You are on page 1of 174

Engineering Polymers

Part and Mold Design
THERMOPLASTICS

A Design Guide

INTRODUCTION

A product of the Bayer Design The manual focuses primarily on This publication
Contact your Bayerwas
sales written to assist
representative
Engineering Services Group, this manual plastic part and mold design, but also Bayer's customers in the design
for copies of these publications. and
manufacture of products made from
is primarily intended as a reference includes chapters on the design process;
the Bayer line of thermoplastic
source for part designers and molding designing for assembly; machining and This publication
engineering was written
resins. Thesespecifically
resins
engineers working with Bayer thermo- finishing; and painting, plating, and include:
to assist our customers in the design and
plastic resins. The table of contents and decorating. For the most part, it excludes manufacture of products made from the
- Makrolon® polycarbonate
index were carefully constructed to information covered in the following Bayer line of thermoplastic engineering
- Apec® high-heat polycarbonate
guide you quickly to the information Bayer companion publications: resins. These resins include:
- Bayblend® polycarbonate/ABS
you need either by topic or by keyword. blend
The content was also organized to allow Material Selection: Thermoplastics and •- Makrolon ® Polycarbonate
Makroblend® polycarbonate/
the manual to function as an educational Polyurethanes: A comprehensive look at polyester blend
text for anyone just entering the field of material testing and the issues to consider •- Apec
Texin® and Desmopan®
® High-Heat Polycarbonate
plastic-part manufacturing. Concepts when selecting a plastic material. thermoplastic polyurethane
and terminology are introduced pro- •For
Bayblend ® Polycarbonate/
information on these materials,
gressively for logical cover-to-cover Joining Techniques: Includes infor- ABS Blend
please call 1-800-662-2927 or visit
reading. mation and guidelines on the methods http://www.
for joining plastics including mechanical •BayerMaterialScienceNAFTA.com.
Makroblend® Polycarbonate Blend
fasteners, welding techniques, inserts,
snap fits, and solvent and adhesive • Triax® Polyamide/ABS Blend
bonding. The following additional products
highlighted in this publication are now
• Lustran® and Novodur® ABS
part of LANXESS Corporation:
Snap-Fit Joints for Plastics: Contains
the engineering formulas and worked •- Lustran ® SAN
Cadon® SMA
examples showing how to design snap- - Centrex® ASA, AES and ASA/AES
fit joints for Bayer thermoplastic resins. •weatherable
Cadon® SMA polymers
- Durethan® polyamide 6 and 66, and
amorphous polyamide
• Centrex® ASA, AES and ASA/AES
- Lustran® and Novodur® ABS
- Weatherable
Lustran® SAN Polymers
- Pocan® PBT polyester
•- Durethan ® Polyamide 6 and 66,
Triax® polyamide/ABS blend
and Amorphous Polyamide
For information on these products,
please ®call LANXESS in North
•America
Texin and Desmopan®
at 1-800-LANXESS or visit:
Thermoplastic Polyurethane
http://techcenter.lanxess.com/sty/
•americas/en/home/index.jsp
Pocan® PBT Polyester for
styrenic resins
http://techcenter.lanxess.com/scp/
americas/en/home/index.jsp for
polyamide resins

1

Most of the design principles covered in Bayer CAMPUS: Software containing In addition to design manuals, Bayer
this manual apply to all of these resins. single and multi-point data that was Corporation provides design assistance
When discussing guidelines or issues generated according to uniform standards. in other forms such as seminars and
for a specific resin family, we reference Allows you to search grades of Bayer technical publications. Bayer also offers
these materials either by their Bayer resins that meet a particular set of a range of design engineering services
trade names or by their generic performance requirements. to its qualified customers. Contact your
polymer type. Bayer sales representative for more
www.bayer.com/polymers-usa: Bayer information on these other services.
The material data scattered throughout Web site containing product information
the chapters is included by way of on-line.
example only and may not reflect the
most current testing. In addition, much This manual provides general information
of the data is generic and may differ and guidelines. Because each product
from the properties of specific resin application is different, always conduct
grades. For up-to-date performance data a thorough engineering analysis of your
for specific Bayer resins, contact your design, and prototype test new designs
Bayer sales representative or refer to the under actual in-use conditions. Apply
following information sources: appropriate safety factors, especially
in applications in which failure could
Bayer Engineering Polymers Properties cause harm or injury.
Guide: Contains common single-point
properties by resin family and grade.

Bayer Plastics Product Information
Bulletin: Lists information and properties
for a specific material grade.

2

TABLE OF CONTENTS Chapter 1 Chapter 2 PART DESIGN PROCESS: CONCEPT TO FINISHED PART GENERAL DESIGN 7 Design Process 19 Wall Thickness 8 Defining Plastic Part Requirements 22 Flow Leaders and Restrictors 8 Mechanical Loading 24 Ribs 8 Temperature 24 Rib Design 8 Chemical Exposure 24 Rib Thickness 8 Electrical Performance 26 Rib Size 8 Weather Resistance 27 Rib Location and Numbers 8 Radiation 27 Bosses 8 Appearance 30 Gussets 9 Agency Approvals 30 Sharp Corners 9 Life Expectancy 32 Draft 9 Dimensional Tolerances 33 Holes and Cores 9 Processing 34 Undercuts 9 Production Quantities 34 Slides and Cores 9 Cost Constraints 36 Louvers and Vents 10 Assembly 37 Molded-In Threads 10 Thermoplastic Processing Methods 40 Lettering 10 Injection Molding 40 Tolerances 11 Extrusion 42 Bearings and Gears 12 Thermoforming 12 Blow Molding 13 Rotomolding 13 Optimizing Product Function 14 Consolidation 14 Hardware 14 Finish 15 Markings and Logos 15 Miscellaneous 15 Reducing Manufacturing Costs 15 Materials 16 Overhead 17 Labor 17 Scrap and Rework 17 Prototype Testing 3 .

and Flash Removal 70 Wall Thickness 71 Ribs 73 Long-Term Loading 76 Designing for Impact 78 Fatigue Applications 80 Thermal Loading 4 . Blanking.Chapter 3 Chapter 4 STRUCTURAL DESIGN DESIGN FOR ASSEMBLY 45 Structural Considerations In Plastics 83 Part Consolidation 46 Stiffness 84 Mechanical Fasteners 46 Viscoelasticity 85 Snap-Fit Joints 48 Stress-Strain Behavior 88 Welding and Bonding 50 Molding Factors 89 Ultrasonic Welding 51 Short-Term Mechanical Properties 90 Vibration and Hot-Plate Welding 51 Tensile Properties 91 Spin Welding 52 Tensile Modulus 91 Solvent and Adhesive Bonding 52 Tensile Stress at Yield 92 Retention Features 52 Tensile Stress at Break 92 Alignment Features 53 Ultimate Strength 94 Orientation 53 Poisson's Ratio 94 Expansion Differences 53 Compressive Properties 94 Tolerances 53 Flexural Modulus 53 Coefficient of Friction 54 Long-Term Mechanical Properties Chapter 5 MACHINING AND FINISHING 54 Creep Properties 56 Stress Relaxation 97 Drilling and Reaming 56 Fatigue Properties 99 Tapping 58 Structural Design Formulas 99 Sawing 58 Use of Moduli 100 Punching. and Die Cutting 59 Stress and Strain Limits 101 Milling 60 Uniaxial Tensile and Compressive Stress 101 Turning and Boring 61 Bending and Flexural Stress 102 Laser Machining 65 Shear Stress 103 Filing 66 Torsion 103 Sanding 67 Designing for Stiffness 103 Polishing and Buffing 67 Part Shape 104 Trimming. Finishing.

AND DECORATING MOLD DESIGN 105 Painting 121 Mold Basics 105 Types of Paints 121 Types of Molds 106 Paint Curing 124 Mold Bases and Cavities 106 Paint-Selection Considerations 125 Molding Undercuts 107 Spray Painting 128 Part Ejection 108 Other Painting Methods 130 Mold Venting 108 Masking 130 Parting-Line Vents 109 Other Design Considerations for Painting 131 Vent Placement 109 In-Mold Decorating 133 Sprues.Chapter 6 Chapter 7 PAINTING. Runners. and Gates 110 Film-Insert Molding 133 Sprues 111 Metallic Coatings 134 Runners 111 Electroplating 137 Runners for Multicavity Molds 112 Design Considerations for Electroplating 140 Gates 113 Molding Considerations for Electroplating 144 Other Gate Designs 114 Vacuum Metallization 145 Gate Optimization 115 Design Considerations for Vacuum Metallization 147 Gate Position 115 EMI/RFI Shielding 149 Hot-Runner Systems 115 Design Considerations for EMI/RFI Shielding 149 Hot-Runner Designs 116 Printing 149 Hot-Runner Gates 118 Labels and Decals 151 Valve Gates 119 Texture 151 Thermal Expansion and Isolation 152 Flow Channel Size 153 Mold Cooling 154 Mold-Cooling Considerations 155 Cooling-Channel Placement 158 Cooling-Line Configuration 159 Coolant Flow Rate 160 Mold Shrinkage 162 Mold Metals 163 Surface Treatments 164 Mold Cost and Quality APPENDICES 165 Index 169 Part Design Checklist 5 . PLATING.

6 .

manufacturing personnel. and capital equipment. ment. When designing processing step and related cost in one economic concerns. such as cost of plastic parts. selecting an appropri- Solicit simultaneous input from the var. accounts for members’ material cost. or for simplifying and improving the various manufacturing steps such as mold construction. Your chance assembly operations and related costs. reducing manufacturing ious “players” early in product develop. including conceptual total product cost. in this chapter. and finishing. focus attention on total product cost loading and ultraviolet stability. such as color. Too often designs pass sequentially from concept development to manufacturing steps with features that needlessly complicate production and add cost. produce greater savings in and part consolidation — are discussed finishers. of diverse players. snap latches and nesting features may design concerns — such as agency materials suppliers. processors. coupled with other designers. any one person. of producing a product that successfully Likewise. processing parameters. processing. Often adding a transparency. costs. successful plastic product design and rather than just the costs of individual aesthetic needs. evaluating process options. mold makers. your team should consist area produces a greater reduction in materials. you must consider these factors early in When designing and developing parts. specifying a more-expensive competes in the marketplace increases resin with molded-in color and UV when your strategy takes full advantage resistance may increase your raw- of team strengths. Chapter 1 PART DESIGN PROCESS: CONCEPT TO FINISHED PART Many factors affect plastic-part design. same time. increase part and mold costs. while eliminating limitations. level of production requires team effort and a items or processes. For example. such as mechanical Like a successful play in football. ate material. and conducting prototype testing. before many aspects of the design For the reasons stated above. adding These factors. and avoids overburdening painting costs. and well-developed strategy. strategy development and make focus on defining and maximizing part adjustments based upon input from the function and appearance. labor. actual part requirements. changed. and decorators. these have been determined and cannot be efforts should proceed simultaneously. and tactile response. DESIGN PROCESS Early input from various design and Among these factors are: functional manufacturing groups also helps to requirements. As the designer. assembly. design engineers. Accommodate suggestions for enhancing product performance. 7 . specifying various people on the design team. stylists. and at the approval.

and shipping. If your Note required electrical property values part will be exposed to a radiation Mechanical Loading and nature of electrical loading. a need for transparency greatly reduces the number of potential plastics. list materials that are known a UV-stabilized resin. heat gain from will be exposed during manufacturing. lubricants. and creep resistance to name a tive parts such as mirror housings must plastic part to weather at the same rate few — vary with temperature. moisture. A variety of artificial sources — such actual use. impacts. consider painting it. high-intensity dis- and material performance including charge lamps. or specifying reference. Temperature. and vibrational or your part requires EMI shielding or Appearance cyclic loads that could lead to fatigue. al products may only have to satisfy the will influence both part design and including mold releases. printing dyes. and UV sun especially if the part needs high clarity. Look at all aspects of part as fluorescent lights. modulus. Determine if loads. Temperature exposure affect plastic parts’ properties Color may also play an important role. your requirements 8 . The end-use of a product Plastics must often match the color of Many material properties in plastics — determines the type of weather resistance other materials used in parts of an impact strength. and perform in the full range of weather as well as temperatures to which the part conditions. Remember that temperature requirement considerably impact resistance generally diminishes higher than maximum expected temper- at lower temperatures. these requirements. paints.DEFINING PLASTIC PART Chemical Exposure may be less severe if your part is REQUIREMENTS exposed to weather elements only Plastic parts encounter a wide variety of occasionally. tensile required. and loads: Plastic parts are often sub. Make sure that these chemicals are Radiation jected to harsher conditions during compatible with your selected material manufacturing and shipping than in and final part. Weather Resistance example. Additionally. For example. Clearly material and part-design issues. sun on dark surfaces may raise the upper finishing. UL testing. For source. and automotive fluids. consider more than vents. Ascertain long-term loads that could Aesthetic requirements can entail many cause creep or stress relaxation. which and in the end-use environment. outdoor Thoroughly ascertain and evaluate your chemicals both during manufacturing Christmas decorations and other season- part and material requirements. Carefully evaluate all types of mechanical to have sufficient electrical performance loading including short-term static in your application. When evaluating degreasers. and gamma sterilization the following. cleaning sol. Some applications require the strength. Consider withstand continuous outdoor exposure as other materials in an assembly. and appearance. end-use conditions cooking greases. limited material selection. For identify impact requirements. exposure. the full range of end-use temperatures. just the intended. Electrical Performance units — emit radiation that can yellow and/or degrade many plastics. For instance. Conversely. cutting oils. external automo. atures. requirements for their specific. adhesives. assembly.

material choice. especially if Life Expectancy influence decisions. from high-gloss to heavy-matte. look. in-mold decorating or vacuum compliance and approval from and bow. particularly Agriculture (USDA) for plastics in for small-order quantities. Chapter 1 PART DESIGN PROCESS: CONCEPT TO FINISHED PART continued In resins. Life methods. (NSF) for plastics in example. runner. Consider the effect include Underwriters’ Laboratories of load. such as hours in boiling water — or Many part designs must include mark. Determine a reasonable Plastic-part cost can be particularly molded directly onto the part surface life expectancy for your part. Determine if regrind issues. including processing the product is part of a component sys. Chapter 6. Many applications have features Agency Approvals requiring tight tolerances for proper fit and function. Military dimensions. applications with food and bodily-fluid 9 . parts food-processing and potable-water geometry that is particularly difficult with metallic finishes may require applications. If so. Always check for to fill. For certain meat and poultry equipment. the decorating methods discussed in Be careful to consider total system cost. Generally for greater production Among other things. note special surface textures for parts. tem or existing product family. and control labels. or would be prone to warpage painting. Note all Many functional parts need to meet assembly techniques. and Determine if your part design places colors and effects. For to be painted or decorated in the mold. Production Quantities Styling concerns may dictate the prod. condition — as in number of gamma Cost Constraints instructions. warnings. Some mating parts require Government and private agencies have only that mating features have the same specifications and approval cycles for dimensions. and ejector-pin — as in years of outdoor exposure — streamline the process and optimize positioning. time at a specific set of conditions — productivity early in the design process. important. rating and thickness. certain life-cycle expectations. and finishing cosmetic and non-cosmetic surfaces. you should spend money to influence gate. temperature. Address all part-ejection and metallization. methods. sterilization cycles or snap-arm Determine if these features can be deflections. your part requires flame resistance in Photoetching the mold steel can impart accordance with UL 94. will the part need a mold Depending upon the application. and feel. and creep on (UL) for electrical devices. Dimensional Tolerances not just part and material cost. some parts may need National Sanitation Foundation Testing special demands on processing. Others must have absolute many plastic parts. custom colors generally cost contact. repetitions of an applied load or ings or designs such as logos. These agencies size and tolerance. Over-specification of (MIL) for military applications. Inc. Laboratory. The number of parts needed may uct shape. these areas may expectancy may involve a time duration quantities. mold design. United States Department of Processing more than standard colors. if your molded part comprises or if they must be added using one of all or most of the cost of the final product. Surface finishes range appropriate agencies. Food tolerance can increase product and Drug Administration (FDA) for cost significantly.

Assembly THERMOPLASTIC Injection Molding PROCESSING METHODS Address assembly requirements. Be sure not to overlook any Bayer Corporation. figure 1-1). your design team excellent part-to-part repeatability. as well as limitations. snap-latches. Usually plastic then forms to the shape of the adhesives. State any product development differs depending a wide variety of part sizes. Usually a quick-cycle such as attachments to materials Occasionally. molding. Also do not over-specify your requirements. upon the process. Because parts Injection Molding Figure 1-1 perform as intended. and shape clearly mold as it cools and solidifies (see materials and potential problem areas determine the best process. injection molding can produce with different values of coefficient of itself to more than one process. Note mating part design. 10 . bosses. injection disassembled or if assembly will be used to produce thermoplastic products. such as The most common processing method the number of times the product will be A variety of commercial methods are for Bayer thermoplastics. The assembly methods: screws. must decide which process to pursue and make parts with relatively tight The “Part Requirements and Design early in product development. involves forcing molten automated. List likely or proposed Each has its specific design require. welds. Molds can produce intricate Checklist” in the back of this manual section briefly explains the common features and textures. The injection molding process can quickly produce large quantities of parts in multi-cavity molds. Undercuts and threads usually requirements relevant to your specific application. accommodate linear thermal expansion. needlessly increasing part cost and reducing part competitiveness. as well as structural serves as a guide when developing new processes used for thermoplastics from and assembly elements such as ribs and products. Because large quantities of parts. the costs of over- specification normally go uncorrected. offer recycling requirements. etc. ments. the part concept lends process. size. This tolerances. plastic into molds at high pressure.

such as feet/minute. cooled.000 parts would contribute only $0. The extrusion process produces profile shapes used in the manufacture of window frames.000 mold producing only 1. 11 . mold The injection molding process generally modifications for product design requires large order quantities to offset changes can be very expensive. Chapter 1 PART DESIGN PROCESS: CONCEPT TO FINISHED PART continued Figure 1-2 Extrusion Extrusion In extrusion forming. Additionally. and window frames (see figure 1-2). such as automotive bumpers $50. and solidified. straight profiles. Part features such as holes or notches require secondary operations that add to final cost. Most commonly used for sheet. extrusion also produces profiles used in applications such as road markers. require mold mechanisms that add of each part. require large and expensive parts would contribute $50 to the cost molds and presses. extrusion dies usually contribute little to product cost. ordinarily are reasonably high. Very high mold costs. film. Typically inexpensive for simple profiles. a large parts. For example. and pipe production.10 to part cost.000 and fenders. Production rates. which are cut to length. The same mold producing to mold cost. molten material continuously passes through a die that forms a profile which is sized. automotive trim. measured in linear units. 500. store-shelf price holders. It produces continuous.

Secondary operations can play a large role in part cost. Makrolon polycarbonate resin. Thermoforming can produce large parts (see figure 1-3) on relatively inexpensive molds and equipment. Thermoforming Figure 1-4 Blow Molding Thermoforming creates shapes from a thermoplastic sheet that has been heated to its softening point. Applied vacuum or pressure draws or pushes the softened sheet over an open mold or form where it is then cooled to the conforming shape. materials tend to be costly. The automobile industry has taken advantage of the production efficiency. Because the This large water bottle was blow molded in plastic is purchased as sheet stock. especially along the sides of deep-drawn features. Thermoformed parts usually need to be trimmed to remove excess sheet at the part periphery. The process of stretching the sheet over the form or mold causes thinning of the wall. light weight. Cutouts and holes require secondary machining operations. containers. This process cannot produce features that project from the part surface such as ribs and bosses. Material 12 . and performance of thermoformed engineering thermoplastics for many OEM and after-market products like this tonneau cover. and light globes. Blow Molding Blow molding efficiently produces hollow items such as bottles (see figure 1-4). Mold or form costs for this low-pressure process are much lower than for injection molds of comparable size. appearance. Thermoforming Figure 1-3 selection is limited to extrusion grades.

mold halves pinch the end of a hanging extruded The molding process affords many tube — called a parison — until it opportunities to enhance part function- seals. and needed markings inside the still-soft molded shape is placed inside a mold. uniform material distribution. the mold is cooled to solidify the shape. injection molding. This process eliminates on two perpendicular axes. Cycle times determines mold and equipment costs. While still rotating. 1-5) or hollow yard toys. blown shape then cools as a thin-walled part design are usually insignificant. usually powdered. including Wall thickness can vary throughout the decorative streetlight globes (see figure part and may change with processing. 13 . and that project from the surface such as the process is suited to low-production ribs and bosses. run very long. This features on the open end such as screw continues until all the plastic melts to threads for lids. The parts such as this polycarbonate street with adding functional details to the light globe. As the mold rotates this section. finishing parison. Chapter 1 PART DESIGN PROCESS: CONCEPT TO FINISHED PART continued Design permitting. cally for free. Air pressure applied into the tube ality and reduce product cost. the per-part mold costs associated the walls of the hollow mold. Large production runs which can range as high as those for may require multiple sets of molds. which are discussed in expands the shape into the form of the externally heated. Mold and Blow molding cannot produce features equipment costs are typically low. In PRODUCT FUNCTION extrusion blow molding. Carefully review all Rotomolding aspects of your design with an eye Injection blow molding substitutes a toward optimization. The two most-common types of blow OPTIMIZING molding are extrusion and injection. the process may Figure 1-5 Rotomolding This process is used for hollow shapes also produce hollow shapes such as with large open volumes that promote automotive air ducts and gas tanks. Air pressure applied from thermoplastic resin. molded shape. considerations. form the walls of the hollow. a measured quantity of and hardware consolidation. hollow mold. For exam- expands the tube and forces it against Rotomolding can produce large hollow ple. the resin pinch-off vestige and facilitates molded coats the heated mold surface. which is then and logos. including part molded shape in place of the extruded In rotomolding. Part geometry quantities and large parts. hollow shape. A secondary step removes Molds reproduce many features practi- the vestige at the pinch-off area.

preferably one that does not require surface etching and/or primer. PL look for opportunities to reduce the number of parts in an assembly through part consolidation. 14 . If you must paint. and spacers.Consolidation Figure 1-6 Hinges Within the constraints of good molding practice and practical mold construction. Finish Consider specifying a molded-in color instead of paint. Molded-in hinges can replace metal ones in many applications (see figure 1-6). The cost savings could more than justify any increase in mater- ial cost for a colored material with the required exposure performance. washers. nuts. recycling. Molded-in cable guides perform the same function as metal ones at virtually no added cost. A single molded part can often combine the functionality of two or more parts. and simplifies dismantling for Molded-in hinge features can eliminate the need for hinge hardware. Slight Undercut Hardware Clever part design can often eliminate or reduce the need for hardware fasteners such as screws. select a plastic that paints easily. Reducing hardware lessens material and assembly costs.

15 . etc. Miscellaneous • Use standard colors. and scrap/ • Use ribs. hooks. best material value. stand-offs. cost-reduction step may have on your • Optimize runner systems to product’s performance and overall cost. printing. which are less Materials expensive than custom colors. nesting ribs. Carefully evaluate the effect each for improved visibility. but aligning posts. Within the limits avoid making your selection based guides. Molded-in tech. and and access holes. you must • Compare the price of materials that and enhance product function such as reduce material usage and obtain the meet your product requirements. produce materials. and services offered by Figure 1-7 Molded-In Illustrations the supplier. markings. stops. This molded in schematic is a cost effective alternative to labels or printing. overhead. costs fall into one of four basic categories: niques. lot-to-lot consistency. minimize waste. most wall stock. clips. This section highlights potential supports to provide equivalent very low cost (see figure 1-7). of gloss and texture can increase contrast costs. stiffening features. Chapter 1 PART DESIGN PROCESS: CONCEPT TO FINISHED PART continued Markings and Logos REDUCING of good design and molding practice. and logos — including Although many factors contribute to • Core out unneeded thickness and labels. Mixtures methods for reducing these manufacturing stiffness with less wall thickness. when applied properly. MANUFACTURING COSTS consider some of the following: Secondary methods of adding direc- tions. Look for opportunities to add easily- molded features to simplify assembly To reduce material costs. finger grips. labor. on-time delivery. • Consider other issues such as material quality. and permanent lettering and designs at a rework. stamping. costs of producing plastic parts. decals. upon price alone. — add cost and labor.

and runner system that can increase cooling time. 16 . and molding • Avoiding thick sections in your part efficiency is covered in Chapter 7. complex relationship between mold cost. Some options to consider when Mold costs.Overhead This last option requires careful evaluation to determine if machine- Hourly press rates comprise a significant cost-per-part savings compensate for portion of part cost. can also make up a significant portion of • Maximizing the number of parts part cost. mold quality. The machine overhead cost per part. The rate varies by the added mold cost. usually amortized over a evaluating overhead costs include: specified number of parts or years. • Designing your mold with good cooling and plenty of draft for easy ejection. and • Increasing the number of cavities in a mold to increase hourly production. This is particularly true if produced per hour to reduce the the production quantities are low. region and increases with press size.

Molded prototype parts can degating or place gates in areas that Chapter 2. and are prone to part quality problems. mechanical. To avoid and optimize part design and material rework and minimize scrap generation. to produce parts at the edge of the tolerance range by molding in a narrow processing window. • Adjust the mold steel to produce Simplifying or eliminating prototype parts in the middle of the tolerance testing increases the chance of problems • Design parting lines and kiss-off range. Do not select your mold maker based on price alone. consider the following: quality problems and scrap. and assembly conditions as closely as • Design parts and molds for automatic tions and guidelines outlined in possible. Cheap molds often require costly rework and frequent mold maintenance. and must endure. processing. areas in good condition to avoid flash removal. Good prototype as much as possible. chemical. and You should thoroughly prototype test In the long run. testing duplicates molding. also be tested under the same range of don’t require careful trimming. and environmen- • Avoid specifying tighter tolerances tal conditions that the production parts • Keep parting lines and mold kiss-off than actually needed. • Streamline and/or automate is usually less expensive than trying time-consuming assembly steps. • Follow the part design recommenda. direction. this last suggestion all new designs. when molding parts with that could lead to delays and expensive points to orient flash in a less critical tight tolerances. Chapter 1 PART DESIGN PROCESS: CONCEPT TO FINISHED PART continued Labor Scrap and Rework PROTOTYPE TESTING When looking to maintain or lower your Part and mold design can contribute to Prototype testing allows you to test labor costs. 17 . selection before investing in expensive • Simplify or eliminate manual tasks consider the following: production tooling. modifications in production tooling.

18 .

Generally. increasing wall thickness 19 . These cosmetic appearance. This chapter covers these general design issues. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN While engineering resins are used Critical Thickness Figure 2-1 20 in many diverse and demanding applications. on impact performance. corrugations — to stiffen parts. and Wall thickness strongly influences material cost. 0. moldability. and draft. Give wall thickness careful consideration in the design stage to Both geometric and material factors avoid expensive mold modifications determine the effect of wall thickness and molding problems in production. and features can add sufficient strength. including features — such as ribs. approximately a 33% increase in In some cases. bosses.100 0. The optimum thickness with very little increase in weight. such as strength versus on designing for part stiffness. Increasing wall thickness also adds to part weight. and mechanical performance and feel. cycle times. flat-wall sections. 73°F (23°C) 10 IZOD IMPACT STRENGTH (ft•lb/in) 8 -4°F (-20°C) 6 4 Izod impact 2 strength of Makrolon 0 polycarbonate vs. there are design elements 18 that are common to most plastic parts.180 0. For more information tendencies. 14 as well as others you should consider 140°F (60°C) 12 when designing parts made of thermoplastic resins. or cost. cycle is often a balance between opposing time. THICKNESS (in) WALL THICKNESS stiffness. see weight reduction or durability versus Chapter 3. wall thickness.140 0. 16 gussets. curves.340 thickness at various temperatures. such as ribs. economy.300 0.260 0.220 0. cost. each deflection during impact and increases 10% increase in wall thickness provides the energy required to produce failure. Consider using geometric many key part characteristics. increasing wall thickness reduces In simple.

and be considered as thin-walled parts if thickness. Parts with wall lose impact strength if the thickness • Maintain uniform nominal wall thicknesses greater than 2 mm can also exceeds a limit known as the critical thickness. that result in filling from thin to Walls with thickness greater than the thick sections. 20 . marked decrease in impact performance. The result can be a sections as they are prone to gas savings. The critical thickness reduces walls that are less than 1. cosmetic Air Trap problems. polycarbonate for example. than for cost savings.5 mm thick — variations up to about 25% without sig- with lowering temperature and molecular may require special high-performance nificant filling. Some entrapment problems (see figure 2-2). Above the critical thickness their flow-length-to-thickness ratios are parts made of polycarbonate can show a • Avoid wall thickness variations too high for conventional molding. Other points to consider Correct when addressing wall thickness include: Consistent Wall Thickness Non-uniform wall thickness can lead to air traps. Thin-wall molding is generally decrease in impact performance. Excessively thin walls may develop high molding stresses. failure during Thin-walled parts — those with main can tolerate nominal wall thickness impact. The critical thickness for molding equipment to achieve the problems. Usually. critical thickness may undergo brittle. Consider moldability when selecting Figure 2-2 Racetracking the wall thicknesses for your part. such as most amorphous or filled resins.can stiffen the part to the point that the • Avoid designs with thin areas pressures. room temperature is approximately 3/16 inch (see figure 2-1). Unfilled crystalline resins. rather than ductile. overly thick walls can Thin extend cycle times and create packing problems. Thick Conversely. low-shrinkage materials. Flow length — the distance from the gate to the last area fill — must be within acceptable limits for the plastic resin Incorrect chosen. medium-viscosity polycarbonate at required filling speeds and injection because of their high molding shrinkage. and filling problems that could restrict the processing window. warpage. This can drive up the geometry cannot flex and absorb the surrounded by thick perimeter molding costs and offset any material impact energy. or appearance weight. more suited for size or weight reduction materials.

