WILLMAR—Grabbing onto business opportunities that blend innovative engineering skills and rapidly advancing 3D printing technology, three brothers are expanding their role in digital manufacturing that could be a game-changer for all manufacturers—and a benefit to consumers. During a media tour Tuesday that included a live, virtual broadcast, Carl, Brian and Sean Douglass talked about their expanding business, DI Labs, at their new location in Willmar. DI Labs was started in 2013 in Spicer. As
Work to move to company’s Minnesota plant Farm equipment maker Buhler Industries plans to gather its U.S. manufacturing work into one plant in Minnesota this summer and halt operations at nearby Fargo, N.D. The Winnipeg company, whose product lines include Versatile tractors and sprayers and Farm King application, tillage and hay equipment, said Monday it’s “optimizing” its U.S. production to boost efficiency and cut overhead costs at its factory at Willmar, Minn., about 140 km west of
A small 3D print shop in central Minnesota is building parts for some of the state’s biggest companies. At DI Labs’ office about two hours west of Minneapolis, machines operate 24 hours a day printing prototypes of parts and thousands of other components for 3M, Toro, and a handful of other companies throughout the Upper Midwest and across the country. The company has built everything from full-sized aircraft fuselage to jigs and fixtures for manufacturing. Last month, DI Labs rounded out its
WILLMAR — The spark of inspiration can happen at any time and be caused by the smallest of things. For Steve Vossen and Julie Vossen-Henslin of Willmar, it was the two inches of shampoo left in the bottle after the pump stopped working. “I used to cut the bottle off,” Vossen said. At first, trying to solve the problem was just an idea, nothing concrete. Then the husband and wife team started thinking about it a bit more seriously. “It continued to bother us,” Vossen-Henslin
WILLMAR—A groundbreaking public/private partnership between local companies and Willmar Public Schools has begun with its first dozen students at Willmar Senior High. The new Manufacturing and Production course this fall will take students who have an interest in areas like welding, drafting, mechanics and construction and give them a hands-on learning experience with five local businesses. If this first class goes well, the program could eventually expand to other area schools. There’s a
WILLMAR—West Central Steel of Willmar is expanding for the ninth time in its nearly 40-year history, bringing more services to its customers and more jobs to the region. “It has been quite a project,” said Jeff Pattison, president of West Central Steel. The latest project has been in planning for several years, but officially kicked off in fall 2016, when the company obtained over five acres of land next to its current location on U.S. Highway 12 near the Willmar Industrial Park. This
During 2016, the EDC has been working to assist several expansions, including the Kandi Mall Rehabilitation Project, Glacial Ridge Hospitality, and the ERC expansion. Each of these projects not only offers significant capital investment, but also involves a lot of planning and interaction with businesses. Through these projects and more, around 350 new jobs will be generated in Kandiyohi County during the next two years. The EDC is committed to working with the business community to create opportunities
The University of Minnesota Extension’s report shows manufacturing leads the Mid-Minnesota region in total output at 41% and is second in employment at 14%, just behind health care at 16%. Read the full report here.