All posts by Jenn Cantrell

Tribal Manufacturing Names Mark Duford as National Sales Manager

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Tribal Manufacturing is pleased to announce the recent hire of Mark Duford as national sales manager for its Direct Product Division.

Mark brings over 25 years of manufacturing experience to Tribal, coming to the team after serving five years as Northeast regional sales manager for BrassCraft Manufacturing. Prior to BrassCraft, Mark developed strong professional relationships in his leadership roles at Rinnai America Corporation and American Standard Brands.

With his vast experience in the plumbing and HVAC market, Mark has developed a keen understanding of the industry trends that have affected his customers’ businesses. From the ever-shrinking labor pool to industry-wide consolidations of manufacturers, wholesalers and reps, Mark uses his deep knowledge to help improve the bottom line for his customers.

Mark’s passion for this industry is deeply rooted in his respect for the American men and women that design, engineer and build high quality products, a skill that’s been underappreciated over the years as inferior overseas products have crept into the American residential and commercial markets.

He’s a champion of American manufacturing and what that means to our local and national economies, and he believes that American manufacturers like Tribal can produce quality yet affordable parts for wholesalers, contractors and plumbers.

Building trust and delivering value to his customers are the two pillars of his sales philosophy, and he’s looking forward to building new relationships with reps and wholesalers in the coming years as Tribal expands its direct products to new markets.

A Detroit native, Mark is a long-time Red Wings fan. When he’s not at work, he enjoys going to hockey games, concerts and spending time with his family.

About Tribal Manufacturing

Tribal Manufacturing is a privately-held, ISO 9001-2015-certified American manufacturing company with production facilities in Marshall, Michigan and Chesnee, South Carolina. With over 250 employees, Tribal innovates, engineers and manufactures quality straight and directional-machined parts for residential, industrial, municipal and commercial uses.

Each year, Tribal machines millions of pounds of ECO BRASS, 360 Brass and 27450 as well as steel components into a full line of flare, compression, nipples and accessories for the rough plumbing, HVAC, gas and oil industries. 

Tribal holds multiple patents along with numerous certifications and approvals with NSF, UL and CSA. For more information, visit, The Tribal Blog or connect on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Top 4 Reasons to Become a Part of the Tribe

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At Tribal, we know you have a choice in vendors and manufacturers. We’re confident that a relationship with Tribal can enhance and build your business, and here are four reasons why we can make that bold claim.

  1. Custom Manufacturing

Tribal’s diverse mix of equipment ensures that if you can dream it, we can make it happen. Our experienced machinists work daily creating complex parts with tight tolerances in a variety of metal options including low lead, standard brass, bronze and aluminum among others.

With seven registered patents and more pending, our innovative engineers work hand-in-hand with customers to bring your ideas to life. Because of our vast experience in machining, stamping, injection molding, bending, forming, assembling and testing, we have a 360 understanding of all manufacturing processes to help meet business your needs.

  1. Commitment to our Customers

Years of experience in this industry have taught us that while quality is important, understanding and exceeding the needs of your customer is paramount. When you become a part of the tribe, you can rest assure that our team of experienced engineers, machinists and staff will help you through the entire process, from idea to design to shipment. Each one of our customers has unique challenges and goals, and we work with you to develop a customized, cost –effective solution for your company.

  1. ECO Brass Expertise

Not all brass is created equal. In order to protect your parts and fittings from dezincification, it is crucial that brass alloys have the right percentage of zinc and copper. ECO Brass eliminates the worry of future problems because it’s been engineered to eliminate stress corrosion cracking and zinc leaching typical of less well-designed brass materials. Further, lead-free pipes ensure safe potable water for your customers.

  1. Support to an American Company

At Tribal, “Made in America” is more than a brand slogan—it’s a way of doing business. At the end of day, we know that our business helps support local economies that invest in American schools, infrastructures and future generations. American companies are:

  • Better for the environment. Less shipping means fewer pollutants in our air and waterways.
  • Making America stronger in the global economy and less dependent on foreign nations.
  • Committed to providing fair wages and safe work environments for their employees. You know that your product didn’t support child or unethical labor practices.
  • Keeping your dollars in the American economy, which supports the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP). In 1960, the U.S. GDP represented 40% of global GDP. By 2014, that rate had been slashed in half.

Ready to join the Tribe? Give us a call today at 269-781-3901 or email us at for more information.

Why the NSF Symbol Matters to Your Drinking Water

By | Water safety | No Comments

Safe water. It’s a commodity many Americans take for granted, but unless you’re in the plumbing or construction industry, most of us have never seen or given a second thought to the hidden pipes and parts that effortlessly deliver it into our homes and businesses—we just turn on the tap and—Voila!—sparkling, clear water.

But for those of us who manufacture, sell or install rough plumbing parts and piping, providing safe methods and products for potable water delivery is an essential part of our business model—one we at Tribal take very seriously. That’s why, if you look through our catalog, you’ll see a small, blue symbol affixed to all of our potable-water parts.

That small symbol signifies an important distinction— 3rd-party certified, contaminate-free products—and one we definitely don’t take for granted. This short article breaks down this symbol—what it means in relation to our products, why it’s important for you and your customers, and why we take the extra certification measure. When you see this NSF International symbol next to our parts, you can have peace of mind that you’re buying safe, quality parts that won’t introduce harmful lead or other impurities into your clients’ drinking water. In addition to our many other industry certifications, such as ISO 9001-2015, we take great pride in exceeding industry safety and quality standards. At Tribal, quality and safety is non-negotiable.

What does NSF International stand for?

NSF stands for National Sanitation Foundation International.

What is NSF International?

National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) International is an independent, not-for-profit, non-governmental, American product testing, inspection and certification organization based in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

When was it established?

NSF was founded in 1944 at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health and became NSF International in 1990 when the National Sanitation Foundation and the National Sanitation Foundation Testing Laboratory merged.

Why was it established?

NSF was created to standardize food safety and sanitation requirements. Its three founders—Walter Snyder and Henry Vaughn, professors, and Nathan Sinai, a health department official—recognized the lack of national sanitation standards in the US.[1]

What are the steps to NSF certification?

While certification varies depending on product, each certification generally includes the following seven steps:

  1. Application and information submission
  2. Product evaluation
  3. Product testing in lab
  4. Manufacturing facility inspection, product confirmation and product sampling
  5. Test results review and acceptance
  6. Contract signed and products listed
  7. Annual plant inspection and retesting[2]

What are the maximum contaminant level goals (MCLGs) for lead in potable water?

Because of its high toxicity, especially to fetuses, young children and infants, the EPA determined that even low levels of lead exposure have been linked to damage to the central and peripheral nervous system, learning disabilities, shorter stature, impaired hearing and impaired formation and function of blood cells. The January 2014 Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) mandates that the maximum allowable lead content (content considered lead-free) should be a weighted average of .25 percent calculated across the wetted surface of pipes, pipe fittings, plumbing fittings and fixtures in addition to .2 percent for solder and flux. [3]

What does the NSF International symbol mean for my customers and me?

Peace of mind. The NSF International symbol ensures that your clients are purchasing and installing products that have been rigorously tested, lead-free, safe and have met all NSF International standards. At Tribal, we don’t sell anything we don’t feel comfortable using with our own families.

Want more information about our products or the NSF certification symbol? Give us a call at 269-781-3901 or email us at For more NSF certified parts, download our latest product catalog.




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