Steffes Corp: Bringing visions to lifeOut on the vast prairies and grasslands of western North Dakota stand structures resembling creatures and buildings seen in Star Wars and other science-fiction movies. But who makes such structures and where are they coming from?
Out on the vast prairies and grasslands of western North Dakota stand structures resembling creatures and buildings seen in Star Wars and other science-fiction movies. But who makes such structures and where are they coming from?
One answer is the Steffes Corp. in Dickinson.
Although the company has been in business since the 1940s, work to manufacture different structures for oil field use has recharged the company and work continues to pick up said Todd Mayer, Steffes Corp. oil sales and new products.
“We just surpassed our 3,000 mark not too long ago in the number of tanks built,” Kelly Buresh, Steffes Corporation oil field sales, said.
Oil field tanks, walkway and stairway systems, steel secondary containment systems, custom oil field products, cattle guards and oil field accessories are just some things the Steffes Corporation makes for use in the oil fields, Mayer said.
The secondary containment systems and heater treaters are some of the company’s latest products.
Mayer said heater treaters separate oil, saltwater and gas.
“They have been around for a year and are proving to be a worthwhile venture,” Mayer said. “We plumb them and are a local distributer which is more convenient for our customers.”
The Steffes Corp. is also field testing an engineered flare and combuster.
The secondary containment systems are meant to hold oil and water in the event of a leak or spill.
They are usually built around heater treaters and oil field tanks.
The system uses 12-gauge steel for the panels and 10-gauge steel for the posts, according to the Steffes Corp. website. These components are powder coated over galvanized steel designed to survive tough conditions.
“Some other companies use dirt to make a berm,” (raised barrier separating two areas) Mayer said, adding that is not bad, but it can settle or if something disturbs it (animals, people, weather, ect.) small ruts, trenches, settling or packing can lower the height or make it unstable. Steel stays the same height and requires less maintenance it also looks cleaner and more professional.”
Rodger Pearson, Steffes Corporation division manager of manufacturing solutions value stream, said he enjoys the emphasis on localized service.
“The things we build for the most part stay in the area,” Rodger Pearson said. “You can go on a Sunday drive and see things being used out in the field that were once in the shop.”
He added he the industry is ever-changing — new challenges, new products and new customers.
“A lot of the United States has seen a downturn in economy but southwest North Dakota is vibrant and it affects everyone in the plant,” Pearson said.
He said it is also exciting to do custom work.
“Being able to fulfill a need no one else can and provide good customer service and quality products is just wonderful,” Pearson said.
Meyer said he enjoys working for the Steffes Corporation because the company is always looking for ways to do things better.
“Safety and quality are top priority,” Mayer said. “It’s not a dead industry. Never do you hear ‘lets just do it like we have always done it.’ The company is always looking to improve and listens to the thoughts and ideas of its employees, customers and others in the industry.”