Custom injection molder Bright Plastics is boosting its large-part business with installation of a new all-electric, 1,550-ton injection molding machine.
The installation is the latest in an expansion program in which Bright bought seven new injection molding presses and rebuilt four, Bright President and co-owner Kirk Sparks said in a phone interview. In the past 18 months, Bright invested about $3.2 million in expansion, including robots, and more investments are on the way.
"A significant part of Bright Plastics' growth is a steady increase in customers who request large injection molded products," Sparks explained.
Bright bought an all-electric Ube Ultima UN 1550 press and put it in its Greensboro, N.C., manufacturing and logistics operation, which houses most of its large presses. He said demand for large parts is among diverse industries.
"The 1550, offering a wide platen that's equivalent to a 2,000-ton hydraulic machine, is specifically designed to mold large parts," Sparks pointed out.
With the new press, Bright installed a Wittmann W853, five-axis robot. The multifunctional robot initially will be used to move finished product from the injection press to the sorting and packaging area.
The new press is Bright's largest and one of the biggest all-electrics on the market, according to Sparks. Its features and efficiency are environmentally beneficial and help speed up production and reduce costs. He said all-electrics are more energy-efficient than conventional injection presses and they offer shorter part cycle times and lower scrap rates.
Bright's next largest press, a 1,220-tonner, is popular and running around the clock.
"To meet demand, we have another 1,220-ton machine on the way. We're also adding a 100-ton electric machine and two more 40-ton machines."
These upcoming installations will boost Bright's press count to 36 machines with a clamp range of 40 to 1,550 tons.
Bright's Corporate Manufacturing Center, its second factory in Greensboro, houses most of its smaller presses. The two 40-tonners planned will largely mold disposable medical products.
The company uses MuCell nitrogen-assisted molding technology for parts requiring dimensional stability and with unusual designs. Bright is certified to the ISO 9001:2008 standard, and its medical business is supported by its ISO 13485-2003 certification. Bright's staff includes RJG-trained master molders and toolmakers for its in-house mold shop. Secondary services encompass decoration, including in-mold labeling, assembly and retail packaging.
The two Greensboro facilities have total manufacturing space of 180,000 square feet and employ more than 180. A rail system and five silos feed resin to the operations. The firm's major markets range from consumer goods to medical to aerospace.