Ribs sections that could cause sinks or voids. and sound deaden- ing determine the minimum required thickness. 21 . can only tolerate about half as much Many designs. consider the following: information about designing ribs and other protrusions. thickness-dependent properties such as flame retardency. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Coring Figure 2-3 • Make the outside radius one wall- thickness larger than the inside radius to maintain constant wall thickness through corners (see figure 2-4). have thick pertain to the part’s main walls. be sure the material provides the needed performance at the thicknesses chosen. If your part requires these properties. In some cases. UL flammability ratings. and • Round or taper thickness transitions to minimize read-through and possible blush or gloss differences (see figure 2-5). Core out thick sections as shown on right to maintain a more uniform wall thickness. For more parts. are listed with the minimum wall thickness for which the rating applies. and other protrusions from the wall When adapting these designs to plastic must be thinner to avoid sink. Blending also reduces the molded-in stresses and stress concentration associated with abrupt changes in thickness. for example. see the section on • Core or redesign thick areas to ribs in this chapter. These guidelines from cast metal to plastic. electrical resistance. especially those converted thickness variation. create a more uniform wall thickness (see figure 2-3).

alter the flow leader into the wall to minimize entire channel profile to effectively the filling pattern. areas of reduced RESTRICTORS restrictions. called flow leaders or age problems. problems (see figure 2-7) or move thicker channels. best results. use the These flow leaders help mold filling wall for low-shrinkage. limit the added thickness knitlines. and reduce sink in read-through and gloss differences on redirect flow. into the part design. When restricting thick flow internal runners. Carefully transition • Extend the restrictor across the filling in non-symmetrical parts. 22 . thickness intended to modify the filling pattern. For the other side of the wall. can alleviate air-entrapment Occasionally designers incorporate To avoid possible warpage and shrink.FLOW LEADERS AND should extend from the gate without Flow restrictors. to no more than 25% of the nominal channels as in figure 2-7. thick sections (see figure 2-6). flow leaders can balance crystalline resins. filled materials and to 15% for unfilled Additionally. Blend transitions to minimize read-through. amorphous or following rules of thumb in your design: or packing in areas far from the gate. the flow-leader thickness Figure 2-4 Corner Design Figure 2-5 Thickness Transitions Too Thin Incorrect Too Thick Correct Correct t R2 R1 Correct R2 = R1 + t Internal and external corner radii should originate from the same point.

mold construction. correct size and placement before decrease flow. • Reduce the thickness by no more than 33% in high-shrinkage resins or 50% for low-shrinkage materials. 23 . Gate Flow restrictors can change the filling pattern to correct problems such as gas traps. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Flow Leaders Figure 2-6 Flow Restrictors Figure 2-7 Flow Leader Corners typically fill late in box-shaped parts. Adding flow leaders balances flow to the part perimeter. and Flow leader and restrictor placement Today. computerized flow simulation were traditionally determined by trial enables designers to calculate the • Lengthen the restrictor to and error after the mold was sampled.

These • Acting as stops or guides for guidelines are based upon subjective mechanisms. Offset rib to reduce read-through and sink. gives common guidelines for rib thick- ness for a variety of materials. • Locating and captivating components Proper rib design involves five main The material. observations under common conditions Figure 2-8 Sink Figure 2-9 Offset Rib Sink opposite thick rib. and moldability. rib thickness. Consider and a variety of processing conditions • Providing alignment in mating these issues carefully when designing determine the severity of sink. surface of an assembly. color.RIBS This section deals with general guide. texture. Other uses for ribs include: Rib Design on the opposite surface of the wall to which they are attached (see figure 2-8). location. 24 . height. structural Ribs provide a means to economically considerations are covered in Chapter 3. Many factors go into determining the augment stiffness and strength in molded appropriate rib thickness. quantity. and ribs. issues: thickness. proximity to a gate. Rib Thickness lines for ribs and part design. Thick ribs parts without increasing overall wall often cause sink and cosmetic problems thickness. Table 2-1 parts.

125T Rib thickness also determines the 0. the percentages in these guidelines. In materials with nearly uniform shrinkage in the flow and T cross-flow directions. and hollows the channels Draft* with injected gas to avoid problems with sink. The gas-assist process takes advantage of these channels for filling. the ends *Minimum 0.5° Per Side of ribbed surfaces may warp toward the Rib design guidelines. Radius = 0. Highly glossy. 25 .5T cooling rate and degree of shrinkage in ribs. In this situation.5 mm — can thin ribs can be difficult to fill.0 in tall ribs. walls that are less than 1. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Table 2-1 Rib Thickness as a Percentage of Wall Thickness of flow hesitation. voids. PBT Polyester (Unfilled) 30% 40% To facilitate part ejection from the PBT Polyester (Filled) 33% 50% mold. Very where they intersect the base wall. ribs opposite character marks or steps mm or less. Flow entering Resin Minimal Sink Slight Sink the thin ribs hesitates and freezes while PC 50% (40% if high gloss) 66% the thicker wall sections fill. Because These channels can enhance flow in the rib direction and alter the filling pattern. the rib thickness should be can hide rib read-through (see figure equal to the wall thickness. thinner ribs tend to solidify earlier and shrink less than the base wall. More than one degree of and pertain to the thickness at the base often tolerate ribs that are thicker than draft per side can lead to excessive rib of the rib. ABS 40% 60% PC/ABS 50% 66% Ribs usually project from the main wall Polyamide (Unfilled) 30% 40% in the mold-opening direction and are Polyamide (Glass-Filled) 33% 50% formed in blind holes in the mold steel. ribs generally require at least one-half degree of draft per side (see figure 2-10). or excessive shrinkage. On thickness reduction and filling problems faces may require thinner ribs. thin ribs near the gate can sometimes be more difficult to fill than those further away. critical sur. Rib thickness Thick ribs form thickened flow channels 2-9). Thin-walled parts — those with also directly affects moldability. which in turn affects overall part warpage. Placing parts with wall thicknesses that are 1. The base of thick ribs is often a good location for gas channels in gas-assist Rib Design Guidelines Figure 2-10 molding applications.

Additionally. thickness approaches the wall thickness. rib thickness in glass-filled resins. Thin Rib Thick Rib For glass-filled materials with higher shrinkage in the cross-flow versus flow direction. design extra mold cooling on the ribbed side to compensate for the Figure 2-12 Warpage vs. Because thin ribs tend to fill from the base up. If you encounter one of these conditions. Warpage vs. the effect of rib thickness on warpage can be quite different (see figure 2-12). rather than along their length. As rib thickness increases and the flow Warpage vs. this effect this type of warpage generally decreases. the length of the ribs. Warpage can reverse as However. Because of the required draft for ejection. high cross-flow shrinkage over the length of the rib can cause the ends to warp toward the ribs. Maintain enough space between ribs for adequate mold cooling: for short ribs allow at least two times the opposing wall (see figure 2-11). standard rules of thumb limit rib height to approximately three times the rib-base thickness. and ejection problems. rib thickness in unfilled resins. As rib direction becomes more aligned along wall thickness. very tall ribs are prone to buckling under load. venting. with improved moldability (see figure 2-13). taller ribs provide greater Thin Rib Thick Rib support. To avoid mold filling. thinner ribs to provide the same support Warpage vs. ness as the wall may develop ends that warp toward the ribbed side. the ribs become thicker than the wall. To prevent this warpage. the tops of tall ribs may become too thin to fill easily. Rib Thickness Figure 2-11 Rib Size Generally. 26 . diminishes. ribs that are the same thick. Rib Thickness added heat load from the ribs. consider designing two or more shorter.

ribs added to 2. a grid of ribs Bosses find use in many part designs added to ensure part flatness may lead as points for attachment and assembly.5 mm) d t 0. For example.5t (1. the outside problems the ribs were intended to needed to fine tune performance. Likewise. or other types of fastening quantity of ribs to avoid worsening ly in the original design and added as hardware.4D D 0. breakage might actually reduce the BOSSES ability of the part to absorb impacts without failure. inserts.0 to 2. ribs should be applied sparing.060 in 0.0 to 2. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Multiple Ribs Figure 2-13 t Boss Design Figure 2-14 2. threaded Carefully consider the location and remove. cylindrical projections with holes Typically much easier to add than designed to receive screws. Rib Location and Numbers to mold-cooling difficulties and warpage. Typical boss design.4 times the outside diameter of increase part strength and prevent the screw or insert (see figure 2-14). 2t t Replace large problematic ribs with multiple shorter ribs. diameter of bosses should remain within correct.3t max. As a rule of thumb. The most common variety consists of 27 .

Instead. as the guidelines for rib thickness (see high retention forces (see the Bayer Shallower holes can leave thick sections. Consider using open- boss designs for bosses near a standing wall (see figure 2-17). to the base-wall level. or surface than a sharp edge. leading should have a blended radius. position the their outside diameter — can create a and appearance. the (see figure 2-16). use connecting ribs for support section at their base. wall (see figure 2-18).015. Connecting bosses to walls. table 2-1). The goal is to maintain a radii minimize stress concentration but (as shown in figure 2-15) to reduce the uniform thickness in the attachment increase the chance of sink or voids. consider adding a to filling problems. bosses away from the sidewall. Additionally. tall inch blend (fillet) radius provides a because they can form thick sections bosses — those greater than five times good compromise between strength that lead to sink. To reduce stress concentra. severity of sink. • For most applications. bosses boss-wall thickness must exceed the reduce the base wall thickness. Deeper holes tion and potential breakage.3t t A recess around the base of a thick boss reduces sink. even if the full ness to nominal-wall thickness the same Small screws attain surprisingly depth is not needed for assembly. knitlines. at their base. and if filling problem at their top or a thick needed. keep the ratio of boss-wall thick. the boss hole should extend boss. If the resulting in sink or voids. a 0. Avoid bosses that merge into sidewalls Because of the required draft. Larger recess around the base of the boss blemishes. 28 . Boss Sink Recess Figure 2-15 Bosses Figure 2-16 Incorrect Correct 30° 0. rather recommended ratio. To limit sink on the surface opposite the Specifying smaller screws or inserts Normally. Joining Techniques manual). often prevents overly thick bosses.

29 . Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Boss in Attachment Wall Figure 2-17 Boss Core Depth Figure 2-18 Core Too Short Core Too Long A A Radius Too Large Correct Section A-A Open bosses maintain uniform thickness in the attachment wall. cores in tall bosses can be difficult to cool and support. Consider coring a tall boss from two sides or extending tall gussets to the standoff height rather Boss holes should extend to the base-wall level. Long-Core Alternatives Figure 2-19 Incorrect Correct Correct Correct Core Too Long Options to reduce the length of excessively long core pins. than the whole boss (see figure 2-19).

2. substantially mold release. and walls (see figure 2-21). Specify proper Sharp inside corners concentrate stresses draft and draw polishing to help with from mechanical loading. GUSSETS Figure 2-22 shows the effect of root The location of gussets in the mold radius on stress concentration in a Gussets are rib-like features that add steel generally prevents practical direct simple. boss to a location where it can be shorter. vented (see figure 2-21). limit gusset thickness to one. leading to sinks or voids. large ratios cause thick walls to which they are attached if sink gussets and to areas that are more easily sections. Contour lines show flow front position at incremental time intervals. half to two-thirds the thickness of the or thickness to push gasses out of the Conversely. Because of their shape and SHARP CORNERS long boss into two shorter mating bosses the EDM process for burning gussets (see figure 2-20) or repositioning the into the mold.Other alternatives include splitting a is a concern. Squared gussets can trap air in the corners. venting. Adjust the shape ratio drops below approximately 0. Avoid designing gussets that stress concentration factor climbs ribs. packing problems. The support to structures such as bosses. gussets are prone to Avoid sharp corners in your design. As could trap gasses and cause filling and sharply as the radius-to-thickness with ribs. reducing mechanical performance. 30 . Figure 2-20 Mating Bosses Figure 2-21 Gussets Incorrect Correct Incorrect Correct Air Trap Position of flow front at regular time intervals Excessively long bosses can often be replaced by two shorter bosses. cantilevered snap arm. ejection problems.

sharp corners can cause high.4 0.5 impact loads.8 1. on the product drawings. Effects of a fillet radius on stress concentration. 1. localized shear rates. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued • A radius-to-thickness ratio of Fillet Radius and Stress Concentration Figure 2-22 approximately 0.5 shrinkage materials with low-notch sensitivity. In critical areas. corner radii should appear as a range. Inside 0. and possible cosmetic defects. In addition to reducing mechanical performance.0 to prevent sink and read-through. Round Edges Figure 2-23 A maximum value allows the mold maker to leave corners sharp as machined Easy Difficult with less than a 0. such as Durethan polyamide. high molding stresses.15 provides a good compromise between performance 3.0 P and appearance for most applications Stress Concentration Factor R subjected to light to moderate 2.6 0. Avoid universal radius specifications that round edges needlessly and increase mold cost (see figure 2-23).2 1. Avoid universal radius specifications that round edges needlessly and increase mold cost.2 0.0 Initially use a minimal corner radius h when designing parts made of high. 1.0 1. 31 . rather than a maximum allowable value.4 R/h corner radii can then be increased as needed based upon prototype testing. resulting in Easy Difficult material damage. 2.005-inch radius.

ribs. from frosted mold surfaces. which tends to eject easier of draft. use one degree of draft face coatings or treatments.5° Min. How a specific feature is formed in the mold determines the type of draft needed. urethane resin. ribs. Generally. and posts — should taper thinner as they extend into the mold. part geometry. Common draft guidelines. Incorrect Correct Features formed by blind holes or 0. pockets — such as most bosses. posts. • Use the standard one degree of draft plus one additional degree of draft for every 0. resin. Parts with many cores may need a higher amount of draft.DRAFT Figure 2-24 Draft Parts with No Draft Parts with Draft Draft — providing angles or tapers on product features such as walls. Design apply mold release or special mold sur. Other rules of thumb for designing draft include: Incorrect Correct Draw Polish • Draft all surfaces parallel to the direction of steel separation.5° Min. Figure 2-24 shows common draft guidelines. uniform wall thickness. polished mold surfaces require less draft permitting. damaging the part during ejection. Incorrect Correct 0. molders may have to the amount of draft needed. and Less draft increases the chance of The mold finish. and bosses that lie parallel to the direction of release from the mold — eases part ejection.5° Min. • Angle walls and other features that are formed in both mold halves to facilitate ejection and maintain 0. degree for most materials. and mold ejection system determine • Use a draft angle of at least one-half Additionally. for easy part ejection. SAN resins leading to longer cycle times and higher An exception is thermoplastic poly- typically require one to two degrees part costs. Surfaces formed by slides may not need draft if the steel separates from the surface before ejection. ultimately than surfaces with machined finishes.001 inch of texture depth as a rule of thumb. 32 .

make one core from the part in the mold-opening Consider alternative part designs that slightly larger (see figure 2-26). Otherwise. pockets. design parts so that the cores can separate in an area of slow-moving flow. recesses. suggested ratio (see figure 2-25). make one core larger to accommodate mismatch in for support. the advancing the guidelines for length-to-diameter valves at the top of the core to relieve plastic flow can exert very high side ratio double: typically 6:1 but up to the vacuum that forms during ejection forces on tall cores forming deep or 10:1 if the filling around the core is (See figure 7-13 in Chapter 7). closed-bottomed shapes may need air During mold filling. Design permitting. resist deflection better than cores that Cores are the protruding parts of the simply kiss off. Single cores for through- mold that form the inside surfaces of Generally. some deep If the core is supported on both ends. and for blind holes should not exceed 3:1. HOLES AND CORES this bending can fatigue the mold steel Properly interlocked cores typically and break the core. prevent distortion during ejection. Even direction. the mold. The level of support on bend the cores out of position. altering the core ends determines the maximum the molded part. addition to a generous draft. ejector pins. mold half for support. Under severe conditions. long holes. you may have to 33 . Cores also remove plastic Ratios up to 5:1 are feasible if filling from thick areas to maintain a uniform progresses symmetrically around the Mismatch can reduce the size of the wall thickness. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Figure 2-25 Interlocking Cores Figure 2-26 Core Mismatch Reduced Hole Correct Through-Hole The ends of the long cores should interlock into mating surfaces When feasible. Whenever possible. Parts with little ejector-pin that can increase the cost of mold such as the alternative boss designs in contact area often need extra draft to construction and maintenance (see figures 2-19 and 2-20. In section on undercuts). unsupported hole core or if the core is opening in holes formed by mating cores. These forces can push or symmetrical. Some part designs leave little room for add slides or hydraulic moving cores avoid the need for long delicate cores. the depth-to-diameter ratio holes can interlock into the opposite features such as holes.

Undercut features can often successfully strip from the mold during ejection if the undercut percentage is within the guidelines for the material type. polycarbonate blends. and maintenance costs. needing an additional mechanism in the way of the ejecting plastic part. Sometimes. avoid stripping undercuts in the mold to move certain components Called “undercuts. defined as follows and illustrated in figure 2-28 as: UNDERCUTS Slides and Cores D–d % Undercut = x 100 Some design features. Tight. amount of the undercut to a percentage 10% undercuts. round the edge on just one guidelines for stripping undercuts from tolerate 5% undercuts. Undercuts can only flexible and the leading edges are cores to correct for minor misalignment. On short and ribs. These features add to mold construction from stiffening features such as corners Typically. depending upon Undercuts up to 2% are possible in parts tolerance holes that cannot be stepped the undercut’s depth and shape and the made of these resins. 34 . types of mechanisms include slides. because of their D Most undercuts cannot strip from the orientation. Generally.” these elements can in parts made of stiff resins such as prior to ejection (see Chapter 7).with some mismatch. diameter can be maintained. they may tolerate up to and avoid mismatch (see figure 2-27). mold during ejection. Under ideal side of hole to eliminate a mating core round features limit the maximum conditions. can one core. In addition. if the walls are may require interlocking features on the resin’s flexibility. parts made of flexible resins. plastic polyurethane elastomer. the polycarbonate. Generally. be stripped if they are located away rounded or angled for easy ejection. the required hole part can flex enough to strip from the and reinforced grades of polyamide 6. The be difficult to redesign. Mismatch Figure 2-27 Stripping Undercut Guidelines Figure 2-28 Mismatch No Mismatch 30 – 45° Lead Angle d D Rounding both edges of the hole creates a potential for mismatch. the part must have such as unfilled polyamide 6 or thermo- through-holes that can be molded with room to flex and deform. place portions of the mold mold.

or springs activate most of these as the mold opens. and core pulls. Others use external devices such as hydraulic or pneumatic Draw cylinders to generate movement. lifters. quality problems. Cams. Simple wire guides can be molded with bypass steel in the mold. collapsible cores. They also add hidden costs in the form of increased production scrap. flash removal. All of these mechanisms add to mold cost and complexity. 35 . as well as maintenance. and increased mold downtime. Snap-fit hook molded through hole to form undercut. Get input from your mold designer early in product design to help identify options and reduce mold complexity. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Sidewall Windows Figure 2-29 Snap Fit Figure 2-30 Draw Snap Fit Bypass steel can form windows in sidewalls without moving slides. split cavi- ties. cam pins. Various design solutions for this problem are illustrated in figures 2-29 through 2-31. Clever part design or minor design concessions often can eliminate complex mechanisms for undercuts. Wire Guides Figure 2-31 split cores.

Angling the louver maintain. molds designed with facilitate straight draw of the vent coring by many electrical devices. Using moving slides or cores (see figure 2-33). Vent designs respond different- can have a major impact on the molding vents over the top of a corner edge can ly to the flame and safety tests required costs. cores are expensive to construct and (see figure 2-32). these molds surface can also allow vent slots to be are susceptible to damage and flash molded without side actions in the mold problems. Mold Part Mold Direction of Draw Louvers on sloping walls can be molded in the direction of draw. Fully test all numerous. For instance. 36 . Additionally. to form vents adds to mold cost and complexity.LOUVERS AND VENTS Carefully consider the molding process Consult all pertinent agency specifica- during part design to simplify the mold tions for cooling vents in electrical Minor variations in cooling-vent design and lower molding costs. Figure 2-32 Vent Slots Figure 2-33 Louvers on Sloping Wall Mold Core Mold Cavity Direction of Draw Extending vent slots over the corner edge eliminates the need for a side action in the mold. Extending devices. angled kiss-offs of bypass and eliminate a side action in the mold cooling-vent designs for compliance.

external threads centered on the mold parting line add little to the molding 37 . Acme and Buttress threads on the parting line require slides or side generally work better in plastic assemblies.5P 60° tomers.125P reduce the part’s mechanical performance Common thread and create molding problems in plastic Buttress profiles used in designs.5P molding and secondary operations. limit this option to Acme low-production quantities or designs 0.5P but adds substantially to the costs of 0. Usually. threads in parts made of flexible plastics. increase the mold’s cost and complexity. The molding process accommodates actions that could add to molding costs. such as unfilled R = 0. Figure 2-34 shows common thread profiles used in plastics.125P P polyamide 6 or polyurethane elas- 0. 50° 0. this cost to the cost of alternative attach. Rounding the thread’s crests plastic parts. steps. and roots lessens these effects. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Thread Profiles Figure 2-34 Occasionally. For this reason. The cost and complexity of the tooling usually determines the feasibility Thread designs requiring unscrewing of molding threads. this option usually requires generously rounded American National (Unified) threads and a diameter-to-wall-thickness 0. avoiding All threads molded in two halves are molded-in threads: the expense of secondary. can be stripped from the mold without special mechanisms.69P 50° Thread profiles for metal screws often have sharp edges and corners that can 0. Although less common than the American National (Unified) MOLDED-IN THREADS cost. Consider the following when specifying thread forming directly in a part. Typically. thread-cutting prone to parting line flash or mismatch.371P P ratio greater than 20 to 1. molding threads on removable cores 29° reduces mold cost and complexity 0. Most of the mechanisms for molding ment options. Rarely suited to filled resins or stiff plastics such as polycarbonate. such as self-tapping screws. internal threads — such as collapsible and unscrewing cores — significantly Easily molded in both mold halves. threads that do not lie thread. Always compare devices add the most cost to the mold.125P P that would be prohibitively complex to 5° mold otherwise.

• Use the maximum allowable radius • Avoid tapered threads unless you threads. feathered threads that can (see figure 2-36). cross threading. in particular. design the external threads on at the thread’s crest and root. and mating plastic and metal tapered Figure 2-35 Threads Figure 2-36 Pipe Threads Not Recommended Incorrect Correct Tapered threads create Bulge large hoop stress. common in any thread dopes or thread lockers are plumbing for fluid-tight connections. Polycarbonate resins. and an “O” ring to produce the seal making thin. F T t Incorrect Correct Metal or NPT L Bulge Plastic Pipe Plastic Fitting Recommended Design guidelines to avoid cross threading. assure that easily cross-thread (see figure 2-35). can provide a positive stop that the plastic component to avoid hoop limits hoop stresses to safe limits stress in plastic or use straight threads • Stop threads short of the end to avoid for the material. 38 . compatible with your selected plastic • Limit thread pitch to no more than are slightly conical and tapered and can resin. Plastic Pipe NPT Metal Fitting Plastic Pipe Straight Thread “O”-Ring Plastic Compression Fitting Seal Standard NPT tapered pipe threads can cause excessive hoop stresses in the plastic fitting. When many of these compounds. 32 threads per inch for ease of place excessive hoop stresses on the are susceptible to chemical attack from molding and protection from internal threads of a plastic part. Tapered pipe threads. Also.

For best performance. has developed special. Parts External that do not have to mate with standard Internal metal threads can have unique threads that meet the specific application and material requirements. Examples of thread designs that were modified for ease of molding. The medical industry. for example. use threads Figure 2-38 Molded Threads designed specifically for plastics. Thread designs can also be simplified for ease of molding as shown in figure 2-38. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Medical Connectors Figure 2-37 Luer-lock thread used in medical applications. plastic-thread designs for Luer-lock tubing connectors (see figure 2-37). 39 .

) Design suggestions for the cross-sectional profile of lettering. mold construction. To improve your ability to maintain specified tolerances in production: α α W W R R d α ≥ 30° W ≥ 2•d d = 0. such as streaks and tear drops. Deep. saving the expense of stick-on or painted labels. and instructions. The bottom shows the improvement with rounded. labels. Many variables contribute to the shallow lettering.010 in (Max. and • Angle or round the side walls of the letters as shown in figure 2-40. and part Figure 2-40 Lettering geometry. warnings. dimensional stability and achievable tolerances in molded parts. sharp lettering is prone to cosmetic problems. consider the following: • Limit the depth or height of lettering into or out of the part surface to approximately 0. and enhancing recyclability. diagrams. sharp lettering can cause teardrop defects as shown on top photo. TOLERANCES Deep. To address these cosmetic issues. material characteristics. 40 .010 inch.LETTERING Figure 2-39 Lettering The molding process adapts easily for molding-in logos. particularly when near the gate (see figure 2-39). including processing variability.

geometric tolerancing such as slides.006 M 0. allot a greater simultaneously.003 0. geometric tolerances. Rather tures separately.750 0. The standard tol- dimensions in the middle of tolerance erances hold the position and size of the range at optimum processing hole to ±0. expand the effective molding tolerance ed.000 ±0. the size and variability of by better defining the size and position • Avoid tight tolerances in dimensions other part features determine the actual requirements for the assembly. The geometric toler- conditions for the material.003. than dividing the allowable variability defines a tolerance envelope in which equally over the various features that size and position are considered • Design parts and assemblies to avoid govern fit and function. ±0. Generally. specify tight tolerances only when need. tight tolerances in areas prone to portion of the total tolerance range warpage or distortion.003 1.500 Dia.500 Dia. Rather affected by the alignment of the mold tolerance required for any one component than define the position and size of fea- halves or moving mold components or feature within an assembly.000 41 .003 0. and to features that are difficult to control. 0. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued • Use low-shrinkage materials in parts To avoid unnecessary molding costs. ±0. geometric tolerancing can Standard Geometric Tolerances Tolerances allow a feature position to vary with the size of the feature.750 ±0. Geometric tolerancing methods can with tight tolerances. ances specify a hole size tolerance of Tolerances Figure 2-41 Unlike standard tolerancing.003 1. Figure 2-41 shows the size and position Reserve tight tolerances for features of a hole specified in both standard and • Adjust the mold to produce that can accommodate them reasonably.

and more without restricting the required wear behavior. use glass fillers horizontal positions. Durethan polyamide resins hole size and the minimum hole size exhibit properties suitable for many gear • When both contacting plastics are can be added to the tolerance zone for and bearing applications. 0. hole size.003 but allow the position tolerance BEARINGS AND GEARS • When the mating components of a to vary within a 0. low and ensure that heat dissipates quickly from the bearing surface. keep frictional heating figure 2-42). the wear level is much (maximum material condition).503. • When designing bearing parts for that passes through the hole (see However. the position tolerance can increase without restricting the through-hole clearance.006 from the stated vertical and and shock-dampening properties. the position can vary Because plastic parts exhibit complex components. certain trends prevail: longevity. As the hole to increase the life of plastic becomes larger. 42 . the difference between the actual instance. For are very low. size. At the maximum as over-molded. the position tolerance thermoplastic urethane elastomers zone for the center of the hole is 0. Texin the moving surface.006 tolerance zone bearing or gear are made of the same when the hole is at its smallest diameter Material friction and wear properties material. usually wear is greater on the position tolerance. When play a key role in the performance of higher.012 demonstrate excellent abrasion resistance • When plastic components will or ±0.±0. predicting gear and through-hole for the post or screw bearing performance can be difficult. Used frequently unfilled. wear against steel. Tolerances Figure 2-42 Tolerance Zone Tolerance Zone for Largest Hole for Smallest Hole Required Through-Hole Size As the hole size increases. gear-tooth liners. unless the load and temperature the hole is larger than the minimum bearings and gears made of plastic.

and last longer when the shafts are hard and environmental conditions before finely polished.500 the bushing can change the clearance (see table 2-2). a major factor in the Table 2-2 at 100 Feet/Minute If chemically compatible. and • Check the compatibility of lubricants with your specific plastic. Calculate the bushing must not exceed the PV limit clearance throughout the service (minus appropriate safety factor) • Avoid soft-metal shafts when the temperature range. lubricants formation of frictional heat. Always Many factors influence the effective PV • Add holes or grooves to the inside test your specific shaft and bushing limit and actual bushing performance. bushings made of plastic prevent premature wear. loads or rotational speeds are high.500 Differences in the coefficient of linear increase in wear at PV values above a Polyamide 6 2. of the bushing to capture debris and combination under the full range of For instance. temperatures.000 thermal expansion between the shaft and limit characteristic of the specific resin Polyamide 6/6 2. can more than double the PV limit uct of the pressure (P) exerted on the and greatly increase the life of gears projected area of the bushing and the and bearings. is the prod.500 and affect part life. The PV factor for the Polyamide 6 30% GF 8. loads. Other points to consider: • Protect the bearings with seals or specifying a bushing material or design. Testing Polycarbonate 500 shows that plastics exhibit a sharp Thermoplastic PU 1. surface velocity (V) of the shaft. speeds.005 inch per inch of diameter. Chapter 2 GENERAL DESIGN continued Approximate PV Limits The PV factor. 43 . guards in dirty environments. maintaining a established for the selected resin. minimum clearance of approximately 0.

