A new company in Apex, N.C., has formed to specialize in research and development work, with small runs of specialty elastomeric film and sheet.
Pacrim Inc. offers small to medium research and development programs, charging $2,000 or more per day, plus raw materials costs, and turnaround in as little as two to three weeks. The firm, which started business last year, also can produce blown film or extruded sheet from 3-100 mils.
Pacrim is equipped with blown film machines, flat-die extruders, injection molding equipment, reaction injection molding machines, thermoforming and radio-frequency welding.
"I think all this is unique," Phillip Rorabaugh, business and technical manager at Pacrim, said in a telephone interview. "We have diversity in materials and can do so many things to the materials such as laminating, vacuum forming and thermoforming. The goal is to take a concept, then use processing techniques or make specific dies for the equipment to make a product that didn't exist before."
Rorabaugh worked in the polyurethane processing industry for 30 years. He noted that Pacrim can process PU film and sheet, plus thermoplastic materials including polyester, polyamide, styrenics, polyolefins, polypropylene, thermoplastic elastomers and some engineering plastics.
In addition, the company boasts proprietary formulation technology to help customers create new products.
"With our special labs and equipment designed to handle polymers in quantities as small as 50 pounds, we can focus on providing a full range of services to those firms who, until now, had nowhere else to turn or [had to] wait 10-12 weeks in line to get any product-development work done," Rorabaugh said.
The company has eight technical experts with more than 60 combined years of experience in film and sheet work. Pacrim handled about 96 projects last year in its 45,000-square-foot, leased facility.