The Rodon Blog - A Focus on American Manufacturing and Plastic Injection Molding

Create Jobs, Buy American Made

Posted by Paula Hynes

9/9/14 10:00 AM


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Topics: American Manufacturing, Made in America, American-made products, Manufacturing automation and innovation

Walmart Summit Spotlights American Manufacturers

Posted by Community User

9/2/14 12:30 PM

On August 14th, Walmart executives joined with state officials to help connect U.S. manufacturers and suppliers with buyers and government resources.  This summit is just one facet of Walmart’s strategic plan to increase U.S. made products in their stores by $250 billion dollars over the next ten years.  The Boston Consulting Group estimates this commitment will create 1 million jobs.

In July, Walmart invited more than 500 manufacturers and entrepreneurs to their headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas for an “Open Call” event.  Visiting businesses had the opportunity to meet with Walmart buyers and pitch their products.  Several  participants walked away with a sale to Walmart stores.

During the August U.S. Manufacturing Summit, President and CEO of K'NEX Brands and The Rodon Group, Michael Araten, was joined by fellow manufacturing President and CEO of Weber Grills, Jim Stephens for a conversation on what it takes to manufacturer in America and do business with Walmart. Michael Araten describes our company’s commitment to making K’NEX construction toys in the U.S. as “Patriotic Capitalism.”  “It started in the depths of the great depression. We wanted to keep jobs here.  The only way to save our people was to re-shore manufacturing” stated Araten. “We hoped and believed people would care where products are made. There is no bigger, no better brand than Made in America.”

With Walmart’s continued commitment to support American Manufacturers and what they produce, consumers will be able to find and buy products made here that create jobs here.  During a recent interview with PlasticsToday.com, Araten was asked if he believed Walmart was sincere about their commitment. “Walmart is very sincere about their desire to meet the demand for goods made in the USA. They have determined that consumers are looking for and prefer products that are made in America. They made many public comments at the Summit that they would work with suppliers to help them handle both the scale and price points needed so that Walmart can meet its mission of saving money and living better."

Walmart has also committed $10 million dollars to re-invigorating American Manufacturing.  Its philanthropic arm, the Walmart Foundation, will fund the five-year program which will offer grants to U.S. manufacturing innovators. North Carolina State’s College of Textiles was awarded one of the first grants to improve domestic textile manufacturing processes.  Other universities who received grant money include Georgia Tech Research Corporation, Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis, Oregon State University, Texas Tech University, University of Texas at Arlington and University of Georgia Research Foundation.

Walmart’s investment and involvement have positively impacted several US companies.  Here are a few that were cited by a former executive as true success stories.

  • Element Electronics recently opened a factory in Winnsboro, S.C., to assemble and package flat-screen TVs and expects to employ 500 people eventually at the facility.
  • 1888 Mills employs 200 workers in manufacturing in the U.S. Sales of the towels 1888 Mills makes for Walmart increased 24% in the past year, and the firm is expanding with a 500,000 square foot facility in Griffin, Ga.
  • American Home Manufacturing is moving production of comforters to South Carolina creating 200 jobs at that facility.

With the change in Walmart leadership and the continued commitment to finding ways to help manufacturers build better and cheaper products, some of the original skepticism regarding Walmart’s commitment is waning. Even the most skeptical would probably agree today that Walmart’s intentions seem honorable.  So, the next time you are shopping in Walmart pay attention to the labels.  You will have more opportunities to buy American-made products.




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Topics: American Manufacturing, American-made products

We're looking for your feedback

Posted by Jill Worth

8/21/14 10:40 AM

Over the past three years, The Rodon Group has been providing information on plastic injection molding. Our goal has been to educate our readers about the industry as well as the processes and pitfalls.  The response to our articles has been very encouraging and we want to do more.

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Topics: plastic injection molding,, plastic manufacturing

The Rodon Group and High-Volume Molding

Posted by Paula Hynes

8/14/14 10:30 AM

We often field phone calls from inventors or product designers who are looking for a plastic injection resource.  While, that is our core business, it is important to understand the difference between The Rodon Group and other small injection molding companies.

We specialize in high-precision, high-volume projects (we're talking millions, here).  To get a better understanding of the capabilities of The Rodon Group, we created a Q & A filled with useful information.

