Tradition: It’s In Our DNA
LÄGLER, the mechanical engineering company, is known worldwide as the market leader for floor sanding machines. The famous HUMMEL® belt sander is just one milestone in the company’s 64-year history, but many other developments also have come out of the Swabian town of Frauenzimmern. From the mind of company founder Eugen Lägler straight to the factory, here is the story of how LÄGLER machinery earned its legendary status in the world of floor sanding.
Eugen Lägler started out his career as an apprentice with the German railroad repair shop. After WWII, he started working for a blacksmith in a small mechanic shop in Feuerbach, Germany, and simultaneously completed his master’s degree in mechanics. When Eugen Lägler and his wife Gerda founded their own company in 1956, no one could have imagined that the small business in his grandmother`s old house would one day become the top producer of floor sanders in the industry.
In the beginning, Eugen Lägler’s capital consisted solely of his knowledge, his manual skills, and his turning machine. He earned a modest living producing and manufacturing agricultural equipment for vineyards along with other odd jobs. A lucky coincidence and family connections introduced him to a parquet layer in Heilbronn who was trying to find a source for floor sanding equipment through a machine shop in Munich. This shop gave Eugen Lägler his first order to produce floor sanding equipment on a larger scale and was the true turning point for his company. After single-handedly producing the first 50 TORNADO machines via elaborate manual work, he had found his calling in life.
Rather than continuing to build other people’s designs, Eugen Lägler took matters into his own hands. After much trial and error, he presented his first in-house development in 1964 with the ELF 1 drum sanding machine. “ELF” stands for his initials and the town of Frauenzimmern where production was taking place. With the invention of the smaller ELF 2, the edge sanding machine ELF 3, and a V70 for finishing, LÄGLER had formed its first sanding machine program. Eugen then decided to set up his own sales network and build a production hall. At the same time, the German wood flooring market was experiencing a steep upswing, so the timing was perfect.
In 1969, Lägler became the first inventor to integrate belt sanding technology into a wood floor sanding machine: the first HUMMEL® with its characteristic hum was created (“Hummel” is the German word for bumblebee). In hardly any time at all, thousands of HUMMEL® machines were sold. With it and the Randmeister edge sander developed from the ELF 3, expansion into the European markets followed in the early 1970s, and in 1975 it was introduced to the USA and other international markets. Even with this massive expansion, Eugen Lägler was busy developing a whole range of other machines, depending on where he saw a need. These include the metal sanding machine “Büffel”, the “Bär”, a machine for sanding wooden panels and the “Flunder”, a sander and vacuum attachment devices for angle grinders. In 1984, Eugen Lägler presented his PROFIT drum sanding machine for the first time. He developed the first centrifugal sanding drum especially for this – an absolute novelty in floor sanding technology. The easy-to-use technology impressed professional parquet layers as well as the booming do-it-yourself professionals. In 1993 the three-disc sanding machine TRIO with sensor-monitored dust extraction was introduced; the first and only machine of its kind for hardwood flooring. Developed for intermediate finish and fine sanding, the TRIO produced the flattest floors possible and to this day has the lowest wood-dust emission on the market.
The Next Generation
In 2000, Eugen Lägler officially handed over the management of the company to his son, and he seamlessly continued his father’s work. The following year, the company presented their new edge and corner sanding machine, the FLIP®. The single-disc sanding machine SINGLE followed in 2003. With an aggressive milling plate and an additional weight, it rounds off the company’s machine range today. From subfloor prep to finishing wood floors, there’s a LÄGLER machine for the job. The largest construction project in the company’s history was completed in 2003. Lägler moved into a new building with a 6,000 sqm addition to its current facility, a spacious administration wing and a training center. Today, LÄGLER machines can be found on almost every continent and are used by thousands of flooring professionals.
From the beginning, quality has been our credo. Over 60 years later, it’s become our tradition: it’s in our DNA.