C&J Industries Inc. is investing $700,000 to add six all-electric Toshiba injection molding presses and make other improvements at its Meadville, Pa., plant.
The installation and setup of the machines is nearly complete, according to marketing manager Mark Fuhrman. He said the company is adding machines with clamping forces of 20, 65, 110 and 390 tons.
``It's our first venture into all-electrics, but it is something we wanted to do,'' said Fuhrman, noting that the additions are expected to cut production costs.
As part of the same project, the company has expanded a controlled-environment area in the plant. The area is not a certified clean room, but can be used for cosmetic and medical applications that need a cleaner space.
Overall, the medical-device market has grown to provide 40 percent of the company's sales, according to Fuhrman. He said overall sales are up 13 percent over last year.
The firm is best known for providing parts for the Segway human transporter, said Fuhrman, but C&J has been certified by the Food and Drug Administration to make medical devices for 20 years. He said the firm has carved a niche in producing micro-fluidics.
C&J works in a lot of other areas as well, such as automotive, consumer products, business machines, electronics and telecommunications.
C&J operates out of a 150,000-square-foot facility and has a 30,000-square-foot tool shop in the same town. It employs 275.
Fuhrman said the new investment replaces a few older machines, but also gives the firm new capacity. The company now has 52 presses, ranging from 20-720 tons.
The company started in 1962 as a mold builder. Founder Dick Johnston still serves as chairman. Dennis Frampton is president.