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Exposure to Air Conditioning Technicians

It happened that my service station was located near Goettl Air Conditioning Company. Goettl had been in the Phoenix area since 1939 and was well established at the time. I became acquainted with several of their technicians.

While I filled their tanks with gas I often overheard them boast about how much money they were earning. This was in contrast to my challenging efforts to make house payments. Their words would have a profound effect on my future career path. I felt strongly that I needed to make a change so that my family could stop having to live paycheck to paycheck. When I reached the end of my three-year lease I felt that it was time to move on to more profitable ventures. At the time I felt fortunate to find a position at Motorola Semi-Conductor.

Hendel’s Company Policy Manual

Experience at Motorola

One night while working the graveyard shift, I happened to come across a Motorola company policy manual. I found it so interesting that I studied it for hours. I clearly realized the benefits of having such a manual to define the decisions that should be made in different situations. I decided that if I owned another business I would have a detailed manual just like the one I studied at Motorola.

I began experimenting with a production machine called a Thermal Compression Stitch Bonder. Stitch bonders were used to bond small wires to transistors. These machines had a mechanical wire cutter that severed the wire in such a way that a small tab was left to make the connection to the bonding surface. The cutter frequently malfunctioned and caused extensive down time for the machine and for the operator.

The wire cutter device was triggered by a capacitor discharge. It seemed that there must be a better way to accomplish this task. Finally, after much experimentation, I removed the mechanical cutter and attached the capacitor wire directly to the bonding wire. When the capacitor discharged the bonding wire melted and left a small round ball that served as a much better bonding pad.

I showed my experiment to an engineer who immediately converted an entire line of stitch bonders to capacitor discharge cutters and called the new process "ball bonding." In a short time all the bonders were converted to ball bonding and this method is still used today.

While I didnít get much credit for this innovation my self-confidence was heightened by this experience as well as the truly spectacular event of meeting my future wife, Linda Armour. I had been previously married, and like so many people who have been through a divorce, I had thought I would never marry again. Meeting Linda changed my thinking.

Linda lived with her mother, one brother and two sisters. Linda is the oldest of all the siblings. Her paycheck from working at Motorola was the sole support of her family. It was obvious to me that Linda was a very caring and supportive person
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