Custom injection molder Bright Plastics Inc. has added a two-shot injection molding machine at its corporate manufacturing center in Greensboro, N.C.
The company invested about $250,000 in the all-electric, 140-ton Nissei NEX press, plus auxiliary equipment, including a Mold-Masters E-Multi injection unit. The E-Multi unit can be unhooked, so the machine can be used as a standard molding machine or equipped onto other presses.
The machine will be used to mold retail parts for the entertainment industry, according to Joe Vest, vice president of engineering at Bright Plastics.
"We've never had a part, or parts, that had the volume that would justify a dedicated machine and investing in it," Vest said in a phone interview.
"This was an opportunity that will consume 50-60 percent of the available machine time for a year, and so it justified actually spending the extra money and doing this as a full two-shot machine vs. two molds and an overmold operation," he added.
With two-shot injection molding, Bright Plastics can combine multiple colors and materials into a single automated process for various applications in the medical, consumer products, outdoor recreation, telecommunications and defense industries.
The addition of the two-shot press is a starting point for more investments this year by the company, too. Bright Plastics is bringing in another 500-ton injection molding machine that will serve a customer in the telecommunications industry. That press should be up and running later this year, Vest said.
The company also plans to invest between $175,000-$250,000 in an expansion of its white room area, a controlled environment that houses its Class 7, ISO-compliant clean room.
"We're looking to double that later this year," Vest said.
Bright Plastics has 31 injection molding machines at its corporate manufacturing center and headquarters in Greensboro. It has nine injection molding machines and an extrusion line at its manufacturing and logistics hub, also in Greensboro.
Press tonnages range from 40-1,550 tons across the two locations, though the manufacturing and logistics hub specifically houses the large-tonnage machines — ones that are between 720-1,550 tons, Vest said.
The company ranks No. 237 on Plastics News' annual listing of North American injection molders, with estimated sales of $22 million in 2018. It employs around 170.