Local family-owned machine company makes a business of making holes

Gary Zagar of Zagar Inc
Zagar Inc.

(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Gary Zagar, sales and marketing, Zagar Inc.)

The Zagar Inc. machine company was founded in 1937. Dedicated to the idea that everything needs holes, the Zagar gearless drill heads were manufactured during a robust period during the world wars and became a great product on the American market. The factory, located in Euclid, Ohio, right off of I-90, also makes work-holding fixtures, drilling and tapping machines, and custom machinery.

The location of the factory was chosen off of I-90 due to exposure to the highway back in the day, which is still a great place today. Always the forward thinker, Mr. Zagar saw hole-making equipment used in the constantly expanding fields of medicine, aerospace, automotive and military industries. Although these are main areas of business, many other entities have been served. The company has even drilled holes in hair picks for the tines during the 80’s hair craze.

The company’s customer base spans the globe and encompasses whatever needs a hole drilled in any type of surface and material. Currently, there are approximately 20 employees who work at Zagar, and the owners feel that one of the bigger challenges that the industry faces is employment. Qualified people to run and build machines are becoming a rarity, and the schools are not teaching the tradesmen and women like before. The concentration on going to college, IT and the medical fields has taken a bite out of the trades. The kids also have been exposed to video games and computers at an earlier age, which creates a generation of “indoors men” that is crippling many industries.

Industries Zagar Industries serves

However, Zagar is committed to continued success by reaching out to trade schools in the area, creating relationships with them and planting seeds in the heads of the kids to let them know that a manufacturing career is not a bad thing. The company also reached out to trade organizations and local chambers of commerce to help create positive relationships toward the success of the industry. As the industry drives toward a high-technology, advanced-manufacturing future, companies need to prepare for the need.

When not working at Zagar Inc., Gary Zagar, is an avid golfer and dad. It is all he has time for. He is inspired by positivity — looking forward to life and to good things, in general, instead of the constant reporting of negative and the plight of the world. He strives to be, and encourages others to be, the light of the world to inspire positive things in other people. He enjoys being outside during good weather and loves commerce and learning about everything. He says, “Life is so interesting, and I love it.”

 

HGR Industrial Surplus’ Thanksgiving 2018 hours

HGR Industrial Surplus Thanksgiving hours

Here are our holiday hours so that you can plan your visit or pickup. For the week of Thanksgiving, we will be open for normal business hours from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. We are closed on Thursday to observe Thanksgiving with our families. We will re-open for shorter Black Friday hours on Nov. 23 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. The following week, we resume our normal hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Enjoy celebrating your holiday and all the people and things for which you are grateful!

Get to Know HGR’s Ludie Toles

HGR's Ludie Toles
(l to r) Susan and Ludie

What is your job title?

I am a marketing administrator.

What are your job responsibilities on a day-to-day basis?

I call on manufacturing companies to talk to them about HGR buying their surplus equipment. If they have surplus, I then enter the information I gathered into our customer relationship management (CRM) system as a lead and set an appointment for the buyer to view the equipment and put in a bid if we are interested.

What qualifications are needed to succeed in your role?

It is a must to have good phone etiquette, as well as computer skills and great customer service skills. We have about 5 seconds to build a rapport with the receptionist or administrative assistant, which is so important as they hold the power as a gatekeeper to the people with whom we need to speak.

What background or prior work experiences do you bring to the table?

For the most part of 30 years of my life, I was in the “people” business. I worked in ministry and nonprofit organizations throughout the U.S., Mexico, Europe and Africa. The people skills I learned while working with many different cultures have been invaluable in my work life. I worked at a call center for two years before I came to HGR, which gave me the phone and computer skills I needed to slip right into my job.

How long have you been with HGR, and why?

It has been 2 1/2 years since joining the HGR team, and I absolutely love it! I was looking for a company with longevity and a moral compass and feel like I have found it.

What amazing things are you doing in your personal life?

One of my passions is landscaping, which I did on a professional level at one point. My wife, Susan, and I work year round on our yard with great satisfaction. I am also an avid “Rock Hound.” I go rock and crystal hunting, as well as collecting, cutting and polishing them. I have recently been elected to serve as a board member for the Austin Gem & Mineral Society which has been a 501(c)(3) for 60 years. I count it a great honor to be a part of this organization!

What can you tell us about your family?

Both of my parents are deceased, and I am the youngest of five children (and I’m old). My two sisters and two brothers live in Colorado, Montana and Texas. I have been blessed with a wonderful companion, and we have been together for 13 years. Susan has two grown daughters that we enjoy when we are able to get together. We also have two sweet Poodles that we love dearly — Tilly & Macy.

What is the most important thing in the world to you/what matters most?

My wife, Susan, is the greatest treasure that I have been blessed with. While I traveled for so many years, I had accepted I would be single for the rest of my life, which was fine in my line of work.  So, what a great gift when Susan walked into my life. I cherish every day with her and love when we are able to spend time with our family and friends who are like family.

HGR Industrial Surplus' Ludie Toles poodles

Euclid Chamber of Commerce Coffee Connections: Mount St. Joseph Rehab Center

Euclid Chamber of Commerce logo

SAVE THE DATE! Join the Euclid Chamber of Commerce at Mount St. Joseph Rehab Center, 21800 Chardon Rd., Euclid, Ohio, on Nov. 13 from 8:30-9:30 a.m. EST for coffee, a chat and a tour.

