ISOWA NEWS LETTER
The ISOWA NEWS LETTER is a newsletter for the benefit
of special customers only.
Each month we bring you information about our company
and its products – information you won’t find on our home page
or in our catalogs.
We hope the ISOWA NEWS LETTER will help you feel closer to us.
1├ ”A first for the Tokai region! A steam locomotive came to ISOWA!!”
2├ Family Open House 2018 from President Isowa’s Blog, ISOWA DIARY
Hello! My name is Ryota Kitada, and I work for ISOWA AMERICA (IA).
Phoenix, Arizona, the city where I live, is gradually growing hotter,
and it is now a comfortable season, where one can spend the
entire day wearing just a t-shirt. The days are getting hotter as
summer approaches—last year it reached 52.8°C in
Death Valley in California, Arizona’s neighboring state.
IA engineers travel by air when visiting our customers on business.
However, the heat last year meant that flights were canceled, and
I remember encountering difficulties because we were unable to
return home on schedule. There is an airport called “Phoenix Sky
Harbor” about 15 minutes by car from the apartment where I live,
and on that particular day, it was so hot that the aircraft was unable
to land or take off—apparently more than 40 flights scheduled to
arrive at or depart from Phoenix were canceled.
Later I heard that when the air temperature rises above 49°C (120°F)
the air density drops and the aircraft is unable to gain sufficient lift to
take off, so apparently, they will only take off in conditions up to a
maximum temperature of 48°C (118°F).
This summer I plan to stay hydrated and get through the heat!
And now, let’s turn to Vol. 110 of the ISOWA NEWS LETTER.
We hope you like this edition.
“A first for the Tokai region! A steam locomotive came to ISOWA!!”
Hello everyone! My name is Shunpei Inagaki, and
I work at the Tokyo Domestic Sales Office.
As was mentioned in a variety of industry publications, from
February 12 to 24, we displayed a C62 corrugated paper
steam locomotive at the ISOWA head office. In addition to
ISOWA people, we were visited by many customers, business
partners, and students wishing to take a look, and the steam
locomotive drew in more than 700 people in total. They were
also impressed by the appeal of the 1/1 scale display, which
seemed as if it could move at any time.
In this issue, I would like to introduce the C62 exhibit, which
made its first stop in the Tokai region. I would very much like
to convey even a little of what it was that drew our customers
to talk about how much they wanted to see it. Please read through
it when you have a spare moment.
[A steam locomotive came to ISOWA!!]
As was mentioned in a previous issue of the ISOWA NEWS LETTER,
we held another type of Open House, the “ISOWA Family Open House”
events known as “F.O.H.” In F.O.H. events, we invite the families
of ISOWA people to the head office and watch the activities of
families through various events, as well as enjoying the exchange
that this involves. This time was a special event with food trucks,
circus, and 1/1 scale model of a tank (that can actually move!), and
all the families involved had a great time.
The centerpiece of this F.O.H. was the C62 corrugated paper steam
locomotive on display, crafted by corrugated paper artist Hideo Shima.
A website illustrating the making of the C62.
Although there was the talk of a steam locomotive exhibition four
years ago, we couldn’t get the right timing and we had to give it up
at the time. However, we still had the right connections and through
these connections, we were able to set up the display at this year’s
event. On February 10 and 11, ISOWA people and their children
began assembling the locomotive in the factory, where it made
a gallant spectacle for a period of two weeks from the twelfth of
26 customers from 15 different companies visited the event, and left
us comments and acclaim, making statements such as, “It leaves
an impression that simply can’t be conveyed through a blog or
newspaper article!” “It’s not just the exterior—even details like the
instruments in the driver’s seat have been reproduced. It’s wonderful!”
“I’m proud to have worked on package development, but it made
me feel that there were areas where I wasn’t quite up to the task.”
“There were so many parts to reproduce—just thinking of the time
required to finish each one makes it seem like a monumental effort.”
“I was really happy that I was able to meet Mr. Shima.”
At last, on the day of the Family Open House, ISOWA people and
their families gathered one after another, and we were finally able to
open the exhibition. Tickets of a sort, which were inscribed “From
Minamishimabara to ISOWA,” were given out at the reception, and
the conductor clipped them with scissors! For me, born in the nineties
as I was, this was the first time I had experienced such a thing and it
really left an impression.
The size and sophistication of the steam locomotive in real life,
and the enthusiasm of its maker Mr. Shima was enough to make
my voice shake with spontaneous wonder. This exhibit inspired
more than 580 ISOWA people.
[The project leader’s story!]
We asked Mr. K from the Production Planning Group, who worked
as a project leader for four years to bring this dream to fruition,
to look back on the C62 exhibition. He will relate how things
progressed up until the time of the exhibition, and talk about how
the actual exhibition went.
I am K, the project leader for the ISOWA steam locomotive.
The Family Open House held on February 24 has finished and,
all has returned to normal inside the factory. I’m sure there are
people who do not even remember that there was a locomotive
Now I’d like to look back on things a little.
