Thursday, February 7

Harken Factory Tour

Crowley's riggers at Harken's new factory in Wisconsin. The team was there for training on the latest products from Harken and were treated to a tour of the new factory with the Harken brothers. From left to right: Tim Hill, Olaf Harken, Laura Thompson, Peter Harken, and Al Montesinos. 

Laura sent the following letter out to the rest of the boat yard:

Hello all.

We, the riggers, just wanted to give you all a little summary of our three days at Harken University.

We all were familiar with Harken products beforehand. They are on probably half the sailboats in the yard... But now as I walk around the boats, I can tell you exactly what the name of that block is, the size, the best use for it, and whether or not is belongs on that boat. (I'm thinking of you, Adios with T2 57 loop blocks...)

We covered everything from the basic blocks and travelers to winches and hydraulics. And ball bearings. I have dreams about ball bearings now...
We even got to spec out the fittings for new boats as a final exam. I can tell you how to outfit a brand new GP 52... without a budget, of course.

We also got a tour of the new factory. It was a monument to efficiency and organization. Raw material comes in one door and finished product leaves through the opposite door. They had laid out the plans for this building at least a year in advance. And I don't just mean the walls. I mean where all the machines would go and which processes needed to be next to each other. They even placed all the support staff offices directly over their related shop floor departments. 

It was 3 days of heavy classwork, raucous parties, and lots of snow. We are all very grateful that you gave us the opportunity to do this. So here's a picture of us with the brothers Harken.


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