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Lakeshore Plastics Expands Capacity, Turnkey Services to Meet Demand

Coming soon are specialized molds designed to produce custom plastic caps in various sizes and textures at a lower initial cost.

Geoff Giordano

July 1, 2024

2 Min Read
molding plastic cap
Image courtesy of Lakeshore Plastics

In a sign of robust injection molding demand, Utah’s Lakeshore Plastics expanded capacity of its Orem manufacturing facility by about 50% to 12,000 square feet.

Lakeshore produces about four million caps annually and is adding equipment for cap lining. The company owns five injection molding machines (IMMs) from Absolute Haitian, ranging from 100 to 427 tons. Three of those IMMs are paired with top-entry robots from Absolute Robot. Lakeshore’s new manufacturing space can accommodate three more IMMs.

Robots bring precision, speed, and consistency to process.

Automation is critical to Lakeshore’s business. Removing high-end jewelry cases from a mold, for example, requires careful handling to maintain aesthetics, a task that is best performed by a robot. Molding polished parts of clear Tritan copolyester, which degrades quickly with any variation in cycle time, also requires automation. “The ARI top-entry robot is faster and more consistent at removing the part from the mold and prevents damage that could be introduced if a machine operator so much as bumps the mold when removing the part,” said Lakeshore CEO Kyle Pontius.

For mold fabrication, the company added a CNC lathe and three electrical discharge machines (wire, sinker, and hole popper) to complement its CNC milling machine.

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“In the coming months, we're making available specialized molds to easily swap logos and textures on numerous cap sizes to produce a custom closure at a much lower initial cost,” Pontius said.

Support for companies reshoring molding operations.

Lakeshore is helping many companies onshore molds or rebuild molds from a previous supplier that are difficult to remove. For these transitions, Lakeshore helps customers confirm mold and tooling compatibility with its facility, match material and color, review quality control requirements, and plan logistics.

Starting as a mold fabrication company in 2019, Lakeshore provides turnkey services from engineering through to assembly.

“The benefit to customers of our turnkey experience is risk mitigation,” Pontius said. “From CAD modeling to in-house fabrication and repair to prototyping and mass production, the development cycle is under one roof. If a mold has an issue, rather than having it taken out of the machine and shipped away for repair, we can diagnose the problem and repair it in a matter of hours, minimizing downtime and maximizing production schedules,” said Pontius.

About the Author(s)

Geoff Giordano

Geoff Giordano is a tech journalist with more than 30 years’ experience in all facets of publishing. He has reported extensively on the gamut of plastics manufacturing technologies and issues, including 3D printing materials and methods; injection, blow, micro and rotomolding; additives, colorants and nanomodifiers; blown and cast films; packaging; thermoforming; tooling; ancillary equipment; and the circular economy. Contact him at [email protected].

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