Blow molder invests in more coextrusion capacity

By Michael Lauzon
Correspondent

Published: February 20, 2014 3:19 pm ET
Updated: February 20, 2014 9:14 pm ET

Image By: Agri-Industrial Plastics Co. Agri-Industrial Plastics Co.has a new six-layer continuous coextrusion blow molder from Kautex Maschinenbau GmbH, its sixth Kautex machine in eight years.

Related to this story

Topics Blow Molding, Lawn & garden

Industrial blow molder Agri-Industrial Plastics Co. is investing about $4.5 million to expand its multi-layer fuel tank production in Fairfield, Iowa.

The private company has ordered a six-layer continuous coextrusion blow molder from Kautex Maschinenbau GmbH, its sixth Kautex machine in eight years. Auxiliary equipment and site preparation round out the investment.

“It represents our continued investment in multi-layer fuel tanks to meet growing demand in the marketplace,” explained Agri-Industrial director of sales Mick Stielow, in a telephone interview.

The firm counts lawn and garden, all-terrain vehicles, snowmobiles and marine markets as key outlets for its production. Small-engine markets for polymer fuel tanks have gained from more stringent emission standards of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board. Agri-Industrial is winning new customers and gaining in the battle with alternate fuel emission barrier technologies such as fluorination and use of additives such as nano clays in polyethylene.

“Multi-layer is the highest performing, lowest-cost option,” Stielow claimed. Agri-Industrial’s fuel tanks have two virgin layers of high density polyethylene, two adhesive layers, an EVOH barrier layer and a regrind layer.

Agri-Industrial will install the new blow molder in its current 250,000-square-foot space in Fairfield and expects it to be running early in 2015. It also this spring will start an overall expansion, adding 100,000 square feet by summer for warehousing and future production requirements.

In addition to five Kautex multi-layer machines, Agri-Industrial runs 20 accumulator-head, extrusion blow molders for industrial applications. These machines have shot sizes ranging from three to 100 pounds, according to Stielow. Services offered include part and mold design, engineering and assembly.

The new Kautex blow molder is a KBSmart120 model with a single clamp and robotic parison transfer for high production efficiency. Its other Kautex machines are KB240 and KBSmart 61 models.

Richard K. Smith founded Agri-Industrial in 1978 and the company has been in the family since then. It employs 165 full-time in three shifts during five-or seven-day weeks. Stielow declined to provide annual sales figures but he estimated sales have been growing 20 percent a year since the company began rebounding in 2010 from the recent recession.


Comments

Blow molder invests in more coextrusion capacity

By Michael Lauzon
Correspondent

Published: February 20, 2014 3:19 pm ET
Updated: February 20, 2014 9:14 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Plastic products win Best of IBS awards

January 30, 2015 1:36 pm ET

LAS VEGAS — A year ago, inventor Jeremy Smith of Utah took his idea for an electrical outlet cover plate with LED lights on the bottom edge to...    More

Image

Plastics News Now: Losing weight with style, plastics in the Dragons' Den

January 29, 2015 6:00 am ET

A 19-year-old entrepreneur brings business to a U.K. injection molder after winning support on TV's Dragons' Den, auto suppliers combine...    More

Image

African equity fund invests in Kenya's General Plastics

January 28, 2015 4:24 pm ET

An African investment fund specializing in agriculture has invested in Kenyan packaging firm General Plastics Ltd. to provide funds to expand in the...    More

Image

Plastics help Volt hit new target

January 28, 2015 1:54 pm ET

The 2016 Volt, unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January, features a sportier exterior design — GM calls it...    More

Image

It's becoming a seller's market for plastics firms

January 27, 2015 11:37 am ET

The pace of plastics mergers and acquisitions activity slowed a bit in the second half of 2014 — but market watchers have high expectations for ...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Automotive: Innovation & Emerging Trends

This special report newly released by PN and sponsored by The Conair Group examines current trends in the use of plastics in automotive, materials innovations and the changing landscape. It includes a review of legislative/regulatory activity impacting vehicle development and lightweighting, market opportunities & challenges for mold and toolmakers, innovative design strategies being implemented by major OEMs and suppliers, as well as a review of key indicators in Canada, Mexico, Brazil and China.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Injection Molding Market Analysis & Processor Rankings

Plastics News BUNDLED package contains our in-depth Market Analysis of the Injection Molding segment. You will gain keen insight on current trends and our economic outlook.

As a BONUS this includes PN's updated 2014 database of North American Injection Molders RANKED by sales volume. Sort, merge, mail & prospect by end market, materials processed, region, # of plants and more.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events