Safety and speed are hallmarks of Granite State Manufacturing's products
Glenn Lawton, president of Granite State Manufacturing, gives a demonstration of the ZeroG4, a device used to hold and work with heavy tools with little effort. At left is company CEO John Allard. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)
However, immediate plans call for Granite State Manufacturing to hire five or six workers - and perhaps add another half-dozen within a year as production shifts east from the West Coast.
Equipois makes equipment that allows a worker to place a heavy tool or a human arm into a movable, mechanical arm to relieve weight and increase productivity.
He said a few case studies showed companies can recoup their investment in zeroG4 in 18 months. Savings come from workers taking fewer breaks, suffering fewer injuries and performing their tasks more accurately, he said.
About 70 percent of GSM's overall sales come from supplying military equipment, either directy or as a subcontractor.
Sequestraction, forced budget cuts by the federal government trimming the rate of military spending, have affected the company's sales by 15 percent.
"Our customers are not saying forget it," Lawton said. "They're saying, put it on hold."
"They've designed these tools to be carried by a person," Lawton said. "I bet there's a grinder that's 75 pounds. If only somebody could pick it up, they could do a lot more grinding."
The helicopters carry a $30,000 list price.
The company hopes to win a contract with the U.S. State Department and is marketing them to police departments.
Recent orders were earmarked for the governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan, Lawton said.
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