We have already explained what thermoforming is in a previous blog post. But we are sure you want to know more. What are the benefits of thermoforming? What types of plastics can be thermoformed? What kinds of thermoforming molds are there? These are just a few of the frequently asked questions (FAQ) that we will cover today. So let’s dive right in.
What are the benefits of thermoforming?
Thermoforming is a cost-effective and efficient way to produce many plastic products. Common products made by thermoforming include bathtubs, shower stalls and boat hulls.
What sort of features can be accomplished with thermoforming?
There are numerous cosmetic features that can be achieved with thermoforming, including:
• Formed-in texture
• Formed-in logos
• Formed-in Hardware
• Custom colors
In Thermoforming, why can only one side of the plastic be manipulated?
Only the side against the mold can be controlled with close tolerances. Tolerance requirements on the side away from the mold are addressed by trimming, fabrication and assembly.
What type of plastics can be thermoformed?
The plastics that work best with thermoforming are:
• acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene copolymer (ABS)
• high-impact polystyrene (HIPS)
• high density polyethylene (HDPE)
• high molecular weight polyethylene (HMWPE)
• polypropylene (PP)
• polyvinyl chloride (PVC)
• polymethyl methacrylate (or “acrylic”) (PMMA)
• polyethylene terephthalate modified with CHDM (PETG)
What types of molds are there?
1. Machined Aluminum: Typically built for shallow molds with small draw ratios, these molds are mounted on a temperature control base to control temperature during the forming process.
2. Cast Aluminum: These molds are formed at a foundry, with the temperature controls cast into the back and sides of the mold. These are typically used for parts with large draw ratios.
3. Composite: These molds, which have a limited life, are for vacuum forming only and are not temperature controlled.
For more information on thermoforming please visit our website or give us a call. A.S.S.T. is your one stop supplier for your next commercial interior architectural project.
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