127-year-old manufacturer provides critical tooling in COVID-19 test kit production

Published
April 24,2020 - 05:45pm
Crafts Technology Inc.

Elk Grove Village, Il. - Crafts Technology Inc., specialists in designing and producing components from superhard materials for industrial equipment, is supporting the fight against COVID-19 by rush producing CraftAlloy tungsten-carbide core pin tooling to be used in the injection molding machines that manufacture vials for COVID-19 testing. This core pin tooling, being used in a re-tooled machine, will help the molder significantly increase the production of the vials.

Tungsten carbide is an extremely strong and dense material utilized for precision core pins used in injection molding systems. When creating core pins for medical applications, CraftAlloy™ tungsten carbide is the material of choice as it allows for intricate and complex forms with a tolerance of only 50 millionths of an inch. With the importance of the COVID-19 testing, medical products manufacturers that produce diagnostic items have sought to utilize CraftAlloy™ tungsten carbide core pin tooling because of its high rigidity, precision, and superior cycle time features.

In support of Tier 1 supplier Prestige Mold, the producer of the high precision injection mold tooling systems that will be used by medical diagnostic company Hologic, Crafts Technology was brought in to quickly and effectively produce the needed core pins in the shortest time frame possible. As one of only a few commercial providers in the world of tungsten carbide core pins, typical leads times run from nine to twelve weeks. Through planning by their skilled machinists and coordination across the entire company, Crafts Technology was able to produce these core pins in only three weeks.

"Never before in our lifetime have we had the opportunity to assist medical tooling and medical diagnostics companies that are at the apex of a solution more than today," said Jeff Taylor, President, and CEO. "Tooling typically has a long lead time, in some cases, up to 12 weeks. Once we knew the gravity of our core pins supporting Prestige Mold and Hologic with the development of COVID-19 test kits, we said that we would drop everything to produce these in four weeks - and we ended up doing it in three weeks. I'm extremely proud of our team's dedication to this project, taking what seemed to be impossible and making it a reality."

Upon completion of the core pins, the parts were disinfected and securely packaged to prevent any damage. Due to the urgency, the cores were driven from Elk Grove Village, IL, to Prestige Mold's location in Rancho Cucamonga, CA, to eliminate the possibility of the parts being lost or delayed.

Crafts Technology continues its dedication to supporting all medical product manufacturers and their Tier 1 suppliers in the fight against COVID-19. For projects requiring tungsten carbide cores, inserts, injectors, and other injection mold tooling, Crafts Technology will continue its commitment to expedite core pin production with a four-to-five week turnaround goal instead of the typical nine to twelve weeks.

Related Glossary Terms

  • tolerance

    tolerance

    Minimum and maximum amount a workpiece dimension is allowed to vary from a set standard and still be acceptable.

  • tungsten carbide ( WC)

    tungsten carbide ( WC)

    Intermetallic compound consisting of equal parts, by atomic weight, of tungsten and carbon. Sometimes tungsten carbide is used in reference to the cemented tungsten carbide material with cobalt added and/or with titanium carbide or tantalum carbide added. Thus, the tungsten carbide may be used to refer to pure tungsten carbide as well as co-bonded tungsten carbide, which may or may not contain added titanium carbide and/or tantalum carbide.