In 1978, NW Etch was established as Northwest Chemical Milling Company in Renton, Washington by Carl Whinery. He moved the company to Auburn, Washington in the early ‘80s and occupied two different locations during that time period. As the company matured, it became known for its willingness to undertake projects that were considered ‘impossible’ and ‘theoretically’ outside the scope of photo chemical machining capabilities.
During those early years, NW Etch was recognized by Rockwell International for its participation in the NASA manned spacecraft program with an Exceptional Company Performance Award in 1989. In 1990, the decision was made to move the operation to Tacoma. With the purchase of a 22,400-square-foot building, the company demonstrated its concern for the environment by building the industry’s first waste water ion exchange recycling system. The system allowed the company to maintain a closed loop system where no discharge of waste water is made from the plant into the local municipal system. In 2005, Carl Whinery chose to retire and promoted long time Controller, John Dooley, to General Manager. John and Carl agreed on a buy-out plan over the next few months and John became the new owner of NW Etch in 2006.
Custom Metal Parts Manufacturing
Today NW Etch is a thriving company employing more than 45 employees, delivering products to 26 states and 10 foreign countries on five continents. With the capability of being able to laminate, image and etch thin metal product utilizing a 60″ etcher, NW Etch continues to occupy a unique place in the photo chemical machining market. In addition to the large etcher, an on-site 1/8 mil resolution laser plots produce high-quality tooling used to manufacture custom metal parts for our customers.