Movin’ on Hupp

Electric motor dynasty moves to newer, bigger facility

Hupp Electric Motors

“Keeping Industry Running Efficiently” is the Hupp Electric Motors motto.

Things have gotten smaller over the last 100 years. Electronics, mainly (computers, phones, cameras), but also cars, food portions, even jeans— everything has been downsized for convenience and comfort. For the most part.

In manufacturing, however…bigger is still, often, better. So if you’re Kevin Hupp, the fifth generation of ownership in a family owned dynasty of electric motor repair, you’ve been waiting for the opportunity to seize an upgrade in size and space.

“Out of room” and “everything is going to be bigger” are the standout footprints of this necessity for expansion. Hupp used such explanations in a recent interview with The Gazette, a Cedar Rapids daily newspaper.

Hupp Electric Motors has always been in Cedar Rapids, Iowa— since 1912. That’s right- these guys have been a mechanical authority since the Taft Administration. Electric motor repair is the axis on which the company has swiveled for a majority of its lifespan- but it isn’t the only area of expertise. Hupp started as primarily an elevator and wiring shop back around its birth, during William Hupp’s founding era. And it experienced a period of revival during the early 1980s (Bob Hupp’s reign) when it added crane and hoist specializations to its resume. With every turnover in ownership, the business has stayed in the family but strayed from limitations. Expansion in services has continually helped its progression.

The catalog now includes Millwright Services, which assists shorthanded companies by providing technicians repairs; Engineered Products, an umbrella that includes the company’s own design and service of control panels, drives, medium voltage ADS’s, and a range of panel shop and power systems services; Power Plus, a reserve system that helps provide spare replacement motors and parts in the event of a critical breakdown; and Machining Services, a list of machines so extensive it’s certainly worth a link– sorry, look.

The new 110,000 square-foot Hupp facility, which is expected to be up and running by April 2016, was launched by the city of Marion and Marion Economic Development Company, or MEDCO as a center to attract companies in need of large pieces of land. It consists of 184 acres at the corner of Highways 151 and 13. Marion is a satellite city of Cedar Rapids with a population just over 36,000.

Kevin Hupp said he hopes the larger facility will allow the company to extend its reach in motor repair and sales, engineering, machining and preventive maintenance. This includes equipment removal and installation, pump repair, gearbox repair, fan and shaft repair, bearing and seal replacement, metal fabrication and welding, mounting base modifications, and balancing/laser alignment. The company has a stockpile of responsibilities and clients that warrant more space.

He also cited the related height constraints as a major incentive for the move- something evidenced on Monday when the company began moving some of their largest machinery to the new location.

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