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amer i can
mol d bui l der
Volume 23 Volume 23 No. 3
IN THIS ISSUE: IN THIS ISSUE:
Steve Rotman Steve Rotman
a message from our president
e have come back now from a very successful, relaxing and intriguing An-
nual Convention in beautiful San Juan. Did I say relaxing? With 100+
friends, families, and partners, YES!! If you have never experienced the
AMBA’s annual convention, I need to personally challenge you to make
an effort to do so! I am positive that your business strategy will be challenged, refreshed
and then renewed when you go back to your businesses. You will have the time to casu-
ally engage with our Partners and learn of all the advances that they see in technology
as well as in the market place itself. You will renew your passion for your own establish-
ments, as you share war stories, strategies, and accomplishments with fellow mold shop
owners. This has truly been a unique opportunity to sit with fellow competitors/Part-
ners and gain understanding, along with a little wisdom, of how to better succeed in each
of the businesses that we passionately pour ourselves into. Unfortunately, you might get
a little sand in your shoes……………
Speaking of the convention, we were given the opportunity to recognize and thank Pete
Manship as he has handed the reigns of Mold Craft over to two great young men, Justin
McPhee and Tim Bartz. Although Pete is somewhat still involved with the company, he
is slowly relinquishing his duties, and is planning his 2
life (can you guess what that
is?). While a successful shop owner, Pete also served on the AMBA board of directors
for 12 years, as well as President for two. His uncanny insight into business, his love and
passion for moldmaking propelled Pete into the leader that he is. His participation and
leadership will be sorely missed, but we wish you well Pete! If you’re not sure who Pete
is, look at the latest ad for the AMBA, stating “if you’re not a part of the AMBA, why
not??” He’s really not as tough as he looks there!! A sincere THANKS and appreciation
We are ramping up the next big event, and that will have its challenges. The 2009 Fall
Conference is once again scheduled for Washington D.C.! After a small group of AMBA
members attended a D.C. Fly-In in February, we realized how to help you to truly con-
nect with your current respective state representatives. We learned at last years fall
conference that 10 votes will get a legislator’s attention. We have the power, along with
our employees and communities, to make a large enough impact to these folks, to hear
what we are up against with current regulations, as well as any future bills being con-
sidered. This will be an excellent platform for you to see, meet, and understand what
your respective elected ofﬁcials feel about your business issues and problems. You will
walk away with the clear knowledge of what your legislator believes and stands for. We
then will have the ability to take that knowledge back to our companies, communities,
and infrastructure to help “teach” them what we have learned. The Tea Parties are just
Enacting a Mold Lien law Enacting a Mold Lien law
(continued on Pg 7)
2009 Convention Summary
New Board Members/Ofﬁcers
Mold Builder of the Year
2009 Convention Summary
New Board Members/Ofﬁcers
Mold Builder of the Year
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Te oﬃ cial publication of
American Mold Builders Association
Leading the Future of U.S.
3601 Algonquin Rd, Suite 304 • Rolling Meadows, IL 60008
phone: 847.222.9402 •fax: 847.222.9437
email: firstname.lastname@example.org • website: www.amba.org
Oﬃ cers and Board of Directors
Steve Rotman, Ameritech Die & Mold, Inc.
Mike Armbrust, Mako Mold Corporation
Shawn McGrew, Prodigy Mold & Tool
Kent Hanson, H.S. Die & Engineering, Inc.
Association Legal Councel
Richard N. Mueller & Associates
Board of Directors
Michael Armbrust, Mako Mold Corporation
Shawn McGrew, Prodigy Mold & Tool
Kent Hanson, H.S. Die & Engineering, Inc.
Chris Jones, Rapid Die & Engineering
Robert Earnhardt, Superior Tooling
Todd Finley, Commercial Tool & Die
Dan Glass, Strohwig Industries
Scott Harris, Harris Precision Mold
Roger Klouda. M.S.I. Mold Builders
Donna Pursell, Prestige Mold, Inc.
Scott Phipps, United Tool & Mold
Robert Vaughan, Dauntless Molds
Mike Walter, MET Plastics
Melissa Millhuﬀ, Executive Director
Sue Daniels, Member Services Coordinator
Shannon Merrill, National Chapter Coordinator
Kim Cobb, Administrative Coordinator
Te American Mold Builder is published four times annually in spring,
summer, fall and winter by the American Mold Builders Association.
Editor: Melissa Millhuﬀ; Assistant Editor: Sue Daniels; Contribut-
ing Author: Clare Goldsberry; Layout & Design: Controlled Color,
Inc. phone 630/295-9210; Publishing: Independant Print Services,
phone 847-397-1701; Copy deadline: 45 days preceeding publication
date. Contact AMBA at 847/222-9402 or email email@example.com for
advertising information, article submission ideas, or a subscription.
Opinions expressed in this publication may or may not reﬂect the views
of the Association, and do not necessarily represent oﬃ cial positions or
policies of the Association or its members.
It’s hard to get excited about anything anymore, isn’t it?
You turn on the news…it’s all bad. You read the paper…it’s
all bad. The funny thing is that I am more excited than
I’ve been in a long time. At the AMBA we’re doing some
amazing things, and we’re making good things happen.
As you all know we have partnered with several other trade
associations to make some headway on payment terms for U.S. moldmakers.
We also have a seat at meetings with GM to work on a better way to execute
in the future. We’re adding a new AMBA chapter in the Erie, Pennsylvania
area! Eight new companies have joined AMBA as approved members in a
matter of two weeks. We are making things happen!!
Don’t forget the Fall Conference in Washington, D.C. will be a chance for
you to get in on this phenomenal feeling of change. We’ll be meeting with
Congressmen from your area to talk about what you are dealing with. We
will be creating change, one person at a time, one state at a time.
The planning the 2010 AMBA Annual Convention in Orlando, FL is well
underway. We’re lucky enough to be there with MME 2010, so be sure to
mark your calendar to shoot two birds with one stone. Bring along your
family to spend some time with them in this fabulous location while you
attend the convention and trade show.
I’m super excited about what the future holds for the AMBA…I hope you
In this Issue:
Spring Business Forecast Survey ...................................................................4
Enacting Mold Lien Law Legislation in Your State .......................................8
Why You Need Hard Milling in Plastic Injection Mold Making ...................8
Vendor Tooling: Te Not So Missing Link .....................................................9
AMBA’s 2009 Mold Builder of the Year........................................................11
AMBA 2009 Chapter of the Year Award .....................................................13
New AMBA Board Members Announced ....................................................14
Board Elects Oﬃ cers .....................................................................................14
AMBA 2009 Annual Convention Wrap ........................................................15
Tank You to Our Convention Sponsors & Tabletop Exhibitors ................22
AMBA 2009 Annual Convention Photos .....................................................24
AMBA Convention Beach Olympics Event ..................................................26
Point of View .................................................................................................26
AMBA Past Convention Locations ...............................................................26
AMBA News ...................................................................................................27
Chapter Spotlight - Chicago Chapter ...........................................................30
Chapter News ................................................................................................31
Member News ...............................................................................................35
News for Die Casters .....................................................................................37
Layoﬀs - How To Avoid Adding Insult To Injury .............................37
Worker Teft Is Up - Recession To Blame ........................................38
Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) - New Regulations .............38
Health Plan Coverage for College Students and ‘Disability’ Changes ...40
Trying Times .....................................................................................40
Tax & Business
Retaining Key Employeess ................................................................41
Annual Update on Expense Reporting and Per Diem Rates ...........42
New Diesel-Fueled Car Credit...........................................................42
Retirement, Gift, and Estate Planning Limitations for 2009 .........43
Business Success Strategies
Listening Like a Leader ....................................................................43
Classiﬁed Corner ...........................................................................................44
Tech Corner ...................................................................................................44
Advertiser’s Index .........................................................................................46
Employment is Up for 7% of the Spring respondents, compared to
11% of the respondents to the Winter 2009 survey; the Same for 40%
(compared to 57% in the Winter 2009 survey); and Down for 53%, a
signiﬁcant decline from 33% three months ago. The current average
number of shop employees stands at 20, down from 24 three months
ago. The current average number of design and engineering employees
stands at four, down from an average of ﬁve where it has stood for
many quarters previously. Work-week hours for shop employees
dropped to an average of 40 from 43 three months ago; and for design
and engineering employees it stands at 41, down from 42 hours three
months ago, a drop of 4 hours over six months.
Two survey questions were presented for the Spring 2009 Survey. The
ﬁrst one: Have your technology purchases been for mold/die work or
other applications? Explain/List. A total of 61 respondents commented
to this question, 12 said they have purchased software to upgrade their
CAD/CAM capabilities; 36 have made purchases of machinery and
equipment such as high-speed machines, CNC machining centers,
QA equipment, EDM, among others; 3 said they have purchased both
hardware/machines and software. The remaining respondents said they
had not made purchases, purchases are on hold for now, or shifting
more manufacturing to China and India per customer demand.
A second question asked, with a choice of ﬁve responses: What’s your
strategy to build better business in down economy? Of the respondents
to this question, 38% said “Implement a marketing plan; 14% said
“Advertise more;” 7% said “Hire a sales person;” 23% said “Invest in
newer/better technology;” and 18% said “Do nothing until it’s over.”
It’s obvious that most shops know they need to do something to create
new business and get backlog up, however in talking to moldmakers,
there is still a lot of pessimism about the economy and manufacturing
in particular. Such comments made by respondents as, “This is bad and
will not change soon,” and “Not much mold work, no work. People laid
off not good,” shows a gloomy outlook by many.
On the other end of the spectrum, comments such as, “The down
economy has not affected us too bad, but we are a small shop and
diversiﬁed into many different areas and customers,” and “So far we
feel very fortunate, been busy through the 1
quarter, little lull now but
appears to be some good things happening again, and receiving PO’s!”
shows that there are pockets of good activity.
One moldmaker even commented recently that “I think all those shops
that have gone out of business over the past few years have helped those
of us that are left to pick up more work.” ❏
Spring Business Forecast Survey Indicates
Worsening Conditions for Many Shops
The AMBA released the results of its Spring 2009 Business Forecast
Survey showing that optimism has faded along with business. Current
business conditions are Good for only 14% of the respondents, down
a full 11% of the Winter quarter’s survey. This indicates that business
conditions have eroded considerably over the past three months, with
only 2% of the Spring survey’s respondents reporting Excellent current
business conditions compared to 5% in the Winter and a huge drop
from the Fall’s survey (11%). Fair business conditions exist for 35%,
also down from 42% of the respondents in the Winter survey. Business
conditions are Poor for 38% of the respondents, a huge increase from
the 23% of the respondents to the Winter Survey; and Bad for 11% of
the respondents, also up from 5% of the respondents three months ago.
Projections for business over the next three months show that company
owners are more pessimistic about any economic recovery happening
any time soon, with only 33% of the respondents expecting business
to Increase Moderately, up considerably from the 23% in the Winter
survey. Only 35% expect business to Remain the Same, compared
to 44% in the Winter survey. We saw a slight uptick to 5%, in those
respondents that expect business to Increase Substantially, from 4% in
the Winter survey. However, a few more respondents expect business to
Decrease Moderately (17% vs. 16% in the Winter survey). There were
also fewer respondents that expect business to Decrease Substantially
(10% Spring 2009 vs. 13% Winter 2009), if one wants to ﬁnd any
glimmer of optimism.
When asked to compare their company’s current level of business with
that of three months ago, responses indicate that an upturn for mold
shops could be on the horizon.
Quoting activity is Up for 41% of respondents compared to only
18% of respondents in the previous survey; the Same for 30%,
compared to 42% in the Winter 2009 survey; and Down for just 29%,
compared to 40% in the last quarter. This uptick in quoting activity
shows that companies are preparing for new programs and products,
which supports recent reports that inventories are bottoming out and
companies are on the cusp of spending capital funds to get rolling again.
This is about three months behind schedule however, given that many
companies release new budgets on January 1.
Shipments are Up for 10% of the respondents compared to 15% last
quarter, indicating the slow business climate of Q1. Shipments stayed
about the Same for 30% of respondents compared to 39%, which is
down slightly from the Winter 2009 survey; and Down for 59% of the
respondents compared to 46% of the respondents in the Winter 2009
survey, another considerable increase for the second consecutive survey.
Backlog is Up for only 11% of the respondents, a slight drop from the
13% in the Winter survey; the Same for 23% (up slightly from the 20%
in Winter 2009 survey); and Down for 66%, a signiﬁcant drop compared
to the 54% of respondents of the Winter 2009 survey. These responses
would continue to indicate that while there’s a ﬂurry of quoting activity,
there’s still not a lot of work in the pipeline.
Proﬁts in the Spring survey are Up for 7%, a slight increase from 6% of
the respondents to the Winter survey; the Same for 30%, compared to
40% in the Winter 2009 survey; and Down for 63% of the respondents
compared to 54% three months ago, showing continued downward
pricing pressures on mold companies.
So, You Think You Have a Great Idea?
Introducing a new book by Clare Goldsberr y that will help
you and the inventor. So, You Think You Have a Great Idea!
guides the inventor through the maze of dealing with plastic
part designers, mold designers, moldmakers and molders. It
offers tips to moldmakers and molders on how not to get stuck
with someone’s great idea, and tips to inventors on how not to
deal with mold shops. First rule for inventors - have money!
Second rule - never ask a moldmaker to build the tool now in
exchange for a piece of the action later. If you’ve ever dealt
with an inventor, or know inventors who need help dealing with
the plastics industr y, this is the book! A special price at $6.95
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The AMBA Business Forecast Survey was developed to provide AMBA members with information
on the current business conditions and a projection of the upcoming months. The Spring 2009
Survey resulted a response rate of 45% from AMBA members. Business remains "Good"
for 14% of the respondents, and for 2% of the respondents it is "Excellent."
AMBA Spring 2009 Business Forecast Survey Results
AMBA Members Current Business
Projection of Business Over the Next 3
Up Same Down
Current Level of Business in Last 3 Months
Current Work-Week Hours
Average Shop Hours Average Design & Engineering Hours
Current Number Plant Employees
Average Shop Employees Average Design & Engineering Employees
Onsite Registration: $500
AMBA Member: $262.50
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Speak Out: A Message From Our President
(Continued from front cover)
a prelude to the Townhall Meetings that I believe will start popping up,
as more and more Americans are realizing that we have lost our way. The
time to get involved is NOW, and the way is the Fall Conference. Before
the event, there will be webinars to help answer any questions, concerns,
or discuss approaches, so that everyone understands and feels comfort-
able with the one-on-one meetings. The next round of major elections
will be one year away from this event. This is a crucial year to be able to
make an educated, reasoned decision on how to change the things in your
country that affect each of us.
When this issue hits the “news stands” we will be at NPE. Once again
AMBA will have a booth in the Mold Maker’s Pavilion at the show,
promoting the world’s BEST mold manufacturers, distributing member-
ship directories, collecting leads of potential mold buyers, and answer-
ing attendee questions. Please take the time to visit the booth, introduce
yourself to the staff, and see what the AMBA is doing for YOU! We are
excited for the opportunities that will be available to all the members
from contacts at the show!
As I am writing this we are very close to a called meeting with the
President’s Automotive Task Force. I have to say it was an unprecedent-
ed meeting in Detroit that brought ﬁve trade associations and represen-
tation from independent shops from across the U.S. and Canada. Sitting
together we drafted a letter to send to the OEM’s and Tier 1’s to try to
bring the plight of the collective North American toolmakers in light of
an imminent Chapter 11 of Chrysler and quite possibly GM. We also are
approaching them for better payment terms sighting the viability of U.S.
toolmakers as related to automotive tooling. While I do not yet know
the outcome of all this effort, I want to assure you that we have been in-
volved in a positive way, and I am hoping with all my heart that we will
see the fruit of all of these efforts. I want to commend Melissa and staff
as this has consumed a huge amount of their time, yet they still get done
the other tasks that were already assigned. This has been a monumen-
tal task, but one that I hope in the end will get the recognition that the
AMBA is really the voice and heart of American moldmakers.
