Event: BMR Mustang Cruise-In & Tour

0  BMR Mustang Show & Tour Featured

Tour Date

The Mustang Club of Tampa visited BMR Suspension for a tour

By Steve Turner
Photos by Steve Turner and courtesy of BMR Suspension

You might not realize it, but there could be an aftermarket manufacturer operating near where you live. If you’ve only loved aftermarket upgrades, but never thought about how they were made, it’s worth taking a little time to see how a part is born. We’ve seen many operations, but for the Mustang Club of Tampa it came as a surprise the BMR Suspension was doing its thing in nearby Seffner, Florida.

Over 50 people and 40 cars from the Mustang Club of Tampa cruised to BMR Suspension in Seffner, Florida, to take a tour of the suspension manufacturer’s production facility. Of course, when a Mustang club has a cruise-in, the destination turns into a car show. Seen here (from left to right) are Lee Hinderliter’s 2011 GT; Ron Corgan’s 2008 Bullitt; Yandro Ulloa 1998 Cobra; Daryl Waterman’s 2010 Shelby GT500; and Ron and Vicki Wright’s 50th Anniversary 2015 GT.
Over 50 people and 40 cars from the Mustang Club of Tampa cruised to BMR Suspension in Seffner, Florida, to take a tour of the suspension manufacturer’s production facility. Of course, when a Mustang club has a cruise-in, the destination turns into a car show. Seen here (from left to right) are Lee Hinderliter’s 2011 GT; Ron Corgan’s 2008 Bullitt; Yandro Ulloa’s 1998 Cobra; Daryl Waterman’s 2010 Shelby GT500; and Ron and Vicki Wright’s 50th Anniversary 2015 GT.

As it turns out a freelance writer among the club’s circle alerted the club to their aftermarket neighbor, which prompted club officials to contact BMR about the possibility of a tour. It’s not something that happens often, as only a couple of Brand X clubs have paid a visit to the suspension company in the past.

“Normally it isn’t something we do, but in this instance we thought it might be a great opportunity to open the doors to our customers so they can see what goes into the parts we make,” Pete Epple, Marketing Tech at BMR Suspension explained. “We opened the event up to about 50 people and 40 cars and the club arrived in force! It was pretty impressive to watch the entire group pull in at once. We really weren’t expecting that.”

The club members brought out some really nice cars to BMR Suspension, and it’s hard to go wrong with a Dark Shadow Gray Terminator, especially one rocking a carbon-fiber hood and True Forged Chicanes.
The club members brought out some really nice cars to BMR Suspension, and it’s hard to go wrong with a Dark Shadow Gray Terminator, especially one rocking a carbon-fiber hood and True Forged Chicanes.

If you don’t live near the Tampa, Florida, area, you might not be familiar with this club, but apparently it is one of the more robust clubs on the MCA roster.

“We proudly rate as top 10 in the chapter of Mustang Club of America and are continuing to grow our membership. We have approximately 170 families as members within our club. A few are original founders and our members range in age from teenagers to retired individuals. Their cars range from 1964 ½ to 2015 and regardless of the decade, everyone shares the same enthusiasm about Mustangs,” Paul Strausbaugh, a member of the Mustang Club of Tampa board of directors, explained.

As a former owner of a Chrome Yellow 1998 Cobra, your scribe has a soft spot for these Four-Valve SVTs. Yandro Ulloa’s fetching example features paint-matched mirrors and polished, Saleen-style wheels.
As a former owner of a Chrome Yellow 1998 Cobra, your scribe has a soft spot for these Four-Valve SVTs. Yandro Ulloa’s fetching example features paint-matched mirrors and polished, Saleen-style wheels.

We had fun tagging along with the club. It’s easy to get jaded having seen manufacturing facilities big and small across the country. However, when one of the club members turned and said, “How often do you get to see something like this?” we were reminded how cool such an inside look really is. Apparently, the entire club enjoyed the visit just as much as he did.

“Everyone we spoke to really enjoyed it. Many in attendance took the opportunity to purchase some of BMR’s fine products. BMR has done an outstanding job making the company survive in tough economic times and is now successfully growing the company. We were very impressed with their formula to train and promote from within to develop their employees and create a succession plan to ensure they continue to provide the best product available,” Paul said. “It is obvious that Allan (Miller, BMR President) is an entrepreneur at heart, he has a keen eye and able to strategize through obstacles. The team is knowledgeable, passionate and proud of their company and the products they make. We were captivated with their on-site R&D that leads to the quality of their work.”

