Jacobson designs tailgate toolbox
LONG BEACH, CALIF. — Custom injection molder Jacobson Plastics Inc. is having commercial success with an impact-resistant toolbox for mounting in pairs on the tailgate of a pickup truck or sport utility vehicle.
``It took us several months to engineer the plastic and the tool'' after the inventive idea surfaced last summer, President Jeff Jacobson said in an interview at the firm's Long Beach plant. ``When you push the tailgate up, the toolbox is not occupying any space in the bed, [and] when you lay it down, you have a nice workstation.''
Corner screws attach the 4-inch-thick side-by-side black or gray units to the bed side of a tailgate.
The toolbox needed structural strength ``to withhold, say, a 300-pound man who kneels on the tailgate in 30-below temperature while ice fishing in Minnesota,'' Jacobson said.
The answer was Montell Polyolefins' 30 percent glass-reinforced olefinic/styrenic Hivalloy G resin with an impact modifier and ultraviolet stabilizers.
Jacobson molds the toolbox in a single cavity on a 1,150-ton Battenfeld press. ``Every time we run a set, we have to take four shots,'' he said.
The per-pair list price is $99, though Kmart stores offered a $69 special in an illustrated national promotion in May. Steelhorse Automotive Accessories Inc. in Compton, Calif., advertises the toolbox in its catalog.
``We filled their pipeline quickly and are seeing reorders,'' said Ken Dargis, Hivalloy business director in Wilmington, Del.
Jacobson has an ownership interest in Steelhorse and a major responsibility for molding many other products for the mail-order house. Jacobson Plastics occupies 30,000 square feet in Long Beach, and operates 14 injection molding machines with clamping forces of 80-1,150 tons.
Duopac Plastics LLC changes hands, name
PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. — Duopac Plastics LLC of Plattsburgh and Duopac International of Vaudreuil, Quebec, changed names and ownership May 1.
The blow molding businesses had been owned in a 50-50 partnership between Heinz Weber and Richard Dube. Dube relinquished his ownership to Weber as part of a previously arranged business agreement.
Duopac Plastics now will do business as Weber International Packaging Co. LLC. The firm employs 42 and ranked 151st in Plastics News' 1998 ranking of North American blow molders, with $2.4 million in sales.
Duopac International will do business as Weber International Packaging Corp. It employs about 40 and expects to post sales of $2.5 million to $3 million in 1999.
Dube will continue to operate Duopac Packaging Inc., a PET stretch film blow molder based in Pointe-Claire, Quebec. Duopac Packaging, which employs 130, ranked 69th in the same PN ranking, with $15.9 million in blow molding sales.
Duopac Packaging, which was operated separately from Duopac Plastics and Duopac International, is owned by Dube and several partners.
Plastic cleat maker doing contract work
MARLBOROUGH, MASS. — MacNeill Engineering Worldwide Inc., a captive injection molder best known for its line of plastic Champ athletic shoe cleats and spikes, wants to expand its custom molding work.
The Marlborough company opened a contract manufacturing division in April to market its capabilities, including injection molding, insert molding, and two-color molding.
The family-owned business, founded in 1931, operates from two manufacturing facilities — one in Laconia, N.H., and the Marlborough headquarters plant.
The firm designs and manufactures cleats and spikes for golf, baseball, football, soccer, track, and logging footwear. MacNeill said its cleat industry is growing steadily and reported record sales for last year, though the company declined to give figures. The firm employs 300.
MacNeill's machinery lineup includes rotary insert presses from 40-90 tons, and two-color rotary presses and horizontal rotary presses with clamping forces of 85-300 tons. The company has not bought additional machines to handle the custom business, but will do so if the need arises.
MacNeill is ISO 9001 certified.