Common Ground

Everyone in the supply chain wins when expertise and knowledge about mold manufacturing is shared.


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This past year, I’ve learned about and visited a number of mold builders that have recently expanded their sampling capabilities or even ventured into production molding. Maybe not enough to say it’s a trend, but enough to reaffirm the common ground between each link in the mold manufacturing supply chain: a better mold.

It also re-emphasizes the importance of education, communication and collaboration between the OEM, molder and mold builder. Each person can learn from the other, sharing his or her expertise and knowledge to engineer, build, maintain and run better molds. That’s how everyone wins. And I believe MMT has an essential role in this. 

MMT covers the engineering, building and maintaining of molds, but our audience is not limited to only mold builders. It encompasses molders and OEMs as well. Individuals at those facilities who touch a mold, spec a mold, purchase a mold, design a mold, build a mold, maintain a mold, repair a mold or run a mold in a press. Hence, the whole supply chain 
can learn from MMT.

For example, if mold builders are involved in molding (especially beyond mold tryout and sampling), then there is a need to provide educational content that is just outside of our traditional realm and that enters the world of processing—all in an effort to help make mold builders better suppliers to their customers. The more knowledge each link in the chain has about the impact of its job on the whole process, the better the end product will be. We’ve done this through our Pellet 2 Part series this year, covering everything from resins to water systems to robotics on a molding machine.

On the flip side, OEMs and molders that retain strong in-house moldmaking capabilities or toolrooms dedicated to mold maintenance and repair need to stay current with the latest products, equipment and processes to properly maintain and fix molds. For that, MMT publishes its annual Mold Maintenance and Repair supplement that reviews topics such as toolroom maintenance strategies, the value of spotting presses in mold validation and repair, ultrasonic cleaning, laser welding and more.

In this month’s issue, we again cover a variety of topics that the OEM, molder and mold builder can learn from, including side gating, the economics of “going metric,” proper alignment lock selection, gate refurbishment, taxes, our MoldMaking Business Index, and consumer product and medical end-market reports.

So, if you haven’t already, pass on your copy of MMT to someone in the company who doesn’t receive it. I like to say there’s something in it for everyone.