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A patented vibrational molding process (VIM) will be used to create a handling and transport case for the so-called Ground Zero Flag, a 60-by-30-foot American flag flown over the ground zero site in lower Manhattan for more than two months during the rescue and recovery operations following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on New York City.

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UPDATED: Ground Zero flag gets custom vibrational molded case

A patented vibrational molding process (VIM) will be used to create a handling and transport case for the so-called Ground Zero Flag, a 60-by-30-foot American flag flown over the ground zero site in lower Manhattan for more than two months during the rescue and recovery operations following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on New York City.

The case, which is made from linear low-density polyethylene, was requested from Unifuse LLC (Staatsburg, NY) by Ground Zero Flag.org, a volunteer organization dedicated to the service and memory of the first responders to the terrorist attacks on New York City on September 11, 2001. As the 10th anniversary of the attacks approaches, the flag will be displayed at several events.sc00002bac_0.jpg

Ground Zero flag

The Unifuse case will first be used on May 28 during the N.Y. Mets Citi Field Veteran's Tribute. Subsequent events include the flag raising, display, and folding ceremonies at 116 Mott Street, in New York city from September 7-25, and ceremonial events at the New York City Veteran's Day Parade, to be held Nov. 11, at 23rd Street and 5th Avenue, in New York City.

Jeffrey R. Bookstein, Unifuse LLC managing director called the project a "unique honor." Unifuse says its patented VIM process imbue parts with inherent strength and durability outlast competing products manufactured via injection, extrusion, thermoforming, blowmolding, and rotational molding. The process utilizes aluminum tooling and can customize cases with handles, latch systems, dollies, hitches, fork pockets, and other add-on components.

Bookstein told PlasticsToday that his company is currently finishing up tooling for the case, and will post pictures of finished parts in the next one to two weeks. Unifuse  has been discussing the project for around six weeks, with Bookstein noting that things “came together quickly” once the design was nailed down.

Bookstein said the approximate dimensions of the case at the top will be 66 by 28 by 18 inches in terms of length, width, and height. The case’s cover measures 66.5 by 28.5 by 2.5 inches, with a taper down the case of close to 4 inches. The cover features a slightly raised cross section to provide additional rigidity and structure, and the combined weight, when empty, will be between 35 – 40 lb.

Bookstein said Unifuse’s VIM process utilizes a single surface mold (male, female, or combination), carefully controlled heat, and vibration to fuse thermoplastics into a molded shape. Parts can be large, tooling costs are comparatively low. and the process can mold inserts, grooves, laminates.

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