MMT Blog

The new normal in mold manufacturing is change, and with change comes challenges. The question is, do you view these challenges as disruption or inspiration? The mold manufacturers I know would answer the latter. They serve as the inspiration to develop new solutions.

These challenges are also the inspiration behind what the MoldMaking Technology team will cover in 2019, which includes providing a snapshot of the current status of each challenge as well as strategies to constructively face each one. These challenges range from technology issues, like additive manufacturing, automation, and Industry 4.0, to business issues such as tariffs and trade, cybersecurity and workforce development.

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Moldmakers who attended IMTS last year witnessed firsthand the advancements being made in data-driven manufacturing, also known as Industry 4.0. Machine tools are becoming more and more connected and companies are continuing to advance the way they collect production data and use it to optimize throughput in their shops. But how does one prepare a moldmaking operation for implementation of Industry 4.0? What is the key to mastering all it is said to offer companies small and large?

I spent some time with Brendt Holden, president of Haimer USA, to get his perspective on Industry 4.0, its benefits to moldmakers (with a particular focus on machining), and how our industry can embrace and implement it for better productivity. Following is the video and transcript of our conversation.

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The Canadian Association of Mold Makers (CAMM) reported it has taken a significant step toward forging an alliance between the WindsorEssex Economic Development Corp., the CAMM and the Engineering Export Promotion Council of India and Tools and Gauge Manufacturer’s Association of India.

The organizations signed two memorandums of understanding to establish partnerships and collaborations on business opportunities both globally and in the Indian market. CAMM President Jonathan Azzopardi (Laval International) told the Windsor Star, “The signing of the agreements between TAGMA, EEPC and CAMM is the first step to bringing two already successful industrial economies together to build partnerships focused on harnessing the strengths of our two industries to create a mould making superpower on a global scale.”

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By: Suzanne Morgan 31. January 2019

A Trade Policy Perspective on the Plastics Industry

As the plastics industry has an estimable presence in all 50 states, it counts among its supporters as many Democrats as it does Republicans, but the shift in control of the House could have ramifications on several important issues for the industry, such as tariffs and trade.

 

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U.S. manufacturing will see significant impacts to the agriculture, aerospace and software industries because of the changing trade stance between America and its top trading partners including China, Canada and Mexico. While China is the largest trading partner with America, nearly 80 percent of that trade is imports from China[1]. In contrast, America’s exports to Canada, at nearly 49 percent of total U.S.-Canada trade, represents a dollar value that is 220 percent greater than America’s exports to China. The situation is similar with Mexico. Total U.S. exports to Mexico and Canada are over four times greater than to China. Conversely, U.S. imports from China equal over 80 percent of combined imports from Canada and Mexico to the U.S. Such asymmetrical trade flows can mean important things for any given business depending on a given firm’s reliance on foreign inputs to make finished good and reliance on foreign consumers to buy American-made products.

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