Italian injection molding machinery maker BMB SpA has made gaining exposure its priority at NPE2018.
The Brescia, Italy-based company, which got its start in 1967, made its formal introduction to the North American market in 2012 when it first exhibited at NPE.
NPE2018 will be BMB's third time exhibiting at the show.
From Booth W8565, the company is showing its eKW55Pi/7000 hybrid injection molding machine. The 550-metric-ton packaging press is all electric, but it relies on hydraulics to inject the plastic at a higher rate of speed.
The machine is producing a 5-gallon industrial pail made from high density polyethylene in a cycle time of 14 seconds. The mold design is from Canadian tool and mold maker Calframax Technologies Inc., based in Oldcastle, Ontario.
"Our angle is exposure and to try to attack the market for industrial pails by demonstrating this particular system," David Brown, area sales manager for BMB North America in Mississauga, Ontario, said during an open house event at the Calframax facility in April.
"The main goal is being able to demonstrate the capabilities of the machine and that we are as good as our competitors and in many cases better, we feel. But also to be sure that we get the name established, so that when we start to grow our market, people are familiar with the name, which makes … the sale process easier," he added.
BMB offers presses from 100 tonnes all the way up to 4,500 tonnes. In the U.S. and Canada, specifically, Brown said the "sweet spot" is between 250-2,500 tonnes. Top markets for the company include packaging, automotive and medical.
On the 550-tonne hybrid press at NPE, Brown said the Calframax mold is designed to run much faster than conventional molds that are built for plastic industrial pails, leading to about a "25 percent improvement of output in parts per hour."
Energy savings are also an added benefit for plastics processors.
"This [machine] uses a very low amount of energy per pail," Mike Urquhart, a consultant from Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, said during the open house. "People typically talk about how many kilowatt hours per kilogram of a molded part, and this is a very energy-efficient machine."
The 550-tonne press also requires less water to keep the machine cool because it doesn't have as much hydraulic oil, which normally heats up a machine, Brown explained.
"As compared to traditional molding machines producing a similar pail, this machine will yield power savings in the 36-38 percent range, while using significantly less cooling water to keep the machine cool," he said. "At the same time, the overall production cycle time is much faster, so the customer gains on productivity and cost of production."
Brown said BMB sold close to 10 of the 550-tonne machines in 2017, but "hopefully more after the show."
Over at Booth W943, BMB has a smaller hybrid machine on display. The exhibit is for high-speed robot maker CBW Automation Inc. The 350-tonne press is producing a lightweight margarine tub in conjunction with CBW and French mold maker Plastisud SA.
"The technology is known as injection/compression and allows producing the part in a much lighter weight than normal," Brown said.