Wishing you much success, as we all go through a year of transition and
Continuing to ﬁght for the right to be an American entrepreneur called
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equipment and AMBA member shops in the area are sub-
contracting work to us. I’ve learned some new machining
processes and new technologies from networking with other
shops. This is an opportunity I wouldn’t have had without
my membership in the AMBA.”
Ed Siciliano, President, Circle Mold and Machine Co. Inc.,
Tallmadge, Ohio, and president of the AMBA Ohio Chapter.
Why You Need Hard Milling in Plastic
Injection Mold Making
By: Randy Hough
One of the best ways to save time and
money in injection mold making is by
using hard milling techniques. In fact, if
you are not already hard milling, you will
soon ﬁnd yourself at a distinct competitive
Why use hard milling?
• To save time
• Reduce set ups
• Eliminate a great deal of EDM work
• Eliminate hand ﬁtting, especially of
contoured shut-off surfaces
• Produce a surface that is much more
true to the CAD model
• Eliminate a great deal of stoning and polishing
• Move work through the shop more quickly
• Eliminate many grinding steps
• Shorten delivery dates
Those are some pretty compelling reasons to use hard milling! After all,
who doesn't want to achieve any or all of the above beneﬁts?
Do you need specialized CNC milling machines?
Yes and no. No, you don’t have to go out and buy a half million dollar
vertical milling machine, in fact, you can do a lot on a basic Bridgeport
type of machine. But, if you are serious about hard milling, you should
deﬁnitely invest in a machine that is designed for this purpose.
You need a CNC milling machine that is rigid enough to withstand the
forces generated by the high spindle speeds, rapid feed rates and the
vibrations caused during machining. Nowadays there are many high
quality machines that are speciﬁcally designed for high
speed and hard milling.
A CNC milling machine used for hard milling should have
• A column and base that is heavy
• Box ways with linear roller bearings
• A spindle that is core cooled
• Ball screws that are dual supported
• Thermal stability and structural rigidity
Do you need specialized software?
Again, yes and no. No, you don’t need CAD/CAM software that is
engineered speciﬁcally for hard milling. But your quality will suffer as
a consequence. This is because the requirements for hard milling are
different than conventional milling of soft steel. The typical software
will cause the cutter to move in a jerky manner, which will shorten tool
life dramatically and fail to achieve the desired accuracy and surface
Some other tool path requirements are:
• The need to control how the cutter enters and exits the cut
• The need to maintain a steady, constant chip load
• Ensure that the shock conditions for each roughing and ﬁnishing
pass are maintained
Enacting Mold Lien Law Legislation in
By: David Lefere of Bolhouse, Vander Hulst, Risko & Barr PC
As a practicing attorney in Michigan and
an advocate for the Michigan Tool and
Die Industry I have had the opportunity
to become intimately familiar with the
Michigan Special Tools Lien Act and the
Michigan Mold Lien Act (the “Acts”).
The Acts grant tool, die and mold makers
the right to establish the ability to enforce
a lien on tools, dies and molds that are
designed, manufactured, or repaired
and shipped without payment. The Acts
provide a remedy to tool and mold builders
who are required to infuse hundreds of
thousands of dollars into the design and
manufacture of tooling and molding, and then are subsequently unable
to collect payment. Other states, such as Ohio and Illinois, also have
tooling lien laws similar to Michigan’s. Recently, I have been asked
how states without tooling lien laws should go about getting lien laws
Simply put, it needs to start at a grass roots level. The most important
thing that needs to happen is for the tool and mold shops to get
organized and be fully educated on how useful and effective lien laws
can be when strictly adhered to. Other things that are beneﬁcial when
trying to get lien laws enacted or amended are:
1. Appointing a spokesperson or persons (sometimes referred to as
a lobbyist) who is knowledgeable regarding lien laws;
2. Gain support of key representatives (preferably bi-partisan) who,
together with your spokesperson, can use their inﬂuence with
other members of the state’s leadership;
3. Start a letter writing campaign. The tool and mold shops should
write their state representatives informing them of the need for
lien laws and asking for his/her support;
4. Request an in-person meeting with your representatives; putting a
face to something always helps.
5. Don’t underestimate the inﬂuence of the local and/or state
Chamber of Commerce. Ask for an opportunity to attend a board
meeting. Inform them of your position and seek their support
- that is what Chambers of Commerce are for and they are happy
to help local businesses.
6. Draft the legislation for the Legislature. No need to recreate
the wheel; look to the lien laws in Michigan and Ohio for the
The tips above are certainly not an exhaustive list as to what should
be done in order to get lien laws passed or amended. However, it does
give you a good overview of some of the things that should be thought
of prior to the start of such a movement. Having been a part of this
process in Michigan over the past few years, I learned what works,
what doesn’t work and what roadblocks one can expect. The key is to
not get frustrated and to continue to build relationships with people and
organizations that have inﬂuence. ❏
The idea is to produce a surface that is true to the model, dimensionally
accurate, has a good surface ﬁnish and do it quickly! Sounds like a lot
to ask, but it is done everyday by progressive moldmaking shops around
the world. Having the right software is essential.
What about the spindle?
The cutting tool and the tool holder act as one unit. The spindle must be
able to protect the integrity of this unit. Therefore, it must be designed
for the high speeds that are necessary. Direct drive spindles are called
for in hard milling applications. Gear and belt driven spindles are not
advised. The control of heat and vibration is also extremely important.
The importance of the spindle cannot be overlooked because it is
the link between the machine tool and the cutter. If the spindle is
inadequate, the entire process will suffer greatly.
Do you need special CNC tooling?
Shrink ﬁt tool holders and an HSK interface are mandatory for hard
milling. Sure, you can use other methods, but this combination has
proven to be very effective. These tool holders are the most accurate
available today and they are very easy to use.
The HSK interface is simply the most accurate, secure and stiff type in
use today. Failing to use the proper tool holders will shorten tool life
dramatically because the chip load will fall on ﬂute and quickly cause
The hard milling of plastic injection molds is becoming a standard
method of moldmaking. There are so many beneﬁts associated that
shops who are slow to get on board will soon be at a serious loss to
With today’s sophisticated CNC milling machines, coated carbide end
mills, ceramic inserts, advanced software and reasonable prices, hard
milling is within the reach of almost any competitive mold shop.
Randy Hough has worked as a plastic injection mold maker since
1978. He heads a group of industry professionals who have a web site
dedicated to injection moldmaking. You can learn the latest trends
and techniques by visiting www.global-plastic-injection-molding.com.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Randy_Hough ❏
Leverage Your Membership
and Save on Shipping.
Your membership with AMBA entitles you to savings on your LTL (less-than-truckload)
shipments with YRC. This savings program is a free beneﬁt of your AMBA membership.
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Copyright ©2009 YRC Inc.
Vendor Tooling: The Not-So-Missing Link
By: Laurie A. Harbour-Felax, President, of Harbour-Felax Group
As tool manufacturers you clearly understand how important tooling
is to the end quality of the product being produced. The best tools
are designed considering quality, efﬁciency and functionality for the
entire life cycle of the part. Without such consideration manufacturers
of parts will continually struggle with ﬁrst time quality and overall
performance. Recently Harbour-Felax Group published a study on
Vendor Tooling in the automotive industry. We called it The Not So
Missing Link highlighting the necessary linkage between product and
process in any industry not just automotive. Our study reveals that
understanding tooling and its impact on the interrelationship between
suppliers and end customers, such as the automotive OEMs, is essential
to maintaining a solid value chain. Furthermore many of the critical
players in the decision process do not understand how important this
not-so-missing link is to the end deliverable.
The North American tool industry has gone through the most difﬁcult
times in the last 20 years and in the last 18 months things have become
more desperate with the fall of the economy. The study was a result of
several months of gathering data through our own process of tooling
audits conducted with many Tier I automotive, aerospace and other
industry suppliers. We interviewed over 50 suppliers, 25 tool vendors,
all of the major automotive OEM’s and various automotive expert
analysts to help us validate the conclusions developed in this study.
All of these efforts combined with our team’s extensive experience in
manufacturing, tooling and various transportation industries allowed us
to publish this extensive 400 page study.
The following are the key ﬁndings of the study:
• There is an 8% average cost gap between the Domestic Three
(Chrysler, Ford, GM) and the New Domestics (Honda, Nissan and
• The companies with the lower tool cost on average spend more on
upfront design and engineering in 59% of the cases of our study.
• Companies that provide progress payments to the tool vendors
throughout the development process have a healthier supply base,
less initial cost and better supplier relations.
• There is a huge gap between perception and reality between
suppliers and tool vendors and the OEM’s they service. OEM’s
believe that suppliers and tool vendors understand their policies
and the process of which they can work together more effectively
when in reality this perception is very different.
• The data validates that it is lower cost to build dies in low cost
countries, HOWEVER, our audit data does not include ancillary
costs such as travel, tool retroﬁtting and other things that occur
once the tools are brought to North America. Taking this into
account the study does not reveal a cost difference large enough to
warrant a whole sale source of tools to low cost countries.
• Program volume accuracy is different for all OEM’s and suppliers
perceive this as a tool for the OEM’s to manipulate the suppliers.
• Selection of suppliers and tool manufacturers is more robust
among the New Domestics and as a result suppliers are involved
further up front in development, they receive progress payments
and are generally healthier.
• Tier I bankruptcy is a major issue in today’s economy and a
speciﬁc risk to tool vendors that have shipped tools and not
received payment because the product has not gone through PPAP.
These conclusions are only the highlights of the many weaknesses in
the value chain as identiﬁed in the study. But more important than what
the issues are, the focus must be on solutions. The study outlines many
of the things that the OEM’s must do to better manage this situation and
reduce their risk while building a healthier supply base. Additionally,
the tool vendors and suppliers have a role in managing their business
more effectively to cope with the strategies of the OEM’s. Technical
competency and organizational stability are some of the many solutions
identiﬁed for suppliers.
This study simply scratches the surface by examining this all too
sensitive issue of tooling in the automotive industry. Our suspicions that
these issues exist as signiﬁcantly in other industries such as aerospace,
medical, etc. have been validated based on our work with companies in
The study has reached the U.S. task force for the automotive industry
recently and they are shocked by the ﬁndings of the study and the
signiﬁcant work done by the tooling industry to raise these issues
through the difﬁcult time of saving the automotive industry.
The next step in this journey has been a call to action for all tooling
manufacturers, suppliers and OEM’s in all industries to combine their
efforts and work towards a collective solution to this problem in order
to encourage a healthier manufacturing industry for all. We are happy
to support this effort with another tooling study in the next year to dig
deeper into the issues scratched in this study.
I encourage you to consider your support in this effort and in purchasing
the current study to better understand the issues, your customer and
your role in solving this delicate issue. ❏
Bill Mach of Mach Mold Inc. Awarded
AMBA’s Mold Builder of the Year
The AMBA presented its
annual “Mold Builder of
the Year” award to Bill
Mach, owner of Mach
Mold Inc., Benton Harbor,
MI. The award was
presented at the AMBA
2009 Annual Convention
in San Juan, Puerto Rico,
(Feb. 28-March 5). Bill has
been in the moldmaking
business since graduating
from Ferris State College with a degree in Tool and Die, and completing
his apprenticeship at Advanced Products in 1974.
Bill began building molds in his garage in the mid-1970s, and in
1981, Bill and his wife, Vicki, opened Mach Mold and Die Company
in Riverside, MI. Over the past nearly three decades, Bill has grown
his company into a premier mold manufacturing company. In 1997,
the company changed its name to Mach Mold Inc., and moved its
50 employees to a new, 30,000-square-foot facility in the Urbandale
Extremely active in the AMBA, Bill has served on the Southwest
Michigan Chapter Board for 21 years, the ﬁrst 10 years as Education
Chairman and the last 11 years as President. “He is the driving force
that keeps the chapter going during these challenging times,” said Ken
Patzkowsky of Hanson Mold, the person who nominated Bill for the
Bill supports the national AMBA by attending conventions, recruiting
new members, attending monthly Board meetings and organizing the
yearly social events such as the AMBA golf outing. He has served on
the AMBA National Board nominating committee for the past ﬁve
Bill is committed to education and apprenticeship programs, working
closely with Lake Michigan College to improve and update the
curriculum. Over the years, he has trained over 40 apprentice mold
makers at Mach Mold. He was also instrumental in Berrien County’s
school-to-work program that brought local schools and mold shops
together to build a working relationship to promote the apprenticeship
program. He continues to work with the Berrien County ISD to promote
awareness of the mold making industry by organizing large groups of
students from local school districts to tour Mach Mold and other local
AMBA member facilities.
Bill is always willing to share information with other AMBA members.
Situations such as dealing with customer bankruptcy, OHSA audits,
time ticket procedures to comply with the Michigan DOL (which
has different standards than the Federal DOL), and how to handle a
shipment of machinery with the least amount of ﬁnancial impact, should
the equipment be damaged in transit, are just a few examples.
Bill is the founder and president of the Berrien Tooling Coalition,
a work-share program among members which was started to help
members maximize their machines. It also provides ways to utilize
specialty machines among members so that not every shop has to have
every piece of equipment.
“I was pleasantly surprised,” Mach said in an interview. “I was sitting
there listening to all the accomplishments wondering who’d been
doing all the things I’d been doing for all those years. It was nice to be
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recognized like this by my peers in the industry.”
Mach was presented with a check for $5,000 from Progressive
Components to be used for an industry-related education program of
his choice. After meeting with the Southwest Michigan Chapter board,
Mach said they have decided to pool the funds awarded to the chapter
as Chapter of the Year with that awarded to Mach, and give it to Lake
“Lake Michigan College has been a long term partner in apprenticeship
and employee training, helping us provide the training we need
locally for our employees,” Mach said. “We’re hoping to continue that
relationship, so the Board met to discuss how to approach the college.
We’ve asked them to come to us with a wish list of things they need to
ensure the continued health of the training program. We asked them to
respond by March 25.” ❏
equipment. “It helps out with the peaks and valleys, and while we still
have to be competitive with each other, it’s good to know that we can
work together to get machine time locally,” said Mach.
The chapter also works closely with other industry trade groups in
Michigan, as well as with State Representatives and Senators, inviting
them to attend and speak at annual graduation banquets. Recently,
Michigan State Representative, John Proos, requested a meeting with
the members of the AMBA chapter, the Berrien Tooling Coalition and
the National Tooling and Machining Association to get the groups’ input
on the current economy, speciﬁcally the automotive industry, and how it
is affecting their businesses.
The Southwest Michigan Chapter was presented a check for $5,000
from Progressive Components to be used for an industry-related
program of their choice. The Southwest Michigan Chapter board met
and decided to pool the funds awarded to the chapter with that awarded
to Bill Mach as Mold Builder of the Year, and give it to Lake Michigan
“Lake Michigan College has been a long term partner in apprenticeship
and employee training, helping us provide the training we need
locally for our employees,” Mach said. “We’re hoping to continue that
relationship, so the Board met to discuss how to approach the college.
We’ve asked them to come to us with a wish list of things they need to
ensure the continued health of the training program. We asked them to
respond by March 25.” ❏
AMBA 2009 Chapter of the Year Award
Presented to Southwest Michigan Chapter
The AMBA awarded its
2009 AMBA Chapter of
the Year to the Southwest
Accepting the award at the
Annual AMBA Convention
(Feb. 28-March 5) in San
Juan, Puerto Rico, was Bill
Mach, who has served as
President of the Southwest
Michigan Chapter for more
than 10 years.
The Southwest Michigan Chapter was recognized for its active
participation in the industry, including its support of the AMBA
National Conventions and Conferences. The Chapter has a strong
apprenticeship program, and works closely with local high school
career counselors and machine tool instructors to promote mold making
as a rewarding career. When the Chapter couldn’t ﬁnd an appropriate
textbook for the program that described what is involved with the
mold making process, the Chapter created its own textbook, titled
“Introduction to Moldmaking” which is still in use.
The chapter also sponsored charter buses to the International
Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago, held in September, to give
students exposure to the technology, equipment and career opportunities
that require a highly skilled workforce. By donating both money and
equipment to improve their programs, the Southwest Michigan Chapter
offers students the opportunity to gain experience at early on. “At the
last two IMTS shows, we had no problem ﬁlling the busses,” said Mach.
