CMT Field Notes: Chinaplas 2015

Once again the city of Guangzhou in Southern China welcomed the world of plastics professionals to its massive exhibition hall. Though the organizers of the K Fair (Messe Dusseldorf) insist they are not nervous, it appears that Chinaplas is now larger than K, at least in terms of quantity (if not quality) of exhibitors.


From our perspective, this was a successful show with visitors from all over Asia. Our agent in Taiwan/China is also the agent for Gabler. In our shared booth, the Gabler M92XL trim-in-place thermoformer with reverse stacker ran a 95mm diameter DPET cup with FLX plugs. Though the cycle time of the machine was ~35cpm, it was compromised somewhat by inconsistent air pressure throughout the show. For all the glitz and glamor that you see in modern China, you don’t have to look too hard to see less-than-perfect workmanship or inefficient logistics.

The 3 major German thermoforming OEMs all exhibited machinery: Kiefel, Illig and Gabler. Several Chinese OEMs also showed machines, several of which featured molds containing HTYAC plug assitst materials. Because the Gabler machine ran every hour, our booth was frequently packed with people. Not everyone, however, was a fully-qualified visitor. Many people stop and stare and any piece of machinery that is operational. Still, for those who were qualified machine buyers, they all stopped to talk about tooling and plugs with CMT staff. In addition to the ubiquitous, “What is the best plug materialf for [insert plastic sheet type here],” we had many good conversations about best practices for getting the best surface finish on plugs. We also had high levels of interest in C1R for enhanced clarity of PP forming. In particular, our new HD HYTAC video (Mandarin version here!) was very well-received by those who spent a few minutes with it.

No trip to China would be complete without a large, complex, communal meal. For a big group of Germans, Dutch, Taiwanese, Chinese and Americans, the local restaurants bring out an army of staff, but it’s those at the table who get a solid workout with the massive Lazy Susan wheel. Add in the dexterity required to snag curried peanuts with chopsticks while the table is moving and you have a recipe for a wonderful meal!


Chinaplas 2016 will be back in Shanghai next year. Let’s see what records might be broken in the same year as the next K Fair…