Quality, that performs - since 1872

The history of the family business

In 1872 Hermann Sprenger founded a factory for horse and harness fittings in Iserlohn. In the course of the years the production range was supplemented with boat fittings and dog sport articles. Today the Herm. Sprenger Metallwarenfabrik GmbH Co. KG is a worldwide operating family business with 170 employees, which is already successfully managed in the fourth generation. But we do not rest on our 140 years of experience: We are anxious to optimise our products and to develop innovative solutions for equestrian-, dog- and boat sports, with which our customers can continue to be successful in the future.

 

1872 - 1949

Ore is a material that only gains value through artful processing. In Iserlohn this knowledge has always been used and forged. Already in the Middle Ages the armoured wire shirts of this city were known in half of Europe. 800 years later it was the spurs of the company Hermann Sprenger that were popular from Bosnia to Paris, from Vienna to Warsaw. So our story begins with spurs.

 

1872

Hermann Sprenger founded the "factory business" Herm in the Luisenstraße of Iserlohn. Sprenger.

He was engaged in the distribution of spurs, so that he sold the forged blanks on to Julius Ruck & Sohn, Westig, at a profit. The spurs were ground in the Wilutzki grinding plant in Iserlohn. This type of split production, further processing and storage on different properties led to all kinds of difficulties. A lot of goods were lost and one day the grinding plant burned to the ground.

1887

the ground sank in the Luisenstraße. The underground mining of ores was noticeable in the Iserlohn earth crust. First it crackled in the beams, then walls collapsed. The Sprenger company moved. First to Hagener Straße and later again. Alexanderstraße 18-19 was the name of the new address, which is still the location of the company today.

 

 

A boiler house for the steam engine and a smithy for spurs and horse bits were built on the ground floor. On the 1st floor there were the factoria (plant management), filing room and the "Cornptoir". The later built boiler house was the drive source for the whole production. A coke-heated "locomobile" generated high-pressure steam, which was transported to the steam engine in the factory building at a height of approx. 3 m by pipe. A large disc wheel was driven by the steam engine. Herewith all larger devices and machines were driven in the 3 floors over transmissions. Thus also the fast running leather drive belts for the rolling mill and the galvanic plant as well as the lathe in the locksmith's works, which were on constant movement, ran all together with a rapid running speed, which could be regulated only by dangerous switching off and on of the transmissions.

 

Long iron bars were used for forging, which were heated in coal fires. The heat of the forge fire was conveyed to the white embers with the help of a bellows operated with the foot. The glowing rods of 17-30 mm thickness were beaten under the drop hammer between the halves of the forging die, e.g. to form a bit or spurs. The drop hammer was pulled up with a leather strap to the roof of the smithy, to then let it down with a loud roar to form the glowing iron. Already after 2-3 strokes the iron bar cooled down, so that repeated annealing became necessary, until the shaped piece was available in the raw state. The shaped pieces were punched out under a spindle press and then ground, polished and covered with a protective nickel coating.

The grinders were always thirsty and sang a lot, including to the tune:

"We are the singers from the dark forest, We are the singers from Herm. Sprenger.

We're grinding spurs for the fatherland, and if you're dressing up with spurs, it's got to be original Sprenger spurs."

1899

In 1899 the new office building was built, which was even more finely expressed as "Comptoir" or Kontor. The new office and warehouse building had three floors plus cellar and floor, as well as an elevator with manual operation for the transport of goods.

 

1915

his son Alfred Sprenger took over the company as sole owner. Hermann Sprenger retired after 43 years of activity.

The factory building was extended to the south in the direction of Weidenstraße. In order to reduce the noise nuisance caused by the steam-driven drop hammers, a separate drop forge was planned to the east, independent of the previous building foundation. They were used intensively during the First World War and formed the backbone of the temporary "armaments factory" during this time. Other forged parts were also manufactured here until 1920. Between the world wars, the drop forging plant was shut down.

1918

In addition to snaffles, curbs and spurs, many other buckles made of wire and cast iron belonged to the manufacturing programme. Alfred Sprenger had already offered and sold a wide range of merchandise. The trade kept the company afloat, while there was often trouble with its own production. A patent was applied for for a "hand washing case for motorists". The contents consisted of a water tank with outside tap, soap, towel and nail brush.