The theme of this exhibit was to display the actual size model of
the C62 steam locomotive, which goes by the name of “Shirokuni,”
made of corrugated paper. I started by relating how I, with no
knowledge of steam locomotives, got railroad enthusiasts roped
in as members, improving the knowledge of 13 members.
And then, a second theme—
moving from assembly to a participation-style event. This was all
predicated on our corporate philosophy of “Creating a company
with the best corporate culture in the world that makes us and our
families happy.” We set out to enjoy this activity from the planning
stages, and to have children and families enjoy attending the
As I have already mentioned, for this event, a long road stretched
ahead of us that included assembling, displaying, the Family Open
House, and finally disassembling after the event. But first, before the
two-day assembly effort started, the entire assembly team visited
the Ryujin Shrine to pray for the safety of all concerned.
When we began assembling the locomotive, our first impression was
that it was huge! We had anticipated this, but when confronted with
the real thing, each and every part seemed enormous! Although the
parts were too big for a child to hold easily, some children were still
keenly interested, and worked hard together with the adults. What’s
more, they worked at the corrugated paper and paper craft we had
prepared, applying their imagination in ways impossible for adults.
The assembly of the steam locomotive was carried out under the
direction of Mr. Shima. We split into two teams, laughing and giving
directions in loud voices, emphasizing safety as we assembled with
a little more enjoyment than in our normal work.
It wasn’t just the children—the adults also seemed tremendously
enthusiastic about the assembly.
Among them were the section chief of our customer corrugated plant,
who worked in collaboration with Mr. Shima, their company president’s
son (a university student) and the following day, the company president
herself, who came to assist Mr. Shima and cheer us on. The woman
who was making parts and cleaning there beside Mr. Shima, that
was the company president!
As we worked towards the day of the Family Open House—which
was different to a normal open house, our imaginations took flight
and we put the steam locomotive together with an enthusiast’s
devotion to the details of the locomotive display that an amateur
For steam locomotives, the left side of the direction of travel is called
the “official side,” and it was this side that we wanted to show.
Incidentally, the right side is apparently referred to as the “unofficial
side.” That seems sad, somehow …
We were also insistent about the entrance from the reception.
We made a ticket barrier like those of old, and tried painting the
wood various colors before finally settling on a mix of hues.
Although at first we were expecting 450, or at most 500 people to
come, there were 580 at the beginning of the week— a terrific
We rushed to increase the number of meals, secured parking lots,
and increased the number of staff scheduled to be at reception
(I would like to say thank you to everyone who graciously
assented, despite our sudden request).
Speaking of haste, why do you think we referred to the 1/1 scale tank
as 1/1 rather than “actual size”? Well, that’s down to military secrecy!
We couldn’t measure an actual tank, and of course there was no way
to get hold of the designs, so we used a pair of Vernier calipers to
measure a 1/35 scale plastic model and enlarged it.
Mr. Ohashi from the “1/1 manufacturing society” said that what were
needed to create a 1/1 scale tank were “grit and tenacity.” Just imagining
measuring every part of a model with Vernier calipers made me think
he was right (wow!).
Another problem was that while there were people who knew about
steam locomotives, when it came to knowing about tanks … well, we
had to ask Mr. Ohashi about how he wanted to display the tank, and
about how big an area would be needed for it to move, and created
a venue layout. From meetings, we knew that the 1/1 tank would be
an open vehicle. For all the exhibits except for the tank, we created
fine-weather and rainy-weather layouts, but we were unable
to come up with a rainy-weather layout for the tank. So, our only choice
was to hope for fine weather on the actual day.
As if in answer to our prayers, the sun showed its face on the day
of the event, producing fine, balmy weather completely unlike
the week beforehand. 580 people came to the Family Open House Day,
and the venue was so crowded that some children got lost.
Overall, we received many wonderful smiles.
In addition to the staff, we received an immense amount of help
from people in their departments, other employees, and even people
outside ISOWA. Thanks to the cooperation of the families
of all the employees, we were able to carry out the assembly,
create the exhibit, and hold the successful Open House. Thank you.
Lastly, if anybody would like to create a steam locomotive themselves,
or wants to build a 1/1 model, I can introduce you to some professionals
who know how to use the tools!
[Supplying Dreams Around the World in Corrugated Paper]
This steam locomotive exhibit was the very embodiment of the
“Supplying Dreams Around the World in Corrugated Paper” concept
embraced by ISOWA, and awakened me to the new potential of the
corrugated paper that inspired me so much. The day may not be far
off when building with corrugated paper gains prominence, like the
snow festivals in Hokkaido, or the art museum at the sand dunes in Tottori.
We at ISOWA will keep searching for new possibilities
as we pursue our dreams.
Family Open House 2018
From President Isowa’s Blog, ISOWA DIARY
We had Family Open House 2018.
▼To read more about it, visit the below website
(President Isowa’s blog, ISOWA DIARY)
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
We thank you for reading through the ISOWA NEWS LETTER.
How did you like our press letter?
If you have an interest in a particular subject,
please kindly inform us. We are willing to bring your subject to the press.
——————Copyright(C) 2009-2018 ISOWA Corporation—————–