There are a few elements of any plastic injection molding order you make that will play an important role in the final quality of your products, and one of these that cannot be overlooked is the selection of proper resin material. There are a number of different plastic resins out there, each with its own qualities and benefits, and working with your manufacturing professionals to select the ideal one is vital.
At EnviroTech Custom Injection Molders, we’re happy to offer plastic injection molding services across numerous industries, from the energy sector to defense, chemical processing, mining, and a huge number of additional areas. When it comes to selection of a resin, one of the key areas we’ll walk you through during any injection molding process is the specific qualities of a given resin that you may be prioritizing. What are some of the most common such qualities, and how could they impact your final choice? Here’s a simple rundown.
One of the single most important qualities of any resin you’re considering is its tensile strength. Also sometimes called ultimate tensile strength or simply ultimate strength, this measures how much stress the material can take before breaking, and it’s a critical metric in any application where your products will face potential wear and tear. If a material is going to be subject to high temperatures or harsh chemicals, for instance, you’ll want to prioritize a resin with high tensile strength to avoid early breakage.
Tension strength is a major priority for products in the automotive industry, as well as any that will see regular outdoor use. For instance, if you’re looking at resins for manufacturing housing or construction materials, a resin with good tension strength is vital to ensure long-term durability.
Another form of strength that matters in some applications is impact strength, which measures a material’s ability to resist shattering when hit with a blunt force. This is important in any application where products may be dropped or otherwise subject to sudden forces, and it’s often a key consideration for products like electronic components or medical devices that must resist being dropped during use.
Another important quality of any resin is its temperature tolerance. Some plastics can become soft and malleable at high temperatures, which obviously isn’t ideal if your products are going to be used in such an environment. Others may become brittle, meaning they’re more susceptible to shattering or breaking.
Some plastics are designed specifically for high-temperature environments, so if you need a resin that can withstand regular exposure to such conditions, be sure to ask your potential manufacturers about what they offer. In many cases, it may be necessary to coat products made from a less temperature-resistant resin to protect them, and your manufacturer can advise you on the best way to do this.
The term “flexural modulus” might be confusing to some of our readers, so let’s simplify it: This term tends to speak to elasticity and the degree to which a material can be bent when force is applied. In other words, it measures a material’s ability to “bounce back” after being bent or otherwise subject to force.
This quality is important in many applications where products will be put under stress or strain, and it’s often a top priority for products like toys or sports equipment that need to retain their shape despite being subject to rough handling. Think about a product like a baseball bat, for instance: It needs to be able to withstand the impact of being hit by a ball travelling at high speeds, and a resin with good flexural modulus will help it do just that.
Especially in applications where insulation or heat tolerance is important, another key quality to consider is heat deflection. This measures the point at which a material will start to warp or deform when exposed to high temperatures, and it’s often an important consideration for products that need to maintain a certain shape or size.
For instance, products like dishes or cookware need to be able to withstand being heated to high temperatures without warping, and a resin with good heat deflection properties can help make that possible. In some cases, it may be necessary to coat products made from a less heat-resistant resin to protect them, and your manufacturer can advise you on the best way to do this.
In other applications, water absorption can be an important quality to consider. Some plastics are designed to resist absorbing water, which is obviously important in applications where products will be regularly exposed to moisture or even submerged. This might include products like pipes or tubing, for instance.
Other plastics are designed to absorb water, which can be beneficial in applications like agriculture where plants need to be watered. In such cases, it’s often necessary to use a resin that’s specifically designed for water absorption, so be sure to ask your potential manufacturer about what they offer.
This is just a brief overview of some of the key qualities to consider when selecting a resin for your injection molding needs, but working with your manufacturer, you can identify the ideal material for your particular products.
For more information about this or any other aspect of injection molding, don’t hesitate to contact the team at EnviroTech Custom Injection Molders today.