Archive for Březen, 2012

Plastic products proudly made here

When Norman Wood saw an advertisement in the newspaper for a toy factory for sale eight years ago, he decided it was worth checking out.

After all, his father had a small woodworking factory and, as a child, he spent a lot of time in it. He thought he would quite like to own his own factory.

With a background in advertising, marketing and philosophy, along with a degree in planning, Mr Wood, originally from Auckland, bought EPI Plastics and became the third owner of the business, which was established in Dunedin in 1974.

Passion Plastics EPI Ltd manufactures plastic products using injection and blow moulding - everything from jerry cans and bottles to strawberry and herb planters and children’s ride-on tricycles.

Promotional products are also made at the Hope St factory.

There had been “tremendous” changes over the eight years, Mr Wood said. Staff numbers had gone from 12 to four, although turnover had increased.

A major boost to business came during the Christchurch earthquakes, when orders for plastic containers came flooding in.

The factory was temporarily ramped up to run 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to keep up with demand.

While the financial return was welcome - it allowed the company to pay off debt and also opened up new customers - there was also the altruism element and working “extra hard” because it was “our brothers and sisters up the road” who were affected by the tragedy, Mr Wood said.

That was another advantage of being a New Zealand supplier - the containers were needed immediately and it would take too long to source them from the likes of China.

Plastic suppliers and freight companies also worked hard to help. “That’s what you lose if you lose local manufacturing,” he said.

At that time, the company was going through about a shipping container-load of plastic a week, whereas that quantity would normally last about two months.

By August-September, things had settled down and business returned to normal.

He described the plastic, which was food-grade and made in Thailand, as being “like beans in a bean bag”.

While the plastics industry was increasingly being monopolised by a few big players, his business was “pretty cost-effective”.

He enjoyed working with small customers, saying he cared about his customers and their businesses.

About 95% of the company’s products left Dunedin but only a very small amount was exported. That was a real opportunity in the future, however, and something he was exploring.

He believed growth for his business was in importing, exporting and product development. He was also looking at moving to more modern premises in the future and investing in new equipment.

Mr Wood believed Dunedin boxed above its weight in terms of its business skills, saying there were some “pretty grunty” businesses in the city. He was grateful to the various mentors who had helped him in business over the years.

Life was busy for Mr Wood, who also has a small advertising business, owns Hulmes Court Bed and Breakfast and co-owns a book-importing business, while he and wife Zina are expecting their first child in several weeks. The key to juggling so many balls in the air was having “great staff”, he said.

Injection Moulding – Molding The Future Of Industry

There are naturally occurring plastic materials in the world. Products like chewing gum and shellac have been in use for centuries. Innovative scientists quickly saw the possibilities for the chemical manipulation of natural materials such as rubber and nitrocellulose, and, in 1855, Alexander Parkes invented the first synthetic plastic. Ever since then, the use of plastic in industry has been steadily growing. The ability to use plastic widely in industry has been made possible by the process of injection moulding. Plastic moulding is a useful way to get the most out of plastic, and to manipulate it into whatever you desire.

Injection moulding is what makes it possible to use plastic in as many ways as we do today. By injecting molten plastic into a mold and using pressure and heat to harden it, you can create durable plastic pieces through the process of plastic moulding that fit to specification and can withstand a lot of wear and tear. People sometimes think that because plastic is not as durable as metal that it is an ineffective material to use for parts. But the truth is that plastic is far less expensive than metal and, while it may not last as long as metal, is still perfect for use in certain applications.

The process of plastic moulding starts with plastic granules. These granules are fed into the injection chamber of an injection moulding machine through a hopper. The inside of the machine also contains a reciprocating screw, which makes sure that the plastic is fed gradually and evenly into the heating element. The plastic is then heated to melt it, and it then passes through the nozzle into the mold cavity. At that point, the plastic is slowly injected into the mold itself, where a moveable plate applies pressure to the plastic to make sure that it hardens.

Using an injection moulding machine to create plastic parts is a fast and easy way to get the parts you need as soon as you need them. And once you have had a mold tooled for the part that you need, you can use it over and over again so that you will always have ready access to that part. And by keeping a few spare parts on hand, you can make sure that you never have to suffer any downtime while you are waiting for a new part to be manufactured. Plastic moulding is continuing to mold the manufacturing industry.

