Mold Craft has done a lot to become an innovation leader in the mold making industry.
Micro Mold Innovation
Mold Craft specializes in making precision micro molds. In recent years, Mold Craft determined there was a gap and a need to have a specialized area to test micro molds.
In the big picture of molding, micro molding is relatively new and typically for very specialized applications. Not only are the molds different but many times the presses, like the Battenfeld MicroPower15t, have unique features.
For example, the nozzle on the Battenfeld press reaches all the way to parting line. When customers build micro molds specific to a project, it is very common that they will not have a readily-available press to test their brand new micro mold. Mold Craft’s goal was to develop a facility that would closely mimic that of our customers and be separate from the mold making facility.
With that vision and perfect timing of space availability the Tech Center is born. On the outside it looks like a standard brick building, but once one walks inside the truth is revealed.
The Mold Craft Tech Center
Mold Craft’s Tech Center is home to a variety of presses, press connections, conference & meeting area, a class 100,000 clean room and a 3D digital ABS printer. The Tech Center is run by Derrick Jahr who will soon be joined by another UW-Stout graduate, Hunter Bartz. Derrick graduated from UW-Stout about 4 years ago with both Manufacturing & Plastics Engineering majors. While taking on the role of a process engineer, Derrick balances his time as a mold designer. VP of Engineering, Justin McPhee, explained, “We are utilizing Derrick’s skills and knowledge in mold design and developing a processing protocol that will take us to the next level in micro mold process development.”
Recently, Mold Craft has added a conference table, big screen wall monitor, computer, etc. to allow additional space for collaboration on the Mold Craft campus.
While the employee’s at Mold Craft certainly do love the Tech Center, it is Mold Craft’s customers who are the true beneficiaries of this innovation workshop.
Because micro molding is unique, especially Battenfeld micro molding, Mold Craft has a press dedicated to sampling customer molds built specifically around the Battenfeld platform. The Battenfeld Press has a rotary platen that is used to improve cycle time by ejecting the parts in concert with the SCARA
(Selective Compliance Articulated Robot Arm) robot and integrated end of arm tooling (EOAT). The Tech Center also allows Mold Craft to create Production Quality Prototypes in order to fine tune each customer’s part design to perfection. Without the Tech Center, none of this would be possible. Justin McPhee said, “The main facility at Mold Craft is dedicated to building molds and does not have additional room available to add a molding machine without sacrificing the capacity and redundancy we carry with the mold making machine tools.”
Tech Center Turn-Key Solutions
The Tech Center also gives Mold Craft the opportunity to create Turn-Key solutions for its customers. A Turn Key Solution is when a customer buys a press, sends it to Mold Craft, and allows Mold Craft to create a mold that fits and operates perfectly in the customer’s press.
Mold Craft then ships the entire press and mold simultaneously so that when it shows up at the customer’s facility, all they have to do is “plug it in”.
Justin continues, “With the additional space at the Tech Center and only one Battenfeld press at this time, we have real estate that would allow a customer to put a press on our floor where we are able to sample the mold we are building and deliver a turn-key system with a robust process that would allow the customer to begin molding parts immediately once it gets to their facility.”
The Tech Center offers a lot to Mold Craft’s customers. Mold Craft is known for creating high quality micro molds with extremely tight tolerances. Mold Craft understands the impact that their molds have on their customers. Derrick Jahr said, “Our customer’s molds are extremely important to them, essential to production lines. Should there be any mold development required, The Tech Center allows us to test and tweak their molds to perfection prior to shipping which drastically reduces the amount of time required for final validation, ultimately resulting in a lower overall cost of ownership.”
Mold Craft is an innovative company that specializes in micro molding. With the use of the Tech Center, Mold Craft is delivering high quality micro mold solutions to its customers. We look forward to the next opportunity to build an awesome micro mold!