Material selection is a key element to achieve your finished component and ensure that it is fit for purpose. There are many material grades and types available and they are all developed to meet specific needs. Therefore there is not any one material that would suit all injection moulded applications.
It is essential in the development stages that your material requirements are not over specified as you will inevitably incur greater production costs for the more technically advanced material grades. If your component is a fairly simple part that will not be exposed to any extreme elements you do not need to run production in a high engineering grade of thermoplastic.
The thermoplastic material that is selected for your injection moulded component needs to meet the specification of the product. Should you require assistance with the material selection process we can provide a wealth of in-house knowledge which is enhanced through our supply chain network.
Materials generally have different properties that will affect the strength and function of the final part, these properties also dictate the parameters used in processing these materials. Each material requires a different set of processing parameters in the injection moulding process including the melt temperature, fill speed and pressure and mould temperature.
What is a thermoplastic?
A thermoplastic is a plastic material typically known as a polymer and becomes pliable or moldable above a specific temperature and solidifies upon cooling. A thermoplastic can be reshaped by heating and therefore are typically used to produce parts by injection molding.
Materials are processed in their raw form as small pellets and can be mixed with dyes to produce colours and mixed with additives to enhance the materials properties.
A small sample of the materials we process and their properties:
Lightweight, heat resistance, high chemical resistance, scratch resistance, natural waxy appearance, tough and stiff and low cost. Used Used for covers, trims, caps, crates, handles, housings
Lightweight, tough and flexible, excellent chemical resistance, natural waxy appearance and low cost Used for kitchenware, housings, covers and containers
Tough and stiff, excellent chemical resistance, natural waxy appearance, low cost Kitchenware, housings, covers and containers Used for chair seats, housings, covers and containers
Strong, flexible, low mould shrinkage (tight tolerances) chemical resistance, electroplating capability, naturally opaque and low/medium cost Used for boxes, gauges, housings, inhalers and end caps
Very tough, temperature resistance, dimensional stability, transparent and high cost Used for containers, housings, light covers, reflectors, safety helmets and shields
Used for strong, rigid, excellent fatigue resistance, excellent creep resistance, chemical resistance, moisture resistance, naturally opaque white and low/medium cost Used for bearings, cams, gears, handles, plumbing components, rollers, rotors, slide guides, valves
High strength, fatigue resistant, chemical resistant, low creep, low friction, almost opaque/white and medium/high cost Used for bearings, bushings, gears, rollers, wheels
Very high strength, heat resistance, brown and very high cost Used for Bearings, covers, fuel system components, guides, switches and shields
Rigid, heat resistance, chemical resistance and medium/high cost Used for automotive (filters, handles, pumps) bearings, cams, electrical components (connectors, sensors) gears, housings, rollers, switches, valves
Strong, thermal stability, chemical resistance, abrasion resistance, low moisture absorption and very high cost Used for aircraft components, electrical connectors, pump impellers, seals
Tough, flexible and high cost Used for bushings, electrical components, seals, washers