Jeremy Kliewer came out of the service and found employment at Metal Products in McMinnville. Over a period of years, he learned the fabricating business inside and out. He subsequently started MtlWrx at 274 Smartt Station Road in Morrison, a 7,500-square-foot plant, in 2010.
The recent big news for MtlWrx was the 2021 purchase of the 27,000-square-foot ex-Cooper Manufacturing plant right behind it. While this offers many advantages going forward, the Cooper plant required extensive renovation – electrical, water, etc. That renovation is not over, but has allowed moving part of their operation into the larger plant.
What is MtlWrx? It is a high-end contract manufacturer and/or “job shop” which makes components on an OEM (original equipment manufacturer) basis for several other manufacturers. Jeremy got into the medical components market during the pandemic years, and it now is 40% of his total business.
The field for MtlWrx is the machining or fabrication of metal. MtlWrx can approach most metalworking or metalforming applications in-house with its broad range of equipment. Metals most commonly dealt with include aluminum, stainless steel, and all kinds of steel.
Current headcount at MtlWrx is 28, up from 10 one year ago. Jeremy expects a workforce of 40 to 50 one year from now. The company has 10 CNC machines currently with nine operators running two shifts five days a week.
Saturday is set aside as an overtime day as needed. Operating hours are from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. They have two horizontal machining centers and seven vertical machining centers. They have one CNC lathe. They have Haas CNC controls and Fanuc CNC controls.
Their headcount growth is a combination of more business and moving into the Cooper plant – more space. The company invites interested candidates to work there to come on-site for an interview and fill out an employment application. Jeremy reports that existing employees have aided recruiting greatly for the company. The company looks for three skill sets – being teachable, being team-oriented, and getting along with others.
Why should someone want to work there? MtlWrx features a small family atmosphere where team building is engrained into their operations. MtlWrx offers good benefits and employee flexibility.
About 70% of MtlWrx business is within Warren County. Important OEM customers include Accu-Router, Morrison Industries, and Wilson Cutting Systems. All three of these customers are busy, which favors MtlWrx.
MtlWrx utilizes a unique card tracking system to document and closely monitor work-in-process flow across its plants. This allows accuracy with delivery advisories to customers. They advocate being honest with their customers. Customer service is their calling card.
They will carry finished inventory for existing customers with repeat needs. Their average lead time is three to four weeks. They have endured supply chain challenges, especially with raw materials. Now, let’s look at the capabilities list for the company.
• Vertical machining
• Horizontal machining
• Turning/ lathe machining
• 3, 4, and 5 axis machining
• 3D Contouring
• Wireless Probing for faster setups and to maintain tool accuracy
• CNC Laser Cutting
• CNC Press Brake
• Pem Machine
• CNC Plasma Cut
• MIG, TIG, and Stick Welding
• CNC Part Etching of part numbers/identification
• Powder Paint
• TCP-HF (Replaces Yellow Alodine)
• Milled finish
• Blasted Media
• Heat Treat
• Wet Paint
• Solid Works
• Solid Edge
• Fusion 360
• Degreed Mechanical Engineering
• 8 RMS and higher
CNC Horizontal Saw
• CNC Auto Feed
• Saw up to 12” in diameter
• CMM Inspection
• Statistical process control charts used
• QMS complies with ISO9001 and AS9100
This is a most comprehensive list of capabilities across metalworking and metalforming. Jeremy collaborated with Metal Products while they were in operation. Once they elected to close, MtlWrx did purchase a lot of their equipment and processes.
Mtlwrx was one of eight industry partners with the successful TCAT $1 million GIVE Grant of three years ago to build a Machine Shop Technology program as a dual enrollment course at Warren County High School. WCHS now has the finest program of its type in the state of Tennessee.
Jeremy has hired seven graduates of TCAT from the Welding Program and Machine Shop Technology. The company banner flies at the WCHS classroom for Machine Shop Technology.
It is exciting for BRAC to recognize a homegrown success story. To witness a local firm which doubled in size during the pandemic is a tribute to Jeremy Kliewer and his MtlWrx team. We wish for much success in the future.