 

1919

the company Herm. Sprenger supplied saddleries and canteens of the "100,000-man army" and the police with spurs, stirrups, snaffles, curbs, horse harness buckles and buckles of all kinds. But most of the turnover came from merchandise. This included all articles bought in the canteens of soldiers and officials: Combs, scissors, soap and soap dishes, nail brushes, clothes brushes, pocket knives, shoe polish, shoe polish boxes, sewing clothes, etc.

1922

The post-war years demanded a change. Long-standing foreign customers were eliminated. Motorisation displaced cavalry. The production programme had to be adapted to the new times. Cactus stands and car wash cases were supposed to bridge the situation. Sprenger even developed a hair dresser. Weft forks and weft rakes for weaving mills were taken into production. Suitcase and folder locks were also among the new items.

But despite many efforts, not all employees could always be kept. The times were bad. Of all the new articles, only one area proved to be capable of development and promising: the manufacture of boat fittings. It has been maintained to this day and has helped the company to new success.

In the factory, the old transmissions and machines were now running at full speed again.

1928

According to the operating report of the South Westphalian Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Hagen, Sprenger successfully produced spurs, stirrups, bits, car fittings, military equipment, snap hooks, dog sports equipment, bridle buckles, belt buckles, belt fittings, suitcase locks and all kinds of mass-produced items.

Sprenger employed 76 workers at the time, 48 of whom were workers and 12 were employees.

1932

Sales to Wehrmacht canteens after the rearmament increased the sale of merchandise many times over. Alfred Sprenger also bought a press which was connected to the existing transmission to produce side windows for cable drums. In this way the soldiers were able to lay telecommunication cables and power cables on foot at that time.

 

1939

It was not until the Second World War that the drop forge was put back into operation. Now weapons and ammunition parts were beaten here.

 

1942

After Alfred Sprenger's death his two sons took over the business. Herbert Alfred Sprenger was responsible for the technical management and Reinhard Sprenger took over the commercial management.

 

The company was transformed into a limited partnership. Original spurs from Sprenger, stamped with the famous company logo "Anchor and Snake" had a worldwide reputation.

However, the further development of the company was uncertain for the time being. This was not only due to the lack of coal production, which resulted in a shortage of electricity and iron, but also to the completely unclear currency conditions for deliveries already made to friendly foreign countries.

 

1944

On the basis of a company audit, a decommissioning notice for the entire Sprenger plant was issued on 26 February. This decision was due to the fact that the drop forge was shut down on the day of the inspection as a result of a repair. Incidentally, the operation was completely outdated and inorganically structured. The working methods were inefficient and partly too manual. After lengthy negotiations, it was achieved that the drop forge could continue unchanged and the production of spurs could continue.

In the last three months there have been serious changes in the production possibilities. Air raids destroyed transport routes, mines and rolling mills. As a result, only very small quantities of coal and coke came in and even these were sluggish. More by chance, two wagons of 17 mm round bars were delivered, while no other material came in. In the own company the work suffered by the many air raid alarms, which decreased only in the last days of March. The power allocation was also reduced to 50% of the previous values. Gas was not available since the end of February. Only for the trading business some goods came in from nearby suppliers.

The manufactured goods, in particular harness and rope fittings, spurs and many other urgent items could not be delivered because every shipment was paralysed. However, it was still possible to sell some goods at the place, especially military articles, canteen goods, etc.

The trading business continued to decline as raw material supplies became increasingly scarce. A manufacturing instruction had been issued for the manufacture of tableware fittings with Wehrmacht order number for urgent completion.

The order backlog had not changed. Occasionally, the relatively extensive production of spurs was subject to a company audit. It was therefore intended to include the production of currently urgently used snaffles in the infantry armament program instead.

Reinhard Sprenger's objection to the decommissioning decision has not yet been answered. However, three further operational audits were carried out. The company was left in the dark about the results of their consultations.

The trading business had also continued to decline, as the number of incoming goods was steadily decreasing. Efforts to secure urgent trade orders were successful only in isolated cases.

1945

There was no longer enough coal or coke to continue production. They were using slurry coal. That was wet coal dust, which was "spooned" more liquid than solid with the coal shovel into the furnace.

On 13 March, airplane damage was caused by a bomb that fell on the Reichsbahn track diagonally opposite the office building at a distance of about 30 m, as well as by gunfire from enemy low-flying aircraft. In addition to most of the windows in the factory and in the office building, the skylight roofs above the press works and scrubbing works as well as the roof of the drop forge were damaged. Most of this damage was repaired by the company's own forces, which unfortunately caused the plant to shut down completely for four days.

