Celebrating 60 Years of Excellence with Wood's Powr-Grip

Howard Wood and his wife, Beth, break ground, laying the foundation for Wood's Powr-Grip's enduring legacy.

Wood’s Powr-Grip (WPG), the top U.S. manufacturer of tools and equipment for handling glass and other materials, is marking its 60th year in business in 2024.

The company was incorporated in 1964 by Howard Wood. At the time, the Navy veteran had owned and operated an engine repair shop in Wolf Point, MT, for more than 15 years. Howard’s affinity for mechanical problem-solving sparked his first invention: a tool that held motor valves in place during checking and refitting. This “lapping” tool used vacuum in a way that revolutionized auto engine repairing. More importantly, it pointed Howard toward his next invention: The handheld vacuum cup for handling glass. The popularity of the hand cup, as well as the valve grinder, quickly led to the founding of WPG.

In the 60 years since, WPG has innovated and introduced many new products while making continuous improvements to existing ones. Along with Powr-Grip hand cups, WPG’s powerful below-the-hook vacuum lifters have become essential equipment for many businesses that handle glass, insulated metal panels, stone slabs, and more.

Through a network of authorized dealers, WPG sells its lifting products and optional equipment both nationally and internationally. These products, as well as WPG’s customer service, consistently earn acclaim from industry experts and professionals alike. The hand cup is so iconic that many glaziers simply refer to it a “Wood’s cup.”

Currently, a third generation of Wood family members has been leading the company through a period of robust growth: Bryan Wood, President and CEO; Barry Wood, VP of Marketing and Sales; and Brad Wood, Production Manager.

“I’m extremely humbled thinking back to the hard work and sacrifices of our parents and grandparents, who were so determined to make glass handling safer and easier,” said Bryan Wood, President and CEO.

“It’s a passion that’s created many long-term friendships in our industry these past 60 years. It inspires us today to provide the type of customer service you would want a friend to have. It also motivates us to continue innovating, so that every one of those friends can safely provide all of us with our windows to the world.”
WPG plans to celebrate the milestone with employees, dealers, and customers throughout 2024 — all while looking forward to another 60 years of innovation.

Barry, Bryan, and Brad Wood break ground for the 2015 production floor expansion.


1946: Howard Wood opens Wood’s Auto Electric, an automotive, electric, and small engine repair shop in Wolf Point, Montana.

Early 1960s: Howard designs and builds the first Wood’s Powr-Grip Valve Grinder to hold small engine valves during the lapping process.

1963: Howard begins manufacturing suction cups for glass handling.

1964: Howard incorporates the business as Wood's Powr-Grip.

1966 (March): Howard obtains a patent for his vacuum cup design.

Late 1960s: Howard develops and patents a battery-powered, sealed-foam vacuum lifter for use with overhead cranes and hoists.

1970: Keith Wood moves to Wolf Point to assist his father, Howard, with the growing business.

1974: Faye Wood, Keith’s wife, joins the company, furthering and strengthening the family's passion and dedication to the business.

1978: Bryan, Brad, and Barry, the three sons of Keith and Faye, begin their tenure with the company

1983 (January 28): Howard Wood passes away at the age of 73.

1990: Keith and Faye Wood move the company from Wolf Point to a larger facility in Laurel, Montana.

2001: Wood's Powr-Grip expands its production facility by 15,000 square feet, enhancing manufacturing capabilities.

2002: Keith and Faye Wood retire, marking a transition in leadership to their three sons.

2003: The fourth generation enters the workforce at WPG, continuing the family legacy.

2015: Wood's Powr-Grip expands its production facility, incorporating an extra 17,500 square feet of space to accommodate growing demand and enhance manufacturing capabilities.

2017: Wood's Powr-Grip unveils Intelli-Grip, featuring computer-aided controls and safety monitoring for vacuum lifting operations. This innovation optimizes efficiency, enhances safety, and simplifies maintenance, setting new standards for the industry.

2022 (July): Wood’s Powr-Grip acquires AEGIS Tools International, Inc., enhancing its presence in the automotive glass arena with expertise in windshield repair kits and tools.

2022 (November): Keith Wood passes away, leaving behind a legacy of creativity and dedication to the company.

Present (2024): Wood's Powr-Grip continues to manufacture hand-held vacuum cups and below-the-hook lifters for handling glass, stone, IMP’s and metal, with a commitment to supplying safe, quality products.