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ISO 9001

L’accréditation ISO 9001:2000 chez Kamek depuis 2005, gage de fournisseur de choix par l’Industrie pour l’injection au plastique

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AS 9100

L’accréditation AS9100, en vigueur depuis 2005 – Kamek est fournisseur de produits d’injection au plastique pour l’industrie Aérospatiale

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ISO 13485

L’accréditation ISO 13485, gage de fournisseur de choix par l’Industrie pour l’injection au plastique

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ISO/TS 16949

ISO/TS 16949 – Accréditation de qualité pour l’industrie de l’automobile depuis 2005, Kamek s’avère un fournisseur de choix en injection au plastique pour cette industrie

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WHAT IS NEW?

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+1 (514) 457-9300
+1 (855) 495-9062 Sans Frais

What is new?

Kamek moved into a new facility

Kamek has just moved into a new 62 000 ft2 facility. In addition to providing customers with our traditional turnkey Plastic Injection Molding services, we are pleased to inform of two very important changes. First we are now equipped with Class 10 000 and 100 000 Clean Room manufacturing facilities to service The Medical Industry. Next, we also have a complete Tool Room and all the necessary equipment to produce, maintain and repair Tooling. Please do not hesitate to contact us and find out how you can benefit from our full turnkey Plastic Injection Molding services.

 
IMM Magazine Article Archive

A self-made micromolder

By: Carl Kirkland

Running tiny parts on its homemade machines, this operation does nearly everything but make molds.

Although he’s a moldmaker by trade—an Austrian moldmaker, in fact, who began his apprenticeship in Innsbruck, Austria when he was just 14 years old—and although he’s the president of a company called, of all things, Kamek Precision Tools (Baie D’Urfe, QC), Hans Kerber does not build his own molds. He’s a custom molder. He builds something else, though: his own injection molding machines.

Oh, and he doesn’t just build your basic garden-variety molding machines, either. He builds his own micromolding machines. He built his first one more than 30 years ago.

Kamek molds about 45 million parts/year, using only 120,000 lb of material, mostly engineering resins and some commodities. In one particular case it micromolds about 100,000 parts/week. The final assembly, a light sensor destined for a German automaker, is made up of three segments, each weighing less than .04g. Kamek’s reject rate on these small parts is less than 1%.

So, why doesn’t he build his own molds? “It allows me more flexibility when addressing my customers’ needs,” says Kerber. “If you build your own toolroom, you limit the number of choices you can offer your customers.”

Kamek outsources its molds from around the world—from North America, Switzerland, and Germany, as well as China and Taiwan. Building them is just about the only thing Kerber doesn’t do.

He specifies every detail and verifies each mold. He has stringent requirements and maintains the same kind of close relationship with his mold suppliers as he does with his customers and his employees.

Lean micromolding

Kamek is anything but a one-man show, though, according to Glenn Mihalovic, business development manager. “Though very much involved, Mr. Kerber depends on his managers to run the day-to-day activities of his business. Hans makes sure we all have what we need to take care of our customers. Out of his first five employees, three are still with him.”

Kamek employs about 45 people today, who work three shifts, five days a week. “We’ve got a lot of good people here, and I’ve only lost one customer, in all that time” Kerber says. “We add value through service, providing a quick turnaround. Quality is a given. I believe we stay competitive through the efficiencies we gain through training.”

He says the open-door/open-book policy he practices with his employees, as well as with his customers and suppliers, all but eliminates any surprises. Any nonproductive time and repetitive, unnecessary work is all but eliminated by lean manufacturing.

“We concentrate on complex, tight-tolerance, flash-free molding,“ Kerber says. “Small parts require high-speed automation to maintain part consistency.”

An international consultant-engineering organization based in Québec City, QC called Toptech Consulting Group helped to put SMED, kaizen, and lean manufacturing and management principles into practice.

Cellular micromolding

All-pneumatic 21?2-ton/3g presses with plunger injection, programmable controls, and built-in gate cutters and needle valves, Kamek’s homemade M1 Series automatic micromolding systems are built to run nonstop, 24/7, and they do. Kerber built the original models for sale, but pulled them off the market two years later when approached to mold parts.

Three M1s team up to automatically produce 20,000 three-piece light detector components a day. They’re molded in PC, PA 66, and FR-PC, like so:

  • Light pipes molded on M1 #1 are automatically loaded into a mold on M1 #3, a turntable press.
  • Lenses reel-to-reel molded on M1 #2 are punched out and pushed into the M1 #3 mold by a moving plate.
  • A load sensor verifies the presence of the light pipes and lenses in the mold.
  • The mold closes and the third part, a diffuser, is overmolded by M1 #3 onto the other two parts in the mold.
  • The mold opens for part and runner removal and the cycle repeats.

“Everything is in the tooling,” Kerber says. “Most of our molds are made of D-2 or H-13 tool steel with a Rockwell C of 56-58. Our micromolds are designed by Kamek and constructed as per our specification by a select group of moldmaking specialists.”

Milieu management

Mihalovic says Kamek has recently expanded the number of value-added services it provides. Its assemblies are now as “large” as a handheld unit and can include complex features, as well as PC and PMMA lenses. These medium-sized parts are molded on Arburg’s latest models of molding machines, ranging up to around 170 tons.

Kerber dedicates his molding machines to running specific molds, all of which run like new, owing to Kamek’s rigorous PM and tool maintenance programs. Kamek’s also committed to standardization, using only Conair mold temperature controls, loaders, and dryers, for example.

The shop is as well designed as Kamek’s machines and molds. Machine utilities are separated by solid walls to contain contaminants. The floor has two coats of epoxy and is painted every two years. Ceilings are 24 ft high, providing for good air circulation, and have bright metal halite lighting. Huge air vents change the air as much as six times/hr and shop floor heat can be captured for winter warming.

Kamek’s expanding, too. What’s now the lobby will soon be a new QC/QA lab. And its administrative offices have been transformed into an assembly area where value-adding services such as ultrasonic welding and heatstaking are performed.

Kerber says he will continue to pursue tight-tolerance, technically challenging parts that require demanding consistency, high-quality cosmetics, and a flash-free finish. “If we feel we can do it, we’ll walk out on a limb to get it done,” he says. Or else, we suppose he’ll just build a new molding system to do it . . . you know how moldmakers are.

Contact information

Kamek Precision Tools Inc.
(514) 457-9300 | www.kamek.com

Toptech Consulting Group
(888) 658-6243 | www.toptech.qc.ca