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Soper's Supply | Century Products

Shop Century Motors At Soper's Supply Ltd

Our History

A Tradition of Excellence Since 1940

  • 1940 - A. O. Smith enters the electric motor industry with the purchase of Sawyer Electric Manufacturing Co., a maker of small-diameter and small integral horsepower electric motors for use in oil wells.

  • 1947 - On April 29, the Whirl-A-Way Motor Company of Tipp City, Ohio ships its first 25 electric motors to Sta-Rite Industries of Delavan, Wisconsin. More than 50 years later, Sta-Rite is still our customer.

  • 1950 - A. O. Smith acquires Whirl-A-Way and consolidates all of its motor operations in Tipp City.

  • 1952 - Century Electric (now A. O. Smith) builds the first low-cost, high-volume permanent split capacitor motor.

  • 1953 - A. O. Smith begins work on developing hermetic motors for the air conditioning and commercial refrigeration industries.

  • 1960 - A. O. Smith introduces the square flange mounting, a concept that becomes a popular alternative to the C-Face motor in the pump industry.

  • 1964 - To meet the growing demand for hermetic motors, A. O. Smith opens a plant in Mt. Sterling, Kentucky.

  • 1965 - A. O. Smith applies the enclosed-canopy two-compartment motor concept to pool pump motors. The design improves motor reliability by separating the switching components from the motor windings.

  • 1975 - Century Electric produces the first UL-approved swimming pool motor.

  • 1976 - A. O. Smith opens its first motor plant outside the United States in Bray, Ireland, to serve commercial compressor customers in Europe and the U. S. with large-horsepower hermetic motors.

  • 1982 - MagneTek's Motor Division (now A. O. Smith) introduces the first triple-voltage, factory-wired "quick connect" fractional horsepower three-phase motors.

  • 1983 - The company introduces the Centurion switchless, permanent split capacitor motors for the swimming pool, spa, and jetted tub industries.

  • 1986 - A. O. Smith acquires Westinghouse Electric’s Small Motor Division.

  • 1991 - A. O. Smith develops the first hermetic motor insulation system compatible with R-134a non-ozone-depleting refrigerant.

  • 1992 - The Bray plant earns ISO-9002 certification.

  • 1995 - A. O. Smith develops the first hermetic motor insulation systems compatible with ammonia.

  • 1996 - MagneTek discovers the cause of premature failure in inverter-duty motors, leading to the development of the Speed Engineered inverter duty line of motors.

  • 1997 - A. O. Smith acquires UPPCO, Inc., becoming the world’s largest manufacturer of subfractional horsepower C-frame motors.

  • 1998 - The company acquires General Electric’s domestic hermetic motor operations, becoming North America’s largest manufacturer of hermetic motors.

  • 1998 - York International makes A. O. Smith its Tier One motor supplier.

  • 1999 - A. O. Smith acquires the worldwide electric motor operations of MagneTek Inc.

  • 2005 - A. O. Smith acquires YYZM in YueYang, China

  • 2008 - A. O. Smith introduces new Branding Initiative

  • 2011 - Regal-Beloit Corporation acquires Electrical Products Company from A. O. Smith


Fractional Horsepower Motors

Durable fractional horsepower motors are available in sizes ranging from 1/20th to five horsepower and include split-phase, permanent split capacitor, capacitor start, and polyphase models.

Subfractional Horsepower Motors

Compact, reliable C-frame subfractional motors are single coil, two pole shade pole style products. They are used in a wide range of air-moving applications where size and cost matter most such as bathroom and kitchen ventilation fans, appliances (microwave and convection oven fans, refrigerator evaporative cooler fans, dishwashers, and humidifiers), and portable medical equipment.


A complete line of crossflow/tangential and centrifugal blowers and induced draft combustion blowers is available from 20 cubic feet per minute (CFM) airflow to over 1200 CFM. These are typically use for electronic cooling, exhaust blowers, wood stoves, fireplace inserts and draft inducers.

Integral Horsepower AC Motors

These motors, designed for industrial and commercial applications, range in size from one horsepower to 400 horsepower for general purpose applications and up to 800+ horsepower for custom designs.

DC Motors

These durable permanent magnet and wound field motors range from 1/8 to 5 horsepower in open TENV and TEFC designs. A wide range of choices exist for general purpose applications, sealed washdown motors for food processing and food service, IEC metric motors, special purpose servo motors as well as low voltage and custom designs.