Jay Moulding
A Cohoes Company Whose Products Travel the World

Jay Moulding Corporation (JMC) was started in 1955 at 7 Bridge Avenue in Cohoes, when Jack Weinberg took over a pen factory and transformed it into a plastic factory. The factory started with one press. In 1956, Jack's brother Simon joined him and in 1957, his other brother, Abraham, also came into the company. They were pioneers and experts in the field of thermoset plastic compression molding and thermoplastic injection molding. The brothers ran the company together, manufacturing lampshades, bases and lanterns for the Navy's ships, and other products as well.

Jack Weinberg passed away in 1984, leaving the business to his brothers Abe and Si. In 1993, the business was purchased by Richard Smagala, who is a plastics engineer with 40 years of experience. Some of the factory staff have been with the company for over 20 years, and it has several second-generation employees.

JMC enjoys 50 years of respected reputation in the plastic molding industry. The company is well-known for its service-oriented, custom molding operation, and specialization in small-quantity, high quality products with fast turn-around production times. JMC continues to specialize in both thermoset compression and transfer molding and thermoplastic injection molding. Thermoplastic materials are "prereacted" resins that can be melted and reused. Injection molding makes use of this characteristic to form intricate thin-walled parts using relatively expensive engineered materials. Thermoset plastics are compounds that are chemically set with the application of heat and pressure. They are stable under heat and flame, and resist deformation, characteristics not matched by thermoplastics.

Jay Moulding's customer base has included contracts from the military for door handles on the "Humvee", telephone handsets, lamp holders, running lights for vessels, emergency and portable battery operated lanterns, as well as many other items used worldwide by the armed services. Among the items produced for the U.S. Navy is a portable lantern for use on ships, submarines, and over surgical tables. The lantern, called a Battle Lantern, can stay lit under water, and provides reliable and watertight emergency light for shipbuilders, contractors, emergency workers, heavy construction, industrial maintenance operations, and for ships under sail.

Jay Moulding has received citations for service from the Department of Defense during Desert Storm for providing Battle Lanterns on time during a period of urgent need. With the current conflict, JMC is shipping its products directly to an Air Force base in California to be airlifted to ships off the coast of Iraq. Both the USS Cole and USS Kitty Hawk have been refitted with Jay Moulding's products. Items made by this Cohoes company do indeed travel the world.

Many thanks to Christy Smagala for contributing this article.

Winter 2003

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