WEBINAR: Getting Real about Manufacturing Education to Fill the Skills Gap

By: Christina M. Fuges 27. August 2015

New, innovative ways of teaching the hard and soft skills of manufacturing at the high school level are necessary to help fill our skilled workforce gap. Developing a program that functions as a student-run manufacturing business is one such method. It involves students managing real customers, making real products, meeting real deadlines, facing real day-to-day manufacturing challenges, while making real money in the process. Students are responsible for meeting with customers, ordering material and tooling, quoting, manufacturing, invoicing, shipping, maintenance, marketing, and all other aspects of running a business. The company also brings in money that can be used to support the program and pay students profit sharing. This method allows students to make an informed decision about their career paths. You will learn from Cardinal Manufacturing founder and instructor Craig Ceigleski, as well as from the leader of a replica program in Hurley, Wisconsin, how to help establish and support this type of teaching in your local district to fill the skills gap within your own shops.

Register and get it on your calender today! Click here.

Critical Insights on Conformal Cooling

By: Christina M. Fuges 25. August 2015

Photo courtesy of CONTURA MTC GmbH.

Industry colleague and proponent of conformal cooling Bob Beard has once again helped organize a technical conference to provide critical insights on reducing cycle times and reject rates with conformal cooling. This will take place on September 29 at the Toshiba Technical Center in Elk Grove Village, Illinois.
The 2015 Conformal Cooling Conference will focus on the practical application of conformal cooling coupled with rapid heat/cool technology and provide moldmakers, OEMs and brand owners with information to help improve their process and reduce costs. Additionally, the conference is ideal for technical, engineering and management professionals at automotive and medical companies.
A live demonstration of both conformal and conventional cooling technologies will be featured. As an added bonus, a rapid heat/rapid cool demonstration will be conducted on the same molds (provided by Linear Mold & Engineering). This will allow attendees to observe, in real time, the impact and benefit of these emerging technologies. Robert A. Beard & Associates, Inc. a provider of technical, engineering and management support for plastics and Plastic Technologies, Inc., a global leader in plastic-based package development are the conference sponsors.
Conformal cooling of injection molds is a game changer in the molding industry. Typical cycle reductions of 20 to 40 percent can be realized. Lower reject rates are accomplished because of uniform cooling and stronger parts are achieved through lower molded-in stress,” Beard says. 
Event speakers include:
  • Dr. David Schwam, Case Western Reserve University, Applications of Conformal Cooling and Additive Manufacturing in Die Casting
  • Jason Warr, Linear Mold & Engineering, Conformal Cooling—Improving Manufacturing One Layer at a Time 
  • Kip Perykowski, Regloplas, Advantages of Pressurized Water Mold Heating for Dynamic Heating of Injection Molded Parts
  • Reiner Westoff, Contura MTC GmbH, Using Aerospace Technology to Build Conformal Cooled Mold Inserts
  • Jeff Higgins, Autodesk, Understanding the Benefits of Conformal Cooling
Fees are $495 for the 8 am to 5 pm, one-day session, which includes lunch and conference
related materials.
For more information click here and to register click here.

Moldmaking Hits the Northeast

By: Christina M. Fuges 20. August 2015

Courtesy of Precision Punch.


Looking for local opportunities to see what's new in products and technologies for mold building and molding? Then mark your calendar for two events hitting the Northeast this fall, and MoldMaking Technology will be there to catch up on what's happening.

Hawk Mold and Die Supply Inc. has supplied mold and die components from plastics processing supplies and abrasives to mold components and tool steel since 1987, emphasizing “Made in the USA” parts whenever possible. For 25 years Hawk has been the largest PCS stocking distributor in the U.S, and now Hawk presents two opportunities in the Northeast to see its vast mold and molding technology offerings. Its annual Product and Technology Showcases are taking place this year from 1pm-7pm on Tuesday, September 29th in Pennsylvania at the Holiday Inn (1750 Sumneytown Pike, Kulpsville, PA 19443) and Thursday, October 1st in Massachusetts at the Leominster Lodge of Elks (134 North Main St., Leominster, MA 01453).

