In 1962, when Eastwind Diamond Abrasives’ founder and owner Doug Klein was 12 years old, he was very frustrated with his metalworking tools - so he built himself a 6” grinding arbor with a wooden housing. This intrepid step was the first of many Doug took over the years.
Before he was 20, Doug made a name for himself as a top gem-cutter and mineral collector. He sold his work at various gem shows and to private jewelers, always showcasing cuttings others couldn’t attain because they didn’t have Doug’s self-created tools.
By 1980, Doug opened Eastwind Gem Cutting in Windsor, Vermont, where he became one of the go-to gem cutters in the nation. But just as he found his metalworking tools inadequate, Doug found that the very limited abrasives available for gem cutting were not up to his personal standards, so he began his own explorations into creating tools that could do far better for significantly less cost.
The “eureka!” moment came in 1992, when Doug finally hit on the right mix of materials after several years of trial and error. To test his new product, Doug gave out free samples to fellow gem cutters at shows and to the Bennington, VT school district, which had a lapidary shop. The feedback was excellent, and within a few months, Doug moved into selling his new diamond abrasive products full-time.