automotive industry has changed slightly, Flowmaster’s production ethics have not. Flowmaster technology continues to be produced domestically, innovating in-house, and bringing new products and product categories to market year after year.
The advent of robotics has revolutionized manufacturing. For Flowmaster it has exponentially empowered employees to create, produce, and ensure quality. When walking through the many departments in Flowmaster’s West Sacramento production facility, one will notice an array of blue robotic machinery and yellow robotic machinery. The blue machines have been created internally and the yellow have been purchased. However, most if not all yellow robotics have been modified and repurposed to improve our manufacturing processes.
The machinery is not the only tenured thing in Flowmaster production. The longevity of employees that have remained over the years and through the moves is astounding. “Some employees have been with the company since the “barn days” and being part of a company that has gone from building 20 mufflers a week to 15,000 a week creates a strong connection between themselves and the work they do,” mentions Mark Rogers, Flowmaster’s V.P. of Operations.
While integrity in work ethic is important to Flowmaster employees, so is product performance. Rogers continues, “Employees are not willing to look the other way in regard to product quality, 100% of the products must be made 100% correctly.”
Among the extravagantly large machines energetically pumping out products, is an industrial mandrel bender that bends tubing at an amazingly efficient rate and prevents restriction found in lesser, compression-style bends. This machine was featured on the TV show, “How It’s Made.”
As you continue through the plant, employees can be found painting and hand-welding products that are later scrutinized by the Quality Assurance team. This guarantees that every part will perform to top-tier expectations.
Of course, finished products must be boxed and once they have been, you can’t forget about the Shipping department. These men and women work tirelessly day and night to fulfill the growing demand for Flowmaster products.
Change is inevitable and, at this point, the “barn days” may be a distant memory, but Flowmaster is still the same performance-minded, family-oriented company that it always has been…just a little bigger and better thanks to improvements in technology and our dedicated staff.
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