44 .

designing plastic parts. including visco. assembly. • Plastics exhibit much less strength unique or particularly relevant to be sure to consider not only the magni. but also the less obvious mechanical loads and stresses that can occur during operations such as manufacturing. Temperature and other environmental conditions can also dramatically affect • Processing and flow orientation can the mechanical performance greatly affect properties. Two main goals of this chapter tude of mechanical loads but also their are to show how to use published data type and duration. plastics can exhibit temperature dependent. plastics in part design. and to show how dramatically different behavior depending to take advantage of the design freedom on whether the loading is instantaneous. make pre. 45 . These other sources of mechanical loads can often place the highest structural demands on the plastic part. and IN PLASTICS ways: therefore focuses primarily upon those aspects of structural design that are When designing parts made of plastics. We and Polyurethanes. strongly suggest prototype testing for all applications. and stiffness. Plastic part design must also take into account not only the structural require- ments anticipated in the end-use application. plastics. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN This chapter assumes the reader has STRUCTURAL The mechanical properties of plastics a working knowledge of mechanical CONSIDERATIONS differ from metals in several important engineering and part design. and shipping. Carefully evaluate all of the structural loads the part must endure throughout its entire life cycle. consult the Bayer specific environment very difficult. and your structural requirements. More so than for • Mechanical properties are time and to address the unusual behavior of most materials. • Plastics typically exhibit nonlinear afforded by molding processes to meet long term. mechanical behavior. Many aspects of plastic behavior. or vibratory in nature. For more on dicting a given part’s performance in a these topics. Use Corporation companion to this manual: structural calculations conservatively Material Selection: Thermoplastics and apply adequate safety factors. of the plastic material. The following sections briefly discuss elasticity and sensitivity to a variety of the relevance of these differences when processing-related factors.

and molded parts. behaving more like over time. the or at elevated temperatures. Under mild figure 3-1). 46 .38 ABS 0.33 SAN 0.000 psi) Ratio Stiffness on page 67.39 PA* Unfilled 0.29 Copper (Annealed) 15.35 7 8 0. Spring A in the Maxwell the large disparity between plastic and loading conditions. This time. These design Modulus of Tensile Yield considerations are covered in greater Elasticity Strength Strength Poisson’s detail in the section Designing for Material (106 psi) (1. The Voight- was made of metal originally.Stiffness Viscoelasticity temperature-dependent behavior occurs because the polymer chains in the part Designing parts with adequate stiffness Plastics exhibit viscoelastic behaviors do not return to their original position can be difficult.6 32 5 0.38 Spring A * Conditioned Maxwell Dashpot A Voight Spring B Dashpot B Voight-Maxwell model simulating viscoelastic characteristics. If your elastic deformation. Under long-term. particularly if your part under load: they show both plastic and when the load is removed.34 — 6 0. good part designs incorporate stiffening features and use Table 3-1 Property Comparison of Metals and Plastics part geometry to help achieve required stiffness and strength.5 70 40 0. In practice. Increasing wall thickness may load is removed.34 PC/ABS 0.060 to 0. injection.72 15 — 0. More typically. exhibiting an elastic when the load is removed.160 inches. This dual behavior Maxwell model of springs and dashpots design needs the strength and/or stiffness accounts for the peculiar mechanical illustrates these characteristics (see of a metal part.40 PA* 30% Glass 0. heavy loads connected to the spring simulates the plastic resins. Steel 28. however. wall thickness ranges from 0.000 psi) (1. you must account for properties found in plastics.0 56 34 0. this same permanent deformation that occurs molding process limits wall thickness to plastic will deform.35 10 9 0.25 inch in solid.36 Aluminum 10.16 8 6 0.47 4 5 0. a high-viscosity liquid. plastics usually model represents the instantaneous metal mechanical properties (see table return to their original shape when the response to load and the linear recovery 3-1).35 Voight-Maxwell Model Figure 3-1 Polycarbonate 0. Dashpot A compensate for the lower stiffness of response. Generally. approximately 0.

continuous load or stress.000 80 -20°C 0°C 10. To account for this As a plastic part is exposed to higher behavior. or deformation.900 4.75 STRAIN (%) Viscoelasticity causes most plastics stress relaxation. it becomes more ductile: that reflect the correct temperature. yield strength decreases and the strain.30 4 6 8 10 1. the increase in more fully in the section Long-Term deformation over time in parts under Loading on page 73.000 40 120°C 4.000 20 2. load. and duration to which the part will at-break value increases. These topics are discussed also exhibit creep.000 60°C 90°C 6.000 23°C 60 40° 8.370 6.000 12. as well as 47 .000 STRESS 0 0 1. designers should use data temperatures. Temperature Figure 3-2 MPa 100 psi Makrolon 2658 PC 14. Plastic parts be exposed.35 2 2. the reduction in stress to lose stiffness and strength as the over time in a part under constant strain temperature increases (see figure 3-2). Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued Stress-Strain vs.

Stress-Strain Behavior Viscoelasticity Figure 3-3

A simple tensile test determines the Metals
stress-strain behavior of plastic materi-
Elastic (Hookean)
als. The results, usually expressed as a
curve, show the relationship between
stress, the force per original cross-
sectional area, and strain, the percentage
of change in length as a result of the Unreinforced
force. Nearly linear at very low stress Plastics

and strain levels, the stress-strain
behavior of plastics tends to become
increasingly nonlinear as these loads
increase. In this context, the term “non-
Viscoelastic
linear” means that the resulting strain
at any particular point does not vary
proportionally with the applied stress.
STRESS

(Voight-Maxwell)

STRAIN

Metals usually function within the elastic (Hookean) range of mechanical behavior.
Unreinforced plastics tend to exhibit nonlinear behavior represented here by the
combination of springs and dashpots.

48

Chapter 3
STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued

Secant Modulus Figure 3-4 Figure 3-3 shows typical stress-strain
curves for steel and unreinforced
Ε Young’s thermoplastic materials. While metals
can exhibit plastic behavior, they typically
σsecant
Ε secant = function within the elastic (Hookean)
ε secant
range of mechanical performance.
Because of viscoelasticity, unreinforced
Ε secant plastic materials tend to exhibit non-
linear behavior through much of their
operating range. Even at low strain
σsecant
Actual
values, plastics tend to exhibit some
Curve nonlinear behavior. As a result, using
the tensile modulus or Young’s modulus,
derived from stress over strain in the
linear region of the stress-strain curve,
in structural calculations could lead to
an error. You may need to calculate the
secant modulus, which represents the
stiffness of a material at a specific strain
or stress level (see figure 3-4). The use
of secant modulus is discussed in the
example problems later in this chapter.
STRESS (σ)

ε secant

STRAIN (ε)

The Young’s modulus derived from the stress-strain behavior at very low strain can overstate
the material stiffness. A calculated secant modulus can better represent material stiffness at
a specific stress or strain.

49

Stress-Strain Stress-Strain
Parallel to Orientation Figure 3-5 Perpendicular to Orientation Figure 3-6
120 80
Durethan BKV 130 Durethan BKV 130

70
100

23°C 60 23°C

80
50

40°C 40°C
60 40

60°C 60°C
30
40
90°C 90°C
30 120°C 20 120°C
150°C
STRESS (N/mm2)

150°C
STRESS (N/mm2)

20
10

0 0
0 1 1.3 2 3 4 0 1 2 3 4

STRAIN (%) STRAIN (%)

This graph shows the stress-strain performance parallel to fiber This graph shows the stress-strain performance perpendicular
orientation at various temperatures for a 30% glass-filled PA 6 to fiber orientation at various temperatures for a 30% glass-filled
material after conditioning. PA 6 material after conditioning.

Molding Factors a given part can endure. Always add and 3-6 show stress versus strain for a
reasonable safety factors and test 30% glass-filled PA 6 in the parallel-to-
The injection-molding process introduces prototype parts before actual production. fiber and perpendicular-to-fiber directions.
stresses and orientations that affect
the mechanical performance of plastic In glass-filled resins, fiber orientation Unless otherwise stated, most mechanical
parts. The standard test bars used to also affects mechanical performance: properties derive from end-gated test
determine most mechanical properties fatigue strength for a given fiber-filled bars that exhibit a high degree of orien-
have low levels of molding stress. The resin is often many times greater when tation in the direction of the applied test
high molding stresses in an actual part the fibers are aligned lengthwise, rather load. Mechanical calculations based
may reduce certain mechanical properties, than perpendicular to the fatigue load. on this kind of data may over-predict
such as the amount of applied stress Stress-strain performance in the direction material stiffness and performance in
of fiber orientation can also differ greatly
from the performance in the direction
perpendicular to the fibers. Figures 3-5

50

Figure 3-7 100 Cast Polyester Non-Reinforced (Rigid. 51 . mechanical properties for the orientation Material Selection for information on Figure 3-7 shows the kinds of stress-strain and cross-orientation directions. Specific prop. Consult the Bayer publication versus percentage elongation (strain). and the device calculations and apply appropriate safety thermoplastic materials. you may want erty data for Bayer materials can be area (stress) required to stretch the to perform a structural finite-element found in the CAMPUS© database system sample from 0% elongation to break. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued parts with random fiber orientation or SHORT-TERM Tensile Properties in applications in which the fibers lie MECHANICAL PROPERTIES perpendicular to the applied loads. and in Bayer’s Property The results are often graphed as stress from mold-filling analysis and unique Guide. The jaws this potential source of error in your term strength mechanical behavior of separate at a steady rate. Rigid data used for thermoplastics engineering plastics exhibit a nearly linear behavior resins. These publications are available similar to metals. the various test methods and property behavior exhibited by plastics. records the force per cross-sectional factors.000 ELONGATION (ε) (%) These curves illustrate the characteristic differences in the stress-strain behavior of various plastics. display a more complex behavior. between two clamping jaws. Brittle) 80 PC (Ductile) TENSILE STRESS (σ) (MPa) 60 PU Elastomer (Rubber-Like) (95 Shore A) 40 ABS (Ductile) 20 0 // 0 10 20 120 200 400 600 800 1. Ductile materials through your Bayer sales representative. For critical parts. Address criteria to define and describe the short. analysis using fiber-orientation data for plastics. Fiber Tensile properties are measured in a orientation in an actual part is seldom This section gives some commonly used device that stretches a molded test bar as uniform as it is in test bars.

the proportional Ultimate Strength limit.Figure 3-8 identifies the transitional Figure 3-8 points in the stress-strain behavior of ductile plastics. STRAIN Elongation at yield gives the upper Typical stress-strain behavior of unreinforced plastics. Data for analysis. shows the end of the region in which the resin exhibits linear stress. Point D. but not the larger deformation that occurs during yield. Point B is the elastic C Yield Point limit. marks the beginning of the region in which ductile plastics continue to deform with- out a corresponding increase in stress. it may be more tensile stress at break establish the appropriate to derive a modulus from upper limits for two types of applications: the slope of a line drawn tangent to the curve at a point on the stress-strain diagram (tangent modulus). for example.1%. you can calculate the modulus stress applied to the tensile bar at the at some specified strain value. shows the strain value when the test bar breaks. 52 . or the point after which the part B D will be permanently deformed even Elastic Limit Break Point after the load is removed. Mathematically. the yield point. Because of plastic’s viscoelastic establishes the upper limit for applications behavior. Higher values indicate greater on the stress-strain curve. buckling deflection-rate tensile test. generally stiffness. Tensile stress at yield. For some applications. limit for applications that can tolerate the small permanent deformation that occurs between the elastic limit and the yield point. E strain behavior. you that yield under test conditions. the Tensile Modulus Tensile Stress at Yield break point. can determine the tensile modulus by taking the ratio of stress to strain as measured below the proportional limit Tensile Stress at Break on the stress-strain curves. Commonly used in structural calculations. typically time of fracture during the steady- at 0. Tensile-stress-at-yield plastics than it is for metals and most values can be measured only for materials other materials. the stress level tensile modulus measures material corresponding to the point of zero slope stiffness. Applications that cannot tolerate any permanent Proportional Limit A deformation must stay below the elastic STRESS limit. Point C. When dealing with materials with no clear linear Tensile stress at break is defined as the region. determining tensile modulus that can tolerate only small permanent is more subjective and less precise for deformations. Point A.

55 – 0.20 – 0. in general strength comparisons.40 PS 0.50 0.35 materials approach the constant-volume POM 0.65 0. bending loads distributes tensile and dynamic friction. This value should be used or maintain sliding.50 – 0.50 0.30 – 0. the forces acting on the ductile materials.30 – 0.75 0.25 – 0. to normal force. and at yield or break. rather Defined as the ratio of stress to strain in the force perpendicular to the contact than as a design criterion.75 0. flexural listed for two types of friction: static breaking point in brittle materials.60 – 0.35 value of 0.50 0. plastics tend to be 53 .35 – 0.60 more common to test tensile properties PVC 0.40 – 0.40 PBT 0. and applications compressive loading. it Coefficients of Friction (Static) Ranges narrows laterally.50 Compressive Properties SAN 0.55 – 0. it is often the value during bending.60 plastics tend to fail in tension rather ABS 0.60 – 0. Coefficient of Friction Ultimate strength measures the highest The coefficient of friction is the ratio of stress value encountered during the Flexural Modulus friction force.35 and 0.60 0.55 PC 0.55 – 0. foamed plastics that form solid skins.60 0. Test values common plastics. For this reason it is PE Flexible 0.45 – 0. Poisson’s ratio mea.45 0.10 – 0. the forces acting compressive stresses through its thickness. The flexural modulus is based upon the Table 3-2 lists typical values for Poisson’s Ratio calculated outer-fiber stress.15 – 0. For modulus measures a resin’s stiffness friction.10 – 0.25 resins (see table 3-1).65 – 0. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued one-time-use applications that normally approximately 30% stronger under for tensile modulus typically correlate fail because of fractures. A test bar subjected to surfaces to resist initial movement.45 – 0. Some elastomeric PP 0.65 0.40 – 0.40 – 0. As a plastic specimen stretches longitu- dinally in response to tensile loading.60 rather than compressive properties. As a rule of thumb.25 – 0. PA 0.40 – 0. Consult your Bayer well with those of the flexural modulus in which the parts can still function after representative if your application requires in solid plastics. Ultimate the elastic region of a stress-strain curve surfaces. detailed analysis in a compressive mode.30 – 0.50.55 Under equivalent loading conditions. Assuming that the compressive strength equals the tensile strength usually results Ultimate Strength in a conservative design.70 0. PMMA 0.25 0.40 0.50 – 0.30 – 0. but differ greatly for undergoing permanent deformation.35 – 0. Coefficients are commonly strength is usually the stress level at the derived from flexural testing.40 for engineering PE Rigid 0. Table 3-2 for Various Materials sures the ratio of lateral to longitudinal strains as the material undergoes tensile Material On Self On Steel loading. Poisson’s ratio usually falls PTFE 0.65 than compression. between surfaces that are already sliding.25 between 0. the force needed to initiate tensile test.

creep and recovery deformation.LONG-TERM Creep and Recovery Figure 3-9 MECHANICAL PROPERTIES Creep Recovery 5 si 6. as well as the molecular.0 00 p Time and temperature affect the long- 3 psi term mechanical properties of plastics 5. Even at moderate temperatures. parts subjected to a constant length over time. 5 Two consequences of long-term 3 loading are creep. Plastics under constant load si tend to deform over time to redistribute 3. to constant strain. if given enough time.000 because they affect polymer-chain 2 psi 4. Long-term data is often plotted as strain versus time creep data helps designers estimate and at various stress levels throughout the adjust for this additional deformation.000 mobility. they creep. The mobility 7 2. the added deforma.000 p of polymer chains determines the rate of 5 this stress redistribution. Creep Properties weight axially on the end of a test bar and monitoring increases in the bar Over time. 2 vibration energies. common creep test involves hanging a 54 . Presented graphically load often distort beyond their initial in a variety of forms. A creep and recovery phases (see figure 3-9). TIME (hours) the reduction in stress in parts subjected Creep and recovery of Makrolon polycarbonate at 73°F (23°C). 7 polymer chains can reorient in response to applied loads. 10-1 100 101 102 103 10-1 100 101 102 103 104 tion that occurs over time in parts under constant stress. and stress relaxation. resulting in a corresponding increase in polymer-chain STRAIN (ε) (%) 10-1 mobility. Higher temper- Load atures increase the free space between 3 Removed molecules.000 p 100 si and lower internal stresses.

000 psi. and a load 55 . divide the calculated modulus or creep modulus into deflection stress by the resulting strain as read formulas. a tensile stress of 2.5 2. Another popular form for creep data. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued Isochronous Stress-Strain Figure 3-10 psi 23°C (73°F) MPa 50% RH 50 7.2%. 3-10 that the corresponding strain is plots tensile stress versus strain at given 1. time increments (see figure 3-10). For example.0 2.000 0 0.000 10 1.800 20 TENSILE STRESS ( σ ) 2.000 10 -1 10 0 40 10 1 hours 5.800 psi. occur over time.200 10 2 5.2 STRAIN ( ε ) (%) Isochronous stress-strain curves at 73°F (23°C) for Makrolon polycarbonate. will enable the formula to the time duration desired. duration of 1.750 Crazing 3. in place of the instantaneous from the isochronous curve corresponding tensile modulus.000 3.000 hours.5 1.000 6. we see in figure the isochronous stress-strain curve. Substituting this apparent creep modulus.5 1.000 10 3 10 4 6x10 4 30 4.0 1. To we calculate an apparent modulus of determine the apparent modulus or 220. Dividing the stress by the strain.000 2. to better predict the deformation that will assuming room-temperature conditions.

psi 176°F (80°C) accounts for stress relaxation in standard 30 10 -2 4. In figure 3-10. Isochronous Stress-Strain Figure 3-11 10. results are often presented in the form strain curves by noting the change in of S-N curves (see figure 3-12) that plot stress corresponding to a given strain on the stress amplitude against the number the different time curves.750 psi after 56 .5% strain after Crazing 10. of cycles to failure. In general. Molded plastic parts exposed to cyclic loading often fail at substantially lower stress and strain levels than parts under As mentioned earlier. higher ambient temperatures will cause stress relaxation.000 hours.000 hours at room temperature.000 101 102 20 crazing could occur in transparent poly- 103 carbonate parts. one-piece salad tongs. 10-1 100 Hours These curves also may show when 3.000 when a part is subjected to long-term 10 loads — precedes larger cracks and part 1.5 2. is an important design housings.000 failure. Applications that expose of plastics. and the curves in figure 3-11 for the same concern for parts that will be subjected high-use snap-latch closures — need material at 176°F (80°C).200 on stress-strain curves as in figure 3-13.0 2. Crazing — the formation 104 of tiny. The information from isochronous stress. Fatigue information the tensile stress at 2% strain drops can also appear as stress or strain limits from an instantaneous value of 5. Be sure to use and other part features subject to Fatigue curves. more creep deformation. Compare the isochronous Stress relaxation. In figure 3-10. 0 0. provide a useful means for comparing the relative fatigue You can derive stress-relaxation endurance of different plastics. temperature affects Stress Relaxation static loading. in stress or strain. calculated by dividing the stress (after MPa a specific time) by the fixed strain value. Because of plastics with good fatigue characteristics. spring fingers. the stress reduction parts to heavy vibrations or repeated stress-strain curve for polycarbonate at that occurs in parts subjected to constant deflections — such as snowplow headlight room temperature in figure 3-10 with strain over time. to long-term deflection. psi to approximately 3. generated from tests creep data derived at temperatures constant strain can show a reduced that subject test specimens to cyclic appropriate for your application.5 Fatigue Properties STRAIN (ε) (%) Isochronous stress-strain curves at 176°F (80°C) for Makrolon polycarbonate. you can see that crazing occurs at 2.5 1. retention or deflection force over time loading until failure or a fixed reduction (see example problem 3-7). Stress-relaxation modulus. press fits. a phenomenon known the long-term and short-term properties as fatigue. reflective cracks that can appear TENSILE STRESS (σ) 2.0 1.000 engineering equations.

NB Dynamic Load Limits Figure 3-13 50 Loading: Dynamic 45 -20 40 0 23 35 40 °C 30 60 Design Limit 90 25 TENSILE STRESS (N/mm2) 20 15 10 Stress-strain curves for 5 Bayblend T85MN Safety Factor: 1.5 1.00 PC/ABS showing 0 limits at various 0 0.75 2 2. STRAIN (ε) (%) 57 .5 0.75 1 1.25 temperatures for dynamic loading.25 0.25 1. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued S-N Curves Figure 3-12 48 7 Hz Bending 44 7 Hz (S) STRESS AMPLITUDE ±σα (N/mm2) Tensile 40 7 Hz 36 Fatigue test curve for glass- filled Durethan 32 polyamide in 10 3 10 4 10 5 10 6 three cyclic- loading modes. (N) NUMBER OF CYCLES TO BREAK.

elastic modulus for the material. Then. which is independent of the plastics have a high degree of inherent standard formulas. and noncritical parts. In contrast to metals. now common in plastic part design. Fatigue strength for a slightly with temperature and loading for a demonstration of this procedure. Table loading rather than perpendicularly.The white line shows the suggested STRUCTURAL solid plastics undergoing short-term design limit at various temperatures DESIGN FORMULAS loading below the proportional limit can for a Bayblend PC/ABS resin used in use either the flexural modulus or the applications subjected to dynamic fatigue Finite-element-analysis (FEA) techniques. The secant modulus typically provides means. an area or feature secant modulus. stress calculation formulas calculated stress by the strain to obtain can lead to thermal failure if the energy derived for metals apply directly to the secant modulus for that stress level. of materials. divide the heat generation in plastic parts. use fatigue data that is appropriate for your application. published instantaneous tensile modulus. and material remains within its elastic limit. but usually only to an times greater when the fibers are insignificant degree. vibration Because they are primarily a function of calculated stress on the appropriate frequencies as low as 10 Hz can cause part geometry and load and not material stress-strain curve. and always include a suitable safety factor. environ. loading for 107 cycles. ν. calculated loading frequency. This properties. you will have mental factors. and temperature. cannot be properly dissipated by other plastics. given fiber-filled resin can be many conditions. See example problem 3-3 performance. surface finish. Simple bending calculations involving 58 . first solve the stress fatigue performance. Poisson’s ratio varies strain levels. such as convection. deflection formulas require elastic satisfactory predictions of deflections (Young’s) modulus and sometimes in applications that experience higher Fiber orientation can also affect fatigue Poisson’s ratio. critical designs. Single-point data aligned lengthwise in the direction of suffices for most calculations. stress concentrators. under load can often be represented by equation. use the instantaneous elastic modulus. actual calculated stress. To calculate whether the part is plated also affect Even in a complex part. Therefore. use isothermal stress-strain curves to calculate elastic modulus — simply stress divided by strain in the linear region — at the desired temperature. formulas can give good results if the from the curves and based upon the Surface texture. standard design to use a secant modulus. provide valuable information about the For short-term loads in the nonlinear Fatigue properties are sensitive to many mechanical performance of complex or region above the proportional limit. 3-1 lists typical values for a variety When calculating fatigue-life values. Next damping and relatively low thermal read the strain corresponding to this conductivity. Generally material dependent. Use of Moduli For short-term loads at room tempera- tures and stress levels below a resin’s proportional limit. At other temperatures. factors including notch effects. For simple geometries such as assembly stresses.

plastic parts can be designed Durethan (30%) PA cond. yield stress) usually have large inherent dependent. Triax (15%) PA/ABS 2. The Lustran ABS 1. Newtons Makrolon (10%) PC 2. predict use conditions.5% applications.0% based on either stress or strain limits. 6. concentration factor (see figure 3-32) the calculated stress divided by the appropriate safety factors should always before making the comparison. use about 60% of these values. for frequent separation and rejoining. Table 3-3 Limits at 23°C (73°F) applications that stay below these limits typically do not fracture or exhibit significant permanent deformation. Use a safety factor of at least limit is exceeded. A time. If a strain- Durethan PA cond. various families of Bayer engineering Permissible mation and example problems dealing plastics.8% created by substituting σ / ε for E in the actual units of strain are length divided Makroblend Polycarb. Blends 3.0% interrelated. but become less conserv. either crazing or design limits for the the result by an appropriate stress- dependent property. 59 . 2. Because stress and strain are Makrolon (20%) PC 2. per millimeter) but it is most often Triax PA/ABS 3. dry 1. Stress and Strain Limits Designs that see multiple applications of an applied load should stay below Unreinforced Plastics differ in the level of stress or 60% of these values.0% specimen divided by its original length dry 4. To apply a stress limit. If the corresponding strain value read from be used. General stress limits stress below the limit.2% per square millimeter = Megapascals. See the Long-Term Properties strain limits at room temperature for section in this chapter for more infor. Calculations safety factors. it can be and is represented by the symbol ε. representative modulus value. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued For long-term loads. then substituting by length (inches per inch. it is almost always used in lus is also time dependent. the creep modu. millimeters Makrolon PC 4. Be sure to multiply nous stress-strain curves.0% the complete stress equation for σ.5% General guide data for the allowable short- term strain for snap joints (single joining operation).4% represented as a percentage. Permissible strain Apec High Heat PC 4. One-time. ative at elevated temperatures or long-time to evaluate true design performance.0% based formula is not available. creep modulus is given time and temperature. Note that because strain value is always changing in a part (such as 25% of the published tensile the stress equation itself is not modulus- that is exhibiting creep.0% strain they can tolerate in structural values are typically used to design parts Bayblend PC/ABS 2. isochronous stress-strain curves showing the limit is exceeded. the deflection that occurs after a period simply solve the stress equation for the Table 3-3 lists the permissible short-term of time. Engineering strain is with short-term or intermittent loads Centrex ASA 1. a decreased. Because the critical applications. reduce the load or the isochronous stress-strain curve for 2. Stress has units of force per cross-sectional area Glass-Fiber-Reinforced (% Glass) (pounds per square inch = psi. use a creep or Stress limits are best determined from given load and geometry to determine if apparent modulus derived from isochro. short-duration load Short-Term Strain with creep behavior.2% MPa).0 — higher values are necessary in increase the cross-sectional area to reduce the desired time span. conjunction with the deflection equation using the creep modulus. Of course.9% defined as the change in length of a such as cantilever snap arms.5% deflection equation.

we can see that applying a safety factor of 2.011 in/in = 1. however. the compressive by cross-sectional area. Based on the set or engineering handbook for analytical To find the elongation of the bar. of isochronous curves shown in figure buckling formulas.125)] case. but because it is The definition of stress is load divided 0. Calculate the ∆L / L. the sample must be strained beyond the proportion- al limit. Using Young’s of 4.125 inch is exposed to The definition of engineering strain is easy to test. Extrapolating from this modulus to calculate strain gives: data. However. deter. mine the strain (change in length per 3-10. In this tensile strength. (In some cases 4. For the Young’s strength of plastic usually exceeds modulus case. ∆L = (5 inch)(0.Uniaxial Tensile and Compressive Stress Example 3-1: Tensile Stress and Strain Esecant = 4. Since this strain value is greater than that calculat- ed with Young’s modulus. = 4.000 psi. the error introduced by using assumption.1% strain crazing during the life of most parts in unharsh environments. Poisson’s ratio is required.5 inch by 0.000-psi stress is not removed after a most susceptible to this failure mode. so the stress is: the actual stress-strain curve is ∆L = strength is usually assumed to equal the (5 inch)(0. the majority of the available a 250-pound tensile load. simply load are assuming short-term loading. reading from the stress-strain curve at room temperature (23°C) in figure 3-2 gives a value of 1. If the to buckle.) short time.0135 = 296. sample by the strain. excessive Note that no modulus values are required Keep in mind that these calculations compressive stress may cause the part to determine the stress.000 psi / 0.000-psi stress. multiply the original length of the tensile test methods.0135) = 0.000 psi / 350. Depending on geometry.000 psi reduces the risk of = 0. slender shapes are the and cross-sectional area. which is a conservative σt = P / A = 250 / [(0.296 psi Because most plastic part failures are A 5-inch-long bar with a cross section tensile failures and this failure mode is of 0. But the correct answer using more difficult to test.5)(0. so to find the change in length.000 psi below 2.055 inch. crazing will occur after 6 x 104 unit length) created by the applied hours (about 6. stress-strain data were produced using stress and elongation of the Makrolon ∆L.0 and keeping the stress ε = σ / E = 4. Long.011) = the tensile strength. The proper secant modulus for this case is then: 60 .000 psi.35% strain for a stress of 4.000 psi Young’s modulus was about 19%.068 inch. the material will creep causing Consult a strength-of-materials textbook strain to increase.8 years) at a stress level 4. The compressive polycarbonate bar.

