Industrial plastic compression molding provides a cost-effective alternative to metal-formed parts. Properly engineered, compression molding plastic can be stronger, more resistant to electrical current, heat, corrosion, lighter and less expensive. Furthermore, they require less or no lubrication between moving parts, and resist scratching or deforming, like getting bent, dinged, cracked or chipped. Plastics’ properties also give you greater flexibility in product design and application.
Whether you’re currently manufacturing plastic parts or considering plastics for parts you’re designing, bear in mind not all plastics are created equal. Think about your products’ features and uses, then consider the following three categories to determine the best plastic compression molding products’ match:
1. Soft parts made of foam or rubber;
2. Composites with custom-mixed resins or reinforced with fibers;
3. Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW) plastics for compression molding.
Soften the blow with foam or plastic rubber compression moldingThe plastics industry offers a plethora of business and consumer products that utilize both soft and hard foam and rubber, including medical devices, filtration and odor absorbers, vibration dampers, gaskets and seals, flotation devices, insulation and sound absorption, packaging and toys.
Lay on more strength using a plastic compression molder that integrates compositesIf your parts need structural rigidity, contact compression molding plastics companies that work with composite materials, either special polyethylene compounds or strands of carbon or glass fiber. Combined together in custom formulas, your products can offer enough strength and flexibility to bend without snapping.
Bring in the heavyweights for super-strong plastic compression moldingUltra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW) Polymers have a molecular weight average 10 times greater than the polyethylene resins discussed above. This means it acts more like powdered metal, and won't melt or flow as a molten liquid. Particular advantages to UHMW include the highest abrasion resistance of any thermoplastic polymer, outstanding impact strength even at very low temperatures, extremely low friction as well as self-lubricating, good sound dampening, chemical and stress cracking resistance properties. It's also easily machined like metal.
- Plastic compression molding services offer many benefits, producing inexpensive, durable parts. However, this strength doubles as its weakness. Because thermo-set plastics require a chemical reaction to cure, they often produce volatile organic compounds and cannot be reprocessed or reformed once set, making it very difficult if not impossible to recycle. Weigh this potential detriment against the benefits before moving forward with new product development.