Five things to know in July: PMM Insight

July 4, 2024
Our new podcast episode looks at some of the top stories and best new equipment of the month.

By Ron Shinn

Here are five things you need to know today. 

1. When it comes to injection molding machinery, Industry 4.0 has gone mainstream. Welcome to “nerdy territory,” said Dana Ford, controls engineer for Wittmann’s auxiliary equipment division, in an interview at NPE2024.

From trimming cycle times to optimizing the use of recycled materials, the ability to collect data and tweak production based on it offers molders many benefits, according to representatives of eight machinery manufacturers interviewed for the story. 

According to Ford, “If all these people are able to make twice as many parts at half the cost, they’re going to be able to out-compete the guy that can’t use all the data.” 

You can read the full story by Karen Hanna here.  

2. Business has been slow for plastics processing machinery manufacturers since mid-2023 because of issues ranging from high inflation to the ups and down of the auto industry, but some company officials recently said they can see a little light at the end of the tunnel. 

“I’ve been in this business for nearly 40 years now, and this is a really unique set of circumstances that I don’t think we’ve ever seen before,” said Gary Sowden, vice president of the Kiefel Packaging Division at Brueckner Group USA. 

But Ryan Pysarchik, president of Gluco Multiplas, said he thinks the industry may have hit a turning point. Fred Piercy, president of R&B Plastics Machinery, said he believes there is now a pent-up demand. And finally, Marko Koorneef, president of Boy Machines Inc., said he is already seeing recovery. 

You can read the full story here. Karen Hanna, Bruce Geiselman and Lynne Sherwin contributed to this report.  

Now turning to some of the interesting new machinery and equipment: 

3. Conair has launched ProfileMaster, a complete downstream profile extrusion line that includes calibration and cooling tables, a wide selection of haul-offs and cutting units, as well as tilting tables. A range of table sizes fits profiles up to 20 feet in length.

Read the Product Innovation written by Bruce Geiselman. 

4. Dri-Air has developed its second-generation, on-demand drying and blending system that allows processors to add their regrind material back into the process in real time. The new system uses Dri-Air’s drying and conveying capabilities, with a Maguire weight scale blender positioned below the discharge of the drying hoppers. 

Read the Product Innovation written by David Tillett. 

5. Athena Controls has introduced the Bedros XL hot-runner temperature control line that provides eight and 32 zones of microprocessor-based PID temperature control. The controllers use the Windows 10.0 IOT operating system, built to support Industry 4.0, and a 12-inch or 15-inch touch display with Athena Controls’ Modus HR software.

Read the Product Innovation written by Karen Hanna. 

Those are my Top 5 items you need to know for this month. We will have a new list on the first Thursday of every month. 



About the Author

Ron Shinn | Editor

Editor Ron Shinn is a co-founder of Plastics Machinery & Manufacturing and has been covering the plastics industry for more than 35 years. He leads the editorial team, directs coverage and sets the editorial calendar. He also writes features, including the Talking Points column and On the Factory Floor, and covers recycling and sustainability for PMM and Plastics Recycling.