GEM Inc. has a long history of working jointly with trade unions to make sure customers receive the quality, safety and return on investment they deserve. It recently added to this history by becoming a signatory contractor to SMART Local Union 33 (Toledo District), also becoming a member of SMACNA in the process.

GEM has supported more than 45 customers in multiple industries since launching its sheet metal group in February 2021. It currently has over 50 sheet metal workers, with room for many more, said Nathan Schroeder, GEM’s piping/mechanical manager.

“There are positions we are looking to fill up. There are a lot of opportunities, from entry level to project management.”

– GEM Inc. Piping/Mechanical Manager Nathan Schroeder

“There are positions we are looking to fill up,” Schroeder said. “There are a lot of opportunities, from entry level to project management.”

All sheet metal fabrication is completed by Local 33 members at GEM’s 12,000-square-foot shop in Walbridge, Ohio, which also supports GEM’s regional offices in the Cleveland, Lima and Detroit markets. At present, sheet metal workers are working on two large projects in northern Ohio, a two million-square-foot solar manufacturing facility and a one million-square-foot canning plant.

GEM’s philosophy is to treat tradespeople with the respect they deserve by supporting their professional development with training, superb facilities and equipment, as well as by creating an environment where their input is encouraged and appreciated.

“GEM has a reputation in this industry as a great contractor to work for,” Schroeder said.

GEM designs, fabricates and installs commercial and industrial heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) sheet metal ductwork. Its fabricators are also experienced at projects that require welding or heavier metals. Duct testing, balancing and cleaning services are available through the GEM service division, providing a seamless, single-source vendor experience. GEM’s investment in all-new shop equipment includes:

Trimble automated software for ductwork fittings and layout

  • Trimble automated software for ductwork fittings and layout
  • 5’ x 10’ Mestek Lockformer Automated Plasma Table
  • Complete set of power roll forming equipment including:
    – Pittsburgh lock, both male and female, with cleat forme
    – TDF ductwork flange former
    – 4&1 roll forming
    – Power cleat former
  • Hand brakes and formers including:
    – 10-foot 16GA sheet metal hand break
    – Cheek benderDrive/bar folder
    – 3- and 4-foot hand rollers
  • Ductwork insulation liner equipment including:
    – Liner processing and cutting table
    – Industrial glue application equipment
    – DuroDyne Pinspotter
  • Large power equipment:
    – 10-foot 14GA Roper Whitney Power Shear including precision back gauge
    – Roper Whitney 10-foot 14GA Computerized Auto-Brake including a 10-foot box break and precision back gauge
    – 6-foot 10GA Power Roll

GEM’s in-house Virtual Design & Construction (VDC) group uses virtual 3D scanning, CAD and Building Information Modeling (BIM) software. Laser scanning can do everything, from providing data for detailed surveys of existing conditions, to creating and verifying the accuracy of as-built drawings. A 3D laser scanning system streamlines difficult “in-place” measurements by generating a precise and accurate 3D computer image of a structure, piece of equipment or an entire area. Laser scanned images form a point cloud that is imported into CAD software, enabling the shop to create the ductwork with high accuracy.

“These technologies enable us to plan and design the work virtually before it gets to installers on the jobsite,” Schroeder said. “Issues that could arise in the field and cause costly delays are resolved in the design phase, saving the customer time and money.”