“We ended up with several bus loads of students, so we as a chapter
picked up the cost of the busses.”
At the college level, the Southwest Michigan Chapter is involved with
the apprenticeship program offered at the Lake Michigan College M-
Tech Center. Members work with the machine tool instructors (some of
who are employed by local AMBA member companies) to review and
suggest curriculum relevant to the mold making industry.
The chapter regularly holds chapter meetings, inviting speakers who
can keep the chapter members informed of trends and new technologies.
Members of the chapter have formed a “workload sharing” program,
in which members provide information at the chapter meetings on
equipment time availability in order to utilize specialized equipment
and keep the machines busy without each shop purchasing duplicate
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Why I Joined the AMBA:
“I joined because AMBA is the largest and best lobby group
ﬁghting for us!”
Doug Northup, CEO, A&O Mold and Eng., Vicksburg, MI
New AMBA Board Members Announced
Four directors have been elected to a three-year term.
Robert Earnhardt, Superior Tooling
Robbie started his career in this industry at
14 years old with a neighbor’s tool and die
company. After high school he was off to
college, but while in college realized that
what he really enjoyed most was working
in the shop and someday hoped to have his
own shop. After serving his apprenticeship
he worked with Black and Decker in their
R&D Center, getting experience in the
injection mold building industry. After ﬁve
years with the company, Black and Decker
moved out of state, and Robbie decided
that it was time to expand his backyard business and try it on his own.
After 23 years he is proud to say that he made the right decision. Like
many small businesses, it has not been a very easy road but one that he
is very proud of. Robbie says, “Manufacturing is in my blood.” He has
a VERY strong passion for our industry and manufacturing in America.
He feels that in order for our country to be strong we must be able to
manufacture. In the very tough times that we are facing, he sees one
answer: bring manufacturing back to our country and give our people
their jobs back. Without jobs and manufacturing we will never regain
our strength. Robbie will do all he can to help others understand how
important manufacturing is for our country, and asks, “Why do you
think other countries want our manufacturing industry so badly?”
Todd Finley, Commercial Tool & Die
West Michigan Chapter
Todd began his career as a moldmaker
apprentice in 1985. He has been a
Moldmaker, Project Manager, Design
Manager, Chief Engineer, Plant Manager,
and is currently Vice President of
CTD. His responsibilities include sales
($22M) and operations for the 2008
MMT Leadtime Leader award winner.
Todd is passionate about excellence
in manufacturing and continuous
improvement in a lean environment. Todd
believes that U.S. moldmakers can be
globally competitive on a level playing ﬁeld.
Dan Glass, Strohwig Industries
Dan is the Sales and Marketing Manager
for Strohwig Industries, a family business
where he has worked since the age of
twelve. Strohwig Industries has been a
builder of high quality molds and dies
for almost 30 years in Richﬁeld, WI.
Dan currently serves as a board member
for the WPMC (Wisconsin Precision
Metalworking Council), Wisconsin
BotsIQ, AMBA National Board, and
president of the Wisconsin AMBA
Chapter. He is a member of the AMBA,
NTMA, SPE, TDMAW, WPMC, Wisconsin BotsIQ and NADCA. He
has been the Wisconsin chapter president for over 15 years and has
helped set up two fall conferences held in Wisconsin. Dan has been an
AMBA national board member for three years and has attended nearly
every AMBA convention and conference for the last 25 years.
Shawn McGrew, Prodigy Mold
Shawn McGrew started working in the
mold building industry in 1984 as an
apprentice and worked his way through
the ranks working in a few different shops.
In 1996, he partnered up with a co-worker
and founded Prodigy Mold & Tool, Inc.
located in Southern Indiana. He has been
a member of the AMBA since 2001, and a
member of the National Board of Directors
for the past three years. He also recognizes
the importance of manufacturing to the
U.S. and is passionate about continuing to
develop new techniques and strategies to keep business in the U.S. and
at the same time convincing customers of that importance. ❏
Board Elects Ofﬁcers
Following the announcement of the new national board of directors
during the 2009 convention, the ofﬁcers for the 2009/2010 term were
announced. They are:
President – Steve Rotman
Ameritech Die & Mold
Vice-President – Mike Armbrust
Mako Mold Corporation
Secretary – Shawn McGrew
Prodigy Mold & Tool
Treasurer – Kent Hanson
H.S. Die & Engineering
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AMBA 2009 Annual Convention Wrap
Another successful, informative and fun-ﬁlled AMBA Annual
Convention drew to a close and it proved to be one of the best yet.
We say that every year, and every year the next year proves us wrong
– there are always great things yet to come. The meeting, held in
San Juan, Puerto Rico, attracted 100+ attendees including AMBA
moldmaking members and Partners.
In her report on the State of the AMBA, Executive Director Melissa
Millhuff reported a positive movement in membership, with a net
increase in 2008, for the ﬁrst time in eight years. “The Partner
Program has been a big success during the past year, and we’re
proud to have the support of all these suppliers who help us keep
U.S. mold manufacturing at the cutting edge of technology and
the industry strong,” she said. “AMBA is becoming stronger as we
look for additional ways to support our members and promote U.S.
Millhuff noted that the AMBA is working closely with other industry
trade associations on political advocacy efforts to ensure that the
mold manufacturing industry is being seen and heard by those in
In his opening remarks, Steve Rotman, President of the AMBA,
encouraged the members in attendance at the convention to
participate in the organization’s efforts to get the attention of
Congress and let our voices be heard. “Congress works for us, and
we have the power of the vote,” he said. “We’ll have a score card to
keep track of who votes to strengthen manufacturing in the U.S. and
who doesn’t, and we can make a difference. Now is the time because
people are ﬁnally listening.”
Rotman said that when he purchased his company, Ameritech, in
2001, he “thought he’d bought a dog and I’d be out of business”
given the way things were that year. “With all the China talk, it felt
like we were up against the world, but then I found out that our
real enemies are in Washington, D.C.,” he said. “That’s why we’re
working hard on our political advocacy. The level of enthusiasm at
the Fall Conference was great!”
Commenting on the Washington Fly-In, held the week prior to the
AMBA Annual Convention, Rotman noted, “At the Fly-In, we didn’t
know what to expect, but we discovered that Congress is concerned
about our issues, and how they can support us. They want to come
and visit our shops and see what we do.”
Rotman told attendees at the convention that the AMBA is here to
help them set up Town Hall meetings and get political action going
among the chapters. “Congress works for us, and we have the power
of the vote,” Rotman stated. “We’ll have an anecdote for their failure
to support us. We’ll keep a score card and we can make a difference.
Now is the time people are listening.”
Mike Walter, a director on the AMBA board, was invited to comment on
the Fly-In and noted that he was able to meet with ten Congress people
in two days. “This gave me some hope about our country,” he said. “If
we keep at this and get our representatives and senators committed to
support manufacturing, we can get this country back on track.”
Keynote Speaker Garrison Wynn:
Making the Most of Difﬁcult Situations:
Changing Markets, Changing Times
Garrison Wynn of Wynn Solutions is
co-author of “Speaking of Success” with
Steven Covey and Ken Blanchard, and a
former professional stand-up comedian.
He is also a former Fortune 500 corporate
department head who has developed and
marketed products that are still being sold
around the world. His company focuses
on research, not theory, and his new book,
“What the Top 1% Do Differently and
Why They Won’t Tell You,” will be in
bookstores in October.
Wynn’s humor and business acumen gave attendees a chance to laugh
and learn. “If you criticize others’ ideas in tough times, they’ll almost
never work for you,” he said. “Everybody knows something you don’t,
especially when times are tough. You may have all the knowledge in
your industry but you lose your wisdom. The problem is that people are
often right, but we judge they’re wrong. We all like to believe that we’re
not judgmental, but we all live in judgment.”
In the survey that Wynn did for his book, he found that what the top 1%
of companies deemed important to success, the bottom 99% deemed it
When a company leader requests information, three things happen: 1)
you might agree with the person; 2) you might think they’re nuts; 3)
they might change their story to match yours. It really involves trust.
Compassion and competence are two keys to being a successful
business leader. “Your employees must believe you care,” he said.
“They must believe you can do what you say you can do.”
They must come away feeling that they’ve been “heard,” Wynn
explained. “If they feel listened to they trust right off. Making people
feel heard is the key to trust. Unfortunately, humans don’t listen very
well. Listening is not hereditary. If no one ever listened to you as a
child, you won’t listen to others. We can’t listen to people because they
“Leaders often rob people of their uniqueness,” Wynn noted. “You grow
the size of the problems by telling the employee they don’t exist by not
There are three things a leader can do, whether it’s with customers,
suppliers or employees:
1) Agree there’s a problem, and listen. They’re more likely to work
with you if you agree with them ﬁrst.
2) When someone feels listened to and trusted there’s a chemical
reaction. It’s the “pure power of making people feel heard.”
3) How well you trust the people you don’t like; who are difﬁcult.
You lose your advantage to lead if you don’t trust even those
you don’t like.
“We have to make the leap that most of my problems are of my own
making,” Wynn said. “Just because I founded the company doesn’t
mean I’m the best person to take it to the next level.”
People all have the same agenda: Love, Money, and Prestige. Love of
people must be genuine. If you’re not sincere you’re seen as cold. If
you’re overly sincere, you seem fake. Real “characters” are genuine and
they can get away with things regular people can’t. Are you being real?
Money -- Do you have multiple solutions for a single problem? The
minute you say there’s only one way to do something, you’re selling
Prestige - Can you make people look smart in front of those they want
to look smart in front of?
Change: People don’t like change and reject change. “No one wants
to be a Sr. Beginner,” said Wynn. The top 1% show how the old way
worked and how it is similar to the new way, and then talks about the
beneﬁts of the new ways. It eases people into change.
Value: In times of change you must 1) clearly explain your value in
20 seconds. 2) You must get people to think by asking them good
questions. People are afraid to ask questions because they’re afraid
they’ll look stupid. It takes effort to ask good questions.
Clarity: Does it make sense? Is it clear? It doesn’t matter how smart
you are if nobody knows what you’re talking about. Clarity is more
important than brilliance. Clarity is key!
Communication: If no one gets it, it’s not communication. We lack
tolerance for those who don’t get it.
The top 1% of successful companies know how to overcome buyer’s
objections in tough times.
1) Give me a clear explanation of why you won’t buy.
2) It’s always better to spend money in tough times – get better deals,
3) Manage customer expectations and emotions - customer expectations
vs. customer satisfaction.
The top 1% of successful companies makes good ﬁrst impressions.
“Never order lobster in front of a customer,” advised Wynn.
• “First impressions are the ﬁlter through which they do everything
else. In tough times, that’s magniﬁed.”
• “Spend time with people who can get you where you want to go.”
• “Some things that worked for your father may not work for you.”
• “People can stop you from being successful – old customers,
employees, etc.,” said Wynn. “The top 1% of successful companies
• “If you can’t manage the future, you don’t have a future.”
• The secret of success: “Do little of what you do badly and more of
what you do well.”
• “If you’re a bad example, you’re not a leader because you can’t
lead by example.”
• “Do not let the media dictate your future, or what your life looks
like or what your business looks like.”
• “Change is not the issue; resistance to change is the issue.”
• “Never forget your value,” Wynn concluded. “Companies are not
developed with vision but with leadership.”
Sara Maras: Enterprise Resource
Planning - How It Can Help Improve
the Bottom Line
Manufacturing shop management
systems have evolved over the past ﬁve
decades from the “inventory control
systems” of “LIFO FIFO” (Last In-
First Out or First In-First Out), to the
“Material Requirements Planning”
(MRP) of the 1970s. MRP dealt with
batch sizes, inventory and forecasting,
among other elements.
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In the 1980’s, there was MRP II, which brought sales, ﬁnancials, Just-
In-Time and production planning into the mix.
When the 1990’s came along, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
came on the scene, and there were often questions as to exactly what
“Enterprise Resource” meant. Of course the enterprise is the business
and the resources are all of those things that make the business go. ERP
was about “implementing and integrating non-manufacturing functions
in to the business,” said Maras. General ERP included things like
production planning which extended to back to purchasing and forward
to shipping; bookkeeping and accounting activities and resources
By 2000, we began seeing Extended ERP. That moved shop
management from the production ﬂoor and provided a way to integrate
all of the activities in the shop that went from the front ofﬁce to the
factory ﬂoor and on out the back door.
Maras said that extended ERP does three things:
1) It put input data in one location
2) It allowed sharing common data, processes and practices across
the entire organization can be on the same page.
3) It incorporates efﬁciency and reduces redundant activities, such as
performing data entry tasks again and again as the project moves
through the shop.
CAD software can automatically create a Bill of Materials in ERP. ERP
provides connectivity to one central place for information, and brings
different tooling systems together.
One of the newer elements of ERP is Customer Relationship
Management (CRM) and there are several of these programs such as
Goldmine or ACT! which allows sales people and project engineers to
review phone logs, track RFQs, make follow-up contacts, etc.
ERP also provides Workﬂow Management, an automated way of
pushing the pieces of the business through the entire ERP system.
How will changes in materials price, materials delivery, etc. impact
scheduling? ERP also puts all data in one place, to communicate with
the system, provide a workﬂow link in real time to shop ﬂoor data,
said Maras. Shops can create a virtual communication link in which
customers can look up their own data to, for example, see where along
the process the mold build is.
Maras said that there are several reasons to automate the shop. “Many
companies are pressured to do more with less, and some 44% responded
afﬁrmatively to this in a survey. It allows you to respond to pricing
changes quickly so that the impact on the job can be readily seen. It
helps management set priorities - to pull data from the shop ﬂoor and
see what’s happening.
Also, ERP software such as JobBoss allows for business process
improvement by eliminating duplication in data inputting; it provides
a strategic method of operation - the need to tie multiple departments
together by providing the information each needs to get the job out the
door; and it helps companies who implement ERP have a competitive
“When it comes to implementing an ERP system, people resist change,
so the challenge is to prepare for the future,” Maras said. “A good ERP
system will provide a way to measure the key factors for success vs. the
key factors for failure.”
Best Practices Panel
The panel was moderated by Roger Klouda (MSI Mold Builders), and
participants included Keith Fox (Ameritech Die & Mold), Tim Holland
(Metro Mold & Design), and Todd Finley (Commercial Tool and Die).
Roger Klouda implemented Lean Manufacturing principles at MSI
Mold Builders several years ago, and has found that has made his
company more competitive. “Implementation [of lean] is a lot of work,
but the paybacks are extremely valuable,” he told attendees. “We’ve
ﬁred customers because we couldn’t make money on their work, as our
system showed us, and we were ‘selling through’ a lot of stuff.”
Roger said that lean is an intangible, but MSI has standardized
its processes a lot, and reduced inventory. He compared his three
shops – the headquarters facility in Iowa, the shop in Arkansas, and
the newest facility in South Carolina. He found that each shop had
strengths and weaknesses. “In one area a shop excelled and in another
they did terrible,” he said, adding that a lot of the problem was under-
utilization of equipment. “We have so much technology that we don’t
use efﬁciently,” he said generally of the moldmaking industry. “We get
as much as we need to do the job and no more. We need to share our
equipment and the technology we have with each other.”
Tim Holland told the attendees that one of his company’s best practices
is coming to the annual AMBA conventions. He pointed out some of
his favorite convention speakers and topics and ﬁrst on his list was
Steve Lefever, a business CPA and comedian who for ﬁve consecutive
years spent an entire morning at the AMBA Conventions teaching mold
company owners and managers how to understand the intricacies of
their business. “How many people wish your equipment would turn
to dust in ﬁve years?” Holland asked. “You’d understand your costs,
ratios, etc. From those presentations, I got an accounting ﬁrm to work
He then pointed out Plante Moran’s Moldmaker Survey presentations
over the past few years. “I became a Jeff Mengel groupie,” said
Holland, “and I do his benchmarking survey every other year because it
From Glenn Starkey, Holland said he’s “learned about networking
and looking at the world differently. From the High-Speed Machining
presentations over the years, Holland was incented to add high-speed
machining in 1997.
