Company Profile

The Company

Founded in 1958 by the present chairman, a chemical engineer, as a precision engineering and engine reconditioning workshop. A hard chrome plating plant was added shortly thereafter, specializing in the chroming of crankshaft journals. Located in Virginia, a gold mining town in the heart of the Free State goldfields of South Africa. Originally registered as Virginia Engineering Services (Pty) Ltd, abbreviated as Vesco, hence the name VescoPlastics for the engineering plastics division started in 1968 to complement the company's engineering activities. VescoPlastics is the oldest operating manufacturer of engineering plastics materials in Africa.

The development of Vesconite started in 1968 in an attempt to find a bearing material suitable for use in the surrounding ultra deep mines - mines that extract gold up to 3.5 km (2.2 miles) below the surface, with exceptionally harsh conditions.

First exports started to Finland in 1975. The first use of Vesconite in marine applications was with the harbor pilot vessel, RP Jackson in Durban in 1977.

The Johannesburg Sales Office acquired its own premises in 1980 to service the main industrial region of South Africa more directly.

Today the factory is established over 9 industrial sites in Virginia, covering over 10,000 m (110,000 ft) of workshops on 35,000 m (375,000 ft) of ground.

The Organization

Both the present chairman and managing director are qualified chemical engineers, with the emphasis throughout the organization on personnel with technical qualifications in mechanical engineering. Some 60 persons are employed in the company.

Facilities

The company is highly integrated and includes the following departments most of which occupy their own individual sites:

  • Compounding and production of own raw materials
  • Extrusion of rods, bushings, and plates
  • Injection Molding up to 3000 grams (106 oz), mainly of parts for final machining
  • Machine Shop for finishing up to 800 mm (31.5")
  • Stores and warehouses
  • Construction of own processing machinery
  • Laboratories for development and quality testing
  • Direct mail and promotions
  • Customer Service and Internal Sales
  • Administration and Accounts
  • Johannesburg Sales Office

Production Range

The compounding, extrusion molding, injection molding and machining of Vesconite and Vesconite Hilube make up most of the production.

  • Solid rods are produced from 8 to 180 mm (0.31" to 7") diameter.
  • Bushing is made from 35 to 715 mm (1.4" to 28") diameter in lengths up to 3m (10').
  • Plates are made from 3 mm (0.12") thickness up to 50 mm (2"), in widths up to 600 mm (23.6") and lengths up to 3m (10').

A wide range of standard ready-to-use bushes is also made, while a great variety of custom made finished components are machined from stock and molded shapes.

Vesconite Hilube was introduced in the late 1980's. It is a further enhancement of the self lubricating properties of Vesconite. Vesconite Hilube is an extra low wear and low friction premium grade.

VescoPolycap, Vescolene PE and Vescolene PP are produced as extruded rods, as well as molded and machined.

Other high performance bearing materials such as Hilube 10, Hilube 20 and Vescoflex are also compounded and molded for special applications.

Applications

VescoPlastics specializes in polymeric materials for bearing applications produced in heavy sections. These materials are designed for many applications where relatively high loads are carried at relatively low speeds, with little or no lubrication, in often dirty or immersed conditions. Custom components include small and large bushes, wear pads and strips, and many parts subject to friction and wear, in many industries including railways, shipping, heavy transport, earth moving, mining, and manufacturing.

In summary, VescoPlastics' special formulations and custom components find application in any industry with moving parts where there is a desire for longer life wear parts with the added benefits of less greasing and less maintenance.

Foreign Associations

VescoPlastics has exported its products for over 25 years and the Vesconite trademark has been registered in most parts of the industrialized world, including the United States.

The company also has distributors in Argentina, France, Finland, Greece, Namibia, New Zealand, Zambia and Zimbabwe

Distribution and Marketing Policy

The specialized nature of the product range requires that it should be sold on the basis of its cost effectiveness in particular applications. Thus a well informed technical approach, related to the needs of a particular client or market, is generally required for success. This is a general requirement for selling high performance materials. The management devotes much of its time to the study and proposed solutions of such needs.

The education of the market and the solution of technical problems in as cost effective a manner as possible have been basic to the growth and success of the company. Coupled with this is an emphasis on client service and fulfilling promised deliveries.

Promotion

Promotion by means of the Internet and direct mail aims to inform the engineering and designer community and to encourage enquiries. Such enquiries are carefully studied, recommendations made and prototype trials initiated when the application and the economics appear promising. Use is also made of advertising and editorial engineering publications with a high readership of design engineers.

Material Advantages

Vesconite and Vesconite Hilube can claim after over 30 years of extensive usage to offer one of the best all round non-metallic bush and bearing materials, readily available, made of the only modified polymers of their kind, which combine low friction, low wear, self lubrication, good dimensional stability, very low water absorption, suitability for both dry and immersed applications, good load carrying ability, easy machining - all at greater cost effectiveness than traditional bearing metals.

Production Advantages

VescoPlastics is possibly the only company in the production of engineering plastic materials and finished components which also formulates, develops, compounds and produces its own raw materials.

This results in an intimate knowledge of its products and their capabilities and an ability of offer more cost effective solutions. Where an application is of sufficient scope, and requires a bearing material with special characteristics, VescoPlastics will consider the development of a custom formulation.

Company Advantages

VescoPlastics' main focus on engineering plastic applications as related to friction and wear problems gives it a great deal of effectiveness in solving existing problems and developing new applications.

Its technical approach is less concerned with possible short term returns than with the need to satisfy the long term needs of its clients through a cost effective answer to their problems - by providing components and materials that last longer, with little or no greasing.

Phone: 1-888-359-9730 | Email: info@xpcbearings.com

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