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Valentine’s Day Giving

No matter your feelings for February 14th, most everyone can agree they love receiving a sweet Valentine’s Day card. This year, in addition to sharing the love with family and friends, why not make some Valentine’s Cards for kids in the hospital ?

In honor of the big day, children’s hospitals all over the country are holding Valentine Drives where anyone can send a free digital valentine to a patient. Each hospital has their own designs- many of which are designed by patients- and are such an easy way to brighten up a patient’s day!

So take a moment and visit one of the websites below and make a child’s Valentines Day more special!

OMS: What We’re Made Of #LetsBuildThings

Strategic Manufacturing Support

  • Project Management that Delivers Beyond Capacity & Capability- At O’Neal Manufacturing Services (OMS) you will have a supply chain partner working to strategically reduce your company’s total manufacturing costs and deliver high-quality products when scheduled. Some of our services include: a process-driven manufacturing culture, reinvestment in technologically-advanced equipment, and Advanced Product Quality Planning (APQP).


  • Support-Focused Manufacturing as an Extension of Your Business: OMS has earned our reputation as a leading manufacturer of fabricated metal components and welded sub-assemblies by contributing to our customers’ product and supply chain requirements. Our industry expertise and automated manufacturing processes allows us to fabricate high quality components and products efficiently, saving costs and ensuring timely delivery. Our project management capabilities include: engineering assistance on new product development, management and tracking of our production process, as well as reporting and communication to ensure our clients that OMS is fully integrated into their supply chain management process.


  • Strategic Risk Management: Disruptions in the supply chain can affect your sleep schedule, and worse yet, bring your production to a halt. OMS offers strong continuity plans to mitigate risks and eliminate supply chain disruptions. With multiple strategically- located, North American manufacturing plants, quality production are supported through manufacturing redundancy. By developing business continuity plans that support value-added collaboration and sustainability in the supply relationship, OMS brings significant value to strategic sourcing and procurement throughout the part life cycle.
To learn more about what OMS is capable of please visit:



YEP Lights Partners with OMS in Cedar Falls, Iowa

Cedar Falls, Iowa. (December 17, 2018) Roger Blakesley is the owner and operator of Yard Engineered Products in Iowa and when the economy crashed he came up with the idea of producing an outdoor lighting product for homeowners that would reflect their own interests and aesthetics.  The main goal was to take his daughters artwork, wrap the designs around a strong tube that is laser cut so that the image shines through in the evening.

Sourced Locally:

Yep Lights went with a metal processor close to home to take on it’s new product. It just so happened that Roger Blakesley has worked at O’Neal Manufacturing Services (OMS) for 28 years. OMS who is a supplier of fabricated components and welded assemblies runs an industrial- scale laser cutting operation in Cedar Falls. Describing the process Blakesley states, “OMS takes our artwork and puts it into a usable format and program so it can be produced on their tube laser.” Along with that, the top of the tube is cut to accept the solar light and the bottom of the tube is cut to create steaks. Yep Lights does production runs at OMS every couple of months.

The Process: 

In producing a new design, “we bring in a hand drawn picture of the artwork we want.” Everything goes through the OMS sales department. The drawing goes to the engineering department, and an engineer looks over the artwork. Sean Alexander, Account Manager at OMS handles the Yep Lights account. He sums up the production process by saying, “on a new design, they will give us the artwork and we digitize that into CAD models, view it electronically and program it, then quote total cut time for the material.” Sean also manages any repeat orders, and conducts price reviews as they move through material pricing, and produce new quotes as designs change. He adds that, “Yep Lights purchase the raw material through us, too. Our supply chain team takes care of all those orders.”


For more about this article and how OMS helped Roger Blakesley achieve his dream, visit:


Facility Spotlight: OMS Pittsburgh

Check out this week’s “Facility Spotlight” on our Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania plant! This facility first opened in 1993 as a part of O’Neal Steel and separated from ONS in 2011, becoming an O’Neal Manufacturing Services plant.

