Vision Plastics Inc. of Wilsonville, Ore., has created a non-traditional, fireproof mold-storage room with security doors.
The custom injection molder established the room as part of its “continued efforts to reduce our customers' risk in case of a major incident,” said President Brian Stevens. Currently, Vision stores about 1,000 customer-owned molds.
Members of the Vision Plastics staff and a building contractor developed the project.
The three-month process, including October construction, transformed 4,000 square feet within Vision's 75,000-square-foot facility.
While Vision withholds the dollar investment, Stevens said the cost “was substantial, but a small price compared to the millions of dollars of tooling it protects.”
The fireproof technology is “used all over in commercial building construction, but we have never used it in an application to protect mold bases,” said Darin Hirte, project manager and estimator with general contractor Brockamp & Jaeger Inc. of Oregon City, Ore.
Hirte said the room was built to one-hour fire-rating specifications of Underwriters Laboratories Inc.
A 10-ton-capacity, CES/Gaffney bridge crane with a Shaw-Box electric hoist can access 2,200 square feet of the room. An 8-ton-capacity Crown powered pallet jack is used for large-tool staging.
Previously, Vision stored molds in part of the space, with the remainder used for some of its warehousing requirements.
“This was a win-win situation because it forced us to become even more organized in our warehouse to make up for the smaller space, plus we got a larger mold-storage area,” Stevens said.
Vision and the Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue organization developed a contingency plan to minimize damage and exposure to water and, if required, to extricate molds from the room.
Vision employs 150 in Wilsonville, operating 49 presses, with clamping forces of 18-950 tons. Its stable includes 39 electrics and 10 hydraulics. The firm primarily supplies makers of data-storage devices, medical equipment, and test and measurement apparatus.
Stevens projects Vision's 2012 sales will increase about 10 percent over the previous year.
Vision has equity in Hong Kong Precision Co. Ltd., an injection molding and assembly operation in Shenzhen, China.
Stevens became president of Vision Plastics on June 1, succeeding John Normandin, who retired after 17 years with the company. Stevens was a partner and mold maker at Stevens Tool and Die prior to joining Vision as engineering manager in 2008. He was appointed vice president in 2010 while continuing to oversee the engineering department.
Stevens' father, Ronald, continues as CEO of Vision Plastics.