Who We Are
Our customers trust us to build components they need. If your production schedule depends on a reliable supplier, talk to Vance. We’re an ISO 9001:2015-certified, lean manufacturer— with an powerful ERP system integrated into our production process to keep things moving swiftly and smoothly for every client. We continue to invest in state-of-the-art technology like our plasma and laser equipment to improve the speed, precision, and scale we offer our customers.
WHAT MAKES US GREAT – OUR PEOPLE!
Where we come from
August 7, 1880
James R. Vance started Vance Boiler Works at Canal and Bradford streets in Geneva with his newly patented boiler. Business thrived and everybody knew that Vance Boiler Works made boilers.
October 16, 1897
The Vance Boiler Works received a contract to build new 40-horsepower patent boilers to be placed in the state armory. The company also began building large boilers for heating spacious new city buildings in the American West, and monster 80-horsepower boilers for the Waterloo Organ Company.
December 1, 1912
Original Vance Boiler Works building destroyed by fire.
Bernard Borgman, principal stockholder in the company, announced he would not resume business after the fire. The Geneva Chamber of Commerce arranged for the George E. Sealy Company, Inc., of New York City, to take over Vance and resume manufacturing. Sealy was a large builder of boilers and tanks and once served as a prominent sales agent for Vance. The Sealy Company purchased the stock of the old Vance business, including the site, the plant’s remains, and the company’s patents—and began the process of rebuilding.
Reconstruction commenced. The concrete work on the building was done by Walter Curtis of Geneva and the building was erected by the American Bridge Company. The new main building was 162’ x 75’ and built entirely of concrete, steel, corrugated iron, and glass—considered fireproof.
The company began to manufacture weldments—pieces of steel welded together ranging from a few pounds to several hundred pounds—and miscellaneous iron works such as stairs, railings, and door and window frames.
Roughly 80% of Vance Metal Fabricators’ business was for the construction industry, including new products such as structural steel and internal steel members. The company added a night shift to handle its growth. At the same time, Vance expanded into Aluminum Processing, converting one of its buildings into a modern aluminum plant.
Construction began on two buildings on a three-acre tract on Gambee Road in Geneva. One was a 2,000-square-foot office building for engineering, drafting, and administration, as well as a lunch room and other facilities for members of the Iron Workers Union Local 464 and Outside Iron Workers Local 33. The other building was the manufacturing plant, 60’ x 150’ with 9,000 square feet of manufacturing space. Every square foot was covered by overhead cranes.
For a 75 year period the Dobbin family, Earl, Bill Sr., Will and Mike played a key role in the direction and success of Vance Metal Fabricators.
The construction field bottomed out. Vance officials knew they would have to diversify to survive. So in the years to come, the company expanded into several new industries. Joseph Hennessy was appointed vice president of manufacturing and operations. He came to the company from Goulds Pumps in Seneca Falls. Hennessy would spend many years helping guide the company as it continued adapting to a rapidly changing world.
August 7, 1980
Vance marked its 100th anniversary.
Vance Metal made its first winery tank—and two decades later, the company builds tanks for distilleries, wineries, breweries, and cider houses in 19 states and counting.
Vance Metal transitioned into an ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan) company that now includes dozens of employee owners.
Vance unveils a fresh brand mark and web presence to carry it into the next generation of business.
What we stand for
- Machine tool
- Feed processing equipment
- Mining equipment
- Construction equipment
- Beverage tanks including wine, beer, and cider
- Renewable energy
- Pulp and paper
- Testing equipment
PROUDLY ISO CERTIFIED
Vance is an International Standards Organization company with an ISO 9001:2015 certification.
EMPLOYEE OWNED SINCE 2008
In 2008, Vance was converted to an Employee Stock Ownership Plan—or ESOP—so the company is now employee owned. The move further solidified our culture and commitment to excellence.