Rocky Mountain Tooling & Machining Association (RMTMA) is a local chapter of National Tooling and Machining Association (NTMA)
We represent the precision custom manufacturing industry. Our membership is comprised of companies both large and small. Nationally (NTMA) has over 1,300 member companies, representing over $30 billion in revenues. We believe the important role manufacturing plays in our local and national economy. To our members we can provide education and training, networking, business and health insurance, market research, business development and advocacy.
Come check us out!
Our mission is to help members of the U.S. precision custom manufacturing industry achieve profitable growth and business success in a global economy through advocacy, education, networking, information, programs and services.
We are very proud of our member companies. Their services and capabilities serve as the manufacturing bedrock for the production of American manufactured goods. Our local and national member companies provide products vital to our economy, and meaningful well paid employment to thousands of employees and their families. We salute their commitment and entrepreneurial spirit. One of the ways RMTMA says thank you to our members is featuring a different member company every month. This month's our featured member company is:
Denver Precision Products
Denver Precision Products focus on service and investment, are keys to moving their business forward. Claude F. Knuepfer president and his children continue a contract manufacturing family tradition. Claude moved to Colorado from Chicago in 1978 , to join his father's business. Now Claude’s son Jacob, who manages the manufacturing floor and daughter Amy Primrose, responsible for the office and sales are the 4th generation of family involved in the business.
The machining pedigree of the Knuepfer family runs deep. In1922, Claude’s grandfather opened his own screw machine company in Chicago. Claude's grandfather was also a founding member of PMPA (Precision Machined Parts Association), one of the oldest manufacturing trade associations in the country.
The core of their contract machining business, since moving from Chicago to Colorado in 1971, has been producing small diameter turned/milled parts (.100” to 1.65”) Originally, they produced large quantities of turned parts on cam type Browne & Sharp turning machines. When milling was required on the parts, they were then moved to secondary milling machines.
In the 1980-90’s Denver Precision transitioned much of their work from the cam machines to CNC swiss (sliding headstock) machines, with milling capabilities. This move to more advanced technology, enabled them to combine much of the turning and milling into a single setup, better tolerance control, improved finishes, and decreased cycle times.
Recently they purchased three new Tsugami CNC swiss machines giving them 32 mm diameter swiss capability and two new 42mm CNC Miyano (fixed headstock) turn/mills. With the addition of these new machines, they now produce much of their legacy work on these multi-axis machines.
In addition to their commitment to capital investment, attention to personal customer service is a key to customer retention and longevity. “Good customer relations, being responsive to customer needs and problems are foundational to how we do business” says Amy Primrose, who handles much of the customer interface and sales.
Their customer base is primarily regional (rocky mountain area) by design. “Most of our existing customers are within a one-day drive of our business” explains Amy, “It gives us the ability to keep close to our customers and respond quickly to their needs. It’s our best sales tool.”
Denver Precision serves multiple markets: industrial, electronic, medical, energy, and recreational. They have existing customers that go back 40 years, a tribute to their manufacturing and servicing capabilities.
Because of the diversity of their customer base, they machine many different materials: plastics, stainless steel, aluminum, oil lite bronze, and monel.
“We also do lots of tight tolerance work. Some in the .0005” range, occasionally we will have something in the .0003” range. You are now crossing over into a grinding world” commented Claude. “We have a hydraulic part we have produced successfully for years, that requires a 3-6 RMS (mirror) internal finish”.
Another recent investment is an Oasis optical inspection system. “It’s a quick accurate method for checking external dimensions on small parts” says Knuepfer. "
Areas of concern – Workforce awareness. Amy, a former educator states, “educating people on the importance of manufacturing, most people, educators included, and their students don’t know that manufacturing exists.”
“We need to automate, especially in our deburring area” says Amy. “We also are looking at updating our ERP system”
Opportunities – “The economy is good. Our continued focus is on high value hydraulics. We do well with small intricate parts” states Claude.
The future for Denver Precision Products looks bright, please visit their website for more information.
Denver Precision Products
Established in Colorado – 1971
Current building - 5,000 sq. ft.
Location – Broomfield, CO
Employees - 10
Planting Seeds of Opportunity, Growing Skills of the Trade, and Harvesting Success
Spring is my favorite time of year! I always enjoy the early blooming plants and trees – the colorful new growth and fragrant aromas are a reward for the hard work invested in the prior seasons and helps to melt away the cold weather memories.
As precision manufacturers, we also need to plant the seeds of opportunity among our team members and grow their skills if we hope to harvest from their labors.
As members of NTMA’s Rocky Mountain Chapter, there are a number of options available to amp-up the skills of our team members. One option is to enroll them in NTMA-U’s online training program. The RMTMA has purchased a “portal” which gives our member companies unlimited access to NTMA-U training courses. Here is a link to the NTMA-U Brochure showing all of the course offerings. And here is a link to a 4½ minute NTMA-U Video tutorial that demonstrates the ease of use.
To make training even more affordable, our chapter leadership implemented a new “unlimited” cost structure that’s based on the number of employees in your company. Under this new plan, your company can pay a small annual fee and receive unlimited training throughout the year. If you have already signed up for classes in 2018, we will apply what has been paid toward your annual fee.
One class module costs $25 per student (plus books)
Number of employees
Annual unlimited cost per company
0-10 $100.00 (does not include books)
11-25 $200.00 (does not include books)
26-75 $350.00 (does not include books)
76 or more $500.00 (does not include books)
Another option for developing your team’s skills or for hiring new talent is to utilize our network of Community Colleges. We are very fortunate to have a number of trade schools and skilled educators right in our backyard and they are motivated to find a home for their students, and to find more students for their instructors to train. Here are contacts from three of our local schools:
Precision Machining Instructor
Warren Tech / Red Rocks Community College
Advanced Manufacturing Program Coordinator
Front Range Community College
2120 Miller Drive
Longmont, CO 80516
Machining Department Chair
Community College of Denver
2570 31st St.
Denver, CO 80216
Ready. Set. Grow!
President, Rocky Mountain Chapter – NTMA
President, Hirsh Precision Products, Inc.