General Manager, Gus Cassida, has been working for our company for 22 years now. When asked what makes Pittsburgh unique, he states that the facility handles big machining and forming by formulating a strategic approach to attacking large, difficult parts.

As our most eastern location, Pittsburgh specializes in many industries including mobile cranes, aerial work platforms, rail car, and bridge. Cassida shared that Pittsburgh excels in maintaining continuity with sales while also making smart decisions for the company.


Facility Spotlight: OMS Indianapolis

We are continuing with our “Facility Spotlights” today, focusing on our Indianapolis, Indiana facility!

Federico Fraga, General Manager for O’Neal Manufacturing Services (OMS) in Indianapolis, IN, has been working with OMS for 14 years. He shared that OMS Indianapolis’ top priorities are safety, quality, and delivery. This facility specializes in many industries including Energy, Elevators, Construction, and Agriculture. Federico expressed that one of Indy’s strengths is having a very diverse workforce, from tenured employees with 40 + years of experience to new employees that bring fresh ideas to the team. This has allowed the facility to become a learning organization that values team work, continuous improvement and employee participation as cornerstone of our culture.

Brent Wilson, OMS Sales Manager, is in his 4th month with the company. Just in the few short month’s Brent instantly picked up on the passion from Indy’s employees, very appreciated by the customers. OMS Indianapolis takes pride in connecting with customers, so much so that people have started recommending OMS services to other customers in need.

When asked where the future of Indianapolis is going, Federico believes that we will achieve “world-class operation excellence” that will allow continuous growth with current and new customers.


Facility Spotlight: OMS Louisville

Stay up-to-date on our Louisville plant with this week’s “Facility Spotlight.”

While some of our other facilities may specialize in select industries, Louisville serves a variety including material handling, aerial lift, heavy rail, heat transfer, and ancillary rail.

Kevin Hauntz, OMS Sales Manager of 30 years, shared many highlights regarding our Louisville facility. He began by stating “Diversification is our niche,” meaning that the facility excels in many different areas.

When asked what makes Louisville unique, Hauntz shares that this facility has an “extremely experienced workforce,” with many tenured employees, all with above average knowledge when dealing with complex metal fabrication. He also stressed that Louisville really “runs the gamut by design.”

Set in the largest city in Kentucky, our Louisville plant has been located in a 125,000-square foot facility since around the 1980s. 


Facility Spotlight: OMS Houston

We are excited to share another “Facility Spotlight” post on our Houston, Texas facility.

George Torres, OMS Account Manager, went into detail of milestones Houston has experienced in the past few months. Since Torres joined the OMS team two years ago, our Houston facility has transitioned from the original location, which opened back in 1988, to a new plant that they moved into February 2018 . He shared many benefits regarding the move, stating that “The new warehouse is laid out more efficiently, causing workflow and moral to improve as a result.”

Additionally, Houston is currently implementing a paint booth. By adding a paint booth, Houston has been able to pursue new business and pick up new accounts. Weldments that require painting can now be done in house and will no longer have to be done separately.

When asked what makes Houston unique, Eric Simpson, OMS Sales Manager, states that “Houston is right in the center of a huge amount of energy, rail, heavy equipment, and general fabrication manufacturers and contractors.” Simpson believes Houston’s greatest strength is “working out exceptionally cost-effective solutions for customer needs” not only in Texas, but in surrounding states as well.

Stay up-to-date on our other five facilities in the upcoming weeks as we share more “Facility Spotlight” posts.


Facility Spotlight: Iowa Laser

Get to know our locations with our “Facility Spotlights” — Cedar Falls, Iowa is the home of Iowa Laser Technology, an O’Neal Manufacturing Services acquired company as of 2012. 

Chad Meyerhoff, Iowa Laser’s Sales Manager, has worked for the company for 24 years now. He shares that Iowa Laser’s laser cutting capabilities is what separates the company from OMS’s other six facilities. While other facilities within O’Neal Manufacturing Services may specialize in a thicker sheet plate, Iowa Laser specializes in 11 gage-¾ inch sheet thickness.