M represents the bending (inches4. Z (not to be confused shown in figure 3-14. E) as I tensile stresses on the convex side of the times the distance to the point of interest. millimeters4). divided by c allows the bending-stress part and compressive stresses on the For the simple cantilever shown in figure formula to be rewritten: concave side. The common units to compressive. The neutral plane defines 3-14. Bending tion modulus. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued Tensile and Compressive Stresses in Bending Figure 3-14 P L σt(+) Tensile Stress c h Neutral Plane Compressive σc(–) Stress Bending and Flexural Stress Mc capital letter I. or P times L. Defining sec- stresses through the cross section. the moment at the attachment the plane of zero stress in which the point is the load times the length of the σb = M / Z stress magnitude switches from tensile beam. The distance from the neutral defined by the formula: plane to the point of interest is repre- sented by c. The stress distribution of moment are pound-inches or Newton- through the thickness of the part is meters. and the moment of inertia of the cross section (not to be confused with bending moment) is represented by 61 . The moment of inertia σb = I indicates resistance to bending and has Bending or flexing a plastic part units of length to the fourth power induces both tensile and compressive In this formula. as moment applied to the beam. Bending creates moment can be defined as applied force with the material modulus.

Table 3-4 Section Properties for Bending Cross-Sectional Area Moment of Inertia Section Modulus Shape A c I z = I/c h h bh3 bh2 bh c 2 12 6 b t s h d c b h bh3-d3(b-s) bh3-d3(b-s) bh-d(b-s) 2 12 6h t s h d c b t d s b 2tb3+ds3 2tb3+ds3 b bh-d(b-s) c 2 12 6b h t d 2tb2+ds2 hb3-d(b-s)3 b bh-d(b-s) -A(b-c)2 c 2A 3 s Bottom in Top in h Tension: Tension: I I OR s d c b-c h h2s+t2(b-s) bh3-d3(b-s) c ds+bt -A(h-c)2 t 2A 3 b di do π(do2-di2) do π(do4-di4) π(do4-di4) c 4 2 64 32do * For solid round let di = 0 62 .

y PL PL3 Z 3EI Table 3-4 shows formulas for the cross- L sectional area. distance from the neutral plane to the outer surface in tension. y PL wL4 12 Z 384EI L 63 . use the secant modulus or apparent w modulus for E. The formulas assume the bending moment is L/2 P applied about this axis. as well as the position of the load and whether it is concentrated or distributed across w y the surface of the part. Z. A. 8Z 192EI L Newtons/millimeter). and w section modulus. for various cross y wL2 wL4 sections. a P b For a > b: Bending-stress formulas are highly y Pb(L2-b2)3/2 Pab dependent on boundary conditions. The symbol P denotes con- centrated loads (pounds. neutral axis. The cross sections y PL PL3 that are not symmetrical about the neu- 4Z 48EI tral axis require some back-substitution L of A and c to calculate I and Z. Newtons) and L/2 P the symbol w denotes loads evenly dis- y PL wL4 tributed across the beam (pounds/inch. The dashed line in the cross- 2Z 8EI L sectional diagrams denotes the neutral plane. 9 3EIL xm LZ Boundary conditions define how the L2-b2 L At xm = 3 ends of the part are restrained. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued Table 3-5 Beam Bending Formulas For design purposes. Use the values from table 3-4 for I and Z. or in this case. the maximum tensile bending stress is of primary interest. Table 3-5 gives PL 5wL4 stress and deflection formulas for the 8Z 384EI L bending of beams with different boundary conditions. c. For accurate results. moment of inertia. I. The maximum tensile bending Loading and Bending Stress Deflection Boundary Conditions σb y stress is found when c is set equal to the distance from the neutral plane to the P outer surface in tension.

The beam was injection molded from Durethan BKV A A 130 PA 6 resin through a gate on one end.3%. b = 4. Because the resin is 30% glass (250)(4)(102-42)3/2 table 3-5.5 in First.0689)(10) Solving for maximum tensile bending The gate at one end of the beam will = 0. xm = [(L2-b2) / 3]1/2 = [(102-42) / 3]1/2 Now solve the deflection equation using = 5. therefore.0689 inch4 Z = I / c = 0.2 and d = 0. Reading from the 60°C For this special case.923 psi. It instead = 4. fiber orientation is considered. The secant where the load is applied. L = 10.013 = 334.1378)] gives a strain of 1. and align most of the fibers along the length P = 50 gives: of the beam. = (15.6EIL for the given boundary conditions in modulus. the curves in figure 3-5 apply. t = 0.354 psi (30 MPa) modulus for this case is 4.29 inches from the left the secant modulus.20 in s = t = 0. Find the maximum deflection of the beam and at what point the maxi- mum deflection occurs.923)(0. From table 3-4 with b = h = 1.2)] / 12 = 0.5 inch δ=? Section A-A I= [(1)(1)3 .5 = 0.0689 / 0.354 psi (30 MPa) deflection does not occur at the point = (250)(6)(4) / [(10)(0.1378 inch3 The stress result is needed in this case Pb(L2-b2)3/2 y= Now find the appropriate stress formula only to calculate the proper secant 15.6: c = h / 2 = 1 / 2 = 0. reinforced.Example 3-2: Beam Bending Figure 3-15 Simply Supported Plate A load of 250 pounds is placed on a 10-inch-long beam 4 inches from one end.354 psi / occurs at: 0.2 inch.214 inch stress with a = 6. end of the beam 64 .6)3(1-0. The fourth condition is correct. The environmental tempera- ture is 140°F (60°C). calculate the section properties of p = 275 psi the I-beam. (0. The I-shaped beam is 1-inch wide and 1-inch tall with a uniform thickness of 0. 1. the maximum σb = Pab / LZ curve at a stress of 4.6)(334.

000)(0.902 psi σ= 8t2 65 . t = plate thickness (0.0243 inches A = πD Using the room-temperature flexural Section B-B modulus (330.38) / 8(0.75)2(3+0.38)-(0. In addition.20)2 bending stress.75)4[5-4(0. a 1.000 psi) instead of the secant modulus at 40°C would have Mold dump well predicted a deflection of 0.38)2] 16(280.900 psi. the disk to exceed the proportional limit. the elevated-temperature example of shear stress is the shearing condition rules out the use of the room. A. Example 3-3: Plate Deflection where: p = applied pressure load (275 psi) Shear Stress Assume that the simply supported plate r = plate radius (0. parallel to the load. The maximum deflection (δ) and stress temperature Young’s modulus.5 inches and a thickness of 0. an error of 15%. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued Shear Stress on a Pin Figure 3-16 Using the 40°C isothermal stress-strain curve in figure 3-2. divided by the cross-sectional Solving the stress equation yields: area of the pin. of a bolt or pin as shown in figure 3-16. Shear stress is denoted by the Greek letter τ. Using the stress-strain curves This pressure load will cause strain in the cross section that lies in-plane or for Makrolon polycarbonate resin. Dividing stress by strain B B gives a secant modulus of 280. The load in the plates creates a shear (σ) for this case can be calculated from first calculate the appropriate secant stress on the cross section B-B equal to the formulas: modulus to use in the deflection formula. P.75 inches) shown in figure 3-15 has a diameter of ν = Poisson’s ratio (0.2 inches. the load.000 psi. Shear stress is an ambient temperature of 104°F calculated by considering the stress on (40°C). the 1.75% strain is found to correspond to a stress of about 4. Therefore. 3pr2(3+ν) = 4.38) In tensile or compressive loading.2 inches) load is applied perpendicular to the A uniform load of 275 psi is applied in E = modulus of elasticity in psi cross section of interest. The most common determine the deflection of the plate. P Solving the deflection equation using this modulus value gives: τ P δmax = 3(275)(0. The units of shear δmax 3pr4(5-4ν−ν2) = stress (psi) are the same as for tensile or 16Et3 σmax = 3(275)(0.0206 inches.20)3 τ = AP D = 0.

In this expression.023 = J. T. The bending This equation is useful for converting stress-strain curve with a stress value of moment is replaced with a twisting permissible tensile-strain limits to 2 times τ. The distance c now represents the twist in radians can be calculated given 277. L is the length of the The polar moment of inertia for the shaft and G is the shear modulus of the round cross section is: material.000 psi. or 6.000157)(100. for a circular cross section.14)(0.1 inch. is analogous to deflection.370 psi / 0. the shear modulus can be approximated J = πd4 / 32 = (3. A torque of 5 inch.2-inch-diameter. or 0. curve in figure 3-2 gives a secant is replaced by a polar moment of inertia. It can be related to tensile and therefore E. ϕ = TL / JG twist. calculate secant modulus from the tensile stress formula.38)] ≈ 100.1) / (0. strain. we need G. = 0. Lastly. Combining the relations Shear stress is the primary type of stress strain using the approximate relation: for G and γ and replacing the moduli in parts that experience torsional or with their stress/strain definitions gives twisting loads. 0.370 psi. (d = shaft diameter) ≈ 277. Using the 23°C moment.000157 inch ratio using the relation: For this case. c = d / 2. Note that the conversion factor between radians and degrees is 180/π. Assuming linear elasticity.Torsion The strain produced in torsion is a shear To find the angle of twist. The E maximum shear stress in the shaft is then: G≈ 2(1+ν) τ = Tc / J = (5)(0.159 radians pounds is applied to activate the latch.2)4 / 32 from the tensile modulus and Poisson’s = 0.5-inch-long.362)] defined as: of a torsional latch.185 psi 66 . γ.000 / [2(1+0. It is Makrolon polycarbonate shaft is part = (5)(0. This yields the G ≈ Es / [2(1+ν)] following formula: ϕ = 2γL / d.000157) = 3. The stress formula for γ ≈ (1+ν)ε the relation: σ ≈ 2τ. σb = Mc / I.362 psi Tc τ= J Example 3-4: Torsion of a Round Shaft The calculated angle of twist is then: For the torsion problem the angle of A 0. ϕ. and the moment of inertia permissible shear-strain limits.1 degrees TL Find the shear stress in the shaft and the ϕ= JG resulting angle of twist. This allows us to torsion is analogous to the bending. distance from the centroid of the section the shear strain and geometry by: to the outer surface. = 9.5) / [(0. the angle of modulus of about 6.

For the example of a final part costs. wall thickness.06 0.100-inch wall thickness.25-inch dome increases the stiffness in the molding process to maximize the by about 300%.03 0. stiffness of your design. Taking steps early in the disk rigidly supported at the perimeter. and material affecting part stiffness and load-carrying of crown height on stiffness in a circular selection. 10-inch-diameter disk with a 0. Figure 3-17 shows the effect shape. we see that adding a Take advantage of the design flexibility 0. and other options. The different stiffness.05 0. design stage to select a good basic shape The graph shows relative stiffness — can avoid expensive and/or troublesome stiffness domed divided by stiffness flat measures later in the product develop.08 h/D DESIGNING FOR STIFFNESS Part Shape Crowns round the surface to form a slightly domed shape that adds consid- You can use a variety of options to In many applications. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued Crown Height vs.07 0. Stiffness Figure 3-17 8 7 t P 0 10 = h D/t 6 D 75 t= D/ 5 0 =5 4 D/t STIFFENING FACTOR 3 5 D/t = 2 2 1 0 0.04 0. Selecting inherently stiffer curves represent disk-diameter-to-disk- shapes seldom adds significantly to the thickness ratios. Consider crowns or corrugations for large surfaces. This section will discuss these capabilities. 67 .02 0. Flat surfaces lack inherent stiffness. ribs. the overall part erable stiffness with little additional improve part stiffness including overall shape is the predominant design factor material.01 0. — plotted against the ratio of dome ment to achieve the desired strength and height to disk diameter.

Noncosmetic parts frequently rely on increases stiffness and reduces the When possible. such as can be adjusted to achieve the desired stiffening profile (see figure 3-20). Plastic housings often contain height and spacing of corrugated features strengthen unsupported edges with a rigid internal components. The box-shaped parts. use other components corrugations to increase stiffness and hourglass-shaped warpage common in of the assembly to provide additional distribute loads (see figure 3-18). Figure 3-18 Corrugation Figure 3-19 Curved Side Walls Corrugations can add stiffness to noncosmetic parts. Cosmetic parts usually must preferably a straight-draw profile that sinks. Design permitting. 68 . Stiffening Profiles for Edges Figure 3-20 Flexible Stiffer Long. and heat stiffness. exhibit low stiffness. stiffness. such as those on the sidewalls of box-shaped parts. Corrugation features usually avoid the molds without side-action mechanisms. which could add support to disguise corrugations as styling features. metal shields. maintains uniform wall thickness and load-bearing surfaces. cooling fans. Adding curvature to the sidewalls enhances stiffness and appearance. filling and read-through problems sometimes encountered with reinforcing ribs. unsupported edges. They also tend to warp during molding. Adding curvature to the sidewalls (see figure 3-19) Stiffening profiles increase the stiffness of sidewalls and edges.

forms hollow shapes from separately molded parts. Generally difficult to mold via conven- tional methods. manufacturability and eco- nomic considerations have made full- scale production of high-quality plastic hollow parts difficult. In gas-assist molding. The lost-core process. plastic parts perform better in Figure 3-21 Hollow-Shaped Parts compression than in flexure or tension. low-melt tempera- ture core to mold intricate hollow shapes. high-pressure gas is injected into the melt stream behind the flow front to produce hollow sections. center walls. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued Typically. Hollow Channels The hollow channels can augment stiff- ness in weak areas such as unsupported edges or provide major support in areas Gas-assist channels add stiffness to unsupported edges and subject to high loads. used to manufacture the engine manifold part shown in figure 3-21. withstand the loads and vibrations of the application. This process can create networks of hollow channels for stiffening (see figure 3-22). To maximize part stiffness. load-bearing areas. Until recently. design the nonappearance. a growing tech- nology. the Figure 3-22 Gas-Assist Channels multi-shell process. or ribs that add support to the underside of the upper half. bottom half of an assembly with hollow towers. Another process for producing similar hollow parts. hollow profiles can provide high levels of stiffness. which are joined later by welding or overmolding. employs a sacrificial. 69 . The hollowed sections function both as air ducts and as stiffening members that The hollow shape of this lost-core manifold adds both function and high rigidity.

Molding-related issues. limit the available wall thickness range 0. 70 . greater than other common structural materials to achieve the same stiffness without geometry changes.0 1. relatively small Material Replacing Steel (106 psi) Factor (ETF) increases in thickness can reduce Lustran ABS 0. Because good molding practice calls for would need to be 4. A 25% increase in Makrolon PC 0. molding and economic factors practical thickness limits well below room temperature.0 strength-to-weight performance.4 thickness nearly doubles the stiffness of Bayblend PC/ABS 0. to have the same stiffness. typically set a flat shape and short-term loading at In reality.33 4.25 inches for most solid thermoplastics. local need for additional stiffness often results in an overall thickness increase.36 4. packing diffi.2 deflection greatly.3 a simple plastic surface. solve the following equation: Table 3-6 shows the wall-thickness rela- tionships between various materials and tequivalent = tcurrent(Ecurrent / Eproposed)1/3 steel to give the same deflection for a given load.4 wall thickness to improve stiffness is a Durethan PA 6 (30% GF) 0. The table shows that. a flat shape for stiffening. most This table shows how many times thicker than steel various materials would need to be to yield parts made of plastic would have to the same deflection under a given load.4 simple solution.0 1.73 3. To estimate the equivalent thickness of adding both part weight and cost. The ETF assumes a flat shape and short-term loading have wall thicknesses several times at room temperature. it is not always practical. Aluminum 10. a polycarbonate than in steel.34 4.38 4. While adding Makroblend PC Blend 0. culties. a uniform thickness throughout a part.Wall Thickness Table 3-6 Equivalent Thickness Because stiffness is proportional to Flexural Modulus Equivalent Thickness thickness cubed.4 times thicker in such as shrinkage stress. and cycle times. other materials or material combina- tions.4 Although they generally offer excellent Steel 29. The equivalent-thickness where t is thickness and E is the appro- factor (ETF) listed in this table assumes priate flexural or tensile modulus.

Chapter 3
STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued

Example 3-5: Equivalent Thickness Figure 3-23 Doubling Stiffness

If an existing aluminum part is 0.030-
inch thick (tcurrent), what thickness
(tproposed) does an identical part made 2 in
t
of a 50% glass-filled polyamide 6 need
to be for equivalent flexural rigidity?
The flexural modulus of aluminum is t = 0.100 in
Volume = 0.200 in3
10,000,000 psi (Ecurrent). The flexural Stiffness = x
1 in
modulus of a 50% glass-filled
polyamide 6 is 1,116,000 psi after
conditioning (Eproposed).
Increase
Thickness
tequiv = 0.030(10,000,000 / 1,116,000)1/3
= 0.062 inch
t = 0.126 in
The equivalent thickness (tequiv) Volume = 0.252 in3
Stiffness = 2x
equals 0.062 inch. Depending upon
your application, you should apply a
0.050 in
suitable safety factor. 0.116 in

Calculations of equivalent thickness for Add Rib
long-term loads or loads at temperatures
other than room temperature should
substitute the appropriate creep-modulus t = 0.100 in
Volume = 0.214 in3
or secant-modulus values for the current Stiffness = 2x
and proposed materials.

In this example, adding a rib to double stiffness increases part volume
Ribs by only 7% as compared to 25% when the part thickness is increased.

Ribs provide a means to increase stiffness
without increasing wall thickness.
Figure 3-23 shows the relative amount doubles the part stiffness with much specific areas and directions. Plastic
of material needed to double the stiffness less material than simply increasing the part designs often require ribs to
of a flat part, both by increasing thick- part thickness. Because they are usually strengthen and stiffen structural elements
ness and by adding ribs. Adding a rib thinner than the main-wall sections, ribs such as hinges, attachment features, and
seldom add to the molding-cycle time. load points.
Ribs also add stiffness selectively in

71

Bidirectional ribs stiffen surfaces sub- Chair-Base Ribs Figure 3-24
jected to pure deflection or sagging-type
loading. Parts subjected to both bending
and twisting loads, such as chair star
bases, need diagonal-rib patterns (see
figure 3-24). Figure 3-25 shows a com-
mon diagonal-rib design for chair base
members. The deep U-shape provides
primary strength and stiffness. The deep
diagonal ribs add torsional support and
resist buckling in the U-channel. The rib
thickness is a compromise between
what is needed for mold filling and
strength, and the maximum thickness
that will produce a cosmetically accept-
able part. Overly thick ribs can lead to
read-through on the cosmetic upper sur- The U-shaped sections with deep diagonal ribs provide the strength
face. For this reason, limit rib thickness and stiffness required for chair bases.
to about 1/2 the nominal part thickness.

Two factors determine the performance normalized resistance to bending. Ribs The rib’s moment of inertia is propor-
of ribbed structures: the moment of increase the moment of inertia of plate tional to its height cubed, and linear to
inertia (I), which indicates resistance structures subjected to bending loads the width (for a rectangular section,
to bending; and the section modulus thereby increasing stiffness. I = bh3 / 12). Because of this property,
(Z = I / c), which reflects centroid- tall ribs add greater stiffness and rigidity
than short ribs. Ribs that are too tall can
cause difficulties: when the edge of ribs
lies too far from the section’s center of
Figure 3-25 Diagonal Ribs gravity, the resulting outer-fiber stress
can exceed material limits, reducing
strength in spite of an increase in stiffness.

Section A-A

A
7 3–4 2.5 – 3.5
4
1.5

A Dimensions in mm

Typical rib design for chair-base applications.

72

Chapter 3
STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued

Replace tall ribs with multiple, shorter LONG-TERM LOADING
ribs to reduce stress to acceptable levels
while maintaining required stiffness. Generally, long-term loading is either a
The three rib options in figure 3-26 constant applied load or a constant
provide roughly the same rigidity. induced strain. Plastic parts subjected to
Option A is too thick and will lead to a constant load, such as pressure vessels
sink on the opposite surface. Option B or structures supporting weight, tend to
is too tall and may see excessive stress creep and show increased deformation
along the rib edge. The pair of ribs in over time. Other design elements, such
option C represents a good compromise as a press-fit boss or spring finger,
between strength, stiffness, and mold- undergo continuous, fixed deformation
ability. When designing ribbed structures, or strain. These features stress relax
consider the moldability guidelines for over time and show a loss in retention
ribs outlined in Chapter 2. force. See the Long-Term Mechanical
Properties section in this chapter
for an explanation of creep and
stress relaxation.

Creep data, such as isochronous
stress-strain curves, provide a means
for predicting a material’s behavior.

Equivalent Ribs Figure 3-26

Too Thick Too Tall Better

These three rib
H options provide
1.26 H
H t t t t roughly the same
2 2 2 rigidity for a vertical
load. Multiple ribs
often provide better
t performance than
single ribs that are
A B C either too thick or
too tall.

73

prolonged strain at a constant temperature.250 2. Isochronous Stress-Strain Figure 3-27 Figure 3-27 shows a typical set of time- 70 dependent curves at 40°C for Makrolon No. Except for environ- 20 mental effects the material’s elasticity 10 does not decrease over time. generally 0 resulting in a ±10% margin of error. 0 deformation occurs over time in 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 response to a constant load. nor does its strength. Each 60 1 1 2 10 curve represents the material behavior 3 100 40°C 4 1.750 subjected to constant. While the instantaneous tensile modulus of the STRAIN ( ε ) (%) material remains constant. This test is more 750 difficult than the test for creep that mea- sures the change in deflection over time 500 in a specimen under constant stress.000 for different loading durations. Creep (apparent) modulus decreases over time. the apparent modulus decreases over time (see figure Isochronous stress-strain curve for Makrolon PC at 40°C. 3-28). We use this hypothetical.000 creep. 74 . Because of viscoelasticity. 2.500 stress relaxation involves varying the 1. time- dependent creep modulus to predict the amount of sag or deformation that occurs Creep Modulus vs. 10-1 100 101 10 2 10 3 10 4 105 TIME (hours) Creep modulus for Makrolon PC at 40°C. For 250 this reason. Measuring 1.000 Stress relaxation is the decrease in stress that occurs in a material that is 1. Time Figure 3-28 over time.000 6 100. 30 Many people confuse actual modulus STRESS (σ) (MPa) and creep modulus. Hours 2800-series polycarbonate resins. creep curves are often used to calculate stress relaxation. but the actual modulus remains constant. To predict 50 5 10.000 load over a period of time to maintain CREEP MODULUS (MPa) a constant strain rate. substitute an apparent modulus for the instantaneous elastic or Young’s 40 1 2 3 4 5 6 modulus in structural calculations.

000 hour curve. the result is the same as in neous value of 350.38)-(0.800 233. 0. read vertically curves at 40°C as shown in figure 3-27. you can calculate an apparent As in the short-term case.333 0.59 75 . this lower example 3-3: Example 3-7: Stress Relaxation apparent modulus will account for the added deflection that occurs because σmax = 4.900 psi corresponds to roughly 5% force of the arm? After one month relaxation.0694 inches 3-27). has a tensile stress of 2. (20 MPa) and a load duration of 1.200 183.000 The deflection at 10. To find the appropriate modulus value metal part in position.333 0.900 psi figure 3-15.000 hours is nearly hours.080-inch thick and 0.67 4 6 x 10 (6 Years) 2.500 1.000 psi to calculate drops from an instantaneous value of the actual deflection after 10. you can see that for an modulus by dividing stress by strain. hours)? After six years (~6 x 104 hours)? applied strain of 2%.000 hours. a stress of inch.38)2] strain on the curve for the selected load Find the deflection in the circular plate = 16(98. using the curves in strain. the first step triple the instantaneous value of 0. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued To find the apparent modulus from Example 3-6: Plate Deflection 3pr4(5-4ν-ν2) isochronous strain-strain data.000 hours. Calculate the apparent (creep) (~103 hours)? After one year (~104 figure 3-27.1 through the isochronous stress-strain On the 10.25-inch For a given strain.20)3 duration.902 psi A permanently deflected polycarbonate of creep when it is substituted into cantilever snap arm is used to hold a deflection calculations. 5.900 psi (20 MPa) after 10. For example.75)4[5-4(0.750 312. Because the inches! isochronous stress-strain curve. The deflection of the arm is 0.000 hours.072 psi (35 MPa) to approximately 2. the tensile stress Use the result of 98.0243 modulus of 166.2% Er Force (Hours) Strain (psi) (Pounds) 10-1 (6 Min) 3.500 208.000)(0.00 3 10 (1 Month) 2.75 104 (1 Year) 2. Table 3-7 σ (psi) Retention Time at 1. The arm is 1-inch requires a set of isochronous stress-strain long. Again. stress calculation does not depend on Significantly lower than the instanta. What is the instantaneous retention curves to predict the effects of stress 4. wide. modulus. if a flat part made of example 3-3 after 10. divide Considering Creep δmax = 16Ecreept3 the calculated stress by the corresponding 3(275)(0.333 0. The of polycarbonate at 40°C (see figure geometry and loading are shown in = 0.000 psi.000 psi from the is to calculate the stress.

passes through the part and interacts with including: its geometry.First. load yield strength decreases. force drops by 25% in the first month. Design features such as sharp corners. Plastic parts designed for impact properties. materials become more ductile. As figure 3-29 shows. using figure 3-10. This H can be derived from y = PL3 / 3EI Brittle Lo ighe we r S r T tra (Table 3-5) and letting E = σb / ε. parts and must be addressed in part temperatures. STRAIN ( ε ) Note that the drop off in retention force is proportional to the drop in stress. find the strain level in the arm Brittle and Ductile Behavior Figure 3-29 from the formula shown below. and become sharper. initi- ating fracture. in thickness can focus this energy.1)(0.012) Ductile and find the retention force using P = 3ErIy / L3.2% strain on the desired time curves. As corners or notches • Energy dissipation. address energy management impact causes a high energy wave that issues early in the design process. The initial retention DESIGNING FOR IMPACT As ambient temperature increases.2% strain we r T r S em 2L2 2(1. For this reason.08) Lo ighe ε = ___ _________ = 1. rate or rate of loading on mechanical behavior. but the strain- six years. it becomes of paramount your part will be exposed to impact importance in impact applications. the part’s impact • Material impact properties. The then by an additional 16% over the next As discussed earlier in this chapter. The results are shown in Table 3-7. For Effects of strain rate and temperature on material behavior. An strains. notches. a given strain. holes. While this become stiffer and more brittle at high is an important goal in good design strain rates and low temperatures. Then calculate STRESS ( σ ) the relaxation modulus (Er = σ / 0. and steps • Stress concentration. em in pe Ra rat te ur e H 3yh = 3(0. 76 . the stress drops a similar amount during each logarithmic increase in time period. If practice. it may have better impact design. plastics Avoid stress concentrations. designs that duration and ambient temperature affect at-break value increases.0)2 tra per in atu Ra re te Now. Although rely on such retention forces are not the mechanical performance of plastic a part will be less rigid at elevated recommended in thermoplastics. find the stress corresponding to 1. because it can absorb more must also consider the effect of strain energy before failing.

