Canadian Plastics

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Dear Jim,I was just reading your commentary "View from the floor" in the August edition. Your "quick fix" methods are rather interesting for cooling and ejection problems. Although my approach has to ...

Dear Jim,

I was just reading your commentary “View from the floor” in the August edition. Your “quick fix” methods are rather interesting for cooling and ejection problems. Although my approach has to be done in the design stage, not after you run into problems, you might be interested in seeing it. Here at Fused Metals Inc., we have been vacuum brazing intricate cooling channels into mold components for about 12 years now. If a designer has the foresight to anticipate a cooling problem, or just wants to increase quality or productivity, the advantages of specifically placed water cooling channels within components can greatly reduce cycle time and ejection problems.


Grant Robinson


Dear Grant:

Thanks for your e-mail. In the mid-size four and six cavity automotive molds I referred to in the column, the molds were modified with each new model year to save tooling costs, but of course, cooling was much harder to retrofit. My “solutions” are naturally stopgap stuff, but if you’re near the end of a crucial run, on a just-in-time contract, well, you know what happens.


Jim Anderton

Readers write, continued

The Construction Boom article about the Canadian players in the wood alternatives market (August, 2001) has prompted a few other players to speak out. Here they are:

I was very interested in your story “Construction Boom” in the August issue. It was a very good and informative article. I thought that you might be interested in knowing that a Prince Edward Island company produces plastic lumber out of 100% recycled plastics.

Island Plastics Inc. has been in production for about three years now and we are very proud of the product that we produce. Our lumber will not rot, does not leach anything back into the soil, does not attract insects nor can it be weakened or destroyed by them. It is a very good lumber for patio decks, picnic tables, outdoor furniture, walkways, lobster trap sills and bows, shellfish pallets, guardrail posts, dams, and many other uses.


Kim Pickard


I enjoyed your article, “Construction Boom”, that appeared in the Aug. 2001 issue. It was very timely and relevant for me as I have just joined a small company that manufactures machinery and systems to produce composite plastic lumber. Our machinery is designed to produce large-size plastic timbers using low-quality raw materials at a fast output rate.

Yours truly,

Charlie Stanton

Superior Polymer Systems

Thanks for your insightful article on the boom in plastic/wood composites. I want to add a name to your list of “players,” and also respond to a concern raised in the article about water absorption.

Composite Building Products International Inc., of Barrie, ON, manufactures a complete decking, railing and fencing system under the name Xtendex. The Xtendex natural fibre thermoplastic composite material combines cellulose fibre, such as rice husks and flax, with virgin high-density polyethylene (HDPE). The product was developed in Canada and is currently marketed across the United States and Canada.

The Xtendex process encapsulates the fibres within the polymer, which results in a composite material that exhibits minimal water absorption. An industry-standard test which completely immerses the material in water for two hours resulted in only half a percent of water absorption by weight, and slightly more than one percent after a full 24 hours of complete immersion. This would seem to counter the contention expressed in the article that “If you have wood fibre, you will have water absorption.”

Leo Renner, manager sales & marketing

Composite Building Products International Inc. 877-728-3498


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