There is no cost to attend.  Membership is not required.

Please register here.

Get to Know HGR’s Gina Tabasso

HGR's Marketing Communications Specialist Gina Tabasso and her horse, Idyll

What is your job title?

Marketing communications specialist

What are your job responsibilities on a day-to-day basis?

Digital marketing and public relations, including community partnerships with the city, chamber of commerce, Euclid High School, AWT Robobots and others; weekly blogs; social media monitoring and sharing on Facebook and Twitter; quarterly newsletter; monthly column on manufacturing in two Observer newspapers; staff the LiveChat feature on our website; maintain the email and mailing contact lists; generate bi-weekly Amish inventory listing; participate in online industry forums; edit daily sales email; manage and respond to HGR’s email box; special events coordination, such as F*SHO, IngenuityFest or MAGNET’s State of Manufacturing; liaison with vendors and caterers; administer our annual STEM scholarship; seek content backlinks from other websites to ours; secretary for HGR’s values committee; marketing department onboarding for new employees; cover the front desk phones and customer check-ins, as needed; wash cookout dishes and put out donuts; and whatever else will support my team.

What qualifications are needed to succeed in your role?

Writing, editing, research, time management, deadline driven, organization, communication skills, being a positive ambassador, building relationships

What background or prior work experience do you bring to the table?

I consider myself a brand evangelist and content marketer who uses print, digital and event marketing to enhance my company’s reputation and position in the industry in order to drive traffic, build leads, and serve existing and new customers. I’ve managed internal and external communications and marketing for PNC, CWRU, Timken, J.M. Smucker Company, Dealer Tire, Penton Media, and Construction News Corporation, as well as taught college English, writing, communication and marketing classes. I’ve also learned a lot from mentors and organizations with which I have volunteered.

How long have you been with HGR, and why?

Three years, because it’s a family environment where customers and coworkers become friends; we all work together to get people what they need when they need it. I feel valued and respected, as well as enjoying what I do. Each day is different and interesting.

What amazing things are you doing in your personal life?

I write poetry, read lots of books, spend tons of time at the barn and in the park riding my horse. I collect books, perfume and, most recently, endless amounts of cute fairy garden stuff.

What can you tell us about your family?

I’m an only child and lost my dad three years ago. My nuclear family consists of my mom and my fur babies – Gwyn and Stas (cats) and Idyll (horse).

What is the most important thing in the world to you/what matters most?

Serenity, balance, personal peace, and health

Any words of wisdom to share?

I do a lovingkindness meditation every day and ask for safety, health, happiness, and ease and peace for myself and others.

American Eagle Antiques believes in unique, quality furnishings and excellent customer service

American Eagle Antiques wine rack

(Courtesy of Guest Bloggers Bill and Colleen Ulbrich, co-owners, American Eagle Antiques)

I started American Eagle Antiques in 1973 in my home state of New Jersey. Shopping local flea markets sparked an interest in antiques, particularly furniture. I was buying and selling for several years before I married Colleen, a native Clevelander and good friend from student days at Case Western Reserve University.

Bill and Colleen Ulbrich of American Eagle Antiques

Together, we spent about 30 years as antique furniture dealers — buying, repairing and refinishing, then selling traditional American Victorian and oak furniture, then expanding to French furniture, 1880s through Art Deco. We travelled to numerous events, from formal shows, like Chicago O’Hare, Papabello Cleveland Coliseum, NYC Pier Shows, to outdoor markets, like Brimfield, Mass., and Burton, Ohio. We logged thousands of miles each year, from New Jersey to Ohio to Minnesota, to D.C. to Atlanta.

About 10 years ago, we returned to Cleveland. Colleen worked for five years as a Cleveland Clinic medical secretary while I did full-time furniture restoration. Colleen “retired,” translated as returning to work with me, and we became intrigued by the repurposing of industrial salvage and discovered HGR!

Many hours are now spent together at our workshop located in an old factory building near Midtown, where we create one-of-a-kind furnishings from industrial salvage items, most acquired from HGR. We turn utility carts into brightly painted bar carts, machine stands into handsome end tables, lift tables and conveyor frames into distinctive bars or kitchen islands. We even began to incorporate local hardwoods into our repurposed pieces.

Most recently we’ve expanded to include live-edge furniture, constructed in our workshop for inventory and for custom orders. The emphasis is on dramatic grain using highly figured locally-sourced maple, walnut, oak, cherry and sycamore, to produce dining tables, desks, coffee tables, console and side tables, custom dry bars and kitchen islands. We continue to creatively use HGR salvage for one-of-a-kind furnishings for customers, who will treasure their unique “finds.”

Most of our training was on-the-job and self-taught training, including woodworking skills, repair and refinishing techniques, and above all, our teamwork! We now sell from our workshop/showroom, at markets and trade events, and have a division named UrbanFactoryClassics for selling industrial furnishings via Etsy.com and other online outlets.

We have many local customers but have shipped many major pieces to California, Utah, Florida, Texas, and around the U.S. thanks to Etsy. Our customers range from Millennials to middle-aged professionals and business owners to retirees.

Through 40-plus years, we have enjoyed the good times, coped with the tough times, changed and adapted, continue to learn, and still enjoy the challenge to be creative. We treasure each other and the wonderful people we meet, including the great folks at HGR!

American Eagle Antiques coffee tableAmerican Eagle Antiques live-edge coffee table American Eagle Antiques cart table