KALIDA — Kalida Truck Equipment is building a new service and parts building to accommodate its business that has tripled production.
Construction on a new 18,000-square-foot building at 515 S. Broad St. in Kalida began in August and will be completed in March, according to Joe Recker, Kalida Truck Equipment co-owner. Recker co-owns the business with his brother Greg and cousin Ken Kahle. Unverferth Construction, Kalida, is the contractor for the project
The original business was founded in 1975 by previous owner Jim Burgei and the Reckers and Kahle purchased the business in 2001.
“We are a truck distributor where we upfit commercial trucks. A lot of times a truck will come to us as a bare cab and chassis and we will do the finish work on it,” Recker said.
The business owners have been discussing with one another for the last three years the possibility to build a new building.
“From when we bought the business in 2001, we have tripled our sales and output and we are just completely out of space,” Recker said.
The business started in a two-bay area with the owner, his wife and a salesman and two servicemen.
Kalida Truck Equipment now has two facilities in Kalida and Walbridge, Ohio, and are up to 43 employees.
The existing building is 7,600 square feet.
“Most of the area will be dedicated to our technicians who are doing our installs of dump bodies, service bodies and salt spreaders,” Recker said.
The new building will provide more space for employees to work and have a fabrication area where an iron worker, saw and drill presses will be located.
The current facility has seven bays and the new building will allow for 14 bays.
“We will double the size of our parts department and have an overhead crane that goes 225 feet from end to end to help us install our heavy equipment,” Recker said.
Currently the work is required to be done outside with two fork lifts.
“We figure the new building will help us between 5 and 7 percent in efficiency on our productivity,” Recker said. He added that the new building will provide more efficient lighting and a safer work environment.
Employees are trying to work and the area is cramped when doing work such as cutting steel and getting it to the truck they are working on, according to Recker.