by Howard Harrast, Howard
Supply Company, Inc. has been serving
the metal finishing industry since 1982. Howard Harrast and his son,
Michael Harrast, share
over a century of experience in the metal
Howard Supply currently serves a five-state
territory in the Midwest with regard to proprietary
cleaner and brightener sales and service:
Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan and Ohio.
Their service area is ever-expanding to
neighboring states. Let Howard Supply be
your #1 source for acid salts, aluminum
deoxidizers, aluminum etches, brightener systems,
burnishing compounds, electro cleaners,
galvanizing cleaners, iron phosphates, paint
strippers, rust inhibitors, sealers, spray booth
grease, soak cleaners and spray wash cleaners.
Are you in the
market to purchase used plating and/or industrial
equipment? Check out Howard Supply's
user-friendly, industry-leading Equipment
Page. Look for the form at the bottom of
each equipment listing to email us for more
information about that particular item. If
you're selling used equipment, please contact us via
Email to provide information and photos of
your equipment for sale.
experience in the metal finishing industry is
second-to-none. At age 16, he began his
plating career as a plater's helper at Hub Plating
Works (Broadview IL 1943), where he quickly
caught the plating bug. Here was his
introduction to nickel, chrome and zinc plating.
In preparation for WWII, everything
military-related was dipped in olive drab
following cadmium or zinc plate.
his military service, Howard returned to Hub to
plate tubular furniture. One automatic
plating machine at Hub contained a 26,000-gallon
nickel tank and a 6,000-gallon chrome tank -- the
biggest he has ever worked with.
got some valuable gold, silver, cobalt and zinc
plating experience at the US Naval Ordinance Plant
(Forest Park, IL). The US Naval Ordinance
Plant (Amertorp) began operations in 1942 and met
armament needs for the nation through three wars.
Thousands of torpedoes for the sinking of enemy
ships were manufactured here until 1971.
Howard was responsible for plating torpedo bodies
cadmium and torpedo drive screens silver cobalt
alloy to exact military specifications. It
was important that neither smoke nor steam were
produced as a result of a torpedo body traveling
Howard spearheaded a new plating facility layout
for Reflector Hardware (Melrose Park, IL).
Finishes were copper, nickel, chrome, brass, zinc
and cadmium. He was the metal finishing
supervisor for three departments: plating,
polishing and lacquer.
last inside plating job was at Decorative Products
which manufactured picture frames and decorative
items. He supervised all plating and
lacquering operations. Finishes were nickel,
bright brass, gold and silver.
up for Howard was a sales manager position at Time
Chemical, a supplier with whom he was familiar
because he had used their products for many years.
Eventually, Time got out of the metal finishing
business and moved their headquarters to Atlanta.
Since he wanted to stay in the Chicago area,
Howard decided to start his own chemical supply business in 1982.
Today, Howard Supply Company
Inc. remains a top industrial chemical and
addition to his devotion to Howard Supply, Howard
and his wife Cheryl keep busy dancing, boating,
golfing, skiing and keeping up with the grandkids.
They have built a reputation for winning ballroom
1989, Howard was joined by his son Mike.
Completing the Introductory Course in Electroplating the same
year, Mike has since gleaned a wealth of business
experience in the metal finishing industry.
Additionally, he has been responsible for the
design and expansion of the Used Equipment portion of this site,
enabling Howard Supply to become a top resource to
small businesses looking for high-quality low-cost
used plating and auxiliary equipment. Mike
has served two terms as a member
of the NASF
Chicago Branch board of directors.
Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio
(1982-1987), Mike received a gymnastics
scholarship and was a two-time Big Ten
member. After receiving a
BA in 1987, he was employed by
Richman Brothers clothing store in Columbus prior
to joining Howard.
the recent economic downturn, Mike remains
optimistic about the future of the metal
finishing/manufacturing industry in the US and the
future of Howard Supply.