The California Amforge Corporation Legacy

The California Amforge plant was originally operated by Jumbo Steel. It was purchased in 1952 by American Brake Shoe Corporation, and was converted to make railroad hardware and pre-form forgings for a number of other commercial applications, to complement its large forging operations in Chicago. In the early 1960's, Arthur G. Tichenor purchased the entire Amforge division from American Brake Shoe. After the Chicago plants were sold in 1971, the Azusa plant became the sole manufacturing facility of California Amforge Corporation, although corporate headquarters remained in Chicago.

The growth of California Amforge during its years of ownership by the Tichenor family reflects the vision and entrepreneurial spirit of Art Tichenor. The acquisition in the 1980's of a significant portion of the Smith International forging operation almost doubled the size and capability of the California Amforge plant. Major equipment additions followed, most recently with the installation of a 5500 metric ton mechanical forging press in 2003. Continuous development of technical expertise, including the addition of CNC and DCC-CMM equipment as well as forging simulation software, has kept pace with the equipment expansion, and allows the Company to excel in forging complex engineered shapes using demanding materials that meet the exacting requirements of aerospace applications.

Art Tichenor, who celebrated his 100th birthday in 2013, served as Chairman of the Company until he was almost 90 years old and still maintains an avid interest as Chairman Emeritus. Operating responsibility was transferred in 2002 to his daughter, Susan Tichenor Congalton, who is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

The continuity of Tichenor family ownership is matched by the extraordinary number of employees who have been with the Company for all or most of their working lives. Of its approximately 125 current employees, 27 have more than 25 years of service with the Company.

As a conservatively managed, privately held, Small Woman-Owned Business, the Company is unique among its competition because its size and operating philosophy fosters constant employee interaction and commitment to customer service.

Aerial Photo of the plant

Aerial view of California Amforge Facility


First Forging Made in Azusa Plant

First plant forging

Arthur G. Tichenor

Photo of Arthur G. Tichenor

Amforge Division of Brake Shoe Corporation, August 20th, 1952

American Brake Shoe Company