August 3, 2022 | Blog

Cryogenic De-burring Machine Increases Productivity

Innovation Takes Over Cope Plastics 


Cope Plastics has one of the largest plastics fabrication equipment arrangements in the midwest, and the latest technology was recently installed in our Screw Machine Division in Genoa City, Wisconsin. Brandon Maggiore, Branch Manufacturing Manager, tells us more about how the new cryogenic de-burring machine increases both productivity and efficiency in his latest interview.  


What was the initial need for the Machine?

The process of de-burring finished parts at our Genoa City, WI location was being done by hand. Brandon Maggiore identified this process to be the biggest bottleneck at our Screw Machining facility. Each part would be de-burred by hand by three different employees. The boxes would be stacked in piles with all the parts needing to be touched by hand before sending to the customer. The addition of the cryogenic de-burring machine cut the time of this process by 440 hours in only a few months. Instead of spending hours a day de-burring, they now run the machine only once a week for approximately four hours. The employees who once de-burred parts by hand are now running this machine and have been trained to run other machines in the shop as well, thus increasing productivity immensely. Follow the link to read about another new machine, Mozie that is also working to increase productivity at Cope Plastics. 


Can you give us an overall description of what the cryogenic de-burring machine does? 

The original method of removing rough edges from plastic parts would take the employees six to ten seconds per part to accomplish by hand. Now the machine can de-burr thousands of parts at one time. The machine works by pumping nitrogen into the basket that cools the parts down to -100 to -200. Next, a media is sucked up through an auger and the burrs are blasted off the parts. This process only takes 5 to 15 minutes total depending on how many parts are in the machine. 


What are all the different applications for the machine? 

The cryogenic de-burring machine only has one job. Its sole purpose is to freeze the parts and knock off the burrs. However, every once in a while the parts do not come out completely clean and have to pass the pin hole test. If they fail the test, some parts will have to be fixed by hand. Even though it has one job, it does have four different variables and settings. These include the basket speed, the speed the media is thrown, the temperature rating (-100 to -200), and the job time (anywhere from 5-15 minutes). 


Can the machine de-burr all different types of plastic? 

The machine has a wide plastic material selection being run through it. All plastic materials Cope manufacturers run through the machine, although we are still working to perfect the de-burring of UHMW-PE because the material is rather gummy. The basket can fit thousands of pieces at a time (depending on the part size). Almost all Genoa City parts are no bigger than 2 inches. The biggest order so far has been a fifty-thousand-piece order saving $1,100 before operational costs. In only a few short months of having the machine, it has already saved a total of $7,702.60 without operational costs. Over its life-span, Cope Plastics projects huge savings in both time and money. 

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