010 in R = 0. accommodate controlled flexure. Increasing the notch forms the visible knit lines. In some instances. loads including those found in the In addition. 16 to 18 2 to 4 ft-lb/in ft-lb/in Effect of notch radius on the Izod impact strength of polycarbonate. The area around gates generally removing or redistributing ribs to • Address all temperatures and impact has higher levels of molded-in stress. following design tips: microcracks and internal stresses leading to stress concentrations. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued performance will diminish. For example.005 to 0.010 inch increases the Izod impact strength by about Designers often attempt to enhance • Avoid boxy shapes that concentrate 400%. While this corners. consider the for instance. Therefore. improper gate removal can Consider the following rules of thumb manufacturing process and shipping. Figure 3-30 lines typically exhibit lower strength • If using multiple ribs. 77 .005 in • Check flow orientation — especially in fiber-filled materials — and the difference between flow and cross- flow mechanical properties. in this way can often have the opposite • Use rounded shapes to spread impact effect. and adding When selecting a plastic material post-molding operations. Look for potential problems from thickness beyond the critical thickness sources other than part design. and • Round inside corners and notches to can sometimes work. impact energy. and R = 0. impact performance by adding ribs or impact forces on rigid edges and increasing wall thickness. radius from 0. space them shows the effect of notch radius on the than other areas and can concentrate unevenly or orient them to prevent Izod impact performance of unfilled stresses along the fine V-notch that resonance amplification from the polycarbonate resin. ribs can introduce stress-concentration for impact applications. Often a better strategy is to design the • Select a material with good impact part to flex. stiffening the part reduce stress concentrations. increasing the part forces over larger areas. Machining. such as can lead to brittle failure. that will not be subjected to high impact this can involve reducing thickness and forces. so it can absorb and distribute performance throughout the part’s Position gates and knit lines in areas the impact energy. can leave deep scratches. leave rough edges and notches. points that initiate cracks and part failure. working-temperature range. Knit to improve impact performance: • Consider notch sensitivity of the material in applications with unavoidable notches and stress Stress Concentration Figure 3-30 concentrators.

See the trators. For this Cycles to Failure Figure 3-31 8 6 PC/PET 4 PC STRESS (103 psi) ABS Fatigue 2 performance for representative grades of ABS and 0 PC plotted with data 1. such as holes. avoid stress concen. subjected to heavy vibrations or repeated for parts subjected to dynamic loading. fatigue mode. allow. Fatigue data to screen potential materials. These curves show the stress performance.000 1. deflections such as snowplow headlight Reversing loads place more severe isons of material impact performance or assemblies.000. In areas in the form of S-N curves (see figure prototype test your final material in subjected to fatigue. and determines which material fatigue data part geometry. fatigue applies. failure for different cyclic. A reduced. reversing- Bayer publication Material Selection for notches. Optimize the design to distribute deflection over large areas. Generally scarce. one-piece salad tongs. temperature. Use test data only for general compar.000 10. and nearly impossible to endurance in applications or features and strain limits at various temperatures apply quantitatively with good accuracy.000 for Makroblend UT- 1018 PC/PET resin. 3-12) show the number of cycles until actual. material impact data than parts made of the same material the fatigue properties section of this are difficult to relate to actual part under static loading.The complex nature of plastic performance FATIGUE APPLICATIONS snap-latch arm subjected to few deflec- in impact has led to the development of tions over the product life. and thickness load modes. and temperature extremes may require impact modes. knit lines. sharp corners.000 1. conditions of your application. Many factors affect fatigue performance including notch effects. Consider fatigue chapter. and demands on plastic parts.000 100. Always high-use snap-latch closures.000. more information on impact properties. gates. data is seldom available for the precise able strain limit may suffice in a simple. Calculations a variety of impact tests in an attempt to Fatigue can cause rigid plastic parts for parts subjected to many deflections predict material performance in different exposed to cyclic loading to fail at sub. in-use environments. variations. CYCLES TO FAILURE 78 . The type and severity of fatigue loading loading frequency. Despite the many stantially lower stress or strain levels data of the type shown in figure 3-13 in specialized tests. single-point.

To avoid fatigue failures at inside corners.0 h • Reducing stress and strain levels as 1. Sharp inside corners act as stress concentrators. Effects of a fillet radius on stress concentration.4 0.0 1. Design efforts in fatigue applications generally 3. and 2. select the largest fillet radius the design can tolerate without excessive sink and packing problems.030 inch provide a good compromise between fatigue performance and part moldability.2 1. and can lead to much higher stress levels than those indicated by standard formulas. it is difficult to predict fatigue Fillet Radius and Stress Concentration Figure 3-32 performance quantitatively.5 • Using available data to select a suit- able.8 1. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued reason. the stress concentration factor climbs quickly to much higher values. As the ratio of root radius to beam thickness becomes less than about 0.5 much as possible. 79 .0 P focus on the following: Stress Concentration Factor R 2. Typically fillet radii of 0.2.0 Often you must screen your material 0. 1.6 0.015 to 0.2 0. Figure 3-32 shows the effects of a fillet radius on stress concentration in a snap-arm member. fatigue-resistant resin.4 R/h choices based on general fatigue data of the type shown in figure 3-31.

6) = (3.5 (4.5 (0.0) part length.0) by the temperature difference and the Polypropylene 5.3 (2.0 (12. When inches if the ends were not fixed.0) *glass-filled resins 80 . the polycar.8) upper temperature limit.8 (6. with screws ABS GF* 1.1) CLTE for the two materials.3 (2.4) range of temperatures.5) Figure 3-33 gives an example of a long PPS GF* 1. resulting Brass 1.0013 = 0.013 / 10.8 (10.0 (7.7 (3.3) x 10-5 • (120-70) • 10 Elastomeric = 0.9-1. deflection divided by the length between Nylon GF* 1.8) ∆L = (αplastic-αmetal) • ∆T • L Polyethylene 7. making Coefficient-of-linear-thermal-expansion the part bow. expressed as a percentage: Polyester GF* 1. which act as Acrylic 3.2) expansion equals the difference in the Nylon 4.0) bonate shield will expand much more PC/ABS Blend 4.0) placed ten inches apart. the shield effec- Composite RIM 0. This gauge The difference in thermal expansion Polypropylene has an in-use temperature range from induces strain in the polycarbonate GF* 1.4) Polyester 6. stress concentrators.9 (7.4 (2. This induced stress is amplified Acetal GF* 2.2) than the aluminum housing.013 inches.13% GF* 1.7 (3.8 (1. Cooling the assembly by in/in/°Fx10-5 (CLTE) values for plastics vary widely 50°F to its lower limit would cause the Material (mm/mm/°Cx10-5) and are generally much higher than polycarbonate shield to shrink 0.0 (7.5) temperature and then heated to the at the mounting holes.0 (10. Acetal 5.8 (1.3) the screws. When assembled at room shield.2) 20° to 120°F.013 Glass 0.0 (1.5 (8.8 (3.00) / 100 Polycarbonate a polycarbonate impact shield rigidly = 0. Polycarbonate 3. Steel 0. Coefficients of Linear Thermal Expansion (CLTE) for Common THERMAL LOADING This expansion variation causes the Table 3-8 Materials polycarbonate shield to compress. multiplied ABS 5. you must account tively stretches 0.013 inch RIM Unfilled 7.9) those for metals (see table 3-8).3) materials.0 (9.5 (2.7) gauge housing made of aluminum with applied strain = (0.0) attached at both ends.8) for the expansion differences between in an overall applied strain equal to the Aluminum 1.4) designing parts that will be exposed to a Because they are fixed. This Elastomeric RIM GF* 4.8 (14.0 (9.

81 . A Design Guide for more information. Refer to the Joining Dissimilar Materials section of Bayer’s Joining Techniques. The slotted hole and sliding attachment at one end of the plastic cover in the lower assembly enable it to accommodate the thermal expansion difference with the metal base. choose an attach- ment method that allows the plastic component to slide relative to the other material. Chapter 3 STRUCTURAL DESIGN continued Thermal Expansion Figure 3-33 To avoid the problem. affix a screw to one end of the shield and design a slotted screw hole on the other end to accommodate expansion and contraction. In the aforementioned example.

82 .

or other joining techniques. the optimization Two-Piece with Snap-On Gear process should address disassembly for repair and recycling. and roll pin. Closely scruti. welding. consider consolidating the number shaft and gear design that needs no of parts in a given design. In addition to cost and quality concerns. This chapter addresses assembly primarily as it relates to thermoplastic part design. a two-piece. These methods and their design implications are discussed in this chapter. snap-on gear design. PART CONSOLIDATION shows several options for attaching a gear to a shaft: a three-piece design. Optimizing part assembly should begin with the concept stage and continue through product development and Three-Piece Assembly with Roll Pin production. gear. By way of example. Chapter 4 DESIGN FOR ASSEMBLY Virtually every finished part requires Gear-to-Shaft Attachment Options Figure 4-1 some assembly: mechanical fasteners. 83 . A variety of factors — includ- nize your total design for opportunities to ing required strength. improving automation. Consider consolidating parts. and a one-piece ations. figure 4-1 these design options is most feasible. and reduce the number of assembly oper. please request a copy of Joining Techniques and/or Snap-Fit Joints for Plastics from your Bayer representative. snap-fit joints. At each stage look for opportunities to simplify and improve the assembly. featuring To lessen the need for fastening hardware a shaft. Well- designed parts include features to ease assembly and assure correct positioning and orientation. and moldability — determine which of bly count. bonding. and selecting other assembly methods. assembly. wear properties. For more specific information about various joining techniques and guidelines for One-Piece Molded Gear and Shaft their use with Bayer resins. Good communica- tion and cooperation between the vari- ous design and engineering disciplines is essential. reducing fastener and assembly steps. combine function and reduce final assem.

bolts. As Hardware Molded In an example. molded-in hinges. custom. To reduce costs. They also add to the cost of dismantling products for repair or recycling. MECHANICAL FASTENERS Mechanical fasteners — screws. tory control and automation processes. Whenever possible. figure 4-2 shows several examples of molded-in alternatives to cable-guide hardware. or low-production fasteners. latches. Brackets off-the-shelf varieties to lower costs. consider replacing mechanical fasteners with Double Snap Projection snap-fit joints. Use interlocking and/or nesting features to reduce the number of screws needed. as well as reduce unit cost. and others — and their installation Screw Retainer Wall Tab often represent a large portion of total assembly costs. Full Surround. Avoid expensive. the cost savings in hardware and assembly C-Hole far exceed the added costs of mold Cable-Tie Retainer modification and materials. When you must use fasteners. choose Alternating from the multitude of inexpensive. standardize fasteners to simplify inven- Molded-in features can replace cable-guide hardware. 84 . Slot and Retainer Clip Additionally. unless Pegs and the performance advantage justifies the Adhesive-Backed Floor Tab additional costs. Pegs and rivets. Usually. Snap-In and other similar design features. many specialty fasteners for almost any type of application are available such as the spring-clip fasteners in figure 4-3. Cable Guides Figure 4-2 Consider design options that eliminate or reduce the need for hardware.

and Hex holes captivate nuts during assembly. as well as reduce assembly and disas- sembly costs in a wide range of applica- tions. Inexpensive spring- clip fasteners are • Use metal threaded inserts for screw available for many connections subjected to frequent applications. SNAP-FIT JOINTS Both economical and versatile. Dart Clip • Avoid handling loose washers — use screws with washers affixed under the head. snap joints can eliminate fastening hardware. For example. Other Round Clip ideas to consider include: • Select good-quality screws with shaft-to-head-diameter ratios and head styles suited to automatic feed in assembly equipment. Varieties include cantilever snap-arms. all snap-fit joints rely upon the brief deflection of a flexible member to interlock a depression or undercut with a protrusion on a mating part. Although they vary in appearance. Chapter 4 DESIGN FOR ASSEMBLY continued Spring Clips Figure 4-3 Consider simplifying installation. disassembly. Cap-Type • Use self-tapping screws to avoid a Stud Receiver Push On secondary tapping step. 85 . and • Consult Bayer’s Joining Techniques for more information on mechanical Hex Hole Figure 4-4 fastening. use hex holes to captivate nuts Thread-Engaging Thread-Engaging during assembly (see figure 4-4).

0% Durethan (30%) PA cond. 2 Bayblend PC/ABS 2.9% Snap-fit joints provide both secure Durethan PA cond. Rounded lids — such as on film canis- Snap-Fit Joints Figure 4-5 ters or food-storage containers — use Unreinforced annular snap-fit designs for continuous Apec High Heat PC 4. such as areas.0% electrical connectors.5% components for repair and recycling.0% Module for Control Panels with Some rules of thumb for designing Triax PA/ABS 3.0% h attachment and a good seal. 6. Special snap-joint designs can also act Permissible sembled without first deflecting the snap as latches for access doors and panels. Makrolon (20%) PC 2. 2.0% attachment and easy disconnection of dry 4. Makrolon PC 4.5% h Centrex ASA 1. Blends 3.2% allowable strain limit of the material. separated later. an angled undercut contact can be disas. cantilever arm. Multiple snap arms or a combination of Table 4-1 Limits at 23°C (73°F) snap arms and rigid undercuts can often secure covers and panels (see figure 4-7). snap-fit joints • Avoid sharp corners in high-stress (see figure 4-5). replacing more. Snap-fit designs with expensive screws (see figure 4-6).torsional or annular snap-joint styles If designed properly.2% 30 – 45° during snapping does not exceed the Triax (15%) PA/ABS 2.0% • Design parts so that the flexing dry 1. undeflected position operation). The shape of the can secure parts of assemblies. use about 60% of these values. They also facilitate Lustran ABS 1.4% Four Cantilever Lugs snap-fit joints include: Glass-Fiber-Reinforced (% Glass) • Design parts so that the flexure Makrolon (10%) PC 2. 86 .5% member of the snap-fit joint returns General guide data for the allowable short- a) b) term strain for snap joints (single joining Separable Inseparable to a relaxed. rejoining. Torsion Bar Snap-Fitting Arm with Torsion Bar Varieties of snap-joint types. for frequent separation and Annular Snap Joint after assembly.8% quick and easy detachment of electrical Makroblend Polycarb. Short-Term Strain feature to disengage the connection. such as at the base of a undercut determines if the joint can be solenoids and switches.

and assembly of the thickness of the part wall. surface no more than 1/2 to 2/3 permissible deflection. including: • Avoid excessively large radii that could lead to sinks or voids. and conform to standard. snap-fit joints must concentrations. Multiple snap arms secure cover in this assembly. ease release from the mold. Snap Arms Figure 4-6 Snap-Fit Assembly Figure 4-7 Positioning posts and snap arms eliminate screws and speed assembly. • Avoid thin-wall sections that could lead to filling problems. make snap arms that Bayer publication Snap-Fit Joints for project perpendicular to the part Plastics explains how to calculate strain. Consult this publication for additional • Draft snap-arms as you would ribs to information on snap-fit joint design. part-design guidelines. Table 4-1 shows the permissible strain limits for various Bayer materials. and forces for various types of snap-fit joints. 87 .015 inch to reduce stress requirements. The • As with ribs. Chapter 4 DESIGN FOR ASSEMBLY continued • Round corners to a minimum radius In addition to meeting functional of 0.

Annular designs can be particularly difficult to mold. Snap Arm Figure 4-8 Consider molding issues early in part Snap-fit features intended for automated design. In many applications. In some designs. Limited-access and equipment used. Some need collapsible cores or WELDING AND BONDING ejector sleeves. room for a slide mechanism. snap arms on repair. or when less-expensive joining frequently used doors or access panels methods suffice. rather than a tilt- straight-draw. assembly. the proximity components. Consult an Welding and bonding techniques offer undercut. one-direction motion. or other mechanisms to clear or eject they provide the only viable methods of Thumb Tab Figure 4-9 undercuts. or tapering the arm thickness in these Special “U”-shaped snap latch with thumb tab. doors could have hidden snap-fit joints or require special tools. Some applications may require modifications in the snap arm to prevent excessive material strain during deflection. design simple. For example. minimize the mix of techniques opening (see figure 4-9). situations (see figure 4-10). experienced mold engineer before a wide variety of excellent joining and specifying any design that uses slides assembly options. Both of these methods provide permanent bonds. reducing the undercut. snap-fit joints (see figure and-push or slide-and-push motion. The Snap Fit Draw 4-8). 88 . Avoid welding and The molding process offers the versatility bonding when using materials that will to customize snap-fit designs for each have to be separated for recycling or application. Avoid designs that require of the snap-fit joint to other part or more than two hands to engage or mold features does not leave enough release a snap-fit joint. which can be problematic Snap-fit hook molded through hole to form and difficult to maintain. and -maintenance costs. Consider lengthening the snap arm. rather than ones that need slides in opposite may be true for hand-assembled the mold. To lower mold-construction assembly should join with a simple. When you must weld could have finger tabs added for easier or bond.

Chapter 4
DESIGN FOR ASSEMBLY continued

This section deals with the broader Ultrasonic Welding joint area where frictional heating melts
aspects of welding and bonding and the plastic and forms the weld. When
their effects on part and assembly Ultrasonic welding, one of the designing parts that will be ultrasonically
design. For more specific information most widely used joining techniques, welded, consider the following:
on welding and bonding, request a is an excellent bonding method for
copy of Joining Techniques from your thermoplastics. It makes permanent, • For strong, consistent welds, ultra-
Bayer representative. aesthetically pleasing joints, at relatively sonic joints need properly designed
high rates of speed. In this welding energy directors (see figure 4-11) or
Common welding methods, including technique, an ultrasonic assembly unit shear weld features;
ultrasonic, vibration, hot plate, spin, and generates mechanical vibratory energy
induction, each have specific advantages, at ultrasonic frequencies. The ultrasonic • The equipment size and welding-horn
as well as design and equipment require- vibrational energy is transmitted design limitations determine the size
ments. These are discussed below. through one of the mating parts to the and number of ultrasonic welds per
operation;

Snap Arms Figure 4-10 Energy Director Figure 4-11

Excessive Strain

W

60 – 90°

0.25W

Alternatives to Reduce Strain

Longer Thinner Reduced Tapered
Arm Arm Undercut Arm

Short, thick snap arms with large undercuts can experience Typical energy-director design for Bayer thermoplastics.
excessive strain during deflection. Consider lengthening or thinning
the arm, reducing the undercut or tapering the arm to reduce strain.

89

• Mating materials must be compatible Vibration and Hot-Plate Welding For permanent, non-cosmetic welds
and rigid enough to transmit the along a single plane, hot-plate welding
ultrasonic energy to the joint area; and To form continuous welds over large offers an economical joining method.
areas — particularly those too large for In this joining method, a heated platen
• Stray welding energy can damage conventional ultrasonic welding — contacts two plastic parts until the joint
free-standing features and delicate consider vibration or hot-plate welding. area melts slightly. The platen retracts,
components. Consult your welding A friction-welding technique, vibration and the parts are then pressed together
experts for help in resolving this welding requires wide joint surfaces to until the bond sets.
problem. accommodate the sliding vibration.
To avoid dampening the vibration, part Both techniques can produce flash or
For more specific information on geometry must rigidly support the a bead along the joint when applied to
ultrasonic welding, request a copy of mating joint surfaces. In this process, simple butt-weld configurations (see
Joining Techniques from your Bayer one part remains stationary, while the figure 4-12). Consider joint designs
representative. second vibrates on the joint plane, with flash traps (see figure 4-13) for
generating heat. When the joint applications requiring flash-free joints.
interface reaches a melted state, the
parts are aligned and clamped until the
bond has set.

Figure 4-12 Welding Flash Figure 4-13 Flash Traps

Before After

Butt-joint welds result in flash along the joint.

Before After

Variations with flash traps.

90

Chapter 4
DESIGN FOR ASSEMBLY continued

Spin Welding

Spin welding is used extensively to
weld circular parts with continuous
joints. Spin welding relies on frictional
heat generated between mating parts,
one spinning and one stationary, to melt
plastic in a circular joint. After the friction
melts a sufficient amount of plastic in
the joint, the rotating stops and pressure
increases to distribute melted material
and complete the bonding process.

Parts designed for spin welding often
have an alignment feature, such as a
tongue and groove, to index the parts
and make a uniform bearing surface.
Joints for spin welding can also
include flash traps to avoid visible
welding flash.

Solvent and Adhesive Bonding

Probably the most versatile joining
methods, solvent and adhesive bonding
produce permanent bonds. These tech-
niques place few restrictions on the part must work on both materials. If your When selecting an adhesive, consider
design. Solvent bonding joins one plastic part will be made of polycarbonate curing time and cost as well as special
to itself or another plastic by softening resin, allow for vapor dispersion after adhesive system requirements. UV-
small areas on the joining surfaces with bonding. Trapped solvent vapors can cured adhesives, for instance, work best
a volatile solvent. Adhesives are one-part attack and damage polycarbonate resins. with transparent plastic parts. The part
or two-part “glues” that adhere to mat- design must accommodate direct-line-
ing surfaces and cure to form the bond. Adhesive bonding offers more versatility of-sight access from the UV source to
for bonding different types of plastics the bond area or the bond edge.
Solvent bonding limits your choice of together and also dissimilar materials,
materials to plastics for which there such as plastics to metal, plastics to
is a suitable solvent. When bonding glass, fabric to plastic, etc. The Bayer
dissimilar materials, the same solvent brochure Joining Techniques lists various
adhesives and their suitability for use
with different Bayer resin families.

91

features. during assembly. reducing the positioning This joining method permits efficient accuracy needed for assembly (see assembly and simplifies dismantling figure 4-16). RETENTION FEATURES ALIGNMENT FEATURES The molding process offers the freedom To help in assembly. Molded-in assembly features can captivate and retain components without hardware. Chamfers added to either or can captivate components without both leading edges quickly align mating additional attachment (see figure 4-15). requiring more time In some products. sharp leading edges can snag or catch bly without hardware (see figure 4-14). must assemble easily and efficiently. Retention Features Figure 4-14 Assembly Features Figure 4-15 Snap Parts can be captivated between halves of an assembly as in this Latch illustration of a gear held in place between axle posts. Components can nest between ribs or despite minor misalignments. Parts retain components during assembly. Parts with slide into molded-in retainers for assem. consider designing to custom-design features to locate and your part with alignment features. halves of the assembly and effort. 92 . for repairs or recycling.

Bypass fingers ensure proper alignment of sidewalls while maintaining uniform wall thickness. full tongue- Easy and-groove designs split the sidewall thickness into two thin sections. corner often improves this condition. Chapter 4 DESIGN FOR ASSEMBLY continued Lead-In Angles Figure 4-16 Edge Alignment Figure 4-17 Housing or enclosure sidewalls can bow Difficult during molding or deflect under loading. When appearance is important. A some- Edge and Groove what better design. the stepped edge. Rounding or chamfering the transition base and ease assembly. interlocking design for aligning sidewalls. resulting in poor alignment along mating edges. Adding a protruding rib to support the inside Alignment Fingers Figure 4-18 Boss Alignment Figure 4-19 surface locks the walls in two directions and provides better alignment. The astute designer often can modify existing part-design features for positioning and alignment with little added part or mold cost. assembly help to align the lid with the ensure proper edge alignment. A variety of easily molded design options using interlocking alignment fingers can align and secure the sidewalls while main- taining uniform wall thickness (see figure 4-18). When aesthetics are less important. 93 . This design may lead to molding problems Stepped Tongue and lack the required strength. The stepped-edge design supports the wall in just one direction. can have high molding stresses and a Lead-in angles on the lid in the lower Tongue-and-groove or stepped features gloss difference at the thickness transition. On thin sidewalls. choose a more-robust. Other simple options for aligning mating parts include post-in- hole and boss-alignment features (see figure 4-19). consider designing an interlocking edge to correct for this bowing (see figure 4-17). Existing design elements can often be modified to provide positive part alignment as in the angled lead-ins added to these mating screw bosses.

Designing Stamping and machining create part-to- symmetry and allow orientation in more the plastic section with slotted holes part differences in metal components. and prevent assembly errors. than one direction (see figure 4-21).ORIENTATION EXPANSION DIFFERENCES TOLERANCES Adding orienting features to molded Plastic parts are often attached to If all components of an assembly could parts can simplify assembly. For ing parts (see figure 4-20). incorporate features that thermal expansion (CLTE). only minor modifications to increase temperatures (see figure 4-22). molded-plastic part dimensions simplifies assembly. dissimilar levels of expansion. clearly for CLTE differences. Otherwise. fixturing. If your part assigning tolerances would be simple. plastic part tightly attached to a metal it. potential tolerance problems. add features that either mark the correct position or prevent assembly of misaligned components. of certain polyamides and other plastics consider the following: that swell significantly as they absorb moisture. You may guiding. indexing. and welding need to make similar design adjustments present additional sources of variability. reduce components made of materials with be produced and joined with perfect costs. the task of When possible. when joining plastic parts to parts made When developing part tolerances. each manufacturing step are oriented correctly. provides a sliding fit to accommodate Assembly steps such as positioning. For instance. a introduces its own variability and with indicate correct orientation on the mat. Figure 4-20 Orientation Features To ensure proper orientation during assembly. Often parts need ment points when exposed to elevated vary with processing fluctuations. design However. prevent assembly unless components will contain different materials. instance. 94 . much different coefficients of linear repeatability and accuracy. Symmetry component can bow between attach.

tolerances for the lowest overall cost. cover in the lower assembly enable it to accommodate the thermal expansion difference with the metal base. • Avoid specifying arbitrarily tight • Take advantage of the ability of the Exercise discretion when assigning tolerances to components and the injection-molding process to mold available tolerances between the assembly process. Consider all angled lead-ins to lessen the need for the sources of variability and optimize tight tolerances. feature. alignment features. 95 . or process that adds the least • Accommodate part and process • Avoid tight tolerances on long cost to the entire process. Chapter 4 DESIGN FOR ASSEMBLY continued Orientation Symmetry Figure 4-21 Thermal Expansion Figure 4-22 One-Way Assembly Four-Way Assembly Simple modifications can often increase symmetry and The slotted hole and sliding attachment at one end of the plastic simplify assembly. needlessly to costs. repeatability. See the mold design chapter for more information on tolerances. dimensions and on features prone to more economical to loosen the tolerance warpage or distortion. and or mating components. It may be variability in your design. and Give the tightest tolerances to the part. as it can add small features with excellent components and assembly processes. on the plastic component and tighten • Include design features such as the tolerance on the assembly procedure slotted holes.

