Transcription: One of the target markets for DeKalb Molded Plastics is specialty material handling. We do pallets. We do containers. But really we do things that are specific to an application. It may be a metal product. It may be a medical product, but it has to be handled and protected really well and that’s what we do really, really well. A lot of people do pallets, a lot of people do the big containers, but we will specialize. Special totes, things protect and keep these things safe.
Transcription: As part of our structural plastics work we do gas assist injection molding. Gas assist is really an injection molding process where we enter the melt and then we chase it with nitrogen gas. This allows us to channel out specific areas, thicker sections, build in strong points into the design of the part and really give a nice robust part.
Transcription: I think DeKALB is very in tune with what the customer likes to see. We have the technical expertise here. We are not necessarily design responsible, but we have the ability to support, determine what structural parameters need to be into the design, so we assist with that. We assist with the tooling design to make sure that it’ll produce the part that they would like to see. We assist with material selections so that it will help the customer achieve the characteristics that they’d like to see, the performance criteria they would like to be able to achieve in their product design.
Transcript:Foam injection molding is a process in which we take thermoplastic material and induce a colorant as well as a blowing agent in there to expand the material out. What we do is we bring in the material in from a hopper or a gondola, come into a process in which we blend it with that colorant and with that blowing agent into a hopper feeder. It then goes into a screw that is then fed the material into an accumulator. From that accumulator, then feeds into our injection process. The accumulator then feeds in through injection process into an aluminum mold. That’s the nice thing about our process is that we use less expensive molds. We don’t use steel ones. We use aluminum ones. By having that it’s a major advantage. The material is then through multiple ports injected into usually a single cavity tool. We may put more than one cavity into a press, but it’s multiple ports coming into one cavity.
Transcription: A gas assisted injection molded part is going to have a little more of a look like a high pressure injection molded product. There won’t be a lot of swirls. It’ll be more of a solid look, but still, won’t be a perfect class A surface. Adequate for most applications, it still is a very structural product. It has the gas channels but will look a lot like injection molding.
DeKALB is kicking off our annual United Way campaign. Our goal for this year is $14,500, which shouldn’t be a problem since last year we exceed our goal by $4000!! This is a big event that typically results in 100% employee participation. We have games and weekly fund raisers throughout the campaign to help raise money and then wrap it up with a lunch to celebrate our success. This is a great opportunity for our employees to have fun while supporting our community.
The DeKALB team is looking forward to attending the 2013 MAPP Benchmarking Conference. Meet two of our newer employees who will be attending the conference for the first time by watching this video. We are excited to see our friends and colleagues next week!
Structural foam molding is a process in which we use similar thermoplastics but you use blowing agents and you use colorants, and the blowing agents allow you to expand the material into the mold at a much lower pressure than you would on a high injection pressure system. What that does that gives you very good structural strength, it gives you the ability to save between 15-20% of your thermoplastic materials, it gives you the ability to make larger parts of that structural condition that you may not be able to do within a high pressure injection molding process.
The summer issue of Manufacturing Today highlights DeKALB Molded Plastics’ commitment to strategy and investments which support not only the manufacturing process but also employees.
An excerpt of the article:
Founded in 1979, DeKalb Molded Plastics has spent more than 34 years building its reputation in the structural foam industry. A custom structural foam molder, DeKalb specializes in structural foam injection molding and gas assist molding, and large, multi-nozzle plastic products.
DeKalb was one of the first ISO 9002-certified structural plastics molders in the United States. Among the company’s services are in-house post mold painting; plastic decorating capabilities; kitting and assembly requirements for programs for single standalone products; or complex, multicomponent, multi-operation programs.
We basically stay within the range of high density polyethylene to engineering structural plastics. If we go into the high temperature stuff where you’re going to need a oil heater, something beyond that 700-800 degree melt range, really, if the tool needs to be above the boiling temperature of water, and then we don’t play in that zone. In that area, in the three-sixteenths to quarter to three-eighths inch part thickness, four pounds to 150 pounds, that’s kind of our boundaries.