There were now only minimal coke and coal reserves left. The power supply should be stopped completely in the next days. As a result, there was no possibility to continue working. In the factory, a tool fitter was busy manufacturing tools, while other permanent staff was cleaning up, carrying out machine repairs and changes that had been due for a long time. As a result of the urgent production of war-important products, they had not taken place.

Due to the escalation of circumstances, Sprenger's business operations had already been discontinued on April 13, 1945. A resumption of production was dependent on a permit from the Military Government Office, which only granted a few permits for urgent production. The relevant priority list also included fittings for agriculture, so that the manufacture of tableware fittings formed the basis for a requested production permit to resume production.

A corresponding application was made as soon as possible, but the permit was not to be expected due to the quantities of coal required for the production of electricity.

Now the intention was to produce household objects such as frying pans, coal shovels etc.. In addition, the production of ashtrays in the form of spurs was tackled, which seemed interesting because the soldiers of the victorious powers were in great demand for them as souvenirs of defeated Germany.

In the last few months, the production of tableware fittings was still on a larger scale. Leatherware fittings had to be manufactured for trading businesses. More and more customers were visited, who showed great interest for all stocks, so that considerable sales could be made from stock.

A new manufacturing goal was attempted through the production of household articles.

Around September 1945, the British occupation granted the so-called "Small Permit". The company was now officially allowed to manufacture and trade. The last catalogue from 1938/15 served as the basis for the sale, which also contained some dog sports articles. The small stocks were soon sold.

Despite the efforts of the British occupying army to obtain direct orders, Sprenger did not yet obtain a production permit for the requested "Great Permit", but small items, such as aluminium ashtrays, were made by hand. In the commercial business Sprenger received larger orders for leather goods fittings as well as steel goods and other articles. The financial situation had improved because some of the goods originally produced for the Wehrmacht had been disposed of elsewhere.

In cooperation with the company ROTI (Ober-Ing. Rohrmann und Ing. Tillmann) the intention was to produce electrical appliances such as waffle irons and cooking utensils, but the project failed first because of the unsecured procurement of the necessary accessories and because of the power limitation measures by the military government.

In the drop forge, bridles were again produced regularly. In September a gas furnace for gravity die casting arrived. It was to be used to produce aluminium mane combs and other light metal chill casting articles.

1947

In the spring we received iron purchase certificates. This facilitated the procurement of material and hardware, but was increasingly "compensated", i.e. the goods "normally" invoiced, but a further amount went additionally "black" over the table, or we received food in exchange, which was distributed among the staff. Some customers gave away products they had manufactured as "give-away": Suitcases, briefcases or purses. These were passed on to the suppliers in order to obtain new raw materials.

The unrestricted production permit finally arrived on 3.1.1947. As a result, the first allocation of coal took place in February. This was of great importance because the winter was extremely cold and long. In addition, there was a complete power cut for any kind of electricity for about 4 weeks. During this time only assembly work could be carried out.

In the middle of June the production of wooden sandals was started. The necessary machines, in particular a band saw, were manufactured in our own factory.
The turnover in manufacturing goods had still improved, which was also due to the well developing sandal production. However, there were great difficulties due to the lack of manpower and suitable wood. The procurement of a production permit did not seem to be necessary yet, as no further production permits were issued at present due to a lack of material.

The company Herm. Sprenger made wooden sandals for ladies and gentlemen and advertised this footwear with leaflets. Anyone who wanted to have a pair of sandals had to deliver leather suitable for the upper material of the sandals, such as old leather from briefcases.

The production time was about 14 days after delivery of the leather to the plant management. This sandal production only succeeded because most of the wood required for the soles was supplied from the sawmill of Mr Dürr, Herbert Sprenger's father-in-law. This production did not yield much profit. After all, it gave the entire company the temporarily missing orders.

For the first time it was also possible to produce small cast buckles for which there was a special demand. Small quantities of brass harness fittings could also be produced; however, the production of German Silver harness fittings failed due to the lack of material.

In the long run, the production of horse harness fittings in the previous form did not promise full utilisation of the business. It was intended to produce further fittings for the leather goods industry themselves.

1948

The fairs in Hanover and Leipzig were visited in the spring to examine the possibilities in export and interzone business. The sandals continued to be popular "exchange items".