What are the minimum quantities you can order?

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Topics: plastic injection molding,, plastic injection molding costs, plastic injection molds and presses, The Rodon Group,

Want to learn more about plastic injection molding?

Posted by Paula Hynes

8/6/14 1:00 PM

The process of plastic injection molding has been around for years.  And over time injection machines, resins, and mold-building technology have greatly improved.  However, the basics still remain the same.  You take plastic pellets, melt them, and fill a mold with the melted plastic; the result, once cooled, is a plastic part.

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Topics: plastic injection molding,, plastic manufacturing, injection molding basics

Types of plastic molding

Posted by Paula Hynes

7/30/14 1:30 PM

In today’s manufacturing environment, plastics are being used to make everything from automotive body parts to human body parts. Each application requires a special manufacturing process that can mold the part based on specifications. This article provides a brief overview of the different types of molding and their advantages and applications.

Blow Molding – Well suited for hollow objects, like bottles

The process follows the basic steps found in glass blowing. A parison (heated plastic mass, generally a tube) is inflated by air. The air pushes the plastic against the mold to form the desired shape. Once cooled, the plastic is ejected.
The blow molding process is designed to manufacture high volume, one-piece hollow objects. If you need to make lots of bottles, this is the process for you. Blow molding creates very uniform, thin walled containers. And, it can do so very economically.

Compression Molding – Well suited for larger objects like auto parts.

The name of this molding method says everything.  A heated plastic material is placed in a heated mold and is then compressed into shape. The plastic can be in bulk but often comes in sheets. The heating process, called curing, insures the final part will maintain its integrity. As with other molding methods, once the part has been shaped, it is then removed from the mold. If sheeting plastic material is used, the material is first trimmed in the mold before the part is removed.

This method of molding is very suitable to high-strength compounds like thermosetting resins as well as fiberglass and reinforced plastics. The superior strength properties of the materials used in compression molding make it an invaluable process for the automotive industry.

Extrusion Molding – Well suited for long hollow formed applications like tubing, pipes and straws.

While other forms of molding uses extrusion to get the plastic resins into a mold, this process extrudes the melted plastic directly into a die. The die shape, not a mold, determines the shape of the final product. The extruded “tubing” is cooled and can be cut or rolled for shipment.

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Topics: plastic injection molding,, plastic injection molds and presses, The Rodon Group,

Building The Future|The Atlantic and Siemens team-up for insightful conversations.

Posted by Paula Hynes

7/23/14 12:30 PM

What do you get when you blend a seasoned moderator with political, policy and business leaders?  You get thought-provoking discussions about the state of our economy and manufacturing.

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Material Requirement Planning system improves manufacturing efficiency

Posted by Paula Hynes

7/16/14 9:45 AM

Like many companies, The Rodon Group recognizes our customers are our most valuable asset.  We pride ourselves on the ability to develop end-to-end manufacturing solutions that meet their demands on time, every time.

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Topics: plastic injection molding,, injection molding basics, Manufacturing automation and innovation, plastic injection molds and presses

The Rodon Group partners with Indian Creek Foundation

Posted by Jill Worth

7/10/14 1:00 PM

Several years ago, we began a search for a local resource to help us with some project work and we found ourselves visiting the Indian Creek Foundation/ICF Solutions located in nearby Souderton, Pennsylvania. ICF Solutions, a division of Indian Creek Foundation offers a facility-based work program for residents throughout Montgomery County. Since 1975, the Foundation’s mission is to “provide opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities; to live in and enrich the community throughout their lives.”  The foundation also provides supervised housing, life support services as well as behavioral health programs.

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Topics: American Manufacturing

How to Achieve Perfect Plastic Parts

Posted by Paula Hynes

7/9/14 10:03 AM

The adage “If it can go wrong, it will go wrong” should never be true in the world of injection molding.  In fact, problems can be easily avoided from the very beginning as long you are working with a turnkey precision molding manufacturer.  Some companies opt to use an outside design firm to design the mold, then contract another vendor to build the mold (often these were offshore mold builders) and another to run the parts.  By separating these responsibilities, they often sacrifice control, accountability and quality.

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Topics: plastic injection molding,, injection molding basics, Manufacturing automation and innovation, injection molded parts

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