Goliath Milacron machine tips scales with 8,000 tons of clamping force

Jan. 3, 2024
The company's largest press is now in operation at 20/20 Custom Molded Plastics in Ohio.

By Karen Hanna 

A press that weighs about as much as six blue whales has recently settled into a new injection molding facility across the state from Milacron LLC, which manufactured it. The 8,000-ton injection molding machine (IMM) — called the C8000 — enters Milacron’s product pool as its largest, capable of producing shots with about as much heft as legendary L.A. Lakers basketball big man Shaquille O’Neal.

Mike Gepfert, COO at 20/20 Custom Molded Plastics LLC, Holiday City, Ohio, which took delivery of the C8000 several months ago, said the four-tie-bar IMM is a fitting complement to a 6,750-ton Milacron press that formerly held title as the molding shop’s largest. 

“As a custom molder, we always want a plan for what doesn’t quite yet exist,” he said in a press release. “In order to be competitive, we can’t be constrained. Milacron understands this about us and has always been willing to take it to the next level. The capacity of these two large-tonnage machines thrusts us into a unique niche of custom molders.”  

Weighing in at 1.8 million pounds, the press was too big for Milacron’s Cincinnati-area facilities, so it was built on site at a brand-new 20/20 plant specially constructed to accommodate it, Milacron technical adviser Ron Hertzer said. 

Ensuring IMMs like the 8,000-tonner will work upon delivery without the luxury of actually seeing it in action at Milacron is nerve-wracking, Hertzer said.  

“They’re just exciting ... to walk up to something that’s as big as your yard,” he said. “They actually built a new factory for these machines. The clamp is too big or too heavy for our facility on our floor, so the clamp gets built on site for the very first time. ... There’s tremendous logistics problems getting it from the foundry that makes it to here. I think the castings on that, the particular foundry that made it had like seven furnaces … melting the material once to get the pour for the one stationary platen.” 

Milacron President Mac Jones also marveled at the machine’s size. 

“The sheer size of this machine is hard to put into words, but its unique design and processing stats speak volumes,” he said. “The C8000 is a large-part powerhouse designed by some of the best plastics processing engineers in the world that delivers the highest performance, functionality and flexibility possible in the large-tonnage space.” 

Every one of 20/20’s 45 IMMs is a Milacron. 

The OEM’s technologies are reliable, and employees’ familiarity with them eases their transition to newer machines, 20/20 company owner and President Ron Ernsberger said. He praised the machine controls’ ease of use. 

“Our plastics manufacturing at 20/20 requires a great deal of redundancy ... ease of transition and reliability, and Milacron has met these expectations repeatedly, which is why we continue to turn to them when we’re ready for the next big thing,” said Ernsberger, who described Milacron presses as “workhorses.” 

By the time 20/20 installed its 6,750-tonner, the company already had booked all its machine time. 

With the market continuing to grow for big parts such as large plastic pallets, underground enclosures for telecommunications and utilities, and drainage and irrigation products, the company enters 2024 planning to add yet two more massive IMMs. 

From Ernsberger’s perspective, the behemoths have become Milacron’s “claim to fame.” 

“The capacity these large-tonnage machines provide thrusts us into a unique position within the marketplace that’s unsurpassed,” he said. 


Milacron LLC, Batavia, Ohio, 513-536-2000, www.milacron.com   


Vital Statistics

Press length 
94 feet 
Moving platen weight 
152 tons 
Clamping force 
8,000 tons 
Total shot weight  
325 pounds 
Total unspooled length of wire in the press 
Almost 38 miles 
Tie-bar dimensions 
Nearly 38 feet in length and 1.75 feet in diameter 
Clamp-stroke capacity 
24 feet 
Amount of daylight 
 More than 28 feet 
Range of the depth of molds the press can accommodate 
Less than 4 feet to 21 feet 
Feed-screw size 
 260mm, providing a 5-inch-per-second injection velocity 
About the Author

Karen Hanna | Senior Staff Reporter

Senior Staff Reporter Karen Hanna covers injection molding, molds and tooling, processors, workforce and other topics, and writes features including In Other Words and Problem Solved for Plastics Machinery & Manufacturing, Plastics Recycling and The Journal of Blow Molding. She has more than 15 years of experience in daily and magazine journalism.