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  • Fast prototypes shaped from sheets
    The more latitude designers have defining a part's final form, the greater the strength and quality available without increasing cost. Prototype tools can form Kydex sheet but a more-durable epoxy or fiberreinforced-plastic mold is needed for trial production. The shape of this prototype part
  • Thermoformed tray takes abuse
    for the tray was twin-sheet thermoforming. The process creates hollow parts by molding two sheets of plastic simultaneously. The halves fuse together under heat and pressure inside the mold, eliminating the need for adhesives. The process improves the mechanical transition between surface planes
  • Hungry for large parts? Try a composite sandwich
    and heavy trucks, vehicular roof systems, golf carts, and agricultural and construction equipment. 1 A thermoplastic sheet is thermoformed, heated, then placed in an open mold and vacuum formed to its finished shape. Reinforcement fibers are applied to
  • Paintless parts
    Insert-molded films can put weather-resistant, Class-A skins on large plastic components. Designers used to transforming metal parts into plastic might be intrigued by the idea of getting a glossy, weather-resistant, "Class A " surface straight from the injection mold. That's because painting
  • Secrets of Bond Strength
    , plastics are used to make durable, easy-to-mold, lightweight housings and internal components for other industries as well. The preferred way to assemble plastic parts is through adhesive bonding rather than mechanical fastening. Adhesive joints are aesthetically pleasing and free from deformations due
  • Laminated Plastics
    standard grades, based on National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) specifications. Laminated plastics are available in sheet, tube, and rod shapes that are cut and/or machined for various end uses. The same base materials are also used in molded-laminated and molded-macerated parts
  • How to develop a soft touch
    tensions the 2005 Mustang convertible top against the sheet-metal body panels to seal against the rear-deck lid. The TPV, from Zeon Chemicals L.P., Louisville, Ky., has a rubberlike appearance that closely matches the Mustang's other weather/body seals. Phillips Plastics Corp., Hudson Wis., helped
  • Polyester
    glass-fiber-reinforced compounds - is more varied than with any other type of plastic. Methods for producing polyester/glass-fiber (FRP) parts include hand lay-up and spray-up for small to moderate quantities of large parts; com- pression molding from sheet-molding compound or from glass-fiber