Reinfro Uses Latest Finishing Technology To Grow

Texas-basd Reinfro was recently ranked on the list of Inc. magazines fastest growing companies


Reinfro in Brownsville, Texas was started as part of a larger industrial group more than 25 years ago, primarily to serve its corporate counterparts in the automotive manufacturing industry.

Now an independent operation, Reinfro has established itself as one of the top metal finishing operations, with two plants in Sendero, Mexico and another in Ciudad Industrial, also in Mexico.

In fact, Reinfro was recently ranked on the list of Inc. magazines fastest growing companies among 5,000 listed.

The company provides acid zinc rack and barrel (clear, blue, yellow and black), alkaline zinc rack (clear, blue, yellow and black), zinc iron rack and barrel (clear and black), zinc nickel rack and barrel (iridescent, silver and black), tin (bright and matte) rack and barrel, nickel (Watts, sulfamate and electroless) rack and barrel, copper rack and barrel and copper nickel rack and barrel, in addition to electrocoating, zinc flake coatings (dip/spin, dip/drain, spray) and liquid paint.

Much of that success is attributable to the purchase and success of new equipment and technology and its plants, said Raul Gonzalez, Reinfro’s Vice President.

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“This new equipment helps us be more efficient by having better repeatability in our process,” Gonzalez said. “Before automating our processes. We invested heavily in our process control systems and in software that can help us to manage the large number of data generated by our lab.”

I just the last three years, Reinfro has purchased and installed:

  • Automatic 2 hoist Barrel Heavy Zinc and Ca/Mod Zinc Phosphate plating line
  • Automatic 2 hoist Barrel Alkaline Zinc/Nickel plating line
  • Automatic 4 hoist Rack Alkaline Zinc - Alkaline Zinc/Nickel plating line
  • Automatic 3 hoist Rack Acid Zinc Plating Line
  • 3 spray coating liquid paint booths
  • Dip/Spin coating line with belt oven
  • New rectifiers
  • New ovens
  • Pilot Plating line for laboratory
  • 2 XRF measurement devices
  • 1 carbonate removal system
  • 1 Atomic Absorption Spectrometer
  • New 250 GPM Waste WaterTreatment Plant
  • Software package for chemical process control.
  • New ERP/MRP software package (ongoing implementation)

We transitioned from adding chemicals by agenda — or because it worked — to adding by an analytical method,” Gonzalez said. “This decreased the variation as well as allowed us to increase the frequency of our tests.  Once we got to this point we started investing heavily in process automation and the result has been amazing.”

Reinfro’s internal reject rate is down, their productivity is up and their costs are down.

“These three factors help us to be very competitive in the market and back it up with great quality and excellent turnaround times,” he said.

Reinfro maintains a preventive maintenance plan at each plant, as well as having an in-house equipment design team that is constantly updating our existing equipment. Gonzalez said that company management is always looking to get better, whether it is a new automation system or adapting new technologies available in the marketplace to assure that they are always using and implementing the newest technology available.

Reinfro has just 24 customers that it coats for, but yet it coats over 150 million parts each year, or roughly 30,000 parts per hour.

The main challenges to running such a high volume finishing operations, Gonzalez said, is first and foremost that the production process and equipment design is done correctly.

“If the engineering is right, then having a great preventive maintenance program coupled with a very good process control system is key,” he said.

Reinfro firmly believe that their main strength is their employees, and they have set up an internal surface finishing academy where all Reinfro employees take a mandatory in-house course on the basics of finishing technologies.

“Coupled with having the right equipment to do the necessary tests helps us stay up to date in the way we control our process or react to any condition we detect in the process,” Gonzales said.

 

Reinfro

3320 East 14th Street

Brownsville, TX 78521

956-267-9700

Coatplate.com

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