[ facilities ]
Strong Enterprises facilities consist of a 20,000 square foot concrete building with four loading/shipping docks and 2,000 square feet of administrative and engineering space. Currently Strong Enterprises operates one production shift. Manufacturing space is divided into three departments – round canopy production, ram-air/square production, and harness/container production. Each department has a full complement of sewing machines specific to its products, including many programmable automatic sewing machines.
Receiving Inspection Department
This department inspects, sorts and stocks all raw materials, webbing, tapes, fabric, lines, and hardware. Everything that comes through the door is pre-inspected before it is ever inducted into our production line. The canopy goes through another inspection before lines are attached. Lines go through a separate inspection after being cut, looped and sewn. All inspections are documented through final inspection after which the canopies are packed or shipped to the customer.
Inspectors are FAA parachute riggers and most of them have a skydiving background. In-process inspections are made on all major components as they go through the manufacturing process within each department. This greatly reduces the possibility of rejected parts while going through the stitching and assembly process. There is a Final Inspection area for each department that has all documentation, jigs and final inspection sheets for each item built in that department. All major items are date stamped, serial numbered and stamped with the Inspectors personal numbered stamp.
Double needle machines with attachments specifically for installing binding tape to containers. Most of the single needle sewing machines are “medium duty” to handle tough container fabric and webbing. Four harness machines of the 7-Class variety handle thick webbing configurations. There are also five automatic machines capable of handling multiple layers of fabric or webbing with an automatic WW or 4-point stitch pattern.
Square/Ram-Air Canopy Department
With over 25 Double needle machines and the largest floor space this department is able to handle ram-air canopies in a large variety of production sizes from 12 to 1,800 square feet. A separate cutting table is used for cutting lines which uses a special technique of looping and stitching the line ends while the lines are at the table, greatly cutting down on labor assembly time. All of the canopy fabric is cut with a computer controlled cutting table to assure precise cutting according to digital patterns.
Round Canopy Department
More than 20 Double-needle 1/2” and 3/8” gauge machines specifically for assembling and taping round canopies. There are six zigzag machines (308 stitch) that are for suspension lines and reinforcing specific areas on canopies. Precision line cutting can be done on two different tables. Each table allows lines to be tensioned as a group to stabilize the lines before cutting. All the sewing machines are nested into tables that allow an easy flow of material with a minimum of handling.
We excel because ...
... we are more than just a sewing or riggers' shop:
we design, test and fabricate parachutes as complete systems – and we do it all under one roof.