This months employee spotlight features Tube Bending Specialists metal fabricator specialist, Michael Specht. Michael has been with the company since 2014, and over the years he has been here, his roles and responsibilities have grown and evolved. Michael is now the “go to fabricator” when it comes to any job that needs machining, drilling, etc.
In the recent months, Michaels roles have expanded immensely. He now has started learning the engineering side of the business (quoting, working with customers on required jobs), as well as attending events to help promote and educate about our business. The most recent event Michael attended was the “Wunderkammer Tech and Training Exploratorium.”
The Wunderkammer model asks technicians to enthusiastically spark the innate curiosity about unexplored living wage career opportunities for workforce ready youth. “Work-a-day jobs are explained while the technicians and youth engage in an activity that is representational of a typical workplace skill. This shared experience allows youth to feel welcome.” Technicians can begin to talk about their careers in production, training required and advancement opportunities to be achieved.
During this event, Michaels main job was to help the young people understand what it is we do, and how we do it. From showing them how to read a print, to actually hand bending the material to specific measurements. Without a doubt, Michael was definitely able to spark enthusiasm in the youth who attended this event.
Here is a quote from Michael speaking on his experience at the event, “ It was an honor being able to attend the Wunderkammer Tech & Training Exploratorium. Connecting with the minds of our next generation is a wonderful experience. I would certainly look forward to attending this event again.”
Tube Bending Specialists was founded in 1989 to address the growing need for a company that could provide precise and efficient bending services on a timely basis. We are a small family owned business that lives true to the core values we find crucial in doing business in a positive manner. In doing so, we intend to provide services that are a cut above the rest. We believe in deep collaboration and synergy among our team, which allows us to innovate in a way that others cannot.
Who we are: We are a small family-owned business that was founded in 1989 with three generations of expertise to assist you. We provide customer service that cannot be matched anywhere else in the market.
What we do: We provide technically advanced, precise, and efficient bending services to meet your needs.
Why it matters: Working as a team in partnership with you, we are able to collaborate and innovate meeting your needs.
All of these statements are what TBS and its staff hold true to each and every day. These statements are also why we believe that we have been in business for 27 years now. TBS has stayed true to the same mission, vision, and values from the beginning. Nichole Mundis will be the next generation to run TBS, and she plans on holding true to those same values George and Mary had throughout their successful careers. Nichole also plans on taking the company to the next level by building on those mission, vision, and values for the future.
Let’s dive into the nitty gritty. What is tube bending? How does it work? Who can do it? How long does it take?
The actual definition for tube bending is as follows; “Tube bending is the umbrella term for metal forming processes used to permanently form pipes or tubing. One has to differentiate between form-bound and freeform-bending procedures, as well as between heat supported and cold forming procedures.” This is the scientific definition, however, here at TBS, we like to think of tube bending as an art form. One misconception that people may have is that tube bending is a fairly quick and simple process. This could not be farther from the truth. There are many “tools” and honed skills that need to be used in order to bend a tube properly.
To take this a step further, each type and size of tubing needs to have a specific set of tooling that goes along with it. Now, you may be asking yourself, what is tooling?? Tooling is the term we use for the different tools that are needed in order to make sure that tube does not break, dent, and bends to the correct specifications. Tooling can include; mandrels, wiper dies, dies, etc.
One of the reasons that TBS has been able to stay in business since 1989 is because of the extensive tooling inventory that we carry. Having this extensive inventory, not only is an advantage for us when completing these jobs but is also a huge money saver for our customers. One piece of tooling can cost anywhere from $250 to $6000, so us having them ready to use for our customers, along with our experienced bending staff, can make a big difference!
Tube Bending Specialists was started 28 years ago with an idea and a dream. The founders, George and Mary Mundis, started this company in 1989 knowing it may not succeed but having the drive and skill set to make it a reality. George had worked at the “big” bending houses throughout Minnesota, and during that work, he noticed a gap in the market. That gap in the market was small to medium size runs that most other companies do not have the time or proper resources to run. The small runs most big bending houses scoff at, were the very thing that Tube Bending Specialists was able to grow, and ultimately thrive on.
George and Mary decided that their path would be to start small and ease their way into the market. In 1989 George went to an auction in Chicago and purchased the first bender that TBS would ever use. Luckily, this bender came with 2 full pallets full of tooling (the equipment specific to each kind of material and its size required for the bender to be able to bend it properly). The tooling that was bought to start the company is still being used to this day. Currently, we have 4 benders that we use in our shop, and we are continuously updating our equipment in order to keep up with the new workforce of Millenials that are emerging. These updates include 2 new CNC benders purchased within the past 3 years.
Tube Bending Specialists is now in the process of transitioning to a second generation family company. George and Mary are in the process of transitioning the company to their youngest daughter, Nichole Mundis. Nichole is now in the process of continuously improving the processes and equipment that we have here at TBS. Stay tuned for what is to come here at Tube Bending Specialists, the Midwest’s number one bending house.