Sertco's Journey: Okemah Company Moves from Aerospace to Motorcycles to Oil Field

By Tuttle, D Ray | THE JOURNAL RECORD, March 3, 2015 | Go to article overview

Sertco's Journey: Okemah Company Moves from Aerospace to Motorcycles to Oil Field


Tuttle, D Ray, THE JOURNAL RECORD


-TULSA - Sertco Industries Inc. was a cutting-edge aerospace manufacturer when it started 36 years ago.

Then a friendship with a motorcycle drag racer and a suggestion from a secretary's husband propelled the company in a new direction: building natural gas compressors.

Okemah-based Sertco now employs 65 people and expects $25 million in sales this year, President Mikko Crouch said.

Rick Crouch, Mikko's father and the founder, used the latest computer numerical control machinery available in 1979. A CNC machine cuts or mills metal using a computer program. Sertco was among the first aerospace machine shops to use 100-percent CNC machines. Customers included Cessna, McDonnell Douglas, Boeing and the U.S. Department of Defense.

In the early 1980s, Rick Crouch met and became friends with Tulsa motorcycle dealer Marshall Farr, owner of Farr's Cycles.

"(Farr) was big into drag-racing cycles," Mikko Crouch said.

Farr and other drag racers were attempting to beef up the horsepower from factory engines. They boosted power, but the re- engineered motors created too much torque and kept breaking down.

Rick Crouch applied his aerospace manufacturing process to racing and developed an improved engine cylinder.

That created another problem, however. Horsepower increased tenfold, but the transmissions began breaking as brittle gears snapped from the higher power.

Sertco then created a sprocket that reduced transmission failure. The award-winning innovation was named the most significant new product in motorcycle racing in 1993.

In an effort to stay ahead, Rick Crouch started work on a new motorcycle engine in 1996.

About a year later, Thompson Speir, whose family had a business renovating old compressors and reselling them, took note of the ongoing engine designs and suggested that the engine that Crouch was creating would be ideal for natural gas compressors. Thompson Speir was married to Gina Speir, who was the secretary to Mikko Crouch.

Rick and Mikko Crouch thought the idea had merit and formed an energy division in late 1997.

The segment has become Sertco's main focus, but it got off to a rocky start, Mikko Crouch said.

Sertco made three engines in 1997. The next year Sertco made six, but had to buy two back when they failed.

"That almost sunk us," Mikko Crouch said. "We sold them for $50,000 each and suddenly that was $100,000 that we thought we had but lost."

Fortunately, the company remained in the aerospace parts business and that side of the operation was doing well, Mikko Crouch said.

"We funneled money from aerospace to compressors," Mikko Crouch said. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Sertco's Journey: Okemah Company Moves from Aerospace to Motorcycles to Oil Field
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.