Two local businessmen have started a new recycling facility in a building that has sat vacant for the last seven to eight years.
Jim Brinker and Roger Langendoerfer are business partners who started a new recycling operation at the old SKF foundry, 1801 W. Main St., in the Feltmann Industrial Park in the west end of Washington.
The company, called Jim Brinker Recycling Inc., is open to both businesses and the general public. Already, the business has recycled metal from an old press at The Missourian’s building in Downtown Washington.
The business is open six days a week — Mondays through Saturdays. Hours are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays.
Langendoerfer said he and Brinker bought the 110,000-square-foot building and the 15 acres that the building sits on.
“It’s an ideal spot for what we want to do,” Langendoerfer said.
Signs on the property say, “We buy all types of metal,” but the recycling facility will accept other recyclables, including scrap gold, scrap iron, old bathtubs, stoves, refrigerators, old cars, automobile parts as well as cardboard.
Langendoerfer said a rise in awareness of environmental issues led him and Brinker to start the business.
“We saw a real need in the community and there has been an emphasis on the necessity of recycling instead of filling landfills,” Langendoerfer said.
Brinker has been in the recycling business since 1995.
One thing that Lang- endoerfer said he hopes sets this recycling operation apart from others is the “state-of-the-art” equipment. He also hopes to be more efficient, which in turn will mean “we’ll be able to pay a higher price” for recycled items.
Langendoerfer noted one interesting fact about the new company is that the building will be back in American hands.
“It was previously owned by a Chinese bank,” he said.
Additionally, Langen-doerfer said the business may utilize the team track rail siding that is being constructed nearby.
Langendoerfer and Brinker will work with two other employees. They have been working for the last two weeks cleaning up the property, removing brush and mowing grass. They also are continuing work on cleaning the interior of the building.
Brinker and Langendoerfer have been friends for about 40 years and have done past business ventures together.
Darren Lamb, community and economic development director for Washington, hinted at a new business coming to the foundry at the Washington Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual business breakfast in early November.
Langendoerfer said Lamb along with other city officials have been helpful in starting the new business. “They’ve helped tremendously,” Langendoerfer said.
History of Building
McQuay-Norris, a St. Louis Company, made automobile engine parts such as piston rings and started building the first section of the foundry about 40 years ago to help distribute auto parts to small “mom and pop stores,” according to Fred Hodgson, manager at SKF for a number of years.
Hodgson, who worked at Eaton in Vassar, Mich., was transferred to the Washington foundry in 1972. Hodgson said the foundry was built a few years before his transfer and then was expanded.
Later, SKF, a Swedish company, bought out Eaton. Hodgson said it was under SKF management, that a second foundry at the site was built to help make larger castings. SKF later closed the foundry.
For more information about Jim Brinker Recycling Inc., people may call 636-390-4602.