From AMBA Convention presentations on ERP, he’s launched an ERP
system, implemented it and got a handle on the company’s true costs,
produces a monthly report card to see how Metro Mold is doing and
“where we need improvement.”
Holland even gets lessons pool side while getting his annual tan! “Some
of the pool side lessons include “how to get your company to run
without you. I did it in two years then got bored because I had nothing
to do,” he quipped.
Another lesson he learned at the AMBA Conventions, “You’ve got to
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have a sales person. I’m not good at that. I’m afraid when confronted
by a customer, so I back down, but the sales guy doesn’t,” Holland
said. “Sales people come at it from a different angle. If you have the
loser customer-of-the-month, no one wants it. So, I don’t talk to the
customers, the sales people do. It has helped us to grow.”
Todd Finley said one of his company’s best practices is to provide
sampling services through CG Plastics, the molding arm of
Commercial. They have six Van Dorn presses and provide these
services for customers. Commercial Tool and Die has two shifts and a
weekend shift that works four 12-hour days but get paid for ﬁve.
“Designing in Unigraphics allows us to prototype, and we have
automatic programming so that every designer is designing exactly
the same way,” Finley said. “Our strength is the CNC department,
and because of that we do a lot of outside contract machining to
provide maximum utilization for our equipment because we needed
to. CNC equipment is a heavy investment so we need to get maximum
Commercial Tool implemented a system that automatically generates
bills of materials and creates purchase orders. “That required a lot of
focus,” he said.
“We use our quality management system and write up corrective
actions, and every employee has the opportunity to log a disruption
-- anything that disrupts their job,” he said. “You have to have a
management team that is open to change to implement new systems and
processes like this.”
Commercial Tool tracks machine utilization on all of its machinery.
“We thought we were running 70-80% uptime until we started tracking
utilization and found out otherwise,” Finley said. “We then created a
Pareto chart that tells us why we’re not running.”
Commercial Tool is also teaching its employees to be problem solvers.
“Guys can identify problems and complain, but we’re training them in
The company also has an apprenticeship program and Commercial
Tool hired a full-time instructor – a former CNC operator who became
a teacher. “We made him productive within two weeks of hiring him,”
Keith Fox said that because 60% of Ameritech’s employees are under
30 years of age, they decided to be an engineering driven company.
“The mold designer is the only one who sees and knows the mold
before its assembled, which makes the engineering process key to
success,” he said. “We can sit with six guys in a meeting for two hours
and save 100 hours of build time.”
Additionally, Fox noted that “The days of building custom components
are over. We use standard components from Progressive and D-M-E,
and as a result Ameritech has come a long way,” he said.
Ameritech implemented a scheduling system that helps the shop ﬂoor
understand what they’re giving to Ameritech and what is needed to meet
deliveries. “We’re constantly looking at how we shave more and more
time off of jobs,” said Fox. “Time is all we sell.”
Also, added Fox, “We send a lot of our molds to Mexico so repairs are
important, we have to do them quickly.”
When it comes to the “Prima Donna” idea of the moldmaker, Fox said
Ameritech has no Prima Donnas. “Prima donnas don’t play well with
others, and we want people who are going to do the right thing with the
right attitude,” he said. “We have no shop foreman, no job linkers. The
job goes through the shop ﬂoor without supervision and hits delivery.
We will design and build the mold to the model. We built the system it
takes to build a mold. This is what it takes to get the job done and we
Terry Schwenk: Building Molds for
Terry Schwenk of Process & Design
Technologies (Kenosha, WI) has been
in the molding and mold manufacturing
business for 35 years. He understands
that mold cooling is critical to optimum
manufacturing, and showed attendees how
Turbulent Flor Cooling vs. Evaporative
Cooling can make a difference in
processing through improvements in
“The science of heat removal is not complicated, but it’s tedious,” he
said. “Heat travels via conduction, convention or radiation from areas of
high heat to areas of low heat. Heat removal equals cooling.”
The key to building a mold for optimum molding is to determine how
much heat you have to dissipate and how many gallons of water will it
take to remove the calories [of heat]. Laminar ﬂow removes one calorie
per gram of water per degree of temperature rise. Once it reaches that
capacity, it can’t cool any further, because the water close to the wall in
laminar ﬂow absorbs all the heat energy.
Turbulent ﬂow exposes each gram of water to the cooling channel, thus
changing the amount of energy and each gallon becomes more efﬁcient.
Large molds require more energy to perform turbulent ﬂow than smaller
ones, Schwenk pointed out.
“Cold water does not ensure high efﬁciency of heat removal, because
of viscosity changes in cold water,” he said. “Warmer water can be
more efﬁcient at heat removal than cold water. It’s strictly a speed issue.
Turbulence is velocity, not disruption.”
Schwenk recommends that water lines be placed in the ﬂoor of a
molding facility for optimum energy savings. “Running the water lines
overhead and down to the press is okay, but pushing that water back to
the ceiling takes a huge amount of pressure,” he explained. “It takes less
energy if the lines are in the ﬂoor because you only have to pump the
water as high as the mold. You really have to look at energy costs, and
what it costs to push energy through the system.”
Another tip Schwenk gave, “If the tool takes a couple of hours to
stabilize after installing it in the press, the water circuits are NOT ﬁne.
With today’s machining and technology we can achieve better water
lines. Conformal cooling reduces the distance water has to travel which
makes it more efﬁcient at heat removal.”
Technology Panel: Hard-Milling Made Easy
The panel consisted of Sean Shafer (Makino), Ron Field (Millstar) and
Rob Keenan (Seco Tool). Shafer said that the hard-milling process can
eliminate benching, shorten lead times, can be a replacement for jig
grinding, reduce cycle times by 50%, replace EDMing and Carbide
Field said that Millstar has a new product, a high-end solid carbide
bit and innovative inserts for 60 Rockwell material that can help
moldmakers reduce cost and manufacturing time. The new innovative
tool coatings, such as XRN (Chrome), TLN (Exalon), and HSN (Bronze
- the highest heat resistance) offer moldmakers some good options when
it comes to hard milling.
With the new high-feed tools (60 HRc) you get longer tool life, and at
68 HRc you get true hard milling capability.
Keenan told the attendees that “You don’t need high RPMs for hard
milling.” High speed machining requires high performance machining
(rigid setup) and high feed machining. “You approach the steel
differently,” he said.
Tool life can be extended in hard milling applications by using small
depths of cut. The tool holder is important, and magnetic holders are
becoming the way to go. Chip evacuation areas are critical to the
success of the hard million operation, Keenan said. “High-feed million
is effective for hard milling.” ❏
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Why I Joined the AMBA:
“We joined AMBA because of the involvement with Congress
on issues such as free trade, and their meetings with the U.S.
International Trade Commission. We wanted to be part of the
more local and national involvement in the issues that affect
Matt Metcalf, VP/Finance, Colonial Machine Co. , Kent, OH
DMS (Windsor, ON)s DMS (Schaumburg, IL) s DMS (Fountain Valley, CA) s DMS (Taunton, MA)
“The secret is out”
Experienced personal service matters…
Your source for quality mold components for over 40 years.
DMS is the AMBA Moldmakers’ “EMS”
DMS has consistently been a market leader in new product development and prides itself on being
ﬁrst with innovations that have beneﬁted moldmaking worldwide, with a commitment to producing
and delivering quality products on time at competitive prices. With more than 2000 customers and
numerous distributors in Europe, Canada, USA, Asia, Africa and Australasia, DMS has a product
range of over 12,000 items, including mold bases, ejector pins, core pins, leader pins, sleeve ejectors,
blade ejectors, bushings, tapered interlocks, sprue bushings, locating rings, unique mechanisms,
date stamps, gating inserts, hot runner systems, heating and cooling, and mold polishing items.
Thank You to Our Convention Sponsors &
Brush Wellman (NYSE:BW),
a subsidiary of Brush Engineer
Materials Inc., is the world’s leading
supplier of high performance
alloys, providing high reliability
copper beryllium and spinodal alloy products with unparalleled global
service. High Strength mold alloys include MoldMAX
, MoldMAX XL
and MoldMAX SC
for full core and cavity, core pins and hot runner
components. The proven leader in developing and growing the use of
high strength – high conductivity copper alloys for molds used in the
plastics industry, Brush Wellman's mold alloys are supported worldwide
through a network of Ph.D. metallurgists and experienced application
Creative Evolution provides high
performance milling machines
and controls for moldmakers
worldwide. Products focus on value and the proven performance and
innovation of the Creative Evolution CNC control, conceived and
developed over the past 15 years at Creative Evolution, located in
Schaumburg, IL. Complete Creative Evolution machines offer the
highest performance, designed from the ground up for the Creative
Evolution CNC. Retroﬁt controls update existing CNC machines to the
latest capabilities and performance. Creative Evolution sponsors and
participates in seminars and workshops, providing ongoing education
about the latest developments in programming, cutters and tooling, and
machine tool technology. See us on the web at http://www.creat.com .
D-M-E Company, an essential
resource to customers worldwide,
offers the industry’s broadest
range of market-leading
products. Through its specialized
manufacturing centers of excellence and strong strategic global
partnerships, D-M-E brings to market the highest quality products at
the lowest cost to customers around the world. Global D-M-E product
platforms provide consistency and reliability to international customers
who are assured that they’re getting the same high-quality products
worldwide. Unmatched D-M-E engineering expertise and industry
knowledge continue to drive innovative technologies, such as products
that support the growing markets for “green” materials and elastomer
Dynamic International has
grown from its native Wisconsin
& Michigan roots to become a
national sales enterprise comprising
a network of distributorships and a
multi-million dollar international corporate entity. We provide state-of-the-
art Die/Mold machine solutions for a broad-base of discriminating North
American Companies. Dynamic International has always been dedicated
to developing and maintaining long term relationships with our customers.
We continually work and monitor our performance in order to provide
customers with superior service. Our achievement completely depends
on the satisfaction with the service and support we give our customers.
We are proud to say that over 80% of our customers are multiple machine
users. Please visit our website at www.dynamicintl.com.
Erowa Technology, Inc. is a full
service supplier of palletization and
automation systems for the North
American market. Our productivity
solutions begin with the unique
design of standard or custom
work holding products for any
combination of machining operations. Once preset, the chucks, pallets and
WEDM tooling allow workpieces to move from operation to operation
without time consuming re-setting. Our products are manufactured
to deliver high accuracy and repeatability. Our extensive know how in
manufacturing will guarantee the best products, on-time delivery and
Exact JobBOSS is the most
widely used quoting, tracking,
and shipping control software. By
delivering visibility and control
over everything going on in the
shop, JobBOSS has become the solution more shops that make a speciﬁc
mold for a speciﬁc customer rely on to improve productivity, proﬁtability
and competitiveness. It gives you the ability to manage data for all of
the jobs in your shops, whether they are simple or complex. And the
ﬂexibility to control jobs at the top level or blow out all components and
see the detail.
Industeel is a subsidiary of
ArcelorMittal, the largest steel
producer in the world today.
Specializing in advanced
technology carbon steels, alloy,
and stainless steels, Industeel produces a line of premium mold and
tool steels: Superplast® SP300, SP350, and SP400. SP300, SP350,
and SP400, offer signiﬁcant production advantages and beneﬁts over
traditional mold and tool steels in the areas of: machinability, thermal
conductivity, welding, graining, and guaranteed hardness throughout
the block. In today’s market, this translates into improved productivity
and competitiveness for toolmakers. Superplast® products are sold and
available through an exclusive global network of distributors.
Injection Molding Magazine
provides how-to information
on mold design, construction,
maintenance, CAD/CAM, mold
analysis, mold materials, metalworking, and other topics critical to tool
designers, tooling engineers, moldmakers, and tooling buyers. IMM is
proud to carry advice from mold expert Bob Hatch in our regular column,
The Troubleshooter. With unique stories of collaboration that show the
way to further improvement, IMM is dedicated to contributing to the
health of the moldmaking industry in the U.S.
Makino is a global provider of
advanced machining technology
and application support, where
new thinking takes shape for the
metalcutting industries. Makino
manufactures a full line of high performance CNC horizontal and
vertical machining centers in 3, 4 or 5 axis, as well as Ram and Wire
EDM machines, for die and mold applications. Makino manufacturing
and service centers are located in the United States, Japan, Germany,
Singapore, Italy, France, Korea, Taiwan, Turkey, China, Mexico, Brazil,
and India, and are supported by a worldwide distributor network. For
more information call 1.800.552.3288, or visit Makino on the web at
MILLSTAR is a global
manufacturer and supplier of high
performance cutting tools with
special focus on manufacturing
in the die and mold, automotive,
aerospace and medical industries. MILLSTAR products are manufactured
in the USA under ISO 9001 and are designed for conventional as well as
high speed and hard milling of die/mold steels, aerospace materials, non-
ferrous metals and carbon graphite. MILLSTAR’s very extensive range of
tools offer the latest in proﬁle and contour milling technology, providing
to the user a competitive edge of shorter machining and through-put lead
time, and the advantages of higher milling accuracy and true, smooth
Since 1972, Mold Base Industries, Inc.
manufactures quality standard and custom mold
bases; rough or ﬁnish ground plates, also available
we have a full line of Self-lube components. Each
base is built to your specs and completed in the
shortest possible lead time. We do not precut
plates enabling our customer to have the size
base that ﬁts their mold. Or do we stock standard
bases allowing our customers to relocate components without extra costs.
Mold bases are ﬁnish-machined so you simply install cavities, cores,
and auxiliary items, making your mold ready for testing. Nothing is too
complicated for MBI! Send your ﬁles to firstname.lastname@example.org.
magazine is the only trade
publication dedicated exclusively
to the engineering, building and
repairing of molds as well as the management and business issues,
challenges and strategies associated with today’s mold manufacturing
facilities through technical articles and application reviews. The magazine
also presents its annual trade show and conference, MoldMaking
Expo; its monthly e-newsletter, MMT Insider and its Web site, www.
Progressive Components present-
ed an array of recently released
products at AMBA’s Annual
Convention, including its new Friction Puller, the BX Inch Series Hot
Sprue Bushing, Needle Bearing Locks, SRT Slide Retainers and Roller
Pullers from the exclusive FrictionFree™ line, the VersaLifter and
expanded offerings from its line of Alignment products, Date Stamps,
Collapsible Cores, UniLifters® and more. Based in Wauconda, Illinois,
Progressive continues to design and develop industry-leading standards
that speed mold building and reduce costs and downtime. Our complete
catalog, including product demos, may be viewed at www.procomps.
com, or email us at email@example.com for a copy.
Seco is a leader in metalworking
technology and offers solutions in
milling, drilling, turning, threading
and tool systems including an
extensive range of 3D Milling products speciﬁcally designed for the Mold
& Die Industry. We are committed to meeting our customers’ needs for
increased productivity, higher quality and improved cost-effectiveness by
providing application speciﬁc tooling and unparalleled technical support.
Seco markets a full range of cutting tools and related products through a
network of more than 400 authorized distributors throughout the United
States, Canada, and Mexico.
Sturdell Industries, Inc. is a world
class Mold Steel supplier that
excels at “Lead Time Solutions”
by providing “Value-Added”
machining services, as well as Finished Machine plates to advance the
progress as well as enhance proﬁtability of the American Mold Builder.
These In-house, “Value-Added” services include: CNC Gundrilling,
Finish Pockets & Leader Pins, 3D contouring, CNC Milling and Boring
Mill services, and Mattison and Blanchard Grinding up to 120”. Sturdell
Industries, Inc. is ISO 9001:2000 certiﬁed and has been in business since
1986. For fast quotes please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Web Site: WWW.STURDELL.COM
System 3R was established in 1967
in Stockholm, Sweden building
tooling for EDM machines used
in the Tool & Die and Mold making industry. Production operations
have expanded throughout Sweden, Switzerland and Japan. System 3R
has Sales ofﬁces in 15 countries and Distributors in all major industrial
countries. As the Mold making business expanded the System 3R product
line grew to include automation systems for EDM and high speed milling
machines. The demands of automation created the need for a software
system to manage theses work-cells. System 3R “WorkShop Manager”
software has become so popular that it has grown into its own business
Since 1967, Vega Tool
Corporation has been actively
selling cutting tools to the
metal cutting industry. With the
introduction of our very own Vega
Taps in 1988, we continue the tradition of selling high performance cutting
taps, forming taps, drills and thread mills. In 2001 we introduced Hitachi
Tool Engineering to the North American market with a product line-card
of indexable tools and solid carbide tools speciﬁcally aimed at the die
mold industry. Innovations in substrates, cutting geometries and coatings
allow our tools to expand the limits of your machine’s potential.
