Benefits of Injection Molding Surgical Devices

Posted by Kaysun Corporation on Apr 3, 2015 2:32:20 PM

Apr 3, 2015 2:32:20 PM

Medical grade polymers are quickly becoming the preferred material for a broad range of surgical devices. In certain applications, the robust mechanical properties of medical polymers allow complete removal of metal from the surgical device design.  In other instances, plastic and metal components can combine to create an enhanced product, with attributes that would not be possible in either an all-metal or an all-plastic device.

Incorporating plastic into surgical devices offers a number of benefits including reduced cost, improved ergonomics and increased functionality.  Below are some of the main reasons to consider injection molding for surgical devices:

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Injection Molding Expertise - Worth its Weight in Gold

Posted by Matt Fehrmann on Feb 16, 2015 12:05:00 PM

Feb 16, 2015 12:05:00 PM

Injection Molding Expertise

It would be almost impossible to conceive of a world without plastic injection molded components. They turn up in just about everything we use, and most of us aren’t even aware of the amount of technical expertise that has been used to produce them. From the first glimmer of an idea to the production of the finished product, there is a chain of knowledge that has been incorporated into their design and manufacture. This process does not happen by chance; it is the culmination of many years of experience by highly trained and skilled designers and engineers.

Finding the right combination of injection molding experts under one roof is essential to successfully completing a production job. The molding company must be knowledgeable about the raw material, the variations in the molding machines, and the design of the mold. Every injection-molded component is different, and each has its own set of variables that the injection molding company must understand.

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Topics: Injection Molding

Plastics in the Automotive Industry

Posted by Matt Fehrmann on Feb 9, 2015 2:36:00 PM

Feb 9, 2015 2:36:00 PM

A Solution to a Weighty Problem

More than ever before, automakers are under the gun to improve their car’s efficiency by increasing the fuel economy for all models. In 2012, President Obama finalized standards to increase fuel efficiency to nearly 55 mpg for both cars and light-duty trucks by 2025.

Although there are several ways to achieve this goal, reducing the car’s weight is one of the best – and easiest – ways to improve fuel economy without compromising other design and safety factors. And one of the heaviest components of any car is the powertrain. The powertrain’s weight contributes a disproportionate amount to the car’s overall mass, making the powertrain an area of focus for today’s aggressive automotive part injection molders.

The powertrain is one of a car's most complicated assemblies; it refers to the system of bearings, shafts and gears that transmit the engine’s power to the axle. Recently developed plastics materials can help reduce the number of parts needed to assemble these complex components while also reducing overall vehicle weight.

Plastic is Preferred 

Gone are the days when plastic was considered a cheap alternative to non-critical automotive components. Automotive engineers are combining plastics’ unique and variable properties to perfect designs and to improve their products’ efficiencies.

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Customer Service Can Make or Break a Company

Posted by Mary Stuiber on Sep 11, 2014 1:12:33 PM

Sep 11, 2014 1:12:33 PM

Customer service is an integral part of every organization. Deals can be won or lost through the communication process. Honest communication, with the customer’s best interests always at the forefront—from the initial contact of the pre- sale to the support after the sale—is the cornerstone of good business practice.

With the technology we have today, customer service comes in many forms—face-to-face, phone, e-mail, Skype, the web, etc. And customer service isn’t limited to a call center or customer service personnel—any employee who interacts with a customer is a customer-service representative. It is ideal for account executives or project personnel to meet with customers face to face throughout the year, with frequency determined by customer preferences. It is important to stay connected on a regular basis to make sure you understand their needs, desires, and concerns (which can shift quickly, depending on the project or the market). Whether it is daily, weekly, or monthly dialogue, everyone needs to stay in the loop.

Excellent customer service is essential for:

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Topics: General Manufacturing

High-Quality Partnerships Improve the Bottom Line

Posted by Al Timm on Sep 10, 2014 3:27:30 PM

Sep 10, 2014 3:27:30 PM

“Little” things matter when it comes to overall efficiency, productivity, and quality. Of course, having the best equipment and technologies, materials, know-how, and training is a given. But efficiency and productivity are always enhanced when injection molders and their customers know each other well as partners and work together as a team. They share the same strategies. They know how the other thinks and operates and reacts. As partners, they deepen their relationships over the long term, because they know they are stronger together.

When a customer decided to partner with a high-quality injection molder, great things can happen. For example, project lead times can be shortened. Depending on the size and complexity of the project, as much as two weeks can be saved for a simple part, or many months for larger complete assemblies. This makes a big difference in time to market.

Key factors that contribute to shortened project lead time are:

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Topics: Plastic Part Design

Non-Uniform Wall Thicknesses Can Create Quality Problems

Posted by Ken Glassen on Jul 22, 2014 2:26:51 PM

Jul 22, 2014 2:26:51 PM

Designing wall thicknesses that are as uniform as possible helps control the shrink rate for that part or product. Shrink rates for different materials vary according to wall thickness of the part. Non-uniform walls can lead to large pressure drops during filling, causing significant differences in shrink rates. In turn, varying shrink rates cause internal stresses within the part, leading to warpage.

For example, thicker areas in the part can act as “runners” within the part that alter the way the plastic fills the mold. The molten plastic prefers to follow the easiest path, so its flow will always favor the thicker wall section first. As a result, molten material may race ahead in some locations, and then “backfill” the remaining space. This can be troublesome, especially if adequate venting has not provided in these areas to allow the escape of any trapped air.

