Plastics News correspondent Frank Antosiewicz reported the following briefs from the MassPlastics trade show, held March 26-27 in Fitchburg, Mass.
Distributor displays Toyo electric press
Toyo distributor Maruka USA Inc. was exhibiting a Si series IV, 55-ton all-electric machine that was introduced six months ago.
``Toyo changed its toggle length so that now it is at a 7½-degree angle and it was built through the center of the platen,'' said Kevin Bruce, a territorial manager for Maruka. Rockaway, N.J.-based Maruka is a Toyo distributor.
The series is offered in a range of sizes from 20-750 tons.
Maruka officials said the units have smaller footprints and have been sold to a lot of medical molders for use in a clean room. They are primed for high-speed work.
One of its features is the use of environmentally friendly grease that reduces power consumption and noise.
Amid U.S. slowdown, Nissei pushes hybrids
Nissei America Inc. marketing team coordinator Nobu Kobayashi said he expects the slowdown in the U.S. market to bottom by the third quarter of 2008.
``I think the whole industry will slow down and you have to be prepared. We've focused on the larger machines so that the sales dollars will not decrease,'' he said.
Kobayashi also said the roll out of Anaheim, Calf.-based Nissei's PNX and FNX hybrid injection molding machines series offers molders another alternative.
He claimed the hybrids, which combine servomotor and hydraulic technologies, can offer energy savings comparable to all-electric machines.
Hopper's insulation helps save energy
Dri-Air Industries Inc. President Charles Sears was taking swings at a new energy-efficient hopper protected by a trademarked Tuff-Wrap polymeric insulation that was introduced at MassPlastics.
``A side benefit is that you can hit with a baseball bat,'' he said, noting that the machine is tougher than the straight-stainless-steel model.
The new model hopper still is stainless, but the outside is covered by the insulation.
Dri-Air, which is based in East Windsor, Conn., also introduced a single-shot feeder that can be used for small amounts of material.
Machine rebuilder finds niche growing
Thermoplastics Co. Inc. of Worcester, Mass., a company that specializes in repairing and upgrading injection molding machines, is growing slowly each year.
``Fifty- and 60-year-old machines are running in plants all over the country,'' said Greg Barsamian, machine and equipment salesman for Thermoplastics.
The company has 20 employees and operates a 60,000-square-foot facility in Worcester.
``Since 2001, at least three of our competitors are gone. There's very few of us left that do it,'' said Paul Tremblay, parts and rebuild salesman.
He said that the economic slowdown has put more used machines on the market, but the company still continues to do more repairs and update projects.