96 .

Feed Too Heavy in 1. Reduce Feed 97 . reaming. sawing. Unequal Angle on Length 1. Dull Drill 1. specially holes. and 200 feet per minute. drilling and reaming can also polished flutes to reduce friction. Improperly Ground Drill 2. Table 5-1 Common Drilling Troubles and Remedies Fault Probable Cause Remedy Hole Too Large 1. Too Coarse Feed 2. and efficient chip removal — plastics and proper drilling speeds considerably faster feed rates are usually possible. Correct to Remove Heat Breaking of Drill 1. cutting. Dull Drill-Grabs in Work 2. Reduce Feed or Relation to Spindle Speed Increase Speed 2. Under drilling parts made of polycarbonate. as commonly for fabricating prototypes make holes in injection-molded parts well as spiral or helix designs to remove and for trimming or modifying parts when forming the hole would require chips quickly. gumming. Reduce Feed 4. particularly when tion for a range of hole sizes. ideal conditions — good cooling. The suggested drilling speeds for designed drills and bits perform much most Bayer plastics are between 100 and better. Properly Regrind Drill Rough or Burred Hole 1. Too Coarse Feed 3. die holes in thermoformed or prototype Drills for plastics generally have wide. operations described in this section — While most frequently used to form drilling. The machining lists common problems and remedies. Table 5-2 lists induced machining stresses pose the common feed rates in inches per revolu- greatest difficulties. Regrind Properly 2. Regrind Properly 3. sharp Sharp drills and bits designed for drills. Burr on Drill 2. Properly Regrind Drill of Cutting Edge 2. punching. Check Application Setup Chipping of High-Speed Drill 1. Drill-point angles for produced by other processes such as complicated side actions or inserts. 90 degrees. plastics typically range between 60 and thermoforming or extrusion. Chapter 5 MACHINING AND FINISHING Injection-molded parts seldom need to be DRILLING AND REAMING alleviate most difficulties. Follow Manufacturers After Regrinding Recommendations 2. Inadequate Lubrication 4. Table 5-1 machined or finished. Regrind Drill 3. and others — are used more parts. Overheating. Inadequate Chip Clearing 3. Improper Heat Treatment 1. with smaller angles for Although standard drills and bits work smaller holes and larger angles for larger with Bayer thermoplastics.

removes gate vestige or flash from Two-Step Drill Figure 5-1 Drilling Jig Figure 5-2 Fine Cut Plastic Part Drill Bushing Rough Cut Jig The first step removes most of the material.002 – 0. Additionally.004 minimize drill breakage. reaming sharpness longer than standard drills.004 – 0. because for determining final tolerances in they resist gumming and maintain edge prototype parts. making it ideal • Use carbide-tipped drills.001 – 0. Some rules of thumb for drilling thermoplastics include: Reaming creates smooth finishes and precise hole dimensions. For accurate work and to • Use a forced-air stream for cooling.008 figure 5-2). use a drilling jig with a hardened drill bushing. soluble coolant when a forced-air stream cannot provide sufficient cooling.006 using jigs with guide bushings (see Consider a water spray mist or water- 1/2 to 1 0. For accurate work. Or. The second step makes a fine cut to size. because they may create chemical- Then finish and size the hole with a compatibility problems and will have Drilling Conditions second drill. remove • Avoid cutting oils and cooling liquids. 98 . most of the plastic with a roughing drill.002 figure 5-1. Table 5-2 Feed Rate For smoothly drilled holes. 1/8 to 1/4 0. to be removed after drilling.006 – 0. and Drill (in) Feed (in/rev) use a two-step drill as illustrated in Up to 1/8 0. as an alternative method. consider 1/4 to 1/2 0.

As and relatively slow cutting speeds to threads should yield about 75% of the rules of thumb: prevent heat buildup and gumming. feeding. Bayer plastics are best cut on depend on the size of the tap and the band saws or circular saws. Coarse coolant will minimize frictional heating threads. the hole size needs Band sawing. SAWING • Control the feed speed carefully to The tap flutes should be finish ground While molded parts seldom require prevent binding or gumming. to the overall diameter. such as National Coarse (NC). tapping is not recom. but because of generous set to reduce friction and they provide greater thread depth relative its brittle nature. All rigid Bayer • Choose band-saw blades with a tend to work better in plastics because plastics can be tapped. full thread. keep the feed rate slow and the pressure light with the part held firmly. This improves mended for Lustran SAN. Some fabricated prototype for plastic recovery and subsequent parts or molded designs using extruded- reduction in the diameter of the tapped sheet components may also need to be hole. Choose blades with generous set to minimize friction. and and highly polished to reduce friction sawing. to be somewhat oversize to compensate openings. The amount of recovery will sawed. heat buildup. cating action of a jigsaw makes it difficult to control cooling. Chapter 5 MACHINING AND FINISHING continued holes. the thread strength. are fewer threads per inch. Coarse threads also • Cool the cut junction area with air or make chip removal easier because there a water mist. The cutting flutes might need sawed regularly to trim edges and form • Use saw guides whenever possible. and pressure. the preferred method for thermoformed holes. TAPPING tap or employ the three-tap system as used with metals. to be slightly larger for plastics than for plastics. Most Bayer plastics have been successfully cut with standard jig saw blades operating at 875 cycles per minute. This helps to prevent break- age and peeling of the threads. and thread distortion. • Use buttress or skip-tooth blades for Tapping adds screw threads to drilled about 50 feet per minute. and use of a wall sections greater than 1/8 inch. As in drilling. use a tapered tap before a bottom thin parts. Low spindle speeds. The hole size for tapped plastic shapes in addition to straight lines. For blind • Use precision or standard blades for holes. or molded holes in plastic parts. as well as enlarges drilled or For a given tap size. can cut contoured or irregular reaming requires sharp cutting edges metals. 99 . The recipro- properties of the material. thermoformed plastic parts are and heat. If you must use a jig saw.

000 about 50% more teeth per inch than listed Standard in the table and about 2/3 of the listed 1/8 . Fine (in) Type (teeth/in) (ft/min) cuts in Makrolon PC generally require < 1/8 Precision or 8 – 12 2. A four-inch blade for thin sheet removing ring or diaphragm gates. process: continuous or intermittent. “clicker” or dinking machine. Possible When planning to punch. BLANKING. die cutting. non-circular cut-outs. thickness reduce the optimum pitch applications for molded parts include or blank thermoplastics. thicker than 1/4 inch. Steel-rule dies trim lighter-gauge • Avoid sharp radii in the corners of parts. be an economical alternative. thermoplastics. Dies usually have a backup surface made of end-grain wood or hard rubber. die cut. if your part has varying • For best results.005 inch for most applications. Clicker dies perform heavier. consider the value. The pitch can increase Additionally. consider warming to about six to eight teeth per inch for hole positions that require many differ.1/4 Buttress or 5–6 1. 100 . Durethan PA6 resins > 1/4 Buttress or 3–4 1. Part Band Bayblend PC/ABS. or blank- between the punch and die of about ing parts made of filled materials. System selection will plastics should be hollow ground with depend on the thickness and quality slots provided for blade expansion and Although common in thermoforming of the cut desired and on the type of cooling. The dies are mounted on either a kick press.Table 5-3 lists suggested band saw Table 5-3 Band Saw Conditions speeds and configurations for most Bayer plastics including Lustran ABS. 0. clean cut and to avoid notches and from about 5. punching may using any of these techniques. Cutting speeds can vary lines and remove flash from parts. Circular saw blades for AND DIE CUTTING punch press. or a for straight cuts. steel-rule.500 Skip Tooth cutting speed. Circular sawing is usually used only PUNCHING.000 peripheral feet per scratches that could act as stress minute for polycarbonate to about The types of dies used with plastics concentrators. the plastic part to soften it when eight to ten inch blades used on sheet ent mold configurations. and clicker. For a clean cut. The required blade pitch for edge trimming and hole forming. Cadon SMA. depends on the diameter of the blade. and following: should have eight to ten teeth per inch trimming lengths to custom sizes. As a general rule. and Triax PA/ABS. Blanking use the highest pitch value that gives the dies are used on occasion to trim parting • Maintain sharp cutting edges for desired results. punching and die cutting are used rarely Larger blade size and greater plastic on finished molded parts. double that rate for most other Bayer include punch. for most plastics. and gauge cuts and continuous cuts in sheet. Thickness Tooth Pitch Speed Centrex ASA. maintain a clearance • Avoid punching.000 cut well with 25% more teeth per inch Skip Tooth and cutting speeds about 50% faster than listed.

causing later problems. or water-soluble Mounted in a drill press. these techniques should not be glass-filled materials. Check with your thickness.005 800 – 1. Because of its lack of for all types of rigid plastics. Exercise care when turning thermoplastics to pre- Used to remove large volumes of • Insufficient feed rates can generate vent vibration or chatter. when milling plastics: TURNING AND BORING • Excessive feed rates can cause Turning is often used to manufacture MILLING rough surfaces. rake angle give good results for most plastics. and prevent buildup. Consider the following or thin sheet. Makrolon PC designed specifically for plastics the supported work to 260 – 270°F for and Bayblend PC/ABS resins exhibit produce the smoothest finishes at 1/2 hour for each 0. Table 5-4 End Milling 1/4 0. Special cutters machining stresses. vibration and crazing. and die cutting Carbide cutters generally provide ate. Additionally. prevent friction and overheating.003 250 – 500 lists a generic range of conditions when 1/16 0. an end mill • Improper milling can induce high coolants to remove heat and prevent can plunge repeatedly to a preset depth stress levels.000 between 100 and 200 sfm. and • Use air. smooth final trims of fixtured parts.015 600 – 800 inches/min and cutting speeds of 1/16 0. which can stress crack and craze work best on ductile materials with smoother finishes and higher feed rates long after milling. water mist. only be considered for these processes cutter supplier for the latest designs in thin sections such as gates. especially milled polycarbonate parts to relieve the ductility. prototype fabrication or as a secondary • Support the material rigidly either operation for trimming parting lines. • Water mists help to remove heat by chucking closely on short parts glue joints. 101 . or gate excess. Use them on or by using supporting tools for molders often use end mills to trim all but the very shortest of milling longer parts. milling finds applications in distortion. Always keep mills extremely sharp and well polished to reduce friction. for plastics. When turning plastic with relatively high accuracy and too much heat and cause part melting. blanking. Additionally. Do this by heating used with Lustran SAN. round shapes from bar stock. High-speed end mills Proper milling techniques are particularly • Keep the cutting edge sharp to with four cutting flutes and a 15-degree important for parts made of polycarbon. Depth of Feed Speed Milling in Makrolon PC typically Cut (in) (in/tooth) (ft/min) works best at feed speeds of 5 – 10 Face Milling 1/8 0. Chapter 5 MACHINING AND FINISHING continued Punching. Consider annealing limited toughness. films.2 inch of part high levels of toughness and should the fastest feed rates. operations. or poor surface quality. sprue gates. parts can follow guides to side mills or reamers for accurate trimming of thick edge gates or Table 5-4 Milling Conditions tab gates.002 300 – 600 using a steel tool to mill most other types of Bayer plastics. and to produce flush. consider the following: precision. plastics.

high intensity beam.Proper. Holes formed this region — directs a finely focused. When turning Makrolon PC. a laser — usually a carbon. high. The • 0 to 5 degree positive rake angle for process.002-inch to 0. set the cutting edge 1 to 2 degrees above the center of the work PC Cutting Tool Figure 5-3 rather than in the direct center.2 inch of part thickness. • Front clearance angle of 10 to 15 plastic leaving a smooth cut with little degrees to prevent contact of the part heat buildup in the adjacent surfaces.003 – 0. Because the focused laser beam is To minimize the tendency of the work to climb.050-inch diameter. typically about 3 degrees. stress-relieve the Cutting Tool part prior to use.012-in Depth of Cut Makrolon PC usually have a 5 – 25° rake angle. quickly vaporizes the along the edge. dioxide type operating in the infrared and type of material. • Nose radius of 1/16 – 3/16 inch. Table 5-5 shows the standard turning conditions for a variety of Bayer materials. either pulsed or Cut features can also have a slight bead continuous. are “cut” by moving the part in a circular or sealing most thermoplastics. the process pro- • Side clearance angle of 10 to 15 from 0. Larger holes have the following: non-contact method for drilling. low-stress turning removes LASER MACHINING slightly cone-shaped. way are clean but with a slight taper • 5 to 25 degree rake angle for energy beam at the plastic surface. associated with most machining methods. The along the edge. Laser machining can cut or drill areas and tool heel. Do this by heating the Rake Angle supported work to 260 – 270°F for 1/2 5 – 25° hour for each 0. cutting rate depends on the thickness most Bayer plastics to reduce friction. Makrolon PC (see figure 5-3). lasers tend to material in a continuous ribbon. that are inaccessible by traditional Pulsed beams can quickly bore holes methods. Chip Makrolon Part Cutting tools for 0. In addition. duces holes and cuts that are essentially degrees to reduce friction. To produce cone-shaped holes unless achieve this the cutting tool should The laser machining process provides a corrective lenses are used. and Dwell time and beam intensity determine free of the notches and residual stresses the depth of penetration into the hole. In this pattern through a continuous beam. 102 . cutting.

and gate marks. 103 . trim gate excess. and imperfections in most • Satin Finishing — for a satin or used frequently to smooth edges on parts made of rigid plastics. • Cut-Down Buffing — for a smooth calls for filing. a liquid — usually water — alleviates frictional heat and removes sanding debris. When wet sanding. scratches.015 200 – 250 faces. internal features and assemblies. and • Do not file parts made of unfilled requires provisions for dust collection nylon and/or elastomeric TPU. flash. 1/8 0. Apec 1/8 0. Although wet 1/32 0. and coarse-grit paper. Buffing can involve different A relatively quick and controllable Use a conventional belt or disc sander types of finishing operations including: method for removing significant to remove gate excess. you and remove flash.005 75 – 100 from coarse to very fine.012 300 – 350 Makrolon 1/16 0. removal on parts made of ABS and difficulties when sanding thermoplas- other medium-hard plastics. • Use files with relatively coarse teeth • Cut-and-Color Buffing — for a and a suitable rake for efficient chip Frictional heating.006 350 – 400 Bayblend Durethan 1/32 0. so dry sanding must clogging under high pressure for usually be done at slow speeds with parts made of polycarbonate. mold amounts of unwanted plastic. • Use single-hatched files that resist in most plastics. Heat dissipates slowly gloss. Dry sanding produces quick results and rough finishes. can melt plastic surfaces and clog • Final Color Buffing — for a high sanding media.001 150 – 200 sanding can produce very smooth sur- Lustran ABS 1/8 0.010 250 – 300 Triax an additional buffing step to achieve a Centrex 1/32 0. and/or removal. tics. thermoformed parts. as well as to remove surface imperfections. you can use a wider range of grit sizes. mirror-like finish. or assembly. FILING SANDING sanding marks.003 100 – 150 upon the requirements.003 400 – 500 POLISHING AND BUFFING Use polishing and buffing to create uniform high-gloss or satin finishes. To inspect brushed finish. plastic parts will generally need Cadon 1/16 0. the primary source of lustrous finish. Chapter 5 MACHINING AND FINISHING continued Table 5-5 Turning Conditions In wet sanding. reducing the Depth of Feed Speed Material Cut (in) (in/rev) (ft/min) chance of gumming. depending Lustran SAN 1/16 0. address the following: although sanding will destroy the part finish. filing is marks.005 300 – 350 glossy finish. If your part design can sand parts for cross-sectional views.

ing produces a high-gloss finish in most pers. sive media such as crushed cocoa bean alternately with two layers of 5-inch shells. flannel. hand. tumbling usually Final wheels have two layers of 12-inch flash on some parts must be totally does not work well with Bayer thermo- and four layers of 5-inch unbleached removed. increases gloss. While expensive.Satin finishing. Most of the machining and finishing methods described in this chapter are used to remove flash from molded 104 . repair- finishing wheel made of a soft material. A variety intermediate. Many times. your overall costs. removal operations. so they are not visible in the final this method may prove economical. or ashing. cutters. application pressure and cooling liquids gate size. try to position gates your part has difficult-to-remove flash. materials tends to bend or flatten flash wheels mount to conventional buffing air remelting and vapor honing. brings the luster to an ing methods discussed earlier in this without digging into the part. These flash by tumbling parts together in a Wheels for cut-and-color buffing often techniques and equipment are discussed special rotating drum with a mild abra- consist of unbleached cotton discs laid in this section. as well as Bayer materials. such as a valve gate. molders have a wide variety of of scraper shapes and sizes are available final color buffing. plastic parts. Light cessing requirements dictate appropriate cost savings. Two common techniques plastic materials.000 rpm. parts sequence of steps that may vary from vapor to dissolve the surface. Commonly used to remove flash discs and two layers of 12-inch discs. are exposed to a flash detonation that process usually starts with unbleached instantaneously melts flash. knife-edged scrapers with a cotton or muslin wheel and buff. hot-air method uses a heat stream from abrasion. a hot-air gun to remelt and smooth the Buffing to a high gloss requires a area. Cut-and-color buff. FINISHING. For ABS.and pneumatically operated nip. After buffing with an assembly or choose a less-noticeable appropriate polishing compound — gate. Cut-down buffing. Vapor honing uses a chemical In one new and novel approach. followed by a wiping or coloring step. tumbling. resulting placed in a specially designed chamber material to material. In addition to the machining and finish. or felt. mation on gate size and placement.500 to 3. Another more common major irregularities on the surface and AND FLASH REMOVAL method. if preparation. smooth finish ready for chapter. removes TRIMMING. some remelting and honing techniques Another method. and scrapers. that remove flash as a continuous filament ing compound. The rather than remove it by breaking or equipment and spin at 1. gate marks and from rigid thermosets. Do not rely Always compare the cost of reworking such as rouge or greasy tripoli — the on unrealistically small gates to hide or the mold to the cost of secondary flash- part receives a final polishing on a clean lessen the appearance of the gate mark. commercially. scraping or trimming uses leaves a satin finish. Part geometry. Tumbling in these cotton discs laid alternately. removes to remove gate excess and flash. The buffing to remove these blemishes are hot. molding resin. For aesthetic reasons. specially designed. without cotton buffing discs for cleaning and Because both of these processes add to damaging the part. Please refer to the mold help prevent heat buildup and resulting design chapter in this manual for infor- surface damage. ing the mold could result in long-term such as muslin. A cutting or polishing step. the in a similar effect. and pro.

attack from cleaning solvents. common oils. discussed in this chapter. the injection-molding or coating thermoplastic parts is to components: a polymeric resin or resin process accommodates a diversity of enhance aesthetics and provide uniform components that form the coating. such as electrically conductive paints The common types of paints used on Painting. glossy finishes. Chapter 6 PAINTING. acrylic. and vinyl. and additives to specific instances where painting or some molding defects. and appearance. and decorating. or during manufacture. durable finish. plastics include polyurethane. and other substances encountered in-use • Epoxies typically produce hard. are alkyd. plating. paint prevents many colored heat. as for EMI/RFI shielding. graphics or labeling in contrasting colors. Paints and coatings can also protect the plastic substrate from chemicals. lubricants. In different chemistries and polymer types. epoxy. or adding addition. shielding electronic as certain metallic or stippled effects. cure without instance. scratch- coatings and treatments for Bayer resistant finishes that resist most thermoplastic resins. A variety final assemblies from harsh chemicals surface effects that resins cannot. and produced in a rainbow of colors. AND DECORATING While some plastic parts require painting. plating may be needed include: protecting or foam swirl. scratch-resistant coatings commonly provide abrasion resistance for lenses • Vinyls tend to produce soft. PLATING. such as gate blush enhance or modify application. finishes. color and texture to assemblies made pigments or dyes for color. amorphous plastics. Commercial tough. For flexible. and are compatible with most plastics from fading and becoming brittle plastics. or environmental attack. some paints perform a function. such of paints have been developed based on or UV degradation. well as their design considerations. most do not for The most common reason for painting Paints are generally made up of four two reasons: first. • Polyurethane paints provide a abrasion. such UV radiation from sunlight or artificial as polycarbonate and polycarbonate lighting. Paints and coatings can hide uniform coverage. delivery. thermoplastic resins can be of different materials or by different or carrier for thinning. including many chemically when exposed to the elements and/or sensitive. a solvent second. PAINTING Types of Paints plating. Some processes. They also offer colors or adhesion. Contact your Bayer sales representative for the latest information on scratch • Acrylic paints give brittle. high-quality surface finishes and textures. Coatings can also prevent blends. 105 . and/or decorating for aesthetic or functional concerns. rubbery made of Makrolon polycarbonate. devices from EMI radiation.

Always test your solvent only minutes. limit the stresses. for good adhesion. emission limits without elaborate and less aggressive to plastic parts but tend expensive environmental-protection to form slightly weaker bonds. waterborne coat- increasingly important advantage. tions. Acetal. and polyethylene. Amorphous plastics. limit your choice of plastics on which and paint system. The cost of the Organic solvents penetrate the plastic ature. To are less chemically resistant. The curing bonate and polycarbonate blends.Several factors determine the type of Paint Curing have waxy surfaces. are chemically paint systems you choose. polycarbonate resins. available painting facili. and safety issues Semicrystalline plastics. consult both your solvent systems or water-based systems. Many organic- determine its suitability. such as finish required. including the resistant to most solvent systems as specific plastic substrate. many solvent • Two-component paint systems use consider the cost of the entire process systems severely damage parts made of a chemical reaction to drive the curing when making your selection. but it should not to polymerize on the part surface. These systems generally chemical attack tend to be worse in give off very few volatiles. finished part to (VOCs) into the air. these paints can be used. • Other paints rely upon exposure solvent-based paint systems and to oxygen or UV radiation to application systems cannot meet current Water-based systems are generally completely cure. the paint system should • Air-curing paints solidify as the good adhesion with many more paint chemically react with the plastic surface solvent evaporates. achieve some degree. but have Government regulatory agencies. which 106 . such as nylons. Damage and process. Look for a system that is not too chemi- • Heat-curing systems bake parts for cally aggressive: especially for polycar- Paint systems also differ in the types of rapid and complete curing. Polycarbonate parts can usually paint is usually insignificant compared substrate to form strong chemical bonds withstand paint bake temperatures of to the labor and overhead costs. damage the plastic substrate. To solvent system used. paints: polycarbonate or ABS. special pretreatments or primers. Excessively about 120°C (250°F). and the for superior adhesion. areas of high molding or assembly a short pot life after mixing: often especially OSHA and EPA. emission of volatile organic compounds system on an actual. health. Generally. Parts must resin and paint suppliers before making withstand the required curing temper. leaving the resin systems. Paint-Selection Considerations ings and high-solid polyurethane systems water-based systems avoid most of the comply with most government regula- environmental. Solvent systems temperature for these paints may achieve the optimum match of substrate generally fall into two types: organic. and local regulatory restrictions. An equipment. the type of There are a variety of methods to cure well. Check the current and near-future associated with organic-solvent systems. your final selection. tend to be chemically resistant to most regulations in your area. because they ties. Be sure to substrate. polypropylene. because these solvent systems and often require regulations vary. cost of complying with environmental aggressive solvents may damage the protection regulations. For example.

In can adequately level. or in some instances.008-inch deep grooves in the mold coalesce on the surface of the part and • The composition and morphology of steel on the back surface. weather. For leveling flow front in the problem areas. two painting To minimize these problems. can be conventional. • In electrostatic systems. An aggressive venting. The to occur properly. PLATING. Changes in temperature or High surface stresses tend to occur near humidity can change the volatility of gates. This condition is called problem. AND DECORATING continued Spray Painting Electrostatic Spraying Figure 6-1 Spraying. large areas of addition. the high degree of surface orientation at • High molded-in surface stresses on gates and abrupt geometry changes that The spraying process breaks the paint the molded part. good the paint system and affect the time for uniform wall thickness. consider adding or coating into tiny droplets that must 0. To reduce overspray (see figure 6-1). Chapter 6 PAINTING. dry days tend to cause the solvent can cause small cracks in these placement also tend to reduce surface solvent to evaporate before the paint areas that can lead to dullness known as stresses and paint soak problems. Electrostatic systems defects unique to molded plastic parts. must be designed and processed to improve coverage and reduce are both affected by: minimize surface stresses. the solvent and paint • The particular paint solvent system groove-to-groove (or ridge-to-ridge in formula may need to be adjusted to used in the formulation. electrostatic. 107 . Hot. the most common painting Conventional Electrostatic method for plastics. the surface can become rough and solvents and paint systems for a given appear as if the paint has soaked into polymer to reduce the surface attack the plastic. and proper gate design and leveling. In severe cases. Part Part (+) Robotics can automate the spraying process and improve painting consistency. the part) spacing should be no greater compensate for daily variations in than the part wall thickness. and grooves perpendicular to the advancing in an action called leveling. can lead to paint soak. and in areas of non. Electrostatic spraying improves coverage and reduces overspray by attracting paint droplets to the part surface. paint soak. • In conventional spray painting. at knit lines. leading to a defect crazing. Orient the blend together to form a smooth surface the polymer. Gun Gun (–) • In airless systems. paint is forced through a spray nozzle at high velocity. airless. compressed air atomizes and delivers tiny droplets of paint onto the part surface. High mold and melt temperatures. opposite electrical charges applied to the paint and part attract paint droplets to the Crazing and paint soak. the parts part surface. paint manufacturers can tailor known as dry spray.

parts through subsequent stages for dripping. dipping is used such as fillet radii and rounded or less often than spraying. usually ten to thirty minutes. often more complicated and labor-inten- felt roller (see figure 6-2). receive overspray. draining. Each has advantages in specific kinds of applications. uses a conveying sys. Some con- roller is commonly used in production paint in the inlays. high viscosity paint Part drawings should clearly specify the film of paint and then onto the plastic is first applied to coat the inlay features areas to receive paint. Pad painting uses a patterned resilient The roller transfers paint to the raised features on the molded part. In this method. The paint viscosity must Dipping.Other Painting Methods Figure 6-2 Roller Painting In addition to spraying. areas which must part being decorated. pad to transfer paint to the plastic substrate much like a rubber ink stamp applies ink to paper. Brushing is most commonly used in automated stripe-painting applications. Because • Avoid vaguely defined transitions few applications require complete paint between masked and painted features coverage on all surfaces. siderations to address with masking to maintain a uniform film thickness on include: the paint roller. a simple and inexpensive be high enough to prevent running. and dipping. other common methods of paint application include brushing. The patterned pad such as dial numerals and indented let- with raised figures is first pressed onto ters. Programmable machines manipulate the brush position and vary the application pressure to adjust the stripe pattern and width. wiping. rolling. and surrounding area. and areas that can of time. Paint-free areas will Rolling applies paint to raised surfaces the excess paint is wiped from the probably require masking: a procedure on a plastic part by means of a rubber or surrounding areas with a solvent. Dipping is irregular surfaces. and drying. In an automated process. painting method. commonly used to apply base coats to parts prior to vacuum metallizing or sputtering. pad painting. A transfer impregnated rag or brush. a roller applies a film of paint Wiping applies paint to molded inlays Masking to a transfer plate. • Take steps in the part design stage to tem to first submerse parts in a tank of avoid masking or at least simplify the paint and thinner. After a period be free from paints. and then move the masking process. leaving sive than the actual painting. 108 .

