Thermoforming Innovator Sweig Passes

Helped advance pressure-forming and numerous other technologies at Profile Plastics.

Heavy-gauge thermoforming innovator Stephen J. Sweig passed aware recently, according to a release issued by Profile Plastics, Lake Bluff, Ill., for which he worked for the last 30 years. Sweig was 73.

Sweig had been a driving force for process and tooling innovation in heavy-gauge thermoforming as the thermoformer's chief engineer.  Although “semi-retired” for many years, Stephen remained active in the business, working on new projects and process upgrades up until his death.

He was singularly responsible for many innovations in thermoforming machinery and process technology over the years, many that are now considered "standard equipment." He was also influential in the development of 5-axis trimming for plastics parts. Sweig holds a U.S. patent for Double-Sided Pressure Forming, and worked with Glenn Beall to create the first Pressure-Forming Design Guide in 1985.

Starting at Arrem Plastics, which Profile later acquired, Sweig was at the forefront of advancing the pressure-forming process from a garage-shop idea to the fully commercialized, and widely accepted, process that it is today. He worked with toolmakers and machine builders to push the envelope of what features could be molded-in, many of which had were firsts. He also had been influential in expanding the capabilities of the twin-sheet process, allowing for ever more complex part geometries and developing cost effective ways to align the molds during forming.

He was a respected member of the SPE Thermoforming Division, having attended and presented at the annual conference regularly. He was recognized for his achievements as the recipient of the Thermoformer of the Year in 2002.

Profile Plastics described Sweig as "an engineer’s engineer, always backing up his ideas with detailed calculations and ensuring a safe workplace for all. His passion, creativity, intellect and institutional knowledge will definitely be missed."

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