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The Top 3 Considerations When Purchasing Roll Cradles for Transporting Cylindrical Products

Pyramid vs. Roll Cradle

Bolts of paper or fabric, plastic or metallic film, tubes, logs, and pipes – these are all materials that are used across the globe in a variety of industries such as construction, energy, textiles and more. They are large, heavy, and have one feature that sets them apart from other raw materials such as bricks or metal sheeting. If there is nothing there to stop them, they will roll. This makes them harder to stack, store, and transport. There are various methods for stacking and transporting cylindrical products including pyramid stacking, but the method of choice for most logistics professionals is the use of roll cradles. Roll cradles allow for higher stacking and are sturdier than pyramid stacking.

Figure 1: Pyramid Stacking

Figure 2: Roll Cradle Stacking using Roll Stop™

Choosing a supplier for your roll cradles may seem like an unimportant and arbitrary task, but all roll cradles are not made the same. Variations in materials and specifications can end up costing time, money, damaged products, and injured employees.

What to Consider When Purchasing Roll Cradles

There are three factors that every buyer should consider when choosing the best roll cradles for storing and transporting cylindrical products and materials.

Safety

First and foremost, in the mind of every buyer should be the health and safety of their co-workers and their customers. According to the Insurance Journal nearly 10% of workplace injuries are caused by falling objects. Across industries it is the 3rd most common cause of workplace injuries and costs over US$5.2 billion in direct costs to employers every year. To avoid accidents from falling or rolling products, it is critical that the roll cradle be durable and made of materials that won’t buckle or disintegrate over time. Roll cradles made of wood fibers or pulp are like paper and will begin to break down over time or when wet. This can cause the stacked cylinders to become unstable especially during transport and in rainy or humid weather, putting logistics and warehouse workers in danger. On the other hand, plastic roll cradles such as Tru-Form Plastics’ Roll Stop™ cradles can withstand up to 2400 lbs. and are not affected by weather or time. In addition, the Roll Stop uses a unique interlocking system to keep layers from sliding during packaging and stacking, making it the clear choice for safety-minded buyers.

Product Quality

Like employee safety, the safe, intact delivery of product is also important to companies everywhere. Damage to products during shipping or storage can occur when pulp-based roll cradles begin to break down over time causing damage to cylindrical products because they begin to rub together or because they are damaged in a fall if the pulp roll cradle breaks down completely. While pulp packaging is great for transporting eggs that will be consumed in a matter of days, it fails to instill confidence that it can hold heavy pipes or rolls of metal film that may be stored for long periods of time. Plastic cradles such as rPET (recycled polyethylene terephthalate) durable enough to be reliably used to transport heavy, industrial rolled products throughout a distribution network from manufacturers to distributors across the country and around the world and finally to end customers.

Environmental Considerations

Buyers often give points to pulp-based roll cradles for being environmentally friendly, and it is true that those materials can be easily broken down and recycled just like many other paper products. That being said, they are not as durable and are typically only used once before being discarded. Roll cradles made from 100% recycled polyethylene terephthalate can be used over and over again and when not in use, they can be stacked and stored to be pulled out again when needed. The Roll Stop’s unique nesting design allows for minimal storage space and less floor space than other materials such as foam.

Final Considerations

Those are the top three, but there are many other factors that influence how you store and transport cylindrical materials including total cost of ownership, purchasing relationships, and specific product needs. These must be weighed against the clear priorities of safety, product quality, and environmental responsibility. At Tru-Form Plastics, we take all of these considerations seriously and are dedicated to supplying our customers with a superior product. Since 1959, we have been supplying high quality extruded plastic products from our 100% US-based manufacturing facility. With its innovative design and durable, weatherproof construction, the Roll Stop is the best solution for stacking large cylindrical products. We invite you to reach out to us today to talk with us about your roll cradle needs.

Are you ready for a safer way to transport your roll products?

2020 Wrap Up – A Letter from the President

2020 has been a whirlwind of change, bringing communities together like never before. From production shifts to new company policies, and through tight company-wide protocols, including regular employee testing, we have been able to stay open and never closed, continuing to deliver to our clients.

COVID-19: Commitment to Staff and Our Community

From production shifts to new company policies, here is how we navigated COVID-19:

· At the height of the nationwide PPE shortage, a nurse from a local hospital called and asked us if we made face shields. Within two days, we had a prototype and shipped the final product within the week.

