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Awesome Factories

Inside a Packaging Factory

Inside a Packaging Factory

Zoom in Progress takes us on a tour of a factory in Korea that produces full-color product packaging. Along the way, you’ll see their printing operations, along with their gluing, die-cutting, and box-folding machines. But the most satisfying part is when they use hand tools to remove the edge pieces from the cardboard.

Sorting Conveyor Belts

Sorting Conveyor Belts

We found ourselves hypnotized by the back-and-forth motion of this conveyor belt sorting system. Apparently, cameras or barcode scanners identify what objects are entering the conveyor, and the system rapidly changes the direction of each belt to ensure the item goes into the appropriate box.

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Making Fancy Manhole Covers

Making Fancy Manhole Covers

The manhole covers here in the U.S. are pretty utilitarian. But in Japan, manhole covers can be works of urban art. This video from Process X takes us inside a high-tech factory that turns raw steel into embossed discs, then has artists embellish them with colorful enamels applied with squeeze bottles.

3D-Printed Metal Pen Factory

3D-Printed Metal Pen Factory

Mega Process takes us on a tour of a factory that produces unique, high-end pens using 3D-printed metal. Merain Korea uses a selective laser sintering 3D printer to melt together thin layers of metal powder, then painstakingly deburr, clean, and plate each pen before assembly and packaging.

Making Furniture from Recycled Plastic

Making Furniture from Recycled Plastic

If you’ve visited a Costco lately, you might have seen some chairs made from Polywood, a durable material produced by chopping up and melting down plastic, then extruding it into a weight-bearing and weatherproof lumber for making furniture. Popular Mechanics takes us inside the Polywood factory to see how they do it.

How Buttons Are Made

How Buttons Are Made

The buttons on our clothing are one of those things we take for granted. But it’s somebody’s job to make them for us. All of World Process takes us inside of a factory that cranks out buttons by the thousands. They pour liquid plastic into tubes or sheets, slice or cut out button shapes, then drill and tumble them until shiny.

How Giant Hex Nuts Are Made

How Giant Hex Nuts Are Made

King Process takes us inside a Korean factory that makes large industrial nuts. The process starts with rods of steel, which they heat in a forge, then use machines to shape the molten metal into hexagons, punch holes into them, and tap screw threads after cooling and polishing. If you need some bolts to go with, here you go.

Five Korean Food Factories

Five Korean Food Factories

This satisfying compilation video from Food Kingdom takes us on a tour of five factories in Korea that make different kinds of foods. We start off with rainbow-colored cake layers, followed by corn chip snacks, deep-fried and stuffed tofu pouches, chocolate nut mini brownies, and chocolate cakes. We’re so hungry now.

How Rubber Boots Are Made

How Rubber Boots Are Made

Process X takes us inside a Japanese factory that’s been making rubber boots for almost 90 years. They start with lumpy, raw rubber, then roll, stamp, form, and assemble pieces to create the body and soles. Then vulcanization applies heat and pressure to make the boots flexible and durable before finishing.

The Humanoid Factory

The Humanoid Factory

Animator MIKAN used the Unity game and graphics engine to create this engrossing video of an imaginary factory that churns out humanoids by the dozens. Watch as the individual components come together to form each figure, then stick around to the end to see how many pass the rigorous quality assurance testing.

Inside a Vinyl Record Factory

Inside a Vinyl Record Factory

Music on vinyl has made a comeback here in America, so a number of factories here can press records. But there’s only one record manufacturer in Korea – Machang Music & Pictures. All Process of World takes us inside the factory for a look at the process of creating a master disc which is used to press tiny grooves into vinyl blanks.

Floppy Disk Factory

Floppy Disk Factory

It’s been a long time since we needed floppy disks to store data. But we still enjoyed watching this retro factory video posted by StirlingEngineering, which shows how they used to produce 3.5″ floppies. It’s a satisfying 5-minutes sequence of mechanical ear candy.

Inside a Chalk Factory

Inside a Chalk Factory

Chalk seems like a pretty basic thing, but it’s still interesting to see how it’s made. Process X takes us inside of the Tenjin Chalk factory which mashes powdered calcium carbonate with water and extrudes it into cylinders before slicing it into pieces. They add colorings and pour the mixture into molds for gypsum chalk.

