Affolder Service and Sales new service building under construction

Authored by Jim Langham on May 25, 2012

Construction has begun on the new large parts warehouse and service shop at Affolder Services and Sales, Inc., located on U.S. 27 South on the south edge of Berne. Owner Greg Milholland said with a sigh of relief that following a lot of paperwork exchanges with the state, things are finally moving, and should be completed in mid-September, in time for the upcoming harvest season.
The new facility will incorporate a total of 15,800 square feet, compared to 9,600 to the previous facility, which was destroyed by fire early last winter.
"This is going to be like going from a 1969 automobile to a 2012 automobile," said Milholland. "It is going to be much taller, will incorporate 20-foot high doors and will have an overhead crane that will go from one end to the other.
"It will have state-of-the art hookups for computer service which should be first class," continued Milholland. "They are putting the footers down now; hopefully, next week the steel structure can go up."
Milholland praised the local community for its support during the difficult times since the fire. He noted that Moser Motor Sales has given Affolder several bays to do repair work and Ned Liechty and Ted Liechty have given an exceptional area to work in their farm repair shot.
Still, there have been major inconveniences. Many things that would normally have been repaired in the shop have been repaired in the field instead.
"At times, it has been pretty tough to get things done efficiently," commented Miholland.
Milholland had said at the time that the fire, which destroyed the entire service garage, had caused over $ 1 million in damage. In addition, there were six tractors and six Bobcats in that facility that were being worked on at the time.
It was in 1928 when Edwin Affolder became the first dealer of Allis Chalmer equipment in the state of Indiana. At the time, Affolder was a local hay dealer and also sold workmen's compensation to businesses in the area.
"In his life-time, Ed worked for A.J. Moser as a plumber, farmed 280 acres, and started custom thrashing," states the Adams County History Book of 1979. "He was one of the first to use gas instead of steam for this operation. Two brothers, Elmer and Tillman, with Ed, operated three sand pits at one time."
The history states that Affolder relocated his business four times before finally settling on the current location along U.S. 27 south.
"The vote before the planning commission last week was just a formality," noted Milholland. "They have been so supportive; the whole community has stood behind us. After it is completed, there will still be a lot of things to do to get it up and operational.
"I feel really good where we are now," continued Milholland. "We are on the downside; things are coming together. I am real happy. A lot of questions have been answered about how we are going to do things."

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