In case you haven’t heard, Master Spring has recently moved locations – a move that could certainly be categorized as emotional.
We had been producing springs and wire forms in the River Grove location since 1950. With the passing of Emil and Marge years earlier, leaving the old building meant leaving a little bit of the Burda’s history behind. Many people worked in that space longer than they lived in their homes. It was a place that echoed the voice of Emil teaching his son Jeff. It was a place where families came together to work. A place where joys were shared and hard times were shouldered. Many people walked in as teenagers and now were married supporting kids and grandkids. Would change be easy? Would the move be worth it?
Meet Emil Burda: The Founder of Master Spring and Wire form
Emil Burda founded Master Spring & Wire Form Co. in 1945. Working as a foreman and set-up man at a large spring manufacturing plant, he was unhappy at the way smaller orders were handled. He saw an opportunity. With the help from his father who worked at a foundry, they made a coiling machine in his garage and the company was founded.
Emil liked to say, “We can do the possible quickly. The impossible might take a little longer.” He took great pride in Master Spring’s ability to solve tough spring & wire form problems that larger companies chose to “No Quote”.
A Reputation for Quality Meant Outgrowing Our Location
Growing slowly and steadily over the years, Master Spring had filled the River Grove building to the maximum. What Emil started with one coiling machine was now a cutting edge firm with a collection of the most advanced wire forming equipment from all over the world. And it had the best skilled employees to run them. It seemed the decision to move was born out of necessity. Easy or not, change was going to come.
The building Steve Skolozynski found was perfect in size and location. Located in Itasca, just west of Chicago, cars travel on Interstate Highway 290 and the Elgin-O’Hare Expressway, while airplanes from O’Hare International Airport soar overhead. Close to our best vendors, Itasca was a great choice.
Gaurav Vijay, Continuous Improvement Manager, out of University of Michigan with a degree in Industrial Engineering planned the move precisely. Machine locations and work centers were taped out to scale while electricians installed the necessary lines. Adopting the principles of lean manufacturing, consideration was given to how product should move through the process. On moving day, trucks arrived in River Grove and were able to move the machines to their exact locations in Itasca. The plan was so successful that the machines were “dropped” and plugged in, never missing a beat.
Now, with a month having passed since the move, our machines continue to hum along. And while the location may be different, it’s important to note that not much else has change since Emil first took up shop more than half a century ago. Our Itasca location has now become the place where our families come together to work, and we continue to take pride in solving the tough spring & wire form problems that larger companies chose to “No Quote”.