GKN brings wheels, hubs and spindles production under one roof in Iowa

06/01/2011 00:00
Land Systems

GKN Wheels has strengthened its manufacturing base in Armstrong, Iowa, by bringing its hubs and spindles production under one roof. In addition to improving efficiency, the move will deliver real benefits for customers.
The restructuring of the company’s North American manufacturing capabilities has been undertaken following an extensive value stream mapping exercise, which recognized that many manufacturers of agricultural machinery prefer to purchase hubs, spindles and wheels from the same source.
Tom Wonus, GKN Wheels’ plant manager in North America, said:
“We have used lean thinking to review our business processes in order to identify opportunities to improve efficiency and deliver benefits for customers.
“Bringing hubs and spindles production to Iowa means it is located much closer to the end user market, creating an opportunity to reduce lead times and further improve customer service. We can also use our onsite design staff to add value and to help turnaround orders reliably and efficiently.”
GKN Wheels, part of GKN Land Systems, has manufacturing centers in Armstrong and Estherville, Iowa and Wichita, Kansas, as well as the North American Technical Center in Woodridge, Illinois, where industry-leading wheel performance tests are performed using the latest computer-aided technology. Previously, hubs and spindles were manufactured at a separate site in Ohio and these production lines as well as technical support staff have now moved to Iowa.
As part of its product range, GKN Wheels manufactures the world’s largest hub and spindle – each weighing 200lb. The complete unit has a load-bearing capacity in excess of 35,000lb and is ideal for single-axle vehicles carrying out heavy-duty applications, such as grain carts, slurry wagons and towed scrapers.
GKN Wheels has been making wheels and customized hubs and spindles for off-highway machinery in the US for more than thirty years and the company is one of North America’s leading suppliers of wheels and wheel components for agricultural machinery. Part of a worldwide engineering company, GKN Wheels’ operation in the US is one of five global manufacturing centres.
Note to editors:
About GKN Land Systems
GKN Land Systems is a diversified manufacturer and service supplier to the global agricultural, construction, mining and automotive industries, employing over 6,000 people worldwide, across Europe, North America and Asia.
As well as manufacturing a range of PTO shafts, wheels, clutches, gearboxes, linkage systems, driveline components and vehicle structures, GKN Land Systems has an extensive aftermarket distribution and service business.
GKN Land Systems is part of GKN PLC and aims to be a global leader alongside the Driveline, Powder Metallurgy and Aerospace divisions, which operate at the forefront of their respective industries
For more information about GKN Wheels, please contact:
Christine Smart or Bailey Lamburn or Holly Jones at Smarts on +44 (0) 121 456 3199 or email: christine.smart@smarts.co.uk