Charles Machine Works Acquires American Augers, Trencor

By Robert Carpenter, Editor | November 2012, Vol. 67, No. 11

“Our strategy has been to buy and grow companies; however, we sold our utility trencher and drill line to Toro earlier this year, and the opportunity became available to sell American Augers and the Trencor line of large trenchers at Astec Underground.”

Reshaping CMW
American Augers, based in West Salem, OH, was founded in 1970. It is one of the leading mid-to-large horizontal directional drilling machine manufacturers in the world, producing rigs from 60,000 to 1.1 million pounds of pullback. Their product line also includes earth boring machines, mud pump and cleaning systems and tooling and accessories.

CMW currently does not manufacture track trenchers, but had an agreement with Tesmec to produce and brand certain units as “Ditch Witch.” Their small fleet primarily has been used as rental units, most recently for shale oil and gas work. Trencor manufactures a wide range of track trenchers but perhaps is best known for its larger units most often utilized in pipeline construction.

With these purchases, CMW becomes an instant industry leader in large horizontal rigs, auger boring and track trenchers, no longer being limited to small-to-medium equipment categories.

“The American Augers and Trencor products provide additional capabilities for the installation of pipe and cable,” Sewell-Howard pointed out. “The additional maxi rigs, mud handling options and auger boring line expand our underground presence and allow CMW to better serve all customers.

“The strength of the American Augers team was a determining factor in our decision to acquire the company,” she continued. “We will fully leverage their market, channel and product line knowledge to grow the company.”

Astec will continue to manufacture other products from its Loudon, TN, facility which will require the relocation of Trencor track trencher manufacturing.

“The operation in West Salem, OH, has an excellent facility. We will leverage it for production of the full American Augers product line and eventually the Trencor product line, which will transition from Louden, TN. Both the Trencor and American Augers product lines will be managed through the American Augers team in Ohio,” Sewell-Howard explained.