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2marshall8

Production Efficiency Help

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I'm trying to increase my efficiency/time in production across all my molds and I know buying higher cavity molds is one way, but what are your other ways to increase efficiency? my biggest time suckers are cleaning the injector between shoots, waiting for plastics to cool before I can pull them from the mold, and re-heating plastic. 

 

thanks

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Cooling the molds faster is a fairly easy problem to solve. After diamond, silver, copper and gold, aluminium is the best conductor of heat.

You could stick the mold in front of a fan, but the speed of the unrestricted air over the mold would be fairly slow and very inefficient. I suggest a box with dimensions of 1" larger all round than your largest mold.

A wire mesh tray preferably on wheels for easy operation, this will allow cooling of ALL sides. The box and shelf designed long enough to carry the number of molds in use.

A computer extraction fan at one end to draw air over the molds. The computer fans use 1.8W whereas a stand fan uses 30W, this represents a power saving of x16.

The reduced section area as the air passes over the mold results in a high velocity and a very efficient cooling system. I built a box based on this principle for air drying pop molds, water logged wooden lures and my socks. The box was an amazing tool. If I had to put a number on your application, I would say x5 to x10 times faster.

Dave

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Assume your using a microwave if your cleaning the injector each time.... Presto pot with stirring can speed you way up.... as you leave the injector in the pot after shooting - so no cleaning/purging the leftover each time - plus once molds ready to go - no waiting to heat plastic - just shoot - makes a bit difference.

  J.

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great advice everyone. I definitely think more molds would provide the largest speed up in production from what Travis said. If I had 2 of the same mold I could shoot both at the same time, doubling my speed, the one concern for me here is when shooting single cavity molds with dual injection, I find by the time I get to the last mold the plastic has cooled to the point where if I had to shoot another 5 the plastic wouldn't be hot any longer. I usually shoot dual injector at around 299.

7 hours ago, SlowFISH said:

Assume your using a microwave if your cleaning the injector each time.... Presto pot with stirring can speed you way up.... as you leave the injector in the pot after shooting - so no cleaning/purging the leftover each time - plus once molds ready to go - no waiting to heat plastic - just shoot - makes a bit difference.

  J.

so you actually leave the injector in the hot plastic between shoots so the plastic all around it and inside the injector stays hot? am I understanding this correctly?

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14 hours ago, Apdriver said:

I have to agree with slowfish on the pots and stirrer. This will help out but after that, I would say cavity count would be the most limiting factor.

+1 - Nothing can compete with cavity count.... but if you have 1 or 2 cavity molds you wanna use - then speeding up with use of prestos is your best option - notably if your currently using a microwave.

Other small thing is clamping.... I make my own molds - and early on I cut them all different sizes and used wind nuts to hold them shut... but now I'm stuck clamping a bunch of molds separately which takes forever - instead of lining up 4-5 molds and using 2 clamps to hold them all in one shot...  it's all the little things that makes a difference.

J.

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Slowfish brings up another important point and sometimes we forget all the little things we do to get faster. Turn your molds with the injection port down so they all line up, clamp them lightly and turn them over. Push the C portion of the clamp down so they will stand and clamp more firmly. Now  you can shoot them all. Six inch clamps work well like this. I never clamp individually and when I get a new mold, all the wing nuts, screws, thumb rubbers, and such go in a drawer. This works on most of my molds except the little one cavity thin molds that are 2 inches tall because it puts your clamps too close to the edge on your taller molds. I have very few of those and steer away from them when purchasing. If you have colors that work well with multiple bait types this works well and helps produce baits faster.
 

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I have same issue to this thread which is why I am looking at presto pot method with stirrer to improve productivity. See my recent post for which the guys/gals on the forum are helping to identify which stirrer motor will work.

I also have issues with wasted time between shoots reheating and overall I also found the baits are different colors toward the last pour (tried heat stabilizer, heating slow and constant stirring, pouring at same temps etc etc)

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There are definitely some different styles here with regards to presto pots and if you should auto stir or not. Frank here as you can see just stirs occasionally, no auto stirrer, where as others construct these fancy auto stirrers. Why go through all the work on an auto stirrer if it's not needed is my question. thanks

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2Marshall8 - I freely admit that I am well beyond personal experience here, but you do not require experience to apply logic.

Plastic is an insulating material, in other words, it does not transmit heat easily through the bulk. When you switch on a Presto pot, the heating element raises the temperature of the plastic in contact with the surface of the pot that is being heated.

Because the heat transfer properties of the plastic is low, it cannot pass that heat energy to surrounding plastic fast enough and overheats, even though the surrounding plastic is cool.

Either you stand over the pot and continually stir while the plastic is being raised to operating temperature or you employ a stirrer. If you do not stir constantly then you will scorched half your plastic yellow before you even reach production temperatures.

Once the plastic is at production temperature, the thermostat will kick in and try to hold that temperature by switching the heat on and off. You still need to keep the plastic moving but not to the same extent, an occasional hand stir being sufficient.

If I were to design a pot, I would include a low audible warning when heat was being applied to the plastic as a warning to stir. Alternatively, I would have the stirrer move slow when the heating element is off and faster when heating element is on. I would include a holder on the stirrer for  the injector when not in use to avoid any fouling between stirrer and injector.

Yes, there are mechanical limitations to this idea, but none that are insurmountable, it is just a design problem, there will be solutions.

Design is ALWAYS a compromise; a mechanical stirrer for heating up and a manual stir when temperature is achieved is the accepted compromise.

Dave

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Wiring a PID into your presto pot eliminates a lot of the heating issues.  I put raw plastic in the pot, turn on the stirrer, and set the PID to 350 and let it run.  Once it hits 350 I turn the PID down to 300 - 310 and when it gets there I add my colorant and flake and shoot.

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3 hours ago, 2marshall8 said:

There are definitely some different styles here with regards to presto pots and if you should auto stir or not. Frank here as you can see just stirs occasionally, no auto stirrer, where as others construct these fancy auto stirrers. Why go through all the work on an auto stirrer if it's not needed is my question. thanks

And remember that is a 9 year old video. Things for me have changed. I have been using something I made years ago but never made a video of it. Soon I will make a video of it and you will see all that I have learned over the years from actually doing it. It’s simple to use and easy to fix if needed. And uses something about 3000 of you already have. 

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1 hour ago, Bass-Boys said:

Electric Mixer for making cakes and such ! ?

 Just redesign the beaters . if needed.

 Use on lowest speed that will mix the plastic.

I tried that, years ago, but my ex-wife got pissed.

 

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13 hours ago, bryanmc said:

Wiring a PID into your presto pot eliminates a lot of the heating issues.  I put raw plastic in the pot, turn on the stirrer, and set the PID to 350 and let it run.  Once it hits 350 I turn the PID down to 300 - 310 and when it gets there I add my colorant and flake and shoot.

+1 = I do exact same thing.... set up the pots - let them run while i get all my other crap together.  Beauty is you really don't have to pay attention cause its automated.

And to answer and earlier question.... Do you need an auto stirrer? - no - but -  Is it super convenient - yep - Save plastic as Dave mentioned - yep - Make life easier.... absolutely.  

J.

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On 1/5/2021 at 8:12 PM, Frank said:

And remember that is a 9 year old video. Things for me have changed. I have been using something I made years ago but never made a video of it. Soon I will make a video of it and you will see all that I have learned over the years from actually doing it. It’s simple to use and easy to fix if needed. And uses something about 3000 of you already have. 

Please tell, Frank.

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