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Surface finish on plastic composites can vary a great deal, depending on the physical and chemical properties of the polymer blend, as well as the parameters of the injection molding process.
The first objective is working with the client to determine how important the surface finish is for the appearance and/or performance of the final product. For example, does the product need to be eye-catching or simply functional? Depending on the answer, the material selected and the desired finish will determine the settings for the injection molding process, as well as any secondary finishing operations that might be required.
Commodity plastics are versatile materials appropriate for a breadth of applications. However, specialty or complex injection molded parts like those required for medical, fire, and safety industries may contain requirements that mainstream polymers can’t fulfill, such as chemical resistance, fire retardant properties and mechanical grade strength.
Controlling costs is a huge part of any project. Materials can be expensive, especially advanced or specially-engineered resins, so you want to get as much bang for your materials buck as you can. One way to do this is the proper use of regrind.
There is always some unused thermoplastic material that is left over from injection molding, typically taken from mold components such as gates, flash, runners, and sprues. What's the point in wasting it.
Critical-use medical devices are essential in the performance of important and often life-saving tasks. As such, they often boast complicated designs and functionality that require the expertise of a complex injection molder to produce. However, that’s only part of the equation.
Complex injection molders entrusted with producing plastic components for medical and other critical-use applications assume a high degree of responsibility to ensure the device performs properly, without fail in sometimes life-endangering situations.
Today’s military is deployed around the world, and that requires defense/safety contractors to develop equipment that performs in a variety of environments and situations. They’re increasingly considering plastic materials for military applications, but developing solutions isn’t without complexities.
One of the main advantages of using injection-molded plastic components is versatility, both in the wide array of resins available for construction and in application. Addressing resin needs early in the design process is ideal, as is partnering with an experienced injection molder with resin-specific expertise.
The overall safety and performance of a vehicle is dependent, in part, on the plastic components used throughout the vehicle. Many people think that when it comes to cars, plastic parts are features like the dashboard, seats and floor mats. But thermoplastic polymers are used in much more critical places throughout a vehicle, many of them under the hood in the car’s powertrain and fuel systems.
In fact, up to 13 different polymers may be used in a single car model, with polypropylene, polyurethane and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) making up 66% of the polymers used in a car.
Medical device performance is inextricably linked to the characteristics of the plastics used. Enhanced properties such as strength, flexibility, transparency, biocompatibility, and temperature and chemical resistance ensure patient safety. They are also mandated by the stringent regulations and classifications of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and The U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention (USP).