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Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Retooling

Monmouth Rubber Retooling

Published in the Asbury Park Press 8/02/04

In business for 40 years, Monmouth Rubber and Plastics Corp. in Long Branch has done everything it can to survive. The company is in a tax-friendly urban enterprise zone, it trains its work force continually and it exports to emerging markets.

The company needs every edge it gets, owner John M. Bonforte Sr. said, because its competitors are operating less expensively overseas. But in New Jersey, those edges are hard to find.

As soon as we innovate and save a dollar, we find the state has added 20 or 30 cents to our operating costs,” Bonforte said.

Bonforte and other executives are calling on state government to improve the climate for manufacturers, even though some observers believe the continuing shrinking of the sector is inevitable.

To stem the job losses in manufacturing — 74,000 in the last three years alone — the New Jersey Business and Industry Association, the state’s largest business lobby group, has unveiled a set of 31 proposals, from tax breaks to easing environmental regulations, that it says will help its manufacturing members compete — at least regionally.

New Jersey once was a hub of manufacturing activity

Saving the once powerful industry could be tough. New Jersey once was a hub of manufacturing activity, building everything from slide rules to television sets, said James W. Hughes, an economist and dean of the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University.

But in some cases, the products became obsolete. In others, companies searched for other states — and countries — where land is more available for expansion and the workforce is more affordable, allowing them to sell their final product cheaper, Hughes said.

As a result, the sector has eroded from 900,000 workers in the late 1960s to a little more than 340,000 workers today.

Nonetheless, the Business and Industry Association said the sector is worth trying to save. It still represents more than 10 percent of the private-sector work force; the jobs typically pay 20 percent more than the state’s average wage; and many of those jobs are available to less-skilled workers who live in urban and older suburban areas, where good-paying jobs are harder to find, the association reported.

It’s still a significant component to the economy, and it still pays significant taxes. And it’s something that shouldn’t be ignored,” Hughes said. “If there are some public policy or regulatory adjustments to help us retain manufacturing . . . then it’s worth pursuing.”

Monmouth Rubber and Plastics

Monmouth Rubber and Plastics has 48 workers, and it makes foam for rubber and plastic used in flotation vests, wet suits and padding for football and baseball helmets. Bonforte pays his entry-level workers $8 an hour along with overtime pay; he covers half their health insurance; and he offers a 401(k) retirement plan.

The company has survived, Bonforte said, by automating its plant and changing its product line. It once made rubber and plastic; now it makes closed cell foam that’s used to make rubber and plastic. But the competition from overseas is intense, he said.


A family of materials; A world of solutions provided by Monmouth Rubber & Plastics!

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp. has been a leader in the innovation and technology of cellular polymeric materials for over 54 years.

As a recognized leader and innovator of proprietary closed cell cross linking technology and polymer blend technology, Monmouth was retained to do product development and improvement by a variety of companies. Some of these companies, in chronological order, are:

B.F. Goodrich, Sponge Products Div. – Shelton, CT
Neoprene/Vinyl Nitrile Blends

Uniroyal Chemical, Ensolite Div. – Mishawaka, IN
IV-1 IV-5 Series – Neoprene/Vinyl Nitrile Blends – Ensofoam Crosslinked EVA Blends

Plymouth Rubber, Plymouth, MA
Crosslinked Low Density EVA Blends

Sentinel Products Corp. – Hyannis, MA
Polyolefin Blends, all types including Metallocene Resin Crosslinked Foam

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp.’s in-house technology timeline is as follows:

1968 – Monmouth develops and perfects the Durafoam™ multi-step process for the curing and blowing of low-density closed cell materials. Prior to 1968, most materials were cured with the one step or jump-blow process which resulted in densities no lower than 12 pounds per cubic foot. By using a controlled multi-step-cure blow process, Monmouth was able to crosslink and blow materials in densities down to 2 pounds per cubic foot. Monmouth has made significant improvements to this Durafoam™ multi-step process over the years as polymers, products and customer needs have changed.

1969 – Monmouth develops for B.F. Goodrich, Shelton CT, a low density, Vinyl/Nitrile/Neoprene blend for industrial and automotive markets. Monmouth’s proprietary technology in hydrocarbon polymer blending has been the keystone in its technology firsts. The product line developed for B.F. Goodrich in 1969 is the forerunner of the Vinyl/Nitrile/Neoprene blends produced today by Rubatex®, Uniroyal Ensolite and Halstead.

1971 – Monmouth develops the first commercial, low density, Neoprene/SBR blend for the industrial and automotive markets. Listed under ASTM-D-1056, SCE41 through SCE45, Monmouth produced and sold commercial blends of its Durafoam™ C121A series in densities as low as 3.5 pounds per cubic foot.

