Developing products has never been easy. With numerous techniques being practiced across industries, moulding is still among the popular options. Why still? Numerous options have presented themselves since the emergence of moulding. These include the 3D printer which promised to disrupt the industry. However, as time showed, the 3D printer is more suitable for ad hoc and smaller parts in prototyping processes, not for large scale manufacturing. When it comes to manufacturing, moulding is still the way to go. In this article we will discuss structural foam moulding, an innovative technique.
What is structural foam moulding?
When using foam to conduct the moulding, the mould continuous to expand when injected. This holds true until the plastic has solidified. The upside of this technique is the fact that the pressure is distributed equally across the plastic, reducing the tension present in the final product. This makes structural foam moulding a beneficial method over traditional moulding techniques.
Thickness of the walls of the mould
Compared to traditional methods, foam moulding allows for thicker walls to be created. This can be beneficial for a broad range of products. Besides that, there is a possibility to have different levels of thickness across the mould. Perfect for complex products that are inherently difficult to produce without advanced moulds.
Think about the design
There are way more designs possible when working with this technique. This makes it a suitable option for companies who are looking to differentiatie their products from others. For example, by introducing an innovative design or by creating a superior product. Designers should note that the product can have a ‘foamy’ finish. Meaning that painting could be necessary to make the product aesthetically appealing.
How to develop these moulds
For organisations, it is often not possible to create these moulds without a solid partner. There are many companies that specialise in the technology. Partners can be selected based on costs, business needs and expertise in the respective fields. If you are looking for a mould, think about the needed complexity and business impact. If it concerns a crucial component it makes sense to go with a leading provider of moulding technology. In case you want to experiment or look for a strategic partner, a smaller player in the market could do the trick.
One of the companies active in the moulding space is hsv-tmp. The company based in The Netherlands is working with organisations in Europe and beyond to deliver high-quality and complex moulds, including the structural foam moulding discussed in this article. As pricing is not readily available among manufacturers, you can enquire about the possibilities and see what a partnership can mean for both firms involved.