· Shortly thereafter we were producing 100,000 face shields per day to front-line workers and business owners seeking to keep their employees and clients safe. We also donated face shields to thousands to local California schools.

2020 Company Highlights

In addition to our COVID-19 efforts, we have accomplished quite a lot to bring a better experience to our customers.

For Our Thin-Gauge Clients:
The Sencorp Ultra Thermoforming Machine. Suited for medical device packaging, consumer electronics, personal care, engineered product blisters, trays, and clamshells.

For Thick Gauge Clients:
The Brown Machine can make large-format aerospace, automotive, and defense industry parts.

OTHER NOTABLE HIGHLIGHTS

  • Implemented a new Management Execution System to service our clients more efficiently and improve speed to market delivery on innovations.
  • Recertified as AS9100 and ISO by NSF.
  • A Surveillance Audit that noted the cleanliness of our facility and found 99.5% conforming parts.
  • At 98% or better on time delivery.

This year has been filled with a multitude of challenges and victories. Every year is different, but this one has been filled with more change than usual. What remains constant? TFP’s success is based on the strong relationships we have built over the years, and we really wouldn’t be where we are without you.

And as 2020 comes to a close, we would love to help you dream up any creations for 2021. Our doors are open for facility tours and team collaboration.

To a brighter year,
Jim Goode, President

Buena Park School District Receives Face Shields from TFP


Buena Park School District recently received a donation of 37,000 see-through face shields to protect students, teachers and staff, providing an additional barrier to slow the spread of COVID-19.

The District received the face shields from Westminster-based company Tru-Form Plastics, which is a division of American Innotek. Tru-Form Plastics Engineer Ed Hentges, a Buena Park resident and friend of Beatty Middle School Principal Erik Bagger, recommended that his company donate face shields to protect students and staff during the pandemic.

To read the full story, click here.

Tru-Form Featured in KCAL News

Tru-Form Plastics Featured on CBS News in Los Angeles

In case you missed it, Tru-Form Plastics was featured on the news! We were fortunate to share our story behind our shift during the production of plastic face shields for medical workers and staff working on the frontlines. We’re now producing over 100,000 per day, working 24-hour shifts, 6 days a week, We are excited to be ramping up production even more!

Tru-Form Plastics Goode for Smart Industry

Pivoting to Mass Produce PPE for Frontlines Medical Professionals, By Jim Goode, American Innotek

To help address the global shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) as hospitals, businesses and communities aim to protect against the continued spread of COVID-19, many companies across the country have taken tremendous initiatives to pivot their businesses to develop and produce masks and shields by the thousands. These producers range from businesses who already manufactured medical equipment (like ours) to companies whose typical function is way outside of the medical device space (like Nike).

Jim Goode, President of American Innotek

Regardless of the magnitude of new PPE producing processes, making this change requires organizational agility in order to support the production of a new product, maintain demands for typical business functions and ensure the employees needed for production are taken care of in a global pandemic. At Tru-form Plastics, we added staff to support a 6-day work week and produce more than 100,000 face shields per day. Here are some of the lessons we’ve taken from that shift.

Listen to Health Professionals

When our engineering & tooling manager, Ed Hentges, was approached to develop a PPE shortage solution, he immediately got with the director of the supply chain at a local hospital to brainstorm the face shield. Once an original prototype was designed, he went to the hospital to work directly with doctors and nurses and made adjustments until a workable solution was in place. Rather than making assumptions or waiting for delays by mailing the mask, he was able to quickly design the best solution with hands-on feedback, which allowed us to go from concept to the production line in just a few days.

Nimble Staffing Decisions

To support mass production of a new product – on top of existing manufacturing needs – it’s important to ensure flexibility in staffing decisions. For us, this included the addition of more than 60 temporary workers in our Southern California facilities. We are also fortunate to have an amazing workforce who were also willing to be flexible with their schedules as we added new shifts to allow for 24-hour production, 6 days per week. 

While it’s one thing for your business to have flexibility, it’s also essential to empower your employees to have more flexibility to meet these needs, especially in the context of a global pandemic and stay-at-home orders. Beyond asking for availability to adjust schedules for our new shifts, we are also asking employees to be away from their families, which could create challenges for parents with no school or daycare options. To address this, we established an on-site daycare that is free for our employees. Of course, this requires many best practices to ensure responsible social distancing, and the end-result is a great solution for the kids to enjoy safe, outside stimulation while parents are working. 