Ultra Polishing, Inc. has been
in business since 1987. We offer
full support for our customers
including traveling and polishing
in doing precision benching and polishing. We are specialists in our
ﬁeld. Our three specialized departments work with you to achieve your
deadlines. We have the capabilities to operate around the clock 24/7. We
offer pickup and delivery of molds up to 30,000 tons. We maintain the
highest level of security while your molds are in our facility. Please visit
our website at www.ultrapolishing.com. Phone: 847-352-5249.
YRC Transportation - AMBA
Members save on your freight
shipments with YRC! Members
receive a 62% discount on
(LTL) shipments. Yellow and
Roadway have integrated networks,
services, and capabilities to become YRC. This gives you increased
coverage, service options, reliability, quality, and speed. YRC provides
members comprehensive regional and national coverage, including the
most extensive inter-Canada service. More customers rely on YRC for
their big shipments than any other provider. Start taking advantage of
your association discount with YRC today by contacting your association
beneﬁts coordinator at 800.647.3061 or email@example.com. ❏
Amer ican Mol d Buil der s Associ
San Juan, P
at ion 2 0 0 9 Annual C onvent ion
Puer t o Rico
AMBA Convention Beach Olympics Event
At the recent AMBA convention in San Juan, Puerto Rico, we held our
ﬁrst Beach Olympics event. The attendees were grouped into seven
teams, and our tabletop exhibitors were paired up as co-captains for the
teams. The beach Olympics teams competed in six very competitive
beach events, including a:
• Sand Castle Building Contest
• Hula Hooping Contest
• Water Balloon Toss
• Fill-the-Bucket Relay
• Frisbee Toss
• Blow-up Dolphin Relay Race
At ﬁrst everyone seemed very reluctant to participate, but the event
turned out to be a fun, silly, enjoyable time for everybody. Teams
got points for each event that they won, and the highest point level
determined the winners.
The ﬁrst place team, and recipients of the Gold medal was Team #7, co-
captained by Todd Schuett, of Creative Evolution, and John Roskos, of
Beach Olympics, ﬁrst place team.
Second place winners, and recipients of the Silver medal was Team #4,
co-captained by Mary Forbes of Mold Base Industries, and Ron Field of
Beach Olympics, second place team.
And the third place winning team, the Bronze medal recipients were
Team #3, co-captained by Rob Esling of Industeel, and Sean Shafer of
Beach Olympics, third place team. ❏
Point of View – AMBA Convention
“My wife and I had a wonderful time in San Juan, PR. This was the
ﬁrst year that I have attended an AMBA annual meeting and it will not
be the last. It was a great experience and I plan on going every year
from now on. The speakers were all great; I got something useful from
everyone I heard. The discussion panels were also helpful in learning
what other companies are doing to solve common problems in the
industry. I also met a lot of wonderful people. I can’t wait for Orlando
next year. See you there!”
Jonathan Filer, Filer Micro Welding, Forest City, NC ❏
AMBA Convention Locations
AMBA has been serving the mold building industry since 1973, and
hosting annual conventions every year for it’s members since 1980.
The upcoming 2010 convention in Orlando, FL will mark the 30
anniversary of AMBA conventions! See all the places where the AMBA
has met in the 30-years of hosting this popular annual event. ❏
1980 Lincolnshire, IL 1/25/1980
1981 Las Vegas, NV 2/25 - 3/1/81
1982 San Diego, CA 3/17 - 3/21/82
1983 Cancun, Mexico 2/22 - 2/27/83
1984 Lake Tahoe, CA/NV 2/29 - 3/4/84
1985 Orlando, FL 2/27 - 3/3/85
1986 Scottsdale, AZ 3/5 - 3/9/86 3/5
1987 Waikiki, Oahu 3/3 - 3/8/87
1988 Lake Tahoe, CA/NV 3/9 - 3/13/88
1989 Bal Harbour, FL 3/8 - 3/12/89
1990 San Antonio, TX 3/7 - 3/11/90
1991 New Orleans, LA 3/13 - 3/17/91
1992 Honolulu, HI 3/10 - 3/15/92
1993 Orlando, FL 3/10 - 3/14/93
1994 Scottsdale, AZ 3/8 - 3/13/94
1995 Nassau, Bahamas 2/26 - 3/3/95
1996 San Diego, CA 3/5 - 3/10/96
1997 Cancun, Mexico 2/23 - 2/28/97
1998 Maui, HI 2/21 - 2/27/98
1999 Clearwater, FL 3/2 - 3/7/99
2000 Paradise Island, Bahamas 3/5 - 3/10/00
2001 Scottsdale, AZ 2/27 - 3/4/01
2002 San Juan, Puerto Rico 3/3 - 3/8/02
2003 Amelia Island, FL 3/18 - 3/23/03
2004 Cabo San Lucas, Mexico 2/29 - 3/5/04
2005 Key West, FL 3/2 - 3/6/05
2006 Maui, HI 3/4 - 3/9/06
2007 St. Thomas, VI 3/3 - 3/8/07
2008 Puerto Vallarta, Mexico 3/1 - 3/6/08
2009 San Juan, Puerto Rico 2/28 - 3/5/09
2010 Orlando, FL 3/21 - 3/25/10
10260 Indiana Court., Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730 U Tel: 909.941.0600 U 800.432.6653 U Fax: 909.941.0190
U Website: www.albaent.com
Quick Knockout Couplers
5 Sizes Up to 5000 Ton Machines
Hot Runner Systems
Pin Point, Valve Gate, Multi Gate,
Hot Edge Gate,
Slide Elements, Latch Systems, Etc.
AMBA News AMBA News
AMBA Exhibits at Plastec West 2009
The AMBA national ofﬁce exhibited
at this year’s PLASTEC West show
in Anaheim, CA on February 10-12.
Our goal while exhibiting at the show
was to promote AMBA members
and U.S. mold manufacturing, and
to talk to attendees about AMBA
membership and partnership.
Show trafﬁc was very good, and a lead list of potential mold buyers was
distributed to all AMBA members after the show.
A special THANK YOU is deserved by the members listed below who
volunteered their time to help staff the AMBA and assist with answering
technical questions from show attendees.
• Dave LaGrow, Maximum Mold
• Tony May, Pyramid Mold & Tool
• Eric Kinter, Target Precision
• Clare Goldsberry, Pro Write Communication
• John Martin, Mo-Tech
• Dave Rawlings, Mo-Tech
• Robert Vaughan, Dauntless Molds
AMBA To Meet In Washington, D.C.
Fall Conference Will Target Congressional Leaders
In its ongoing efforts to bring awareness to Congressional leaders in
Washington, D.C., the AMBA announced that it will be holding its
annual Fall Conference for 2009 in the nation’s capital for a second
“This is a continuation of the efforts the AMBA began in 2008 with the
Fall Conference that was held in Washington, D.C. and the Fly-In in
which the AMBA participated the last week of February this year that
was so successful,” said Melissa Millhuff, Executive Director of the
The AMBA has been working with other manufacturing and industry
trade groups to bring to the attention of Congresspeople the plight of
U.S. manufacturing generally and the American mold manufacturing
The 2009 Fall Conference will be held from Sunday, September 13
through Tuesday, September 15, at the Hyatt Regency Washington on
Capital Hill. The event will begin with an opening night cocktail party
on Sunday, September 13. On Monday, September 14, from 8 am until
12 noon, there will be a strategy brieﬁng. The rest of the day September
14, and all day September 15, attendees will meet with their respective
Congress people in the House and Senate.
This year’s Fall Conference will be one year before the 2010 election
season when many of the Congressional delegates will be up for re-
MADE I N USA
election. Millhuff commented, “This is grass roots politics at its best.
We’ll see who is with us on the issues that matter. We’ll see how many
votes it will take to get them out of ofﬁce if they don’t vote in a way
that promotes U.S. manufacturing.”
OEM E-Newsletter & Mold Buyers Corner Update
AMBA is happy to announce that the Mold Buyers Corner on the
AMBA website is getting lots of attention. There are one to two
requests on the Mold Buyers Corner each day to sign up for the new
OEM E-Newsletter. These requests are coming from very large OEM’s
throughout the U.S., including many Fortune 500 companies. We’re
also getting several questions each month from mold users to AMBA
The new OEM E-Newsletter, sent on the third Wednesday of each
month to hundreds of OEMs, is also being received quite well. There is
still some ad space available to mold companies that want to promote
their company/capabilities to this audience of OEM mold buyers. The
next few months are just about full and expected to sell out, so call Sue
Daniels at the AMBA ofﬁce (847-222-9402) to reserve ad space.
AMBA to Exhibit at NPE / MME 2009
Visit us at NPE booth #104020 in the North American Moldmakers
Pavilion at McCormick Place, Chicago, IL on June 22-26, 2009.
New YRC Shipping Discounts for
American Mold Builders Association and
YRC are pleased to announce a new 70%
discount for all AMBA Members effective
April 1, 2009! This discount applies
towards qualifying less-than-truckload shipments through the YRC
program. We are also announcing that we have added new discounts on
specialized solutions from YRC. Members will now receive:
• National and Regional LTL Shipments 70%
• YRC Time Advantage™ delivers highly reliable expedited
capabilities throughout North America, including to and
from Canada at a competitive price
• YRC Time Critical™ delivers highly reliable expedited
and time-deﬁnite capabilities anywhere throughout North
America, including to and from Canada
• Sealed Divider™ is ideal for products that are difﬁcult or
expensive to package for shipping, are of high value, or
need veriﬁable security throughout transit
• Waived fee for Residential Delivery $81.00+
• Waived charge for Tradeshow Pickup and Delivery $37.00
• Waived charge for Shipment Notiﬁcation $36.00
• Waived charge for Single Shipments $31.50
• Call to learn about even more additional savings!
AMBA would like to thank you for your membership and continued
support of our YRC partner program. If you are currently enrolled in the
AMBA | YRC partner program, your account will automatically update
to the new discount on April 1, 2009. To enroll in the program, simply
contact your association beneﬁts coordinator by phone, e-mail, or online.
1.800.647.3061 | Associations@yrcw.com | www.enrollhere.net. ❏
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Order Gold Plates for all Your
U. S. Built Molds!
We now offer two sizes of “Made in USA”
plates to put on all your U. S. built molds!
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3” X 4”
The new updated AMBA logo and the words
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Order your mold plates today, and highlight
your “Made in the USA” status!
Email Kim Cobb at kcobb@amba. org or call the
AMBA ofﬁce to order your gold plates today!
Dates To Remember
Keeping your Moldmaking Competitive in a Global Marketplace
June 23, 2009, Chi cago , IL, Mol dMaki ng Expo
Thi s i nteracti ve four- hour workshop focuses on l ate- breaki ng technol ogy
and techni ques for opti mal 3, 4 and 5- axi s mi l l i ng producti vi ty for mol ds
and di es. Hi ghl y attended for the past three years, thi s sessi on i s constantl y
updated to keep i ts content up to date. Industry experts i n programmi ng,
tool i ng, and CNC mi l l i ng technol ogy i nteracti vel y di scuss and demonstrate
the tool s and methods of usi ng them to maxi mi ze your equi pment’s and your
peopl e’s producti vi ty. Actual appl i cati on exampl es provi de the basi s for much
of the materi al s, i ncl udi ng extensi ve vi deo demonstrati ons. Q & A ti me wi l l
fol l ow the presentati on. AMBA - sponsored semi nar wi th:
Steve McBri de, OSG Tap & Di e;
Chri s Renaud, CAM- TOOL (Graphi c Products North Ameri ca);
Todd Schuett, Creati ve Evol uti on
More i nformati on wi l l be avai l abl e soon.
AMBA Fall Conference
September 13- 15, 2009, Washi ngton D.C.
Save these dates! In i ts ongoi ng efforts to bri ng awareness to Congressi onal
l eaders i n Washi ngton, D.C., the AMBA announced that i t wi l l be hol di ng
i ts annual Fal l Conference for 2009 i n the Nati on’s capi tal for a second
consecuti ve year. The 2009 Fal l Conference wi l l be hel d from Sunday, Sept.
13 through Tuesday, Sept. 15, at the Hyatt Regency Washi ngton on Capi tal
Hi l l . The event wi l l begi n wi th an openi ng ni ght cocktai l party on Sunday,
Sept. 13. On Monday, Sept. 14, from 8 am unti l 12 noon, there wi l l be a
strategy bri eﬁng. The rest of the day Sept. 14, and al l day Sept.15, attendees
wi l l meet wi th thei r respecti ve Congress peopl e i n the House and Senate.
Dates To Remember
AMBA Annual Convention
March 21- 25, 2010, Orl ando, FL
More i nformati on wi l l be avai l abl e soon, so pl ease save the dates! Pl ease j oi n
us i n Orl ando i n 2010!
SME 2009 Eastec
May 19 - 21, 2009 - W. Spri ngﬁel d, MA
For nearl y three decades, EASTEC has been an East Coast manufacturi ng
tradi ti on. Each year, nearl y 14,000 manufacturers, pl ant managers and
shop owners from throughout the regi on’s di verse i ndustri es vi si t EASTEC
to eval uate advanced technol ogi es, producti on methods and management
concepts. From the l atest mul ti taski ng machi ne tool s to l ean strategi es,
EASTEC keeps East Coast manufacturi ng competi ti ve. http:/ / www.sme.org/
cgi - bi n/ get- event.pl ?- - 001793- 000007- home- - SME-
Design & Manufacturing New England
May 20 - 21, 2009 - Boston, MA
Desi gn & Manufacturi ng New Engl and showcases the l atest advances i n
computer- ai ded desi gn and manufacturi ng, rapi d prototypi ng, engi neeri ng,
components, producti on and automati on machi nery, l asers, motors
and dri ves, packagi ng, materi al s handl i ng, el ectroni cs, qual i ty systems,
networki ng, enterpri se IT, and a ful l range of contract servi ce provi ders. http:/ /
www.devi cel i nk.com/ expo/ oemne08/
Chapter Spotlight - Chicago Chapter
By: Laura Anderson, Chicago Chapter Administrator
Chicago is where it all began 36 years ago,
and the Chicago chapter remains one of the
largest chapters in the AMBA organization,
with over 40 member shops. The Chicago
chapter has historically served as a force in
the mold making industry to provide our
members with networking opportunities
with other member shops, suppliers and
vendors. We also advocate on behalf of
our industry with local, state and federal
legislators to inﬂuence policy that affects
In 2001, the Chicago chapter founded
“Save American Manufacturing.” This
group represented not only local AMBA member shops, but regional
U.S.-based manufacturing companies in an effort to educate both
employees and government representatives on the importance of
manufacturing in the U.S. and the value our industry brings to
this country. Today, these activities have been folded back into the
umbrella of our chapter activities. Our members continue to provide a
strong voice for the industry through participation in advocacy events
including the recent Washington, D.C. ﬂy-in as well as the news
conference from the Capitol steps that was held in conjunction with
the AMBA Fall Conference.
In addition to the training and industry meetings sponsored by our
national ofﬁce, the Chicago chapter plans quarterly meetings that
Mike Armbrust, Chicago
provide our members the opportunity to network, provide valuable
insight into issues facing our industry and simply give our members
a chance to share business tips and new technology to help our
members become the best the industry has to offer. Our chapter
meetings cover topics such as new Lien Laws passed in our state,
interactive best practice meetings, human resources expertise and
updates from our national headquarters.
