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As you swipe your identification card for a meal in the college dining hall or to get into a work building, have you ever stopped to think about all of the steps involved or what it would be like without the card?

For over 50 years, Plastics Unlimited has been providing laminating and identification services to various Wisconsin companies in addition to several national chains.

Co-owners, Scott Levenhagen and Bruce Meihsner, have been in the plastics industry for nearly 40 years, starting off as salesmen before working their way up. Levenhagen married into the family business, which has been based in Wauwatosa for its entire existence, while Meihsner just worked hard.

'We were the natural selection to buy the company, which we were happy to get the opportunity to do,' Levenhagen said. 'Now, it's 20 years later and we are still chugging along, the doors are still open and we are making a few bucks so it's been a good run.'

The company not only does traditional lamination for booklets, menus or photos but also provides other services within the identification realm. Plastics Unlimited helped develop and produce nearly all of the ID systems in the local area.

Levenhagen said the company is described as providing a quick, economical service on any laminating or ID needs.

'Our catch phrase is our products improve your products,' Levenhagen said. 'The printer will print, and by the time we put the lamination on, it has improved that product. The ID systems, the accessories that we have and what we sell, improves what the customer originally purchased.'

Meihsner explained that the laminating industry has become more short run and on demand over the recent years.

'You are going to be in here and out the same day or the day after,' Meihsner said. 'They want it in and out and fast wher as in the past, we used to have four to six weeks to manufacture a product. We don't have that anymore. We have to have almost everything out of the door within a week.'

Levenhagen said one of the biggest things that sets Plastics Unlimited apart is an 80 inch laminator that allows for more wide-format printing.

'Our years of expertise are right up there with the best of them so we'd like to think we know what we are doing,' Levenhagen said.

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