Sure-Lock Industries Prospers

Oswego, NY, June 13--It has been less than a year since Sure-Lock Industries, LLC relocated its hardwood flooring manufacturing company from its original home in Red Creek to the Oswego Warehousing compound in Oswego, according to the Oswego Business Magazine. Since the transition, owner Arthur Brown says his business continues to flourish. "We’re getting there," Brown says. While the circumstances that resulted in the creation of Sure-Lock Industries are not among Brown’s fondest memories, he says the growing success of his company brings continued gratification. Brown explains that he has been around woodworking for most of his life and has been a self-employed business man for more than 30 years. "My father has been involved in woodworking so I have been around it since the mid-1950s," he says. "I’ve had my own business since the ‘70s." In its heyday, Brown says his original family business in Red Creek was the largest clock case manufacturer in the country, making cases for every clock company in the United States. Approximately 10 years ago, however, the company lost its largest customer to a manufacturer in Korea. "We had a hard time finding something to take its place," Brown says. "So we decided on flooring." Established in 1995 at his original Red Creek location, Sure-Lock Industries quickly began making a name for itself as a manufacturer of pre-finished engineered hardwood flooring. Brown, who developed the specially engineered flooring, holds a U.S. patent on the company’s products. "It is still woodworking," Brown says. "But it is a lot less complicated (than the clock case manufacturing business)." With the success of Sure-Lock on the rise, Brown says the business essentially grew out of its Red Creek location. "We ran out of space there," he says. "I like our new location. It is a wonderful building." Brown explains that his radiant-heated flooring is engineered to withstand radiant heat levels that traditional lumber wood flooring cannot. "A lot of newer homes have heated floors," Brown says. "You can’t put traditional lumber hardwood flooring down because the wood expands and contracts. The engineered hardwood flooring doesn’t, so it works really well." Brown notes that each piece of the company’s engineered floor boards initially covers one-square foot of space. The company then takes many pieces of that flooring and combines them to create a 15-square foot panel. "It becomes one large piece," Brown explains. On the ends of each panel, the ends are staggered so that they essentially fit together with the other pieces like a puzzle. "When it is put down, you can’t see that it is one piece," he notes. "It looks like a lot of individual staggered pieces, just like wood floors are supposed to look." The benefit, Brown says, is a significant cost reduction for labor expenses. "Especially in commercial jobs, the installation costs are reduced by approximately 75 percent over more traditional products," Brown says. He explains that while there is a great deal more precision work involved in the patented product, it considerably reduces the workload for the customer. "There is a lot of precision, instead of 150 steps to the finished product," he says. "Most of our own products are sold to stores in shopping malls all over the United States," Brown explains. To date, Sure-Lock’s own brand of flooring is installed under shopping racks in stores like Guess, The Limited and the Gap in 42 states, he says. "We also sell directly from the factory to homeowners and contractors," Brown says. While retail shops make up a large base of his customers, Brown notes that he occasionally serves unique customers. "Hardwood floors have become very popular," Brown says. "Occasionally, we have a high profile job." More locally, Brown says his flooring will be installed on a floor of the new high-rise building at the Turning Stone Casino.

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