Mike Armbrust, vice president of Mako Mold, is the Chicago
Chapter President, said the Chicago chapter has had a long history
of providing its members with successful networking opportunities
as well as technical programs. We have a membership that goes
beyond peer to peer “shop talk” and we’re proud of the many
personal relationships the Chicago chapter has fostered. We look
forward to continuing to serve our members in striving for continuous
improvement and establishing our value in a global economy. ❏
The chapter held a general meeting on March 10. Their guest speaker
for the evening was Jonathan Winters of PCS Company, who spoke on
Mold coating and plating issues. Chapter members also discussed the
AMBA scholarship opportunity, the upcoming NPE/MME trade show
in Chicago, and the recent Anaheim Plastics show.
The chapter met on March 11 after the Plastec South trade show. It was
an informal event to meet with other moldmaker chapter members, and
network with their peers.
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Dates To Remember
June 8 - 10, 2009 - New York, NY
The l argest advances i n pri mary processi ng machi nery, computer- ai ded
desi gn and manufacturi ng, producti on machi nery, contract servi ces,
materi al s, mol ds and mol d components, automati on technol ogy, materi al s
handl i ng/ l ogi sti cs, enterpri se IT...and much more. http:/ / www.devi cel i nk.
com/ expo/ pl astecshows/
NPE 2009/ MME 2009
June 22 - 26, 2009 – McCormi ck Pl ace, Chi cago, IL
No matter what ki nd of products you manufacture, at NPE2009, we speak
one l anguage— pl asti cs. Joi n the gl obal conversati on by exhi bi ti ng at thi s
premi er i ndustry event. From our i nternati onal scope to our proﬁci ency i n
reachi ng across al l suppl y channel s and down al l verti cal markets, NPE2009
i s desi gned to accel erate sal es, provi de you wi th unparal l el ed cl i ent access
and demonstrate i nnovati ve new technol ogi es. www.npe.org http:/ / www.
mol dmaki ngexpo.com/
Plastec / Plastics USA
September 21 - 24 - Rosemont, IL
Pl ease vi si t the event websi te for more i nformati on. http:/ / www.devi cel i nk.
com/ expo/ pl astecshows/
The chapter held a general membership meeting on February 17. Their
invited speaker for the meeting was Karla Dobbeck of Human Resource
Techniques. Her presentation was titled Human Resources 101
– Managing Employees Issues. She spoke on general HR issues, and
answered speciﬁc questions.
The chapter held a meeting on January 15, with speaker Jerry Mraz
from Smaltec International. He spoke about a revolutionary micro-EDM
The members of the Minnesota chapter met and held a general meeting
on March 19. Their guest speaker was Gretchen Kelly of HLB Tautges
Redpath, LTD. She covered Success Strategies for 2009.
The group held a meeting on May 7 to form the new Pennsylvania
chapter of the AMBA! Chapter board members were chosen, and goals
for the chapter were set. More details on this new chapter will be
SW Michigan Chapter
The chapter was the recipient of the ﬁrst annual AMBA Chapter of the
year award. The chapter was awarded $5,000 in scholarship money
to use towards the student or education program of their choice. Read
more under “AMBA 2009 Chapter of the Year Award” in this issue of
The American Mold Builder.
The chapter board of directors met on March 25, and on April 23.
West Michigan Chapter
Gordon Brown of Model Die & Mold, Inc. has stepped down from his
many years of service as the West Michigan Chapter treasurer. Cindy
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WHERE NEW THINKING TAKES SHAPE.
Humphreys of CS Tool Engineering will take his place as the new
The chapter held a breakfast meeting on February 12. Thirty-two
people were in attendance, representing 6 member companies and 6
guest companies. The guest speaker was Bill Brashers from Bartell &
Bartell. He conducted a DISC assessment and deﬁned each person’s
temperament, and how to connect with other temperaments.
The chapter held another meeting on May 12, with a guest speaker Ryan
Pohl of Expert Technical Training, LLC.
An Announcement from the West Michigan
Chapter President Kent Hanson
The local Boy Scout Gerald R. Ford Council contacted me in person
about sponsoring an event where they honor peer selected volunteers.
They were ﬁnding it quite difﬁcult to get a sponsor and had found my
name in an Eagle Scout directory. These Silver Recognition Awards are
made for those who provide exceptional service to our youth. These
award winners are all registered Scouters within the jurisdiction of our
AMBA West Michigan Area.
The council serves over 2400 young people in 12 counties. These
Scouts have collected 46,000 food items for over 50 local food banks.
Just 160 Eagle Scouts gave 16,350 hours of community service, an
additional 30,000 hours were provided by other Scouting units. Many
leaders in our communities are Scouts. Along with 60% of the 312 U.S.
astronauts, over 30% of West Point, and Air Force Academy cadets
were Scouts. Scouting has a positive impact on our community
Every year the Gerald R. Ford council asked for ONE corporate
sponsor to pledge to be the Event underwriter for the Silver Awards by
providing a check for $2500, and the West Michigan chapter has chosen
to be this year’s sponsor.
Knowing these trying economic times, I just could not see how a
single shop would be able to do this. With numerous shops struggling
this could be another way that our AMBA Chapter could help our
community. Members may not have been involved in Scouting and other
youth programs due to the intensity and demands of our careers, but not
because of a lack of caring. Chapter members responded immediately in
favor of the sponsorship to support our community and those who have
invested a great deal of their lives in Scouting. We have a great deal of
respect and admiration for those who help our youth and are proud to
share a part in recognizing their accomplishments.
The chapter is planning a joint meeting with the NTMA. Member
company Strohwig Industries will host a facility tour, roundtable
and buffet. State senators, representatives, assembly persons, school
representatives, and county ofﬁcials will be invited to attend to show
them the importance manufacturing has to our economy. To show them
how manufacturing works, the importance of the supply chain, why it
works, and what they are doing to stiﬂe manufacturing and the hope for
lasting economic recovery in America . To explain that no amount of
Stimulus Plans will work without a healthy manufacturing base. ❏
Show Your Patriotism and Support U. S. Manufacturing.
Buy “Made in U. S. A. ” Gold Plates for your Molds – Display
proudly on your molds, available in two sizes: 1-1/2” x 2” size
for $1 each and 3” x 4” size for $2 each plus s/h.
The American Mold Builders Association
wants to welcome the following new
Proper Mold & Engineering Inc. (Warren, Michigan) is part of the
Proper Group International, and operates in a 105,000 sf facility with
187 employees in Warren, Michigan, Proper Group’s headquarters
location. Proper was a member of the AMBA for a number of years, and
owner Geoff O’Brien rejoined AMBA after an absence of a few years.
Proper Mold & Engineering was founded in 1971, and today offers
moldmaking services in Warren and in Anderson, SC, where it also
provides molding capabilities.
Vector Tool & Engineering (Grandview, Missouri) is a subsidiary of
Peterson Manufacturing and specializes in injection molds for lighting,
automotive, consumer, medical and OEM applications. The company
was founded in 1995 and operates in a 30,000 sf facility with 34
employees. Bruce Eagleburger is Operations Manager.
A-1 Tool (Melrose Park, IL) President Geoff Luther said he joined
the AMBA for the valuable networking opportunities. A-1 Tool was
founded in 1946 and today operates two locations, the Melrose Park
facility with 55,000 sf, and another plant in Milwaukee, WI. A-1
employs 70 people and specializes in a variety of plastic injection molds
in a range of sizes. A-1 also performs custom machining operations and
provides 5-axis machining.
Radius Precision Mold LLC (Salt Lake City, UT) was founded in
2006, and operates in a 3,500 sf facility with seven employees. Kevin C.
Jensen, President of Radius, notes that the company provides a range of
mold manufacturing services including hot runner, cold runner, multi-
cavity molds, 3-Plate molds and more. The company also provides mold
design, prototype mold making, product development assistance, and
engineering consulting services. “
A&O Mold & Engineering Inc. (Vicksburg, MI) provides product
design, mold design and manufacture for a variety of plastic processes
including RIM, injection, blow, and roto-molding. The company was
founded in 1986, and operated in a 25,000-sf facility employing 40
people. CEO Doug Northup said he joined AMBA “because AMBA is
the largest and best lobby group ﬁghting for us!”
Legacy Precision Molds Inc. (Grandville, MI) was founded in 1995
and currently has eight employees, operating in a 6,000 sf facility. The
company specializes in smaller-sized plastic injection molds for the
automotive, furniture, marine and medical industries. Legacy president
Thomas J. Van Ree said that he decided to join the AMBA because he is
interested in what the AMBA offers through networking, seminars and
its active advocacy for the mold building industry. “That plays a huge
part in what an organization stands for - we need to keep manufacturing
in the U.S.,” he said.
WELCOME TO THE AMBA!! ❏
AMBA Members – Stand Out From the Rest
Add a logo to your online listing. OEMs and mold purchasers
go to www.amba.org to locate a mold shop. Send your
company logo and you can personalize your listing and stand
out from the rest! Send your logo via e-mail, in a .GIF or .JPG
format, to Sue Daniels at email@example.com.
Part & Mold Inspection Services
That Goes the Distance
Reverse Engineering - First Article Inspection - Mold Analysis
From tiny, intricate parts to huge molds
and assemblies, Exact Metrology has your
contract inspection needs covered. Our
portable metrology toolbox of 3D laser and
white light scanners allows us to measure at
your facility or ours.
Additionally, we can implement an
equipment solution from our long list
of suppliers (including ROMER, NDI,
Metronor, Breuckmann and PolyWorks) and
provide you the training to do it yourself.
Give us a call or visit our website to learn more.
AMBA Members Win MoldMaking Technology Magazine Leadtime
AMBA member company Commercial Tool & Die of Comstock Park,
MI was named as the 2009 Leadtime Leader Large Shop award winner
for the second year in a row, and the 2009 winner in the Small Shop
category was another AMBA member company, Byrne Tool & Die, of
Rockford, MI. Another AMBA member company, Armin Tool & Mfg.
of South Elgin, IL took the Honorable mention category for Large Shop.
Congratulations to all of you!
Byrne Tool (Rockford, MI)
Byrne Tool specializes in fast, low-cost small- to medium-size plastic
injection molds. We support the entire life cycle of bringing plastic
components and assemblies to market. Our biggest differentiator is our
lean culture and customer service. We feel we are a very progressive
company embracing lean in our industry. We have seen tremendous
results over the past 5 years with a rise in sales of 100% with decreased
overhead and increased proﬁtability.
Another differentiating factor is that we have a self-directed workforce
and not one incorporating hierarchy. We have had our employees
participate in DISC testing and training to provide our teams with a
better understanding of their own behaviors and emotions as well as that
of other team members. This has really helped with collaboration and
accountability amongst the team. There’s a deﬁnite sense of family here
and there’s a total buy-in when it comes to how to work and improve on
everything. We do a lot of team building that includes quarterly events
with activities like bowling, poker nights, trade shows and Habitat for
Humanity. With Habitat for Humanity, we take the entire company to
volunteer a day to help build a home for someone in need. It’s proven
to be very rewarding and indirectly enhances our own lives and work
environment. The team loves it. Our focus is to empower our team to
succeed in everything they do, both personally and professionally, and
to continue that success for the rest of their lives.
In 2008, we experienced a 25% increase in sales! In addition, there was
no additional overhead or hours worked. It’s one of those things that
make us cautiously optimistic for the future. It was a great year for us.
2009 will be more challenging, but we’re excited about it. We have a
vision, but we always evolve based on the dynamics of the environment
we’re in, both internally and externally.
Dynamic Tool & Design (Menomonee Falls, WI)
Dynamic Tool & Design, a manufacturer of high-volume injection
molds, recently invested a million dollars with the purchase of ﬁve new
pieces of equipment.
Dynamic has added two new high speed precision vertical machining
centers, one for graphite cutting and a second for both hardened steel
and graphite cutting. Both centers have accuracies of .0001 to .0002.
These purchases will help meet different needs combining the high
speed machining of mold steels with superior graphite machining
ability as well. With these multiple uses, along with there reputation for
speed and accuracy, it will be able to pick up extra load in both areas.
This will contribute to the best possible time reduction of customers’
projects, according to the company.
Dynamic has also upgraded its EDM department with the addition
of two new Mitsubishi die sinking EDM’s. These new machines
are replacing two older models to allow for faster burning, tighter
tolerances in the .0001 to .0002 and superior copper EDM’ing.
A new CNC lathe with glass scales and live tooling has also been added
to the ﬂoor. This is an addition to the company’s lathe department and
will provide closer tolerances and better control of round components,
reducing lead times on long lead-time components.
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A press release states, “Each of these pieces means a better mold
or component, with closer tolerances and shorter deliveries for the
customer. When a customer asks ‘what are you doing to reduce
tolerances, or to speed up delivery time?’ this is our answer. We are
investing in both our future and the customers. By working with the
best equipment and the best people, Dynamic is always a world leader
in injection molds.” For more information, visit www.dyntool.com.
Electroform Adds New Engel Press
Electroform Company Inc., a manufacturer of high-quality, multi-cavity
injection molds for two-shot, in-mold decorating, multi-component in-
mold assembly, and engineering R&D for the consumer, medical, and
packaging markets, has installed an Engel e-max 110-ton all electric
press in the company’s R&D facility.
Electroform specializes in building molding/manufacturing cells, and
recently completed an extensive class 100,000 clean room cell for a
major medical manufacturer. “We built the tooling and the automation,
and designed and integrated the entire cell. We’ve seen a considerable
cycle time savings by going from hydraulic to electric presses,”
said Electroform President Wade Clark. “Most of the molding cells
we’re developing are all servo-driven and electric driven to optimize
Engel will also use the e-max at Electroform’s facility as a
demonstration and technical center to show the new technology in
operation, and see ﬁrst-hand how the machine and mold work together.
“We’re continuing to develop new mold technologies with respect to in-
mold assembly and in-mold decorating, and this new all-electric Engel
press gives us the ability to showcase these technologies by optimizing
the cycle times,” said Clark. “The e-max can run extremely fast and
has the latest technology, making a good ﬁt with the type of molds we
Ezell Precision Tool Co. (Clearwater, FL)
A new mold core and cavity repair service that refurbishes damaged
parts at a cost which is typically 70% less expensive than purchasing
a new part is being introduced by Ezell Precision Tool Company of
Ezell’s Mold Core and Cavity Repair Service is performed by this
producer of mold cores, sleeves, cavities and other die and mold-ready
components featuring tolerances to 0.000050”. Capable of restoring
damaged parts to print dimensions, the turn-around for repairs is usually
two to four weeks, at a cost which is typically 70% less expensive than
purchasing a new part.
Depending upon evaluation of the broken part, Ezell employs the latest
welding technologies, followed by regrinding and EDM to restore the
part’s dimensions and surface ﬁnishes. They can interchange steels to
achieve greater hardness and wear characteristics to help prevent future
wear problems where appropriate. Cores, cavities and other tooling can
Ezell’s Mold Core and Cavity Repair Service is priced according to part
complexity, degree of damage, process and materials. They offer a free
evaluation of broken parts.
Industrial Molds Group (Rockford, IL)
Industrial Molds Group is expanding their capacity and their quality, in
addition to investing in their future. April of 2009 saw a new Makino
Industrial Molds Group specializes in all facets of injection mold
manufacturing including design, engineering, tooling, and special
machining services. We’re equally adept at developing new tools,
design optimization, or reworking existing tools.
News for Die Casters
2008 Wage Survey Shows More Than 30% Pay Increase For Some Jobs
Maintenance person’s pay increases 36% in 2008 over 2007 according
to statistics in the latest North American Die Casting Association
(NADCA) 2008 Annual Wage & Fringe Beneﬁts Survey. Other
professions proved not so fortunate, such as CNC operators embracing a
34% decrease in wages.
The ﬁndings were based on an in-depth study of 37 domestic companies
in the die casting industry and a comprehensive look at 13 different
job classiﬁcations. The data in the survey includes comparisons of
hourly wage earners, how employees are compensated, what beneﬁts
are received, as well as an analysis of how practices vary by company
size and location. In addition, summaries regarding insurance rates and
absenteeism have been incorporated.
