Bison Gear and Engineering, founded in 1960, was acquired by the father and son partnership of Norman and Ronald Bullock in 1987. As Chairman of Bison, Ron Bullock has opened the company to the global market, expanded Bison's overall product line, and established a Research and Development Center. Since the Bullock's acquisition of the company, Bison's sales volume has more than quadrupled.
Bison supplies power transmission equipment to the global marketplace. Our established production capacity is in excess of 500,000 units annually and our products are used in all 7 continents. Our customers depend on the reliability and durability of our products in demanding applications.
As a dynamic and innovative company, Bison recognizes the importance of listening and responding to our customer's needs. We are committed to achieving Total Customer Satisfaction. Our Annual Quality Plan describes our efforts to achieve this goal.
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Bison Gear and Engineering of St. Charles, Illinois has enhanced its marketing leadership with the consolidation of the Bison Electric Company formerly located in Elgin, Illinois.
With this relocation and consolidation into the St. Charles facility in 2002, it has shortened lead-times to our customers while eliminating waste with excess material handling with our manufacturing process. With this acquisition, we were able to retain the expertise and experience of the motor division employees.
The Total Quality Management (TQM) program evolved in 1999 to a Lean Manufacturing strategy using the tools of Lean such as 5-S, Kaizen Blitzes, Kanban, and Single Minute Exchange Of Dies (SMED) as the primary means of improvement. Initially, Bison engaged in the training of its associates in Lean Methodologies and then moved it into motion within the manufacturing facility. Bison utilized this knowledge to evaluate the work processes to convert the manufacturing processes where components were made in batches, into one-piece-flow cellular manufacturing. In addition inventory and production scheduling began to be converted from a Material Requirements Planning (MRP) system into Kanban arrangements.
Value Stream Maps have been used as an important tool to identify any activities that do not add value to the process (value as determined by the customer). Dozens of Kaizen events were then eliminating waste throughout the entire value stream that has resulted in providing products with shorter lead times and fewer defects using less human effort, inventory, and costs.
Bison Gear and Engineering became ISO 9001:2008 certified in 2010. Since then, Bison has developed beneficial lean manufacturing principals to eliminate lost time and scrap and ensure we continue to provide the best quality components and products to our customers. In 2018 Bison updated to ISO 9001:2015 certification.
In 2012, Bison launched its first in a series of new, hypoid gearmotors, the PowerSTAR. Offered in a right-angle orientation, the PowerSTAR gearmotor uses proprietary hypoid gearing manufactured exclusively here at Bison to provide maximum efficiency in a compact profile. The PowerSTAR™ also features ground gearing for whisper-quiet operation and interchangeable mounting configurations for application versatility.
Bison has carried a variety of IP69 stainless steel washdown gearmotors, motors and reducers since 2010. Designed to operate in equipment that is exposed to temperature extremes, constantly wet environments and harsh cleaning agents, Bison's parallel shaft SaniMOTOR and IHP washdown motors and reducers provide reliable performance in the harshest conditions.
Added to the Bison product line in 2015, our Integral Horsepower Reducers provide more power from 1/4 to 5 horsepower. IHP reducers are configurable to the customer needs and are available in both worm and high efficiency hypoid gearing with versatile mounting options. The IHP line is perfect for industrial machinery, conveying and larger format applications.
The latest innovation from Bison Gear & Engineering was introduced in 2019. VFsync Permanent Magnet Synchronous AC Motors were designed with high-tech automated machines in mind. VFsync motors deliver the velocity control that engineers have previously only found in much more expensive servo motors. The Leadership in Engineering Achievement Program (LEAP) Awards are hosted annually and recognize the best new product innovation across 12 different product categories. In October 2020, Bison's VFsync motors were awarded the bronze medal in the mechanical category beating dozens of entrants.