My father, Ed, started this business back in 1947 after returning home from WWII. He worked on anything that would fit through the front door of the shop, and some in the driveway that couldn’t. Back then, he did everything from overhauling a carburetor on an 8N Ford tractor to rebuilding an injection pump on a GM diesel.
When my brother, Bob, and I bought the business from Dad in 1978, we started specializing in automatic transmissions, torque converters, electronic fuel injection, and chassis dynamometer testing.
It all started with converters. Even if we could get our transmissions to last, the converters were a weak link right from the start. There were a couple local construction companies that had a fleet of Dodge trucks, and they actually left a few with us over the winter so we could develop better parts and get a converter to hold. I don’t know how many times we had those transmissions in and out, but we found a combination that would work for a basic tow and work truck.
At that time, we were working on everything from automobiles and pickups to tractors, so we weren’t afraid to get into the diesel market. We bought a small ad in Turbo Diesel Register and eventually started to get a couple of calls. I mean, we probably started out with only one call a month. Then it was one call a week. Then, after a couple of years and building a reputation, it was multiple calls a week and diesel transmissions became a large part of our business.
We were still relatively small-time. Most of the business we had was in the radius of a couple hundred miles to our shop. We noticed however, that people started driving from further and further away to pick up converters or transmissions from us. We knew there was a number of good shops in the Midwest, so we eventually made the decision to start sending transmissions out, with the caveat that we walk the installer through the installation the first few times. Again, a couple of years of doing this resulted in an installer network that stretched all the way from New York to California.
Throughout this process, we had developed a pretty good product, but there were always things I wasn’t happy with. Many manufacturers we bought parts from didn’t make reliable parts because of cost. I realized that since most of what we sold went into trucks that were used for businesses, the owners would see a value in a vehicle that didn’t have to spend any time in the shop or go back for additional repairs.
Eventually I got fed up and just started building parts myself that I knew would work. My background in automotive repair gave me a good idea of where the weak points were and we were able to develop our own torque converters, flexplates, valve bodies, and internal parts that worked exceedingly well. We also expanded in areas we knew about. We built Dodge converters, so when the opportunity came along to get in the GM and Ford converter market, we jumped in there too.
I guess that brings us to the business point of things. I think a big reason that we’ve had so much success is that I trusted good and honest people to do good and honest work. My family (many of whom work or worked here) and friends have been a huge help, but I wasn’t afraid to make connections outside of my own circle, and almost all of those paid off. You have to be careful about how you grow your business, and as you do, you’ll need a great staff. I owe most of my growth to them. A lot of times the opportunities to grow will be obvious, but you have to work hard and take full advantage of the situation to realize results.
We have now been in the automotive industry for over 75 years, focusing on diesel transmission components and torque converters for the past 40. Here we value quality over quantity, which is why we use multiple specialty tools and in-house equipment that allow us to manufacture and test our products well beyond what others can do. Because of our expertise in these areas, along with our top-of-the-line equipment and tools, we have become the top producer of quality diesel torque converters and transmission components.
Our workmanship, attention to detail, extensive equipment knowledge and work ethic has assured our customers for over 75 years that they are receiving the highest caliber of products and service there is."
~ Dave Goerend