From 21 June 1948, the day of the currency reform, everything changed.

Until then, when customers came to ask for goods, "the suppliers were now running us in". Already after 14 days no one asked for iron purchase certificates. The coveted new German Mark regulated the movement of goods. We introduced a stock register, as the stockists' notifications of need often came too late, sometimes even when nothing was left in stock. With the currency reform the production of wooden sandals was given up.

In September, the incoming production material improved. In particular, it was possible to buy brass and nickel silver for the production of horse harness fittings.

The arrears in the delivery of dressage collars were unbearable, which were bought from the company Wilh. Naumann in Iserlohn. In order to better meet the demand, the idea was born to manufacture these articles themselves. The company set up a production system for dressage collars made of 3 mm wire.

1949

The company manufactured and traded with the motto: Everything for the dog! There were hardly any more horses and of course only a few riders. Corresponding orders were received, but it was not easy to fulfill all wishes. Straight, rounded wire pieces for three different link sizes were required at the ends. One bent these wire pieces into links in four to five working steps each, an expensive and difficult process, but one could fulfill soon all desires of the dog owners. The modernisation of the factory facilities was now the main goal of the management. Iron will, the courage to take risks and the personal thrift of the owners made further acquisitions possible for the factory and its modernisation. Soon a powerful electric motor could be used to drive the transmissions instead of the steam power. After many years of detailed work, all machines were gradually equipped with electric motors until the beginning of 1949.

Herbert Sprenger was able to obtain some very positive orders on his travels to the USA. Customers ordered large quantities of chains of various lengths and equipment. Reinhard Sprenger, in particular, received large orders for equestrian and dog sports on his travels through France.

The exhibition at the Leipzig Spring Fair was well received by customers. As part of a special agreement for the Leipzig Trade Fair, official business with the Eastern Zone was conducted for the first time.

Sales to the East Zone and Berlin only got off to a negligible start. In Berlin the financial circumstances of the customers were very weak, so that sales could only be made with great caution. On the other hand, due to the low price of the Ostmark, it was now possible to buy the folder locks that had previously been purchased from the eastern zone by detour via Berlin. Our company was thus in a position to undercut the West German manufacturers.

1950 - 1967

1950

The end of the 1940s brought Germany its first economic rise. The word "economic miracle" was used. Those who worked hard also needed leisure. Another magic word of the 50s becomes the term: hobby.

At Sprenger the trend was recognised early on and the company reacted: Articles for dog sport and care.

Then one day a big shock came for the sale to America. The company from which the chains were welded and bundled offered similar chains processed, nickel-plated and chrome-plated in the USA at prices at which we sold the raw chains.

We then had to look for ways to get cheaper chains. Herbert Sprenger brought an electric welding machine into operation. This machine could be easily adjusted to different welding thicknesses and welding times. The electric welding of rings succeeded quickly. Individual chain links could also be welded.

The turnover with dog chains became better and better. Particularly the newly created attachment chains, and especially the 2.0 mm thickness, became a real hit. We started with the production of dog leash snap hooks. For several years malleable cast iron served as the basic material, which was purchased from foundries in the Solingen area. Finally, the key factories in Solingen supplied more accurate castings that were easier to process. The disadvantage, however, was the greater brittleness of this material. During use, the handle parts often broke off at the front. Therefore, attempts were made to emboss the dog leash snap hooks from wire.

Again and again, efforts were made to order articles that would be of more significant and lasting importance. Thus Herbert Sprenger succeeded in obtaining an order for the electrification of the railway. It was cramps made of Kuprodur that held the overhead power line of the railway in place. An unusual accuracy was required. This could only be achieved by several operations. Bit by bit "gauges" were used for measuring. The Kuprodur material had to be bought from the same company that already produced these cramps. This company also took the finished goods and delivered them to the Bundesbahn.

1951

Herm. Sprenger exhibited at the Frankfurt trade fair. There Mr. Arthur L. Rosenei, head of Reliance Intern. Pet Supply from New York discovered our company. Mr. Rosenei was impressed and ordered larger quantities. Even today, Reliance Intern. Pet Supply is customer with us.

The order for knot chains justified the purchase of the first and only knot chain machine. It was designed for wire thicknesses of 1.4 to 1.8 mm and could be put into operation without any problems in the second quarter.

