Video: Inside the Cometic Gaskets Story

Cometic Gasket is a well-known name in the automotive performance market, as their multi-layered steel gaskets have become a staple in custom engine shops around the world. They are also a major supplier of gaskets for the Original Equipment and Remanufactured Engine Industries. With clients ranging from NASCAR teams to agriculture, the American success story of this family owned and operated business is truly sensational.

Cometic Gasket is owned and operated by the Gorman family.

Cometic Gasket is owned and operated by the Gorman family

Cometic Gasket was birthed in 1989 by Founder and CEO Bob Gorman and three partners. Working out of a 1,500 square-foot facility, Gorman and his crew were handling the design, manufacturing, packaging, and shipping of their new product. A mere 900 SKUs were produced in their first year, but the market demand was overwhelming.

“We manufacture gaskets that no one else wants to deal with,” states Gorman in a 25 Year Anniversary video produced for the company in 2014.

Gorman says that niche currently makes up sixty-percent of their product line. Cometic attributes a large portion of its success to their ability to learn their customer’s business models and tailor their services accordingly. Personal service has always been a focus of the company, working directly with their customers to engineer solutions for whatever obstacles they are up against.

What really makes the story sensational is its family ties. Gorman and his wife, Bindy, brought the company as far as they possibly could. When their daughter Kristen and son Jeff came on board, the family business reached goals their parents never dreamed of. But their children had their part in the business from the very beginning.

“My dad, mom, brother and I were in the kitchen talking about how dad was starting a gasket company.  He was trying to think of a name,” recalls daughter Kristen Damberger.  “He said he wanted the company name to relate to ‘something that went fast.  Like a comet.’ We had the dictionary out to help us think of a name, so I looked up the word ‘comet.’  And at the end of the definition it said the word ‘cometic, ko•met’ik, Pertaining to a comet.’ So I said, ‘How about Cometic?’ And that was that, Cometic it was.”

Kristen is also responsible for the current logo that incorporates a star and orbit into it.

“It’s a family memory that I cherish.  A memory that when in its moment we were naive to what Cometic would become, and how it would take shape to include all four of [us] working together with four completely different strengths as business owners,” says Damberger.

Cometic Gaskets became wholly owned by the Gorman family in 2013. Today the business finds its home in a 70,000 square-foot facility located in Concord, Ohio. The state-of-the-art facility houses both Research and Development and a manufacturing center with 120 employees. Cometic now offers over 85,000 SKUs. All of the products are made in the United States with materials manufactured on American soil.

About the author

Eric Labore

Eric LaBore's extensive background includes a solid education in automotive and high performance motorsports technology and 10 years of working in the industry. Currently, he is a full-time ASE master technician and advanced engine performance specialist. As a former dyno operator and engine assembler, he is passionate about custom and performance engines.
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