By Ashley Reyes
The Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) named Borgeson Universal Co. Inc. as the council’s latest member spotlight company. In this week’s feature, company vice president Alan Zordan shares the company’s breakthrough moment and current projects.
SEMA: Tell us the story of your shop. How did you start?
Alan Zordan: Borgeson started making ujoints in 1914. The current purchase of the business was in 1982, and soon after we started designing ujoints specifically for the street-rod market. We continued to grow and expand offerings from ujoints to vibration reducers and other linkage components. Over the years, we expanded through acquisition of Mullins Steering Gears, Vintage Chassis Works and the remainder of Saginaw Manual Steering Gear division.
SEMA: What was your breakthrough moment?
AZ: We decided to start producing complete power-steering conversions for many applications. This led to more conversions for more applications. We now sell a large range of power conversions, which goes right along with the continuing growth of ujoints and components.
SEMA: Tell us about your business now in 2022. What projects are you working on?
AZ: The outlook for 2022 looks very promising; the industry has been going strong. The hardest part is supply chain—everything from raw material to hardware is taking longer to get and requires constant planning. New products in the works will continue to expand our direct-fit steering shaft line.
SEMA: Tell us about a build you are proud of.
AZ: My best build is not about the car itself, but the time spent doing it. I built a ‘32 Roadster and my two children worked by me the whole project—from painting the chassis to installing the drivetrain. My teenage son pretty much wired the car himself. The car is not completely finished, but it is on the road. I let my kids take it whenever they ask. Seeing their smiles driving it—definitely the best build I’ve ever had.
SEMA: What advice do you have for young professionals contemplating a career in the automotive aftermarket?
AZ: Go for it! I grew up in this industry. I feel this is one of the greatest industries out there. The automotive aftermarket is a passion-driven industry; people do not have to modify their cars, they want to.
Fill out an HRIA-member spotlight form to highlight how your company is contributing to the hot-rod industry. Selected candidates are eligible to be featured on HRIA’s and media, SEMA eNews and future HRIA-member updates.