Ferry buys firm to make Quintax routers
STOW, OHIO — Ferry Industries Inc., a Stow builder of rotational molding machines, has purchased a router maker in nearby Canton, Ohio, to make Ferry's new Quintax brand of routers.
The 20-employee company, Canton Industrial Systems, will become part of a new Ferry subsidiary, Quintax Inc.
Ferry President W. Harry Covington Jr. said Ferry will continue to run the plant in Canton, making routers and trimmers.
``We're not going to make them in our Stow plant,'' he said.
Computer numerically controlled routers and trimmers automatically drill holes and trim large parts — normally a labor-intensive process. Ferry plans to sell Quintax equipment to its core rotomolder market, and also to thermoformers, blow molders, pattern manufacturers and the aerospace industry.
Terms were not disclosed.
Covington said Ferry plans to modernize Canton Industrial Systems' 41,000-square-foot building and add manufacturing equipment.
Ferry will sell three- and five-axis Quintax CNC routers.
Volunteer fireman pleads guilty in arson
ERIE, PA. — A former volunteer firefighter has pleaded guilty to setting fires at Munot Plastics Inc. and 15 other Erie-area businesses over a two-year period.
Millcreek Township Police attached a high-tech tracking device to the car of Bradley Bechtold, 24, and ``watched'' May 20 as he drove to the Munot thermoforming plant and then to the West Lake Volunteer Fire Department.
Munot President Chandler Reese said the suspect actually broke through a screen door in the back of his plant and set fire to plastic tarps covering machinery. Munot runs three shifts, and the factory was in operation at the time.
A worker noticed the fire and quickly put it out with a fire extinguisher, Reese said.
``It was pretty scary because we had propane tanks back there,'' Reese said in a Dec. 3 telephone interview.
Little damage was done to the plant, and police arrested Bechtold shortly afterward.
While no one was hurt in any of Bechtold's arson attacks, he could face 170 years in prison when he is sentenced on Feb. 12, according to local news reports. Bechtold pleaded guilty Nov. 18 to 24 counts, including four of arson.
Canadian molder acquires Brazil plant
TORONTO — Blow molder ABC Group of Toronto bought a manufacturing facility in Araras, Brazil, near SÃo Paulo, that it will convert to an automotive parts blow molding operation.
ABC has begun moving machinery to the new plant and soon will start production, a spokeswoman said. Eventually the Araras factory will expand its product lines to include under-the-hood components and interior, exterior air-management and fuel systems.
ABC Group do Brasil Ltda. brings the firm's global plant count to more than 30 in North America, Europe, Asia, and now South America.
RTP follows legal suit with capacity boost
WINONA, MINN. — RTP Co. plans to increase its long-fiber-reinforced thermoplastic compounding capacity and boost its research and development activity in that area in the wake of its recent court victory against LNP Engineering Plastics Inc.
A federal jury in Wilmington, Del., last month decided RTP had not infringed on three LNP patents surrounding LFRT production. The trial involving the two engineering resin compounders lasted nine days, including two days of jury deliberation.
``We felt that ... we would be able to prove that RTP Co. has always behaved both legally and properly in the conduct of its business,'' RTP Chief Executive Officer Hugh Miller said in a news release. ``We have continued to develop, manufacture and market our [LFRT] compounds during the long and expensive legal process.''
Officials at RTP of Winona said the company will expand LFRT production in Winona in 1999, but the number of new lines and resulting new jobs has yet to be determined. RTP's primary markets for LFRTs include automotive, industrial, sporting goods and consumer goods.
LNP of Exton, Pa., claims to control 35-40 percent of the global LFRT market, which is estimated at about $75 million a year.
RTP holds less than 5 percent of that market, according to LNP.
Based on sales, each company ranks among the top 25 U.S. plastics compounders, according to a recent study by Frost & Sullivan of Mountain View, Calif.