Northern Machinery’s new 58” magnet is matched to their Kobelco machine providing them with increased productivity for projects like this.



Alliance, Ohio - You have to work extra fast when the worksite is a bridge. Bridges tend to be important traffic routes and they offer no room to spare for equipment or temporary lanes. Efficiency is essential to get traffic back to normal with as little disruption as possible.

Special conditions like this create opportunities for specialists like Barry Wood, owner of Northern Machinery Service in Uxbridge, Ontario. For 25 years, Barry has been subcontracting the demolition work on bridges and other steel structures throughout southern Ontario. Part of Barry’s secret to success is the ability to move in and do his job quickly to keep reconstruction moving ahead. Barry’s personal experience in the business is vital to his performance on the worksite, knowing the best ways to approach the job safely and efficiently. Recently, however, he picked up his pace even further simply by acquiring a new lifting magnet from Winkle Industries.

Operating since the 1980s, Barry says he “…just fell into something I love doing and kept on doing it!” He has worked on the replacement or removal of hundreds of overpasses and small bridges in the region as well as major projects such as removing the road deck of the Bluewater Bridge in Sarnia.

His primary tool for bridge demolition is a Kobelco SK400LC excavator. He fits a large shear attachment onto the Kobelco to dismantle the steel structure and cut up the rebar embedded in the concrete roadbeds. Then the shear comes off and he replaces it with a 58” lifting magnet, similar to the magnets used to move steel scrap in recycling yards. Unlike recyclers, though, Barry mounts the magnet directly onto the Kobelco’s stick, not suspended from chains. This lets him turn the magnet up on edge and draw it through the demolition debris, like a bucket, to separate the rebar from the concrete.

This past year, Barry was in the market for a new magnet, hoping to find a way to speed up the loading time for his trucks that haul away the scrap rebar. He knew the maximum size for a lifting magnet is limited by the weight and design of the machine that’s using it, but then Barry read about Winkle magnets in a magazine article. The article explained how the Engineering Department at Winkle Industries was using computer-modeling techniques to design magnets that would lift more and last longer than other magnets of equivalent size. "They sounded like they were pretty sure of their magnet" he remembers, “so I thought I'd like to try one!”

Barry called Winkle, in Ohio, and a short time later, he was notified by Canada Customs that his new magnet was at the border, ready to be cleared. “Winkle was very easy to deal with,” he claims, “especially not having done business with me before."

He soon found that the Winkle magnet did perform as advertised. “It's a nice clean magnet, no problems. After I tried it, I called Winkle and asked them when they would like me to pay for it. I also told them that it was doing the job." According to Lee Stuchel, the Winkle service rep who took Barry’s call, the new 58" Winkle magnet compares in strength to other 60" or 62" magnets. Its size and weight suit the design envelope of the Kobelco 400 series machines, but Winkle improves its performance by optimizing its aluminum coil and its ability to dissipate heat through the magnet’s casing. The integrity of the coil and the heat generated over repeated duty cycles are key factors in the lifting capacity of any electromagnet.

On the job site, the Winkle magnet delivered what Barry was looking for. It’s noticeably stronger than his previous magnet, providing the Kobelco with more capability to extract and move the material faster. It takes less time to load the trucks, so the job gets finished more efficiently.

Winkle says the company’s commitment to customers is to develop products that are “engineered for end-to-end productivity.” By letting Barry Wood move more rebar faster, Winkle really has “Raised the Bar” for productivity at Northern Machinery Service!

About Winkle Industries

Winkle Industries is a worldwide leader in engineered solutions for users of mill-duty material handling equipment. Capabilities include below-the-hook lifting devices, mill equipment, crane products, engineering services, aftermarket services, machining and fabrication. Winkle’s experience and resources is “raising customer expectations” on a wide range of needs, from innovative product design to customer process improvement. 

2080 West Main Street, Alliance, Ohio 44601
Tel: (330) 823-9730 Fax: (330) 823-9788

[back to media room]

For more information on Winkle Industries and their complete portfolio of products and services, contact:

Mark Volansky
Director of Sales

Winkle Industries

2080 West Main Street
Alliance, Ohio 44601
Ph: (330) 823-9730
Fax: (330) 823-9788
Email: Visit the web site at: