A&L Handles, Inc., designer and manufacturer of custom plastic rod extrusions, screwdriver, and specialty tool handles, is a fully-owned subsidiary of Pratt-Read Corporation located in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Prior to becoming part of Pratt-Read Corporation in September 1999, A&L was into its third generation of family ownership. “A&L” represents its previous father and son owners, R. Alvin (Al) and W. Les Wetty (Les), respectively, who have built the company’s solid reputation for quality and service. Al was born in Spring City, Pennsylvania and graduated Pottstown High School in 1935. He took a plastics course at Yale University and after World War II went into business making screwdriver handles. His father and brother joined him and formed a company called S.A. Wetty & Sons. They worked out of their home in Royersford, Pennsylvania. Al’s father, Stephen A. Wetty, was the first person to apply for a patent for the invention of the ball-bearing universal joint. Apparently the inventive streak runs in the family because Al created a co-extrusion machine that allows for the production of a two-color rod, (otherwise called inlay or striping).
In 1970 the family business was sold to Stanley Works (Stanley Tools) and Al worked for them for four years retiring in 1974. Retirement however was short lived. In 1976, so began the father and son enterprise, A&L Handles, Inc.
Al’s son, W. Les Wetty, grew up with the business, working after school and on weekends for his grandfather while attending Spring Ford High School and graduating from Valley Forge Military Academy in l963. He then earned his business degree through Ursinus College in Pennsylvania.
In 1979 the business was moved to its current location on Shoemaker Road and now employs 100+ employees and ships over 40,000,000 handles per year worldwide.
A&L and its dedicated employees have worked to establish and maintain a standard of manufacturing excellence. A&L implements statistical process control methodology, and provides ongoing employee training to ensure the highest quality and the greatest performance in the customer's finished product.