New equipment is part of growth at Sturgis Molded Products

Anyone who tried to drive through Sturgis around the afternoon of Feb. 17 may have encountered a traffic backup.

An extremely oversized semi-truck load, with State Police escorts, inched its way along U.S. 12 to south Centreville Road.

What might have been a temporary annoyance for drivers was actually a sign of growth for Sturgis Molded Products on Clark Street, said Jason Harloff, vice president of manufacturing.

The oversized load was an injection molding press. Weight restrictions required that the 204,000-pound piece of machinery be on a series of trailers to distribute the weight, limiting damage to roads. And it traveled many roads from Virgina to Michigan, said Norm Brown, automation technician  at Sturgis Molded Products.

Brown spent three months  arranging the permits and escorts required by each state through which the machinery was hauled.

The latest acquisition will be used to create bleacher seats for gymnasiums, and hopefully is ready to go by summer. Job growth is expected to come about from that project, although company officials didn’t have an immediate estimate of the number of new positions.

SMP has other growth in the works. Construction of a 20,000-square-foot addition is under way and all work has been contracted to local companies,  he said.

The new building added to SMP’s existing 146,000 square-foot space, where the company manufactures a variety of  products for appliance, automotive, consumer and industrial, medical and packaging companies.

Products include trash-cart wheels, scoops for baby formula, airbag casings for cars and dosage cups for medicine.

SMP currently employs more than 200, with jobs in production, clerical, engineers and specialized technical resource workers.

SMP will seek an educated and skilled work force to fill any new positions, Harloff said.
“Employees with an associates degree, along with  those who are skilled in maintenance, machine repair, mold-making, tool-making, electronics and trouble-shooting, will be in high demand,” he said.

Those jobs will require less manual labor, since much of the machinery is sophisticated automation — robots, Harloff said.

Factories are building job recovery in area

Fawn Bringold of Peck spot welds a steel assembly at Redall Industries Inc. in Yale. She’s in two trends: The resurgence in factory hiring and the growing practice of hiring through temp agencies.

“Right now we’re seeing general growth across all sectors, but the primary sector for growth is manufacturing and specifically automotive manufacturing,” said Dan Casey, chief executive officer of the St. Clair County Economic Development Alliance.

The current optimism about the manufacturing industry is almost a 180-degree turn from three and a half years ago.

“Things were bad for a while,” said Wendy Langolf, human resources director at Engineered Plastic Components, which has locations in Marysville and St. Clair. “But you can definitely see an uptick in the ordering now, especially from the Big Three.”

In 2008, manufacturing shops — particularly automotive suppliers — began closing up or laying off employees in droves following the downturn of the Big Three automakers.

St. Clair County manufacturers alone shed 3,963 jobs between 2008 and 2009. With the Big Three on the mend, local suppliers are on their way back.
Strength in experience and location

St. Clair County manufacturers work in a variety of industries, from tool and die and injection molding to metal stamping and assembly, but two common threads unite them all when Casey pitches the area as a great place to expand.

“Our edge is that we have an available work force for manufacturing,” he said. “And our wage structure is a bit lower, which makes us more competitive for companies that are looking to hire new employees.”

Langolf said she looks for people with previous manufacturing experience to put on the floor at Engineered Plastic Components — and she doesn’t have a problem finding them.

“Our employees are press operators, and we try to find experienced operators,” she said. “Because of all of the layoffs and bankruptcies, there are a lot of qualified employees out there.”

Injection Molding Company : The Basic Principle Of Injection Molding

Injection molding is a producing technique for making parts from both thermoplastic and thermosetting plastic materials in top injection molding company. Heated, fluid plastic is injected at high pressure into a mold, which is the complete opposite of the desired product shape. Injection molding is employed generally for manufacturing a selection of parts, from the tiniest part to whole body panels of car.The process of injection molding can be described in 4 straightforward steps. These include Plasticizing, Injection, Chilling, and Ejection. Each one of these steps isn’t like the other and the right procedure is required for the successful completion of the total process.

Plasticizing- iT involves the conversion of the polymer material from its normal hard granular form at room temperatures, to the liquid which is necessary for injection at its correct softening temperature.

Injection- This is the stage in which this melt is introduced into a mold to totally fill a hole or cavities.

Chilling- It is the act of removing heat from the melt to convert it from a liquid consistency back to its original rigid state.

EjectionThe ejection phase is the last phase where the removal of the cooled, moulded part from the mould hole is done.

