California Cool

Dynaflex: Setting Trends Since 1972

For the past 42 years, Dynaflex Products has not only specialized in American-made chrome exhaust parts, but created an entire industry, as well. Dynaflex was the first company to ever produce and sell high-quality, chrome stacks in sizes larger than five inches, which had been the standard size forever. They coined the term “Monster Stacks” and today it used across the industry to describe oversized exhaust systems. But, in actuality, Dynaflex invented them way back in the 1980s and still produce them by the thousands, today.

Based in Los Angeles, California, the company was loosely formed by Gil Contreras and Bob McGovern in 1968 after the two men met at Aeroquip, a company they both worked for that made, among other things, cooling and exhaust systems for rockets. Because the diameters they worked with at the aerospace company were identical to those used on trucks, it only made sense for the two men to set their sights on the trucking industry. Their first product was an expandable flex joint for truck exhaust systems, made to replace the troublesome and unreliable fiber-paper bellows of the day.

A few years later, the company was officially formed and incorporated in 1972. Since their main product back then was “dynamic and flexible” joints, the company was called Dynaflex Products. Today, Dynaflex has over 7,500 active part numbers and manufactures complete exhaust systems from “turbo to tail pipe” for virtually ever make and model of heavy duty truck made from 1950 to the present. That is a lot of trucks!

With a large manufacturing facility, a chroming plant, and a well-organized warehouse, all located near each other in Los Angeles, California, Dynaflex has been a California original since the very beginning. And, except for just seven non-essential items made elsewhere, the rest of their 7,500 products are all made in the USA (after developing them about 20 years ago, Pickett elbows are still their most popular part). With almost 100 employees, many of whom have been around for 10, 20 and even 30 years, Dynaflex is proud of their reputation for making quality, innovative products, and their excellent customer service.

Gil and Bob were great business partners. Gil was the engineer and the “idea” guy, while Bob was the salesman. Together, along with help from people like Sal Quezada, who has been with the company since 1978, Dynaflex grew and prospered. In the early 1980s, in response to customer demand, Dynaflex made the first chrome 6-inch diameter stacks for trucks – and they were a huge hit. From there, it didn’t take long for truckers to start asking for even bigger stacks, and by the late 1980s they were making 7-inch and 8-inch pipes, as well. And they don’t just make the pipes – they make everything – including the gaskets, connectors, spools, brackets, mufflers, elbows, heat shields, clamps and more.

And as the engines in trucks have changed, so have the Dynaflex exhaust systems. Constantly re-engineering their products to accommodate the special needs of these new engines and the rigs they come in, Dynaflex’s pioneering and innovative spirit has kept the company on top, where they plan to stay for decades to come. One of their latest offerings is known as the “Z-Series Kit” which makes replacing your entire exhaust system really easy. You tell them a few simple things like the make, model and year of your truck, what size and style of pipe you want, and how tall you want the tops to be, and they put the entire system on one pallet, with every piece you will need to get the job done. It has made a somewhat confusing and often daunting process a lot simpler.

Bob McGovern retired last year and is now Chairman of the Board. Gil began to have medical issues in 2012 so his only daughter, Denise Pehrsson, who had never worked at the company but was highly educated and had ran a few other businesses, was brought in to help. She is now the president of the company. Sadly, her dad died in January 2014, but his legacy lives on at Dynaflex. Denise’s son Cory (27), who began working at the company part-time when he was just 15 years old and full-time five years ago, is now the Vice President of Marketing. Together, with Randy Simons, the Vice President of Finance, these three dynamic individuals have become the new triangle of leadership at Dynaflex.

Filling the shoes of such well-liked and respected men like Gil and Bob has not been easy, but thanks to a very loyal and talented staff who has helped make the transition a lot smoother, Denise, Cory, Randy, Sal and the entire team continue to be the driving force behind the company, leading Dynaflex into the future with both barrels blazing.

While walking through the offices on our tour, we got to meet some of the other people who are behind the scenes at Dynaflex – people like Mike, Andy, Rachael, Travis, David, Andrew, Omar, Al, Jay and Rich, just to name a few. Touring the manufacturing facility, we met a few folks out there too, including Alex and Pacheco. Down the street at the warehouse, Junior gave us a complete tour and told us about the extraordinary packing procedures Dynaflex performs to ensure that all of their products arrive at their destinations undamaged.

With two full shifts working in the manufacturing facility, they have ten welding bays, two automated saws (named Poncho and Maria), eight bending machines, and all sorts of other machines that cut, bend, punch, grind, split, press, and a bunch of other loud stuff (there is a lot going on out there)! Every part they make, whether it is destined to be chrome-plated or not, is made to the same strict standards, and every part they make is put on a test fixture to ensure proper fit before it ever leaves their building. They also have a “new parts” area where various makes and models of trucks are brought in and fitted with experimental components. At the time, there was a very cool red and black dump truck in there being fitted with some new “tester” parts (I could tell you what parts it was getting, but then I’d have to kill you). In addition to the three California facilities, they also have distribution warehouses in Kansas City and Dallas, to ensure the fastest delivery of their parts possible.

With Cory in charge of marketing and new product development, the team pushes to constantly create new products and kits. As part of their “Z-Series” catalog, they launched a signature series top stack line to their arsenal of choices, giving their customers nine different and unique designs to choose from. They also started a new brand ambassador program called the DP Team, which is a small group of elite truck owners who are leading the way in regards to creativity and craftsmanship on their trucks, and dedicate much of their “spare” time to show them off. In recognition of their efforts, Dynaflex invites them to join the team, which entitles them to prototypes, etched DP Team clamps, and a bunch of DP swag. Also, their amazing trucks are featured in Dynaflex ads and catalogs and, eventually, a DP Team calendar. These guys are “the best of the best” and Dynaflex is proud to have them on their team. Many of our past cover truck owners (and friends) are on the team, which makes us feel proud, too.

Making personal connections with their customers and dealers is important to Dynaflex. Cory, Denise and Sal spend a big portion of their time traveling the country, attending truck shows, and meeting their distributors. This hands-on approach has become legendary in the industry, as the new leaders strive to continue what the original leaders started over 40 years ago. If you ever have a problem with your Dynaflex part, you can be sure that your phone call will not only be answered (by David), but that your issue will be resolved promptly.

A California original that has stood the test of time, Dynaflex has come a long way from the tiny storage shed in Marina Del Rey they started out in back in 1972, but they are still a tight-knit family operation. Proud to manufacture quality, American-made products for the entire world, Dynaflex is poised to lead the way into the future of after-market exhaust systems. We are proud to have Dynaflex in our family of advertisers and are happy to say that, like 10-4 Magazine, something good for the trucking industry is still coming out of California! If you would like to learn more about Dynaflex Products, go to your local distributor or visit www.dynaflexproducts.com.

About Daniel J. Linss - Editor

Daniel J. Linss has been with 10-4 Magazine since the beginning in September of 1993, and has been the Editor and Art Director since March of 1994. Over the years, he has also become one of the main photographers for 10-4 and is well-known for his insightful cover feature articles and honest show reports. Married for over 20 years with three children, Daniel operates a marketing and production company (Daniel Designs) which produces 10-4 Magazine each and every month from his office in Squaw Valley, CA.