Back in 2002 Benton Foundry presented in the unique problem that needed to be solved.
Little did they know that in 2014 Laurie Barcaskey would pull out those very same prints for their custom solution and develop that into the product that is today’s Boss Buddy.
For almost a century, the Hall family has been at the forefront of the iron casting industry. Starting in the 1920s with Alfred J. "AJ" Hall, and continuing with his son, Alfred B. "Fritz" Hall, who became president of Benton Foundry in 1975, transforming it from a modest operation pouring 22 tons of iron daily into a visionary enterprise. By 1990, under Fritz's son Jeff, the foundry's capacity increased to 80 tons per day.
Benton Foundry has consistently reinvested profits into capital improvements, now operating a state-of-the-art facility with a capacity of 175 tons per day, aiming for 250. Unlike other foundries, Benton has prioritized core room expansion and strategic planning over short-term gains, contributing to its unbroken record of financial growth since 1975.
Back in 2002 Laurie Barcaskey at Leading Marks developed the precursor to the today's Boss Buddy as an application solution at Benton Foundary. Traditional embossing, as was being done at Benton, required a male and female die to create the embossed effect on thin gauge materials, often resulting in tearing of the material and inconsistent quality.
Fast forward to 2014 and Laurie ran into a similar application problem as the one that she had solved over a decade prior at Benton. And that began the official creation of the Boss Buddy. The inception of the Boss Buddy stemmed from a need to overcome the challenges that Benton had experienced, and dictated introducing a new method that utilizes a female urethane mating piece instead of both dies. This innovative approach not only reduced material waste but also ensured a more consistent quality of embossed characters on metal tapes, such as the foil or stainless tapes available for use with the today's Boss Buddy.
Unlike the typical wheel system that embosses one character at a time, today's Boss Buddy employs impact presses that emboss a complete set of characters at once. This method allows for the inclusion of custom characters and longer numbers, offering a solution that is both faster and more consistent. The Boss Buddy's adaptability extends to accommodating different types of metal tapes, catering to a wider range of industry needs.
Laurie's expertise in the marking industry played a crucial role in the development of the Boss Buddy, a manual system designed to emboss foil labels used commonly for pattern ID. This system addresses the industry's challenges head-on, providing a solution that leverages traditional components to replace outdated technology. The automation aspect of the Boss Buddy Plus signifies a notable advancement in the foundry sector, where efficiency and reliability are paramount.
The continuing story of the Boss Buddy is also one of collaboration and technical support. In the fall of 2023, Jason Karcher of Benton Foundry reached out to Laurie for assistance with the some of the components on the original design solution at their plant that was not functioning optimally. Actually, it's quite a testament to a design that had been in constant service for 20 years.
According to Jason Karcher, Tooling Department Manager at Benton Foundry, "There are few options for applying traceability for certified parts so it's essential that this unit remains operational for our process and pattern labeling. The unit was not operating correctly and some band-aids were used until Laurie visited and discussed the replacement parts and shared schematics."
Laurie proposed to replace some press parts and introduce new steel type characters, along with arranging for a spare energy section for hot swaps, exemplifies the ongoing commitment to streamlining maintenance allowing a quick return to operation and customer service at Leading Marks.
Karcher continues the story. "When the parts arrived, the unit was put back into first-class operation very quickly. It was a simple repair. I spent some time pulling the machine apart. Replaced the items that have worn over the 20-ish years in service. Surprisingly it wasn’t in all that bad shape. The replacement parts fit as expected! The Machine runs well. More importantly I have a greater peace of mind knowing I have replacement parts in house in the event something breaks."
"All-in-all the process of ordering, replacing, and stocking the replacement parts/springs & do-dads went very well. I really appreciate Laurie's advice and help on this machine. Her years of knowledge and experience are unmatched. I expect it to run problem free in the back ground for some time." said Karcher.
The Boss Buddy's exemplifies how addressing specific challenges through innovation can lead to advancements that benefit the entire sector. Benton Foundry's history, marked by consistent growth and strategic investments, provides the perfect backdrop for the development of such a transformative solution. The Boss Buddy is not just a product; it's a symbol of progress in the foundry industry, showcasing how traditional processes can be reimagined for greater efficiency and reliability.
