An interview with Guowei Plastics Mold
From left: Mr. Deng Guoqing, Mr. Wang Xianbin (Haitian Agent) and Mr. Han Zhaoyan
Product: Base station for telephone
Haitian Mars machines at Guowei Plastics Mold Workshop
Meizhou in Guangdong province is a beautiful city with green mountains and lakes. It is also the home town of many famous people, including Mr. Ye Jianyin, the famous Chinese Communist General and even Lee Kuan Yew, the first prime minister of Singapore. Guowei Plastics Molding is located exactly in the eastern area of Meizhou.
Guowei Plastics Molding is a large electronics enterprise engaged in the development and manufacture of communication equipment. The company has independent R&D and manufacturing capability for mobile communication equipment, and is now one of the biggest telephone manufactures in China, authorized to sell international mobile or telephones, including SunCorp, SGW, Guowei and Motorola. Guowei is also the supplier to many famous telephone manufacturers, including BT/SWISS Voice, Panasonic and Philips. Guowei’s products are mainly exported to developed countries in Europe and North America and therefore the requirement for quality is especially strict.
Advantage Magazine talks to Mr. Deng Guoqing, the General Manager of Guowei and Mr. Han Zhaoyan, the manager in charge of the injection molding department.
Mold design should be involved as early as possible in product design
Parts design engineers should consider the simplicity of molds as well, for instance, the size and precision of the products, the shrinkage of materials, the production process, the production capacity, painting and even the sub-assembly for electric parts, etc. If production is not involved when designing parts, then the injection molded parts later produced will not meet the expected requirements. That’s why mold design should be involved at the beginning of the design for finished products and it should comprehensively consider the function, structure, appearance and service life of each plastic part. Guowei has also set up a powerful mold team composed of 80 people responsible for mold manufacture. The new site for the Mold Department is currently under construction and is expected to be completed soon. It will have advanced equipment and talented technicians.
As with automotive vehicles, maintenance is also important for injection molding machines
Guowei currently has 109 injection molding machines, all of which are from Haitian, including electric machines from Zhafir and also some hydraulic machines of the Haitian and Tianjian brands. As we know, regular maintenance is very essential for motor vehicles and is usually performed according to the miles and days we drive the cars. Timely and appropriate maintenance is able not only to ensure safe driving but also allows drivers to enjoy the fun of driving. As with motor vehicles, the injection molding machine is also composed of thousands of parts and it sometimes even has to work non-stop for 24 hours. In light of this, maintenance is crucial when operating injection molding machines. During the production management procedure, Guowei divides maintenance for injection molding machines into three categories: daily maintenance, regular maintenance and substantial maintenance. Each type of maintenance is further divided into details, e.g. maintenance for the hydraulic lay-out, the electrical system, the mechanical system, etc. Usually, regular maintenance only takes half an hour and can be done in parallel with changing the mold, which will not take up the working hours of the machine and will enable a full utilization of the machines and further improve their efficiency.
Benefiting from such regular and careful maintenance, the injection molding machines in service at Guowei never run into sudden failure during their normal operation period.
Quality and reliability are keys for injection molding machines
Guowei had been using Japanese hydraulic machines for quite a long time but later we realized that the cost for such Japanese machines is extremely high during the later period of use, because of the lack of timely and efficient after-sales service. The machines would sometimes stop.
Guowei noticed that Haitian machines have been gaining popularity in the market since 2000 and were also technically reaching an internationally advanced level. Therefore, Guowei made a comprehensive comparison of the Haitian Mars machine, the Japanese machines that Guowei was already using and also machines of other domestic brands.
The final result shows that Haitian’s Mars machine outperforms others in terms of stability and its energy-saving performance is even more impressive. Because of the superb price/performance ratio, stability and reliability without leakage of oil, Guowei then gradually changed all its machines to Haitian machines.
Automation is the trend of the future
In the beginning stages, production at Guowei was not very efficient and most of the molded parts were supplied externally. Without direct control over production, we had a lot of problems concerning the irregularity in product quality, low production efficiency and extremely high cost. To solve such problems, Guowei introduced the automated production solution.
The advantage of automation is quite obvious and it inevitably becomes appealing to many enterprises. First of all, automation effectively solves the problem of labor force shortage because it can substantially reduce the demand for labor. Now, around one hundred machines can achieve a production capacity that previously needed to be performed by hundreds of machines and the labor force has also been reduced. Secondly, automation avoids some human factors that may interfere with the consistency of product quality. Automation improves production efficiency and quality while also reducing cost at the same time.
Guowei is very interested in the turnkey automation solution that is now available from Haitian and is looking forward to further cooperation with Haitian in a highly integrated automation system.
Professional tasks can only be performed by professionals
Benefiting from its decades of years of experience in the plastics industry, Guowei has successfully built up a solid base for machines and talented people that can cover the entire process for plastics parts manufacture, from design and mold, to manufacturing painting, etc. Guowei says with confidence: “We can do better than others while producing the same product, and if others can do it well, then we can produce at a lower cost.” With such deep resources and strong confidence, Guowei has now been developed into a leading company in local plastics processing and is able to support its customers with supplementary production of plastic parts.
One big customer of Guowei used to invest a great deal in producing plastics parts for itself. However, due to the complicated process and lack of related experience, appropriate equipment and testing technology, production by this customer was quite disappointing and the cost was too high. Then this company cooperated with Guowei and subsequently gained great success thanks to the superior product quality and lower production costs at Guowei. This customer has already launched its IPO.