In the summer, the first tests were carried out for the production of metal dog combs, both for dog care and for the worsted yarn industry. A pensioner from the Bavarian Forest, who had manufactured such combs in a Thuringian factory until the end of the war, explained to us soldering and the trick of how to prevent the liquid solder from bonding with the metal back when dipping in. We ourselves had already bought these combs there before.

1952

The produced nickel-plated brass combs were too expensive. A cheaper solution had to be found. We wanted to manufacture the needles ourselves. The idea of rounding both wire ends was right, but the first attempts were disappointing. Most of the needles came bent out of the barrel. After all, it was enough to make several hundred combs, which could be shown as samples at the Frankfurt trade fair. The iron combs rusted easily and there were complaints. Then the management heard about an Aschaffenburg paper factory producing rust protection paper. The paper was coated on one side. This layer evaporated very gradually, and what it released into the surrounding air prevented rusting.

 

 

1953

Demand from abroad for HS products was increasingly strong.

In spring, a new, larger bright nickel bath was installed in the galvanic unit. Another chrome bath was added. As a result, the old transmissions were gradually dismantled. Presses and machines were individually driven by electric motors. Towards the end of the year, AEG supplied the first electric welding machine for rings of assembly chains.

1954

The limited space on the 2nd floor of the production building meant that the old grinding facilities had to be demolished; the new grinding blocks required considerably less space. As a result, chain assembly continued to expand. Herbert Sprenger, always looking for something new, developed a double chain.

 

1955

Since the chain suppliers of Herm. Sprenger increased prices by 25 %, the management decided to manufacture all chains themselves. The walls of the scrubbing works and the galvanic were pulled up to the 2nd floor. Due to these structural changes, the galvanic department was expanded and clear rooms were created on the 2nd floor, which then made it possible to expand the chain production.

 

1956

There were two chain manufacturing machines for light and strong chains and two electric chain welding machines in an always locked special room. With this equipment, the great danger of dependence on suppliers for the company was overcome. The newly developed manufacturing process was not patented. They feared imitation with small changes. For years no other manufacturer of electrically welded dog chains has existed.

 

 

1958

The difficulties with the metal foundries, which had persisted for years, were alleviated by the addition of two more suppliers, which was particularly important because orders for boat fittings were received on a much larger scale than in previous years.

The many delivery difficulties in recent years were due to insufficient stocks. Now that the necessary stocks had been purchased, it turned out that there was a lack of space everywhere in the company and warehouse. The purchase of an automatic chrome plating system was also planned. However, it was not possible to increase the number of staff without further ado. There was not enough space left. Thus the decision matured to carry out a new extension building along the Weidenstraße.

Engravers in Lüdenscheid produced the first tools for dog leash snap hooks with a service life of 50-100,000 pieces. A spark erosion and professional surface grinding machine was also purchased.

Employment rose even more strongly in the third quarter. This was due not only to the extensive chain business, but also to larger buckle orders from the USA. The season for boat fittings was unchanged, and demand for equestrian products remained strong. A large number of new employees were hired, so that the number of workers and employees exceeded 100 for the first time. Space was very limited, especially in the packing room and shipping area. It was intended to build a hall in the garden between the locksmith's work and the drop forge and to extend the washrooms to the east following the drop forge.

1959

was characterised by a bull market for boat fittings. Although sufficient raw material and semi-finished goods were provided, not all customer wishes could be satisfied. Bottlenecks arose above all with the employment of workers, because the employment office could not offer any more employees due to the generally good employment situation. A strengthening of the workforce was also ruled out because the space in the factory was no longer sufficient. The problem of a new building became more and more urgent, so that the execution of the building took place after the scrubbing, three-storey and with a built-up area of about 900 square meters.

1960

In the meantime, customers knew that Sprenger now welded chains electrically. At first, suspicious buyers complained that the welding was not complete. Therefore, a device was constructed with which the chains could be torn and, at the same time, the tensile stress under which the breakage had occurred could be determined. The result was very satisfactory; the breaking strength of the electrically welded chains was always higher than that of the autogenously welded chains.

