Erik E. Erikson - Hall of Fame Entry
Author: Plastics Academy Staff
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Erik E. Erikson
An important figure in automotive plastics, Erik Erikson founded Detroit Plastic Products in 1949. He pioneered the conversion to plastics of components such as pillar garnish mouldings and heater and air conditioning louvers.
Under his direction, DPP pioneered the conversion to plastics of components such as pillar garnish moldings and heater and air conditioning louvers. His company also was important as a custom injection molder of toys and housewares and as a blow molder of bottles for consumer packaging.
Erikson is credited with tooling and processing techniques that made possible great precision in complex multicavity moldings before the introduction of computerized controls. The benefit for automakers took the form of part consolidation and other economies. The die-cast louver for a 1960s-model Dodge Dart, for example, cost $12; the molded part from DPP cost $2.
DPP also specialized in molding scale-model cars and model kits. After selling DPP in 1977, Erikson joined a competitor in this area. Shortly before his death, he was working on the new process of gas-assist injection molding.
An early activist in SPE, Erikson received SPE's Outstanding Member award in 1976. He also received an award from the Michigan Department of Labor for DPP's initiative to design and install machinery guards at a time when molding machine builders did not provide them.
Born in Sweden, Erikson came to the United States in 1931. In World War II, he served with the U.S. Army in Europe. After the war he received an engineering degree from Wayne State University.
He is survived by his wife Patricia and four children.