MMT Blog

 

The United States, Canada and Mexico reached established the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement (USMCA), aka the “new NAFTA.” Mold builders and molders should evaluate the impact the USMCA will have on their businesses despite many of the provisions not going into effect until 2020 and requiring the approval of the U.S. Congress and similar Canadian and Mexican bodies of government. The USMCA agreement should benefit the majority of North American molders and mold builders. However, those manufacturers with sources in China may need to reconsider their supply chains.

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Krones Inc. in Franklin, Wisconsin, is a subsidiary of a company based in Germany that routinely manufactures redundant parts in its plants throughout the world. Krones recently developed a way to streamline this process and provide optimized parts to end users faster and better.

The approximately 8,000-square-foot moldmaking area within Krones’ 300,000-square-foot facility is equipped with four Heidenhain iTNC 530-controlled machines doing cavity work. It also houses two smaller auxiliary machines, a quality control department with a coordinate measuring machine (CMM) and an assembly area. This Krones location is primarily focused on manufacturing and supplying parts for its large blow molding, filling, labeling, and packing operations installed throughout North America, Central America, and the Caribbean. Common jobs include manufacturing molds for stretch blow molding machines that produce PET plastic bottles for water, soda, and other liquid products. A typical part-lot size is 40 pieces (20 mold sets) in an average four-hour cycle time.

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Founded in 1972, MTD Micro Molding (MTD) is not a typical micro molding medical component manufacturer, as it develops the world’s smallest components for the most challenging molding needs and the most innovative applications. To put it into perspective, 50 percent of MTD’s new projects are rescues, meaning projects no other molder would attempt due to their complexity or have attempted and failed.

The market for less-invasive micro medical devices continues to grow worldwide. In fact, the medical device industry leaps ahead almost daily, with constant demand for newer, smaller, never-before-seen micro devices. Because of the rapidly changing industry, MTD was in need of an EDM that had the capability to utilize wire smaller than 50-micron diameter. The company discovered that only two suppliers offered wire EDMs that met these cutting diameters, one being MC Machinery.

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At MoldMaking Technology, we are curious. We want to know what it is that makes you, our readers, engage with our magazine—what topics really attract you. Like Editorial Director Christina Fuges said in her blog of December 28, we took the opportunity to gather year-end statistics about the blogs that resonated most with our readers. She posted her top 10; and I am sharing my top 10 today. 

Happy New Year to all!

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The holidays are a perfect time for reminiscing about the memories you made with family, friends and colleagues throughout the past 12 months. When it comes to work, this time of year is also good for looking back on what worked and what did not work so well. With that in mind, I pulled some data to get a list of my most-viewed blog posts from 2018 to see what topics resonated the most with our readers. Check out this slideshow for my top ten.

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