 

 

The purchase of further chain and welding machines was planned. The existing plant was working at full capacity and further skilled personnel was no longer as easy to find as before. As a result, a new automatic chrome plating system had to be built in the locksmith's work, in which the various basins and the actual chrome bath were arranged in a circle. In the middle there was a column with a rotating rim, from which spoke-shaped arms went to the individual basins, which accommodated the racks with the goods to be chrome plated. In a certain cycle the racks were led from basin to basin, immersed in each case, lifted out again, until the process was finished. The plant looked like a carousel, and so it was and still is called today. Above all, it was very practical. The paths from basin to basin were saved. One worker was enough to operate the plant.

 

In order to solve the transport problem in the factory, an electric goods lift was ordered.

Since the orders for dog chains from the USA declined slightly, the heavily cleared stocks could be replenished. In the summer, the chain business picked up with orders from Europe and the domestic market. But new difficulties arose. The foundries, above all the United Key Factories, delivered only sparsely. The foundries ran away with the moulders because they could earn more in construction or industry. Sprenger was certainly no longer able to accept orders for cast buckles and rings. All this was unsatisfactory and such a condition was not sustainable in the long term.

Herbert A. Sprenger therefore returned to his "old" idea of producing the snap hooks blanks under the press (cold forming). In the past, the first experiments with a double toggle press and a percussion press had already been carried out in the old feeding mill. For this purpose, wire sections were cut off under an eccentric press, inserted into an embossing tool, pressed and the burr removed with a cutting tool. At the time, these tests did not produce any final results. The hinge pins had not yet come out completely - but showed that it was feasible. At that time, there was still no shortage of very inexpensive raw castings. But soon the situation became precarious. The foundries had to increase wages in order to stop personnel fluctuation. Above all, however, there was a lack of raw materials. This threatened the existence of the dog sport business and even the entire company.

Now Sprenger was seriously converting to a new production. Engravers in Lüdenscheid received the order to produce the first tools with service lives for 50-100,000 pieces. Meanwhile, the toolmakers had to prepare the subsequent steps for sliders and swivel eyes, followed by the deburring tools.

Only in the second quarter did the production of the pressed snap hooks start. HS experienced that not every tool could withstand the intended service life. The toolmakers were working at full speed. To facilitate this, a spark erosion machine was ordered, which automatically incorporated the engravings into the tools. A new press with 160 t pressure had also been ordered for the snap hook production.

From the third quarter onwards, chain production worked in two shifts in order to meet the increased demand. Cast swivels for the dressage collars were also no longer available. They had to be bought in and manufactured on a welding machine specially set up for this purpose.

1963

The first 4301 stainless steel flat shackles were bought from Höcker. One year later these shackles were produced by machine at much better prices.

 

1964

Turnover in dog products increased to such an extent that chain and welding machines had to work in two shifts. Two new chain and welding machines were ordered, as well as a new wire bending machine with much higher capacity for the production of links for dressage collars. A new automatic surface grinding machine was also purchased for the tool making department.

The company Messmann became the biggest customer of all times. With the new brand name "Kessi" came the big success. The snap hooks, almost all chains and many accessories were bought from Sprenger.

 

1966

New articles made of stainless steel and plastic have been developed for boat fittings in recent weeks, which were presented at the boat show in Friedrichshafen in October. These were yacht blocks made of stainless steel 4301 with plastic rollers.

 

 

1967

The horse harness fittings went quite well. Complaints about the nickel plating of the German Silver fittings, which had been carried out for several years, became so frequent that the procedure had to be abandoned. This meant that the fittings were supplied in skin packaging, which provided extensive protection against tarnishing.

A stainless steel bridle and stirrup were introduced for equestrian articles. In boat fittings, the choice of stainless steel fittings increased considerably.

1971 - 1994

1971

The production of stainless steel hollow snaffles began and was patented. With the DGBM (Deutsche Gebrauchsmusteranmeldung) application of March 1971, Herbert Sprenger registered loose ring and eggbutt snaffles made of stainless steel, cut from wire and sleeves. But Japan and Taiwan copied this world novelty more cheaply.

The work preparation began to work with an Ormig machine. The Ormig machine printed the work plans and supplied the framework for the calculation.

1972

the year of its 100th anniversary

Almost every tournament rider knows the quality articles from Iserlohn. Yacht and boat fittings remain also a speciality of the house. Thanks to many years of experience, this branch has been constantly expanded. The sales curve rose steeply, especially due to articles made of stainless steel, which are preferred for the equipment of regatta boats because of their corrosion resistance and lightness.

So it is not surprising that Sprenger products are also included when it comes to Olympic medals in 1972. We supplied the riding fittings for the modern pentathlon and the fittings for the Finn boats.

