Horst Lach – 75 Years
Horst Lach was born on April 3rd, 1940 in Hanau. Hanau in earlier times was known as “the city of precious jewellery”.
Before the First World War about 10.000 diamond cutters worked in Hanau and the young Jakob Lach, the father of Horst Lach, in 1908 started to learn the trade of a diamond cutter and years later in 1922 founded his own diamond grindery with up to 600 employees.
The repercussion of World War II impacted the diamond cutting trade negatively. The jewellery diamond grindery was destroyed by the bombing attack on March 19, 1945. Secondly the contract grinding of diamonds in Germany lost its attractiveness for foreign buyers after the monetary reform and introduction of the DM.
In the fifties the father Jakob converted the business operation from brilliant jewellery grinding more and more to industrial diamond processing. Horst Lach, just 20 years old, joined the company on October 1, 1960 after his traineeship in Industrial Management. The path was now open for the start of the present LACH DIAMANT Tool Manufacturing.
From this point in time diamonds would determine the life of Horst Lach. It was different from the life of his father who dealt in natural diamond, but Horst Lach recognized the rich incomprehensible diversity of the synthetic diamond, which first became available for industrial applications in 1957.
Today the industry speaks appreciatively about Horst Lach as the pioneer of the diamond tool industry. e was also called already the “Hidden Champion”. Horst Lach delivered brilliant ideas and developments and was jointly responsible for the rethinking in the industry and tooling sector. No longer should the service life of tools and grinding wheels be calculated in hours but rather now in weeks and even months.
Following are some of the highlights which today have become indispensible in the automobile and accessory industry, in aircraft and wind power generator manufacturing, the electrical industry, machine building and tool manufacturing.
1966/67 – Development of first diamond grinding wheels for the efficient grinding of
1969 – Manufacturer of worldwide first Cubic Boron Nitride grinding wheels for
HSS tool grinding and high-alloyed hardened steel
1973 – Development of the first polycrystalline synthetic diamond tools (PCD) for
the machining of aluminium and non-ferrous metals
1974 – First PCD cutters for aluminium and plastics are introduced.
Further development reads like the „Who is who” in the German industry per se.
With the discovery of spark erosion for the economic forming of polycrystalline diamonds, synonymous with the invention of PCD milling/cutting tools he changed the thinking of the entire industry, namely furniture manufacturers, wood and composite material manufacturers as well as the automobile and accessory industry per se.
All of a sudden the up to now superiority to all other cutting agents, namely the PCD tool provided the prerequisites for the development of NC or today CNC and continuing computer technology.
Meantime the father’s property in Hanau, Bruchköbeler Landstrasse became too small for the planned expansion and in 1984 the move to the newly built complex in the Industrial Area Hanau North took place.
The success story continued in 1982 with the formation of LACH DIAMOND INC. in Grand Rapids/Michigan, USA. This company, as PCD manufacturer serves as a self-sufficient company the American and Canadian market.
After reunification of Germany the facility Lichtenau near Chemnitz was constructed for the manufacturing of polycrystalline cutting tools (PCD) for the automobile and accessory industry, aircraft manufacturers and composite processors. This plant has been expanded several times.
Horst Lach puts great emphasis on the statement that he had the help and cooperation of long-term employees in all these years. Without them all of these developments would not have been possible. His son Robert Lach (Dipl.-Ing.) likewise manager and CEO has been with him for 18 years and represents the third generation working in the company.
Horst Lach is proud of the fact that the medium size family enterprise with presently 185 employees is supported also by his daughters Annabelle, Denise und Iris Lach.
In the meantime the family has grown by 9 grandchildren and is on a good course in welcoming the fourth generation.
Finally, activities outside of business the GOLF Hobby:
“I started too late, never enough time, otherwise I would have had a better handicap …” he often says.
We exclude this and wish Horst Lach all the best for the future …