Blako Industries adds blown film line
DUNDRIDGE, OHIO — Blako Industries Inc. will install a new blown film line to help it capitalize on value-added film and bag applications.
The Dundridge-based firm bought a three-layer Varex line from Windmoeller & Hoelscher Corp. of Lincoln, R.I., and plans to install it in September. Neither Blako President Ed Long nor the machinery supplier disclosed the purchase price.
Long said in a telephone interview that his firm also bought a 3,500-square-foot plant adjacent to Blako's current facility to expand warehouse space. Blako's manufacturing facility is big enough to accommodate the new line. The film system, with 63-inch lay-flat capability, will be Blako's second that includes W&H's Optifil P gauging system.
Blako extrudes polyethylene and nylon resins for food-service, laminating and printing markets, and converts film to bags. Long said the W&H line will allow his firm to expand sales of laminating films.
Blako reported sales of $8.7 million for the year ended Sept. 30.
Omni faucet turns from brass to ABS
HAMMOND, IND. — In a health-related switch, Omni Corp. is offering to exchange a brass faucet with a plastic version on a discontinued line of residential water filters.
Concerns that brass could add lead to drinking water prompted the Hammond-based filter maker to offer faucets made of a high-impact ABS.
Omni is inviting customers who bought its OT-2 model water filter to call a toll-free number to arrange the swap.
While Omni normally produces its own plastic parts, an undisclosed custom molder is supplying the replacement faucet, according to a company spokeswoman. Omni also announced it plans to manufacture a new line of plastic faucets in-house.
The company produces a line of lead-reducing water filters. Its own Web site explains the hazards of lead in drinking water and lists brass fittings and faucets as a possible source of the heavy metal.
RXI targets Indiana for molding plant
LOS ANGELES—RXI Plastics plans to establish its seventh facility, in leased space in Plainfield, Ind.
``We are negotiating at this point with the landlord and local government,'' Michael Farahnik, RXI vice president, said in a July 2 telephone interview.
The molder of proprietary and customized products anticipates starting with 30 employees in Plainfield and possibly beginning operations in February.
RXI may take about 105,000 square feet of a 400,000-square-foot building owned by an Indianapolis developer. It has applied to Plainfield for a tax abatement.
During 1997, the company relocated a California operation to Valencia from Sun Valley and added 23,000 square feet to a 160,000-square-foot facility in Triadelphia, W.Va.
RXI injection molds and injection blow molds polyethylene, polypropylene, PET and polystyrene into closures, sifters, nozzles, dispensers and food and spice bottles and jars.
RXI, a unit of Los Angeles-based RXI Holdings Inc., ranked 24th in Plastics News' survey of North American blow molders, with estimated sales of $78.4 million.
Spectrum spending $4.5 million to move
ANSONIA, CONN.—Injection molder Spectrum Plastics Inc. is investing $4.5 million for an expandable, 66,000-square-foot facility on 12.7 acres in Ansonia.
Spectrum has been ``limited in the last couple years by building size,'' President Pierre Dziubina said by telephone. Another $1 million is allocated ``for outfitting the building and new equipment.''
Construction began in early May and should be completed in December. Spectrum will move two miles from its current 27,000-square-foot building and a second, 10,000-square-foot off-site location, both in Ansonia.
Now employing 88, Spectrum has added 10 people in quality, engineering and molding functions in anticipation of the move and expects to hire more.
Engineers are designing the fourth generation of Spectrum's reel-to-reel system. A 50-ton Nissei press will arrive in September and another in December, giving the firm 16 reel-to-reel systems.
Within the past year, Spectrum has acquired one 165-ton and four 110-ton Cincinnati Milacron Roboshot presses as upgrade replacements for five other presses. It operates 45 machines, with clamping forces of 28-170 tons. The new facility can accommodate as many as 70 machines.
Dziubina expects this year's sales, hampered by the constricted operating space, to match those of $12.5 million for the fiscal year ended Oct. 31.
Vanguard bagging Canadian business
ST. LOUIS — Vanguard Plastics Inc. has opened an office in Markham, Ontario, to boost plastic bag sales in Canada.
Vanguard, based in St. Louis, will supply Canada mainly from plants in St. Louis and Richmond, Va., said Richard Grubb, general manager of Vanguard Plastics Canada Inc. It will supply high density polyethylene and coextruded bags for retail and grocery markets.
Grubb said Vanguard hopes to establish a Canadian film and bag production site within two to three years if business warrants it. The firm might build a new operation, or it could make an acquisition to manufacture in Canada. Vanguard's push in Canada will increase bag competition. HDPE bag makers include Atlantic Packaging Products Ltd. of Scarborough, Ontario, and imports from the U.S. are significant.
Vanguard is one of the largest bag producers in the United States. It has seven manufacturing plants and recorded sales of about $200 million for the year ended June 30, 1997.