As the foundry sector continues to evolve, the Boss Buddy stands as a prime example of how innovative solutions can drive industry-wide change. Its development process, from conception to implementation, underscores the importance of expertise, collaboration, and a deep understanding of industry challenges. The success of the Boss Buddy and its impact on Benton Foundry's operations highlight the potential for similar innovations to shape the future of manufacturing and industrial processes, ensuring sustainability and growth in an ever-changing technological landscape.
Benton Foundry, nestled within 200 acres of Pennsylvania's scenic landscape, has been recognized as the "Metalcaster of the Year" by Modern Casting magazine for its significant coremaking expansion. This recent project, completing 70,000 sq. ft. of new and renovated space in fall 2022, has notably enhanced the foundry's capacity, efficiency, and job creation.
The expansion reflects Benton's long-standing philosophy of reinvestment and modernization, a practice initiated by Fritz Hall in the 1970s and continued today under the leadership of his son, Jeff Hall, the current president.
The full article provides a detailed account of Benton Foundry's strategic growth, technological advancements, and the positive impact of its recent expansion on the foundry industry and local community. For more insights into Benton Foundry's remarkable journey and its vision for the future, read the original article in Modern Casting magazine.
Read the full article here
Signage plays a crucial role in communicating and mitigating potential hazards
written by Bernard Martin
In July 2023, the Department of Labor made a significant announcement aimed at fortifying workplace safety across the nation. The unveiling of a new national emphasis program specifically targets warehouses and distribution centers, recognizing the unique challenges and potential hazards inherent in these environments. With a focus on reducing and preventing workplace hazards, this initiative underscores the government's commitment to safeguarding the well-being of employees across diverse industries.
From the OSHA News Release:
"In the past 10 years, warehousing and distribution centers have experienced tremendous growth with more than 1.9 million people employed in the industry. The Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows injury and illness rates for these establishments are higher than in private industry overall and, in some sectors, more than twice the rate of private industry.
"Our enforcement efforts are designed to do one thing: lead to permanent change in workplace safety," said Assistant Secretary for Occupational Safety and Health Doug Parker. "This emphasis program allows OSHA to direct resources to establishments where evidence shows employers must be more intentional in addressing the root causes of worker injuries and align their business practices with the goal to ensure worker health and safety."
Under this three-year emphasis program, OSHA will conduct comprehensive safety inspections focused on hazards related to powered industrial vehicle operations, material handling and storage, walking and working surfaces, means of egress and fire protection.
The Department of Labor's initiative comes as a proactive response to the evolving landscape of workplace safety. Warehouses and distribution centers, pivotal components of the supply chain, often contend with a multitude of hazards ranging from tripping and fall risks to more complex issues like equipment identification and emergency evacuation procedures.
What can you start to do right now to address this three year focus program is a comprehensive evaluation of your signage.
Key Area of Focus:
The direct part marks commonly used for product tracking and traceability in industries such as automotive, electronics, pharmaceutical, defense and aerospace are tough for conventional scanners.
Not so for the super-tough GranitTM 1920i industrial area- imaging scanner.
Part of the durable, market-proven Granit family, the Granit 1920i scanner captures virtually any direct part mark with ease, along with standard 1D and 2D barcodes on printed labels.
The secret lies in the Granit 1920i scanner’s highly innovative lighting system, which allows the imager to optimally illuminate marks of any type, on any surface.
Powered by Honeywell’s revolutionary decoding architecture, the Granit 1920i scanner provides great scanning performance to read every type of direct part mark and ensure high first-pass read rates on even the toughest marks – regardless of size, surface, marking method or contrast.
The scanner is also capable of reading standard 1D and 2D barcodes on printed labels, delivering additional value – a single scanner to address your end-to-end scanning requirements across the complete workflow, from the production line to the warehouse.
Leading Marks can supply replacement products for nearly every OEM packaging machine including Markem-Imaje®, Norwood®, Kingsley®, Jones®, Norden®, Open Date®, Rommelag®, Videojet®, Diagraph®, Linx®, Domino®, and many more.
Leading Marks can supply you brass and steel dies and Packaging Type used for coding, imprinting, labeling, embossing, and debossing. Our replacement packaging type and steel stamp dies are commonly used in cartoners, sealers, tube fillers, labelers, wrappers, thermoformers, pouchers and baggers (form/fill/seal), and imprinters for hot or cold marking of labels, tags, packages, cartons, boxes, plastic, and/or metal surfaces.
