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Breaking the boundaries of toolmaking and plastic injection moulding

In this issue of Industrial Process News, we are pleased to announce Dudley Associates Ltd as our Toolmaking and Plastic Injection Moulding Company of the Month.

Dudley Associates was founded in 1990 and is the UK’s leading precision toolmaking and plastic injection moulding specialist. Its industry leading services are backed by ISO 9001 Quality Management certification and with a commitment to offer only British quality workmanship coupled with a friendly and approachable service.

Following a management buy-out in 2014, Dudley Associates has implemented a £1.7 million investment in modern, efficient equipment to better support its operations and service to its customers. Currently owned and managed by John Churchard and Andrew McIntyre, Dudley Associates is headquartered in Lutterworth, East Midlands.

Operating across a variety of sectors such as automotive, aerospace, defence, electronics, industrial, household/leisure, medical/dental, oil and gas, safety equipment, and scientific, Dudley Associates provides innovative solutions and volume production for all your plastic moulding and toolmaking requirements.

“We have two over-lapping business units: Toolmaking and Injection-moulding production. Our fully equipped toolroom manufactures bespoke injection-mould tooling. We cover rapid prototyping through to production tooling in aluminium or steel depending on the anticipated production requirements. We have modern moulding machines, ranging from 35-300 tonnes. We also manufacture in a vast array of different polymer materials including filled and unfilled ABS, acetals, acrylics, nylons, polycarbonates, polypropylenes, peek and ultems. Furthermore, we also use some highly specialist materials with ‘extreme’ attributes in relation to flame retardancy, electro-conductivity or operational temperature ranges,” stated Andrew.

Dudley Associates is proud to provide its customers with over 30 years of specialist experience in overmoulding. The process of overmoulding is unique and results in a seamless combination of multiple materials into a single part or product. Typically, this is either plastic on metal or plastic on plastic. “We are experts in over-moulding and perform this for a number of clients across different sectors,” said Andrew. Some further services include the operation of a Class 8 Clean Room, and additional add-on services such as additives along with inserting, printing, ultrasonic welding, drilling & tapping, packaging and CNC machining.

“We aim to be a one-stop-shop covering everything from optimising the original design, making the tooling and progressing through to production of bespoke injection-moulded components. A great advantage of our service is that both our toolmaking and injection moulding production are both done in-house meaning we can sample new tools very quickly and remove any grey areas of dispute between the toolmaker and the moulder. We are also very flexible when it comes to production. Our clients’ requirements vary so we can manufacture from very low quantities to large volume production runs and using a vast array of different polymer materials,” explained Andrew.

With the recent addition of Jacob Taylor, who has joined the business to drive sales and marketing activities, Dudley Associates is pushing forward. Andrew commented, “Through the process of building back up over the past eighteen months and the ensuing supply chain difficulties, we became much more efficient. We are a well-established, focussed, business with an experienced and loyal workforce who take pride in what we do. Everything we do is bespoke to a client’s specific needs and we do not outsource overseas.”

In closing, we asked Andrew what the company’s future plans were, he responded, “Our aim is to expand our production volumes, further utilising current available capacity. We believe we are in a good position for businesses looking to re-shore their injection-moulding requirements and shorten/de-risk the supply chain.”

T 01455 558825