The History of Porter Cable Company

Porter Cable CompanyPorter-Cable is one of the leading American power tool companies since the 1900s in Syracuse, New York. Founded by R.E. Porter, G.G. Porter, and F.E. Cable, the company has grown much over the years. It has been known for its top-quality power tool products such as portable belt sander, porter cable battery, and a portable band saw. Porter Cable is a subsidiary of Stanley Black and Decker, Inc. (formerly named The Stanley Works).

Here is a brief summary of thePorter Cable company history:

This is the most essential year of how the company was started by the 3 abovementioned key founders. With only $2,300 on-hand as a starting investment for a jobbing machine, they opened a tool shop in their garage in New York.

Porter-Cable gave more importance to power tools, power tool battery, and acquired power lathe, a tool allowing cutting, drilling, sanding, or deformation of objects. Three years later, the company owned a plant in North Salina in Syracuse. This is somehow the start of a bigger project investment for the three.
Porter Cable Sander
The plant’s Chief Engineer Art Emmons played a vital role in the company’s innovation. Emmons invented Take-About Sander, a portable electric belt sander. Through Emmons’ invention, the company has decided to focus mainly on portable electric power tools and haven’t thought much about creating porter cable battery just yet.

Emmons had another invention- the helical-drive circular saw, a tool used for cutting materials such as wood, metal, or plastic. What’s more interesting about this tool is that it is not heavy and comes in handy. It can also be easily mounted to a machine. Until this day, this invention is widely used across the globe.Porter-Cable was sold to Rockwell International and demolished the Porter-Cable name. Rockwell also moved the company’s headquarters from New York to Jackson, Tennessee. What made it more unfortunate is that Rockwell created low-quality power tools. More problems started to arise because of reliability issues of the products. This has greatly affected the company’s image and pushed sales to go low.A large company, Pentair Inc., obtained Rockwell’s tool companies including Porter-Cable and Delta Machinery. What great joy it is to finally stop manufacturing low-end power tools. The company has regained its name Porter-Cable and the good image it has built since it was founded.
A new invention, the electric random orbital sander, was introduced to the public. The tool is ideal for sanding because it leaves no swirl marks on the surface. It is portable and convenient to use. On the same year, the company made expansions for retail production and tapped The Home Depot and Lowe’s.

The Smithsonian Institution made an exhibition for the power tools made by Porter-Cable.

Porter-Cable reinforced with Delta Machinery. With negotiations running smoothly, Delta Machinery moved its headquarters from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Tennessee. Meanwhile, Pentair Inc. also purchased DeVilbiss Air Power Company.

Porter Cable compressors
Porter-Cable has made other innovations by bringing air compressors, generators, and pressure washers to the market. They then expanded their products to power tool related accessories and porter cable battery.

Pentair Tools Group mainly consists of Porter-Cable, Delta Machinery, and DeVilbiss Air Power. This renowned power tool group was bought by Stanley Black and Decker. Porter-Cable’s headquarters location is still in Tennessee but, manufacturing of tools including the porter cable battery has been halted in the United States and are now produced in China and Mexico.
Tracing the history of a big company such as Porter-Cable can be overwhelming yet informative. For long years, Porter-Cable has made it through ups and downs of the company. Truly, a company’s success cannot be achieved without experiencing failures and frustrations. Because of Porter-Cable, consumers now enjoy handy and easy-to-use power tool battery like porter cable battery and other tools for electric and machinery needs. In fact, it is now one of the most trusted power tool and porter cable battery suppliers. People should be thankful for countless inventions by great people throughout the years.

I am Caio Resende, Welcome to Power Tool Lab! It is a blog dedicated to all polular power tool and accessories including new, best for sale, expert reviews and guides. Whether you are a DIYer, Hobbyist, or professional contractors such as electricians and plumbers, I will provide you all the latest news and professional reviews for all your favorite tools and Brands. Our mission provides great perspective from many different end users.


  1. I read through your blog post here. Could you help me with a question I have please. What is the best type of sander for sanding a deck? I’m working on the deck at my parents house this summer and it needs to be sanded and restained. Thanks in advance for your answer. :]

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