ITAR-certified-molding-companiesWith the growth of the global economy, it can be appealing to decide to manufacture your silicone rubber components overseas. There are many factors that can be overlooked when  variables include manufacturing and labor standards, turnaround and shipping times, quality of material used, intellectual property rights protection and, most importantly for military applications, which items need ITAR registration.
ITAR Certified Rubber Molding Components
ITAR stands for International Traffic in Arms Regulations; The Department of State Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) interprets and enforces ITAR. It is a set of U.S. government regulations to control the import and export of defense-related articles and services on the United State Munitions List (USML). Its main goal is to protect U.S. national security and further U.S. foreign policy objectives. One of the many ways it does this is by requiring all manufacturers and suppliers of military components to register with the DDTC. In addition to registration, companies are required to keep all records pertaining to ITAR-related components for future audits.
Counterfeiting Overseas
In recent years, many cases of foreign counterfeit components have infiltrated the market into sensitive military equipment. There are a number of ways this happens, including purchasing products from domestic companies which sub-out the work to foreign companies. They sometimes mislead or imply that they make the products in the U.S. The responsibility for counterfeiting most often lies within unauthorized U.S. suppliers, distributors and other mid-tier suppliers who fail to properly vet the origins of the products being produced. Many agencies are reporting that these counterfeit or unknown origin parts are driving up defense costs and compromising safety and national security.
Poor quality is also a major problem when purchasing from overseas companies. Many U.S. companies are finding that the incentives for going overseas are being overshadowed by the poor quality materials used and lack of oversight and quality control. Many overseas companies add fillers into the silicone to increase their profits. With little enforcement in place, your intellectual property rights are almost impossible to protect and enforce overseas. Shipping can also become a major concern for multiple reasons. Delivery from factory to port, port fees on both ends, customs in the U.S. and delivery from port to factory in the U.S. can drastically diminish any cost savings from having product manufactured overseas.
The best way to avoid these cumbersome issues is to buy from a reputable domestic manufacturer. SiTECH has been in the silicone rubber business over 15 years. We are an ITAR certified rubber molding manufacturer and make custom silicone molding components for many applications including, but not limited to, the military. We only use Dow and GE silicones. We also offer value added services to streamline your project. All parts and components are custom made in-house. If you have questions or concerns over how to make the production process of your product or design run smoothly, our SiTECH staff can help you with our experience in silicone products of more than 40 years.