May 20, 2015

20/05/2015: Bucket Stax: How does Maxi-Lift Inc stack up against the competition?

Darren Parris from the Milling and Grain team talks to Maxi-Lift on their stand at GEAPS Exchange 2015, about the Stax elevator bucket launch

First published in Milling and Grain, March 2015

During the GEAPS Exchange Expo held in St Louis, Missouri in the USA last month (from February 22-25), Maxi-Lift was comfortably stacking on the competitive pressure. Having started trading in 1973, over 40 years ago, the business has continued to grow both domestically and globally with operations in over 70 countries and a client list that continues to grow year-on-year.

With more than 300,000 square feet of production, manufacturing, and warehouse space, Maxi-Lift is the largest elevator bucket manufacturer in North America. With such a global network of clients, the logistics involved has developed over the years to the point where the company has distributors throughout the world offering the full catalogue of Maxi-Lift Inc products, which are available to fulfil the diverse needs of their customers.

Talking with the Maxi-Lift team at the GEAPS Exchange, I was reminded that their products are used across the World on rice farms in Guyana, elevator upgrades in Romania, new feed plants in China, large river and port projects in North America, and the largest soybean processing plants in Argentina.

The team further explained to me that the Maxi-Lift name is known internationally for outstanding product quality and service. This is why they are proud to call themselves the global leaders in the industry.
Much has happened over their 40 years in business. Starting off selling primarily elevator buckets, Maxi-Lift has transformed itself into a global leader in elevator components.

One only has to look at the significant, growing catalogue of products to realize that this is a company with true innovation and foresight.

Talking with Business Development Manager, Mr Wade Spencer, at GEAPS, he told me, “At Maxi-Lift, we are defined by our strong brands, innovative products, technical expertise and friendly customer service.

“These are just a few of the many reasons our customers consider us the global leaders in plastic and metal elevator buckets.”

Mr Spencer has over 27 years of experience in the grain and feed industries. He joined Maxi-Lift two years ago after an extensive career in grain industry maintenance. His career to that point was split between working for EarthGrains and more recently for ADM as a maintenance supervisor for a major grain facility. He also spent three years using his maintenance and millwright knowledge for Lewis-Goetz and Company which produces rubber belting among other products.

Wade is a current GEAPS member and is active in the Great Plains chapter. He has also given preventative maintenance seminars for The Kansas Grain and Feed and The National Grain and Feed Association.

Maxi-Lift offers the expertise to help customers understand the technical side of their equipment including screw, drag and belt conveyors with bucket and related equipment.

Bucket launch
As a strong customer-focused company, Maxi- Lift is always looking for the best ways to please its customers. Whilst maintaining the continuity of quality, new innovation is always just around the corner.
With their customers in mind, Maxi-Lift chose GEAPS in St Louis as the international platform to launch their HD-STAX elevator bucket. I met with Mr. Spencer on their impressive display at GEAPS – it was the one where buckets were displayed to represent the 190-metre Gateway Arch that identifies this city and port. Maxi-Lift had gone the extra mile to honor both the city and their new bucket line.

Stacked up to 20-feet high and forming an impressive entrance to their stand, the ‘Bucket-way Arch’ stood triumphant - made entirely of the company’s new stackable HD-STAX Buckets. Not to be completely overshadowed by an Arch, its expo team was cheered on by none-other than the St Louis Rams Cheerleaders to show support to the vibrant city.

It was here that Mr Spencer demonstrated the positive attributes of the HD-STAX Buckets compared to other industry leading buckets. With their overseas customers in mind, the HD-STAX bucket can be stacked one inside the other for better storage, stacking and shipping.

With maximum ‘stackability’ comes maximum savings. In many cases when compared to other buckets, you can stack, for example, nine HD-STAX buckets compared to three identical buckets giving improved efficiency.

During their launch at GEAPS, Paul Phillips, President of Maxi-Lift, said “We are always looking at innovative ways to help our customers solve their problems. The new HD-Stax allows our customers to move more buckets, in a smaller space, more efficiently while also giving our customers longer life, more reliability, and better long-term value.” It’s a win-win for everyone.
Not all buckets created equally
Having travelled the globe on behalf of the Milling and Grain magazine, I have witnessed first-hand the many different companies making buckets. The global competition has many faces with many different qualities and it is clear that not all buckets are created equally.

Five new product lines have been added in the last 15 years to the already over 700 different buckets which come in different shapes and sizes. All designed to handle very specific materials whilst always focusing on a better reliability, longer life, and a lower cost.

So confident is this company in their product, they invite any potential or existing customer to contact them ( with details of your current usage including: Average bucket life; current bucket brand; size and style now in use; current bucket problem; material being elevated; current belt spacing; hole punch spacing and belt width.

Maxi-Lift’s experienced staff is willing to offer capacity optimization, elevator design, and trouble shooting for new or existing grain elevators. So, in answer to my initial question, it seems Maxi-Lift is stacking up nicely.
Read the magazine HERE.

The Global Miller
This blog is maintained by The Global Miller staff and is supported by the magazine GFMT
which is published by Perendale Publishers Limited.

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