Volume One, Number Six
March 17, 2003
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Now boldly mold!
For more information, contact Meese Orbitron Dunne Co., American Rotational Molding Group; 16404 Knott Ave., La Mirada, CA 90638; Phone: 888.724.1228; Fax: 877.904.1670; www.modroto.com.
Q: How do I know when rotational molding becomes cost-effective vs. hand-fabricated assembly?
A: Volume is often the indicator that triggers a conversion, however, many engineers who have replaced fabricated parts with molded parts were surprised to realize a slate of other rewards. For example, a water treatment products company received a large order thanks to a new environmental regulation. If they continued to hand-fabricate its plastic device, they would miss their delivery date. They turned to rotational molding to speed production. We met their delivery deadline and in developing the design, we also eliminated several parts and their costly, labor-intensive assembly steps. Plus, we molded-in several snap-fit inserts that made the product much easier, faster and safer to install in the field.
It would be hard to quantify the value of these intangible benefits but they probably would have made the conversion cost-effective years earlier even at a much smaller volume of production.
For low-to-moderate production runs under 10,000 units per year, rotomolding nearly always cuts costs vs. hand-fabrication.
Still hand fabricating? Tell us about your project and get a free estimate
Replace Fabricated Steel, Too!
Sure, steel is strong but welding steel pieces together creates a weakness that invites corrosion and eventually leads to failure. In the case of fabricated fuel tanks, failure is not an option. That's what engineers at construction machinery manufacturer Finn Corp., Fairfield, Ohio, were concerned about when they considered replacing steel fuel tanks on its T90 HydroSeederR with rotationally molded plastic.
Our plastic fuel tank is molded in one piece. There are no joints or welds to invite corrosion and in an impact, it's designed to bend without rupturing. Since we molded it to fit in the identical cavity on the machine, no changes to the T90 were needed. Plus, we molded-in inserts that made securing the tank faster and easier. Finn also cut its costs by 62 percent while specifying a superior product.
Fabricated Golf Cart Converted to Plastic Earns
"Conversion of The Year" Award
For the second consecutive year, our own custom services team earned the coveted "Conversion of the Year" award in the Association of Rotational Molders Rotomolded Products Competition. The award recognized MOD/ARM for converting a custom golf club merchandising cart for Callaway Golf from fabricated steel to polyethylene.
It eliminated several hundred parts and fasteners along with associated assembly requirements in favor of only nine rotationally molded panels, three injection molded wheels, one extruded tube to protect each club and a handful of nuts, bolts and screws. Plus, we contributed to an overall cost reduction of 75 percent vs. the original metal cart. Click here for details and color photography.
Tell us about your project and get a free estimate.
Adventures In Rotomolding is published by Meese Orbitron Dunne Co., Saddle Brook, NJ, http://www.modroto.com; 800.829.3230. Copyright 2003 Meese, Inc. May not be reprinted without permission. Please feel free to pass along to other engineers and colleagues.