SKT Article February 2012

Charles Engineering, Inc., located in Clearwater, Kansas, opened its doors in 1984 to design and build automated equipment to meet the demand for custom engineered manufacturing systems. In 1986, Charles Engineering partnered with The Boeing Company (Boeing) to solve significant quality problems that Boeing was experiencing. Due to the success of that venture with Boeing, Charles Engineering expanded into a full-blown production facility and their customer base grew to include most major aerospace and commercial aircraft manufacturers worldwide. Today, Charles Engineering produces roll formed shapes for a wide range of aerospace and precision applications including jet engines, turbine generators, and structural components for most commercial aircraft. Most of the fuselage frame sections for the Boeing 777 and 737 are produced by Charles Engineering.

Charles Engineering has continued to expand throughout the years and their relationship with Boeing has strengthened. They are the exclusive supplier to Spirit and Boeing Wichita, as well as the preferred supplier for most major subcontractors of airframe and structural components. Jim Charles, President of Charles Engineering, does not expect things to slow down anytime soon. In 2011, they experienced a growth of 20 percent and they anticipate the same for 2012. To keep up with the demand, Charles Engineering has expanded their manufacturing facility by 50 percent to accommodate the increase in business and to bring critical processes inside. Jim is thrilled with the growth and the continued opportunities in commercial aviation. Lately, Jim and his team have focused their efforts on China since they are expected to build and buy more airplanes in the next 25 years than the rest of the world combined.

Since Charles Engineering has expanded world-wide, they rely heavily on SKT’s High-Speed Internet service to communicate with clients. Charles Engineering conducts approximately 95 percent of their business over the internet and it has become an essential resource for their continued success.

Charles Engineering has been presented with numerous awards including the Boeing Performance Excellence Award for three of the past four years, Boeing Small Business Supplier of the Year, Space Shuttle Recognition, and Administrator’s Award for Excellence. Jim credits his great team of employees. He feels privileged to work with such great people and feels very blessed to have had the opportunity to start and grow a business in Clearwater.

Charles Engineering Receives Silver Boeing Performance Excellence Award

Clearwater, KS Jan 3, 2012 – Charles Engineering, Inc. today announced that it has received a 2011 Boeing Performance Excellence Award. The Boeing Company issues the award annually to recognize suppliers who have achieved superior performance. Charles Engineering maintained a Silver composite performance rating for each month of the 12-month performance period, from Oct. 1, 2010, to Sept. 30, 2011. 

This year, Boeing recognized 529 suppliers who achieved either a Gold or Silver level Boeing Performance Excellence Award. Charles Engineering is one of only 407 suppliers to receive the Silver level of recognition. 

President Jim Charles commented, “We are delighted to have our efforts recognized. Being a long time supplier, our team continually strives to establish the highest levels of quality and service in our markets.” 

Charles Engineering supplies roll formed structural sections to Boeing and Boeing subcontractors around the world. The largest share of their production supports the 737 and 777 programs, both of which are scheduled for continued increases in build rates for the coming year. 

Having a history of designing processes and achieving manufacturing excellence, Charles Engineering has received recognition with the following past awards: 

  • 2010 Boeing Performance Excellence Award – Gold Level 

  • 2008 Boeing Performance Excellence Award – Gold Level 

  • Recognition by Grumman Aerospace for Space Shuttle wing stringer production 

  • 1997 Boeing Small Business Supplier of the Year 

  • Administrator’s Award for Excellence from the U.S. Small Business Administration 

The company has been supporting the aerospace industry since 1985 and has expanded operations to support program initiatives and a growing customer base in Europe and Asia. According to VP of Business Development, David Hutchinson, “Boeing’s commercial aviation programs appear to have solid growth potential for the next several years. We are blessed to be a part of Boeing’s success and are looking forward to the future.” 

For more information on the Boeing Performance Excellence Award, visit

Times Sentinel Progress Edition Article: Charles Engineering continues to grow, award-winning business plans for future

By Diana Sageser

Quality, delivery and performance are not just words used to describe how Charles Engineering conducts business – they are the company’s foundation. Since 1984 Charles Engineering has delivered an extraordinary variety of close-tolerance roll-formed parts to customers all over the world.

In 1986 the business partnered with Boeing to solve quality problems Boeing was having. The success of that venture led Charles Engineering to expand into a full-blown manufacturing facility and also resulted in the company being selected out of 20,000 small businesses as Boeing’s Small Business of the Year in 1997. The company has been awarded Boeing’s prestigious Performance Excellence Award three out of the past four years.

The Boeing partnership continues to thrive. Since 1995 Charles Engineering has been the exclusive supplier of roll formed parts to Boeing and Spirit AeroSystems in Wichita. Charles Engineering produces 2,200 Boeing P/N’s including most of the fuselage structural sections for the Boeing 777 and 737. Build rates on both of those models are scheduled to escalate over the next few years.

Charles Engineering expanded into a new facility in Clearwater in 1996. With the addition of dedicated warehousing and heat treat facilities in 1998 and additional dedicated warehouse space in 2005, Charles Engineering is able to offer expanded in-house processing and inventory capabilities. This dedication continues with a 50 percent expansion of manufacturing space completed in January 2012.

Boeing’s move out of Wichita is not anticipated to affect local production since the company’s customer base includes Airbus, Bombardier/Canadair, De Havilland, Gulf Stream, Hawker Beechcraft, Lockheed Martin and many more. Charles Engineering team members have lately focused efforts on China which is expected to build and buy more airplanes in the next 25 years than the rest of the world combined. The company also is looking to expand its non-aerospace business and currently enjoys a niche market in close tolerance parts for GE land-based turbine generators.

Charles Engineering is an active supporter of the Clearwater community through many programs including Focus on the Future, Clearwater Booster Club, Clearwater Community Foundation, Chamber of Commerce and the CHS Technology Committee. They donate the sound system equipment used for many local activities and support USD 264 programs such as the Electro Rally for electric cars, plays, the newspaper and many fund raisers. Charles Engineering is the financial sponsor for the CHS Young Entrepreneurs of Kansas program.

Charles Engineering is located at 10400 S. 119th Street West. For more information, visit their Website at