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NPE2018 Show Daily - Wednesday

NPE is truly ‘Breaking the Mold’ as a multifaceted experience, with activities, discoveries and opportunities to satisfy the needs of anyone who works in the plastics industry or has a need to know about plastics

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WEDNESDAY NPE 2018 : THE PLASTICS SHOW SHOW DAILY On the fly Color Changes. PDQ. There are a lot of features that distinguish a Plastrac blender, but none greater than the ability to change colors as often and as quickly as customer orders demand it. The secret is our level-sensing vane switch (standard on every single blend- er). Harried processors can hurry up color changes by swapping top castings without any need for cable removal. Easy does it blending. Now. And down the road. Plastrac designs and builds blenders to uncompli- cate life for our customers. They are simple to set up. Simple to operate. Simple to adapt in the field. Simple to expand in the future. Let's say you buy a two-component (color + additive) system now, but a few years later, you need to make it a multi-component system. Plastrac blenders are all entirely modular, so you won't be locked into the original configuration if your needs change or grow. What's more, all our parts, mechanical and electronic, are always well stocked, because we don't think your present or future operations should include downtime. Plastrac puts you in total (touchscreen) control. The perfect blend. Every time. 610-356-3000 • Plastrac.com Visit us in WEST HALL 2 BOOTH #W129 Our new touchscreen controller, optional on all our blenders, puts complete, intuitive process manage- ment at your fingertips. Set-up parameters are viewable during operation and stored auto- matically. There is a non-volatile shot counter. A thumb drive enables easy software updates and transfer of the recipe files. A full keyboard enables easy entry of all recipe and component names. All events and alarms are captured with both a real time and a day stamp. In other words, everything you always wanted to know about blending in a single panel. Americhem Focuses on Development of Compounds and Addiঞves that Target Some Key Trends By Lilli Manolis Sherman Plascs Technology "The trends we have observed are related to different seg- ments' needs. For outdoor decking, there is a shi[ to darker colors with a realisঞc wood appearance that have lower heat retenঞon," says Mahew Hellstern, CEO of Americhem. Hellstern says that the company's eCap technology (Booth S17031), comprises high-performance pre-colored capstock compounds, some PVC-based, that have proven color stability and performance over tradiঞonal PVC compounds. Another area of focus are anঞmicrobials, says Hellstern. "As bacteria and microbes evolve, a wider breadth of anঞmicrobial soluঞons are needed. Our anঞmicrobial line has been expand- ed to work across a wider range of polymers that can be pro- cessed at lower temperatures—PVC, TPEs and TPOs." The company is also seeking to help processors eliminate secondary processes. Here, Hellstern points to the company's Surlyn Reflecঞons Series of thermoplasঞc alloys, gained via the acquisiঞon of LTL Color Com- pounders. The com- pany has had world- wide exclusive li- cense for over a de- cade to make and sell DuPont's Surlyn Reflecঞons Series resins. These alloys of ionomer and ny- lon 6 are used to injecঞon mold weatherable, glossy parts. Says Hellstern, "Manufacturers are conঞnuing to look at ways to reduce secondary processes. The Surlyn Reflecঞons Series thermoplasঞc alloys are high-gloss resins that produce highly durable parts that require no painঞng. These alloys are less viscous and flow easily to fill larger, thinner-walled parts while sঞll providing visual appeal." Hellstern says, "As a unified Americhem, with the acquisi- ঞon of LTL, Infinity Compounds and Vi-Chem, we have syner- gies across material plaorms and are able to tap into a wider breadth of technical experঞse. Our customers can trust us to be their partner when providing the right soluঞon to solve their most complex problems." Americhem's CEO Mahew Hellstern. Paulson: Fill the Skills Gap By Training By Jim Callari Plascs Technology Craig Paulson reviews part defects in a Paulson ProMolder 1 seminar. The halls of NPE2018 are buzzing with live demonstraঞons. Paulson Training Programs (Booth W5073) has a much quieter display, but it is just as impacul. "Training may not be as glamorous as all the shiny new hardware that is running at the show," remarks Craig Paulson, the firm's president. "But the investment is just as good if not beer, and the payback is real." He and his father Don started Paulson Training Programs in 1977. Since then, Craig Paulson esঞmates it has trained 50,000 people at more than 5,000 companies. Training has never been an "easy sell," but Paulson contends that nowadays—with the skills gap showing no sign of narrowing—more processors are seeing it as a tool to make a business more efficient and profitable, and to recruit and retain employees. "It's tough geমng young people interested in pursuing a career in plasঞcs," he says. "The visibility of our industry is low. Even beyond the high-school level, there are few colleges of- fering degreed programs in plasঞcs engineering or polymer science. But savvy companies are starঞng to realize that train- ing can be used as a recruitment and 'onboarding' tool. They can more readily demonstrate to young people how they can build a career in plasঞcs and make good money doing it." To be truly impacul, processors must make an ongoing commitment to training or else they'll run the risk of disillu- sioning a new hire. Paulson says, "Saying you have 'a training program' is not enough. You have to implement it the right way. You need to employ best pracঞces. It's very important that someone be in charge. If both the training tools and exe- cuঞon are right, you can turn someone who's been flipping burgers into a competent molder with ঞme. And as a business, training can help you create a posiঞve work environment that will help you retain your employees." Paulson esঞmates that about 70% of its training business is in injecঞon molding, but it offers programs in blow molding, extrusion and thermoforming. Training is available online on a subscripঞon basis. For a one-ঞme fee, the company sঞll offers its training programs on DVDs. Of late, Paulson is doing more "hands-on" training, running seminars over a 4-5-day period with its injecঞon machinery partners, or directly at faciliঞes of processors for a more cus- tomized learning experience—"tailor-made to the customer's parts, materials, machine and mold," Paulson explains. "Training is a viable investment that has a verifiable return," he states. "The results of training can be measured in terms of reducing scrap, increasing machinery upঞme, improving pro- ducঞon by decreasing cycles. We had one customer molding bumpers decrease cycle ঞme from 90 sec. to 45 sec. as a result of modificaঞons that they made to their process based on what they learned in our training program. Then there are sav- ings you realize by not making mistakes in the first place." 32

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