Prioritize Additional Work Functions

While it would be great to take an all-hands-on-deck approach to addressing PPE needs, businesses always have other responsibilities to their existing customers. Businesses can redistribute their talent in a strategic way to ensure essential priorities are still adequately staffed even though the additional production of PPE is underway. 

Our Brief Relief urine bags and Disposa-John solid waste bags remain in high demand as the military stocks up to create a safe and healthy place for people to use the bathroom as it prepares field hospitals to help with the COVID-19 outbreak. With that in mind, we’ve made every effort to ensure those lines don’t see any reduction in staffing and resources – creating quality products on every line running in the plant.

 

Jim Goode is the president of American Innotek, the parent company of Tru-Form Plastics. 

Tru-Form Plastics Now Manufacturing Face Shields

Tru-Form Plastics is pleased to put its 30+ years of plastic thermoforming experience into providing face shields to the medical industry. We collaborated with doctors and nurses to design this face shield to their specific requirements. For more information regarding face shields for medical workers, please contact us at: 714-894-5566.
Face Shield Data Sheet

COVID-19 Face Shield Datasheet

We’re Re-Certified for 2020!

Tru-Form Plastics has renewed our AS1900 Certification! The new certificate includes Medical, Automotive and Commercial products in our Scope. We’re happy to continue to provide top tier services to all customers in these respective industries.

Certificate of Registration

Tru-Form Plastics Offers Comprehensive Support for 2020 Thermoforming Projects

Engineering and design teams collaborate with clients for customized, competitive solutions.

WESTMINSTER, Calif., December 12, 2019 – As the year comes to a close, many companies are already developing product ideas for 2020 and beyond. The development phase is an ideal time for Tru-Form Plastics to engage and provide a wide range of planning assistance for all types of thermoforming projects in the medical, aerospace, consumer product, automotive and other industries.


Tru-Form Plastics takes a comprehensive approach to preproduction project planning, addressing issues with form, fit or manufacturability from the outset to make sure the end product meets the needs of the marketplace. Among the support Tru-Form Plastics provides companies at the initial stages of development include:

  • Out-of-the-Box Solutions: Tru-Form Plastics’ team of engineers work with clients to provide design advice and technical support for the most innovative solutions.
  • Tool Building: The team at Tru-Form Plastics advises clients on the best tool design for various applications as well as specific attributes like detailed or textured parts.
  • Material Selection: Tru-Form Plastics helps identify the right choice of materials for optimal function and appearance to support clients’ objectives as well as cost effectiveness.

Once a client finalizes an approach, Tru-Form Plastics offers 3D rapid prototyping to create true-to-life parts of any kind with superb accuracy. This step allows for design verification, reduces design time and avoids costly trial and error processes before manufacturing.

“As companies embark on new ideas in the New Year, we stand ready to support them with detailed planning support to take their great invention to implementation,” said Tru-Form Plastics President Jim Goode.

Located in Southern California, the company is a leader in both thin- (.012” to .085”) and heavy-gauge (.080” to .500”) thermoforming and has helped organizations of all sizes – from leading global companies to small start-ups – with design, production and assembly.

To learn more about Tru-Form Plastics, visit Tru-FormPlastics.com, call 714.894.5566 or email info@Tru-FormPlastics.com

About Tru-Form Plastics, an InterTrade Industries Company – A world-class, full-service custom thermoformer with more than 100 years of combined experience located in Southern California’s Orange County. Tru-Form Plastics’ offerings include design, rapid prototypes, production, assembly and distribution. The company is well-positioned to meet a variety of needs. The company serves a wide variety of industries including medical, aerospace and defense, automotive, consumer and OEM. To learn more, visit Tru-FormPlastics.com, call 714.894.5566 or email info@Tru-FormPlastics.com.

Creative Approach on Display at Tru-Form Plastics PACK EXPO Booth

Participants invited to ask about solutions for specific products.

WESTMINSTER, Calif., September 19, 2019 – Known for translating clients’ inspiration into reality, custom thermoforming packaging manufacturer Tru-Form Plastics is excited to share its end-to-end process with attendees at this year’s PACK EXPO September 23-25 in Las Vegas to give visitors the opportunity to explore packaging solutions for their specific products.

“With in-house design, tooling and rapid prototypes, we can work with PACK EXPO participants to take their ideas from concept to completion quickly and cost effectively,” explained Tru-Form Plastics Director of Innovation John Hoffman. “At booth N-535, we will be displaying a selection of packaging and enclosures and conducting private consultations – no appointment needed – to discuss possibilities for collaboration on current and future projects.”  

