I hate to admit it, but last week was my first trip to the Annual Mike Koebel Moldmakers Trade Fair in Pomona, Calif., and shame on me because what a nice, solid group of industryfolk who continue to support this local event. It was nice to witness the mold building community out on the West Coast.
The event consisted of a loyal group of 129 western moldmakers, molders and OEMs, and 22 exhibitors--from mold material and component/hot runner suppliers to tax consultants and local educational centers--gathering for a casual evening networking reception amidst a room of technology suppliers showing their wares. The big draw was an amazing litany of raffle prizes before everyone retired for the night.
Some first time and veteran participants shared their feedback. Wayne Sikorcin of Craftsman Tool & Mold, a manufacturer of large, high volume, close tolerance custom mold bases, said that being from the mid-west they don't get out often enough to see their colleagues, customers and friends in a social atmosphere, and this trade fair was a great opportunity to do just that.
Gabriel Suppes of Purple Platypus, a 3D printing service bureau, had hopes to educate and make mold builders more aware of their AM technology, and he believed they accomplished that while increasing their visibility with this core group.
And Donna Pursell, CEO of Prestige Mold Inc., a mold manufacturer in Rancho Cucamonga was "happy to see that with the support of SPI and all of our moldmaking suppliers the Moldmakers Trade Fair has continued to bring together all of our colleagues for 23 years. It was another great event and what a tribute to Mike Koebel! "
I can see this event only continuing to grow--especially with the enthusiasm and commitment of Jill Brandts, director of member relations and grassroots advocacy for the SPI, who manages the Trade Fair--and I hope MMT is part of that. I'm looking forward to next year.