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August 1, 2003

1 Min Read
E-shots Web Exclusive: Cutting-edge cutlery mold refurbishment

Plastic cutlery, whether it's forks, knives, spoons, or the occasional hybrid spork, is consumed in such vast quantities that molders tasked with creating the parts are forced to run the programs nearly nonstop in a high-speed fashion that results in undue wear on the tool.

Crescent Industries (New Freedom, PA) saw this market opportunity and began refurbishing cutlery molds in 1994. Innovative techniques won more business.

The company had done some rework with conventional machining technology, but this method was slow and required additional hand polishing after-the-fact. The company directly machined the tools, but dealing with hardened tool steel made it quite difficult. In addition, Crescent's CAM software often had difficulty locating the steel, leaving the spindle "cutting air" and wasting valuable time.

The company considered purchasing a new machining center, but that move was deemed cost prohibitive, and Crescent opted for another solution. In the end, retrofitting its existing machinery with a state-of-science CNC control as well as a spindle motor upgrade brought impressive results at an economical cost.

The new control allows the center to look ahead at upcoming tool features so it can speed up in straight sections and brake prior to curves. This keeps the cutter in constant contact with the tool for greater efficiency.

A new high rpm spindle motor dramatically increased feedrates over 1000%, allowing jobs that once took hours to be completed in minutes. In the end, Crescent created a streamlined process, but kept costs down by upgrading an existing piece of machinery.

Crescent Industries
New Freedom, PA
(717) 235-3844
www.crescentind.com

Creative Evolution
Schaumburg, IL
(847) 301-0700
www.creat.com

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