“The data in this Wage & Fringe Beneﬁts Survey reﬂects total pay,
including overtime, and is indicative of the economic times the die
casting industry is experiencing,” said Daniel L. Twarog, NADCA’s
president. “More companies are paying to keep their older machines
running, while time in the CNC area is decreasing.”
In 2008, the median annual sales of the participating companies in
the survey was $21.6 million per year; such die casters utilized 16 die
casting machines, employed 118 full-time direct labor employees and
79 hourly production employees. This data reﬂects a sampling of the
information that can be found in the 2008 Wage and Fringe Beneﬁt
To provide more ﬂexibility in the analysis, the survey comes with a
searchable CD-ROM containing a database of all surveyed participants
and individual company data from 1999 to 2008. Search results may
be saved and exported into a spreadsheet program for individual
statistical analysis. To order a copy of item #852 visit www.diecasting.
Layoffs - How To Avoid Adding Insult To
Let’s be clear-getting laid off is horrible. It ﬁlls the laid off person with
uncertainty. It throws a family into turmoil. It makes people doubt
their worth and capacity. It spreads mistrust and paralysis through an
Leaders tend to consistently underestimate the costs of layoffs and the
price they’ll pay to rebuild capacity when things turn around. With that
said, there are times an organization’s survival demands it. It’s better to
lose 10% of the workforce now than lose 100% later.
Acknowledge that no matter how well you plan, there will still be pain.
However, there’s a big difference between being cut by a surgeon who
cares about you and being cut by a mugger in an alley. Far too many
organizations behave like muggers during layoffs.
Ever thought of what it would be like to have security guards show
up unannounced to your ofﬁce and stand by while you ﬁll boxes of
belongings accumulated over years in a position? It leaves you with a
startling sense for the difference between organizational defense and
personal dignity. There’s no way to alleviate the pain of joblessness, but
you can control the insult of the process.
So what turns leaders into surgeons rather than muggers? Nothing
reveals a leader’s soul more than the way he or she handles necessary
dismissals. Unless you are willing to sacriﬁce time, money, and personal
pain in the service of those you are dismissing, you deserve no loyalty
from those who remain.
With that as a backdrop, here are some things that can help you avoid
adding insult to the injury of layoffs:
• Be immediately transparent about possibilities and certainties.
• Feel pain when you deliver pain.
• Respond to anger with compassion.
M&M Tooling Investing in the Future
M&M Tooling Inc. continues on the expansion track begun two years
ago when the company doubled its square footage to 4500 ft. Recently,
M&M Tooling added more equipment to bring to ﬁve the number of
Mazak milling machines. The ﬁfth one purchased is a Mazak vertical
milling machine. “This one complements the very large Mazak we have
in place,” said Michael Mirante. “We had a situation, in which we’d get a
larger job opportunity, but with only one large machine it became difﬁcult
to meet delivery, and delivery is critical in today’s world. With two large
Mazaks, delivery requirements are easier to meet.” M&M also purchased
a large Okomoto 1632 automatic surface grinder automatic.
Mirante isn’t letting any grass grow under his feet, and recently took
advantage of a slow- down in business during the month of March to
have a new Web site designed and created (www.mmtooling.com) and
that is still a work in progress. “We want to put in more photos, add an
employment opportunity link, and some other features,” said Mirante.
M&M also has new promotional material, created a new ad for the
AMBA directory, and is currently working on new brochures for the
AMBA lit rack at NPE.
“Most importantly, we made a transition with our capabilities to work
with 3D ﬁles,” Mirante said. “We went to college and took a Solid Works
course, and can now we can accept 3D ﬁles from our customers. It was
a huge leap for us, but not having 3D capability was starting to hurt us.
Everyone is in the 3D world now and I was losing opportunities. Now
we’re ready for the up-turn, and things are looking good. We got several
new jobs in and we’re ready.”
Mako Mold Expands and Celebrates 40 Years in Business
Mako Mold Corp. is in the process of moving into new space, trading its
current two unite os 2,000 sf each for a single 6,000 sf facility that will
allow the company better work ﬂow, machine layout, and overall process
efﬁciencies. Mike Armbrust, Vice President, of Mako Mold, states, “We
are taking advantage of this opportunity to streamline our manufacturing
process and reduce manufacturing time.”
Mako Mold is also celebrating its 40
anniversary this year. The company
was founded in February, 1969, by Phil and Lynne Denemark. Phil
remains active with the company as the President. “We’re excited about
the opportunity to better serve our customers in our new facility and very
proud to say that we’ve been in business for 40 years,” said Armbrust. ❏
• Be as generous as possible.
• Replace general insincerity with speciﬁc commitments.
If you and your managers demonstrate vulnerability, empathy, and
sacriﬁce in the coming days, you'll get through it without allowing
awful necessity to turn into unnecessary alienation.
Taken from the Spring 2009 issue of the Safety Net Newsletter from
Gibson Insurance Group. ❏
Worker Theft Is Up - Recession To Blame
In the wake of the recession more businesses are facing a growing
ﬁnancial threat: employee theft ranging from ﬁctitious sales
transactions, inﬂated expense reports, illegal kickbacks, theft of ofﬁce
equipment to retail products meant for sale to customers.
Employers suspect that workers are pilfering from them to cope with
ﬁnancial difﬁculties at home or in anticipation of being laid off. Experts
speculate that people have a tendency to give in to temptation to commit
criminal behavior more so in leaner times. Further, employers give
additional attention to the bottom line, which results in more theft being
Employers are hot targets because workers know their systems, controls
and weaknesses, and they can bide their time waiting for the right
opportunity. The elimination of perks such as employee discounts
and holiday parties can aggravate the problem. Employees are feeling
that they are not being treated fairly by their employer, so they feel
justiﬁed taking from them. It’s not that theft doesn’t happen when times
are good, but these problems come up with increasing frequency in a
To many employers’ chagrin, the workers guilty of the most grandiose
theft frequently turn out to be those they deemed most trustworthy. They
are people being given access to systems and information that allow
them to commit fraud. Their crimes-typically theft of small amounts
of money over long periods of time-often go unnoticed until economic
downturns because that’s when companies generally become more
vigilant about counting pennies.
A 2007 study shows that senior-level employees with an average tenure
of seven years are responsible for 25% of all reported internal frauds.
Overall, 85% of fraudsters are male, 44% are between the ages of 31
and 40, 38% possess at least a bachelor’s degree, 12% typically hold a
postgraduate degree or higher. Workers who steal even small amounts
of money or goods from an employer risk big repercussions, from ﬁring
to civil lawsuits to criminal charges resulting in jail time.
An employer’s best defense against worker theft is prevention,
beginning with a code of conduct or integrity. Video cameras, tracking
devices, monitoring tools, and frequent inventory procedures help deter
pilfering. Counter-signatures on checks and purchase orders, outside
auditing or other account reconciliation by someone not authorized to
deposit or withdraw funds, joint control of securities and other ﬁnancial
instruments, checks stamped “For Deposit Only” are all measures that
help minimize the potential for theft.
Make sure the Crime Coverage on your business insurance is up to
snuff, and get tips from your insurance company’s loss prevention
experts on how to keep your business from becoming part of the
Excerpted from The Wall Street Journal, December 11, 2008 Businesses
Say Theft by Their Workers Is Up, by Sarah E. Needleman. Taken from
the Winter 2009 Insurance Update Newsletter. ❏
Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) -
New regulations interpreting the Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
have been posted by the Department of Labor and were effective on
January 16, 2009. Brief highlights include:
Eligibility requirements of at least 12 months have been clariﬁed: the
12 months need not be continuous but cannot go back more than seven
years. An employee seeking FMLA leave associated with an incapacity
must visit and receive treatment from a health care provider. Such
“treatment” must be an in-person visit. The ﬁrst visit must take place
within seven days of the ﬁrst day of incapacity. If a qualifying event
is based on two visits, they must occur within 30 days. To take leave
for a chronic condition, an employee must make “periodic visits” for
treatment by a health care provider of at least twice per year.
Care for Service Members changes in FMLA involve the deﬁnition
of a “qualifying exigency” associated with the active duty of a family
member in the National Guard or Reserves, who can take leave to care
for a military service member, and notiﬁcation requirements for both
employees and employers.
The eight exigencies are:
1. after up to seven day notice of deployment - up to seven days
from date of notice.
2. military events and related activities - military ceremony or
program, or family support and assistance programs.
3. childcare and school activities - care or activities of child of
4. ﬁnancial and legal arrangements for the military member; e.g.
preparing power of attorney.
5. counseling for employee, military member, or child of military
6. rest and recuperation with military member - up to ﬁve days for
7. post-deployment activities - military ceremony or program
within 90 days of return or in case of death of military member.
8. additional activities related to call up - as agreed by employee
FMLA also provides for a period of up to 26 weeks of leave to care for
a spouse, child, parent or next of kin (deﬁned beyond spouse, parent,
child as blood relative with legal custody, siblings, grandparents, aunts,
uncles, ﬁrst cousins) who is a current member of the armed forces (but
excluding retired or discharged military service members) who returns
with serious injury or illness that was incurred in the line of duty while
on active duty. The service member must be unﬁt to perform his/her
duties and be undergoing medical treatment, recuperation or therapy, be
on outpatient status, or be otherwise on the temporary disability retired
An employee must give notice to an employer of the need for leave “as
soon as both possible and practical”, expected to be the same day or
next business day after the employee becomes aware of the need. Notice
must be at least 30 days prior and if that has not been possible the
employee must explain why at least 30 days was not practicable.
Employers now have ﬁve business days to provide an eligibility notice
to an employee seeking leave. If denied, the employer’s response must
BICO STEEL SERVICE CENTERS
BICO AKRON, INC.
BICO MICHIGAN, INC.
Grand Rapids, Michigan
BICO SOUTH, INC.
Spartanburg, S. Carolina
include at least one reason why an employee is not eligible. The full
text of the amendments can be read and downloaded at http://frwebgate.
Taken from the Winter 2009 Issue If the Insurance Update Newsletter
from Gibson Insurance. ❏
Health Plan Coverage for College Students
and ‘Disability’ Changes
“Michelle’s Law” (H.R.2851), which amends ERISA, the PHSA,
and the tax code, requires group health plans and insurance to extend
coverage for dependent college students who lose coverage due to their
less-than-full-time student status because of medical reasons.
The extended coverage period is the lesser of: one year after the ﬁrst
day of the medically necessary leave of absence; or until the date on
which the plan would otherwise terminate such coverage. Under the
bill, the student’s attending physician must submit to the plan or insurer
a certiﬁcation stating that the dependent is suffering from a severe
illness or injury and that the leave of absence is medically necessary.
The bill - named after a student who, against medical advice, attended
school full time while undergoing colon cancer treatment in order to
retain healthcare coverage - will be effective in plan years beginning
one year after it is signed into law and will apply to medically necessary
leaves of absence beginning during such plan years.
Taken from the Winter 2009 Beneﬁts brieﬁng newsletter from Gibson
Insurance Group. ❏
By: Karla Dobbeck, PHR, Human
Employers are using many methods
to conserve employment costs. Some
are moving to a four-day workweek or
shortening workdays. Employers have the
right to set the hours their employees work
so shortening the day or workweek will not
cause a problem for your hourly workers.
There are a few things to consider though
for both hourly and exempts.
– If your employees earn vacation DAYS, they probably earned the
days based on an eight-hour day. When lengthening or shortening the
workday, please consider how this change will affect your vacation
calculations. If your payroll service deducts hours of vacation used, think
about making sure your employees understand how they will be charged
for vacation. Hourly employees will readily understand the difference;
there might be a problem for you, though with your exempt employees.
Example – your exempt employees earn three weeks of vacation or 120
hours. While they were working eight hour days, 120/8=15 days. Moving
to four 10 hour days would result in 120/10=12 days so please be careful.
Remember, exempt employees cannot be paid vacation or docked in
anything less than full day increments. A DOL fact sheet on docking is
available upon request.
Human Resources Human Resources
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– Now might be a good time to audit your wage and hour practices.
Many employers misclassify their ‘salaried’ employees as exempt when
they should, in fact, remain hourly workers. Re-classifying employees
correctly will allow for a reduction in hours and in pay for those folks.
Since the Fair Labor Standards Act requires exempt employees to be paid
for the job as a whole and not for the hours it takes them to do the job,
it would not be appropriate to cut their salaries because of a reduction in
hours. If you do change classiﬁcations, make sure to begin tracking hours.
Should the time come when employees are working a full schedule again,
you would not be allowed to ‘move them back’ to an exempt status. DOL
fact sheets and exempt status worksheets are available upon request.
– Some employers are asking if they are required to allow employees
to use vacation time to make up for a shortened workweek. The answer
is not necessarily. If your policy allows you to approve or deny vacation
requests based on business needs and the purpose of shortening the
week is to save funds, you would be within your rights to deny vacation
requests based on a business necessity. But please be careful! When
anyone thinks someone else is trying to take something from us, it is
human nature to try and get it back or to get even. A prudent employer
will understand this perspective and allow at least a day or two of
vacation each month thus sharing the burden. Also, if the employee
quits, all vacation is due at the next pay date. ❏
Tax & Business Tax & Business
Retaining Key Employeess
Unless you have capable successors and employees, your closely held
business may not survive your departure if key employees leave instead
of adapting to the new owners and management. Therefore, a business
succession plan should be in place and contain strategies to identify,
retain, and reward key employees.
There are numerous methods for retaining and rewarding a key
employee’s commitment, loyalty, and hard work. The most effective
incentives are usually monetary and include, but are not restricted to,
the following types of incentives.
Incentive stock options. Incentive stock options (ISOs) can provide
key employees additional compensation through the opportunity to
share in the appreciation of the company’s stock value. ISOs are usually
granted to the employee at no cost with an exercise price at or above
the stock’s current market price; however, they might have alternative
minimum tax implications.
Nonqualiﬁed stock option. A nonqualiﬁed stock option (NQSO)
is an option that speciﬁcally states it is an NQSO or one that does
not meet the requirements of an ISO. Like an ISO, you can use an
NQSO to provide key employees additional compensation through the
opportunity to share in the appreciation of the company’s stock value.
Restricted stock. A restricted stock plan transfers stock to an employee
subject to certain restrictions. Often, the shares are transferred to the
employee at little or no cost, but are subject to forfeiture if the employee
fails to fulﬁll the terms of the plan. A common restriction requires
employees to forfeit their shares if they terminate employment within a
certain number of years.
Stock appreciation right (SAR). A stock appreciation right (SAR) is
the right to receive compensation based on the increase in value of a
speciﬁed number of the employer’s shares of stock. When an SAR is
exercised, the company usually pays the employee cash equal to the
stock’s appreciation, although payment can be made in shares equal
in value to the appreciation. Because the employee does not have to
spend any cash to beneﬁt from the plan, he or she may prefer an SAR
to a stock option, which often requires cash to exercise. However,
the employee does not receive any dividends paid on the company’s
outstanding shares with an SAR.
Please contact your accountant to discuss the characteristics and tax
aspects of these plans.
Taken from the November 2008 issue of the Tax & Business Alert. ❏
Annual Update on Expense Reporting and
Per Diem Rates
An accountable expense allowance is an arrangement whereby the
employer pays an employee a ﬁxed amount or a ﬁxed formula of money
to be used for employment-related expenses. The employee must
account for how the money is used. All or a portion of the allowance or
arrangement is not subject to payroll withholding rules provided the
necessary substantiation requirements are met. IRS per diem rates
currently available are:
Mileage (Effective January 1, 2009 - December 31, 2009.)
• 55¢ per recorded business mile
• 14¢ charitable use
• 24¢ medical or moving
Lodging, meals and incidentals (Effective October 1, 2008)
I. High/Low Method
• High Cost Locality $256 ($58 considered meals and incidentals)
• Other Cost Locality $158 ($45 considered meals and incidentals)
• Contact your tax professional for a list of “high cost
localities” or the most recently published “speciﬁc locality”
II. Transportation Industry
• Rate for meals and incidentals
• $52 per day for continental U.S. travel
• $58 per day for non-U.S. travel
III. Federal Per Diem Rate
• $109 standard rate ($39 considered meals and incidental
Treasury regulations require non-accountable expense allowances
be treated as taxable wages subject to federal income tax and social
security tax withholding.
