Space Commerce

Rapid Growth in Enterprise and Consumer Antenna Segments Driving Major Expansion of Winegard Facilities

By Marc Boucher
Press Release
March 12, 2014
Filed under ,

Citing increasing demand for its enterprise and consumer antenna products, Winegard is expanding its engineering design and test labs, manufacturing, warehousing and administrative office space to nearly 410,000 square feet with the addition of a new 195,000-square-foot facility located just north of its current Burlington, Iowa facility.
The manufacturing and warehousing addition is complete and operations there are fully functional. The engineering and administrative building is expected to be completed by early summer.

The North Factory expansion houses two high speed automatic placement and reflow lines for electronic circuit boards, an injection mold room that includes five injection mold machines and the capability to add an additional 1,000 ton mold unit. It also includes stamping and various types of metal fabrication equipment, as well as all the assembly and test cells for the associated antenna product lines.

At the South Factory fabrication of parabolic reflector antennas, brackets and mounts to support Ku, Ka and wireless product lines will continue. On the manufacturing floor sits an impressive two-story tall 800-ton auto-fed and transfer stamping press with dual rolling bolsters. Two other 400-ton stamping presses with enhanced quick die change capabilities that cut, shape and form a multitude of antennas, mounts and brackets. A number of smaller presses operate across the factories to bend and punch out mounts, brackets and other miscellaneous antenna components. E-coat and powder coat processes also are accomplished in-house to achieve the final finish for Winegard’s customers. Current overall manufacturing capacity surpasses 600,000 antennas per month.

“Winegard’s vertically integrated lean approach to product development and manufacturing brings many processes in-house to not only keep costs and lead times low, but to maintain a tight control on quality,” said Winegard President Jon Manley. “One clear advantage is we are able to adapt to change more quickly than most of our competitors. Using DFx (Design for Manufacturing, Test & Serviceability) principles, each product is designed with manufacturability and serviceability in mind. All antennas are put through rigorous quality testing to meet demand specifications developed by Winegard, our clients and/or the industry.”

Design, testing and antenna manufacturing functions are led by teams of experienced engineers in the fields of antenna, mechanical, electrical, software, integration, packaging and manufacturing to produce new products that meet the unique needs and expectations of each customer. The company adheres to lean design and manufacturing principles, incorporating constant and continuous improvement and reduction of waste. The effort is led by a number of Six Sigma green and black belts staffed throughout the entire organization.

Winegard also maintains an extensive portfolio of antenna testing and measurement capabilities. These include indoor and outdoor VHF and UHF antenna ranges, an indoor Nearfield Systems Inc. (NSI) near-field scanner and, starting mid-2014, a state-of-the-art NSI indoor compact range with spherical near-field scanner valued at over 2 million dollars. These facilities will allow Winegard engineers to quickly and accurately characterize antennas from 50 MHz to 50 GHz in-house without the delays and expense of contracting with outside antenna ranges. It is estimated design and development time will be reduced by as much as 50 percent with the new test capability.

Winegard has a longstanding history of antenna innovation. The company has designed, tested and manufactured more than 1,000 types of antennas over the past 60 years. Products range from consumer television antennas and mobile satellite TV antennas designed for recreational vehicles, trucks, tailgating and marine markets to commercial satellite antennas or commercial grade VSAT antenna systems for the oil and gas industry and emergency response.

Armed with an impressive vertically integrated manufacturing facility that spans over 410,000-square-foot and houses a state-of-the-art antenna testing lab, Winegard is once again setting the benchmark for antenna manufacturers worldwide.

About Winegard

Winegard Company is a respected world leader in the design and manufacture of innovative antenna products for satellite and terrestrial communications. Since its founding in 1954, Winegard’s pioneering solutions have shaped the industry for home, recreational vehicle (RV), truck, marine, medical and automotive antennas. The company’s 2-way VSAT antennas provide real-time broadband solutions for extreme and remote environments in support of the oil and gas industries, as well as military and emergency response teams. Winegard is a privately-owned company that designed the first residential multi-channel TV antenna for the U.S. It has designed more than 1,000 antenna models and does custom antenna design and development work. To learn more about Burlington, Iowa-based Winegard, visit or call 800-288-8094.

SpaceRef co-founder, entrepreneur, writer, podcaster, nature lover and deep thinker.