Betterment learns about E-Crane

By Matt Echelberry
Inquirer Reporter

At the Galion Area Bet­ter­ment Com­mis­sion meet­ing on June 4, the group lis­tened to guest speaker Mark Osborne as he gave a pre­sen­ta­tion of his com­pany, Equi­l­brium Crane (E-Crane) Inter­na­tional. Com­mis­sion Pres­i­dent Don Trigg called the meet­ing to order and Osborne talked about how he started E-Crane after a visit to Europe, where he first saw a new tech­nol­ogy being uti­lized in Bel­gium and wanted to part­ner with a com­pany there. He founded E-Crane in Mar­ion in 2000 and has served as pres­i­dent ever since. He moved the office to Bucyrus in 2002, and has been in Galion since 2007.

Mark Osborne
Mark Osborne, pres­i­dent and founder of E-Crane, spoke to the Bet­ter­ment Com­mis­sion dur­ing its monthly meet­ing on June 4. By Rachel Mendell.

Mark Osborne, pres­i­dent and founder of E-Crane, spoke to the Bet­ter­ment Com­mis­sion dur­ing its monthly meet­ing on June 4. The E-Crane build­ing, located off of State Route 598 to the north of Galion, is 24,000 square feet and houses the company’s offices and ware­house. From the road, one can see a model crane sit­ting out­side of the build­ing. Each crane that the com­pany pro­duces is con­structed for a spe­cific project based on the customer’s needs. E-Crane offers sev­eral sizes: 700 Series, 1000 Series, 1500 Series, 2000 Series and 3000 Series. All of them are more energy effi­cient and longer-lasting than the tra­di­tional crane in order to opti­mize work capac­ity and keep costs down. Some mod­els can lift up to 50 tons.

He explained the physics prop­er­ties that allow the prod­uct to be more effi­cient: it uses coun­ter­weight to stay bal­anced, so a large, com­plex base is unnec­es­sary; it can be placed in tight or uncon­ven­tional spaces. This type of crane is sta­tion­ary but is capa­ble of a higher and far­ther reach than tra­di­tional cranes.

A mem­ber of the com­mis­sion asked what a typ­i­cal machine would be priced at. Osborne said it costs around $3 mil­lion for a 1,000 Series model. It takes four to five months to build smaller machines and the com­pany once built and deliv­ered two of the larger mod­els in one year.

The ser­vices E-Crane offers extend fur­ther than sim­ply build­ing the machines, of which 54 have been sold in the last 12 years. They ship their cranes to cus­tomers, assem­ble them on sight and train project work­ers to use them. They also offer main­te­nance and repair ser­vices, sell replace­ment parts, and per­form rebuilds when nec­es­sary. How­ever, Osborne said the cranes are very durable and easy to maintain.

Elec­tric util­ity com­pa­nies are E-Crane’s biggest cus­tomers, often using the machines for coal unload­ing. Recently, Osborne has been push­ing the com­pany into the recy­cling mar­ket for scrap han­dling. He said that Sher­win Alu­mina Cor­po­ra­tion, based in Texas, a tra­di­tional freight unloader with two of his company’s cranes, cut­ting its costs for unload­ing in half.

After Osborne’s pre­sen­ta­tion, Trigg had mem­bers offer reports for their respec­tive orga­ni­za­tions. For the Galion Cham­ber of Com­merce, Joe Kleinknecht said the Bit­ter­sweet Hen­house will be reopen­ing on Hard­ing Way East but pos­si­bly under a dif­fer­ent name. He thanked the com­mis­sion buy­ing the flower bas­kets that were hanged in the down­town square recently and J&L Green­house for donat­ing them and buy­ing two of the four baskets.

Dave Williamson from the Eco­nomic Devel­op­ment Office said that the work­force is the pri­mary focus right now. The “senior project” that the office is spear­head­ing will start its pilot pro­gram at some schools in the fall and it will become a grad­u­a­tion require­ment in the fol­low­ing school year. Galion City Man­ager Gene Toy said the water treat­ment plant is get­ting some equip­ment replaced and the projects on Port­land Way North are start­ing now that the school year has ended. He also said Med Flight will be start­ing its oper­a­tions at the Galion air­port this month.

Terry Grib­ble from the YMCA said that the sum­mer day camps have started and the com­mu­nity swim­ming pool at Heise Park has opened. County Com­mis­sioner Doug Weise­nauer gave an update on the roof remod­el­ing for the Courth­house. He said the com­mis­sion­ers have been meet­ing with archi­tects to replace the dome, which will be one color when the project is fin­ished. Jerry Morasko, CEO of Galion Com­mu­nity Hos­pi­tal, said the hospital’s bud­get has been approved. Con­struc­tion of the car­diac reha­bil­i­ta­tion unit is fin­ished and the new park­ing lot is almost done.

Patty Rice Groth spoke for the Galion Hos­pi­tal Aux­il­lary; pre-order forms from Schwann foods have been received so that the fundraiser for the hos­pi­tal can begin. Elaine Hot­ten­roth from the Galion Com­mu­nity The­atre announced the dates for the sum­mer musi­cal “1776”: June 22, 23, 29 and 30 and July 1 (2 p.m. mati­nee). Admis­sion is $15. The the­atre will also be host­ing the­atre work­shops July 9–20.

Vicki Eck­en­rod said the library is replac­ing its air con­di­tioner and reminded the com­mis­sion about the library’s sum­mer read­ing pro­gram. Jean Plack said the Golden Age Cen­ter will be host­ing ice cream socials and spon­sor­ing Music in the Park, which will be every Tues­day at 7 p.m. in the com­ing weeks. It is also hav­ing a car and motor­cy­cle show on July 1. Plack also announced that the Relay for Life will be June 15 and 16 this year. Glenn Cheesman, trustee of Polk Town­ship, said resur­fac­ing will be done on Mills­boro Road. He also said the the county needs a list of homes in need of demo­li­tion, a project that will be spent with state grant money received from a set­tle­ment with banks that fore­closed on homes. He said the county hopes to get rid of about 40 homes total.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tives from other groups were not in atten­dance to offer their reports. In new busi­ness, Trigg reminded the com­mis­sion that he will be mov­ing to Seville, Ohio. Toy is set to replace him as com­mis­sion pres­i­dent. The Galion Area Bet­ter­ment Com­mis­sion will hold its next meet­ing on Sep­tem­ber 10 at 12 p.m. in the meet­ing room of the hos­pi­tal cafeteria.

Source: Galion Inquirer


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