EDCO – Equipment Development Company has always created long-lasting equipment that solves many problems.
In 1959 EDCO began as a manufacturing arm of Rental Tools & Equipment outside Washington, DC. EDCO founders Leo Swan and Ed Harding were employees of RT&E, and discovered the biggest issue their rental customers commonly had – leveling concrete floors. At that time, the only ways to level and smooth concrete surfaces were limited to one’s hands or crudely modified buffing machines. To help their customers, Leo, Ed and RT&E owner John Doran, created the modern day concrete floor grinder. Eventually, with this grinder as their cornerstone, Leo and Ed founded EDCO; a manufacturer of “Rental-Tough” products.
As you see below, EDCO Grinders have evolved since 1959, but EDCO Magna-Trap® Grinders have always kept the same principals – long-lasting equipment that solves many problems.
The History of
1959 - The Debut
EDCO founders and grinder inventors Leo Swan & Ed Harding were coworkers at Rental Tools & Equipment. The first grinder was built to satisfy the needs of this one rental store’s customers. The machine was designed with 2 counter-rotating discs to which grinding stones were attached via a wooden wedge. The grinder began to solve common surface preparation applications - smoothing concrete, erasing surface imperfections and light leveling. This original grinder, made of crudely fabricated parts, is on display at EDCO headquarters in Frederick, MD.
While grinder accessories would change in the coming years, the wooden wedge system would remain until 2012.
1967 - The Formative Years
By the mid 1960s Leo Swan & Ed Harding had officially formed EDCO, an American manufacturing company. They evolved the 2-Disc Grinder from a single unit into a fully branded product being sold around the United States. This grinder was more productive than its yellow predecessor.
1975 - Evolution & Safety
Health officials began to understand the hazards of silica dust. Silica is microscopic dust hidden inside visible concrete and masonry dust clouds. Long-term exposure causes silicosis and other respiratory diseases. In response to this health alert, EDCO added dust shrouds with vacuum hook-ups to all products. Adding vacuum capabilities kept workers safe and drastically reduced jobsite cleaning times, making jobs faster.
1989: The Explosion of Diamond Grinding Tools
Grinding accessories evolved with the advancement of concrete and surface coverings. New coatings like epoxy, thin-set and sealers were now being applied to floors. These coverings are stronger and more complex than surface finishers of the 1950s. Diamond impregnated tools grind and remove these coatings. Older Grinding Stones proved to be ineffective.
EDCO’s patented Dyma-Serts set the standard for diamond grinding tools. These segmented inserts were designed to remove thinner-hard coatings from concrete while smoothing surfaces. For over 20 years, Dyma-Serts were the premier grinding accessory, spawning several low-quality copycats and patent infringement attempts.
EDCO Strip-Serts were created to satisfy a new need for thicker-soft coating removal. Examples of these are glue, flaking paint, adhesives, or any soft covering that requires scraping. While Dyma-Serts grind into surfaces, Strip-Serts were designed to ride on top, using a carbide block to slice through soft coatings.
Armed with Dyma-Serts, Strip-Serts, and other tools, EDCO grinders became extremely versatile pieces of surface preparation equipment.
1995: Better Safety & Production
To offer better dust prevention, the unique "Multi-Vac Port" was incorporated into all EDCO grinders. This port accepts both 2-inch and 3-inch vacuum hoses, expanding vacuum options. Other EDCO Grinder improvements during this time included, ergonomic handlebars, additional power options, and wet grinding capability.
2012: BIG Changes
It was time to update the 2-Disc Grinder. After soliciting customer feedback, EDCO learned the #1 request was eliminating the Wooden Wedge System. While wedges worked for 50+ years, this system now struggled with current tooling and new applications.
Eliminating the wedge proved to be the most dramatic change in the grinder’s history. A new slide-on tooling system was incorporated onto the grinding discs. Instead of hammering a wooden wedge into the disc, the new trapezoid shaped tools simply glide into place.
While Dyma-Serts and Strip-Serts were modified for the slide-on system, EDCO also debuted sleeker and more versatile tooling; including Dyma-Dots and PCDs. Variations in the heights of these new tools meant the grinders needed a leveling component. EDCO created a handle-controlled system allowing users to quickly switch from one tool to another. Level grinding proved to be more productive while prolonging tooling life.
