s i • South Star Corporation : e h s T su re • STJ 600 Volt Cable Is tu • The Challenge of the Decades a e F • The Sound of Quality • Classified Ads - Help Wanted, Excess Inventory & Used Machinery January February 2012 South Star Corp Growing, profitable, and progressive By Fred Noer _________________________________ “I love what I do. I enjoy coming to work every day.” Based on those words by South Star Corp. owner and president Lisa Peters, you probably can imagine what kind of company she has – growing, profitable, progressive, free of debt and certified by ISO.Those attributes mean her firm is an outstanding place to work, so employee turnover is low and quality is high. One more characteristic about Peters aligns her with her company – respect. “We treat everybody with respect,” she said. “I’ve been very fortunate because we have good employees who do quali- ty work. We bend over backwards to please our customers.” South Star Corp. (SSC) manufactures wiring harnesses, control cabinets, cable assemblies and instrument panels. The products are used in buses, semi trucks, transformers in power substations and heavy-duty equipment such as peanut combines and air-conditioning units. The firm, which has $3 million in annual sales, is located in Elliston, Va., a village of 900 residents approximately 15 miles southwest of Roanoke.The SSC facility measures 25,000 square feet and was constructed new in 1998 specifical- ly for SSC. “We really like it here in Montgomery County because there are good people who really opened their arms to us,” The Sound of Quality By Pressmaster _________________________________ n the pre-industrial era, the char- acteristics defining an economic transaction included both the quantity and quality of goods for trade. According to the seventeenth century economist Nicholas Barbon, “The quali- ties of wares are known by their colour, sound, smell, taste, make, or shape; [and] every man having a good opinion of his own faculties, it is hard to find a judge to determine which is best.” (Barbon, 1690). Hence, in Barbon’s view, quality is considered to be subjective and expe- riential to the beholder of the goods. I This concept of quality was further acknowledged by American writer and philosopher Robert Pirsig as his hero Phaedrus relates “Quality doesn’t have to be defined. You understand it with- out definition, ahead of definition.” (Pir- sig, 1991). Thus the science of engineer- ing, technology, and manufacturing became important elements in provid- ing quality goods. Ownership and accountability to the quality of goods gave birth to the trade- mark, a symbol exclusively identified with the commercial source or origin of the product. These marks have become Melissa Taylor, Janice Caswell and Lisa Peters reviewing drawings. Peters said.“They wanted our business. The employee base in the county has good, capable people.” Constructing the building is one of several highlights in SSC history. The company was started in 1976 by Peters’ parents, Bob and Roma Stverak, in a two- car garage in Salem, Va. According to Peters, her father had the expertise, but her mother had the motivation. “It was Mom’s idea to do this,” Peter said about her parents, both of whom are deceased. “She urged Dad to strike out on his own. She was the driving force who said,‘Let’s take the risk.’” Bob Stverak, 45 years old at the time, had spent most of his career as an engi- neer at General Motors in Michigan and Chicago. Roma Stverak was 43 and had come to the United States from Lithua- nia at age 13 with her parents. Her back- ground was in banking and accounting. In that Salem garage, which housed ______________ Continued on page 42 STJ 600 Volt Cable STJ cable is a popular 600 volt high- performance, high-temperature wire that can withstand heat up to 200°C. It is the commercial equivalent of a M27500 or NEMA WC 27500 Type RC-06 wire. STJ cable is constructed to withstand the hazards of harsh applications, such as those encountered in the aerospace industry. This cable features impressive physical and electrical properties due to its strong construction created with high-quality, high-performance materials. At Allied Wire & Cable, STJ is manufac- tured and tested on-site at its Col- legeville, PA Headquarters, so no one understands the process of building this cable better.This article will explore the manufacturing process, the construction of the cable, cable testing, and custom STJ cable options. STJ Cable Manufacturing Standard STJ cables start with HP3 Type E (previously M16878/4) inners. The conductors are stranded silver-plat- ed copper.The number and size of con- ductors vary, but most manufacturers offer a maximum of four to five, ranging in size from 26 AWG to 10 AWG. Silver- plated copper is used for its wide oper- ating temperature range and its excel- lent conductivity. The insulation of the conductors is made of extruded Polytetrafluoroethyl- ene (PTFE, popularly referred to by its Dupont brand name, Teflon). PTFE is commonly used in high-performance cables for its great physical and dielec- _______________Continued on page 16 _______________Continued on page 20 STJ Cable is manufactured by Allied Wire & Cable at its Collegeville, Penn- sylvania headquarters.