SALT LAKE CITY - In an area flush with proprietary molders, mainly in the medical disposable products industry, custom molders often have a difficult time thriving. Not so with Utah Plastics Group Inc., a 2-year-old custom injection molder in Salt Lake City that recently expanded its capabilities again. Two weeks ago, UPG installed a new press, from Toshiba Machine Co. America, with 310 tons of clamping force. UPG President Ritchie Crabb said that in the past year the company has added five new presses, and now operates 10, with clamping forces of 90-500 tons, all from Toshiba.
Six portable clean rooms added recently give UPG the ability to do overflow molding from several of the many medical original equipment manufacturers in the area.
Plans call for the company to build its own facility this year, complete with built-in clean room molding, to expand in that end market. The company now has 17 full-time and six part-time employees, and offers subassembly operations.
Another company in which Crabb is a partner, Intermoun-tain Plastics Inc., a proprietary molder of caps for the water bottle industry, also has expansion plans. Crabb said the company plans to build additional molds this year and increase capacity at the Midvale, Utah, facility.
Intermountain Plastics was founded in August to break out proprietary molding from the custom molding business.
Crabb said his injection molding business grew out of Richpak Inc., a company he helped start four years ago that performed induction lining of caps and closures. Customers began asking Crabb if he also would do the molding.
Intermountain Plastics now operates with five injection presses.