Leading Marks carries a broad based package marking product lines to solve the widest variety of packaging marking applications and has the experience needed to make the very best recommendation for your situation.
Take a look below at the wide variety of solutions!
Metal Type and Logo Dies for Package Date Coding
Thier replacement packaging type and steel stamp dies are commonly used in cartoners, sealers, tube fillers, labelers, wrappers, thermoform and imprinters for hot or cold marking of labels, tags, packages, cartons, tubes, boxes, and plastic.
Foils and Ribbons for Date Coding
Industrial Inkjet Printers for Package Date Coding & Part Marking
Hot Stamping Printers for Date Coding
We thought this would be appropriate to talk about some safety issues for using markers in the workplace. Yes, you read that right. It's not generally a topic that is at the top of your mind so it's a great time to bring it to your attention so you and your team understand how all markers are not held to the same standards.
Arro-Mark® ships its products according to the highest standards of disclosure of the hazardous materials. When compared to the competition, Arro-Mark® goes the extra mile to disclose on their packaging and labeling the information needed to keep their products usable in the workplace.
Volatile Organic Compounds
Volatile Organic Compounds (or VOC's) are materials that need to be listed cumulatively in the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) under section 9. When these materials break down, they pose health and environmental risks to air quality.
Facilities that deal with large amounts of these chemicals dedicate a lot of resources to documenting and measuring VOC's in their environment. These places deal with enormous quantities of chemicals on a daily basis. Arro-Mark's facility and the marking pens they create pose minute, and in most cases, undetectable VOC concerns. Regardless of the danger or environmental impact these fumes impose, Arro-Mark lists VOC contents of thier products.
Xylene is a bi-product of petroleum fuel production and is flammable. Alcohol has an even lower flash-point. In section 9 of Arro-Mark's Safety Data Sheets, they list the flash-points pertaining to each product mixture. When encased in their industrial quality marking pens, the markers are thoroughly protected from outside dangers.
Only prolonged exposure to direct flame will have any hope of igniting an encased marking pen. Even though these great lengths are taken to protect the contents of thier pens, the flammability needs to be disclosed and is included in all of the SDS paperwork and on their labeling.
Corrosiveness and Irritation
Xylene, MIBK, Alcohols, and some pigments and dyes are listed in thier SDS and on labelling as potential irritants to skin and corrosive to the eyes. Some dyes and pigments used in Arro-Mark's paints and inks also show an Irritant pictogram on their Safety Data Sheets. Although you may see a corrosive pictogram on some of the labeling or Safety Data Sheets, Arro-Mark guarantees that their products are not corrosive to metals.
Under general and proper use, a marking pen poses no danger in terms of corrosiveness to skin or eyes by way of splash-age or any other concern. Of course, Arro-Mark cannot guarantee the safety of products used improperly or outside the manufacturers recommended use.
Concerns when transporting or keeping paint or inks in Drums, Bottle, or Cans
Encased in a protective marking pen and confined to proper usage only, all of the above mentioned safety concerns are minimized. On the other hand, the same concerns mentioned before become exacerbated when keeping loose ink or paint in cans, bottles, and especially drums. This is because the risk of mishandling or spillage is higher.
Arro-Mark always prefers to sell their products in the form of marking pens but occasionally have orders and a need to ship our paints and inks in loose containers. Arro-Mark goes to every length necessary and beyond to ensure the safe transport and full disclosure of all handling instructions and hazardous materials concerns pertaining to each shipment.
Competitors are not held to same standards
Uni-paint is a 100% xylene paint marker but they do not list the same concerns about Xylene that Arro-Mark does, and they are able to be marketed to a wider audience because of their less "alarming" labeling. Uni-paint also doesn't go to the hazardous materials documentation lengths that Arro-Mark does.
Uni-paint are sold around the world and people assume that their marker is completely safe because of the absence of warnings. Arro-Mark's xylene paint markers pose the same risks but since Arro-Mark sells to industrial clientelle, their disclosure and display of hazard warnings are more prominent since their pens are made to be used on job site and the work-place.
Sharpie for instance, and many others contain alcohols and other chemicals that you wouldn't want to be on the skin or exposed to flame. Yet these particular markers have made it into every office, stationary store, and school in the country. They have also been AP or Art Product Certified which excuses these products from needing any hazardous warnings on the product or safety data sheets.
