ORLANDO, FLA. — First time NPE exhibitor L.K. Systems Inc.'s NPE display machine is still somewhere at sea. But the company magically made a machinery demonstration — just as originally planned — in Orlando.
“We had a machine slated to be delivered to the show on [March] 17th,” said Michael Smith, vice president of sales and marketing for North America during NPE. “It was delayed in transit on the sea. It probably will arrive in Miami on the 27th.”
NPE ended March 27.
It wasn't the West Coast port slowdown. “It's just the weather at sea.”
When Smith was notified of the delay about five weeks ago, he was on pins and needles. Charged to develop the North American market for Hong Kong-based injection molding machine maker L.K. Technology Holdings Inc., he incorporated L.K. Systems Inc. in Ladera Ranch, Calif., in October. He planned to make a grand debut at NPE with a machine on display.
Then he thought of Diamond Line Inc. in Akron, Ohio. The injection molder is L.K.'s first U.S. customer and also the exclusive sales agent for eXcel injection molding machinery in 13 Midwest states and western Pennsylvania.
Diamond Line received its L.K. machine, a 175 ton eXcel, in February.
At the time, in order to circumvent the West Coast port issues, L.K. Systems routed the machine from a factory in Ningbo, China, by ship to the port authority in Prince Rupert, B.C., then via train to Cleveland; and finally by truck to Akron.
Since the machine Smith planned to showcase at NPE is the same model press that Diamond Line just set up in Akron, Smith called to see he could take the Diamond Line machine to NPE.
Diamond Line's Shayne Bishop said his company had just started production on the machine.
“No sooner were we making parts, Michael called,” he said. Diamond Line had been running the machine for less than a week, Glenn Witchey added.
The machine is equipped with a 64-cavity medical mold by Cavaform Inc. of St. Petersburg, Fla.
“We've been able to run it very successfully at the show and the interest level has been very high,” Smith said.
Smith came to LK with decades of experience in the plastics machinery industry, including stints at Engel and Husky.
He said Diamond Line has a 175,000 square foot facility in Akron, and that gives L.K. a distribution point centrally located in the United States.