Custom Foam Fabricators: What They Do and How to Select One
If you’re looking for custom foam fabricators, you may still be at the point where you’re unsure about how the process works, and what a contract manufacturer can do for you (or even how contract manufacturing works!).
Have no fear: we’re here to unpack both the process of custom foam fabrication, and the process of working with a contract manufacturer like CTI. Both can be worth your while–you just have to know that you’re working with a company you trust!
How does contract manufacturing work?
Contract manufacturing is a unique process–and it’s integral to much of the manufacturing industry. Without contract manufacturing, many of the products we rely on wouldn’t exist! However, clients often confuse contract manufacturing for other processes, which makes it more difficult for some to differentiate.
At its core, contract manufacturing, whether you’re seeking out custom foam fabricators or custom adhesive coating, is a third party manufacturing process. Typically, contract manufacturers handle the creation, assembling, and general manufacturing of a product. Though, depending on your contract, they may not handle all aspects for you.
In some cases, contract manufacturers involve themselves from the very start. They help you design a product or formula, create prototypes, and run through trial and error. Other times, clients come to contract manufacturers with a predetermined formula or design. Perhaps, they even have a specific process in mind and contract with a manufacturer to handle it for them.
Some business owners like to be more involved, providing raw materials to third parties and acting in a very hands-on manner. Others choose to step back and let the third party manufacturer handle everything for them. There’s flexibility for you–especially when you work with CTI.
What kinds of industries use third party manufacturers?
As mentioned above, many industries rely upon third party manufacturers rather than buying their own machine. Some you may recognize include:
The Pharmaceutical Industry. Needless to say, many drug companies don’t handle the manufacturing of the products themselves. Rather, they outsource to third parties, which is not only more cost efficient, but speedier. Pharmaceutical products are extremely commercial, and companies must produce them en masse. Keep in mind that compliance is extremely important in this industry, which makes outsourcing a bit more complex, but very much possible.
The HVAC Industry. We touched on the fact that manufacturing in general is quite reliant on contract manufacturing. However, the HVAC industry in particular falls back on this process. This is because we make many ventilation systems out of sheet metal, and the product of that sheet metal is more easily outsourced.
The Furniture Industry. While some companies assemble furniture themselves, they’ll outsource the production of the components–many of which we create as custom foam fabricators.
The Auto Industry: Many automakers outsource foam headliners and much more for all the parts that go into making a vehicle.
How do custom foam fabricators work?
“Foam fabrication” covers a couple different processes. One is the creation of a composite, essentially. You’re shaping and bonding together layers of pieces of foam, with the goal of creating a product that serves a specific purpose. Your project may require a specific “type” of foam product, and the only way of getting that product is customization, delivering a composite that is uniquely suited for your needs. This is why we rely so heavily on custom foam fabricators. We can’t get everything in one premade product, as it is. We must manipulate these layers or parts in order to get the right results.
The other process is a bit simpler, and involves simply cutting the foam to the necessary size. While you may not have quite as much of a need for custom foam fabricators in this case, there’s still a level of alteration required.
How does the CTI process work?
So, what happens when, after surveying custom foam fabricators, you decide to try CTI out? Our process is straightforward and easy to understand–we want to keep it as simple as possible for you!
The first step is the initial consultation. This consultation is free, and we offer it because it’s a great way for you to find out if we’re a match for you. Likewise, it helps us find out if we can serve your project to the best of our ability. We discuss your project and needs, and we ensure that both of us would be spending our time in a worthwhile manner if we partnered together.
The next stage is research and development, and it’s really exactly what it sounds like! The process depends on how set your own procedures and formula are. In some cases, we alter little and ultimately, you have control. In other cases, our capabilities may exceed what you had access to before. Thus, we’ll offer a bit more involvement and more of an overhaul.
Lab testing and samples come next. Technically, they really could occur during any point in the process. These tests and samples can greatly impact the final procedures and results. It’s a great way for us to make sure that we’re delivering exactly what you want and need.
After that, we produce a pilot run, which is basically a trial production order. Both CTI and you can take advantage of a pilot run, ensuring that everything we’ve planned comes to fruition in the best possible way. This prevents any future issues, while at the same time solidifying a timeline.
Step Five – The Grand Finale:
Once we finish that pilot run and we’ve all approved the results, we can launch into production, delivering the order you’re looking for!
Now that you know a bit more about custom foam fabricators and CTI, it’s time to take the next step. We have the solution you need. Give us a call at 419-924-5566, or contact us here. We’re ready to help from beginning to end.