The future of American manufacturing may be predicted by the number of springs made
It seems like every week there’s a new metric pointing to manufacturing growth…or contraction. It all depends on the day.
Today, however, we found an indicator that was new even to us: Springs!
Not the flowing water kind of spring, but the springs that used to make jumping on the bed as a kid (or adult) so much fun.
“How can springs predict the movement of the manufacturing sector?” you ask. Great question!
Brian Dowling writes in the Hartford Courant:
Springs give life to products. They make light switches flip up, pens click, batteries stay connected. Their indispensability coupled with a rebound in a wide slew of markets is bringing good business to Connecticut.
'It's the engine of the component,' said Rick Zink, president of Tollman Spring in Bristol. 'Without it, you turn your plane down the runway, flip a switch and the lights don't turn on.'
In other words, a nearly endless number of products include springs as part of their essential makeup. More orders for springs means more (hopefully American-made) products being made with American-made parts.
Bristol, CT is home to upwards of 50 spring manufacturers, and according to the piece in the Courant, those companies are doing well.
Steve Dicke, head of sales at Connecticut Spring and Stamping in Farmington, said his sales jumped 27 percent last year. And that's on top of a 20 percent jump in 2011. He's hiring employees and buying equipment to keep up with the larger orders he's seeing from medical, commercial and auto industries.
It should be evident to all of our regular readers that there is no surefire way to predict movement in the manufacturing sector. The Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) is, however, committed to tracking hard data as it becomes available. Last week, we debuted the #AAMeter, our jobs tracker where we’ll document each and every new manufacturing job created in the next four years. Check out the #AAMeter.
Read the Hartford Courant piece here.
Pictured: A three-hole punch, which could not do its job without springs.
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