October 2008

Close-Up on Technology

Novel Ejector System Eliminates Plates and Pins
Injection mold cost savings, greater molding productivity, and better part quality are promised for a new ejection system that does away with conventional ejector plates, housings, pins, and risers. This approach is said to reduce mold height, shorten mold-open times by at least 10%, enable better optimization of mold cooling—not to mention eliminating ejector marks on parts.

Novel Liquid Modifiers for Polyolefins Have Multiple Functions
A family of liquid polymer modifiers with a proven track record in EPDM compounds has been expanded for use in a broad range of polyolefins.

Processor's Edge

Thermoset Molder Closes the Loop On Mold Temperature Control
Vernay Laboratories Inc. of Yellow Springs, Ohio, is a major producer of precision rubber fluid-control components at four plants in the U.S. and Europe. “In rubber molding, the temperature of the mold is the heart of the process, so maintaining a uniform thermal profile across the tool is vital,” says Ankur Maheshwari, program manager at the Griffin, Ga., plant, Vernay’s biggest in North America.The company was having a big problem controlling temperature uniformity in production of a special gasket seal used in printer cartridges.

Starting Up

Your Business In Brief - October 2008
First Car with 100% Paint-Film-Decorated Thermoplastic ExteriorWhat is purported to be the world’s first vehicle featuring a Class-A exterior produced entirely of thermoformed plastics with a laminated paint-film decorative surface will also be the first vehicle designed specifically for law enforcement.

Your Business Outlook - October 2008
Like all segments of the U.S. residential building materials market, production of rigid PVC fence and decking products is down from last year’s level.

Your Business Pricing Update - October 2008
At press time in mid-October, the impact of Hurricane Ike on Gulf Coast refineries and resin plants was still being assessed.

Your Business Recycle Pricing - October 2008
Lower crude oil prices in recent weeks were expected to lead to lower virgin resin prices, which should bring down prices of recycled resins as well. But all bets are off until the damage from Hurricane Ike can be assessed.


Find Those ‘Hidden Costs’ And Do Something About Them
The lead-off speaker at our Processing Conference & Workshop in Chicago at the end of this month asks an important question: “What is your old auxiliary equipment costing you?” In other words, what is it costing you not to replace it?

High-Speed Extrusion: Are You Ready for the Fast Lane?
Around three dozen, mostly European, processors are pushing commercial development of high-speed single-screw extrusion. They have installed more than 100 of the small hyper-drive machines whose screws turn at up to 1500 rpm, about eight to 10 times faster than standard extruders. At least two German machine builders are working on machines that will go to 2000 rpm and even higher. The goal is to raise output without increasing extruder size.

Wind Power Blades Energize Composites Manufacturing
The world’s growing appetite for wind energy is transforming wind blades into one of the hottest composite applications around. The huge build-up of wind-power generating capacity—particularly in the U.S, China, and Spain—has raised a bumper crop of new plants for manufacturing these composite parts.

Keeping Up With Technology

‘Heavyweight’ Compounds For Personal Care Items
A family of “heavyweight” compounds offers an alternative to metal in personal-care applications where the heft of metal is desirable.

All-Electric Machines for General-Purpose Molding
A lower-priced line of all-electric toggle presses for general-purpose use is new from KraussMaffei Corp., Florence, Ky.

Carbon Black Replacement
A new substitute for carbon black pigments is said to be affordable and environmentally sound.

Cleanroom Robot Handles Heavy Loads
A new six-axis jointed-arm robot suited to cleanroom use comes in two models that handle payloads up to 220 or 286 lb.

Combo Lab Lines Run Blown and Cast Film
WEB EXCLUSIVE A five-layer cast and blown film line for lab or small-scale production was recently built by Macro Engineering & Technology Inc., Mississauga, Ont.

Compact Molding Cell For Cleanrooms
WEB EXCLUSIVE A compact cleanroom molding design requiring about 6 sq ft (2 m2) of floorspace was exhibited by Boy Machines Inc., Exton, Pa., at a recent trade show in Poland.

Conference Explores Leading-Edge Technologies
Extrusion of biopolymers, nanocomposites, foams, and medical tubing will be some of the topics discussed in the Advances in Extrusion Conference to be held Dec. 9-10 in New Orleans.