Likewise, your scribe can never overlook a Vapor Silver 2008 Shelby GT500. Carroll Shelby Wheels CS40 wheels, hood pins, and carbon-fiber mirror covers accent Robbie Polo’s ride.
Likewise, your author can never overlook a Vapor Silver 2008 Shelby GT500. Carroll Shelby Wheels’ CS40s, hood pins, and carbon-fiber mirror covers accent Robbie Polo’s ride.

With a crowd of potential customers on hand September 19, it was only natural that BMR offer a traditional show discount, and many of the attendees took advantage of the offer. The basics were most popular, but some club members were inspired to really step up.

“We sold a lot of lower control arms for S197 Mustangs. This is about what we expected as they are inexpensive and simple to install. There were a few people who bought enough parts to significantly change the handling characteristics of their car,” Pete added. “It was awesome to be able to sit down with people, discuss their car, help establish what their goals are, and get them the right parts to help get them there. It’s always a great day when people leave your place happy!”

Yes, a small cruise-in and car show combined with a tour of a thriving aftermarket facility is a great way to start a Saturday.

Fox coupe. Check. Cowl hood. Check. FR500-style wheels. Check. David Pierce’s green notch is a great example of how these cars are timeless.
Fox coupe. Check. Cowl hood. Check. FR500-style wheels. Check. David Pierce’s green notch is a great example of how these cars are timeless.
While the Mustang Club of Tampa got its start with the first-gen cars, today’s members own cars from past to present. One of the newer rides that made the trip to BMR was Mike Sackett’s Comp Orange 2015 Roush RS2.
While the Mustang Club of Tampa got its start with the first-gen cars, today’s members own cars from past to present. One of the newer rides that made the trip to BMR was Mike Sackett’s Comp Orange 2015 Roush RS2.
The club members took the tour in several groups, and we tagged along as BMR President Allan Miller showed off his facility. He started in the warehouse, which features shelves packed the gills with product that’s ready to ship. Allan says he bought BMR just as the recession started in 2008 and learned that having product in stock was the best way to keep a sale.
The club members took the tour in several groups, and we tagged along as BMR President Allan Miller showed off his facility. He started in the warehouse, which features shelves packed the gills with product that’s ready to ship. Allan says he bought BMR just as the recession started in 2008 and learned that having product in stock was the best way to retain sales.
Most of the BMR parts start as raw materials at this part of the factory. BMR manufactures most of its parts in-house. Only a few items like springs, bushings, rod ends, and ball joints are outsourced, but almost all of the gear is made in America.
Most of the BMR parts start as raw materials at this part of the factory. BMR manufactures most of its parts in-house. Only a few items like springs, bushings, rod ends, and ball joints are outsourced, but almost all of the gear is made in America.
After the tubing is cut and bent into the intend shape, the parts are tested for consistency in a jig before moving on to be welded.
After the tubing is cut and bent into the intended shape, the parts are tested for consistency in a jig before moving on to be welded.
BMR recently moved its plate forming operations in-house with this automate press, which helps produced consistent parts.
BMR recently moved its plate forming operations in-house with this automated press, which helps produced consistent parts.
Once all the pipes and plates for a particular part are built—some are send out to have holes laser-cut—they come together in the welding area, where BMR’s welders turn the pieces into products. Here you can see some of the company’s new S197 Watt’s Links are coming together.
Once all the pipes and plates for a particular part are built—some are sent out to have holes laser-cut—they come together in the welding area, where BMR’s welders turn the pieces into products. Here you can see some of the company’s new S197 Watt’s Links are coming together.
After the parts are welded together, they are cleaned in a blasting cabinet in preparation for powdercoating. BMR coats its products in-house in two signature colors—red and black hammertone. The latter is most popular among Mustang customers.
After the parts are welded together, they are cleaned in a blasting cabinet in preparation for powdercoating. BMR coats its products in-house in two signature colors—red and black hammertone. The latter is most popular among Mustang customers.
After the powdercoating, the BMR parts make a final stop for assembly and packaging before they are put into inventory.
After the powdercoating, the BMR parts make a final stop for assembly and packaging before they are put into inventory.
In order to develop products, BMR wants to have an in-house example on which to develop its gear. As you can see, they have the last two generations of Mustang covered pretty well.
In order to develop products, BMR wants to have an in-house example on which to develop its gear. As you can see, they have the last two generations of Mustang covered pretty well.

BMR Mustang Cruise-In Gallery

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