Avoid Common Plastic Fabrication Issues with These Five Ideas

December 13, 2019 1:03 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Plastic is a temperamental material, and it takes experience to fabricate it correctly. As your plastic fabrication specialists in Utah, D&D Plastics knows the techniques that will create your end product without the common pitfalls. If you do not hone particular skills, your efforts at plastic fabrication are likely to generate frustration more than products. Here are five ideas on avoiding plastic fabrication issues:

  • Check the heat tolerance: Heat is necessary for machining, but too much of it can lead to failure. Machining any material, including plastic, produces friction and, in turn, produces excessive heat. This may make your plastic malleable, but also impossible to work with when it is time to mold it into an actual product. To avoid this issue, choose a variety with high heat tolerance. Rulon, Torlon and Meldin all fall under this category.
  • Adapt to tolerance: Never assume all your material will behave the same. Even if the material has a high heat tolerance, it may not behave as you expect. Do not forget that materials expand during machining and then shrink to their original size. You may have to stop machining and let the material cool down before a final cutting. Watch the tendencies of your material and adapt your methods to it.
  • Control expansion: Fabricated plastic created in a warm climate will behave differently when it is used in a colder climate. When you choose the material, you must consider its ultimate operating temperature. Otherwise, you risk part failure and uncontrolled expansion. Plastics with a tendency to expand the most also have a lower melt temperature, which could be disastrous if the final product operates in a hot environment. Understand applications to prevent these unwanted developments.
  • Sharpen your tools or replace them: You want a smooth surface that is free of burrs and other evidence of machining. Grinding, milling, drilling and turning all work contrary to a smooth surface unless you use sharpened tools. You also need to consider the speed and feed, as well as the temperature. However, in most cases, using well-maintained tools makes the most difference in producing smooth surfaces.
  • Know your limits: It is not always possible to perform all the fabrication on your own. The best tools and machinery are often cost prohibitive, and those who can operate this equipment are in high demand and need to be paid accordingly. If you seek a good return on your investment, it is likely a good idea to outsource certain stages of production. Machine shops that already invested in CNC, tuning and milling equipment and have skilled fabricators on staff are ready for your project. Outsourcing is often less expensive than expected and creates a better-quality product.

If you seek to outsource your plastic fabrication, look no further than D&D Plastics. We offer more than 35 years of experience in plastic fabrication, design and repairs. As plastic fabrication specialists in Utah, there are no jobs too big or too small for our team. Contact us today to see what we can do for you.

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