Based in Jasper, TN with another processing plant in Garfield, NJ, O’Neil Color & Compounding produces high-performance custom compounds for anti-static, flame retardant, ESD, structural, wear resistant and TPE materials for a wide variety of applications. A recent challenge of theirs involved producing TPE materials for automotive applications – and they brought their challenge to ENTEK.
A Challenging Compound – A Great Lab Trial
The challenge O’Neil faces with TPE compounding, said company President Mark Bruner, is that they are often trying to combine very dissimilar materials that have different melt flows along with high loadings of oil. “The real challenge is to get a thoroughly compounded product at acceptable run rates,” he said.
After initially contacting ENTEK to inquire about the company’s twin-screw extruders, Bruner and Bob Anthony, O’Neil’s Plant Manager, visited ENTEK in Oregon to run a lab trial. “They brought one of their most challenging products to see for themselves if the ENTEK machine could handle it,” said Bill Petrozelli, ENTEK Regional Sales Manager. “The trial went great. Mark and Bob were impressed with the machine’s performance, and also liked the fact that our machines are made in the USA.”
O’Neil placed an order for an ENTEK 53mm twin-screw extruder, which featured a long L/D and intensive mixing screw design. After installation and start-up in the company’s Jasper, TN plant, the machine has been successfully producing high volumes of both color concentrates and TPE’s.
“The ENTEK machine is very effective because it compounds well at run rates that we would expect to see in a much larger line,” said Bob Anthony. “ENTEK was very helpful in bringing us the latest in twin-screw technology as well as helping us design the best screw for the application.”
While O’Neil has several twin-screw extruders at its facilities, only the ENTEK Extruder can run certain TPE’s and specialty products. O’Neil enjoys the easy-to-use touchscreen PLC, ease of operation, and size vs. rate performance they get from the 53mm twin-screw extruder.
“We are more than pleased with the performance,” said Bob Anthony. “From the initial trial to installation and start-up, we have run problem-free. The ENTEK staff during the trial and installation was very knowledgeable and helpful. And sales support after installation was right on target and has been there to answer any questions we have.”
(published in April 2012 Extrusion Solutions Newsletter)