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News

Clear plastic case lets pen manufacturer rule out retail theft

Eastman Chemical Company : 08 July, 2002  (Application Story)
Sanford Argentina, the Latin America manufacturer of Waterman, Parker and PaperMate pens, has devised a clever means of thwarting any attempt to steal Parker pens without attracting the immediate attention of store security.
Many people take great pride in owning a fine writing instrument such as a Waterman or Parker Pen. Unfortunately, however, the high quality and excellent reputation of these pens also make them attractive targets for retail theft.

Fortunately, Sanford Argentina, the Latin America manufacturer of Waterman, Parker and PaperMate pens, has devised a clever means of thwarting any attempt to steal Parker pens without attracting the immediate attention of store security. The pens are displayed in a clear plastic security case that cannot be opened without setting off an alarm unless it has been deactivated using a special magnet. The case is moulded using Eastman Chemical Company’s Eastar copolyester, which was selected because it has excellent clarity, yet is tough and strong enough to resist breaking.”

“The case is moulded in two sections, a base and a lid,” explains Matias Caride, Sanford Argentina brand manager. “The lock button cannot be removed without the magnet, and the alarm cannot be removed with the pin in place. If a shoplifter tries to open the case, the alarm instantly alerts store security. Also if an attempt is made to take the entire display case, the alarm sounds when the shoplifter tries to leave the store.”

Sanford Argentina tested a number of different plastics for this application, including modified polystyrene (PS), ABS, SAN and different combinations such as PS+SAN and PS+K resins.

Of all the resins tested, however, Eastar copolyester offered the best performance. “One of our tests involved holding the assembled case by its ends and trying to break the lid by twisting it,” notes Caride. “Eastar copolyester definitely had the best resistance to torsion.”

The copolyester is well suited for this type of application, according to Scott Rook, Eastman business manager for the pens/stationery market. “It has much better clarity than PVC and is as tough as polycarbonate but much less expensive,” Rook explains.“ It can also take rough handling without scratching or marring and has excellent resistance to a wide variety of chemicals. And because of its outstanding balance of properties, it is used in a wide variety of applications ranging from break resistant pharmaceutical containers to lenticular film that makes 3D graphic images appear to move when viewed from different angles.
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