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Butane Fuel Can Factory

Butane Fuel Can Factory

We love watching videos of factories making things we take for granted. Process X takes us inside the Nitinen factory in Japan that makes 17 million cans of butane fuel each year. The assembly line ballet starts with printed metal blanks which they bend and assemble into cans, then attach lids, valves, and eventually fill with gas.

Spring Coiling Machine

Spring Coiling Machine

This fascinating piece of industrial equipment from WAFIOS takes thick steel wire and turns it into the kind of heavy-duty coil springs you might see wrapped around a shock absorber. It uses a series of rollers to feed the wire and computer-controlled bending wheels to ensure the precise shape and size of the coil.

Turning Molten Steel into Rebar

Turning Molten Steel into Rebar

The Process K channel shares videos of industry at work in factories around Korea. In this clip, you’ll see how thick steel bars are stretched and pulled while hot to create skinny lengths of rebar used for reinforcing concrete. Let’s face it, can you ever get enough footage of molten hot steel?

Inside a Bread Factory

Inside a Bread Factory

Sit back and enjoy this 14-minute video from a bread factory in Korea, where ingredients are combined, then kneaded into dough and baked in industrial ovens. Then the freshly-baked loaves of white and chestnut bread glide along an assembly line, tumble out of their pans and head to the cooling racks before slicing.

Inside a Toilet Paper Factory

Inside a Toilet Paper Factory

If there’s one thing humans use a lot of, it’s toilet paper. This video from Process X takes us inside Japan’s Marutomi Paper Co., a factory that cranks out millions of rolls of the stuff every month. They start with stacks of paper pulp that they wet and press into massive rolls, which they then print, wrap around cores, and slice.

Making a Vat of Chili Oil

Making a Vat of Chili Oil

Like many of you, we enjoy spicy foods. In this wonderfully satisfying video from a factory in China, we see how they combine spices, oil, herbs, sugar, and even beer to create mass quantities of delicious chili oil for hot pot cooking. While we couldn’t find where to buy this exact product, there’s a similar hot pot base available on Amazon.

The Cake-o-Matic 1000i

The Cake-o-Matic 1000i

If you’ve ever watched Nailed It!, you know that it takes some skill to cleanly frost a cake. This piece of factory equipment from Unifiller Systems does the hard work by squeezing out frosting and smoothing it. The Cake-o-Matic 1000i can ice the top and side of a cake in just 1.3 seconds, and can also fill layers or decorate pies.

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Inside a Pencil Factory

Inside a Pencil Factory

Process X takes us inside Japan’s Kita-Boshi Pencil Co., a factory that cranks out pencils by the thousands each day, shaving shapes out of cedar and cypress wood and filling them with leads before gluing them together, shaping, and sharpening them. Oh, and if you need an eraser, they’ve got you covered.

How Flatware Is Made

How Flatware Is Made

The Science Channel’s How It’s Made takes us inside a factory that makes stainless steel forks, knives, and spoons. There’s much more to it than pouring molten metal into molds, which is what we had always assumed. We’re guessing the hollow handles cut down on raw materials cost.

Making Giant Wire Rope

Making Giant Wire Rope

Germany’s Fatzer Brugg is one of the world’s leading producers of industrial wire rope. These thick braids of wire come together to form incredibly strong cables which are used for gondolas, ropeways, and bridges. This short clip shows one of the machines they use to twist together spools of wire to form a finished rope.

Making Giant Bolts

Making Giant Bolts

There’s just something about molten hot metal that gets us excited. In this video from Mega Process, they take us inside of a facility in Korea that produces huge metal bolts for industrial use. They start with long rods of steel which they cut down to bolt length, heat and shape the heads, then machine the screw threads.

Stickering Lemons

Stickering Lemons

We’ve seen all kinds of specialized factory equipment over the years, showing off some ingenious engineering to perform repetitive tasks. One of the more satisfying machines we’ve seen in recent times is this contraption that rapidly applies stickers to lemons as they glide along on the conveyor belt below.

A Factory That Makes Rice Cookers from Stone

A Factory That Makes Rice Cookers from Stone

Modern rice cookers are made from metal and plastic, but traditional Korean rice cookers are made from stone. This fascinating video from Factory Monster takes us inside a company that creates the bowl-shaped cookers and their lids by cutting them from a 9-ton boulder. The English subtitles are quite entertaining.

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