National Jet Company was founded by John Cupler in 1937. He worked at a local fiber plant and came up with a better way to make the drills and drill the small holes that the company needed for the manufacturing of their spinnerettes. He set up shop in Cumberland, Maryland. As National Jet Company grew, the company expanded into many different methods for making small holes, including EDM, wire EDM, swiss turning, and more.
In the late 50’s National Jet Company was featured on the popular game show “I’ve Got a Secret” with Gary Moore. Mr. Cupler appeared on the show and the “secret’’ was that he had drilled a hole thru Bess Myersons hair. To see the clip from this show, click here.
The story with the most history though, is of Mr. Cupler drilling a hole in a competitors drill. One day in the early 1960’s, Mr. Cupler received a package from a European competitor that showed off their latest drill, a drill that they claimed was the smallest in the world. Mr. Cupler inspected the drill, then took it to his shop and drilled a hole in the end of their drill! He sent it back to the competitor with a note that simply said “No it isn’t”. The story was eventually picked up by the Wall Street Journal and seems to be remembered by a lot of people. It is indeed a true story.
Drilling a human hair…
Above is a photograph of a human hair (approximately .003’’ diameter) through which National Jet Company has drilled a hole (.0012’’ diameter hole). National Jet Company produced the drilling machine, the drills, and the know how to do this work. Everything about this job was Made in the USA.