Ingenuity, quality the foundations of Construction Attachments

Jan. 12, 2014 @ 08:15 AM

Charles Corriher was on a business trip to England in the early 1980s for a tractor dealership when he noticed a product that he thought would sell well in the U.S.

He went to visit the owner and became a partner in the company, bringing the manufacture of swing-over forks, or forklift arms that fit onto a bulldozer bucket, to Lenoir in 1983.

Today, Corriher is president of that company, Construction Attachments Inc. of Lenoir, and the large facility on Cal Court off Southwest Boulevard is the company’s only location. The company grew out of its original Wilkesboro Boulevard facility in 2003, moving to the newly constructed, 49,000-square-foot facility on Cal Court.

Construction Attachments leans heavily on one product, the 4-in-1 bucket, a highly versatile attachment that can dig, clamp, scrape, grade, back-drag and more. The 4-in-1bucket remains a best-seller, and Construction Attachments was just the second company to manufacture it.  

Today, though, the company’s price catalog lists more than 100 different product lines, with 635 total items, including a snow blade introduced last year. This month, the company will introduce root rake, a tool that digs deep to grab and pull out roots from downed trees but leave the dirt behind. 

Another important piece of the product line is the hydraulic breaker, like a large jackhammer on the end of a bulldozer arm.

Currently, the company employs 47 on-site plus 52 sales representatives across the country, and one more welder will be hired in the near future, said Scott Hatton, sales manager, who has been with the company for 15 years. The company sees little turnover, and the average employee has been there for a decade, he said.

The company plans to expand to fill a now-vacant room at the rear of the company’s current site, Hatton said. The room is big enough for a new workshop and double production.

The company has steadily grown over the years, but when the recession hit and construction nearly disappeared, it was agricultural sales that pulled the company through the tough times. Today, sales are higher than 2008, before the recession's effects were felt.

Construction Attachments’ products can be seen on equipment all across the country, throughout South America and in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Equipment in Iraq has even been fitted with armor-plated buckets to protect operators in combat zones.

Each item comes with a one-year warranty, a “Made in U.S.A.” sticker and, Hatton said, a bit of pride for the piece’s quality and workmanship.