Local 104 makes its mark on top-of-the-line marine deck equipment

We’ve got good craftsmen here who take extreme pride in their work. They’re a big part of us producing high-end, top quality equipment. We don’t have to worry about quality issues.

Robert LeCoque, executive vice president, Markey Machinery

Mark Felger, L-104, fires up a rosebud torch to make the 'Cadillac of winches' at Markey Machinery in Seattle.

CHANCES ARE, YOU’VE never heard of Markey Machinery—that is, unless you’ve been looking for the best-quality winch on the market. Markey’s has them. Boilermakers from Local 104 (Seattle) make them.

So, if you’re a tugboat operator, ship-assist vessel (or a vessel in need of assistance) or operating some other kind of vessel that hoists and hauls, Markey is what you want.

Markey Machinery was founded in 1907 in Seattle and has specialized in designing and manufacturing heavy-duty marine deck equipment ever since: tow winches for tugboats, hawser winches for ship assist and even winches for the U.S. oceanographic research fleet. The equipment is all built-to-order, customized and designed to meet specific customers’ individual needs.

“In our world in the marine industry, you know what Markey equipment represents: It’s the highest quality marine deck equipment you can buy,” says Robert LeCoque, executive vice president at Markey Machinery.

“We’re the Cadillac of winches,” adds Boilermaker Mark Felgar.

LeCoque credits the products’ reputation and company’s success to Markey’s crew of craftspeople—who take their trade and their work seriously.

“We’ve got good craftsmen here who take extreme pride in their work,” LeCoque says. “They’re a big part of us producing high-end, top quality equipment. We don’t have to worry about quality issues.”

Many are longtime Markey employees, and many are also multi-generational. And Boilermakers have been there since 1958.

“It’s like home here,” says Boilermaker Brandon Abbott. “I work with people who do the same thing I do. We all enjoy what we do, and we all want to do a good job. I like to work with my hands and be proud of what I do when I finish it.”

“I strive to be the most perfect welder I can be,” Felgar adds. “I want to be like a machine: perfect, steady, straight hand.”

That drive to perfection materializes in products customers trust, evidenced by a solid reputation and repeat business. And it materializes in products that make their makers swell with pride.

“You see that nice shiny barge floating by with the brand-new winch on top, and the big brass shiny Markey logo on it? I worked on that,” Abbott says. “That’s 130,000 pounds of steel, and I had a big part in that. It’s pretty cool.”

Adds LeRoque: “It’s exciting to drive up the Alaska Way Viaduct and look out on the Elliott Bay. And there’s a tug assisting a vessel and you see the line up to the ship, and that’s our winch that it’s tied to. It’s an exciting feeling to see our product out there working.”