DL Manufacturing is committed to improving safety and productivity on the loading dock with some of the most innovative products in the industry.

DL Manufacturing is a company that evaluates existing loading dock processes and procedures, then designs and manufactures innovative solutions to improve production, reduce maintenance and promote safety. We offer a complete loading dock package with patented designs, premium service, solution-based sales, and a “quality first” production team.


The Beginning of DL Manufacturing

DL Manufacturing incorporates in NY, with the invention of the Versa Light, in the basement of a house in Kirkville, NY. The product popularity grew quickly, due in large part to a commitment by a major Fortune 100 company to install these loading dock lights throughout its distribution centers. The first 160 units were built in that same basement!

The original corporate headquarters opened on Fly Road in Syracuse, NY with 4 employees and Don Metz as President.

First Move

DL Manufacturing moves its headquarters to Airways Park Drive in Syracuse, NY. After much research into the loading dock industry and its accident record, it was determined that most dock accidents happen due to the door being open while not in use and the drivers not being aware of the status. As a result, DL launches its second product, the patented Safety Signal. The company grows to 10 employees.

Smart Chock

In response to inconsistencies in hook arm restraints and ergonomic issues with rubber wheel chocks, DL’s engineering team developed and launched the revolutionary Smart Chock dock communication and wheel restraint system.

DL Manufacturing headquarters moves to Ridings Road in Syracuse, NY and adds 5 additional employees.

AeroTec Air Replacement System

The AeroTec Air Replacement System is launched. At the time, most other dock fans were placed within the dock door opening (where they could be easily hit and damaged by forklift traffic). Prompted by another Fortune 100 retailer, the DL team developed the AeroTec fan that could be mounted outside of the door opening with the capability to throw air farther into the trailer.

DL Enters the Sectional Door Market

DL Manufacturing enters the specialty, sectional door market with the launch of the MxV door, with its patented knock out design, using a brush-in-track system that can be simply reset when knocked out, without replacement parts or service call. The brush system also eliminates light and air gap concerns for grocery distribution centers and stores. DL tested this system extensively with a large national grocery chain.

DL Moves to Larger Headquarters

DL Manufacturing headquarters moves to Gateway Park Drive in North Syracuse, NY to a 30,000 square foot former medical device manufacturing facility. While the building was being renovated for loading dock equipment manufacturing, the company rented additional space in an adjacent building to assemble it’s newly launched MxV doors.

DL Expands Again

Due to the overwhelming market success of its doors, DL Manufacturing expands its Gateway Park headquarters by adding 14,000 square feet of additional manufacturing space. The company grows further to 25.

Continued Growth

Despite a worldwide economic recession, DL Manufacturing remained active in the loading dock and materials handling industry, participating in trade shows and market advertising of its popular products.

LED Versa Light Launch

Always innovating ahead of the market, DL Manufacturing launched the LED Versa Light to provide a more energy conscious option that still maintained an optimal color temperature instead of a harsh, bright light.

U-Seal Dock Seal Hits the Market

The U-Seal dock seal is launched to meet a high demand in the market for better truck sealing around the door opening, especially among cold storage grocery distributors. This product revolutionized the dock seal market for its non-compression, Z-pattern internal foam structure that forms around the trailer edges instead of simply compressing toward the building wall.

QxV Flexible Overhead Door

The QxV flexible overhead sectional door is launched, first for customers in grocery and retail stores with no forklift traffic who needed a flexible impact-able door, but not one that knocks out of the building. It is later picked up by larger distribution center customers using conveyor loading. Another product launched with minimal maintenance required and no complicated parts or service needed.

Founder Don Metz Announces Retirement

Founder Don Metz retires, Joe Markert becomes new President of DL Manufacturing.

A New Innovation in Dock Seals

The Dynamic Dock Seal is launched to meet a market need for better sealing of differing truck heights at the loading dock. After an industry building design shift from 8’ and 9’ tall dock doors to 10’ dock doors, sealing trucks became a tremendous challenge for the industry. Dynamic Dock Seal becomes a game changer for sealing all trucks at 10’ high doors.

Launch of the AeroTec AC

The AeroTec AC is launched at the leading edge of the demand for better conditions for employees in the loading dock area by mitigating excess heat in trailers. Companies can now retain employees by providing a more favoring work environment.

The Innovative Big Swirl Fan

The Big Swirl Fan is launched as a low foot-print, High Volume High Velocity alternative to HVLS fans in warehouses and other spaces that do not benefit from HVLS fans.

Continued Growth Leads to a Massive Expansion

DL again expands its Gateway Park manufacturing space by 14,000 square feet. It also adds a new conference and training space, along with several new offices and state of the art manufacturing equipment.

New Conference Space Dedicated to Founder Don Metz

DL dedicates its new conference space as the Don Metz Training Center for loading dock expertise. Today it has over 65 employees nationwide.

DL Manufacturing