Pictograms and warning statements scare away customers
Arro-Mark's pens are no more dangerous or hazardous than the competition's but they remain dedicated to disclosing hazardous concerns to their full extent. It may hurt their sales by being so thorough, but they believe that the most important concern is for our customers who use their products in the workplace.
MSDS vs SDS
OSHA standardized the format, as well as simplifying the name, giving consistency with the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). GHS specifies what information should be included on the Safety Data Sheets and it's the same standard used in the European Union.
SDS is a simpler and more effective way to communicate the hazards of the chemicals used.
Essentially, they just dropped the "M"
You can learn more about SDS standards in this user-friendly 16 section format document.
- Change the perception of modern MFG careers.
- Reaffirm the United States as a leader in MFG education.
- Reinforce a higher level of technical job skills training.
Make the MFG connection! This is the place where we showcase the products that Leading Marks represents to the manufacturing workforce of tomorrow!
TWO BIG EVENTS . . .
ONE BIG CELEBRATION!
- MBA MFG DAY: Our 10th annual celebration runs from 8 a.m. to noon at the Bayfront Convention Center (BCC), where they anticipate as many as 2,000 students, counselors and educators will have the chance to see, meet and experience today’s modern, high-tech manufacturers from around the region and learn about the high-paying careers that are available.
- MBA ANNUAL EVENT: At 5 p.m. that evening, you’ll join the MBA in welcoming more than 800 business leaders, who will be attending our 118th Annual Event Cocktail Reception inside the BCC Exhibit Hall. This is an exceptional opportunity for MFG DAY attendees to meet the sponsor companies who are showcasing their innovative products and services before the 7 p.m. keynote address.
Tapmatic offers the ScribeWriter Force II for Workpiece Marking
The Tapmatic TapWriter allows you to mark your workpiece while you are machining it, without the need for a secondary marking operation.
Part numbers, serial numbers, date codes, and even logos, can easily be created with this unique dot-marking tool.
The TapWriter is easily installed on machining centers or CNC lathes with live tooling. It utilises standard engraving software, but unlike engraving, dot-peen marking does not require the use of delicate cutting tools and high-speed spindles.
You can mark soft plastics or steel as hard as 55 RC. The durable carbide stylus is thrown against the work piece that allows the marking of uneven or round surfaces.
The TapWriter is fast. Up to 80 characters per minute or more just depending on the capabilities of your machine. Dot peen marking is widely used in the aerospace industry because the cross section of the dot has gentle curves, resulting in no significant stress concentration.
With the TapWriter you have complete control of the mark. The revolutions per minute determine the dots per minute, and the velocity of the carbide stylus when it impacts the work piece.
The Key Features
Max BePOP printers utilize advanced printing technologies to deliver sharp, vibrant, and professional-quality prints. Whether it's intricate designs, text, or images, these printers ensure accurate reproduction with stunning color accuracy.
Alongside printing, Max BePOP machines excel at precise cutting. With their integrated cutting systems, these printers can effortlessly create custom-shaped labels, stickers, and signs, saving time and eliminating the need for manual cutting.
Versatility in Media Handling
Max BePOP printers are designed to handle a wide range of materials, including vinyl, adhesive films, paper, textiles, and more. This versatility allows for the creation of labels and signs for various applications, such as product labeling, retail displays, event signage, and industrial safety signs.
The accompanying software for Max BePOP printers offers an intuitive interface that simplifies the printing and cutting process. It enables users to import designs, adjust settings, and precisely position and resize graphics, ensuring seamless production and minimal wastage.
Industries and Applications
The Max BePOP printers find extensive use in the retail industry for creating eye-catching product labels, shelf tags, and promotional signage. The ability to print and cut on-demand allows for quick updates and customization to match changing marketing strategies.
Packaging and Labeling
Max BePOP printers are well-suited for packaging and labeling applications. They enable the production of high-quality product labels, barcode stickers, and packaging inserts, ensuring brand consistency and compliance with industry standards.
Manufacturing and Industrial
In the manufacturing sector, Max BePOP printers streamline the production of industrial labels and safety signs. They can swiftly create warning labels, equipment tags, and instructional signs, enhancing workplace safety and efficiency.
Events and Exhibitions
Max BePOP printers are valuable assets for event organizers, enabling the creation of banners, posters, backdrops, and signage. With quick turnarounds and precise cutting capabilities, these printers cater to the dynamic and time-sensitive nature of event promotions.