and process. to the tight tolerances. so they can be ejected without process. Under the heat such as two-part urethanes. Buildup on the masks ed plastic parts. there is no need for an expensive work and expense. However. The transfer film is then removed and discarded. powder masked areas and the part edge. Cracks in the paint or plastic surface during molding. avoid undercuts and deep. this process does cult to coat sufficiently and may chip or add cost and complexity to automate the To prevent leakage between the stencil or wear through. In all application methods. painting process at the mold. Consider painting trans. tend to and pressure of molding. using external mold release sprays. Sharp corners can be diffi. Because painting takes place in the masking experts to avoid unnecessary narrow recesses. Chapter 6 PAINTING. When possible. Some methods also offer options not feasible in conventional painting. parts should IN-MOLD DECORATING be clean and free of surface contamination In-mold transfer decoration offers for good paint adhesion. works within a short nozzle-to. Flexible paint systems. the mask and parent parts on the back surface (or sec. In-mold transfer decoration involves shot variations in size or shape. either as a separate sheet held by ing production to clean masks. For is sprayed onto the mold surface before instance. PLATING. The Brittle coatings and paints can greatly transferring graphics from a preprinted masks and stencils must also be held to reduce the impact performance of paint. To achieve uniform part surface as the part solidifies. transfers from the film to the molded Considerations for Painting part. a line-of-sight the thermoplastic resin is injected. It also can mask and the plastic part. paint line. • Work closely with your painting and coverage. can lower your decorating most traditional decorating methods. ed part. paint selection for painted parts subjected indexed roll that positions the graphics to impact loads. costs. This section discusses two common in-mold decorating methods. In-mold decorating methods tend Oils from hands can also contaminate to reduce or eliminate VOC emissions. Consider designing and eliminate many of the problems designated handling areas or features associated with other decorating methods to reduce contamination in critical such as solvent/substrate compatibility painting areas. heat-curing restrictions. such as applying multicolor graphics and patterns. try to have Exercise extra care in the design and electrostatic charge or as part of an several masks for each masking job. completely. paint then melts and bonds to the plastic- part distance range. The • Avoid thin or intricate masking. spray painting. The and stencils must be periodically cleaned coating act as stress concentrators to decorated film is placed into the mold to maintain a good fit. which may not coat mold. over the cavity surface. Applying decorations during molding. on the ease and cost of painting. For this to happen. ond surface) to protect the paint from problems at the molding press. generate considerable housekeeping stencils must fit tightly against the mold. multiple colors in a single operation as design parts to release from the mold instead of as a secondary post-mold well as greater design freedom than easily. the part surface. carrier. To avoid interrupt. problems. the parts must scratches and abrasion. AND DECORATING continued • Allow at least 1/8 inch between Part design can have a direct impact In the powdered-paint method. and painting line costs. be molded to tolerance without shot-to. the decoration Other Design perform better in impact applications. typically polyester film. initiate fracture in the plastic substrate. 109 .

chemical attack. Wrinkles and indexing problems can arise on large parts or in parts with complex or deeply contoured geometries. During molding. Figures 6-3 and 6-4 show a decorated film in place in the mold in preparation for molding and the final This film-insert-molded control panel has a decorative matte finish with backlit figures mold part. 110 . plastic injects behind the film forming a molded part with an integral film layer. SAN. The process has several notable limita- tions. in-mold transfer decoration may not be suitable for many applications. Figure 6-4 Film-Insert Molding FILM-INSERT MOLDING Film-insert molding differs from conventional in-mold decoration in that the decorated film.Manufacturers can also quickly change Figure 6-3 Film-Insert Molding designs by simply switching the printed films. The decorated. This process has been used with many Bayer resin types including ABS. becomes an integral part of the molded product during the molding process. by means of vacuum or high-pressure forming. and UV degradation. formed film is positioned in the mold and then backfilled with transparent polycarbonate. either flat or formed. For these reasons. printed film. and certain PC grades. The formed film is then cut and placed into the mold. into the exact shape required to fit tightly into the mold. it is vulnerable to abrasion. Also. because the decoration is on the part outer surface (first surface). Typically the process begins by forming a pre-heated. and symbols.

or reflective surfaces for ABS also plate well and can provide the gate area. The processes for reasonably tough finishes. Bayer developed insert mold decoration Decorative metallic coatings enable plastic parts to function as economical. Certain molding. Special plating grades of film substrate. This can lead to distortion of can provide electromagnetic shielding. Although many polymers parts for decoration or for a variety of can be electroplated. Chapter 6 PAINTING. the part. lightweight alternatives applications. • Multi-color graphics in a single step. Figure 6-5 Metallic Coatings Film insert decorating advantages include: • Design freedom to decorate compound curves and complex geometries. Contact your metallizing. provide various levels of protection high-quality finish for a variety of against chemicals and wear. a lighting applications. are discussed in the following sections. To protect the graphics. and • Reduced decorating costs. on the outer surface. PLATING. electroless plating. AND DECORATING continued The process incorporates a variety opment and refinement of this important troplating. and sputter coating. and protects the printed graphic Electroplating from the direct contact with the molten plastic. In first-surface film decorating technology. second-surface film functional reasons. second film can be bonded to the printed applying metallic coatings include elec- surface using a heat-activated adhesive. • Options for both opaque and transparent graphics. Decorative metallic families obtain the adhesion and appear- decorating places the printed graphic coatings enable plastic parts to function ance required by high-performance on the inner surface of a transparent as economical. Functional coatings and appliance applications. These decorating. This process works particularly well with backlit parts. only a few polymer Single-layer. the print design is printed Bayer sales representative for more infor. • Long-lasting finishes. Metallic coatings are applied to plastic applications. lightweight alternatives to metal. vacuum of film options. This configuration protects to metals in applications such as Lustran ABS meet the performance the graphic from the environment but automotive grilles and trim hardware requirements of many tough automotive places it toward the molten plastic during (see figure 6-5). Protective graphic hard coats METALLIC COATINGS Electroplating can provide a durable. in the 1980s and is a leader in the devel- 111 . This places the mation and assistance regarding potential film substrate between the printing and film insert molding applications. Triax and Bayblend blends containing the printed graphic at hot spots such as circuit paths.

high current Better density at edges. Electroless plating provides EMI shielding for electrical housings. notches. a metallic film layer. Recessed areas plate at lower current densities and tend to plate much thinner than other areas. and outside corners can lead to excessive plating buildup (see figure 6-7). the non-conductive Figure 6-6 Electroless Plating plastic surface of most plastics must first undergo an electroless chemical process to deposit a conductive metallic film layer. is chemically deposited on the part. The electroless process usually involves immersing the parts in a series of specially formulated. After this treatment. aqueous baths and rinses to clean. etch. Many electrical-shielding applications skip the electroless step and apply only an electroless plating layer to the inside surface of the housing or device (see figure 6-6). A common plating combination is nickel over copper. more conventional metal-plating methods apply additional metal layers to the now- conductive surface. Figure 6-7 Plating Buildup Design Considerations for Electroplating Better The electroplating process places spe- cial requirements on the plastic part design. and activate the part surface. To minimize these problems consider Round corners and edges to prevent excessive plating buildup. Then. the following: 112 . such as copper.Prior to electroplating. Because electric current density distribution over the part surfaces deter- mines plating thickness.

Plan for these contact points and work with your plater to find suitable clamp locations. or normally processed at high mold and • Designing and maintaining mold and hinder rinsing afterwards. Otherwise. could appear worse after plating. • Include a 1/16-inch minimum radius on all outside corners. mance. Surface crowning stiffens the surface and promotes uniform plating thickness. High molded-in stresses on the part ejection without mold-release part surface can reduce adhesion and agents. blistering. The points where the rack clamps con. molding resins for plating are during immersion in the baths. molded parts mounted Not Stiff Better Better on specially designed plating racks pass on conveyors through the various baths Stiffen edges to prevent damage to plating during racking and handling. These racks both secure and orient the parts for total immersion and complete draining at each step.010 inch to Edge Stiffening Figure 6-8 all plated edges. the part on the rack without flexing it. 113 . PLATING. Consider edge-stiffening 0. tact the part will not plate. melt temperatures and slow filling parting lines carefully to prevent speeds. and rinses. During plating. Other molding considerations include: • Positioning gates out-of-sight and trimming gates cleanly. Proper drying also prevents sharp or ragged edges that could be • Design clamping points that secure moisture-related surface defects that exaggerated by the plating process. To minimize surface prevent oil contamination.015 in/in and surface-crowning to reduce flexure Better crown and cracking (see figures 6-8 and 6-9). • Applying a light satin-finish to the The molding process directly affects mold cavity surfaces to enhance plating adhesion and end-use perfor. Other design considerations include: lead to cracking. • Avoid extreme recesses that could lead to inadequate plating thickness. especially silicone. Chapter 6 PAINTING. and Molding Considerations for Electroplating • Assuring that molded part surfaces are free of oils and contaminates. Your Surface Crowning Figure 6-9 part must be stiff enough to resist flexure and distortion when clamped onto the Flat Crowned rack. AND DECORATING continued • Add a radius of at least 0. and warping • Using self-lubricating ejector pins to in the plated part. the thin-plated layer could crack as the parts are removed and handled. • Designing parts and molds to facilitate plating adhesion on the molded part. • Avoid features that may trap air stresses.

decorative parts usually tends to provide better adhesion and deposits an extremely thin metallic film receive a clear topcoat to protect the abrasion performance than conventional (typically 1. Sputtering also The vacuum metallizing process allization. The process thin metal film from abrasion. copper. and then Sputter deposition offers thicker metal- plating application. than heat. usually aluminum. Vacuum Metallization Figure 6-10 Vacuum metallization applies the reflective coating in many lighting applications. Metallized flow marks tend to become exaggerated usually begins with the application of a surfaces in protected environments. typically provide the energy to vaporize Common metals and alloys include Vacuum Metallization the source metal through direct sublima. condensing it onto the part surface. the coated parts move to special racks electroplating requires good communi. All phases of molding specially formulated base coat to as reflectors in sealed lighting applica- must be executed correctly to avoid smooth out surface irregularities and tions. Molding imperfections such as sink and parts in a vacuum chamber. and more metal choices than Tungsten filaments or electron beams traditional vacuum metallization.5 microns) onto plastic vacuum metallization. stainless steel. sputter deposition. After curing. that rotate within the vacuum chamber A related process. After met. gold. such after plating. tion from a solid to a vapor. cation and cooperation between the to provide the uniform coverage during uses mechanical displacement. the metal. chromium. chemical the line-of-sight deposition process. rather molder. 114 . (see figure 6-10). and brass. and plater. Consult your Bayer An inert gas plasma impacts the metal representative for assistance in selecting Deposition takes place by vaporizing to provide the energy for phase transition. lic layers. most other manufacturing processes. the proper resin grades for your electro. More so than with improve metal adhesion. can often skip the topcoat step problems in plating. material supplier. to vaporize the coating metal. tungsten. supplier.

and an additional pass through covered in this chapter thus far — paint. intentional — holes and cooling vents standing features. Long gaps. Vendors that apply Interference (RFI) become increasingly conductive coatings to plastic parts used important design considerations. and environmental Interference (EMI) and Radio Frequency cycling conditions. and required shielding performance. adhesive foils. PLATING. parts submitted for recognition under standard UL 746 C must undergo testing of the adhesion between the shielding EMI/RFI Shielding material and the substrate. such as part geometry and size. plating. opening determines the frequency of require a second racking step to reorient Each of the metallic-coating processes radiation that can escape. Typically. such as between mating halves. electroplating. Adherence to standard guidance on your specific application. Electromagnetic temperature. UL test QMSS2 evaluates conductive coating With the proliferation of electronic and substrate combinations for acceptable devices such as cell phones and levels of adhesion after elevated portable computers. The length of the Complete front-and-back coverage may manufacturers use metallic coating. process chosen. Design Considerations for Vacuum Metallization Untreated plastic parts generally appear EMI/RFI Shielding “transparent” to electromagnetic energy. 115 . electroless release a wide range of frequencies. masking requirements. production lev- Vacuum metallizing is much less sensi. will also not coat. and vacuum For proper shielding. EMI in devices requiring UL 746 C recognition and RFI problems occur when electro. the part must enclosure assembly. tion. magnetic energy escapes an electrical Contact your Bayer representative for device and reaches an unintended device. tive to processing and part design than Contact your Bayer representative for electroplating. whether they be rotate for full coverage of surfaces and A variety of shielding methods exist. Because vacuum metallization processes requiring a secondary shielding process Enclosure design usually affects shield- deposit metal films in a line-of-sight or method when used in electronic ing performance more than the coating pattern. and special conductive ing edges. ing (conductive coatings). els. AND DECORATING continued Design Considerations for causing a malfunction or interference. More often. allization works best on parts with rela. on just one side. can allow electromagnetic despite being rotated. The process is often shielding. sheet-metal shrouds. Vacuum met. must meet the requirements of QMRX2. could the metallization process. the parts. plastic part design guidelines and good molding practices is usually sufficient All electronic devices with metallized to obtain satisfactory results. Areas “shadowed” by including coatings. radiation to escape. deep recesses and undercuts enclosures needing EMI/RFI shielding. these interfaces tively simple shapes that require coating metallization — find use in EMI/RFI require a generous overlap and snug fit. Chapter 6 PAINTING. — or unintentional — gaps along mat- other elements of the part geometry. information on UL-recognized vendor/ coating combinations for EMI/RFI shielding. A number of factors deter- limited to sizes that will fit in standard mine the best process for your applica- vacuum chambers. fillers in the molding resin. Any openings in the will not coat. humidity.

The screen-printing process can apply designs and markings to flat and cylindrical parts. pattern that must be compensated by Pad printing involves pressing ink onto adjustments in the inkpad pattern. Screens also require periodic cleaning to remove dried ink that could clog screen. Part inkpad picks up a film layer deposited used to decorate flat or cylindrical designers and shielding experts need onto a transfer plate by a roller. Irregular shielding experts for help in calculating plastic parts are discussed in this section. often made using a photoetching process. Generally. The screening process requires careful control of the ink viscosity and ambient conditions to avoid fluctuations in temperature and humidity that could cause the screen to stretch or shrink. 116 . A rubber squeegee forces ink through the screen and onto the part sur- face. the loaded inkpad then gap size. or of performance and manufacturability. Stencils. are then placed on the screen where ink transfer is not Screen Printing Figure 6-11 desired. and markings to parts made stamps the pattern onto the plastic part. In both low-impedance connection and reduced Printing is often used to apply designs. an inexpensive technique possible weak links in the shield. processes. The most The soft pad can accommodate textures quency that can escape. leaving ink in the with a slight interference fit to create a etched recesses of the pattern. polyester. a smooth pad picks up with an open-weave fabric or screen. that was flooded with ink and then stainless steel. which has been stretched in a frame. the slot length and the minimum fre.One design employs contact fingers PRINTING wiped with a blade. In plastic parts (see figure 6-11). Consult your common printing processes used on and many irregular shapes. In one process. The finger spacing determines characters. shapes cause distortions in the printed the correct spacing for your application. the patterned Screening. do not place “noisy” circuit the part from a custom-designed soft boards close to cooling vents and other inkpad. begins to work together early in the design another process. from Bayer thermoplastics. process to assure a good combination a pattern of ink from an etched plate commonly made of silk.

Chapter 6 PAINTING. special transfer papers that rest against colored parts (see figure 6-12). AND DECORATING continued Laser Printing Figure 6-12 Laser printing can produce light or dark markings on plastic parts. heat plastic. relies on deep ink marking of the plastic or by selective white plastic with an opaque dark paint. back-lit symbols can be produced commonly used on computer and symbols in plastic parts either by direct on a dark background by first coating calculator keys. This process usu- the part surface. Some white plastic reflects the laser beam the part surface. ally does not produce suitable results for back lighting. the ink oped that produce light-colored symbols vapors can penetrate 0. the laser shape of the symbol. The sublimation ink transfer process. Laser printing produces designs and White. The pigmented. In this process. white plastic substrate. 117 . penetration to produce abrasion-resistant evaporation of a coating applied to the The laser then vaporizes the paint in the printed symbols. and exposes the and pressure vaporize inks printed on usually burns dark symbols into light. material and ink system.008 inch into during laser printing. In direct laser printing. PLATING. Depending on the dark-colored plastics have been devel. without marking.

early involvement can prevent problems in transparent. letters. and demar. for hiding trimmed sprue gates. The reinforced sili. Their tion. cone rubber pad used in this process 118 . a heated stamp Your ink and printing-equipment sup. tations for numbers. or fer ink from the foil (see figure 6-13). raised features on the molded part. Self-adhering printed labels and decals cations. a variation of the hot. Hot Stamping Figure 6-13 Dome Printing Figure 6-14 Lowering Lowering Device Device Heated Die with Heated Silicone Raised Pattern Rubber Pad Colored Colored Foil Tape Foil Tape Raised Part Features Plastic Support Support Part Block Block In standard hot stamping. opaque. Available simultaneously melt a recess and trans. stamping process. a pattern on the heated die transfers color In dome printing. process. provide an easy means for applying presses against a color foil positioned pliers can offer assistance in selecting items such as logos. model identifica- on the part surface. of relying upon a self-adhering backing. later in the design and production embossed materials. Always pretest printing unlimited choice of shapes and colors. part surface. prints on top of raised processes on actual. production Opaque labels are particularly helpful features or patterns in the molded part assemblies. they offer an Dome printing. metallic. In this process. Instead (see figure 6-14). The force and heat the correct process for your part. a heated silicone rubber pad transfers color to the from the foil to the plastic part. Hot stamping provides a quick and compensates for minor deviations in the LABELS AND DECALS easy method for creating colored inden. and decorative graphics.

and processing conditions can lead to quite different part textures from photoetched cavities. and fabric — to textures such as leather and wood grains. avoid placing show scratches. to release the print from a carrier and the correct resin. Glossy fin. thermoplastic erosion) and photoetching processes rows of lines or fine checkered patterns resins can duplicate the surface appear. such as PC and ABS. TEXTURE sandblasting of the mold surface can especially with sharp-etched textures. leather. disguise plastic parts. Mold surface finishing is • Use spark-eroded textures to hide molded part. Consider any proposed adhesive system on actual ing imperfections. Consequently. Because of Electric discharge machine (spark • Consider profile textures. many food-contact and health. as they can cause noticeable easily. Carefully pretest and evaluate ishes are sensitive to mold and process. Labels and selection. offer greater control over the mold texture. somewhat coarser abrasive media can as they will lift more easily. careful mold-steel Photoetched mold finishes can be blasted attach it to the plastic part. imperfections. For ease of als. Likewise. produce uniform matte finishes of vary- Texture affects the look and feel of a ing degrees. such as their ease of molding. reproduce the sharp edges and porous care products require glossy finishes. and improve scratch resistance. (Mold Design) of this manual. cleaning.001 inch high-gloss to deep texture. Chapter 6 PAINTING. and as wood. and may readily the following when designing parts production parts. Spark-eroded mold-surface textures • Add extra draft when designing parts tend to be smoother and more rounded with textured surfaces to aid in part The thermoplastic molding process also than the sharp-edged textures produced ejection: typically one degree of accommodates surfaces ranging from by photoetching. expensive mold polishing. as well as our perception discussed in more detail in Chapter 7 weld lines and other molding of its quality. produce a brushed finish that doesn’t • Avoid abrupt changes in wall thick- show scratches and imperfections as ness. molding low-viscosity resins. Glass-bead blasting and light differences in the texture appearance. AND DECORATING continued heat-transfer labeling uses a heated platen Achieving high levels of gloss requires resistance than sharp textures. tend not to of texture depth. micro finishes of photoetched cavities. additional draft for every 0. the molding resin mold textures and draft. PLATING. Also. hide molding imperfections. to hide read-through from linear ance of many natural materials — such They also make possible patterned features such as ribs. The inherently smooth and rounded textures produced by spark erosion tend to exhibit better scratch 119 . See the mold and part design chapters as do low-viscosity resins such as in this manual for more information on nylon. High-viscosity materi. Mold finishing with with texture: decals and labels on irregular surfaces. parts from molds with similar textures may look different because one used photoetching and another spark erosion. Textures can reduce glare. and enhance scratch resistance when adhesion. with glass beads to reduce sharp edges decals occasionally have problems with and meticulous mold care.

120 .

This performance of the molded part. consists of two injection mold is a precision instrument centerline. and determines of two main parts: the cavity and core. reduced down time and scrap. provides At the most basic level. the most common design and construction of the mold. the surface texture. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN Key to the injection-molding process. line (see figure 7-1). bottom or mold configuration. In facilitating mold-cavity filling of the part. the mold also influences external surfaces. as the internal stress levels and end-use so that the part can be removed. or it can be stepped or angled mold halves that open along one parting yet must be rugged enough to withstand to accommodate irregular part features. The cavity forms the major reasonable adjustments in the parting and cooling. TYPES OF MOLDS The success of any molding job depends The parting line can lie in one plane heavily on the skills employed in the corresponding to a major geometric The two-plate mold. An feature such as the part top. The added expense for a well-engineered and constructed mold Figure 7-1 Two-Plate Mold can be repaid many times over in mold- ing efficiency. and improved part quality. A conventional two-plate mold with two cavities. molds consist hinder or prevent easy part removal. disengage the undercut prior to ejection. the core line require mechanisms in the mold to the molding cycle and efficiency as well and cavity separate as the mold opens. Typically. MOLD BASICS • Choose the parting-line location to the injection mold forms the molten minimize undercuts that would plastic into the desired shape. the dimensions of the finished molded The core forms the main internal surfaces Undercuts that cannot be avoided via article. mold separation occurs along the interface known as the parting line. Material can enter hundreds of thousands of high-pressure molding cycles. 121 .

gate. three-plate mold with cutaway view showing first stage of opening. pinpoint gates and separating the parts the small pinpoint gates required for from the cavity side of the mold. sequence. a plate strips the runner from the retaining pins. three-plate mold with cutaway view Schematic of a two-cavity. Next. Disadvantages include added main press controller. Finally. the mold separates at the runner plate to facilitate removal of the runner system. 122 . Figures 7-2A through 7-2C show inner surface areas away from the outer desired locations along the parting line. Typically. the mold cavity directly via a sprue The three-plate mold configuration Unlike conventional two-plate molds. showing second stage of opening. Also. or indirectly through a runner opens at two major locations instead of three-plate molds can gate directly into system that delivers the material to the one. The mold first opens at mold complexity and large runners that the primary parting line breaking the can generate excessive regrind. Figure 7-2A Three-Plate Mold Figure 7-2B Three-Plate Mold Schematic of a two-cavity. the mold-opening sequence for a typical edge of parts: an advantage for center- The movable mold half usually contains three-plate mold. a linkage gated parts such as cups or for large a part-ejection mechanism linked to a system between the three major mold parts that require multiple gates across hydraulic cylinder operated from the plates controls the mold-opening a surface. and parts and runner eject from the mold.

three-plate molds are sum of the clamp needed by each cavity not recommended for shear-sensitive plus the runner system. gate blemish. Because of the high shear rates cavities are oriented on a single parting generated in the tapered runner drops line and the required clamp force is the and pinpoint gates. so the resulting clamp force is the same as for just one parting line. multiple lems. multicavity molds. The injection forces exerted or flame retardants. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Three-Plate Mold Figure 7-2C Schematic of a two-cavity. In stack molds. Stack molds produce more parts per cycle than would otherwise be possible in a given size molding press. the stack mold. three-plate mold with cutaway view showing final opening phase and stripper plate in forward position. on the plate separating parting lines cancel. materials such as Cadon SMA and cavities lie on two or more stacked part- materials with shear-sensitive colorants ing lines. reduces the clamp force required by tion. high shear and lead to material degrada. 123 . Typically. clean automatic degating can generate Another configuration. and packing prob.

can be incorporated in the these areas. available for most molding needs. forward (eject) position. The physical properties a locating ring (see figure 7-3) and ejector plate (if not retracted already) of standard mold base steels may be provisions for a sprue bushing in the in preparation for the next cycle. the return pins retract the steel carefully. Cutting cavities The mold base comprises the majority Return pins connected to the ejector directly into the mold base can be the of the bulk of an injection mold. inadequate for heavy-wear areas or stationary or “A” half of the mold and critical steel-to-steel contact points. As the mold When doing so. complete cavity units. slots to affix the mold in the press. here meaning core and inserts made of appropriate materials in half. plate corners project from the mold face most economical approach for large parts Standard off-the-shelf mold bases are when the ejection mechanism is in the and/or parts with simple geometries. MOLD BASES AND CAVITIES Leader pins projecting from corners pieces into the mold base. inserted in that connect the press ejection mecha- nism to the ejector plate in the mold. Figure 7-3 Mold Components Locating Ring Sprue Bushing Clamp Plate Clamp Slot Cavity Core Cooling Guide Pin/ Channel Leader Pin Guide Pin Bushing Ejector Pin Return Pin Ejector Retainer Plate Ejector Plate Clamp Slot Support Pillar Components of a standard two-plate mold base with two cavities. Both halves come with clamp cavity sets. Use an ejector assembly in the moving “B” Mold cavities. select the mold base Typical mold bases are outfitted with closes. The mold three ways: they can be cut “B” half has holes to accommodate bars directly into the mold plates. or inserted as of the “A” half align the mold halves. 124 .

collapsible fabrication. assembling the cavities Minor part design changes can often types of mechanisms include side-action from pieces can simplify component eliminate problematic undercuts in the slides. accumulation problems with the cavity simple modifications enable the mold Side-action slides use cam pins or components. Example 2: Side Hole Draw Hole No Side Hole Requires Action Side Action Complex Tool Simple Tool Simple/complex part design for undercuts. Likewise. mold-base cavity assemblies include holes can give access to the underside The remainder of this section discusses high initial mold cost. jiggler pins. cores and unscrewing mechanisms. mold cooling. lifter rails. Some mold bases are designed to accept standard No Side cavity-insert units for rapid part change Side Action Action Draw Core while the mold is still in the molding Required Pin press. Because many cavity units are face-mounted in the mold base Figure 7-4 Undercut Alternatives for quick removal. These Additionally. through redesign require mechanisms in pieces for vulnerable components. optimizing Undercuts. For example. It also simplifies and speeds repairs for tend to increase mold complexity and worn or damaged cavity components. the mold to facilitate ejection. For more informa- lets you select different metals for the tion on design alternatives to avoid various cavity components. and potential tolerance undercuts (see figure 7-4). retract portions of the mold prior to Cavity units offer many of the same advantages found in mold-base cavity assemblies. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Assembling the cavity in the mold base MOLDING UNDERCUTS action mechanism. to form a hole in the sidewall with hydraulic (or pneumatic) cylinders to bypass steel rather than with a side. Some of the drawbacks of mold. These cavity units typically have Complex Simple independent cooling circuits and ejector Tool Tool mechanisms that automatically connect to the mold-base ejector system. in Chapter 2 of this manual. less-efficient of features that would otherwise be these options. straight ejection at the parting line. worn or damaged Example 1: Snap-Fit Undercut cavities are easily replaced. see the section on undercuts the mold’s durability and performance. adding through. Whenever feasible. redesign the part to avoid undercuts. part features that prevent undercuts. lead to higher mold construction and Undercut features that cannot be avoided especially if you maintain spare mold maintenance costs. 125 .

These lifters move with the part on an angle during mold opening or ejection until the lifter clears the under- cut in the part. Shallow undercuts can often be formed by spring-loaded lifters (see figure 7-6) or lifter rails attached to the ejector system. Typical spring-loaded lifter mechanism. 126 . A variation on this idea. Side-Action Slide Figure 7-5 Cam Pin Undercut Slide The cam pin retracts the slide during mold opening. Slides driven by hydraulic or pneumatic cylinders can activate at any time during the molding cycle. Lifter Figure 7-6 ejection. an advantage in applications requiring the slides to actuate prior to mold opening or closing. As the mold closes. Cam-pin-driven slides retract as the mold opens (see figure 7-5). the cam pins return the slides to their original position for the next injection cycle.

collapsible cores. Available in a variety of standard sizes from various mold-com- ponent suppliers. Collapsible cores are Standard-style rarely used for inside diameters less collapsible core pin than 0. The mold design should include provisions to lubricate the various mov- ing parts of the unscrewing mechanism. These complex cores are made in segments that collapse toward the center as they retract during mold opening (see figure 7-8). the “jiggler” pin (see figure 7-7). Features such as internal threads. in expanded and contracted position. or hydraulic cylinders. Investigate Angled surfaces slide the jiggler pin to clear the undercut during ejection. and unscrewing mechanisms add to the cost and complexity of the mold. slots. these specialty cores are typically modified to produce the desired undercut shape. including rack- and-pinion devices actuated by mold opening. cams. The number and complexity of individual core components limit the minimum size of collapsible cores. dim- ples. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Jiggler Pin Figure 7-7 Unscrewing mechanisms are common- ly used to produce internal threads.625 inch. or motor-driven gear and chain mecha- nisms. has Figure 7-8 Collapsible Core angled surfaces to guide the pin away from the undercut during ejection. as well as the mold maintenance cost. A variety of devices can drive the rotation of the threaded cores. or grooves on the inside of holes or caps may require collapsible cores. then return it to the molding position as the ejector system retracts. Slides. motors. 127 .