Continuous Mixer Recycles Carpets
Growing activity in carpet recycling has prompted new modifications in counter-rotating, twin-rotor continuous mixers.

Cure Agent for Polyurea Thick-Film Spray Coatings
A new chain extender reportedly helps extend pot life of polyurea and hybrid thick-film spray coatings used in truck-bed liners and construction, as well as in systems for adhesives, sealants, and elastomers.

Detect Web Coating Errors Immediately
Until now, visual surface inspection for doctor-blade stripes or other coating defects on sheet or film had to be performed at the end of the line after the coating had cooled or dried and was no longer shiny, reflecting too much light to be easily inspected.

Direct-Drive Electric Press Aims for Higher Efficiencies
A new direct-drive electric machine to debut at the Tokyo International Plastics Fair (IPF) next month will have a new control system and software that achieves a processing concept called “Vector Zero molding.” This development from Sumitomo Heavy Industries (Sumitomo Plastics-Machinery, Norcross, Ga.) reportedly enhances servo-drive efficiency, mold filling, and clamping. (770) 447-5430 • www.sumitomoPM.comSumitomo Plastics Machinery 1266 Oakbrook Dr.

Expanded Capabilities for Plant Auxiliaries Network
Recent upgrades expand the scope and features of the ControlWorks plantwide “virtual private network” (VPN) for monitoring and controlling all types of auxiliary equipment (blenders, silos, dryers, feeders, pumps, loaders, chillers, and robots). The modular, expandable system from Conair, Cranberry Township, Pa., uses Ethernet technology and a web-based interface.

Extrude Profiles with Aluminum, Plastic and Paper Waste
A new feed stream for coextruded wood-plastic composite profiles and boards will be presented this month at Wood Plastic Composites 2008, Oct. 14-16 in Vienna, sponsored by Applied Market Information (AMI) Ltd. in the U.K. (U.S. office in Wyomissing, Pa.). R&D firm Conenor Ltd. in Tampere, Finland, uses recycled aluminum-lined plastic and paper cartons and metalized films.

First Glass-Filled PVC Window Profiles
Glass-reinforced PVC has been made into sheet and fence profiles, but problems with porosity have kept it out of window profiles until now.

FR PC/Polyester Blends Are ‘Eco-Compliant’
Bayer MaterialScience, Pittsburgh, has developed a new line of “eco-compliant” flame-retardant PC/polyester blends that contain no brominated or chlorinated FR additives or heavy metals.

HDPE Film Resin Has Better Moisture Barrier
An ultra-high-barrier HDPE resin is designed for use in film structures where moisture barrier and stiffness are important.

Heavy-Duty Shredders
A new generation of rugged single-shaft shredders can handle large purgings, fibers, carpets, and other heavy-duty waste.

High Cavitation Molds For Caps and Closures
High-cavitation cap and closure tooling is a new offering from StackTeck, Brampton, Ont., through its new alliance with Universal Closures, Tewkesbury, UK.

Less Costly ‘Super-TPV’ Is a High-Heat Option
New Zeotherm 110-70B engineering TPV from Zeon Chemicals L.P., Louisville, Ky., provides heat resistance up to 150 C and noise and vibration dampening for cuffs on automotive air ducts, vibration mounts, fasteners, industrial grips, body and passthrough plugs, and close-out seals.

Long-Glass Acetal For Structural Uses
A new 26% long-glass acetal copolymer from Ticona Engineering Polymers, Florence, Ky., is aimed at structural automotive and appliance parts, as well as gears.

Lower-Cost Carbon Rollers
Carbon-fiber rollers are usually made individually by filament winding or tape wrapping.

Low-Speed Granulator Is Easier to Clean and Maintain
Ease of cleaning and maintenance mark improvements in the second generation of MGL low-speed granulators from Matsui America Inc., Hanover Park, Ill.

Modular Gravity Conveyors Handle Loads to 100 Lb
Gravity conveyor modules that provide an economical way to move products weighing up to 100 lb are new from Dynamic Conveyor Corp., Muskegon, Mich.

More Affordable Hybrid Extrusion Blow Machines
New economical continuous-extrusion blow molders have been launched by Magic USA, Plattsburg, NY.

More Micromolding Presses
Few details are currently available, but a 5-ton micromolding press for molding parts weighing under 0.1 g will be revised with two new injection units and clamp capacities.