Headquartered in Southern California, Tru-Form Plastics works with leading companies in various industries, including medical, aerospace and defense, automotive and consumer. The company provides comprehensive design, production, assembly and distribution services, all in house. 

Hoffman added, “We will also showcase the capabilities of our state-of-the-art thermoforming equipment with packaged goods professionals at PACK EXPO, including our new Sencorp Ultra 2500 with an integrated robotic stacking system. This addition to our ISO 9001:2008 certified facility is just one more way we continue to distinguish ourselves as an industry leader capable of exceeding clients’ expectations.”

As a leader in both thin- (.012” to .085”) and heavy-gauge (.080” to .500”), Tru-Form Plastics’ more than 100 years of combined experience has led to:

  • Fast development of tools and prototypes to pass validation quickly
  • Capability to produce thin-gauge packaging and heavy-gauge assemblies
  • Flexibility to meet demanding schedules for samples through full production
  • Competitive pricing and economical solutions for all projects

To learn more about Tru-Form Plastics, visit Tru-FormPlastics.com, call 714.894.5566, email info@Tru-FormPlastics.com or meet them in person at booth N-535 at PACK EXPO. 

About Tru-Form Plastics, an InterTrade Industries Company – A world-class, full-service custom thermoformer with more than 100 years of combined experience located in Southern California’s Orange County, Tru-Form Plastics’ offerings include design, rapid prototypes, production, assembly and distribution. The company is well-positioned to meet a variety of needs. The company serves a wide variety of industries including medical, aerospace and defense, automotive, consumer and OEM. To learn more, visit Tru-FormPlastics.com, call 714.894.5566 or email info@Tru-FormPlastics.com.

Tru-Form Plastics to Showcase Thermoformed Packaging Solutions at PACK EXPO

Answering questions and recommending innovative packaging solutions

WESTMINSTER, Calif., September 6, 2019 – Custom thermoforming packaging manufacturer Tru-Form Plastics encourages PACK EXPO participants to visit booth N-535 to explore packaging solutions for attendees’ specific products.

“Leaving PACK EXPO knowing how and where you can create the packaging for your product is our goal. We want you to go back to the office with tangible solutions. Simply stop by our booth to talk to our team of experts so that we can help you get the answers you need and solutions,” explained Tru-Form Plastics Director of Innovation John Hoffman.

Located in Southern California, the company has helped industry leaders, small start-ups and everyone in between with design, production, assembly and distribution.  At the convention September 23-25, 2019 in Las Vegas, they are conducting private consultations for the medical and other industries, no appointment needed.  

Hoffman added, “Innovation and creative industrial design is our foundation, and we look forward to sharing our cutting-edge approach with packaged goods professionals at PACK EXPO. We continually strive to set ourselves apart in all steps of the manufacturing process to serve clients with truly custom solutions based on all parameters, users and economies of scale.”

Leveraging its creativity, flexible methods, and a collaborative approach with stakeholders, Tru-Form Plastics works as a true partner to turn clients’ visions into tangible results. As a leader in both thin- (.012” to .085”) and heavy-gauge (.080” to .500”), Tru-Form Plastics’ more than 100 years of combined experience has led to:

  • Fast development of tools and prototypes to pass validation quickly
  • Capability to produce thin-gauge packaging and heavy-gauge assemblies
  • Flexibility to meet demanding schedules for samples through full production
  • Competitive pricing and economical solutions for all projects

Tru-Form Plastics, an InterTrade Industries Company, will showcase its innovative packaging and enclosure solutions, displaying a selection of thin- and heavy-gauge options designed to meet the needs of multiple industries, including medical, aerospace and defense, automotive and consumer.

To learn more about Tru-Form Plastics, visit Tru-FormPlastics.com, call 714.894.5566, email info@Tru-FormPlastics.com or meet them in person at booth N-535 at PACK EXPO. 

About Tru-Form Plastics, an InterTrade Industries Company – A world-class, full-service custom thermoformer with more than 100 years of combined experience located in Southern California’s Orange County, Tru-Form Plastics’ offerings include design, rapid prototypes, production, assembly and distribution. The company is well-positioned to meet a variety of needs. The company serves a wide variety of industries including medical, aerospace and defense, automotive, consumer and OEM. To learn more, visit Tru-FormPlastics.com, call 714.894.5566 or email info@Tru-FormPlastics.com.

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