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Mack Molding Adds Machining Centers to Build Ventilators

Medical ventilator
“An existing medical customer asked if we could help it meet the increased demand for their ventilators,” said Mack Molding President Jeff Somple. “After a quick analysis, the team determined the work would outpace our current capacity, so we immediately invested in the machines.”

Mack Molding has installed two new Haas three-axis machining centers for the production of ventilator components.

“An existing medical customer asked if we could help it meet the increased demand for their ventilators,” said Mack Molding President Jeff Somple. “After a quick analysis, the team determined the work would outpace our current capacity, so we jumped right in and immediately invested in the machines.”

Image: Phonlamaiphoto/Adobe Stock

Somple noted Mack’s metals department is supporting the project by making sheet metal parts, and the new center will allow for machining of plastic components, as well as inserting. The machining centers were delivered on May 4, 2020, and the company expects set-up and testing of the units to last about a week before entering into production.

In a statement to PlasticsToday, Somple commented that “as a contract manufacturer, we do not always know the end use of some of the components we make. The pandemic, however, has given us new insights into just how critical the work we, and our customers, do is. Our COVID-19 essential customers’ needs have exploded, from portable oxygen units in our Southern Division to diagnostic devices and pharmaceutical filters up north. It has been inspirational to see the way the industry is acting — the response really has been a mobilization of resources and know-how not seen since the days of World War II,” said Somple.

The increased demand for medical products has created some new challenges, Somple explained. “We have created new workspaces for people to work with appropriate social distancing, instituted aggressive cleaning protocols, provided PPE to employees, limited access to our buildings by outside visitors, and instituted max occupancy rules for conference rooms, offices, and break areas,” he said.

“We also need to keep our employees motivated, so we have been doing a number of activities to show our appreciation for their efforts. Once a week we have been bringing in lunches, a program that has allowed us to support local businesses as well.

“Additionally, it is our 100th anniversary year. As part of the celebration we had bumper stickers made and we put lottery tickets on cars of folks who were proudly displaying them. We are very much a family, and while we are working hard and facing conditions that no one ever planned on, it has been incredibly important not to lose sight of that,” said Somple.

Mack Molding is a custom plastics injection molder and supplier of contract manufacturing services including plastic part design, prototyping, molding, sheet metal fabrication, full-service machining, and medical device manufacturing. Founded in 1920, Mack is a privately owned business that operates 11 facilities throughout the world.

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