The Use of Powder Coatings for Plastic and Metal Parts

Right after a plastic piece of office furniture, an appliance or an electronic device is molded, often specialty coatings are added. The coating reinforces the plastic while adding an eye-catching and protective color as well as a clear powder coating. In addition to the above mentioned examples, various other industries make use of these specialty coatings as well, for example automotive, medical, seating, consumer goods and other custom applications.

These plastic powder coatings supply different advantages, like improved resistance to UV exposure and a stronger durability than an uncoated piece. There are a broad variety of color options as well as textures and finishes readily available and making use of this procedure eliminates the requirement to keep large inventories of color resins on hand. This method also offers a lower environmental effect than plating or painting and is capable of big production runs of molded pieces coated in one base color. Using powder coatings also results in a constant color with finished items.

Powder coatings are also applied to metal pieces. With metal pieces, the powder coating, which is a dry, free-flowing powder that does not need to have a solvent, is applied either by making use of a fluidized bed or electrostatically. Then, after the powder is applied, it is placed under heat. This stage enables the powder to freely cover the part and form a strong skin. The skin, which is significantly more durable than paint, is usually either thermoset polymer or thermoplastic.

Again, making use of a powder coating with metal pieces yields several benefits over making use of a liquid coating. To start, it is far more eco-friendly as powder coating emits nearly zero volatile organic compounds and produces less hazardous waste than liquid coatings. Further, 100 percent of overspray can be recycled, which indicates almost all of the product can be used and little to none wasted. The coating is significantly thicker and stronger than a paint coating and will not run or sag.

This technological innovation is an excellent option for plastic and metal pieces. Powder coatings offer you a range of benefits and provide diverse alternatives for customizing the color, finish and texture of an item.

Learn About Molded Plastic Parts and Injection Plastic Molding

Yesterday is really totally different from today specifically in the facet of having a Molded Plastic Parts or elements. An individual can under no circumstances really have her or his needed custom plastic parts without going to a plastic part manufacturer plus paying big bucks. Nevertheless to advancement of the technology currently, presently there already are numerous supplies that will help you in generating plastic molded parts even in the comfort of your own home. The fantastic thing about this is that it simply calls for small investment. The plastic molded parts are only as high in craftsmanship on the grounds that the parts developed by manufacturing plants. Really the only difference depends on the ease of the plastic molding process.

If this is the first time for you to produce your very first plastic mold masterpiece, then you have got a great deal of work to carry out. Before you start performing some thing, you’ll want to prepare yourself the needed supplies first. Be aware that you cant ever start in number two if you’ll not begin in number one. Listed here are the things you need in order to make top quality plastic molded parts: mixing sticks, throw-away mixing cups, rubber gloves, brush, release agent, liquid plastic compound, aerosol acrylic enameled surface, scissors, hot glue, disposable container or even cardboard and silicone molding compound. Work with a glue gun for your ideal object or even figure to generally be molded to generally be attached on a flat work surface. This is very crucial that you assure that your plastic molded parts will probably be intact while they are already finished.

The base of a plastic container should be cut and set over the figure. When it enters in an exclusive or even uncommon shape as well as size, a cardboard strip ought to be utilised alternatively. It’s also advisable to leave a place measuring½-1 inch between the container wall also, the object. In the event the object is already located suitably, you will have the container glued on the work surface. This is the means of acquiring that the silicone will not leak out.

Injection Plastic Molding is a kind of an exceptional system that is utilized in creating plastic material parts. In achieving this, a high pressure can be used in injecting the molten plastic in to a mold. It will eventually then be injected in the inverse blueprint from the client’s ideal design so that you can produce the needed shape. In this style of technique, the items of dissimilar molded plastic are generally engineered from thermosetting plastics plus thermoplastics. To paraphrase, this is a method in which the heat-softened plastic is usually pressed from a specific tube into a cool aperture that is definitely formed within the material’s form. It’s got accomplished popularity and regard and made a terrific impact in numerous sectors just like construction, packaging, domestic plumbing, medical, toys, consumer products, motor vehicle along with aerospace.

Almost all sectors in today’s generation employ plastic molds. So, plastic injection molding is quite sought after. Listed here are just some of the most widespread sectors which are recognized to utilize plastic molds within their day-to-day operations: consumer products, food, automotive, electrical, medical, agriculture, gas and oil construction and more.