Meyerhoff states that Iowa Laser was founded in 1978 and began when laser technology was first starting. The company continued to grow as technology evolved, and people of the Iowa community began to view Iowa Laser as their “laser cutting go-to.”

During the transition from being privately-held to becoming apart of OMS facilities in 2012, Meyerhoff believes the most important thing was the help from the OMS corporate staff to understand the system and what was expected of the company. Through OMS, Iowa Laser has reached a “wider customer base,” one of the positive aspects he believes stems from OMS acquiring Iowa Laser.

Check out our page next week for the “Facility Spotlight” on our Houston, Texas location. #LetsBuildThings

4 Tips for Fire Prevention in Manufacturing

It’s easy to get complacent about the sparks that fly around a manufacturing workplace. With things like welding happening all around us, sometimes we forget that sparks are a real safety hazard – and they can ignite a fire if we’re not diligent about fire safety.

Read on for four tips to help your manufacturing workplace prevent fires.


Even if it’s just a small welding job, protective clothing is a must. Sparks can be caught in collars, cuffs, or pockets, which is why personal protective equipment (PPE) is so essential during the welding process. Not wearing the proper attire can result in a very serious accident, even if the job seems like a simple, low-risk operation.


Do you know how far sparks actually fly? The answer is about 35 feet – and they can stay hot enough to be a fire hazard, too. While it’s not usually possible to have that wide of a safe zone, it is possible to consider potential problems within that space, and make protective changes accordingly.


It takes sharp focus to weld, which means that welders can easily be unaware of combustible items nearby (think flooring, partitions, and walls). Welding must be performed away from gasses, chemicals, plastics, or other flammable materials – even heavy dust vapors can pose a hazard. Welders must be aware of everything within the danger zone and take precautionary measures before beginning the job.


Hot metal can tuck itself away in cracks or crevices around a welding area, causing major problems. It may not be possible to seal every crack in the building, but even taking care of some of the more obvious ones can really help to reduce the risk of a fire. Keep working fire extinguishers nearby and make sure your employees know how to use them


Safety is very important to us here at O’Neal, and we’re not willing to compromise when it comes to preventing fires on our manufacturing floor. That’s just one of the ways we strive to achieve the highest standard in the industry – and when you work with O’Neal, you’ll see just how far we rise above the competition. Learn more about us today.

Closing the Skills Gap

Manufacturing has come face-to-face with a skills gap as older workers retire and younger workers are few. There will be an estimated 3.5 million manufacturing jobs left vacant over the next 10 years, and as many as 2 million of those jobs could go permanently unfilled as retiring workers take decades of experience with them.

How can we solve this problem and close the skills gap? Read on to find out.


One of the reasons behind America’s skills gap is the lack of funding for proper training programs. This issue has prevented students across the country from accessing the education they need to succeed in careers like manufacturing. Even though we desperately need young people to go into these fields, they don’t – and because there isn’t enough funding for trade skill programs from middle school through university, many students aren’t gravitating toward those lines of work.

The action step here is simple: students need to understand that trade skills are a viable alternative to the traditional undergraduate, graduate, office job career path. They may even find that skilled trades are more fulfilling work and offer more opportunities. But they’re not likely to understand these things unless trade education improves.


The second half of this equation is the stigma many people have regarding skilled trades. Often, people who work in utilities, manufacturing, or the like are seen as “unsuccessful” – but this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Not only do skilled trades offer a large amount of job security, they also provide opportunities for career advancement. Many people who work in fields like manufacturing report high levels of satisfaction in their work, citing good pay, good benefits, and a feeling of fulfillment. The issue, though, is that careers like medicine and law are still seen as more successful – and until that changes, the skills gap will likely remain a problem for our country.


Here at O’Neal, we know firsthand the positive effect a thriving manufacturing industry can have on a city. We believe wholeheartedly in what we do, and we’re looking for that next generation to take O’Neal another hundred years into the future. Interested in learning more about who we are and what we do? Find out more about us today.