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Manufacturers Index - Sterling Products Co.; Sterling Tool Products Co.

Sterling Products Co.; Sterling Tool Products Co.
Detroit, MI; Los Angeles, CA; Chicago, IL, U.S.A.
Manufacturer Class: Wood Working Machinery & Metal Working Machinery

Last Modified: Oct 1 2019 7:03PM by Jeff_Joslin
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Beginning sometime around 1936, Sterling Products Co. of Detroit began developing a line of pneumatic handheld sanders, which were soon joined by electric handheld sanders. Around mid-1940 the company relocated to Los Angeles, and a few months later they changed their name to the Sterling Tool Products Co, and then during 1941 they relocated to Chicago.

In 1949 Sterling Tool Products Co. was acquired by Porter-Cable Machine Co., which moved production to their Syracuse, NY, plant. Three of the Sterling products were manufactured under the Porter-Cable name: the model 1000 sander, the low-cost model 105 sander, and the model 1512 air sander.

Information Sources

  • Many of the key dates come from patent records.
  • January 1940 Products Finishing. "Sterling Portable Electric Sander Sterling Products Company, 2452 Woodward Ave., Detroit, Mich., has recently placed on the market an electric Sander to be known as the "Sterling Gyro." This sander has a self-contained, gear-driven electric motor that can be plugged into any socket. A flexible sanding pad operates in a movement which closely simulates hand sanding motion of the skilled craftsman. Gyro Electric Sander operates at 4.000 r.p.m. Abrasive paper can be attached to the sanding pad and held in place by a special holder. One-fourth of a standard size 9 x 11 in. sheet is required to cover the sanding pad . Any type or make of abrasive paper may be used. The Gyro Electric Sander can also be used for rubbing and polishing, in which case cloths can be attached in the same manner as the sandpaper. The Gyro sander is sturdily constructed and weighs 3½ pounds. One hand is all that is required to guide the sanding heat over the work. The Gyro sander can be used in production factories as well as Jobbing shops."
  • October 1940 Motor Age. "The Sterling Products Company of Detroit and Los Angeles, makers of the Sterling Speed-Bloc pneumatic sander and the Sterling Gyro sander, is now the Sterling Tool Products Company of 363 East Ohio Street. Chicago, as of Sept. 1, 1940. In announcing the removal and name change, C. B. Johnson, formerly sales manager of Sterling Products, who becomes ^ ice-president and general manager of the new corporation, stated: 'Heretofore our factory and administrative office has been located at Los Angele3, and our general sales and service office at Detroit. The new arrangement will bring both units together and will greatly facilitate our service and production operations. There have been, no material changes in our field sales organization.' The new organization will continue manufacturing and selling the Sterling Speed-Bloc pneumatic sander and the Sterling Gyro electric sander."
  • 1946 Copyright registrations show items from Sterling Tool Products Co., registered as late as August 1946.
  • July 1948 Motor magazine had a couple of ads for the Sterling 1000 sander.
  • November 1949 Products Finishing.

    THE PORTER-CABLE MACHINE COMPANY, Syracuse 8, N. Y., manufacturer of Speedmatic and Guild portable electric tools, has purchased the manufacturing rights and facilities of the Sterling Electric Tool Products Company for the production of the Sterling portable and pneumatic sanders, according to an announcement by DeAlton J. Ridings, president of the Porter-Cable Company.

    The purchase of the rights and facilities of the Sterling Electric Tool Products Company makes the second business acquisition that Porter-Cable has made within the year. In the fall of 1948 the Unit Electric Tool Company of Syracuse was purchased. This organization's line of woodworking equipment has been added to the Porter- Cable line of Speedmatic tools. The inventory, tools, and production facilities of Sterling Electric Tool Products Company will be moved to Syracuse where Porter-Cable will resume manufacture of the Sterling sanders under the direction of Lloyd B. Benham, vice president and factory manager of Porter-Cable.