1974 – Monmouth commercializes the world’s first 100% EPDM, low density, closed cell sponge. Proprietary Durafoam™ technology allowed Monmouth to produce the C191XLDS in densities as low as to 2.0 pounds per cubic foot. One outstanding, commercially successful application for this technology was as a sealing gasket for all Chrysler tail lamps. Durafoam™ C191XLDS was used exclusively during the 1980’s in all Chrysler vehicles. Monmouth is currently listed as an approved source under Chrysler MSAY 430.

1977 – Monmouth provides some of the initial EVA Polyethylene crosslinked foam technology and developmental work for the Ensolite Division of Uniroyal. The product was ultimately marketed by Uniroyal under the trade name “Ensofoam”. This developmental work included pilot plant production at our Long Branch facility as well as product development.

1986 – Monmouth introduces its Bondaflex™ line of recycled cellular and solid rubber and plastic materials. Monmouth’s technology centers around its proprietary process for controlled particle size distribution of similar and dissimilar materials. Since 1998, the Bondaflex™ process has resulted in Monmouth being able to recycle in-house 98% of all the materials it manufactures.

The Bondaflex™ process also allows Monmouth to guarantee to its customers that Monmouth will accept back at its Long Branch facility 100% of the material that Monmouth supplies. This includes skids, banding wire, stretch wrap, as well as the cellular and solid material that Monmouth makes and sells. Monmouth knows of no other manufacturer that offers such a guarantee.

August 1996
– Monmouth commercializes its Durafoam™ DK series of Kinetically Grafted Blends. KGB blend technology allows dissimilar polymers (those that do not blend well mechanically) to blend as a result of a chemical bond that develops through proprietary KGB technology. The DK benefit to the customer is a blend product with superior performance and value as opposed to more expensive, homogenous polymers. The DK series of closed cell Neoprene/EPDM blends covers the five hardness ranges of ASTM and have UL listing for flame resistance and gasketing applications.

January 1998 – Monmouth is the first to introduce a 54″ and 60″ wide pressed cured bun in a neoprene blend. The Durafoam™ process results in a press cured bun having an exceptionally large size, a tight cell structure, and superior physical properties as compared to a continuously cured roll by the open air process.

The above technology events allow Monmouth to offer to its customers the following commitment:
“To become and remain the highest quality producer of cellular rubber and plastic buns in the world”.

Other Monmouth products include:

AIRAFLEX™ – Open Cell Sponge Rubber & Plastic Foam
DURAFLEX™ – Solid Rubber & Plastic Sheeting

The Monmouth family of materials has performed well for over 40 years for sound absorption, shock absorption, conductive, non-conductive, fire retardant, high strength to weight ratio, hot and cold insulation, and floatation.

The Monmouth family of materials is made from Neoprene, Natural Rubber, SBR, Butyl, Butadiene, Nitrile, EPDM, ECH, Polystyrene, Polyethylene, Polypropylene, EVA, EMA, Mettalocene Resin, PVC, Polyurethane, and Proprietary Blends of the above.

The Monmouth family of materials is offered in Buns, Sheets, Rolls, Stripping, with and without pressure sensitive adhesive, and specialty laminations.

The Monmouth family of materials is used in the automotive, athletic, shoe, construction, leisure products, and miscellaneous industrial products industries. Monmouth is a global supplier with distribution points in North America, South America, Europe and Asia.

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics

The Monmouth family of materials is sold through Gasket Cutters, Fabricators, and Resellers Worldwide.

Free Technical Support

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics has a comprehensive state-of-the-art physical testing laboratory, including shock attenuation testing equipment. Monmouth is equipped to test and certify to a multitude of industry and government specifications. Some of these specifications are: ASTM-D-1056, SAE J18, MSAY 430, GM6086M, Mil-R-6130, Mil-C-3133, Mil-R-6855, Mil-G-1149, Delphi SD2-207 Sec. 6.1. Product development, product testing, product evaluation, and product sampling are offered by Monmouth as part of its technical support program.


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Related Topics and Resources:  Rubber and Plastics  |  Closed Cell Gaskets  |  Rubber Library

Monmouth Rubber donates Rubber Mats to PAL Boxing Club

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics donated Rubber Mats worth $3,000 to Long Branch NJ Police Department PAL Boxing Club.

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics frequently donated Rubber and Plastic products for the town, such as padding for the vehicles for the police dogs” stated John Bonforte Sr., GM of Monmouth Rubber & Plastics, in Long Branch NJ.

Monmouth Rubber donates $3000 to Long Branch NJ Police Department PAL Club.

The History of Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp., a family run business in NJ.

