Plastics News Anaheim, Calif. — Custom injection molder and assembler Pelham Plastics Inc. resolved a customer’s production problem in 2015, using a proprietary fix to satisfy the original issue and also add three more customers.
The need was to prevent marker bands from moving on a medical catheter shaft.
Pelham’s Randy Prior developed the solution within a couple of months. Prior is a project engineer with particular expertise in radio-frequency-welding technology.
Prior’s repeatable solution guarantees the exact location of the band — or bands, as needed — and fully encapsulates it within the wall thickness of the catheter shaft or sheath.
Pelham uses an RF welding system from Vante Biopharm of Tucson, Ariz., to embed, for example, a marker band of platinum iridium in a 0.184-inch outer-diameter shaft of Pebax-brand thermoplastic elastomer. That example was shown during the Feb. 6-9 UBM Advanced Manufacturing Expo in Anaheim.
Embedding the marker means nothing sharp can interfere with passing a device through or over the marker.
The Pelham, N.H..-based contract manufacturer occupies 34,000 square feet and operates seven injection molding machines: six Arburg hydraulics and one Nigata electric. Clamping forces range from 28-200 tons.
Ray Pellerin, sales manager, projected the manufacturer will increase sales during 2018 by 10-12 percent vs. last year’s performance.
Pelham Plastics employs 60-65 including two senior level tool makers.
Pelham Plastics announces it joins an elite group of only ten companies in New Hampshire who have been accepted into Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP). On June 29, 2017 OSHA region 1, Boston accepted Pelham Plastics for its exemplary injury and illness prevention program. We are very proud of this achievement and of the work that our safety team and company has completed in the past two years.
Pelham Plastics started working with WorkWise NH which operates out of Keene State College in March 2016 when they conducted an occupational health and safety survey and walk through at the Pelham facility. WorkWise NH provided free consultation on best practices and helped the company develop OSHA-compliant health and safety procedures.
Below left Wayne Hartz PhD, CSP of Keene State College presenting the SHARP plaque to Pelham Plastics President, John Mackey. Below right, Pelham Plastics Safety Team with President John Mackey and Teresa Ferrara, Industrial Hygienist, WorkWise NH.
On June 14, 2016 the FDA approved the Aspire Assist® from Aspire Bariatrics for treatment of obesity. Pelham Plastics provided development efforts for several of the component parts through the FDA approval process and continues to provide product for the Aspire Assist® .
The device drains the contents of the stomach, before entering the small intestine, through a silicone tube connected to an external port on the skin surface of the abdomen. Click the link below for details.
A supplier of precision plastics to medical device manufacturers, Pelham uses machines for injection molding.”It’s a fairly large piece of equipment,” he said, “with big motors, lots of hydraulics, and we were in the market to sell one of our old ones and replace it with a larger, more capable machine.”
The choice came down to the conventional hydraulic machines or newer all-electric models.”The seven we currently have are hydraulic machines,” said Mackey. “The all-electrics are higher-end, a little more expensive, more precise and much more energy efficient. You’d think all-electric means more electricity, but actually they use 30 to 40 percent less.”
A $20,000 rebate from Liberty made the proposition even more attractive.”We would have gotten nothing on a hydraulic machine purchase,” he said, “so even though the machine cost more money, with the rebate from Liberty that basically offset the higher cost, we are saving immediately on our monthly electric bill in the hundreds of dollars per month.”
The new machine has been in production for the past four months.
While investing in new manufacturing equipment can be a costly proposition, changes in lighting are something almost any business can do and amortize the cost through savings fairly quickly.
Pelham Plastics is soon going to replace all of its lighting throughout the 33,000-square-foot building, internal and external, with LED technology and motion detectors in office space that will shut lights off when people aren’t around.
While the initial investment is in the $65,000 to $70,000 range, the company is getting a rebate between $5,000 and $6,000 from Liberty, and expects to save more than $1,000 a month on its electric bill.
“The spreadsheet shows it will take 2 1/2 years to recover the initial investment; then it’s pure savings after that,” Mackey said.
Pelham Plastics has partnered up with Capsule Pen on it’s new pill container idea of which the Vancouver Sun Blog Network/Staff calls it “A cool little business idea: simple and sweet”. The Huffington Post calls it “The Pill Case James Bond Would Love.”
Joseph Cote invented the Capsule Pen, a pill container that arranges pills lengthwise in a tube shaped like a pen. The Capsule Pen allows you to carry your medication with you all the time, and take it on-time, every time.
While PVC has long been the material of choice for medical tubing, issues such as those focusing on the phthalate plasticizers used to make PVC flexible are causing some manufacturers to look for alternative materials. Until now the proposed replacements have failed to fully duplicate the advantages of PVC. Teknor Apex Company set out to develop Medalist MD-500 TPEs as the first fully practical alternative to PVC for tubing, providing equivalent or better performance at every stage of production and end use.
To demonstrate the capabilities of Medalist MD-500-based tubing in post-extrusion processes, Teknor Apex worked with prominent medical device manufacturers Dunn Industries, Inc., which specializes in medical tubing, and Pelham Plastics Inc., with expertise in assembly techniques.
Phase One Medical, LLC announced on March 14, 2012 that Pelham Plastics has been contracted to produce the company’s new Reversus™ Hemodialysis Catheter. Intended to provide long-term vascular access for hemodialysis treatment the Reversus™ is designed to offer high flow rates, low recirculation and no loss of performance upon reversal of the hemodialysis lines.
“We are excited to be working with Pelham Plastics to scale-up production of our hemodialysis catheter”, said Don Woods, partner Phase One Medical. “We have worked with Pelham before and it was an easy choice to go back. They offer highly trained and experienced manufacturing engineers who have historically provided high quality and reliable products at a competitive price. This also aligns with our commitment to select and work with US based manufacturing partners.”
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In a news release on February 15, 2012 from Teknor Apex, Pelham Plastics was a key provider of fabrication services in demonstrating the ease and precision with which tubing made from Medalist MD-500 series of TPE material from Teknor Apex can be fabricated in diverse post-extrusion or “downstream” processes.