A major supplier to medical device OEMs, custom molder Trademark Plastics Inc. (TPI) experienced a 40% surge in demand for molded parts for syringes, respiratory devices, and other components during the COVID-19 pandemic. Wrestling with an ongoing skilled labor shortage and having to operate with a reduced workforce because of COVID-19, Trademark turned to increased automation. It chose Wittmann Battenfeld robots because “they are easy to program, easy to use, and very low maintenance,” said David Carty, TPI CEO. One robot does the work of more than three people, he noted, and for every new injection molding machine TPI buys, it also buys a robot. It currently has 13 Wittmann robots in its facility, two of which it bought just this year. Carty’s advice to other injection molders: “If you’re not lights out in the future, you might not survive.”
TPI also invested in a material handling system from Wittmann Battenfeld this year. The Central Material Handling System with an M7.3 controller, which loads material to 36 molding machines, has helped the Riverside, CA–based company reduce material handling costs.