MMT Blog

2020-2023 Editorial Advisory Board: Meet New Board Member Davide Masato Ph.D.

 

The next member of our new editorial advisory board is Davide Masato, Ph.D. Dr. Masato brings a young, academic and international perspective to the board. He was born and educated in Italy and is now working as an assistant professor in plastics engineering at the University of Massachusetts Lowell (UMass Lowell). He has more than five years of academic experience in plastics processing technologies with a particular focus on injection mold design and manufacturing.

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Steve Burke, plant manager: Quality Mold started out as a side business in Mike Hatfield’s garage, providing welding and other repair services. He is a journeyman moldmaker and could also build molds, and as customers’ requests grew, so did the company. He bought a Bridgeport and a grinder, and the company grew from there. Today, about 70 percent of our business is mold repair and revision work. We can do just about everything in house except heat treating and specialty coatings. We also build new molds and in fact we have three being built now. We have six CNC machining centers, including Mitsubishi TV-500 and a TV-700 high-speed milling machines, Matsuura MC-600VF and MC-1000V milling machines; we have four EDM machines (wire and sinker) including two Mitsubishi EA12VM Advance sinker EDMs with a Mitsubishi MELFA RV-12SL robot, and we have several Mitsui surface grinders with Opti-dressers. We have our own welding department where we can TIG weld, micro TIG weld and, in the last four years, laser weld using our LaserStar 7700-3 Series Open Workspace Welding Workstation.

 

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Midwest Mold Services Inc. (Roseville, Michigan) builds prototype and production tools with both aluminum and steel alloys for injection and compression molders. The shop recently produced a 1+1 injection tool for an automotive molder, which was tasked with producing a low-volume spoiler seal in a thermoplastic vulcanizate (TPV). As is nearly universally the case in automotive, the molder was under tight pressure from its OEM customer to reduce cost. Although the tool worked well, the molder asked if the Midwest team could suggest ways to reduce cycle times to help ease cost pressures. The molder already had tried different TPVs to see if a material change could help. The challenge was that a single large cold sprue fed a cold runner, which in turn fed two cashew gates to produce two seals per shot. While not especially large, the 9 by 3-inch/23 x 8.0 cm seals were contoured parts with geometry and featured four insert-molded polyamide 6/6 (PA 6/6, also called nylon) fasteners per cavity. The 0.31-inch/7.94-mm diameter sprue was 4x thicker than the seal, whose nominal wall was 0.0-inch”/2.0 mm. Hence, cooling the sprue became the rate-limiting step, making it difficult to shorten molding cycles and eject parts faster without causing stringing from the still-cooling sprue.

 

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For parts quality control, the inspection process is normally performed off the machine which means interruption of the continuous production process. Jingdiao’s online measurement and intelligent modification technology (OMIM) eliminates this machining interruption by measuring the parts on the machine. Combined with the SurfMill CAD/CAM software, the operator can measure the parts on the machine and immediately see a graph which shows which areas are or not in tolerance and if needed, machine the part into tolerance. Jingdiao’s OMIM helps the operator inspect the parts on the machine resulting in a smooth production process without any interruptions. See a demonstration of this technology, as well as the transcript below, from Amerimold 2019.

 

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