Thomas Howard White had been manufacturing sewing machines in 1866 when he decided to move to Cleveland, Ohio. While there he continued to expand his business in all directions to include bikes, cars, and roller skates. Soon he had over 1,000 employees. Thomas had always sought for improvements to his products and eventually his engineers improved the drill press, automatic lathes, replacement parts and screw-making machines. Thus, the Cleveland Machine Screw Co. was started.
He soon gained the attention of a ball-bearing company. Thomas had some issues with the company name though. People seemed confused by what the company manufactured so a name change was in order. Cleveland Tapping Machines is what the name was changed to. Of all the things this simple company expanded to being a high-quality tapping machine company was one of them. This was an “E line” lead screw tapping machine. The “E line” was automatically successful because defense industries wanted reliable parts. Of course, there was a spin off to that machine as well. The new fitting machines were to connect the old “E line” tappers to the new pipe elbows, tees and couplings that were now being needed in the consumer household. Thomas was a man who held many ideas for companies, and he succeeded. He knew what the world needed, and he ventured to get them the machines to do it. Eventually the Cleveland tapping machine moved to Connecticut.
Even today “Cleveland” is still the best-known name for outstanding quality, heavy duty tapping and combination drilling, reaming, and chamfering machines in the country. Many custom-built machines have been made utilizing the precision components of the “E line” machines. Many replacement parts come from this company. They are used in conjunction with CNC technology and process automation with things like robotics, dial index, in-line, and shuttle. We use many things we can attribute to the Cleveland tapping machines. Every machine we use has parts from other machines. Not all machine parts are interchangeable in today’s technology but back in the early part of the century most machine parts were easily swapped out with parts from a similar machine.