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp. is a privately held corporation. The company was established in 1964 as Monmouth Rubber Corp. In 1995 it changed its “doing business as” name to Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp.

The company was founded in 1964 by John Bonforte Sr. The final phase of Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corporation’s family business succession plan was completed January 1, 2010 with John M. Bonforte Jr’s assumption of the roles of president and COO of the sponge rubber and plastic foam manufacturer.

Between 1964 and 1968, the company operated as a fabricator of cellular rubber and plastic materials initially drawing on the background of John M. Bonforte Sr. who started his business career in 1961 with Rubatex Corp., Bedford, VA. John M. Bonforte Sr. held various positions in sales, marketing, and product development at Rubatex® .

John M. Bonforte, Sr. General Manager and Technical Director,

Phone: 800-375-1960 Ext. 112,

Email John Sr.


Equivalent Replacements For American National Rubber (ANR) Stock Numbers

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics offers Closed Cell Sponge Rubber & Plastic Foam Stocks that are Equivalent Replacements For American National Rubber Stock Numbers

Durafoam™ closed cell sponge rubber and plastic foam has been supplied to gasket cutters, fabricators and resellers without interruption for over 40 years for use in such applications as foam tape, automotive gaskets, expansion joints, filler strips in concrete, shoe inner sole padding, and athletic and medical specialties.

Durafoam™ is manufactured in the form of buns, sheets, rolls, tape, and specialty laminations. All Durafoam™ products are 100% recyclable AND DO NOT CONTAIN ANY CFCs.

Click here for a chart of our equivalent replacements for ANR sponge rubber and plastic foam stock numbers.

The Monmouth Rubber & Plastics stock numbers, we believe, are comparable to the ANR (American National Rubber) stock numbers based on their published physical properties charts, as of December 1, 2008. When considering a competitive comparable material, please keep in mind that some materials have unique physicals that are not part of the recognized industry specifications and standards.

Free Rubber Samples Equivalent Replacements For American National Rubber Stock Numbers

Customer sample evaluation and approval of any substitution is suggested. MRPC will supply free of charge samples and testing of its materials to assist customers in their evaluation. For a Monmouth Rubber equivalent to an ANR stock you are using, please contact:


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Monmouth Rubber Quality Management System is successfully reassessed to ISO 9001:2008

Monmouth Rubber Quality Management System (QMS)

A Tradition of Quality Standards

The Monmouth Rubber Quality Management System (QMS) has been recently assessed and as a result has received the upgrade to the ISO 9001:2008 version of the quality standard. This new version mainly underlines the customer focus that should motivate any quality effort, and includes modifications for some terms used in the 2000 version.

Formalizing our quality system

Since we started with the project of formalizing our quality system and consequently being able to receive the certification for ISO 9001: 2000, we have been able to systematize our more than 40 years of experience in service, manufacturing and quality of closed cell rubber products.

Our commitment to our Customers

During these difficult, but challenging times Monmouth not only has been able to continue its operations without interruption, but also grow with new customers. Our commitment to our Customers is to continually improve our performance to better serve your needs, and we believe our QMS reflects that.


Rubber Manufacturing Company - Made in the USA

Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Poised to Capitalize on Growing Demand for U.S. Manufacturing

A resurging demand for U.S. manufacturing is the hot topic in industry right now. Our tried-and-true business model has put Monmouth Rubber & Plastics right in the thick of things.

We’re well positioned to take advantage of the renewed interest in U.S. manufacturing because of our:

  • Regular investments in state-of-the-art technology and equipment
  • Low overhead
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Commitment to maintaining a manageable business size

Thanks to these strategies, we’ve already been able to capture new production orders that formerly went to overseas manufacturers.

The increased demand for U.S. manufacturing is driven by concerns over quality of products made overseas, as well as realizations that rising shipping costs and lag times make American factories a more efficient and cost-effective source of products and materials.

The resurgence of U.S. manufacturing

The resurgence of U.S. manufacturing was highlighted by news reports earlier this year of Wham-O shifting production of its Frisbee and Hula Hoop from China back to the U.S. We’ve also witnessed automotive suppliers moving production from Asia back to U.S. and looking to source their gasketing material locally.

All of these developments herald good news for manufacturers who’ve prepared as we have by:

  • Investing in product innovation and development
  • Maintaining in-house product testing
  • Lowering – or even eliminating – corporate debt
  • Cultivating a well-balanced customer base

Contact John Bonforte Jr. at 1-888-3626, ext. 29, for information on how you can benefit from our ability to adapt to today’s dynamic global economy.

Made in America, trusted throughout the world - Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp, 75 Long Branch Avenue Long Branch, NJ 07740 U.S.A | 1-888-362-6888