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In 1963, a remarkable new saw and new chain initiated the modern era of lightweight, high-speed, direct-drive chain saws.
The saw was the Homelite XL12, and the chain was Oregon 72D, the first 3/8" pitch chain specifically built for such a saw.
The first Cox Chipper Chain was produced and sold in November, 1947. John was 28 and a recent graduate of the Harvard University Graduate School of Business.
The basic design of Joe's original chain is still widely used today and represents one of the biggest influences in the history of timber harvesting. First, the company moved from Joe's basement into a bigger facility (a 5,000-square-foot garage). When John joined the company, his original office chair was a nail keg.
Today, guard links are usually associated with safety and kickback reduction.
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In spite of the humble beginnings, John said, "I like the challenge of being in on the ground floor of something so exciting with so much obvious potential." Eventually, John would see the business grow from 0 thousand to 0 million. The company became a multinational corporation in 1952 by acquiring Planer Chain Ltd. In 1953, Joe sold the company to John Gray and vigorous growth continued.
The company moved into its first bona fide plant in 1955, a 65,000-square-foot facility in Portland that later served as the administration building.
After a period of use, pulpwood producers observed an unexpected benefit--fewer chain saw accidents.
A number of these companies mandated the use of the new chain.