Since the mid-1940’s, Hunter Engineering has been revolutionizing the automotive industry. In the early to mid-1930’s, Lee Hunter, founder of Hunter Engineering and a 23-year-old architecture student at the time, invented a way to quick charge automotive batteries – even after the experts said that it could never be done.

Under the company name, Lee Hunter Jr., Manufacturing Co., Hunter and team sold the Kwikurent Rapid Battery Charger as fast as they could make them. After serving his country in WWII, Hunter returned to St. Louis where he reopened his business under the name into the next step of the process. of Hunter Engineering. Today, still headquartered in St. Louis, MO, Hunter has expanded globally; designing, manufacturing, and selling a wide range of award-winning and cutting-edge auto service products.
One of Hunter’s more popular parts, their collets, are of the highest quality and provide optimized centering during an auto
balance procedure. When lead times and deliveries were becoming more and more inconsistent from vendors, Hunter took matters into their own hands and brought the production of their collets in-house.

Hunter chose to partner with Hartwig for their well-known manufacturing solutions and support, as well as the knowledge and expertise of their Application’s team. Hunter’s machining cell consists of two twin-spindle Okuma 2SP-250H lathes, an induction heat-treating device, laser etching, a flip station, and a machine-tending robot.


The Okuma cell allows Hunter to have complete control and has saved them a ton of money. Doug Foht, Manufacturing Engineering Manager at Hunter, has been around the Okuma brand for many years.

“Okuma is the Cadillac of lathes. They just work.” ~ Doug Vogt, Manufacturing Engineer Manager

Foht goes on to say, “The Okuma 2SP-250H machines are so many things: integrable, powerful, and customizable.” With their new cell, Hunter is now producing one dual-taper collet every 90 seconds. Simply incredible.


The machine cell set-up was a collaborative and team effort by both Hunter and Hartwig. Hartwig Application Engineer, Jason Schumacher, was Hartwig’s lead on this project.

“We worked really well as a team. This has to be one of the most state-of-the-art automated cells within Hartwig’s St. Louis territory.
~ Jason Schumacher, Hartwig Application Engineer

Hartwig’s Applications team is always willing to do whatever it takes to produce cutting-edge solutions for their customers. The knowledge and extra effort that the Application Engineers possess is what makes them the best in the St. Louis area.

“We choose to partner with Hartwig because of their service, their high-quality equipment, and the annual Preventive Maintenance they provide.” ~ D. Vogt

Check out the machining cell in action!

For more information, please contact: Hunter Engineering or our Hartwig, Inc. St. Louis, MO location.