Insight into the Malco Innovation Process
Often described as America’s greatest inventor, Thomas A. Edison once said, “There’s a way to do it better – find it.” We couldn’t agree more. Since 1950, Malco has continued our founder’s tradition of lasting quality and continuous innovation, always striving to exceed our customers’ expectations.
No one employee or team at Malco is responsible for contributing to new, innovative tools or updates to the existing product line. Employees work together to develop and manufacture the next best product launch. Keep reading to learn the inside scoop on our innovation process!
Methods for New/Updated Product Ideas:
- Sending personnel into the field to observe professionals working in the heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC), roofing, siding, and gutter (RSG), fence, deck, and rail (FDR), and automotive industries. Being on-site allows the field researchers to observe any issues with current products and opportunities for improving a process or need with new tools.
- Hosting a bi-monthly internal meeting with a group called the “Innovation Think Tank” to collaborate amongst each other to brainstorm ideas and provide feedback. You can think of this group as an extension of our research and development team.
- Inventors, distributors, and product users can submit their own innovative ideas for new products and updates on the Malco website. We would love to hear from you! Submit your idea to us by going to the “Have a Product Idea?” section at the bottom of our home page.
- At various industry tradeshows, users can provide feedback and new product ideas to the Malco representatives on site.
Numerous products have been developed or updated based on the methods mentioned above. See below for specific examples.
Innovative Tools to Try:
1. Conformable Sander
Created with the automotive professional in mind, quickly and easily sand precise auto-body contours with the Malco Conformable Sander! Unlike common, static sanding blocks, these innovative sanders are the first reusable, flexible sanding block that holds a hand-pressed contour throughout the entire sanding process. A unique, segmented block design quickly conforms to curved geometry down to an 8-1/2 inch (216 mm) inside block radius, to produce convex, concave, or S-curve contours.
An internal aluminum memory bar holds the desired contour shape in place, which can be set and re-set with reasonable hand force. Easily grasp the contours of the sanding block to reduce fatigue and ensure even-pressure sanding. The Conformable Sanders use standard 2-3/4 inch (70 mm) wide hook and loop backed abrasive paper. Both the engineered polymer block and slide are impervious to shop solvents and will not mar or scratch the auto-body surface.
2. TurboXTools™ Quarter Panel Hemming Drill Attachment
Sick and tired of using a hammer and dolly for your auto-body needs? Designed to replicate that pounding motion at high speed, with greater precision, less fatigue, and faster results, bend and close wheel arc flanges of replacement quarter panels with our TurboXTool Quarter Panel Hemming Attachment. Based on field trials, this innovative tool performs up to 80% faster than using a hammer and dolly! A rubber-cushioned anvil protects the quarter panel from scratches and scuffs. The rounded “bull-nose” hammer face should be used on the initial pass to quickly roll over the flange edge. Remove and turn the hammerhead around to use the flat-face side to then close and seal the flange in one easy pass. The anvil and working hammer are replaceable, easily installed, and may be cleaned of any adhesive residue by using a common solvent.
A telescoping clamp adjusts to attach it to a cordless drill or impact driver for one-handed operation. Optional spacers are stored on the clamp for large motor housings. The clamp collar allows the shear head to be rotated 360° and set in any position. The user can quickly hem replacement quarter panels with a range of wheel arc flange widths up to 3/4 inch (19.05 mm).
At Malco, we are always looking for feedback on how to make our products better. We take pride in our innovative process and hope to keep evolving to best serve our customers.