B&H Tool Co. LLC of San Marcos, Calif., is gaining market traction in designing and engineering precision tooling for plastics extrusion applications.
For its flow analytics process, the B&H team uses real-time data, computer-generated models and advanced flow simulation software from Mentor Graphics Corp.
Recent B&H projects involve dual corrugated tubing, multi-layer heads, customized deflectors for an existing head and micro-extrusion tooling for an electronics application, Peter Neville, managing partner, said in an interview. “We do simulation before cutting metal.”
Since installing a B&H die, the processing group for BASF Corp.'s North American performance materials research-and-development laboratory in Wyandotte, Mich., reports improvements.
“We are seeing a significant reduction in the amount of scrap generated while running multi-layer applications” using thermoplastic polyurethanes and nylons, BASF said in a statement. “We are developing materials for multi-layer hose designs that incorporate different wall thicknesses,” BASF said. “Our previous die was designed for a 50/50 uniform wall distribution. We just couldn't consistently achieve the results we were targeting with our old die without constantly tweaking the process, which led to high scrap rates, so we reached out to B&H for assistance. Our target wall thickness ratio was 15:1, which we were easily able to achieve with the new deflectors.”
Another plastics processor noted that its B&H tool for multi-layer extrusion “ran right out of the gate. We immediately saw higher quality product coming off this tooling.” The customer went through the design process and used B&H Flow Analytics for advanced flow simulation.
B&H was founded in 1967 in Bridgeport, Conn., and relocated to San Marcos in 1987.
Neville acquired the business in 1994 and recapitalized it in October 2013 with an investment from John Ulcej of Colfax, Wis., a veteran in extrusion tooling design and manufacturing.
B&H Tool employs 11, occupies 4,700 square feet and manufactures extrusion dies and related tooling for annular dies primarily for wire and cable coating, tubing, rod, corrugated tubing, hose and pipe applications. Products include crossheads and in-line dies.
B&H's 2015 sales were about 25 percent higher than those in 2014, Neville said. “Our goal for 2016 is for growth of at least 30 percent.”