MoldMaking Technology

OCT 2018

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Page 16 of 51 15 Clint joined Ameritech Die & Mold (Ameritech) through the Apprenticeship 2000 program in 2014 while starting his senior year of high school. He just graduated with an associate of applied science degree in mechatronics technology and will receive his journeyman's certificate. Clint started in the small components department using the manual lathe, Bridgeport and surface grinders to manufacture ejector pins and small injection mold components. Typically, apprentices spend the first year in this area before moving onto the 2D, CNC machining department. However, because of his level of maturity, stellar work ethic and methodical questions, the company presented Clint with a unique career opportunity. Clint happily accepted and was eager to begin immediately. After only two months, he moved to fill a need in the EDM department, which consisted of a CAD/CAM workstation for designing and programming electrodes, a CNC graphite mill equipped with a robot capable of holding 144 electrodes and two sinker EDM machines fed by a single robot capable of holding 180 electrodes. By the end of the first week, he was mounting electrodes, loading them in the graphite mill robot, checking and changing out necessary tooling and loading preprogrammed tool paths in the machine so that the graphite mill would machine unattended. Within a few months, Clint was able to inspect the electrodes, load them into the EDM cell robot and set up the EDM machines to run unattended on his own. Next, he learned to use CAD/CAM software to model and program electrodes. By the end of his first year, he was trained and capable of performing all tasks in the EDM department. Clint now runs the EDM department and is currently training a second-year apprentice to take over his position so he can continue to move and grow within the company. Clint has learned all aspects of moldmaking. His character, ambition and work ethic make him a very important part of the team. He broke the boundaries at a very young age and has set an example for future Ameritech apprentices by showing them that anything is possible. Clint Seeley (21) EDM Operator Ameritech Die & Mold (Mooresville, North Carolina) Rebecca is exactly what the tool and die industry needs. As a high school senior, she already had all the technical education classes under her belt, solidified her welding skills and held a part-time job at a local metal fabricator running a brake press. Rebecca also wanted to become an engineer, so she took some college courses. At Mantz Automation (Mantz), she did mold teardowns for maintenance and repair for a few months. She also worked with toolmakers to pound out inserts, ground pins and make slide components before moving to the CNC department to set up blocks and run programs. Next came EDM, polishing and sampling. Rebecca now has a solid overview of what it takes to make a mold. It was then on to design, where her natural enthusiasm took over. Although there were struggles, Rebecca stuck with it, and today she is a solid member of the design department, designing her molds and taking a leadership role in the department helping others. She gained friends and respect. The effort Rebecca put forth and the questions she asked proved that she was serious about learning the trade. Rebecca also works with Mantz high-school and tech-school recruitment, encouraging women to enter the trades and giving shop tours to parents. Her speaking skills and enthusiastic personality make her a perfect fit for this role. Rebecca Kluever (21) Design Engineer Mantz Automation (Hartford, Wisconsin) Adam has helped Mantz Automation (Mantz) change the way its people use programming software, and his quiet and steady leadership has changed the way the company cuts steel. Leadership like that is no surprise from a U.S. Marine veteran who is now building a career in moldmaking. He is an example of a new generation of toolmakers who possesses the perfect blend of new-age thinking and old- school work ethic. Hired as a boring bar operator on second shift, Adam started to work and learn as he moved through the CNC department. His experience with boring bars and five-axis machining revealed the benefits and flaws of both old and new technologies, which he shared between departments. He then changed the way the departments worked. Adam's leadership style and personality made it all happen naturally. His calm exterior and desire to improve everything he touches have positively impacted the people around him. Although Adam writes computer code for the company's CAM system today, he always jumps in to do what is necessary. Adam Wagner (29) CNC Programmer Mantz Automation (Hartford, Wisconsin)

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