Bob Jackson retires, closes Jackson Machinery 

March 8, 2024
He continues to share knowledge gathered from his decades in the blow molding industry.

By Bruce Geiselman and Lynne Sherwin

NPE2024 will most likely be missing one of its familiar faces as Bob Jackson, a longtime fixture in the blow molding machinery business, has closed his namesake company and retired. 

He told Plastics Machinery & Manufacturing that at age 80, “it's not exciting anymore. And the blow molding business for the last two years has been very slow, as has the economy. And as a result, there just wasn't much to do, and standing around with your finger in your ear was not fun. So voilà, retirement.” 

He said he wound down Jackson Machinery Inc. last year, and the building in Port Washington, Wis., has been cleared out and purchased by another manufacturer. 

Jackson’s career began in 1968 at Peninsular Machinery Co. in Detroit, where he sold metalworking tools and plastics processing equipment. After holding various positions in the industry, including at Davis-Standard Sterling and Hayssen Manufacturing, he founded Jackson Machinery in 1986, selling new and refurbished blow molding equipment.  

Jackson received the 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of Plastics Engineers Blow Molding Division and also is a past president of the division.  

Though he currently does not plan on attending NPE2024, he continues to share his knowledge on an informal basis with those who need it.  

“I have half a dozen customers that have funny needs and need some help that I can give them, and as they ask I do it as I can, and assist anybody that needs something that has to do with blow molding,” he said. “Just a verbal thing, where the people that know me and know what I can and cannot do, they're welcome to call and I'll help them as best I can.” 

Jackson and his wife, Sharon, live between two golf courses in New Smyrna Beach, Fla., although he admits he has no interest in playing the game himself: “I love watching all these people run around chasing balls.” They also plan to travel. 

“I've got amusing things to keep my mind alive,” he said. “But I have no particular need to do anything other than just enjoy now.” 

About the Author

Bruce Geiselman | Senior Staff Reporter

Senior Staff Reporter Bruce Geiselman covers extrusion, blow molding, additive manufacturing, automation and end markets including automotive and packaging. He also writes features, including In Other Words and Problem Solved, for Plastics Machinery & Manufacturing, Plastics Recycling and The Journal of Blow Molding. He has extensive experience in daily and magazine journalism.

About the Author

Lynne Sherwin | Managing Editor

Managing editor Lynne Sherwin handles day-to-day operations and coordinates production of Plastics Machinery & Manufacturing’s print magazine, website and social media presence, as well as Plastics Recycling and The Journal of Blow Molding. She also writes features, including the annual machinery buying survey. She has more than 30 years of experience in daily and magazine journalism.