BARTLETT, Ill.—Rep International is adding to its latest line of G10 injection molding presses with a 300-ton press.
The firm will unveil its V510 at an open house at its headquarters in Lyon, France, on June 18. The V510 joins the 500-ton V710 model, which was introduced at K-Show in October 2013.
Rep said the V510 will progressively replace the V59 of the G9 range and will have a closing force of 250 tons.
“G10 is the next generation of Rep presses, and there has been a lot of work done to improve to product,” said Tim Graham, president of Rep Corp., the firm's U.S. subsidiary. “It's setting us up a little differently in the product range to be more competitive.”
Graham said Rep International just invested $2 million in a new machine center at its Lyon facility, geared toward reducing lead times. The firm said the unit will be operational in September and weighs more than 70 tons. It is equipped with a tool magazine that can house up to 570 cutting tools and is designed to operate loads up to five tons.
The June open house also will be a celebration of Rep's 10-year partnership with Tung Yu, with Rep serving as the Taiwanese firm's sales and service representative in the non-Asia markets, Graham said. The partnership allows Rep to sell to customers it doesn't normally sell to because Rep primarily focuses on injection molding equipment.
While Tung Yu manufactures a range of machines, Rep focuses mainly on vacuum compression presses. Graham said so far results have been strong, citing a U.S. demand for improved equipment as current products age as a primary reason. In most cases, it is less expensive to buy new than to refurbish the old one.
“The market for compression presses has done nothing but increase steadily in the 10 years that we've been involved with Tung Yu,” Graham said. “They've been a nice addition to our quiver.”
Graham said since the economic downturn of 2008-09, sales for Rep Corp. have steadily grown, but the company has more room for growth to return to pre-recession levels.
“There are a lot of machines going into Mexico, and there is still always the push to put things in eastern Europe or China,” Graham said. “That certainly has had an effect on what one would consider a good year compared to what good years used to be before the downturn.”
But Rep is active in trying to break into new markets outside of automotive, which Graham said is the firm's primary market. He said both the pharmaceutical and the oil patch markets have potential for growth.
“I think the future looks very bright,” Graham said. “Our efforts to train and emphasize what a customer can do with a piece of equipment have helped separate us from the rest of the competitors. We take the time to explain the science behind injection molding.”