H&L Sales has adopted a new name that reflects its expanded custom injection molding operation in Grand Rapids.
Now called H&L Advantage Inc., the company, which was an insert molder and distributor of plastic parts for the furniture industry, has branched into straight injection molding. Since last summer, H&L has purchased five injection molding presses, with clamping forces of 50-300 tons. Two of those machines, 85-ton and 230-ton Van Dorn Demags, were installed in December and a 300-ton Van Dorn Demag was added in January, said Brad Alkema, H&L president and co-owner. He would not disclose the investment.
The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based firm added 2,500 square feet to accommodate the new presses, giving it a total of 17,500 square feet of manufacturing space, Alkema said recently by telephone. A separate, 4,000-square-foot building in Grand Rapids houses corporate offices and sales.
H&L's main business is injection molding such products as bearings and decorative pieces for furniture, but it also will mold components for the automotive and appliance markets, among others.
For more than 25 years, H&L strictly made insert molded parts for furniture, such as polypropylene or nylon knobs overmolded in soft vinyl. It also distributed, for that industry, injection molded parts, vacuum formed PVC laminates, extrusions and screw machine components.
Alkema said the company made the change ``to have more direct control in relationships with the customers.''
He said H&L wants to boost sales by 10-15 percent this year, but he would not disclose sales.
Alkema's brother-in-law and H&L vice president Larry Hobbie co-owns the firm.