Showcases feature representatives from each of the company's vendors covering all aspects of mold building and processing.  Experts will be on hand to discuss the latest innovations in technology, many of which were unveiled during this year’s NPE show in Orlando, Florida. Following is the list of suppliers who will have representatives on hand to present their latest product offerings:

  • PCS Company: Mold bases, hot runners, controllers, mold components
  • Precision Punch: Custom punches, mold components, pins, perforators
  • Electrodes Mid-Atlantic: EDM supplies
  • Boride Engineered Abrasives: Polishing supplies
  • Nexthermal: Cartridge, coil, tubular heaters
  • Trivolt: Band heaters, mica heaters, cartridge heaters, coil heaters
  • Slide: Rust preventatives, releases, cleaners, purging compounds
  • American Screw and Barrel: Screws, barrels, tips, end caps, tie bars
  • Eastern Industries: Feeler gages and shim stock
  • ICS Laser: Mold texturing and engraving services ( electrodes, etc.)
  • Mitsubishi Hitachi Tool: Hard milling cutters
  • Nanoplas: mold coatings, greases, rust preventatives, cleaner/degreasers/releases
  • Polymer Cleaning Technology: Hot runner parts, cleaning, repair
  • RedeVault: Mold data storage, real time cycle count
  • Ultra Tooling Inc.: Graphite milling cutters
Courtesy of PCS Company.
And I'll be there on September 29th representing MoldMaking Technology magazine. I hope to see you there and catch up on what's happening in your shops.
Hawk is also including some technical presentations throughout the day, including:
  • 2pm-2:30pm and 5pm-5:30pm: PCS hot runner specialist Paul Hauser will give a presentation of the company’s new thermal gate hot runner system and discuss the latest in hot sprue technology and hot sprue bushings for high temp resins.
  • 3pm-3:30pm and 6pm-6:30pm: Jeff Lewis of Slide Products will give a presentation on purging with a focus on hot runner systems.
And I can't forget to mention the special offers. Hawk will have door prizes and a 5-percent discount on your next order (one discount per company), and if you pre-register and attend, you will be included in a special drawing for a 40” flat screen TV!
Register today by clicking here and include number of attendees. For more information, call 800-488-7757 or email

"Cool" Tool

By: Christina M. Fuges 18. August 2015

With all the discussion about conformal cooling, everyone is looking to enhance its design to optimize heat dissipation and achieve uniform cooling, as well as to improve product quality and reduce cycle times and costs. Here is just one tool that claims to help with these goals. Moldex3D partnered with One Process Machining (OPM) laboratory in Japan to develop a simulation tool for conformal cooling through which users can "build conformal cooling channels according to the contour of a product in a fast and intuitive way." 
According to Moldex3D, mold designers are then able to change the cooling design to make cooling channels closer to the molded products in the cavity, so the temperature can be more evenly distributed. This helps eliminate cold and hot spots inside the mold, minimizing residual stress, warpage, voids and sink marks. 
One interesting feature is a “slicing” function that allows users to slice up the imported part into several sections, easing and improving conformal cooling system design, according to the company. In addition, cooling analysis predicts the required cooling time, shows temperature variation inside the mold cavity and can predict coolant flow rate, pressure loss and vortex/dead water areas.

Save the Date: MFG DAY 2015

By: Christina M. Fuges 14. August 2015

Manufacturing Day (MFG DAY) occurs the first Friday in October each year. This year that falls on October 2, 2015.  According to organizers, this annual event is a celebration of modern manufacturing, which is meant to inspire the next generation of manufacturers.

This day gives manufacturers an opportunity to open their doors and show, in a solid coordinated effort, what manufacturing is really all about! The goal is to continue addressing the skilled labor shortage by informing and inspiring our future generation of manufacturers.

So open your doors and hold an open house in your community. We've even created some tools you can show during your events. Click here for videos and other teaching tools to get kids and parents excited about manufacturing careers. If you have a unique way that your comapny is opening its doors, email me so I can help get the word out for you! 

If you are unable to host an event of your own, promote other events in your area.



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