In 1906, the Hove family moved to Pasadena, California from Nebraska. Father and three sons were concrete and plastering contractors, covering the Los Angeles basin. During World War II, V.C. (Pappy) Hove was involved in the war effort doing concrete work on factories and housing. Pappy moved to Big Bear in the mid forties and spent winters doing concrete contracting in the new development called Apple Valley in the High Desert. V.C. Hove and Sons was formed in 1952 with Pappy and his two sons, Robert and Richard Hove. This partnership continued doing concrete contracting in the Victor Valley area through 1970. In 1970, they changed the name to HovCon, Inc. and continued until 1976.

In 1955, the partners purchased HI-GRADE MATERIALS CO. Hi-Grade consisted of 40 acres of aggregate land, a small aggregate plant, batch plant and three small ready mix concrete trucks, all located in Lucerne Valley. In 1957, the offices and concrete batch plant were relocated to Bear Valley Road, next to the Mojave River in order to be more central to the High Desert market. In 1959, a new batch plant was purchased and the ready mix truck fleet expanded to five mixers. This brings us to 1970 when Hi-Grade constructed a 150 ton per hour aggregate plant in Lucerne Valley.

In 1963, we purchased our present site on Bear Valley Road, east of the Santa Fe railroad tracks. For many years, we had been buying steel for concrete contracting and for resale to Hi-Grade customers. In 1971, we looked at this market and noted the lack of a steel distributor. None existed in our area and all steel products were being shipped in, so we organized a company called ENDURA STEEL, INC. Our Bear Valley Road site had a 12,000 square foot industrial building which was ideal for a metals service center. Endura grew slowly as funds were advanced from other operations to increase steel inventories and cover operating costs. In1979, Endura moved to a new warehouse/ office complex on the Bear Valley property. Endura became a force in the community by 1985 and opened a division in Lancaster, California in 1988, Fort Mojave, Arizona in 1990 and most recently in Kingman, Arizona in 2006.

Endura Steel is now a full service steel, angle, bar, plate, tube, rebar, aluminum, etc. distributor in the High Desert and parts of Arizona. It has seven trucks for transporting steel and six forklifts. Its locations have a shear, saw and ironworker in order to better serve its customers.

In 1980, C. Allen Smith suggested that what this desert needed was a steel fabrication shop that would have the machinery to cut, bend, roll and fabricate steel, all of which had to be done "down below." Smith Ironworks was formed to do this as part of the Endura Steel corporation. Smith has equipment which can brake 1/4" x 10', shear up to 1/2" x 10', roll 3/16" x 8', saw 16" beams, punch 1 1/16" hole in 1/2" plate, punch 15/16" holes in flange and bend 1 1/2" pipe to an 8" radius, as well as the capability to fabricate all types of steel. New equipment including a camber machine was added in 2000. This allows Smith to bend I beams up to W36 x 210. Smith is a licensed contractor in California, Arizona and Nevada and able to erect up to three stories high.

In 1981, Robar Enterprises, Inc. was formed and became the holding company for all the entities. Robar is named after Robert and Barbara Hove. New land was purchased adjacent to our Bear Valley Road property for a total of over 40 acres which is zoned as heavy industrial. We are in a continuous development mode on Robar Park, where we have situated our own companies - Endura Steel, Smith Ironworks, a Hi-Grade batch plant and the Hi-Grade fuel station. Our garage/office complex with 14,500 square feet plus was completed in the fall of 1988.

Hi-Grade has expanded over these many years and since 1976, the following has occurred.

  • The aggregate plant in Lucerne Valley has expanded to 400 plus tons per hour. Our aggregate land is now about 300 acres with a reserve of 70,000,000 tons.
  • A batch plant site went into operation in Joshua Tree in 1982 in order to cover the Morongo Basin market.
  • In 1983, a new 300 yard per hour batch plant was installed in Hesperia.
  • In 1985, a 120 acre parcel of land was purchased in Littlerock, California with a batch plant and quarry. Another 100 acres of quarry reserves was added in 2005 and our new Littlerock aggregate plant has increased production from 350 tons per hour to 1,000 tons per hour.
  • 120 acres of aggregate land was acquired in 1988 with 40,000,000 tons reserve at Deep Creek.
  • In 1988, a 200 yard per hour concrete batch plant was put in on 10.7 acres in Adelanto.
  • In 1989, 16.6 industrial acres were purchased in Lancaster and a 200 yard per hour batch plant was installed in 1990.

AsCon Recy Co., a division of Hi-Grade Materials, was started in 1991. AsCon receives broken pieces of asphalt and concrete and is an economical alternative to landfills. The pieces are stockpiled until such time as they are crushed into base material and sold for use in the construction industry. AsCon Recy Co. currently has sites in Adelanto, Hesperia, Lucerne Valley, Littlerock, Lancaster and Oro Grande.

As 2007 unfolds, we have added over 100 new ready mix and aggregate haul trucks to our fleet. As our history unfolds, we will keep you informed about where we have been and what has been added . . .

Robert Hove
Chairman of the Board