Livonia, MI – September 2015 - Rob Freyvogel, founder and president of Carbinite Metal Coatings in Renfrew PA, has a two-fold dream. His first dream is to provide a superior service to his customers by having a superior work place for his employees. His second dream, his passion actually, is to push the limits of human innovation in motorsports.
Freyvogel founded Carbinite Metal Coatings in his garage in December of 1997. Designing workholding fixtures as a mechanical engineer, he saw a need for a niche application that he named Carbinite. Freyvogel states, “Carbinite is a hard textured metal surface coating that can decrease wear or increase grip on a wide variety of tools and fixtures.” The company quickly outgrew the family garage, and currently employs 12 workers. “Treating our employees and customers well is essential. We value the skill each employee brings to our shop, and want to share our success with them. We place a high priority on making sure our customers get the service they need quickly and at a fair price.”
Carbinite LSR (Land Speed Racing) is a side venture with a volunteer crew led by Freyvogel and funded primarily by Carbinite Metal Coatings. Over the last 5 years, Freyvogel and the crew designed and built the Carbinite LSR Streamliner (lovingly referred to as the Carbiliner) to set the Wheel-Driven Record at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Wendover, Utah. The current Wheel-Driven record is 458 MPH. The Carbiliner crew’s goal is to crush that record by running 500+ MPH. Unfortunately the weather is not as passionate as the team; rain has caused the cancellation of the record-setting events for the last two years.
The slogan for Carbinite LSR is “To Serve. To Learn. To Inspire.” During the LSR off-season, the Carbiliner visits local high schools, tech schools, and colleges. Freyvogel presents the project, its innovations, and its development from conception to present. The students have the opportunity to ask questions, sit in the car, and have their pictures taken. “Part of the mission of Carbinite LSR includes educating young people. We want to inspire students to pursue careers in science, technology, and manufacturing,” states Freyvogel.
The Carbiliner is definitely a conversation-starter, and is what sparked the relationship between Realtrac Performance ERP and Carbinite. The Carbiliner was exhibited as part of the education outreach at the 2014 Smartforce Student Summit, held in conjunction with the International Manufacturing Technology Show. Both Realtrac and Carbinite exhibited at IMTS as well.
Bob Sakuta, Owner of Realtrac, visited the Carbiliner and was interested in the history and goals of the project. Andy Hixon, Operations Manager at Carbinite, was interested in Realtrac. He states, “We had been searching for a shop management solution for almost a year. Most were either beyond our budget or were too cumbersome and had too many features we would never use. We needed to implement a system without much disruption to our shop floor. The software also had to analyze our unique data since our shop is not a typical machine shop.” Both parties were sufficiently impressed, and, within a few hours of meeting, Realtrac and Carbinite were officially partnered.
Carbinite has been extremely happy with the ease of Realtrac’s implementation. “Our administrative staff found Realtrac simple to set up. It was obvious how it all worked together,” states Freyvogel. “Our shop floor employees were trained and using Realtrac in just a few hours. Within a week, Realtrac started analyzing the profitability of our jobs. Everyone at Realtrac wants us to succeed, and has been extremely helpful and knowledgeable. Realtrac is helping us to see where our shop is doing well, and where it is not efficient or profitable. We now can decide where we need to change our shop to make it a better workplace for our employees. Realtrac Performance ERP gives us a streamlined manufacturing workplace, which means better service for our customers. It’s a win-win situation.”
Carbinite will be at the Bonneville Salt Flats for various events in September and October. The Carbiliner will be joining Realtrac at school craft college in Livonia on October 9th and 10th for the Mind Trekkers event in conjunction with Michigan Tech University S.T.E.M. program. At this event, K – 12 schools through collegiate program students will have an opportunity to have a hands on experience with cool projects and new technologies.
The Mind Trekkers team members act as role models and near-peer mentors as they help students define their interests and aptitudes in these high energy events full of activities lasting between 30 seconds to 3 minutes.
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Based in Livonia, Michigan, REALTRAC Performance ERP is a software company specializing in manufacturing software for machine shops, job shops and make-to- order metal working manufacturers. The company was founded in the heart of a machine shop and has served the manufacturing industry for over three decades. The program is used by thousands of users across North America. REALTRAC 10 was released in March 2014.
For More Information, contact Jeremy Klosowski at (734) 793-3811 or firstname.lastname@example.org