Other machine upgrades included an adjustable dust shroud for added safety, side-mounted weight trays for production grinding, ergonomic design for operator comfort, and easier preventive maintenance.
2013: Grind Wedge-Less Launch
EDCO launched the “Grind Wedge-Less” campaign in early 2013. Customers warmly received the Wedge-Less grinders and the new tooling. The new grinder style proved to be the future, prompting two important decisions: 1) to expand the slide-on concept to all EDCO Floor Grinders and Turbo Grinders, 2) end the manufacturing of Wooden Wedge grinders.
After some time at market EDCO identified that customers needed a simpler way of identifying new applications and opportunities renting Wedge-Less Grinders.
To create consistency and simplicity in approaching surface preparation tasks and rentals, EDCO created Magna-Trap Systems, an umbrella representing all EDCO Grinders. Magna-Trap is not a rebranding; it is a new era in concrete grinding surface preparation equipment and tooling specifically designed for the rental industry.
With the combined capabilities of MT Grinders and the 4-Core Magna-Trap Tools (Magna-Blades Dyma-Dots, Dyma-Segs, and Dyma-PCD) this system solves virtually every concrete grinder surface preparation application. Magna-Trap made surface preparation equipment easy to operate and extremely profitable for rental businesses.
Slide through the interactive pictures below to watch the evolution of EDCO grinders:
Past: The very first EDCO 2-Disc Floor Grinder model. This lone grinder was originally built just to satisfy the demand of Rental Tool & Equipment‘s local customers. The demand proved to be worldwide.
Present: Like the 1950s Grinder, the current 2-Disc Floor Grinder is long lasting and solves many surface preparation issues. This edition is more productive, easy-to-operate and is part of the EDCO Magna-Trap® family of grinders.
Past: A 1960’s photo shoot with an early edition EDCO grinder. Notice the lack of safety equipment wore.
Present: A present day photo used in several EDCO ads. Today’s surface preparation workforce uses eye, air and ear protection.
Past: Vintage EDCO Grinder shown on a concrete slab. Adding weight helps the machine grind. Customers used to pile sandbags onto the machine for extra weight.
Present: Current EDCO Magna-Trap® Grinder shown on a concrete slab. Current grinders have built-in weight trays for added weight, making the machine more productive.
Past: EDCO’s 1st logo appearing on the front of the grinder. Before everyone learned about silicosis and other lung diseases, surface prep machines did not come with dust suppression guards around grinding discs.
Present: EDCO’s current logo and the Magna-Trap® brand logo. All EDCO products come with dust suppression shrouds and vacuum ports. EDCO vacuum systems eliminate 99% of harmful airborne dust.
Past: Completed Grinder inside EDCO’s first manufacturing headquarters in Sliver Spring, MD. Founder Leo Swan jokingly compares manufacturing there as, “like working in a blacksmith’s shop.”
Present: Completed Magna-Trap® Grinder inside the testing area of EDCO’s current manufacturing headquarters in Frederick, MD. This high-tech facility is where all EDCO “Stayed In America” products are made.
Past: 1970’s EDCO Grinder smoothing concrete with grinding stones. Old grinding accessories were limited in applications and impacted the surface unevenly.
Present: 2016 EDCO Magna-Trap® Grinder removing waterproof membrane with PCD Tooling. Current EDCO grinding tools are versatile, solving lots of applications. The unique Magna-Trap® leveling system lets tooling evenly impact the surface for high production.
Past: EDCO gasoline grinder resurfacing a parking lot. Grinders produce high volumes of dust. Before dust prevention was invented, grinder operators were forced to clean up debri after resurfacing.
Present: EDCO Magna-Trap® gasoline grinder resurfacing a parking lot. Proper dust suppression systems, like the pictured EDCO Vac-200, captures most surface dust created by grinding, drastically reducing job site cleanup times.
For almost 60 years, EDCO Grinders have been ideal for all kinds of surface preparation tasks including smoothing, cleaning, coating removal and leveling concrete surfaces.