When gating a part, it is important to gate into the thickest section and then flow into thinner areas. This is necessary to properly pack the part out after filling. The flow path of molten material must remain open so the plastic material can continue to flow into the part details during the cooling phase. Gating into a thin wall, or flowing through a thin area to get material to a thicker area, may create flow irregularities. The thinner area may freeze and solidify, preventing the additional material in the pack phase from reaching the thick section of the part. This can cause higher shrinkage due to the underpacked conditions in the thick area, resulting in sink and/or warp in the part.

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Topics: Plastic Part Design

Shrink Rate Has a Big Impact on Quality

Posted by Al Timm on Jul 22, 2014 1:51:32 PM

Jul 22, 2014 1:51:32 PM

Not taking the time to properly determine shrink rate can have a big impact on the quality of the final product—including its geometry, performance, and appearance.

Material suppliers typically provide information on the shrink rate of their materials. This number is usually based on ASTM Standard D955 and a .125-inch thick plaque with a specific gating size and location. Although this is a good place to start, this value is typically not accurate enough for many products, especially critical, highly complex parts.

Wall thickness of the part, mold gate size, and processing conditions such as packing pressure and mold temperature are major factors in determining shrinkage of the part. For example, thinner wall sections cool faster, resulting in less shrinkage. Larger gates will result in longer packing time, also providing less shrinkage.

Shrink rates also vary according to flow direction. After gate locations are selected, it is important to analyze the part to determine the basic direction of flow. On long, narrow parts—gated at the end, for instance—flow will essentially parallel the length of the part. In these cases, the “in-flow” shrink rate is used for this dimension of the part. The “cross-flow” shrinkage is used for dimensions that are perpendicular to the long dimension. For parts with random fill directions, an average of the in-flow and cross-flow directions can be used. For parts with critical dimensions, prototyping is the safest option (the mold can be also left steel-safe so that critical areas can be “tweaked” if needed after a production molding process is established).

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Topics: Injection Molding

Up-Front Collaboration Helps the Environment, Too

Posted by Al Timm on Jun 24, 2014 2:19:30 PM

Jun 24, 2014 2:19:30 PM

There are plenty of great production reasons for getting together with your injection molding team during the earliest design stages to discuss design for manufacturability (DFM). It is also a great way to help the environment.

We all have a stake in doing whatever we can to protect our natural resources, water, and air. That’s why it is important for manufacturers to be proactive in reducing their consumption of natural resources, production of non-recyclable waste, and carbon footprint—which DFM helps us achieve.

Up-front DFM collaboration with your injection molder brings the best minds together to come up with the best design for your product, as well as the best way to manufacture it.

Take, for example, product design. DFM and computer modeling can identify the thinnest part wall thickness and weight that can still achieve the top performance objectives for that part. This is important—not just for reducing material costs and product weight, but also for keeping you from going with design specs that call for more plastic than is actually required. By using only the amount of material you really need, you conserve valuable, petroleum-based resources and reduce waste/scrap that might be sent to the landfill. You will also be spending less energy to produce the part—another plus for the environment (and the budget).

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Topics: Injection Molding

What It Takes to Mold Complex Parts

Posted by Ken Glassen on Jun 24, 2014 11:55:00 AM

Jun 24, 2014 11:55:00 AM

There is no question that manufacturing complex parts takes injection molding to a much higher level. More knowledge, skill, and expertise are required, as well as sophisticated infrastructure, equipment, and environmental controls. Even though they may not always be in demand, these extended capabilities are always available at Kaysun to quickly meet the changing needs of clients, including short production schedules.

It starts with our facility, which is fully air-conditioned to maintain optimum temperature levels—ambient temperatures, and especially humidity, which will affect raw material properties. Maintaining a stable, injection molding climate reduces the environmental impacts that fluctuating temperature can have on operations. Our building is also designed to optimize material flow, from raw materials to finished goods—this improves overall productivity and enables faster/easier mold changes.

Key pieces of equipment in our manufacturing area are high-end Toyo electric presses, which provide better repeatability and more control compared to the more common hydraulic presses. The increased precision and repeatability electric presses provide—for example, a positioning accuracy of ±0.0001 inch—are ideal for complex parts. Other advantages of electric presses include:

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Topics: Injection Molding

Why it's Important to Know Your Tool Maker

Posted by Ken Glassen on Apr 10, 2014 8:32:00 AM

Apr 10, 2014 8:32:00 AM

Success in the injection molding business isn’t just about having the right equipment or the latest technologies. This is a good start, of course—but to completely meet the ever-evolving needs of clients who make complex products under challenging time and cost constraints, injection molders must have top tool makers in their supply chains that embrace the same vision of manufacturing excellence and customer service.

Injection molders and their tool makers must be rock-solid partners that are committed to the same beliefs about how to conduct business. Core to this philosophy is that tool makers must treat the injection molder’s clients as their own.

Over time (and hundreds of projects), a deep trust and understanding develops that establishes a partnership based on consistent performance, shared problem-solving, and trust. It is much like a quarterback and wide receiver—they have worked so closely together, with the same belief system, that they think and respond in the same way to deliver the winning play. The other important result of having a shared vision is that the injection molder and the tool maker help each other improve at what they do—sharing or developing best practices, or expanding capabilities and opportunities, to create a long, profitable relationship—and yes, even friendship.

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Topics: Tooling / Molds

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