Painting with a Broad Brush
“Plastic” is a general term used to describe a variety of products that doesn’t provide specification. Knowing that, it’s important to understand what types of plastics exist, how they function, and how to use them correctly, especially if you are in the custom plastic manufacturing business. We’ve listed three plastic resins and their best use cases below.
Among the plastic resins that every machine operator should keep on hand is Acetal. In addition to being highly heat resistant, this product is also wear-resistant. Because it can be used in temperatures up to 160 degrees Celsius (320 degrees Fahrenheit) it’s perfect for extreme environments.
Acetal (polyoxymethylene) homopolymers, such as Delrin, are commonly used in inexpensive components that withstand harsh conditions. Acetal plastics are typically supplied in sheets or extruded bars, so machine processes such as milling and turning are ideal. Additionally, it can be injected or extruded in its granulated form.
Benefits of Acetal Plastic
- Easy to Machine
- Durable Structure
- Great Electrical Insulation
- Low Friction
Delrin is a thermoplastic that can be machinable and can last in harsh environments for decades. Delrin’s durability and resistance to wear make it an ideal material to replace metal parts, gears, door systems, conveyor belts, and other high-load mechanical parts in many industries, such as in healthcare. It has excellent colorability, and it can be molded into extremely precise shapes, so it is also ideal for projects that require precision, such as surgical instruments or musical instruments.
TL;DR- Acetal’s tensile strength, stiffness, creep resistance, fatigue resistance, and impact resistance are higher than that of other plastics. These combined mechanical properties in a single material enable thinner, lighter, shorter molding cycles, along with potential cost reductions.
Nylon is a thermoplastic material made from synthetic polymers. As the first commercially successful polymer, it is now used in a number of applications including textiles, ropes, and mechanical parts for engineering.
The modern world has a variety of uses for nylon. The strong and durable material is used in making clothes, tires, and other mechanical items, ropes, and threads, as well as injection-molded parts that are used in vehicles and machines. Nylon’s durability, strength, and elasticity make it a popular material. When compared to most plastics, nylon can withstand abuse without breaking down. Since the parts of car engines often come into contact with toxic substances, like oil spills, and are constantly exposed to high temperatures during use, this material is an excellent choice.
Benefits of Nylon Plastic
- Easy to Machine
- High Strength Under Stress
TL;DR- Nylon is durable, elastic, and has a wide range of applications. Nylon is the ideal polymer if you are looking for a lightweight, moldable material.
When heated, ABS plastic liquefies. ABS plastic is a thermoplastic polymer that’s amorphous and thermoplastic. A thermoplastic becomes liquid at 221 degrees Fahrenheit, in contrast to a thermoset that burns rather than melts because they can’t form long chains during heat processing. Its ability to melt readily without substantial degradation is one of its notable characteristics. As a result, they can be easily injection molded and subsequently recycled.
ABS plastic is known for its durability and low cost. In addition to its chemical corrosion resistance, ABS is also resistant to physical impacts. Easily moldable, it is an excellent material for toys and small-scale products requiring intricate shapes with great detail.
Benefits of ABS Plastic
- Easily dyeable
- Structural durability
- Easily moldable
- Low melting point
TL;DR- ABS plastics are as durable as the other two plastics on this list. The moldability of the material makes it ideal for manufacturing small, intricate parts. Injection molding is its most practical application.
Success in Custom Plastic Manufacturing
The greater your understanding of the materials you’re using, the more likely you are to succeed. When preparing to custom manufacture plastic products, be sure to do your research beforehand and find the best plastic for the job.