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Rotational molding refers to a plastic manufacturing technique that creates hollow stress-free product lines. The process utilizes high temperatures and bi axial rotation to come up with seamless, one piece products that have a variety of shapes, colors and sizes. This technique is also known as rotomolding or rotocasting. Sometimes the term slush molding is used for certain liquid vinyl styles.
The feature that makes this different from other plastic manufacturing processes because no pressure is required. It also has few rivals when it comes down to the production of large hollow products which are durable and inexpensive.There is a wide variety of products that are produced by this process including big water tanks, automobile items, complex molded medical items, leisure equipment, toys, canoes, industrial equipment among many others.This is due to the flexibility in regards to style and shapes that the process creates
Benefits of Using Rotomolding to Manufacture Plastic Products
- – Relatively low tooling costs.
When compared to other plastic manufacturing processes in Adamstown PA 19501, it is a cheaper way of making plastics. This is because apart from the fact that no pressure is required, the cost of mold preparation is low.
- – A wide array of design options.
There is no limit to the kind of design one may want to create. The rotomolding process therefore allows for the manufacturing of products that have complex shapes for different purposes.
- – Size.
The process provides room for the manufacturing of products of any size, large or small. As mentioned earlier, it has few competitors when it comes to the making of large tanks at low costs.
- – Low risk.
Due to the low costs of creating a mould, the process allows for test runs before one can decide whether to do mass production. It therefore minimizes the risk of losing a lot of investment.
- – Durable products.
The process allows for even coating of the mould with the heated polymer, giving the product a wall with uniform thickness. It also gives the option of double coating for increased durability. Sometimes metal inserts are placed inside the mould to further strengthen the product.
- – Environmentally friendly.
There is no waste that could have a negative impact on the environment because the products that cannot be used are reground and reused as polymer.
Examples of Products Made by Rotational Molding
Rotocasting is a very versatile process, making it possible to create a variety of products for different industries.
- Agricultural industry– From cattle feeders, water troughs, spray tanks etc.
- Automotive industry– Filler tubes, dash boards, arm rests, sun visors, air conditioner duct work etc.
- Furniture– We have plastic cabinets, chairs and tables made from this form of moulding.
There are numerous Pennsylvania plastic products also that have been made for the marine industry, lighting, waste storage and transportation, kayaks etc.
Few Disadvantages – There are nominal disadvantages that have been associated with rotocasting. For instance:
- – The process is relatively slow when compared to injection moulding.
- – There is a limitation when it comes to the type of raw material you can use. Only poly based and nylon polymers can be used.
- – The process comes with an increased cost because the polymer has to be ground to powder form before use.
These limitations are often overlooked considering that the process is still relatively cheap and offers more in terms of variety when it comes to the finished range of products.
Remember – There are new developments and discoveries that are being made as the world of plastic manufacturing in Adamstown Pennsylvania continuously. For instance, tests are being done to see whether there are other materials that can be used for this process. But so far, rotomoulding offers a good option for the production of a wide range of inexpensive plastic products.
The Roto-Molding Process in Detail
This molding process has been used since ancient times for creatingvseverl products. Egyptians for example, utilized rotocasting methods in the producing of ceramics. The Swiss were also using this rotation design to generate hollow chocolate eggs. Some plastic products in the USA were manufactured utilizing this procedure some time between 1940 and 1950. The process has however taken long to catch on because it was looked at to be a relatively slow process
1. Mould preparation.
A predetermined quantity of polymer in powder form is filled into a hollow mould. The mould is usually made from cast aluminium or sheet steel component. The colour preferred for the finished product is pre compounded into the polymer. The most commonly used powder resin is polythene, but polyvinyl chloride and nylon can also be used in this design of plastic manufacturing.
Preheating of the oven follows, and it can be done by either conduction, convection or sometimes radiation. It is heated up to temperatures between 500-700F. The mould with the powdered polymer is then secured and put within the oven.
2. The heat and fusion phase.
Once inside the oven, the mold is rotated on two axis so the powdered polymer liquefies from the heat and coats the inside if the mold. The rotation is done slowly, about 20 rotations per min. One thing that is important at this point is the period of time the mould will spend within the oven. If it stays to long, the product will lose stability and strength, creating a poor product. If it is removed from the oven too early, the polymer will not have liquefied correctly, which produces bubbles in the finished product line.
3. Mould cooling.
When the material has sufficiently spent the correct amount of time in the oven, it is then taken out for cooling. This can be done by air or water, or sometimes a mixture of both which generates a cool mist. When the material cools, it shrinks somewhat for ease of extraction from the mould. This is an additional procedure that depends upon a lot on the correct timing, since rapid cooling reduces the material too rapidly, causing warping of the material.
4. The unloading or de-molding step.
When the material within te mould has cooled successfully, the person managing the procedure can then take out the finished product from the mold. The procedure is repeated from the beginning, giving a series of exact items.
For more information on the different rotational molding options offered for the Adamstown PA 19501 area, please call our toll free number 866-971-7861 or fill out the form on the right for a consultation!
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