However, the sector of dog sports articles and hooks of all kinds developed into the front-runner of Sprenger production. Almost four million metres of dog chains have been manufactured and delivered in recent years.

 

Further processing up to the packing station could only be carried out in two shifts. The electroplating shop was extended by three new nickel baths, a centrifuge and a rectifier. In addition, new polishing drums were installed in the intermediate hall built in the atrium of the Scheuerei. In order to expand the production facilities, another new building was started in October. Two floors were to be placed on top of the plant management and the last construction gap on Weidenstraße was to be closed with three storeys.

There were further increases in production, so that home workers were increasingly employed in the entire area.

1973

At the beginning of January, the new IBM/3 computer system was put into operation.

 

 

1974

Business with harness fittings was particularly good in Germany. Sales of stainless steel snaffles showed above-average growth.

Exports of boat fittings rose, with the biggest increase coming from piston hanks.

This year Sprenger had launched a new stirrup made of Zamak injection-moulded chrome-plated, which was so inexpensive that it was now competitive against all imports.

1976

For the production of bridle buckles from stainless steel wire, a Bieler wire bending machine with electric welding was purchased, with which other articles could also be produced.

The company Julius Huck & Sohn had decided to withdraw from the equestrian market. Sprenger took over the sale to their customers.

1978

The new high-rack warehouse was completed and started operating on 15 October. It is 40 metres long, 18 metres wide and 10 metres high. The shell provided space for three small parts stores, namely for 2,750 compartments, which can carry loads of up to 250 kg. The playing time of the order picking equipment is less than 60 seconds for outward and return transport per drawer.

 

1982

Klaus Rainer Sprenger and Peter have taken over the management of the company. Herbert A. Sprenger and Reinhard Sprenger resigned from their positions and were now only engaged in advisory activities.

Despite the general recession, which forced many companies to work short hours or even to give up, Sprenger's turnover had remained stable. There were only minor declines, which could be compensated by increases in other departments.

The new hame clips were registered for patent.

1983

In 1983 a rope brake was developed, which was successfully tested under the name "Diad Stop" (Dieter Adomeit, Berlin) at the Admirals Cup. This brake held the rope with normal force and could be released without much effort. The sailor could control the opening and closing of the brake. Furthermore the safety against unintentional opening and release of the rope was guaranteed. Sprenger introduced at short notice a complete surf program from the Dutch company Kubus, Naarden.

In addition, the "Nopp Bit" was developed, which caused the horse to play with the inlaid copper parts. This stimulated the salivation; the horse chewed better. This chewing was necessary to make the horse ridable. This is comparable to the "warming up" of an athlete.

In addition, a patent application was filed for the Merothic safety stirrup with a simple joint.

1987

In boat fittings, the new cam cleats with roller bearings were now to complement the 8 mm product portfolio.

Recently, fax transmission was used to speed up contact with customers and suppliers. The Miacs software was also introduced. It was a product planning and control system (PPS) from Honeywell Bull with inventory management, parts list management, standard costing and cost simulation, order requirements management, net requirements determination as well as work plan and production resource management.

Mr Reinhard Sprenger died on 4 June.

1988

The International Equestrian Corporation (IEC), which included Cottage (GB), Skan Horse (DK), Foxwood (USA), Cavallier (CAN), International Saddlery (AUS), Ukal (F), Ageco Weco (B), Zaldi (E), Tattini (I), and Jansen (NL), elected HS as a member. It was hoped that this would lead to improvements on the supplier and customer side.

 

1989

Sprenger got an order from the German Armed Forces for boat fittings.

 

1992

At Mets (Amsterdam) Sprenger presented a new Traveller with ball bearings.

In addition, the company Kannemeier & Koch in Langenhagen was bought and now exclusively and directly we sold the bits KK.

The new high-tech plastic cam cleat was well received by the boat builders Mader and Hein. The larger Traveller II was tested in Holland and was to be presented to German boat builders in October.

Sprenger conducted his 1st Western Seminar with 150 people. Mr. Risley, a Foxwood employee who builds western saddles, came from the USA for the demonstration.  Two tents were set up and four horses were used in the depot to demonstrate western saddles.

1993

The newly developed metal alloy Aurigan has been registered as a patent. After the expert opinion of Professor Dr. Happke and a toxicological expert opinion from the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover.

