When a precision industry has been around for more than 60 years and continues to thrive, you know it has been doing something right. This can clearly be said of DANCO Precision, Inc., a privately held company in Phoenixville, PA with nearly limitless capabilities in custom stamping for laminations and assemblies. The company uses PQ Systems software products to assure accuracy in gage calibration and quality in its products.
Responding to customer needs for sophisticated laminations and assemblies, DANCO utilizes some 350+ gages to assure accuracy in its calibration systems, depending on GAGEpack to assure that accuracy. “We use it hard,” says Bob Barandon, Director of Quality Assurance and Reliability for the company, noting that the software is “practical and easy to use. We love it.”
This was not always the case. When Barandon came to the company in 1988, gage records were maintained on 3” x 5” cards, he recalls. “We had a skeleton of an inspection department—hard-working and committed employees with little in the way of technologies that are standard now.” With customers whose products range from parts for the Hubble telescope to nuclear ships and gyros/servos, DANCO needed assurance of accuracy in its gages, and GAGEpack has served that need for years.
It may be hard to conceive of the flexibility demanded in responding to customers with such a wide range of requirements as those whom DANCO serves. Diverse materials—silicon, nickel, cobalt—used in extremely small to very large applications, and quantities ranging from a few prototypes (WEDM / Laser) to production runs of 50 to 100,000 pieces are daily challenges that DANCO meets. “We have to work closely with our customers,” Barandon says, since these customers develop the specifications for all of DANCO’s products. Interaction with customers may, in fact, be the key to the company’s longevity. Employees must not only understand the products, but they must constantly be in tune with what customers want. The company is committed to a wide variety of regular training experiences for its employees in order to assure that customer needs are fully satisfied and that employees understand the importance of customer relationships.
While DANCO’s outputs may not have high profile status to most people, they are nonetheless found in countless products used every day as components in electrical products, including generators, that people depend on without awareness of their complexity or the intricate laminations that compose them. Hydrogen and nitrogen atmosphere annealing furnaces, annually calibrated and certified, contribute to the company’s ability to deliver optimum electrical and magnetic properties to the customer’s specifications.
Barandon points out that software products from PQ Systems, including SQCpack and CHARTrunner as well as GAGEpack, have been “extremely important” in the company’s success. He says he loves the reports that he’s able to derive from the software, knowing that he can give these reports to customers with confidence that they will be clearly understood. “We really rely on calibration certificates and other reports,” he says.
Because DANCO serves the aerospace industry, it is making progress toward AS9100 and Nadcap certification, a global cooperative accreditation program for aerospace engineering, defense, and related industries.
Founded by the Danco family in 1949, DANCO Precision, Inc. has continued to evolve along with the industries that it serves. Its technologies have become far more sophisticated than those of its earliest days, and the company’s learning continues to advance. Though it may be nearing the traditional retirement age of 65 years, it is clear that DANCO Precision will serve its customers for a long time into the future.
PQ Systems is pleased to be a part of the DANCO tradition of quality and customer service.