Some Application Examples
Max BePOP printers allow beverage manufacturers to produce custom labels for their bottles, showcasing branding elements, nutritional information, and regulatory details accurately. The precise cutting feature ensures labels fit perfectly, enhancing the product's overall appeal.
Retail Store Signage
Retailers can utilize Max BePOP printers to design and print vibrant window displays, hanging signs, and floor decals. The ability to cut various shapes enables the creation of attention-grabbing visual merchandising elements, attracting customers and boosting sales.
Warehouse and Logistics
Max BePOP printers find utility in the logistics industry, where labels play a crucial role in inventory management and tracking. These printers can generate barcode labels, shipping tags, and custom packaging labels, improving operational efficiency and reducing errors.
From customized product labels to vibrant retail signage, Max BePOP printers provide exceptional performance, ensuring professional results and increased operational efficiency.
Give us a call if you would like a demo!
The 1025 with the barcode scanner is highlighted on this page and will scan, process and then print specified data all from the same unit! For more information on the other options see components below. Superior scanning and printing performance wrapped up in one!
All of the functionalities of the original 1025 carry through to this model. It is the most flexible and function packed handheld printer ever brought to market. With the click of a button, the 1025 can print up to a 1″ x 3 1/2″ imprint on both absorbent and non-absorbent surfaces. 1D & 2D barcodes, graphics, logos, & alphanumerics – all accomplished in about 1 second.
This unit is perfect for logistics, repackaging & relabeling, manufacturing, parts marking, inventory management, asset tracking, warehousing, factories, supply chain & a multitude of other vertical markets and applications. Compliance has never been easier with this zero-maintenance cartridge based system and Reiner’s industry unique self-traversing printhead. Printing on a variety of sizes and shapes is effortless, add in single and multi-line imprints, ERP/Database connectivity, and up to a 1″ print height and you’ve become unstoppable.
Performing Measurements & Printing at Once
Scales are indispensable helpers where weight is relevant. This is particularly the case in labs, pharmaceutical and cosmetic companies, or food manufacturers. Small and medium-sized operations often still use elaborate and error-prone interim steps for data processing before the determined weights can be recorded on the product.
This is where marking specialist REINER® from Furtwangen in the Black Forest comes in with its newly developed accessory items for the mobile jetStamp® 1025 sense inkjet printer. The V24/RS232 sensor is connected to the marking device and then to the available scales via the reliable RS232 port.
As soon as the scales have determined the weight, the jetStamp®1025 sense will display the measuring result. This can then be integrated into a pre-set print image, among other things, right away, which is then printed to the product – permanently and smear-resistant thanks to high-quality inks. Interim steps on other devices are not needed, which reduces errors in manual or automatic data transmission and saves working time.
- Fully portable handheld inkjet printer – Thermal Inkjet (TIJ)
- Prints on absorbent and non-absorbent surfaces
- Prints single and multi-line imprints- depending on character size
- Print area up to 1″ height x 3 1/2″ length
- Adjustable font size- from 1/16″-1″
- Prints Graphics, 1D and 2D barcodes, and alphanumerics
- High Resolution 300DPI cartridge
- Connection to Windows-based programs, merchandise management systems or barcode label software
- Micro SD card data transfer and storage
- Stores up to 255 Imprints
- Lightweight: 2.1 lbs with batteries and cartridge
- ERP/database connectivity
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Network compatible
- Great for right and left-handed operators
- Ergonomic handling through multi-triggering: on the side and in the middle of the handle
- Black and Yellow Ink Options
- Unique Self-traversing printhead
- 4 Rechargeable AA Batteries
- This equipment is only compatible with PC computers. Not MAC compatible.
There are variety of authors who write the articles including marking manufacturers. You'll find a lot of technical imformation, application stories and new product releases here. Be sure and click a category below that interests you to search it.
AFS Medtalcasting Congress
Design 2 Part
Direct Part Marking (DPM)
EBS Ink Jet
HFO Demo Day
ITT Gould Pumps
Marking Indsutry Magazine
Mfg Advanced Expo
Modern Machine Shop
Pitt Chem Day
Rising Rust Belt
SDS & MSDS
TBH BF -Series
Unique Device Identification (UDI)
WBENC - Women’s Business Enterprise National Council
WBE Women’s Business Enterprise
WBE - Women’s Business Enterprise
WOSB - Women Owned Small Business