News & Events

Erie, PA Start-Up, DuraTite Systems, Wins Contract with Home Depot!

A Ben Franklin Technology Partners portfolio company, DuraTite Systems, is pleased to announce that their first product, a start collar duct fitting, will be now available at more than 350 Home Depot stores across the United States, including the Erie location.

 The company, which joined the Erie Technology Incubator at Gannon University in 2008, developed and manufactures the revolutionary, QUICK CONNECT START COLLAR.  The test market for these unique ROCKET COLLARS, which are branded as the GAF Masterflow Rocket Collar, will officially hit the shelves May 1, 2013.

 QUICK CONNECT START COLLARS were invented and patented seven years ago by Jim Karnes, DuraTite’s President. “We are thrilled that our product has been picked up by The Home Depot for this test market. It’s always exciting when products that are made in Erie can be purchased right here in our community. The benefits of our design are obvious. Unlike their metal predecessors, these collars don’t have tabs to bend back which cuts installation time but not your fingers. The unique fastening system also allows pre-installation of flexible duct prior to getting into the attic or crawlspace.”

 The ROCKET COLLAR is a universal start collar that is safe, easy, and fast to use for the do-it-yourselfer as well as the professional. UL 2043 certified, the collars can be used on both sheet metal and duct board trunk lines, feature a patented Quick Zip fastening system, and double-sided adhesive gasket for an air tight install in seconds.

 About DuraTite Systems:

 DuraTite Systems is headquartered in the Erie Technology Incubator at Gannon University and manufactures its products locally. DuraTite Systems offers a full line (5”, 6”, 7”, 8”, 10” and 12”) of start collars with and without damper. For more information just visit

About Ben Franklin Technology Partners:

Ben Franklin Technology Partners/CNP, an initiative of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and funded by the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority, provides investment capital and operational assistance to emerging tech-based companies and small, existing manufacturers for the purpose of creating and retaining jobs in Pennsylvania. See 

About the Erie Technology Incubator (ETI):

Located on the campus of Gannon University, the Erie Technology Incubator is Erie, Pennsylvania’s only technology incubator. ETI provides early-stage, high-growth technology-based companies with office space, mentoring, strategic consulting and other resources necessary to support them during this challenging phase.