But for The Garland Co. Inc., innovating was no small task. In fact, everything about The Healy, Garland's innovative production line, has been huge, from the new building it demanded to the results Garland has seen.
In December 2000, The Garland Co. opened a brand-new production facility to house The Healy, a retrofitted, state-of-the-art production line named after plant manager Dan Healy. This line produced Garland's mainstay product, modified bitumen membranes, using an industry first -- three mixing blades moving at varying speeds and shears.
This process broke down the high-polymer rubber more thoroughly and consistently, providing a higher-quality membrane.
Since the introduction of The Healy, The Garland Co. has increased production of its rolled membranes, watching output double between August 2001 and August 2002. In 2004, The Healy produced an estimated 428,000 rolls, still under the line's maximum capacity of 650,000 rolls.
With improvements, Garland expects The Healy to be able to produce 725,000 rolls by 2007, more than 150 percent of current production.
The line also reduced waste, cutting energy use by 20 percent and scrap production by a full percentage point, saving nearly 4,000 membrane rolls. And the new line improved worker safety. On older lines, the mineral surfacing applied to some of Garland's membranes was moved mechanically onto the line, allowing dust to fly. On The Healy, the surfacing is applied using an airtight air flow process that prevents dust from escaping into the air.
One of The Healy's best features is that it combined two formerly separate lines into a single one, giving the line more versatility. The Garland Co. expects to be able to develop more diverse rolled good products in the future using The Healy, making the company, and the impact of its newest line, even larger.
How to reach: The Garland Co., (216) 641-7500 or www.garlandco.com