CBW Automation, a supplier of automation including design and development of manufacturing cells for the in-mold labeling (IML) process, submitted the Redbox DVD Case to the In-Mold Decorating Assn.'s Annual Parts Competition. The Redbox DVD Case won the award for Best Part Design. Judges were impressed with the ease of opening the DVD Case and the exacting snap-fit that secures the product.
The In-Mold Decorating Assn. (IMDA) will present the awards to CBW and all the winners in the various categories at Pack Expo on Oct. 30 at McCormick Place in Chicago.
CBW Automation worked with Redbox and custom injection molding company Evco Plastics, to develop the automation for the new DVD case, which incorporates in-mold labeling for a striking appearance that reflects the quality of the Redbox brand. Labels for the Redbox IML application were supplied by Standard Register, a Dayton, Ohio-based specialty label manufacturer.
"We have a very dynamic environment in which to work—changing landscapes to meet regional requirements as well as marketing requirements—and needed a case to reflect our cutting edge business model," says Brad Weinshenker, director of engineering for Redbox. Besides being attractive, the DVD cases, which also hold Blu-ray Discs and video games, need to hold up well over many uses.
Evco Plastics designed and built a 2+2 stack mold for the Redbox DVD Case application that would increase the productivity by reducing cycle time. Bernie Degenhardt, automation manager at Evco, recommended CBW Automation as the automation supplier for this project. With CBW's expertise in state-of-the-art automation technology for the injection molding industry, specializing in the packaging market, the company would design and build the IML automation to produce parts with the cycle time and efficiencies that was quoted to Redbox.
That meant integrating the IML automation with the mold and molding as one continuous process. "The automation has to work within the cycle time of the mold, including picking and placing labels, removing the parts, flexing the living hinge, closing the case and putting them on a conveyor to inspect and pack into a box," explains Degenhardt. "Because we went in with a very aggressive quote, we needed automation that was top-notch. A big part of this project was the automation component. If the automation can't do what we promise it's a failure. We knew CBW could provide what we needed to make this project a success for Redbox."
The results of the collaborative efforts of Redbox, Evco Plastics and CBW Automation were truly amazing. "Using the stack mold configuration and customized, high-speed automation for the in-mold labeling operations, we were able to achieve a significantly lower cycle time," explains Gary Racine, market development leader for Evco Plastics. "In addition, the automation developed by CBW solved a number of quality issues Redbox was having by closing the polypropylene cases automatically, handing them off to the transfer unit while flexing the living hinge, then putting the cases it on the transfer unit and closing the cases."
Racine adds, "For as much as is going on in this amazingly fast IML cell, it's very smooth. CBW gave us a complex system that is seamless, smooth and simple, that starts up easily, without any glitches in the cycle."
Source: CBW Automation