Ceco Door gains new production line

Wednesday, December 1, 2004

MILAN, Tenn. - Ceco Door Products has undergone an extensive overhaul and an $8.5-million investment to install a completely new automated door line. It is an upgrade that enables the company to build one door at a time with any lock or hardware system.

The upgrade represents the largest investment made by Ceco Door’s parent company, Assa Abloy this year. Assa Abloy also owns of HID Corp., Indala and OmniKey.

“What we’ve seen in our industry is a consistent move from a stock product to a much more customized door solution,” said Larry Denbrock, president of Ceco Door.

Ceco Door began working on the design of its new automated door line in late 2002 to replace an older automated system designed in the late 1970s, when a quicker turnaround time on product was not as in demand, according to Mark Drake, director of manufacturing and engineering for Ceco Door.

“Its limitations was the changeover from one type of product to another,” said Drake, of the older line. “It was very time consuming, from 15 minutes to two hours.”

Less than two years after placing an order for the customized line, it was ready to install this summer. But it was a process that took months. It took four days to remove the old product line, 30 days to install the new line and 30 days to get it running.

In a few short months since the line began operating in August, Ceco Door has already seen a difference. Its standard 10-day delivery for a stock door has been cut in half to five days. Producing a custom door with any lock or hardware has gone from taking four weeks to just days.

It will only take two years for Ceco Door to see its return on investment, according to Denbrock, but the long term benefit is the company can now be more responsive to its customers’ needs and to produce a higher quality product.

“This is an alignment of where the market is going,” said Denbrock. “It’s the increasing demands of end users that have customized security solutions.”