PARKERSBURG, W.VA.-Ames Lawn & Garden Tools Inc. of Parkersburg has purchased Southeastern Plastics Inc. of Byesville, Ohio, an injection molder that will double Ames' capacity to produce molded parts. Terms were not disclosed. Ames, one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of nonpower tools in North America, already does blow and injection molding at its own facility in Elyria, Ohio. However, Rick Keup, president and chief executive officer of Ames, said in a statement announcing the deal that Southeastern's modern machinery will enhance his company's capabilities. Southeastern operates a 2,000-ton injection press at Byesville and an unspecified number of other machines.
Ames plans to expand the Byesville site, which currently employs 160, and will continue to operate Southeastern's custom molding business with its existing customers.
Wheaton restarts fire-damaged unit
MAYS LANDING, N.J. - Wheaton Plastics Products Inc. of Mays Landing planned on May 5 in Cayey, Puerto Rico, to rededicate production floor space lost to a raging fire there nearly 15 months ago.
Despite the destruction of one of two manufacturing floors in the Feb. 14, 1994, blaze, Wheaton's Cayey plant continued manufacturing 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with no loss of service, according to Puerto Rico facility sales manager Andy Bermudez. That plant caters primarily to the pharmaceutical container market.
Bermudez said injection blow molding, injection molding and extrusion blow molding has been accomplished in the interim with 27 machines on the undamaged production floor. The rebuilt facility, with just less than 3,500 square feet of production space, has 40 percent more production capacity than before the blaze. In time, Wheaton plans to add another 22 machines.
Linpac offers $21 million for Ropak stake
BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - Linpac Mouldings Ltd. of Birmingham announced a tentative agreement May 3 to buy nearly 2 million shares of Ropak Corp., a Fullerton, Calif.-based manufacturer of plastic pails and materials-handling containers.
The offer of $11 per share would total about $21.7 million. Upon completion of the purchase, Linpac will own more than 90 percent of the outstanding common stock of Ropak.
The privately held Linpac makes a variety of plastic, paper, and metal packaging products.
Pipe malfunction blamed for Dow leak
PLAQUEMINE, LA. - Dow Chemical Co.'s vinyl chloride operation in Plaquemine leaked three gases into the air when a pipe malfunctioned April 28.
The pipe released a mixture of hydrochloric acid, ethylene dichloride and vinyl chloride, according to Gerry Daigre, spokesman for Dow's Louisiana division. Both materials are used in vinyl chloride production, but Daigre would not say if the pipe leak had affected production.
There were no injuries or evacuations, he said.
Daigre said Dow still was investigating the leak, but noted that one of the tubes in the unit's heat exchanger, which reduces the temperature of processed gas, may have failed.
Patent lawsuit nets eastman $12 million
GREENEVILLE, TENN. - A federal jury has awarded Eastman Chemical Co. of Kingsport, Tenn., $12 million from Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. and Shell Oil Co. in a patent infringement lawsuit.
The jury in Greeneville made the award April 28. As previously reported, the court ruled that Goodyear of Akron, Ohio, and Shell of Houston had infringed on Eastman's patent on technology to produce PET, but had not done so willfully. Eastman reportedly had sought $17 million.
OAR Moldworks expands in Providence
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - OAR Moldworks/Tool & Die recently completed a facility expansion and renovation of its plant in Providence at a cost of $500,000.
OAR Vice President C. Andrew Rosenholm said the firm had purchased a 10,000-square-foot building adjacent to its original 9,000-square-foot plant, then connected the two and renovated them to accommodate expanded production capabilities.
The 28-employee firm increased its computer numerically controlled and electric discharge machining capabilities with the addition of new equipment in those departments, and recently installed a new management information software program for job tracking. The company also added a 210-ton Mitsubishi molding press for mold tryouts.
OAR specializes in molds for companies in the toy, medical and camera industries. It also independently produces golf-ball molds using a proprietary process.