Ludman Industries (formerly Ludman Machine Company), founded in 1968, has a rich heritage in the manufacture of roll compaction, granulating, flaking, shredding, and crushing machinery. Based upon the established product lines from the 1950's of the Allis-Chalmers Manufacturing Company-Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Ludman has continued to expand the lines with new technology for increased production. 

  • 1974 Ludman starts manufacturing machines for Allis-Chalmers on subcontract basis.
  • 1986 Ludman purchases Compactor, Flaking Mill, and Granulating Mill Product Lines from Allis-Chalmers.
  • 1990 to 2010 Forty-Three (43) Roll Compactors supplied to fertilizer industry alone.
    (i.e. Potash, Ammonium Sulphate, Potassium Nitrate)
  • 1994 Flaking Mill produced with automatic roll gap positioning.
  • 1996 First Forty Inch (40 inch) diameter Compactor supplied with hydraulic drive.
  • 2010 Ninety-Two (92) Ludman/Allis-Chalmers Compactors operating in Potash Mines worldwide.


Development of Ludman Compactors  for the Potash Industry
The original Ludman compactors were developed and designed by Allis Chalmers Corporation in the 1950’s.

Originally Allis Chalmers was approached by a rock salt firm looking for a means to recover salt fines that had no commercial value.  The success they had with their laboratory tests was such that the compactor gained favor with the salt industry as early as 1955.

The firms in the potash industry learned of the process and went to Allis Chalmers for test work.  This process was so successful that most of the potash mines there have used the Ludman/A-C equipment, some of which was installed as early as 1957.  The model 2424 compactor, first installed at this time, had 24 inch diameter x 24 inch face rolls and quickly became a standard in the industry.  Over 14 Model 2424 Potash Compactors were installed.  The majority of these machines are still being used today.

When the vast potash reserves in Saskatchewan were developed in the 1960’s again Model 2424 Allis Chalmers/Ludman Compactors were installed in nearly every mine.

The fact that the majority of these Model 2424 Compactors are still in operation after 30 years of service is proof of the durability of the original Allis Chalmers design.  One unique feature is the hydrodynamic journal bearing design which utilizes babbitted bushings, together with a circulating oil lubrication system.  This bearing design has proved very effective under the high load slow speed operation of the potash compactors. 

After Ludman purchased the Compactor Product Line from Allis Chalmers in 1986, the potash market entered into a series of expansions to increase their granular potash production.  As a result 10 additional Ludman Model 2424 Compactors were installed between 1989 and 1996.  One postash company describes their experience with Ludman compactors as follows:

 “For the 12 compactors installed since 1989 and for the 3 original compactors upgraded since then, maintenance costs due to mechanical failure of these compactors has been virtually zero. By correct design and general arrangement, proper tools, training and spare parts support we are able to change a roll out in less than 8 hours.  A hydraulic ram can be replaced in less than 2 hours and a complete machine can be erected and running in less than 5 days.  Ludman compactor maintenance costs have become a “non-issue”. It must be noted that all machines have run continuously since their startup.  Compactors operate 365 days per year, 24 hours per day and are maintained on an as needed basis.”