Plastics News reporters Bill Bregar and Craig Urey gathered these new product announcements at the National Hardware Show and the National Building Products Exposition, held Aug. 10-13 at Chicago's McCormick Place.
Coleman flashlight touts sturdy housing
A new super-strong flashlight from Coleman Co. Inc. has a crush resistance of up to 650 pounds, thanks to its composite housing.
The flashlight has a graphite housing, according to Coleman literature. A spokesman said an off-shore supplier injection molds the body from an engineering resin, but he could not provide more details.
The graphite flashlights also feature polycarbonate lenses and reflectors. Suggested retail price is $8.99 and $14.99, for the two sizes of flashlights.
Coleman, of Wichita, Kan., also showed its new Extreme Cooler, which the company said has the thickest insulated walls in the industry.
The 32-quart cooler can keep ice for five days in 90§ F heat. It sells for $34.99.
Step2 Co. introduces a number of products
Step2 Co. of Streetsboro, Ohio, showed several new products, all rotational molded from polyethylene.
The SportSeat is a wheeled seat with a molded-in back support, and storage underneath for food, drinks and other game-day necessities such as blankets. Retail price is $25-$30.
A Sports Caddy holds golf bags upright. Three molded-in shelves hold shoes, balls and other accessories.
Big Bubba, an 80-gallon container on four wheels, can hold three bags of trash or sports equipment. Bubba retails for $50-$60.
Serve & Store, a table with shelves, can be used for entertaining on the patio or as a garage work space. It retails between $70-$80.
Step2 also has improved its Grass Hopper, a seat on wheels for gardening, with a deluxe model that sports a longer wheelbase and wooden handles to help you get up and down. Retail price range is $30-$35.
Step2 also has expanded its line of planters. They have a contoured inside surface, so the planters require 75 percent less soil than traditional planters of the same size, according to the company.
Cooper Hand Tools' handle holds color
The Cooper Hand Tools Division of Cooper Industries Inc. showed a hammer with a fiber-reinforced handle.
Although Cooper declined to identify the parts suppliers, a spokesman said the handle consists of a pultruded composite rod.
A glass-filled nylon coating is overmolded onto the rod in an injection molding step.
Cooper already had a composite-handled hammer, but the new coated handle gives better color consistency and a different look, the spokesman said.
Cooper is based in Raleigh, N.C.
Placon Corp. shows reclosable package
Madison, Wis.-based thermoformer Placon Corp. introduced Snap-Pak, a reclosable package with a hinged backer card recessed into a high-clarity platform blister.
Unlike a traditional blister pack, the backer card is secured with a full seal along the bottom half, with tack welds on either side of the top. Only the two welds at the top of the card release when the package is opened.
Placon said the Snap-Pak is much thinner than traditional blister packs.
Suncast Corp. unveils garden hose carts
Batavia, Ill.-based Suncast Corp. introduced 20 new reel carts for garden hoses, including an expansion of its line of steel core carts.
The carts combine a steel core tube with a body made of graphite-reinforced polyethylene. Information on the type of plastic, and the molder, were not available.
Suggested retail price is $59.99.
Suncast also showed the Gardening Center for working with plants and flowers.
The large cart on wheels sports an interchangeable shelf, bin and grid.
Retail price is $129.99.
San Marcos, Calif.-based Structron Corp. showed eight new tools with fiber-reinforced plastic handles, which Structron pultrudes. The products include a scoop-type shovel, a trenching shovel, a come-along, a splitting maul, a scoop, a pole saw for tree trimming, a ropeless tree pruner and a 24-inch street broom with plastic bristles.
Wiremold Co. showed its white conduit for the home that carries wires and cables along the surface of a wall, eliminating clutter and the need to put wires inside the wall. Plastics-related details about the on-wall wiring product were not available for this report.
Koller-Craft Plastic Products showed an all-plastic clip that holds small flashlights to the bill of a cap, freeing both of a person's hands for work around the house. Koller, a division of Koller Enterprises Inc., injection molds the polypropylene clip-on flashlight holder at its headquarters factory in Fenton, Mo.
Injection molder Bemis Manufacturing Co. of Sheboygan Falls, Wis., showed two new planters, the Boulder Collection and the Mexico Collection. Boulder planters feature a controlled-watering system. Bemis Manufacturing said they should retail from $3-$15. The Mexico line is designed for use on patios or decks. That line has a suggested retail price of $10-$28.