SIPA’s new mold refurbishing centers in North and South America are a big hit. In recent months, we have carried out major projects for some of the most important PET preform producers in the Americas. They include Lorenpet in Brazil, Niagara Waters and Western Containers in the USA.
SIPA North America has been ramping up its mold refurbishing activities in Atlanta since it moved its headquarters there in 2012. In recent months we have installed extra tools, workbenches and a crane. Atlanta serves our customers in the east of the continent, while we look after customers on the Pacific Coast from an operation in Los Angeles, Ca. We are also increasing our capability at our principal site in South America, in São Paulo, Brazil.
“Our customers are looking for a reliable and competent supplier for this type of service, which provides them with a highly cost-effective way of upgrading production without having to make a major investment in completely new tooling,” says Manfred Lausenhammer, Global Key Account Manager.
SIPA can refurbish hot runners and cold halves made by any major mold manufacturer, not just SIPA itself. We have already refurbished close to 900 molds covering a range of sizes from 10 to 192 cavities. But the biggest call comes from users of large molds, typically 96 & 144 cavities.
When we take on a refurbishment project, the first thing we do is carry out a preliminary inspection, and present our suggested program to the customer. Once we have an agreement, we carry out reverse engineering to analyse everything that we need to change. Then we quickly move ahead with the refurbishment itself. And since none of our customers wants an important mold out of service for any time at all, we move fast. Once the refurbishment is complete, the mold is just about as good as new as you can get.
As proof of its all-round capability, SIPA recently refurbished a 192 cavity hot runner. When our team first took on the project, it looked like it was going to be a relatively straightforward wear item exchange program. But a close inspection revealed that a complete HR refurbishment was in order.
The HR arrived at our refurbishment center in Atlanta with heavy signs of melt leakage due to damage in the manifolds. Thanks to the expertise of our engineers, the manifolds were repaired and upgraded to a more reliable engineering solution. The full scope of the work was plotted out by our engineers together with the customer and, thanks to our troubleshooting capabilities and the expertise to determine which parts could be reused and which replace, we arrived at a successful and highly cost-effective conclusion that the customer was very happy with.
The refurbishment program developed by SIPA has been effective on cold halves as well. A complete cold-half refurbishment performed during the summer on a 144 cavity mold stands as testament to what we can achieve. An audit we performed at the beginning of the project led to a high quality refurbishment program, and after less than two weeks the mold was back up and running in production, performing as if it were brand new.
North American customers now benefit from LCS, SIPA’s Life Cycle Service for PET preform molds. This is a comprehensive package of services aimed at increasing the overall effectiveness of their operation, through such activities as improving the reliability and availability of equipment, analyzing productivity and part quality, improving personnel performance, and collaborate on planning.