Member Profile: Lyn-Tron Inc.
Lyn-Tron Inc. provides precision-engineered electronic and connector hardware to the computer and electronics industries, as well as custom-machined parts to a variety of markets. The family-owned company began operations in 1956 in Burbank, Calif., as Lynn Electronics Company and was incorporated under its current name the following year. The president, Donald E. Lynn, took over his father’s company in 1973.
In its early days, the company primarily produced solder terminals. As technology progressed, new products were developed to meet growing industry needs. Lyn-Tron began manufacturing connector hardware in 1982.
The company eventually outgrew its California facility, so the corporate offices and manufacturing operations relocated to Spokane, Wash., in 1993. Today, the manufacturer’s 70 employees produce products ranging from spacers, standoffs and screws to handles, chassis fasteners and captive panel retainers.
Lyn-Tron’s equipment includes 25 Davenport screw machines, 12 Brown and Sharpe screw machines and 12 Star Swiss-type CNC machines, as well as Hydromat and Eubama rotary transfer machines. The company produces small to medium-run quantities of parts ranging in sizes from 1/8 inch up to 1 1/4 inches in diameter.
“We’re a worldwide company,” says Dominic Borland, a 40-year machining veteran and vice president of manufacturing at Lyn-Tron. “Our electronics and computer components are shipped all over the world. But our custom work is primarily manufactured for the American market.”
That custom work came about over the last several years as Lyn-Tron diversified its product offering. Custom parts range from components for vending machines to the carabiners used to secure ropes in climbing applications.
“Quality and customer service are both very important to us,” Mr. Borland continues. “A lot of parts that went to China because of cost have since come back to this country because American manufacturers offer better quality.”
Lyn-Tron became a PMPA member in October 2010. “Right out of the gate, we signed up for the Listserves,” Mr. Borland says. “We use those in two ways: to see how others tackled a particular problem and to share our experience to help members solve their problems.
“We use all of the Listserves —quality, management, manufacturing—to see what the trends are and what’s going on,” Mr. Borland adds. “My job is manufacturing the parts, so I want to see what’s happening out there in manufacturing.
“It’s a very open format,” Mr. Borland says of the PMPA Listserves. “You can take just as much as you want. Usually the person that asked the question ends up signing off by saying ‘Thank you for all the replies. I’ve got enough right now.’ It’s amazing how many people have something to say about a particular issue. It’s good to see. We’ve gotten a lot out of it.”
Mr. Borland isn’t the only one at his company that uses the Listserves. “They are also used by our department supervisors,” he says. “One day, there might be something being said about a specific machine, such as a Davenport. The next day, there may a question about CNC. It’s good that the supervisors are able to see what’s going on and get involved with it.”
This past spring, Mr. Borland attended his first National Technical Conference as a PMPA member. “The Technical Conference was phenomenal,” he says. “I went to five different seminars. One was on metal; another on inspection. I wanted to see what needed to be done if I was running medical parts. It was invaluable to me. I couldn’t attend every seminar, but the ones I attended, I certainly got a lot out of.”
He was particularly impressed with the seminar on job evaluation. “Because we’re into custom work for different types of companies, we often do parts we’ve never done before. We open up a committee before a job comes in to determine if we should produce the part. We also evaluate the job afterward to determine if we quoted it right.
“When looking at a new custom job, you say, ‘We can run this; let’s see what the cycle time is going to be.’ Then you find out what the issues were after the fact. On jobs we’ve been running for 40 years, we’re pretty well locked in. But with the new ones, that’s where job evaluation comes in real handy.”
Mr. Borland says the main benefit of PMPA is the responses to the Listserves and learning what’s out there in terms of inspection, manufacturing and management information. “The Tech Conference also benefits us,” he adds. “I wish there were more conferences in the Pacific Northwest. It would be better for us if there were more action going on in our region. We have to get more people to join here.
“Being in PMPA less than a year, I probably haven’t even scratched the surface of what’s available to members,” Mr. Borland sums up. “But what I have seen so far, I like. It’s a great organization that really helps out manufacturing. And manufacturing can use all the help it can get.”
Lyn-Tron Inc. is located at 6001 S. Thomas Mallen Road, Spokane, Wash. 99224. Phone: 509-456-4545.Toll Free: 800-423-2734. Fax: 509-456-0946. Website: lyntron.com