A popular children’s toy used to make cool creations is made right here in Pennsylvania. Kelly Byrne shows you how K’Nex are made in this week’s ‘Keystone Creations’.
A building system made up of rods and connectors constructing creations for decades.
“It’s a great toy,” says Director of Marketing Kristen Krikorian. “Very creative, very imaginative… It’s something that kids can come back to again and again and build whatever toy they have in their mind.”
Since 1992, K’Nex have been stimulating the imaginations of children around the world and each construction begins right here in Pennsylvania.
“It starts with the designers who think about what kids want to build and want to play with,” says Krikorian. Designers like John take those ideas and turn them into reality using existing pieces. The models are then recreated on the computer.
“These images are used for the instructions, going out step by step, figuring out the best and easiest way to build the model that the designer has created.”
Next is manufacturing, which takes place two miles down the road at the Rodon Group. President and CEO Michael Araten says, “We start with this small plastic resin… then we want color so we mix it with color here, it gets fed… into this proportionally set press, itself.”
Then, the plastic is melted and injected into the mold, cooled, and packed together with robots, each piece made in just seconds.
While K’Nex stays true to its original idea, it’s changing with modern times by incorporating technology and virtual reality into toys assembled by kids, themselves.
Krikorian says, “We want them to have a sense of pride as they’re snapping the pieces together and following the instructions. It’s baby steps. Something like this can look really intimidating, but if you just start one step at a time, at the end of the day you’ll have a giant ferris wheel. And you can show your parents and friends, ‘I did this’. So, we just want kids to be very proud of what they’ve created.”
In Hatfield with this week’s ‘Keystone Creation,’ Kelly Byrne