Equipment Inventory Keeps Contractor Self-Reliant

Handling every aspect of a job in-house means complete control over the project schedule

Equipment Inventory Keeps Contractor Self-Reliant

Charlie Fisher would rather buy a lot of equipment than depend on other contractors in order to complete his work.

Fisher owns Ken-way Excavating of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, along with Pat and Dan Zamastil. They offer a wide range of services to their customers and have even brought pipe bursting into their onsite work because it can make many jobs a lot easier.

Fisher and his partners have found this to be the best route to profitability for the company.

“I don’t like to call other subcontractors to accomplish a contract. It makes us more effective and a lot more productive if we can do everything internally, and we don’t have to source out things that affect our schedule or maybe the outcome of our job,” Fisher says.

Take the company's use of pipe bursting equipment for its onsite work. The pipe burster is an effective piece of equipment on its own, but Fisher says you have to be mindful of the complementary pieces of equipment.

“The dump truck, and the excavator, and the vac truck, and the trench boxes … everything comes together as one function,” he says.

For example, when he and his partners started their business in March 2010, they had no dump trucks and had to hire all the trucking work.

“We know today how valuable a dump truck is,” Fisher says.

When they need a truck, now it’s there. There is no longer the stress of trying to find someone who can fit their trucking schedule into Ken-way Excavating’s project schedule — or worse, the risk of having one or more job schedules delayed by the lack of a truck.

And all of the company’s six dump trucks are the same. All are Macks with the same chassis, transmission, rear end and motor. It makes it easier on the drivers.

“When something breaks we have the parts on the shelf,” Fisher says. “We can maintain them and fix them. It’s simple.”

Read more about Ken-way Excavating in the April 2019 issue of Cleaner magazine.


Comments on this site are submitted by users and are not endorsed by nor do they reflect the views or opinions of COLE Publishing, Inc. Comments are moderated before being posted.