A Toast to Charles Strite!

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As you know, heat treating is near and dear to our hearts here at KHT. Everyday we strive to “make history” with our efficiency, consistency, performance and reliability, never taking for granted any one of our customers or customer’s jobs.

Well, nearly 100 years ago, a gentleman named Charles Strite also contributed to heat treating history, by patenting something we’ve come to rely on each morning – the pop-up toaster. (Filed for U.S. patent on May 29, 1919. Patent #1,394,450 was granted on October 18, 1921 for the pop-up bread toaster)

He hated that the toast in the cafeteria of the plant where he worked was always burned because it required a busy human to keep an eye on it. So he took on this PIA (Pain in the @%$) Job and figured out a way to automate the toasting process so it wouldn’t burn.

Before the electric toaster, sliced bread was toasted by placing it in a metal frame or on a toasting fork and held over a fire or kitchen grill. The first electric toaster was actually invented in Scotland in 1893. It was a crude device known as the Eclipse. It still relied on users to end the toasting process and was not very fire safe.

So, while some tried to flip the bread, it was Mr. Strite who invented the automatic pop-up toaster. History shows many innovations since – dual sided toasting, wider slots, auto-drop feeds, and numerous interior and exterior material innovations.

This weekend, make yourself some toast and thank crafty Mr. Strite for tackeling this PIA (Pain in the @%$) Job. Oh, and try one of my favorite toppings – honey. Yum!




The day of hot dogs, tears and flags.

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Memorial Day. A day to remember why we get this day off. A day to remember that freedom is not free. It must be protected, nurtured and respected. So enjoy this day off. Have a hot dog. And give thoughts, even prayers to your countrymen & women who are serving in our military, have served and who have given up their lives to make freedom mean something uniquely American. God bless. See you next week.



Tech it out!

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We are proud to announce our continued ISO 9001 Certification. Each and every one of us at KHT values your business and we hope you understand that this certification represents our dedication to you within every process, procedure and action we take.

Here are the eight main business principles we strive to exceed:

• Customer focus
• Leadership
• Involvement of people
• Process approach
• System approach to management
• Continual improvement
• Factual approach to decision making
• Mutually beneficial supplier relationships

We want you to know that it’s not just about performing tasks to conform to the ISO 9001. It’s about performing every task for the mutual good of our businesses. Yours and ours. Simply put, it’s a culture thing here at KHT. It’s what we do. It’s who we are.

— Steve



We All “Deserve A Break Today”

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McDonald’s. Still one of my favorite places to eat.

It’s hard to image “micky dees” started 75 years ago today as a single restaurant and has grown to become the world’s largest chain of hamburger fast food restaurants (70 million customers a day in 119 countries across more than 35,000 outlets) – WOW. Coming from a family of 18 (I’ll save that for another post), as a kid, going to McDonald’s was a big deal – my own burger, fries and a drink.

Founded by the McDonald brothers Richard and Maurice, McDonals’s started out selling hotdogs, and then converted to a simple barbecue restaurant in San Bernardino, CA. It became “McDonaldized” in 1948, and then franchised by the famous Ray Kroc. Ray had a simple vision applying production line thinking to the business – quality materials in – quality finished products (and happy customers) out.

As a businessman, I really appreciate the core of their business – consistency (something very near and dear to us here at KHT) and their guiding principles (QSC – Quality, Service and Cleanliness). When I get the urge for a Big Mac and fries, no matter where I am, I can almost taste the food, and know it’s going to be good – (I’m still hooked on the fries).

At Kowalski Heat Treating, we strive every day to meet your requirements and to delight our customers – and we love it when you return again and allow us to apply our knowledge and skill to your never ending PIA (pain in the @%$) jobs. My guys take great pride in delivering for you, load after load.

40 years ago, my dad, Robert Kowalski, had a vision – to provide top quality heat treating to area customers and help them grow their businesses. His principles are still with us today – honesty, family, hard work, integrity, quality, and faith. And as we celebrate our anniversary this year, we in a way salute the McDonald brothers in their vision.

So next time you are in the area, swing by, and we’ll go treat ourselves at McDonald’s – as I’m sure you deserve a break too. And just for fun, call my voicemail at (216-641-4411) and sing me your best rendition of the Big Mac jingle – I’ll pick my favorites and send you one of our brand spankin’ new KHT coffee mugs.



Do You Like Ice Cream?

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Yea, Me, Too!

Most of you know eating is one of my favorite pastimes. And afterwards, there’s nothing like ice cream … unless of course there’s also pie, or cake, or cookies … But I’m talking ice cream now.

For my tech/info gang, here’s some specs we uncovered:


  • US industrial production of ice cream begun in 1851 in Boston, MA.
  • The largest consumption of ice cream is here in the states, where one average person consumes 48 pints of ice cream per year.
  • The most popular flavor of ice cream is of course vanilla, followed by chocolates, strawberry, cookies n’ cream.
  • Ice cream cones were invented during 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis, when large demand forced ice cream vendor to find help from nearby waffle vendor. (PIA Job for sure) – Together they made history.
  • Over her entire lifetime, one daily cow can produce enough milk for 9,000 gallons of ice cream – it takes 12 gallons of milk to create one gallon of ice cream.
  • Historians remember that Alexander the Great (356-323 BC) loved to eat snow flavored with nectar and honey.
  • One average sized cone of ice cream can be finished off in 50 licks.
  • California is the larger producer of ice cream in United States. During 2003 they alone made 121 million gallons of this cold treat.
  • Ice cream “Brain Freeze” effect is triggered when cold ice touches the roof of your mouth, which causes blood vessels in the head to dilate.
  • End of the World War II was celebrated by eating ice cream.
  • Biggest ice cream sundae (24tons) was created in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada in 1988.
  • There is 273 calories in one cup of vanilla ice cream. (ok engineers – about 30K per year – plus or minus the syrup & nuts)
  • Ice cream can be made in many types – ordinary ice cream, frozen custard, frozen yogurt, reduced-fat ice cream, sherbet, gelato, and others.

KHT OFFER:  Email me your love of ice cream – I’ll pick “my favorites” (just like I do at the counter) and send out Mitchell’s gift certificates.

Find more info at icecreamhistory.net