MADE IN NEVADA: VIP Rubber and Plastic
When you push a cart through Costco, Home Depot or most any other store, you're using a product Made in Nevada.
in Minden makes 48,000 pounds of cart bumpers every month.
"No one really sees what we run. No one would think of the bumper on the shopping cart," said VIP Rubber and Plastic Plant Manager George Phillips Junior
VIP Rubber and Plastic in Minden supplies about 90 percent of the cart bumpers purchased in the United States, George said.
They're made in a large warehouse at 2393 Heybourne Road in Minden.
The process starts with a large box filled with small plastic beads. They're vacuumed through a tube and dumped into a hopper that feeds them into a machine where they're melted down to between 280 and 450 degrees Fahrenheit. The liquid plastic is then pushed into a mold.
The mold spits out the long soft plastic bumper when it's 350 degrees Fahrenheit. It's dumped into a long trough of 55-degree water where it's cut and finally put in a shipping container, where it will wait until it's rushed to the store in need of more cart bumpers.
This isn't even the most popular product produced at VIP Rubber and Plastic. That honor belongs to a product called the window spline.
George said, holding up one of the products, "This is the line that you find inside of your screens. Your screen doors. Your windows. This is what's pressed inside. You have the frame of your screen door or window and then you have the screen itself to get the two to come together; you have a channel inside of the aluminum. This presses inside of that channel and holds them and binds them together."
What sets VIP Rubber and Plastic apart is the fact that it designs all the molds to make its parts from scratch.
Die maker Francisco Gomez makes parts on his computer. The possibilities are almost endless.
"Anything you can imagine that's flexible, rigid. Anything that is plastic... we will take on here because we are a custom house," George said.
That includes things such as dock bumpers or parts for old-fashioned cars that are no longer in production.
VIP Rubber and Plastic employs 70 people at its location in Minden. It operates 24 hours a day, five days a week.
The company plans on moving its La Habra, California facility to northern Nevada along with its 200 employees because manufacturing in Nevada is more profitable.