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King Machine acquires FormUp 350 from AddUp for tire molds

The world’s fastest tire mold manufacturer reshored production through vertical integration via metal AM

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King Machine, “the world’s fastest tire mold manufacturer”, has installed an AddUp FormUp 350 Powder Bed Fusion (PBF) machine from AddUp. With over 70 years of expertise in tire mold manufacturing and 12 strategic locations, King Machine is (finally) enhancing its product quality and manufacturing efficiency by adopting additive manufacturing technology.

King Machine is the largest independent tire mold company in North America with all mold manufacturing conducted at their advanced manufacturing facility in Charlotte, NC, complemented by 11 additional locations dedicated to mold repair and servicing. Their presence across North America allows them to serve their expansive network of tire OEMs efficiently, ensuring prompt response times and timely support for their customers.

King Machine acquires FormUp 350 from AddUp for tire molds reshoring production through vertical integration via metal AM

King Machine acquires FormUp 350 from AddUp for tire molds reshoring production through vertical integration via metal AM King Machine’s mold making

Recognizing the potential of additive manufacturing, King Machine has embarked on a journey to integrate this innovative technology into the production of tire molds. By utilizing AddUp’s additive technology, King Machine has achieved an unprecedented level of precision and quality in their tire sipes which was not possible using the manufacturing technologies currently in use.

Previously, the manufacturing of the tire sipe mold component was outsourced overseas, leading to supply chain inefficiencies and high costs for King Machine. To address these issues and remain competitive in the U.S. market, vertical integration was a necessary step. By bringing the manufacturing process in-house with additive technology, King Machine has improved profitability, enhanced sustainability, and elevated their capabilities, enabling customers to set a new standard in quality and performance in servicing their clients.

This strategic move also aligns with King Machine’s commitment to proactive tire sipe and mold development, in collaboration with their top customers.

King Machine acquires FormUp 350 from AddUp for tire molds reshoring production through vertical integration via metal AM FormUp 350 installed at King Machine

The decision to select the AddUp FormUp 350 platform was driven by its proven success in the tire industry. The FormUp 350 is currently employed for the serial production of tire sipes, demonstrating its reliability and efficiency in an industrial manufacturing environment. The machine’s higher throughput and lower total cost of ownership were significant factors in the decision. Its 350 mm platform, 4-laser system results in substantial operational cost savings through reduced labor, fewer post-processing steps, and faster machine turnover.

“We chose the AddUp FormUp 350 because of its exceptional performance and cost efficiency,” explained King Machine’s CEO Michael Wells. “This machine not only meets our high-quality standards but also enhances our operational capabilities, ensuring we remain at the forefront of the tire mold manufacturing industry.”

King Machine takes pride in being a US company with 100% domestically built products. The addition of the FormUp 350 PBF machine to their 80,000-square-foot facility represents a significant investment in advanced manufacturing technologies. As part of their ongoing expansion, they continue to leverage their 70 years of mold manufacturing expertise to serve markets in addition to the tire industry.

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