By June, injection molder UPM Inc. is to install and operate its 23rd machine, a 1,500-ton Cincinnati Milacron press.
The Baldwin Park, Calif., company acquired a reconditioned 484-ton press in mid-1996 when its board authorized expenditure of $2.5 million for added molding equipment and robotics.
This month, UPM is adding products for agriculture and retail-display applications. The two new products will maintain the company's market diversity, said Mike Ashleigh, sales manager.
UPM molds outdoor patio furniture, swimming pool pumps and filters, consumer products, housewares, exercise equipment and automotive parts.
If the new business continues as anticipated, UPM plans by mid-1997 to add another 720-ton molding machine. The company has 15 injection presses in the 350- to 720-ton range, and seven machines from 720-2,000 tons.
The 35-year-old firm is looking seriously at using the gas-assist process. In February, Gain Technologies of Sterling Heights, Mich., tried different applications on three of UPM's machines and has proposed several equipment packages that UPM is reviewing.
``We are trying to decide how quick the payback will be,'' Ashleigh said.
UPM employs 135, uses about 18 million pounds of resin annually and, for the year ended Sept. 30, recorded sales of $20.7 million, up from $18.9 million in the previous year.
It occupies a 100,000-square-foot facility in Baldwin Park, and has significant operations in glass-filled molding and assembly.