Source: Revenue Procedures 2008-72 and 2008-59.
Taken from the HLB Tautges, Ltd. Year End Tax reporting 2008. ❏
New Diesel-Fueled Car Credit
In response to high gas prices and a renewed interest in environmental
causes by the American public, Congress has added many provisions
to the tax code to encourage taxpayers to conserve. The Energy Policy
Act of 2005 introduced an alternative motor vehicle credit (IRC Section
30B) for purchasers of new, hybrid autos.
Similarly, the IRS recently certiﬁed certain diesel-fueled vehicles for the
alternative motor vehicle credit. This credit is a nonrefundable offset to
your regular tax liability and is taken on Form 8910. In order to qualify,
the vehicle must be purchased new (leased vehicles and previously
owned vehicles do not qualify), and be certiﬁed by the IRS. The diesel-
fueled vehicles that qualify for the credit include the following:
• 2009 Volkswagen Jetta 2.0L TDI Sedan manual or automatic
– $1,300 credit
• 2009 Volkswagen Jetta 2.0L TDI SportWagen manual or automatic
– $1,300 credit
• Mercedes GL 320 Blue Tec – $1,800 credit
• Mercedes R 320 Blue Tec – $1,550 credit
• Mercedes ML 320 Blue Tec – $900 credit
Taxpayers looking to take advantage of the alternative motor vehicle
credit should act fast. The full amount of the credit can only be taken
through the ﬁrst quarter following the sale of the 60,000th vehicle of
each model. In the second and third quarter following the sale of the
60,000th vehicle of each model, taxpayers are eligible for 50% of the
credit. In the fourth and ﬁfth quarters following the sale of the 60,000th
vehicle of each model, 25% of the credit may be taken.
Taken from the January 2009 issue of the Blackman Kallick Tax
You are not a leader unless you have followers; a leader without
followers is called a failure. Regardless of your skills, if your staff
doesn’t feel heard and doesn’t trust you, they will always do the
minimum. They will watch the clock and be ready to leave at 4:45 every
afternoon. They will do just enough each day to avoid getting ﬁred, and
they will hope the idea you came up with without their input fails. That’s
right—you can spend your life delegating to people who want your
projects to fail. How smart is that?
OK, you have to listen; I am sure you already know that. The issue is,
how well do people really listen? Most studies show that 75% of the
world’s population does not listen well.
Here is an insight that you won’t ﬁnd in many books, keynote speeches
or training programs. As a whole, we don’t listen very well and it’s not
our fault! That’s right, I am sure you are used to hearing and reading that
all of our communication problems are of our making. However, most
experts agree that from birth to ﬁve years of age, we learn more than we
will for the rest of our lives.
Even if you earn 15 doctorate degrees in your lifetime, you still acquired
most of your knowledge in early childhood. In those formative years, if a
child does not feel heard by the adults in its life, it does not possess good
listening skills. The bottom line is that it’s hard to listen when no one
ever listened to you. Listening is not hereditary. It’s an acquired skill.
Are we going to blame the parents? No! It’s difﬁcult to listen to young
children when we are trying to look out for their welfare. When my
stepdaughter was ﬁve, she asked me if Dracula drives a taxi cab. I said,
“Well…, I guess if it’s a night job. Uh, wait a minute! What kind of
question is that?”
She also asked me if she could have a tattoo—not a fake, stick-on tattoo
from an ice cream parlor vending machine, but a real one. I said, “No,
because you’re in kindergarten—and I’m taking the TV out of your room
just for asking that question.”
People are more likely to follow your example than to follow your
advice. We create better listeners by being better listeners.
Unfortunately, we don’t have much evidence of people returning from
communication-training programs as better listeners. It doesn’t take a lot
of research to ﬁgure out that poor listeners get very little from seminars
on listening. So we don’t listen and it prevents us from being effective
leaders. If we can’t do much to improve our listening skills, we have to
focus on what we can do in the condition we are in.
The key, then, is to focus on making sure people feel heard. And the ﬁrst
step requires recognizing and recovering from distractions.
One day, as I listened to an employee talk about his wants and needs,
my mind started to wander. There he was, sharing his core issues, and
I’m thinking to myself, “Look at the size of this guy’s head!” It was
hard to focus. Once I was trying to listen to a prospect on a sales call
when I noticed he had red hair, blonde eyebrows and a black mustache.
I remember thinking, “It’s Mr. Potato Face! Something has to be a stick-
on; that’s not all him.”
After we recover from our own distractions, we have to deal with the real
issues at hand. The ﬁrst of these issues is what I refer to as “the pitch in
your head.” It can be anything from a preconceived idea that a manager
has about an employee, to a practiced presentation that you are dying to
spew on your unsuspecting sales victims (prospects, I mean).
Sure, you ask a question just as you were taught to do in your sales or
management training program—you know, a question like “Based on
Retirement, Gift, and Estate Planning
Limitations for 2009
New limitations are effective in 2009 for some types of retirement
plans, gifts, and estate taxes. First of all, the IRA contribution limit is
unchanged at $5,000 in 2009 (for individuals with at least that much
in earned income). In addition, the IRA catch-up contribution amount
for taxpayers age 50 and older by year-end remains at $1,000. So, a
qualiﬁed individual can save up to $6,000 in an IRA while a qualiﬁed
married couple can save up to $12,000, as long as they have at least that
much in earned income and both are age 50 or more by year-end.
Qualiﬁed retirement [401(k), 403(b), and 457] plan deferral
(contribution) limits increase by $1,000 to $16,500 in 2009. Taxpayers
age 50 or more by year-end are eligible to make an additional catch-
up contribution of up to $5,500, an increase of $500 from last year.
So, it is possible for an eligible employee to sock away up to $22,000
($16,500 + $5,500) in a qualiﬁed plan this year. SIMPLE plan deferral
limits increase by $1,000 to $11,500 in 2009. Catch-up contributions of
$2,500 (unchanged from the prior year) can also be made to a SIMPLE
plan by taxpayers who are age 50 or more at year-end.
The annual gift tax exclusion increases by $1,000 in 2009 to $13,000,
or $26,000 when a married couple makes a gift-splitting election. The
estate tax exclusion increases by $1.5 million to $3.5 million this year.
The estate tax exclusion can be used to bequeath up to a total of $3.5
million to nonspouse beneﬁciaries and escape taxation. (Transfers to a
spouse can generally be made estate tax-free using the unlimited marital
Taken from the March 2009 issue of the Tax & Business Alert. ❏
Business Success Strategies Business Success Strategies
Listening Like a Leader
By: Garrison Wynn
Our studies of the most effective people in
corporate America show that the top 2%
are effective not because they executed best
practices well. They did not make the most
phone calls or have the best processes. They
simply understood the truth about trust:
• People do business with people they
• They like people they trust.
• They trust people who have a
detectable level of compassion and competence.
Does it take time to build trust? The truth is that you have known people
for ﬁve years who still don’t trust you, and you’ve known some for ﬁve
minutes who do. Our research shows that trust is usually created by
showing a detectable level of concern. When people truly believe you are
concerned for them, they tend to think you possess good judgment. After
all, if you care about them, you must know what you are doing.
So what is the fastest and most effective way to show people that you
care and you’re competent?
Make sure they feel heard, which is more than just listening. I call it
listening like a leader.
Classiﬁed Corner Classiﬁed Corner
FOR SALE - 2001 FIDIA K165 3+2 Hi Speed CNC
Description: Bought this machine at the 2002 IMTS show as a demo
model. All service records, recently uggraded FIDIA C-20 control.3,000
- 30,000 RPM Spindle. X- 1,000mm by Y - 600mm by Z -500mm.
1574 In/Minute feedrate 20 position tool changer HSK 50E Spindle
FIDIA Laser Tool Measurement, Excellent condition - Fantastic ﬁnishes
and accuracy Priced for QUICK sale! Have new machines coming in!!!!
Contact: Steve Rotman, Ameritech Die & Mold, Inc
Price: $82,000 OBO
Post ed 4/ 6/ 09
FOR SALE - Blanchard Grinder
Description: 20CD-36 38” swing 3/4” chuck life
Contact : Raymond Mueller III
Price: call 314-522-8080
FOR SALE - Blanchard Grinder
Description: 32-60 60” chuck 1/2” chuck life 72” swing 100 hp Contact
Contact: Raymond Mueller III
Price: call 314-522-8080
FOR SALE - Blanchard grinder
Description: 1993 model 54HD-100 100” chuck 120” swing 54”
segmented wheel 250hp soft start 3/4” chuck life
Contact Info: Raymond Mueller III
Price: call 314-522-8080
FOR SALE - KM-80-220C2 (88 TON)
Description: Tie bar spacing 405 X 405 mm. (15.945 X 15.945 in.)Mold
Height 250 mm. (9.84in.)Daylight 750 mm (29.52 in.)3.7 oz. barrel
Contact Info: Jarrod McKay, 814-724-8687 x28, jpm@realcodiversiﬁed.com
FOR SALE - KM-50-90C2 (55 TON)
Description: Tie bar spacing 320 x 320 mm. (12.598 x 12.598 in.)Mold
Height 200 mm. (7.87 in.)Daylight 550 mm (21.65 in.)1.66 oz. barrel
Contact Info: Jarrod P. McKay, 814-724-8687 x28, jpm@realcodiversiﬁed.com
FOR SALE - Quincy 7.5 HP industrial Air compressor
Description: Used air compressor stored as back up and in very good
Contact Info: firstname.lastname@example.org 269-323-0388
FOR SALE - Kent Surface Grinder
Description: Model PFG200N, 6x16 Table, 3,480rpm Spindle Speed,
60Hz, 1KW-2P Spindle Motor, May be purchased with or without
Contact Info: David Drawert, 480-921-9939, Tempe, Arizona
Price: $1,200 w/o Mag Chuck or $1,400 with Mag Chuck.
Posted 3/17/09 ❏
Tech Corner Tech Corner
what criteria are your decisions made?” As they talk and you diligently
pretend to listen, the pitch in your head starts to play; and when the
prospect says something that strikes a chord in you, triggering how much
you know, your pitch ﬁnds the pause it was looking for and off you go.
“I know exactly what you are talking about because I have had many
people just like you with this exact same situation. As a matter of fact, it
was this time last year and they even looked a lot like you.”
You then project your opinion, experience or spiel onto the person as a
solution to his or her problem.
Instead of feeling heard, the person feels quickly judged, and
communication does not take place. It was dead before the spew was
The problem with this scenario is that you rob people of their uniqueness.
When you tell them you know exactly what the problem is, they tend to
want to show you how unique they are. You actually create your own
resistance and prevent your skills and even your empathy from making
When people are talking, you are thinking about you or about what you
can do to help them help you. It’s a natural thing for us to do, and it
forces us to pitch hard and focus on convincing rather than on gaining
So what do the most effective people do differently?
They make sure the people they are dealing with feel heard and can
retain their uniqueness. If you make people feel important, you will be
important to them!
But an even bigger realization comes from all of this.
When you focus on how people feel about what they are saying, you
increase the level of true concern you have for others. You actually start
to become the person you thought you were pretending to be: a true leader!
© Wynn Solutions 2005. Author: Garrison Wynn (http://www.
wynnsolutions.com), providing keynotes, training programs and business
solutions for success. ❏
New Friction Pullers from Progressive
Components Advance Parting Line Control
Progressive Components, introduces its new
Friction Puller for parting line control. It
advances parting line control by improving
mold life cycle and performance over other
Unique features not found with competitors’
• Internal venting - no extra through holes
and no additional machining in the back
of the mold is required
• Self-locating – designed to allow the
resin assemblies to self locate, even if plates shift due to thermal
expansion or machining variances.
• Indicator Arrows – remove guesswork during installation and
“Our Friction Pullers have been tested in the ﬁeld and proven to
function smoothly, with limited adjustment, even after a million cycles,”
• (2) New series of slides
• A total of (18) new sizes
• In stock ready to ship
• CAD files are available on our website
• Call for more information
in the USA
OMNI Mold Systems customers have been asking for more size options for our Versa-Slides
We have listened and are now stocking two new series (45 series) and (55 series).
• The (45 Series) will fill the gap between the 40 and 50 series slides with a 4.375”
slide face width.
• The (55 Series) will fill the gap between the 50 and 60 series slides with a 7.125”
slide face width.
That’s 18 new sizes in all! No more need to custom build those in between sizes.
OMNI MOLD SYSTEMS
Toll Free Ph 888-666-4755 www.omnimold.com
Toll Free Fax 888-816-2850 email@example.com
Absolute Machine Tools, Inc. ..........................17
Alba Enterprises, Inc . ......................................27
Bico Steel Service Centers ................................39
Choice Mold Components ...............................15
Crystallume Engineered Diamond ..................11
CVD Diamond Corporation .............................42
Dynamic International ....................................47
Edro Specialty Steels ........................................19
Exact Metrology, Inc. .......................................35
A. Finkl & Sons Co. ..........................................33
Gibson Insurance Group ..................................48
Graphic Products North America ....................34
Graphite Express ..............................................31
Harroun Enterprises ........................................10
Hasco America ....................................................7
Incoe Corporation ............................................41
International Mold Steel, Inc. .........................40
Kelbros, Inc. .....................................................11
Millstar, LLC .....................................................36
Moldmaking Technology Magazine ..................6
OMNI Mold Systems, LLC ...............................45
Proceq USA, Inc. ..............................................20
Progressive Components ...................................2
Rocklin Manufacturing Co. ...............................7
Superior Die Set ...............................................13
Tarus Products, Incorporated ..........................28
Ultra Polishing ..................................................19
Vega Tool Corporation .....................................13
Wisconsin Engraving Co., Inc. / Unitex ..........31
Yellow Transportation, Inc. ..............................9
OSG Tap & Die, Inc. Introduces the
OSG has raised the bar with the next
evolution of Vanadium High Speed
Drills, the NEXUS. This latest product
from OSG features a unique 40 degree
helix, coupled with a sharp thinning point
designed to; reduce work hardening,
improve ﬁnish, and eliminate exit burrs.
The NEXUS also features WD1™, OSG’s
latest development in coating technology
for drills. Higher oxidation temperatures,
better adhesion strength, and elevated
hardness allow the NEXUS to run faster
without any lost tool life. ❏
said Wayne Hertlein, Applications Engineer at Progressive. “That kind
of durability, combined with our exclusive venting and self-centering
features, proves out this product’s value to the customer.”
Four sizes of the Friction Puller are available, off-the-shelf. For more
information, access our online catalog and product demo by visiting
www.procomps.com/demo, or contact Progressive’s Customer Service
team at 800-269-6653 (outside the U.S., dial +1 847 487-1000). ❏
Exact Metrology, Inc. Expands Product
Offering with NDI’s Portable Shop Floor
Exact Metrology, Inc.
announced today the addition
of NDI’s industrial suite
of shop-ﬂoor metrology
solutions to their product
offering. This includes NDI’s
OPTOTRAK® 3D Optical
Tracker, Laser Scanner
and related equipment
for inspection, reverse
engineering and high-speed
part tracking applications.
“NDI’s equipment lineup allows us to provide innovative solutions for our
clients, particularly in larger volume shop-ﬂoor tasks,” states Dean Solberg,
Principal at Exact Metrology. “Their optical trackers and related equipment
are ideal for a wide variety of coordinate measurement and dynamic
The addition of the NDI compliments Exact Metrology’s already extensive
product offering which includes manufacturers such as ROMER, Leica
Geosystems, Breuckmann, Metronor, Surphaser and InnovMetric. Exact
Metrology has been providing metrology equipment solutions and contract
measurement services for over ﬁfteen years.
For more information on Exact Metrology, please call them at 866-722-
2600 or visit www.exactmetrology.com. ❏
Leading Provider of
Insuring the AMBA
Personal Home & Auto
OSHA Compliance Consulting
Photo courtesy of PM Mold Company
Leading Provider of
American Mold Builders Association
P.O. Box 404
Medinah, IL 60157-0404
(Change Service Requested)
Permit No. 20