Marvin H. Feldmann
The Inventor Behind it All
The conception of a power ice drill, for ice fishing, began in 1948 with a fellow Plymouth Wisconsin Fire Department member of Marvin Feldmann's, who loved to ice fish and could often outsmart the fish by getting his limit. This avid ice fisherman was a truck driver and delivered and picked up product from Lauson Engine Company in New Holstein, WI. (Lauson Company was later named Tecumseh Power Products.)
He had purchased an engine from Lauson Engine Company and endeavored to build a rig to cut through the lake ice with power. His efforts were met with failure but he knew Marvin Feldmann had started his small business and possessed good mechanical ability. He discussed his efforts and needed to build a powered ice cutting machine. Marvin agreed to give it a try. It did not end with a single effort as Marvin gave it many tries before he succeeded in developing a product that could cut through the ice, with engine power, in a reasonable fashion … in other words, in a Jiffy. Thus, the Jiffy Power Ice Drill came into being.
Improvements were made over the past 70 years for the Jiffy Ice Drill. These included a four-cycle gas and propane engine, lighter weight units, improved ice cutting technology, and major safety and handling upgrades. Good quality for satisfactory service and long life has continued over these many years to be a prime requisite for all products made by Feldmann Engineering. Winter fishing enthusiasts throughout the world recognize and enjoy the use as the best ice drill product in the marketplace, thus causing Jiffy to be the number ONE selling product. Because … We’ve Been Through It All.
Brief History of Feldmann Engineering & Mfg. Co. Inc.
Feldmann Engineering & Mfg. Co. Inc. started in 1950 in a cheese factory building near Plymouth, Wisconsin, by Marvin H. Feldmann as a proprietorship. The business was incorporated in 1968.
Products produced during the course of its existence included the running gear of farm wagons, farm bale elevators, rotary garden tillers, and snowmobiles. Feldmann developed and sold all-terrain vehicles, known as the Terra Tiger, of which an all-terrain cycle soon followed. A power ice drill was developed in 1951 and continues today as the principal product for the company. The company has become the world leader in the manufacture and sale of its Jiffy Ice Drills. Other products include lawn aerators, which are rapidly gaining in popularity due to the general awareness of the environmental benefit and beauty of healthy turf, plus a portable fencing and shrub and tree planting auger.
Other products built during the course of the company's history include transmissions for home washing machines, transmissions for soft serve ice cream machines, along with go-carts, hydraulic tiller gear cases, and hand ice drills.
One early product was an automatic twine tying attachment for the J.I. Case hay baler. This attachment was sold to the Case Company in Racine, Wisconsin. The Case Company sold 113,000 of these attachments used by farmers in the first two years. This twine attachment was the fore-runner of the automatic hay and straw balers currently in production worldwide.