 

 

1994

Distribution of paints of the company International as one of 8 paint wholesalers.

At the Interzoo in Nuremberg, which takes place every 2 years in May, HS showed the new K-Collar, from the US licensor Klein as K-Collar, which was well received.

A modern rolling mill was set up. In addition to savings through shorter travel times, better working conditions were also expected. A new paper press was purchased.

1995 - today

1995

A riding seminar for 100 retailers was held at Sprenger in 1995. The main focus was on product training including western saddles and bridles, factory and warehouse tours.

New stainless steel hinges and downhauls were presented at the Mets (boat fittings trade fair).

At the Interzoo in Nuremberg, the protected Wings gag and the patented Curogan chain, which protects against discolouration of the dog fur, were presented as innovations.

1997

New cam cleats and micro blocks were shown successfully on the Hanseboot in Hamburg and on the Mets in Amsterdam.

1998

the System 4 stirrup with double joint was introduced. The stirrup has a movable tread which automatically moves the rider's heel to the desired low position. In addition, the rider can get out of the stirrup much more easily in the event of a fall.

1999

The Kannemeier & Koch bits were further developed into the new KK Ultra series. The anatomically adapted mouthpiece is particularly pleasant for the horse and promotes the thoroughness, since the rider can influence more sensitively.

2001

Conversion of the dance hall into a connecting hall between the packing room and the warehouse.

2002

Book publication " Leading with feeling ".

2005

Klaus Rainer Sprenger resigned from the management.

In addition, the Dynamic RS bits were included in the product portfolio. These bits can be the solution for horses with contact problems. Due to the ergonomic shape of the mouthpiece it lies very well in the mouth, gentle pressure is directed evenly onto the tongue and tongue edges and optimal chewing is promoted.

2006

Bow Balance is the name of the innovation in the Sprenger product catalogue. The BOW BALANCE stirrup combines several aspects that make for good and safe riding. The special balance as well as the curved shape in the upper part of the stirrup make it even more comfortable to hold on to the horse and make it easier to pick up. The proven System 4 joint can support the release of the foot during a fall.

2009

The patent pending Neck-Tech is the first stable and reliable alternative to the traditional training collar. By imitating the dog's canines, this chain collar exerts a natural influence on the dog.

2010

The research and development department of SPRENGER was asked to design its own stainless steel buckle. The patent-pending ClicLock offers advantages such as a stable stainless steel housing, a high-quality and seawater-resistant plastic part and a guaranteed breaking load of 200 kg. Other companies also use ClickLock in their products.

2012

Purchase of Alexanderstraße for additional parking spaces for employees.

2013

With the SENSOGAN® bit material, SPRENGER has succeeded in consistently further developing the Aurigan material mix. In the new alloy, the positive properties of Aurigan have been reinforced and even greater compatibility for the extremely sensitive horse's mouth has been achieved. The special feature lies in the balanced composition of copper, manganese and zinc. The amount of copper released in the horse's saliva is greatly reduced by manganese, whereby the noble white gold colour is also retained for much longer. Manganese is again an important trace element, which is important for the development of connective tissue as well as for muscle and energy metabolism and can have a positive effect on stress reduction. Manganese also breaks down histamine and can thus contribute to the prevention of allergic reactions.

2014

Introduction of the S-block series. The dimensionally stable stainless steel strap shows the type of bearing used and the maximum ropes strength at a glance.

2016

Martin Sprenger supports his father in the executive management.

2017

Our company has been cooperating with the "Iserlohner Werkstätten" for many years, so that this year a separate department was established in the company.

The Flexcite complements the Sprenger jointed stirrups product range in terms of product technology. The latest generation of stirrups is perfectly balanced for an optimal and safe thigh and foot position and has a shock-absorbing and gentle effect on joints, ligaments and menisci. The release of the foot is also facilitated in the event of a fall. The modern design makes the Flexcite stirrup in noble silver/black the top model of the stirrups.

However, not only our products are becoming more modern, but also our distribution. Since this year our customers can place their orders in the new B2B online shop.

In addition, the warehouse will be supplemented by new high-bay warehouses and a more modern and thus faster picking system.

In spite of all difficulties, Herm. Sprenger, with the diligence of its loyal staff and the great commitment of its shareholders, managed to become and remain a well-founded company. Even today, the company in the Alexanderstraße in Iserlohn still manufactures its products traditionally by hand.

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