Multi-Shot, Direct-Drive All-Electric Machine
A new multi-shot all-electric machine is an expansion of the Canbel direct-drive machine series from Negri Bossi USA, New Castle, Del.

New Additives for PLA
Two additive suppliers have expanded their offerings of modifiers for polylactic acid (PLA) biopolymers: •Biomax Thermal 300, a proprietary heatdistortion modifi er from DuPont Packaging and Industrial Polymers, Wilmington, Del., is said to allow PLA thermoformed packaging to withstand up to 95 C/203 F during transport, storage, and use.

New PC Sheet Offers Better Light Diffusion
A new thermoformable PC sheet from Altuglas International, Philadelphia, reportedly offers exceptional light diffusion and weathering performance in signage.

New Source of S-Cutter Sales, Parts and Service
Size Reduction Specialists (SRS), E.

Non-Halogenated FR Concentrate for Nylon
An improved version of a non-halogen flame-retardant concentrate for nylon reportedly offers a wider processing window than is usual for such products.

Novel Cast Elastomer For Small to Large Parts
A new two-component urethane system is said to allow casting parts ranging from grams to tons with greater ease and greater resulting toughness and durability than are possible with conventional hot-cast elastomers.

Optimized Control System Uses Off-the-Shelf PLC
R&B Plastics Machinery LLC, Saline, Mich., has switched to an off-the-shelf PLC instead of dedicated motion-control cards to control closed-loop hydraulic motions of its injection-blow and extrusion blow molders.

PHBV Gets EU Green Light For Food Contact
The bio-polyester polyhydroxybutyrate-valerate (PHBV) has been shown to comply compositionally with the EU Plastics Directive (2002/72/EC) and now can be lawfully used in Europe for food-contact articles.

Robot Vacuum Grippers Handle Heavy Parts
A new vacuum gripper for robot end-of-arm-tooling is designed to handle bulky and heavy parts weighing up to 614 lb/sq ft.

RPET Frozen Food Tray Is an Industry First
The first thermoformed frozen food trays of recycled PET were just introduced by Associated Packaging Technologies (APT), Chadds Ford, Pa.

Second Low-Energy Barrel-Heat Option from Milacron
An energy-saving induction barrel-heating option is now available directly from Ferromatik Milacron Europe North America, Batavia, Ohio.

Simple ‘Bus’ Network Links Vacuum Loaders
The new FlexBus control system, based on the CAN-bus network concept, uses a single cable to connect a vacuum pump with one or many individually controlled receivers and easily accommodates addition of more stations.

Six-Roll Stack For Thick and Thin Sheet
A six-roll stack custom-built late last year by Taylor’s HPM in Mt.

Speed Upgrade for Side-Entry Robot
A newly upgraded side-entry robot for packaging is said to reduce mold-open times approximately 20%. The servo-driven Heku 3 robot from Hekuma GmbH in Germany (represented here by Autotec Inc., Sylvania, Ohio) boasts repeatable positioning accuracy of 0.0004 in. and transfer speeds of up to 23 ft/sec with end-ofarm-tooling weighing up to 330 lb. (419) 885-2529 • www.hekuma. comAutotec Inc. 7345 Sylvania Ave Sylvania, OH 43560 Phone (419) 885-2529 Fax (419) 882-3164 

Toughened Nylon 6 For Large Thin-Wall Parts
A new high-impact nylon 6 from BASF Corp., Wyandotte, Mich., is aimed at large, thin-wall outdoor applications that require long flow, toughness, UV resistance, custom coloring, and high gloss.

TPU for Medical Tubing
A new TPU alloy from New England Urethane, North Haven, Conn., provides softness and high elongation for medical applications including disposable thin-wall tubing for laparoscopic surgery.

Transparent TPO Makes Its Debut
ExxonMobil Chemical, Houston, has introduced the first U.S.-made transparent TPO for grip applications in kitchenware, consumer electronics, tools, small appliances, and stationary markets. (As we reported in February, another clear TPO, called Notio, was introduced by Mitsui Chemicals of Japan last year.) ExxonMobil’s TPE F471-60 offers 82% light transmittance, haze of 11%, and yellowness index of 7.5.

CW Brabender
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