Mold maker Cavaform International LLC has opened a sister company, Modern Technical Molding & Development LLC, to help customers start up medical molding projects and develop new products.
MTM&D is a dedicated operation for qualifying molds, duplicating a customer's processing conditions as much as possible, according to Chuck Massie, co-owner of Cavaform.
Modern Technical Molding is located in a 22,000-square-foot building next to Cavaform's mold plant in St. Petersburg, Fla. Cavaform moved its five injection presses, with clamping forces from 75-375 metric tons, and all mold test equipment over to MTM&D, which can handle mold sampling, and molding to help customers bring out new products.
In some cases they actually will send their own molding machines into our facility, particularly if it's a new program, Massie said.
Modern Technical Molding has set up pre-wired, pre-plumbed stations for customer presses. We set the press down on the floor, and we plug and play, said David Outlaw, vice president of operations.
Massie and Outlaw discussed MTM&D in an interview at the Plastics News Executive Forum in Tampa.
Massie said medical molders need everything right from the start of production to run their molds properly.
What we've seen is, in order to qualify with some of the [Food and Drug Administration] standards, and their due diligence, they're wanting to have more and more molds qualified in the final machine their product is going to run in. And the best way to do that is, obviously, in their own facility. But quite often they don't have the time or the staff to do that as fast, or as effectively as they would like, he said.
Cavaform makes molds for a number of medical products, including pipettes, vials, test tubes and centrifuge tubes. We specifically design the mold to fit their machine, Massie said.
Molding customers send teams to MTM&D, which has offices they can use. They can run tests, develop process parameters and document the mold, then take parts back to their companies for further testing. The facility also can help customers integrate automation and part handling.
We replicate, as much as they wish, their manufacturing environment, Massie said.
This year, Massie said, the company plans to add two dual-purpose machines that run liquid silicone rubber and thermoplastic. Cavaform makes LSR molds. Those presses could be used for overmolding LSR onto plastic, he said.
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