Touring Boyce, New York’s most innovative advanced manufacturer

November 4, 2016
boyce-technologies-futureworks-nyc

Tucked away in the manufacturing hub of Long Island City is Boyce Technologies, New York City’s most dynamic company. With back-to-back rankings on the Inc 5000 list, Boyce is good as building products as it is at turning down buyout offers. Founded in 2007, Boyce is riding 905% growth over the past three years, generates $29M in yearly revenue and is #6 on Inc’s list for national manufacturers. Their success is one of the reasons Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand paid a visit during her recent Manufacturing Communities Act tour.

Boyce’s rise is well known in New York’s manufacturing community. They won city contracts to build not just subway Help Points but the entire infrastructure to initiate, connect and monitor underground-to-above-ground communications. Up next is a mission to bring reliable high-speed internet to Amtrak’s East Coast trains.

While the story is increasingly well-known, the Boyce advanced manufacturing headquarters aren’t. We joined Founder Charles Boyce and Head of Business Development Tom Powell for a tour of Boyce’s assembly lab, machine shop and the new 100,000 square-foot integrated facility that launches in 2017.

Boyce’s Assembly Lab

boyce-futureworks-nyc-12Commuters use Subway Help Points 22,000 times per day to request information, report problems and ask for help. 

boyce-futureworks-nyc-11The Help Point packages include custom-made tools so that MTA employees can assemble them without power tools. It’s like IKEA for industrial design.

boyce-futureworks-nyc-7Old-school green wire on the left. New-school green wire on the right. The difference is that the new-school wire is coated in silicon so that the wires can bend and re-bend and re-bend and re-bend without falling apart. 

boyce-futureworks-nyc-4Mariah Boyce gives the information systems cabinet and controller a quality-control test. The cabinet swings open to save space and provides full access for MTA employees in case there’s a problem.

boyce-futureworks-nyc-13Boyce is also working with Dog Parker, a Next Top Makers alum and New Lab resident, to build smart dog houses that’ll live outside cafes, restaurants and grocery stores. 

Boyce’s Machine Shop

boyce-futureworks-nyc-18Equally adept at producing electronics as they are at manufacturing metal, Boyce uses a Flow waterjet and 5-axis Hurco CNC mills. Here’s the frame of the Dog Parker.

boyce-futureworks-nyc-20Flow Research was founded by former Boeing scientists and is based in the US. Their waterjet uses digital designs and can cut through seven inches of metal. 

boyce-futureworks-nyc-22Indianapolis-based Hurco’s 5-axis CNC mills are fully automated machines that spin and flip parts and then use a robotic hand to replace drills bits depending on the hole-size needed. They interface with AutoCAD. 

boyce-futureworks-nyc-25There are plenty of bits to choose from. 

boyce-futureworks-nyc-23A peek into the past. Boyce keeps legacy machines on-hand to create custom tools and parts used by the team for assembly.

boyce-futureworks-nyc-28Tom Powell, left, with two members of the 100-person Boyce team. 

Boyce’s New Home

boyce-futureworks-nyc-33Down the street in Long Island City, Carmine, left, and Frank look over plans for the corporate and visitor sections of the new Boyce facility. The advanced manufacturing factory will have an open kitchen-style row of windows so visitors can take a look at the machine and assembly work going on inside. 

boyce-futureworks-nyc-31Charles Boyce, left, takes us through what will be Boyce’s R&D lab within the advanced manufacturing facility. The company will have one of each machine here to test new ideas and prototype products. The extra machinery is a significant investment, but Boyce considers it an essential strategy and smarter than disrupting production in the big house. 

boyce-futureworks-nyc-30Inside the new assembly lab, less than 24 hours after the concrete poured. As part of the upcoming move, Boyce had to overhaul this building from 1916. 

boyce-futureworks-nyc-34The future mezzanine has views of Manhattan. Always building!

Futureworks heads to Boyce from Imagination in Space on Vimeo.