Mobile Equipment Repair Industrial Contractors, or M.E.R., is a family owned and operated business. In 2014 Joe and Jean Tepper, with the help of their four sons, started the company. When M.E.R was created, Joe’s vision was to provide companies with turn-key solutions for all of their project needs.
Joseph, Brandon, Kyle, and Josh are learning the trade from their father, President and owner Joe Tepper, who has more than 30 years of experience with installation, maintenance, repair, and relocation of industrial plants and equipment. An investment in several new KAAST Machine Tool machines is helping the Teppers take their offerings to the next level. “This new[HBS A 230] fully automatic bandsaw is a workhorse,” Brandon says. “We used to use a cutting torch and need to manually measure each segment [of pipe or profile]. With this saw, we set up the length once, tell it how many pieces we want, and then can walk away and work on something else. With such a small crew, it really helps to not have to have somebody standing there.”
Also new on the floor is aPS 65 DP Ironworker. “We are not using this machine to its full capabilities yet, even though we use it frequently. The machine allows for two operators to use different stations at the same time, but we just don’t have the floor space for two operators. I think when we move to a bigger shop, we will really be able to see all that it can do.” With 5 stations (punching, flat shearing, angle shearing, section bar shearing, and notching), the PS line of KAAST Ironworkers are quickly becoming a machine-shop must have. KAAST offers many dies, and the machine will accept custom dies as well, expanding the capabilities of this multi-tasker even farther.
The new rockstar of the shop though is most definitely the new Ajan Plasmasonic CNC Plasma Machine from KAAST Machine Tools. Brandon explains, “the CNC (computer numerically controlled) plasma machine processes high volumes of material up to 1.5 inches thick (plasma) and 8 inches thick (torch) and measuring 80 inches by 156 inches with a tolerance of +/- 0.005 inches. By limiting material warping and achieving the most accurate cut, plasma cutting reduces the need for additional steps in the manufacturing process, such as grinding, flattening, and machining. Our plasma and torch machine cuts steel, stainless, and aluminum. Our 5-axis plasma head allows for tough cuts such as bevels and angles.”
Brandon is the main operator of “the plaz table,” as the team calls it. An active duty Marine Reservist, Brandon was trained on how to use the plasma cutter in just a few days. “It’s really not complicated if you have any base understanding [of metal working]. And the CNC allows you to do test runs, where the machine traces your cuts first to ensure the commands you enter will give you the output you are looking for.” With the price of steel and other metals only going up these days, small shops like M.E.R. have little room for waste. “The machine allows us to get as many pieces as is mathematically possible out of every sheet of metal, which gets us every dollar possible as well.”
M.E.R. runs the Plasmasonic daily, working on everything from one-piece prototypes to large quantity piece work. Custom blueprint or spec fabrication, they can accommodate most needs. They also offer design assistance.
As Joe puts it, “Metal fabrication is one of the first and most important manufacturing steps in creating a finished part. M.E.R. Industrial uses a variety of processes to manipulate steel plates and sheet metal, providing you with a turnkey solution to all of your industrial fabrication requirements. We use leading-edge metal fabrication equipment to cut a wide range of material thicknesses. Our metal and steel fabrication services are carefully designed to provide you with a seamless transition from one process to the next. You’re able to choose from simple cut sheet metal and plate shapes, ready-to-assemble kits, or complex assemblies.”
M.E.R. is quickly out-growing their current shop space with the addition of the KAAST machines. “The biggest thing holding us back, in my opinion,” Brandon says, “is space. We just need more space to be able to keep up with the jobs we’re getting.” The company is keeping its eyes open for something “just right,” but that can be hard to find in today’s industrial real estate market. KAAST Machine Tools is proud to see our machines helping Joe, Jean, and their sons manufacture a better tomorrow for their family.