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MOS adds equipment as business grows

By: Roger Renstrom

October 11, 2013

To meet increased program demands, MOS Plastics Inc. is investing more than $1.1 million in capital equipment and infrastructure during 2013.

MOS is automating more of its processing, assembly and packaging operations and expects its investments in technology and employee training to help increase sales while holding headcount steady.

Pete Yager, general manager, said challenging projects and market adjustments do not intimidate the San Jose, Calif., firm.

“Basically, the company was built on tooling for semiconductors and electronic housings,” Yager said. As those orders went offshore, MOS filled the gap with a steadily increasing volume of work for the life-science industries, accounting now for about 65 percent of the total.

“We need to capitalize on the industries in Silicon Valley, where we are located,” Yager said by telephone. “We have a big advantage over many molders.” MOS is near many customers, including startups and their outside design firms.

Jason McLoud, sales and business development director, said MOS is “starting to see an uptick in technology companies looking to on-shore projects.”

MOS largely makes medical and diagnostic devices such as surgical instruments, optical and microfluidic diagnostic cartridges, well plates and drug-delivery devices. Such products can require hermetic-seal surfaces, precise mating surfaces and ultrasonic welding of film transfers. MOS uses mold-flow analysis software.

A fifth new Arburg Allrounder goes into operation in October, bringing the San Jose plant to a total of 27 injection presses, including seven electrics, with clamping forces of 28-500 tons. The Arburg brand is on 24 machines; Van Dorn, the other three.

Among the new Arburgs, a hydraulic 28-ton 275V went into service in March, two hydraulic 55-ton 320s in August and an electric 88-ton 470A in September. A hydraulic 500-ton 820S is on its way. Arburg installed integrated Multilift Select linear robotic systems on the 470A and 820S.

MOS occupies 55,000 square feet and had 2012 sales of about $10 million. “We are projected to come in 10-15 percent higher in 2013,” McLoud said.

Recent upgrades of 10,000 square feet within the MOS footprint involved a new quality-assurance lab with additional inspection and analysis equipment.

Established in 1974, MOS is registered under ISO 13485-2003 and ISO 9001-2008 and, in 2009, received certification for medical-device manufacturing from the California Department of Health.

MOS has separate Class 10,000 and Class 100,000 clean rooms of 2,000 square feet each for various injection molding, pad printing, assembly and packaging functions.

The firm employs 82 full-time workers, including four mold makers.