Check out the two-page feature article on Albina Co., Inc. in the May Southwest Edition of A2Z Manufacturing Magazine. We had such a great time working with Linda and Kim putting the article together.
The article highlights several projects that we have participated in specifically in the states of Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico. Our company history, philosophy and future goals are also touched on in the piece.
We just returned from the happiest place on Earth (Disney World) and while we should be rested after 9 days of vacation, we are exhausted!!! Disney, just like everything else in our lives, involved strategic planning almost six months in advance just to ensure we could have a hot meal and ride the most popular rides. And even with all that planning and preparation, Jaime and I found ourselves constantly evaluating the efficiencies of the parks, the bottlenecks we faced, and how we thought Disney could improve the experience of park-goers. Don’t get me wrong, we had great family time, and Disney is one of the most successful companies around, but I think the lesson we took away from the trip is that even if we think we have things all figured out and are doing things the way we think you want them done, we can’t rest on our laurels and we need to be constantly evaluating how we can make your experience in doing business with us an enjoyable (and dare I say “magical”) one.
On our trip, we were constantly on a roller coaster, jumping from one ride to the next, never a dull moment. That is the same feeling we have about how the spring is shaping up here at Albina Co. We have so many great and interesting projects going on right now! We are rockin’ & rollin’ on so many different types of material! So many industries…agricultural, structural, aerospace, mining, food processing, and so much more! Below are just a few projects we shipped out recently!
Albina Co., Inc. is drawing a lot of attention locally and nationwide as we celebrate 80 years in the steel bending business. Our story is one of the unique ones as we span three generations of Smith owners! Check out the article on the Portland Business Tribune website.
We recently joined the USFA (Utah Steel Fabricators Association) to assist in the effort to support and improve the steel fabrication industry in Utah. USFA members are comprised of steel distributors, steel processors, steel fabricators, and providers of many products and services related to metal fabrication. This is an exciting opportunity to network with other folks in the steel industry and to help strengthen the educational core in Utah’s steel industry.
Albina Co., Inc., located outside Portland, Oregon, has been providing customers with innovative, quality curved steel services and products since 1939. A family owned and operated, third generation business, run by Brian Smith, specializes in structural steel, tube and pipe bending, plate rolling and fabrication. Albina produces virtually any metal component that needs to bend or curve without the use of pre-formed fittings. Albina has provided curved steel for many high-profile buildings, stadiums and structures in the United States and Canada. Albina was the steel bender of choice on the recently completed Amazon Spheres in Seattle,Washington.
Albina is an industry leader in research and development and in 2018, purchased an MCP30 by Davi, the first type of bending machine in the United States with a “iRoll” smart camera system, allowing operators to view the part being bent compared to a radius template on the control screen. The machine has the ability to “learn and remember” how different materials bend, where the rolls need to be positioned, and how much spring back is associated with a bend / material.
Albina also purchased a Bend-Tech Dragon A400 Plasma Cutter, a commercial grade CNC tube cutting ,engraving, and marking machine with the world’s most powerful CAD/CAM software. Other new equipment included new welders, jib cranes, induction heating coils, an electric forklift and 40 sets of tooling.
Albina was an instrumental player in the development of the first ever Design Guide of its kind in the United States offering information on the fabrication, design and detailing of curved members. Design Guide 33 “Curved Member Design” was released in October 2018 by the AISC Bender/Roller committee and is an invaluable resource for the industry!
Albina not only has one of the newest, most technologically advanced machines on the market, Albina also has one of the oldest, custom made bending machines ever created! In honor of the 80th Anniversary, Albina created a museum on site, called “The Smith-sonian”, honoring the family name and housing one of the first ever pieces of equipment that Albina owned and used to bend materials. Brian’s grandfather built the“Model-T” bending machine in the early 1940’s utilizing the transmission and differential from a “Model-T” Ford. This machine was used until the 1990’s to bend various materials such as pipe, tube, and square and rectangular hollow structural steel. “The Smith-sonian” is ready for visitors. Cheers to 80 Years!
With every New Year comes excitement about the anticipation of what is to come, but also a bit of caution as to what may lie ahead. That is why we took two New Year’s pictures this year as a family! We must stick to what we know to keep our family and business strong, but we must also have the fortitude to take a leap when a project or challenge comes our way. The uncertain economic and social times we live in pose challenges each and every day, but I am confident in the companies we partner with, the people we work with, and the projects we invest in. Maintaining a strong steel industry, just like raising a strong family, is a collaborative effort. All hands on deck! Lets work together to get through these uncertain times and come out stronger on the other end!
And with every New Year comes reflection about the year prior. 2018 was one for the record books as we worked on many exciting curved steel projects. Albina was fortunate to team up with some great fabricators on a massive project in California this last year. The project (to be named at a later date) consisted of 100’s of trucks, thousands of pieces and millions of pounds of bent steel. This was the largest project Albina has processed to date and we look forward to working on more projects that have this level of complexity and excitement in 2019, the 80th Anniversary of our company!! Cheers to 80 Years!
In honor of our 80th Anniversary, Albina has created a museum on site, called “The Smith-sonian”, which honors the family name and houses one of the first ever pieces of equipment that Albina owned and used to bend materials. John Smith, Brian’s grandfather, built the “Model-T” bending machine in the early 1940’s utilizing the transmission and differential from a “Model-T” Ford. This machine was used to roll/bend various materials such as pipe, tube, and square and rectangular HSS (hollow structural steel). The machine would pull material around a bend die resulting in a smooth radius finished good. The “Model-T” was in operation at Albina until the 1990’s when it was replaced by more efficient bending equipment. “The Smith-sonian” is ready for visitors. Stop by to see us! Cheers to 80 Years! You can check out a virtual tour on YouTube.
Albina provided 41,000# of bent steel to a Arizona fabricator for the St. Augustine Cathedral Square Conference Center and Offices project located in Tucson, AZ.
Albina was responsible to bend 13 different materials including angle, square tubing and rectangular tubing. Sizes ranged from 2” x 1½” angle up to TS 16” x 4” rectangular tubing. This project shipped on multiple trucks, but to help reduce freight costs to our customer we were able to combine the different releases with other goods shipping to the area allowing our customer to pay for partial trucks vs. full trucks.
The bent steel is part of a $12 million, 50,000 square foot four story complex (click here to see rendering). The first, third and fourths floors will house the cathedral offices, while a 500 seat conference and education center will reside on the second floor.
The Bend-Tech Dragon A400 is a commercial grade CNC tube cutting, engraving, and marking machine with the world’s most powerful CAD/CAM software. The machine will arrive in mid-November and is capable of cutting holes, notches and other designs on Round, Square, and Rectangular tubes. The machine can handle a material weight up to 400 lbs due to its heavy frame and support gate. The machine’s marking system is used for bend location marking and part identification. To see this amazing machine in action, click on this YouTube video from Bend-Tech.Yet another example of how we are willing to continue to add technology and additional machinery to service all of our customers needs!