Composiflex Shipping Composites Worldwide
You may never know what goes on inside the brick and mortar of the Composiflex building.
"Typically when I talk to people or people find out what we're doing here, I think you could safely use the word shocked. They don't realize that there's anything like this going on in Erie, Pennsylvania," said owner and president Alan Hannibal.
But when we take a look inside this 52,000 square foot facility, we find some products that we've all probably encountered at least once in our lives, without even realizing it.
"We make advanced composite products," said Hannibal.
"One of the easiest ways to explain it is, almost everybody has had a CT scan or MRI, something like that. Our tables, our products, are actually in those machines," said CNC supervisor, Richard Welton.
Beyond the tables, beds and components for medical scanners, they also make composite industrial parts and springs. They're even starting to create a name for themselves making life saving military equipment like ballistic shields and vehicle armor.
"My son-in-law, as a matter of fact, was in the military. And it was neat because some of the things we actually made, he saw there. So it gives you a sense of pride to know that you're making things that help keep our soldiers safe," said Welton.
Unlike some manufacturers who spit out thousands of the same products, Hannibal says their method is different.
"We don't just manufacture things for people, we integrate our engineering with theirs to come up with the best product that's going to suit their needs," he said.
Their method of manufacturing doesn't just rely on machines either. You'll find many employees using their own hands.
"Even though everyone here is running automated machines, they're still all trained in the hands on of it," said Welton.
And Hannibal is committed to keeping these hands-on jobs, right at home.
"I've always felt good about the fact that we can employ people here. I have no real desire to move the company out of here and hopefully I'll never have to sell the company or be forced into that kind of situation," he said.