Clever part design can often eliminate troublesome undercuts. molds have ejector systems built into the moving “B” half. The ejection unit of the molding press acti- vates these systems. speed. particularly if they can be automated or performed within the cycle at the press. The 128 . This con- figuration facilitates direct injection onto the inside or back surface of cosmetic parts. ejector plate moves forward.options that avoid complex mold Figure 7-9 Ejector Pins and Blades mechanisms. such as knockout (KO) pins. KO sleeves. Rods linking the press-ejector mechanism to an ejector Ejector pins and ejector blades push the part off of the core as the plate in the mold enable the press con. Reverse- injection molds eject parts from the sta. These topics are discussed in this section. Some undercuts are most economically produced as secondary operations. Figure 7-10 Ejector Sleeves tionary side of the mold via independent ejection mechanisms operated by springs or hydraulic cylinders. Specialized ejection components. these inexpensive. PART EJECTION Typically. The common. Manufactured Cylindrical ejector sleeves provide maximum ejection contact area with high surface hardness and a tough along the edge of circular parts. or stripper plates. round knockout pin provides a simple and economical method for part ejection. project from the mold ejector plate to the part surface where they push the part out of the mold (see figures 7-9 through 7-11). off-the-shelf items resist wear and breakage. core. and length of the ejection stroke. The added complexity of reverse- injection molds adds to the mold cost. troller to control the timing.

more easily from molds with frosted Additionally. the face plate which forms the Ejector pins on angled surface must be keyed to prevent rotation and edge of the parts moves forward stripping the parts from the core. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Figure 7-11 Stripper Plate Figure 7-12 Angled Ejector Pin In molds with stripper-plate ejection. This ally require larger ejectors and greater oversized pins available for standard avoids using small-diameter KO pins ejector area than comparable parts with diameters. usually eject thin for standard round pins. Ejector blades. Draw polishing the mold steel in the but can be more difficult to fit and KO pins leave witness marks. and part temperature at ejector hole must be held to a tight edges can be stepped or positioned. operate can deflect or bend. prevent pin deflection (see figure 7-12). that could be exceptions to this rule.005-inch the molded part (see figure 7-9). or if the ejector area is too small. with a rectangular cross section. geometry. the edges of ribs or walls that are too contacts the part. If KO to eject. mold maker selects the desired diameter pins push on angled surfaces. KO pins that are more difficult to maintain and thicker walls. often require grooves to prevent sideways deflection of the ejector pin. objectionable on cosmetic surfaces. 129 . consider Many factors determine the amount of and shank length from the vast array of adding grooves to the part design to ejector area needed. they are used on indentations or rings where the pin ejection. small direction of ejection generally helps maintain. Typically. lying parallel to the mold face. To prevent damage tolerance to avoid flash. thin-walled parts gener- holes can be refitted with 0. so the time of ejection. including the part standard sizes and machines it to fit. Thermoplastic polyurethanes. material-release The fit of the ejector pin into the round KO pins extending to narrow walls and characteristics. mold finish. much the same as standard round pins. Worn ejector that only a portion of the pin contacts during ejection. they can read-through to finishes that limit plastic-to-metal KO pins usually extend to the surfaces the opposite surface if the part is difficult contact to peaks in the mold texture.

Parting-Line Vents Also. this difficulty TPU resins require at least two degrees develops in deeply cored. Air- Materials with internal mold release poppet valves relieve the vacuum and can reduce the required ejection force deliver pressurized air between the part and alleviate some ejection problems. adding a generous amount of problems. Air valve at the top of a core to relieve vacuum. closed-bottom of draft. Off-the-shelf mold components Chapter 2 for additional information. add support to the mold or core. If planning to use a spray As a first choice. vents in the features to ease part ejection. check it for chemical mold parting line. and keep clear of material. forms between the part and mold during Lustran SAN resins and Desmopan ejection. This section discusses vent design and placement. Spray mold releases. Air-Poppet Valve Figure 7-13 Core shift and mold flexure can pinch part surfaces. or change the filling pattern to balance the injection forces. place vents along the mold draft helps ejection. Typically easy to cut to the slight angle or taper added to part compatibility with your resin. and mold surface during ejection. Draft refers mold release. degree of draft for easy ejection. To prevent this problem. Typically. See the section on draft in parts. Most parting line provide a direct pathway for Bayer materials require at least one Ejection difficulties can arise if a vacuum air escaping the mold. Although some air escapes through the parting line or loose-fitting ejectors or slides. though often effective as a short-term fix. hindering ejection. such as air-poppet valves (see figure 7-13) can alleviate the problems. MOLD VENTING As molten plastic enters the mold. can lengthen the molding cycle and lead to cosmetic 130 . it quickly displaces air in the tightly Air Air sealed mold. most molds need strategically placed vents for rapid and complete air removal.

particularly the first 0. Triax.0015 in Semicrystalline Resins: Durethan. When the last filling speed. area to fill is not vented. Lustran. air may become Vent Depth Figure 7-14 Vent Placement Figure 7-15 0.0020 in Amorphous Resins: Makrolon. reduce the upper limits of the above ranges by 0.0005 – 0. To prevent material from flowing Product Information Bulletin for specific into the vent during filling. but they are especially Other rules of thumb for venting: surface and vents. and Centrex. typically less than 0. 0. These resins rely on needed at the last areas of the mold to pressurized air in front of the flow front fill (see figure 7-15). and materials. Cadon. Over. areas are located on the parting line and increases with part volume and venting can prevent the flow front lie farthest from the gate. from generating the required pressure.30 in Vent Channel ≥ 0. Apec.0010 – 0. the flow front and deposit on the mold part perimeter. 131 . Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Figure 7-14 shows standard parting-line • Add more vents or widen existing Add vents sparingly in molds for these vent guidelines for Bayer thermoplastic ones to increase venting. Carefully review Bayer’s resins.15 in Vent Land 0.0020 inch for amorphous resins and For the vast majority of resins and part less than 0.150 inch to 0. Texin. the depth of • To avoid flash. for flame-retarded materials. Your resin selection and processing exceptions are resins with components — conditions determine the vent’s maximum usually flame retardants or other addi. Typical Vent Depth “D” Range for Bayer Resins Extra vents were directed to corners opposite the gate that fills last.300 inch of vent depth beyond the guidelines. Note: For applications requiring minimal flash. more vents are better. Desmopan. do not increase vent venting recommendations.0005 in.04 in Gate Vent Depth “D” (See Below) Vent Parting-line vents were positioned along the perimeter of this cavity insert. and Pocan. Makroblend. The Vent Placement resins. Vents should be placed at various depth. length must be small. 0. Bayblend. Typically these • The amount of venting needed to hold volatiles in the material. The ranges given in figure 7-14 tives — that can boil to the surface at locations along the runner system and apply to typical molding conditions.0015 inch for semi-crystalline geometries.

Air. and direct air to parting-line vents. Overflow wells are mold inserts or splits in the mold. 132 .002 in Gate Weld Line Overflow Well Overflow wells can improve the strength and appearance of weld lines. You can often improve self clean with each ejection stroke. heated during compression and in severe cases can pit or erode the mold steel. and extra-deep vent channel. move gates or vary part require venting at the last area to fill.trapped in the mold. (see figure 2-21 in Chapter 2). ribs to prevent air entrapment burn on the part. The trapped air is super odic cleaning. Bosses can usual. Part features produced by blind holes in Air trapped in unvented pockets or the mold. ly vent along the core insert forming the trap areas persist. preventing complete inserts can also provide venting for diffi. Porous metal one-third the part thickness. Severe weld lines often form where pins modified with flats for venting (see ly require ejector-pin vents at the tip of flow streams meet head on. that emp- Ejector-Pin Vent Figure 7-16 Overflow Well Figure 7-17 0. usually about disassembly for cleaning. such as posts and bosses. Posts usual. Ejector-pin vents usually the post. should address: the strength and appearance of these trap areas not accessible by ejector-pin weld lines by installing overflow wells vents may require vents placed along • Direct mold filling along the length (see figure 7-17). behind the flow front and lead to splay thickness to change the filling pattern usually the tip or end. Other venting issues you the end of fill. consider using ejector inside diameter of the boss. recesses in the mold can exit these areas When feasible. especially at figure 7-16). or teardrop-shaped surface defects. This of the rib so gasses can escape at modified vent features that provide an type of vent usually requires periodic the ends. • Round or angle the ends of standing filling of the cavity and causing a gas cult air-trap areas but may require peri. If air. Ejector pin in forward position showing flats added to provide venting.

injection unit. Overflow wells can also into the cavity. elevated filling pressure. In many Sprue bushings convey the melt from the press nozzle tip to the mold parting line. Shot size and filling Sprues speed. molds. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Sprue Bushing Figure 7-18 parting line. as well as the flow properties of the specific resin.75-inch radius — to receive and seal Radius off against the rounded tip of the press injection nozzle. A material. runners. Cool material at the leading deliver molten resin to the mold of material shear and lead to material edge of the advancing flow fronts through a hole in the center of the degradation. Venting air SPRUES. provide ejector-pin locations for parts of the material delivery system are such as clock faces or instrument lenses discussed in this section. This eases removal of the molded sprue.02 – 0. govern the required The sprue. delivers resin to the desired depth into the mold.5-in or 0. The sprue orifice size.5-in/ft Taper figure 7-18). These areas see the ties into a cylindrical well. The sprue bushing flow-channel diameter typically tapers larger toward the parting line at a rate of 0. the greatest restriction to materi- al flow occurs at the press nozzle tip and sprue orifice. AND GATES highest volumetric flow rate of the escapes the well around a shortened entire system. and gates — then because the tip orifice must be slightly ejected with the part and clipped off leads the resin through the mold and smaller than the sprue orifice to avoid after molding. and merges and enters the overflow well stationary press platen.08-in 0. The problem leaving hotter material to mix and fuse delivery system — usually consisting can be worse in the press nozzle tip at the weld line. oriented parallel to the press flow rate. comes standard in odd 1/32s from 5/32 to 11/32 inch. The volumetric flow rate used during that cannot tolerate ejector-pin marks filling largely determines the correct on the part surface. Sprue Bushing Sprue design can affect molding effi- ciency and ease of processing.or Nozzle Tip 0.5. Though they can be cut directly into the mold. sprue orifice size.5 inch per foot. The head end of the sprue bushing comes premachined with a spherical recess — typically 0. the diameter at the small end. The overflow well is of a sprue. usually the 133 . RUNNERS.002-inch Standard horizontal clamp presses sprue orifice can generate large amounts clearance. sprue bushings 0.75-in Spherical Radius are usually purchased as off-the-shelf Locating Ring items and inserted into the mold (see 0. cosmetic problems. These components forming an undercut. An excessively small ejector pin fitted with a 0.

and runner volume. Figure 7-19 diameter at the base. 7/32 in Sprue-size (small. amorphous resins and thin features may need a fast filling excessive filling pressures and related and blends such as Makrolon speed to prevent premature cooling of processing problems. some molds 60 rely on extension press nozzles that 50 reach deep into the mold to reduce 40 sprue length. Overly thick runners can orifice diameters to avoid problems of various lengths. 90 9/32 in eliminating or shortening the molded 80 TOTAL SHOT VOLUME (in3) 70 cold sprue. For example. Lustran ABS. 30 end diameter) 20 recommendations 10 5/32 in Runners as a function of 0 shot volume and 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 fill time. Standard sprue taper. increase costs associated with regrind. Hot sprue bushings 110 have a heated flow channel that transports 100 material along its length in molten form. leads to large base Because the maximum shear rate in a diameters in long sprues. The diameter at the base of the sprue Figure 7-19 shows typical sprue sizes increases with increasing sprue length. for Bayer amorphous resins as a func. Other geometries may runner design requires a balance Bayblend PC/ABS resins require require slower filling speeds to prevent between ease of filling. For example. semicrystalline resins such as excessive clamp tonnage requirements. Part geometry lengthen cycle time needlessly and associated with excessive flow shear.5-inch 134 . Durethan PA 6 and Pocan PBT. thin runners can cause • As a general rule. typically one- tion of shot size and filling time. influences filling time to some extent. half inch per foot. 140 11/32 in 130 Hot sprue bushings provide one solution 120 to this problem. sprue occurs at the orifice and the a 6-inch sprue with a 7/32-inch orifice majority of shear heating and pressure diameter will have nearly a 0. Additionally. runners typically transport material through channels machined into the parting line. Unlike sprues. which deliver material ANTICIPATED FILL TIME (seconds) depthwise through the center of the mold plates. Runner design • Large parts and/or parts needing fast loss takes place in the first two inches. and the thin features. The optimum polycarbonate. This large base 160 diameter lengthens cooling and cycle 150 times and also leads to regrind problems. parts with a mix of thick Conversely. mold design larger sprues and runners than problems such as cosmetic defects or feasibility. influences part quality and molding filling speeds require large sprue these guidelines should apply to sprues efficiency.

Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Runner Cross Sections Figure 7-20 Good *Better Best Poor Poor Poor *“Round-Bottomed” Trapezoid Full round runners provide the most efficient flow. The optimum • Increase runner thickness for long increasing the potential for mismatch runner diameter depends on a variety runners and runners subjected to and flow restriction. • Amorphous resins typically require half. optimize the route to through the runner. make runners resins. for ejection. machining in both halves of the mold. part high volumetric flow rates. Material passing through the runner The runner system often accounts for during mold filling forms a frozen wall more than 40% of the pressure required layer as the mold steel draws heat from to fill the mold. requires machining in just one mold runner length. Because much of this the melt. replace cornered paths surface and generate the smallest per. wall thickness. A good alternative. area. Essentially a round cross section larger runners than semicrystalline with sides tapered by five degrees • For sufficient packing. Round runners require filling pressure. and material viscosity. and runner volume. cycle time. Round cross-section each gate to minimize runner length. filling speed and pressure. 135 . the “round-bottomed” trapezoid. packing. of factors including part volume. with diagonals or reorient the cavity to centage of frozen layer cross-sectional shorten the runner. thickness. they become less efficient (see Runner thickness has a direct effect on figure 7-20). As runner designs deviate from round. runners minimize contact with the mold For example. This layer restricts the flow pressure drop can be attributed to channel and increases the pressure drop runner length. this design is nearly as at least as thick as the part nominal efficient as the full-round design.

reasonable. rsec = (rprim2 ÷ 2)1/2 so rsec = (0. but not necessarily optimum. to mold-filling analysis to achieve a higher For example a primary runner section calculate diameters for two secondary level of optimization. Consider computerized segment by the anticipated filling time.25-inch primary runner: Bayer resins.25-inch anticipated filling time of 3 seconds. primary runner. first solve for a runner would have a volumetric flow rate of diameter with half the cross-sectional 1 in3/sec. runner diameters usually generate flow rate by dividing the part volume sectional area of the primary runner. For example. with an runners branching from a 0. standard cutter size. feeding half of a 6 in3 part.1252 ÷ 2)1/2 and dsec= 0. of material passing through the runner and then round up to the nearest runner sizes. Figures 7-21 and 7-22 provide a As an approximation. Amorphous-Runner Diameters Figure 7-21 Semicrystalline-Runner Diameters Figure 7-22 5 5 1/2 in 1/2 in 7/16 in 4 4 7/16 in 3/8 in 3 3 3/8 in 5/16 in 2 2 5/16 in FLOW RATE (in3/s) FLOW RATE (in3/s) 1/4 in 1/4 in 1 1 3/16 in 3/16 in 1/8 in 1/8 in 0 0 0 3 6 9 12 0 3 6 9 12 RUNNER LENGTH (in) RUNNER LENGTH (in) Runner-diameter guidelines based on volumetric flow rate and Runner-diameter guidelines based on volumetric flow rate and runner length. runner length.177 where r = radius and d = diameter 136 . the secondary runner means for estimating primary-runner secondary-runner diameters so that diameter becomes 3/16 inch. Use figure 7-21 for amorphous area of the 0. calculate Rounding up. The diameters based on volumetric flow the total cross-sectional area of the methods outlined above for calculating rate and runner length. Calculate the secondary runners equals the cross. and figure 7-22 for semi- crystalline Bayer resins.

The same Well computer techniques balance flow within Good Better multi-gated parts. Naturally balanced runners 7-24) work well for tight clusters of provide an equal flow distance from the small cavities. However they become Runners for multicavity molds require press nozzle to the gate on each cavity. Molds producing multiples of the same part should also provide balanced flow to the ends of The spoked runner on the right provides a cold slug well at the end of each primary runner branch. molds. leading to less shrinkage variation and fewer part-quality problems. should be designed so that all parts finish filling at the same time. less efficient as cavity spacing increases special attention. Figure 7-24 Spoked Runners packing and/or flash formation in the cavities that fill first. Consider computerized mold- filling analysis to adjust gate locations and/or runner section lengths and diam- eters to achieve balanced flow to each Cold-Slug cavity (see figure 7-23). This reduces over. 137 . molds producing different parts of an assembly in the same shot. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Family Mold Figure 7-23 The runner diameter feeding the smaller part was reduced to balance filling. Runners for Multicavity Molds each cavity. Runners for family Spoked-runner designs (see figure because of cavity number or size.

Naturally Balanced Runners Figure 7-25 Often. The molding press flow-rate performance may limit the number of cavities that Naturally balanced runners for cavities in two rows. Generally. This gener- ally limits cavity number to an integer power of two — 2. 4. — as shown in figure 7-25. it makes more sense to orient cavities in rows rather than circles. To be naturally balanced. Assuming a constant flow rate feeding the mold. Rows of cavities generally have branched runners consisting of a primary main feed channel and a network of secondary or tertiary runners to feed each cavity. 32. 138 . 16. etc. can be simultaneously molded if the press cannot maintain an adequate flow-front velocity. the flow path to each cavity must be of equal length and make the same number and type of turns and splits. the flow-front velocity in the cavity halves after each split. 8. the runner diameter decreases after each split in response to the decreased number of cavities sharing that runner segment.

Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Figure 7-26 Runner Balancing • As a general rule. Avoid secondary/primary runner junction long drops because the taper can lead to to the gates on the outboard cavities.6s d = 0. Artificially balanced A designs usually adjust runner-segment diameters to compensate for differences 0.5 in/ft Taper in runner flow length. Be sure these Naturally the cavity parting line. and gate-design guidelines. secondary runner To ease removal from the mold.8d runner feeds two rows of cavities s or through equal-length secondary runners. For instance. Tapered drops features do not restrict flow. Artificially Figure 7-27 Three-Plate Runner Balanced Good Bad Good The artificially balanced runner achieves flow (Too Restrictive) balance by adjusting runner diameters instead of by maintaining uniform runner length.8d 0. See Balanced typically project from the main runner figure 7-27 for three-plate runner to pinpoint gates on the part surface. for the cavities with shortest runner flow distance (see figure 7-26). 139 . Unbalanced Runners for three-plate molds (see Three-plate runners usually require figures 7-2A through 7-2C) initially sucker pins or some other feature to convey material along the runner-split hold the runner on the stripper plate parting line and then burrow perpendic. in ladder runners. These designs require enough secondary runner length to flow balance using reasonable runner diameters. d = 0. excessive thickness at the runner junc- tion or flow restriction at the thin end.6s The diameters of these secondary runners are made progressively smaller Three-plate runner system guidelines.5 inch per foot. A Artificially balanced runners provide Sucker Pin balanced filling and can greatly reduce runner volume. B 90° cially balanced runner design. until the drops clear the center plate ularly through the middle plate to during mold opening. the most common artifi. a primary B 0. these length should be no less than 1/5 the drops taper smaller toward the gate at a flow distance from the inboard rate of about 0.

5C to 0. the distance from the end These tab gates allow quick removal gated systems which have no runner or edge of the runner to the part edge. The common edge exceed 0. Gates part via a rectangular gate opening. high. thickness area for easier separation of better packing and cosmetics than stan- the part from the runner system.060 in Max. land length. limit the after molding or hidden in assembly. pressure from the press injection unit can stop earlier in the cycle. highly cosmetic as Part holding phases of injection. gates connect the runner to the to no more than 0. gate (see figure 7-28) typically projects point.65C “t” Gate Thickness PL “C” Section C-C Section D-D Common edge-gate guidelines. Applied applications. dard edge gates on some thick-walled parts. Chisel gates taper from the runner from the end of the runner and feeds the to the part edge with little or no straight land area.040 – 0.060 inch for Bayer appearance. Gates perform two major functions. and large-volume parts. the A variety of gate designs feed directly land length for fan gates should not The gate tab can be hidden in the assembly into the parting line. gate width. First. Except for special cases. of the gate without concern about gate sections. before the Fan gates and chisel gates. Thickness through the gate after the packing and viscosity materials. They are therefore preferred Tab Same material in the cavity from backing for shear-sensitive materials. Fan gates and chisel gates can provide better cosmetics in some applications. Chisel gates can provide Gate Land 0. Edge gates can also extend to 140 .060 in Land t = 0. Like the standard edge gate. saving of the edge gate. variations part or runner system solidifies. such as sprue. tabs (see figure 7-30) that are removed When designing edge gates. part. gates provide a reduced. thermoplastics. runner (see figure 7-29) to increase the Secondly. flare wider from the energy and press wear-and-tear.060 in Max. Figure 7-28 Common Edge Gate Figure 7-29 Variations of the Edge Gate Fan Gate Chisel Gate Radius Runner 0.060 inch at the narrowest or trimmed off after molding. C C D D Gate Width “w” 0. Edge gates generate both of which require the thickness to be less flow shear and consume less less than the runner and part wall. pressure than most self-degating Figure 7-30 Tab Gate gates freeze-off and prevent pressurized designs.

This design. This gate can be trimmed without leaving a gate mark on the cosmetic part surface. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued “Z” Runner Figure 7-31 Gate Under the Edge Figure 7-32 x Cold-Slug Well x Section x-x 0. large edge gates. Edge gates may also extend from the cold-slug well at the end of the runner. tunnel gates can reach part edge (see figure 7-31). Depending upon their 141 . 0. The gates typically to reduce gate blush by providing uniform feed surfaces oriented perpendicular to flow along the width of the gate and a the mold face. Because they extend under the mold side of a runner oriented parallel to the To hide the large gate vestige left by parting surfaces.060 in Maximum Gate Land PL Edge gate from the side of a “Z” runner. the gate can extend surfaces or features that are not located coupled with a “Z”-style runner. tends under the edge as shown in figure 7-32.060 in Max. on the parting line.

Normally. The runner must flex for the gate The orifice edge closest to the parting mold opening (see figures 7-33 and to clear the undercut in the mold steel. When molding abrasive materials mold opening often require a sucker pin if the runner is too stiff or if the ejector such as those filled with glass or mineral. Also. line must remain sharp to shear the gate 7-34). 142 . Tunnel gates that degate during The gate may break or lock in the mold cleanly. from the part during mold opening. make the gate of hardened or specially hold the runner on the ejector half of the the ejector pin should be at least two treated mold steel to reduce wear. design. Knockout-Pin Gate Figure 7-33 Stationary-Side Tunnel Gate Figure 7-34 PL Knockout Pins Runner Flexes During Ejection Tunnel gates that extend below the parting line on the ejector side Tunnel gates into non-ejector side of the mold degate and separate of the mold degate during ejection. runner diameters away from the base of consider fabricating the gate on an the gate. or a feature similar to a sprue puller to pin is too close to the gate. they degate during ejection or mold.

The modified-tunnel gate Effective Gate design (see figure 7-36) maintains a Diameter A A Critical large flow diameter up to the gate shear- Gate Thickness off point to reduce pressure loss and Section Section A-A A-A excessive shear heating. glass-filled 45 – 65° 40 – 50° grades for example. Curved-tunnel gates can reach past the finished edge to the underside of surfaces oriented parallel to the parting plane. Modified tunnel-gate guidelines. Curved-tunnel gates permit gating into the underside of surfaces that are oriented parallel to the parting plane Curved-Tunnel Gate Figure 7-37 (see figure 7-37). The curved gate must uncurl as the runner advances on guided posts during ejection. The drop angle and conical angle must be large Parting Parting Line enough to facilitate easy ejection (see Line figure 7-35). 143 . Stiff materials. Unlike mold fabrica- tion for conventional tunnel gates. the curved. Standard tunnel-gate guidelines. undercut shape of this design must be machined or EDM burned on the surface of a split gate insert. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Tunnel-Gate Modified Tunnel- Configuration Figure 7-35 Gate Configuration Figure 7-36 insert for easy replacement. generally require drop angles and conical angles at the A 20 – 30° A high side of the range shown in the 5 – 10° figure.

Curved-Tunnel-Gate Guidelines Figure 7-38 Other Gate Designs Pinpoint gates feed directly into part X surfaces lying parallel to the mold part- ing plane. See figures 7-38 and 7-39 for curved-tunnel gate design guidelines.020 – 0.600 in) For clean degating.012 – 0. 0. Because gate size must also be kept L1 > L2 small. Avoid this gate for filled materials.160 to 0. 0. or materials with very high stiffness.5 mm flexible at ejection temperature such 0. Both of these pinpoint gate designs provide a well-defined break-off point for clean degating.235 in) figure 7-40) to minimize gate vestige. 0. multiple pinpoint gates d1 can help reduce flow length on large L2 d2 r parts and allow gating into areas that are inaccessible from the part perimeter. X > 2.5 to 3 x d1 d1 to d2 Equals a Taper pinpoint gates seldom require trimming. the gate design must D 1 provide a positive break-off point (see D = Approx.3 – 2. Lustran ABS.100 in Dia. 144 . 90° 0. d1 < D (Normally 4 to 6 mm / Set in recesses or hidden under labels. brittle materials. 0. of 3° to 5° Incl. On the ends of three-plate D runner drops.5 mm Dia. 4 to 6 mm L1 (0. Design permitting. and amorphous blends such as Bayblend and Makroblend resins.235 in) properly designed and maintained r = 2. The curved tunnel gate needs a well-defined break-off point for clean degating.0 mm Max.080 in Max. 15 mm (0.080-inch Curved-Tunnel-Gate This gate design works well for unfilled Figure 7-39 Design Guidelines Figure 7-40 Pinpoint Gate materials that remain somewhat 0. typically less than a 0.5 or Min.020 in 90° as Makrolon PC.8 – 2.150 to 0. pinpoint gates should be placed in recessed gate wells to accommodate gate vestige.

diameter.and/or mineral-filled nylons sufficient packing for parts with thick may pack sufficiently with gates as wall sections. gears. the gate extends directly freeze-off long enough to inject shear rates and shear heating. inside of the cylinder. which extends from the center disk to the around the core. Factors affecting optimum gate size small as one-third the wall thickness. and bosses. gates must remain open and free from rates in gates can generate excessive Typically. of the hole (see figure 7-41). Degating usually involves through from features such as ribs punching or drilling through the hole. the — often require disproportionately diaphragm gate. and fans often use number of gates. needed for packing alone. Parts with holes in the center such as filling speed. Degating involves trimming away the sprue and • Unfilled materials require gates that Thin-walled parts — those with nomi- conical gate section flush with the outer are at least half as thick as the part. pinpoint gates may not provide Gate Optimization • Glass. nal wall thicknesses less than 1. and The volumetric flow rate through the filter bowls. High flow symmetrical filling without knitlines. gate extending from a center disk (see or parts that could exhibit read- figure 7-42). For proper packing. part volume. damaging from a sprue and feeds the cavity additional material during packing to the material and leading to a variety of through a continuous gate into the edge compensate for shrinkage. feeds the inside edge • Use gates that are two-thirds the part large gates to accommodate the very of the hole from a circumferential edge thickness for highly cosmetic parts high filling speeds needed for filling. must be removed in a secondary step. material properties. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Figure 7-41 Filter-Bowl Gate Figure 7-42 Diaphragm Gate Trim Here Typical filter-bowl gate avoids knitlines and provides even flow The diaphragm gate. Gate thickness controls gate may dictate gate sizes larger than the “filter-bowl” gate design to provide packing ability. Another design variation.5 mm surface. In general: molding problems. 145 . include part thickness.

000 the gate into the part wall sections.000 runner valve gates are often required to calculate bulk shear rate using an esti. Note that the rectangular. Q = flow rate (in3/sec) Texin TPU 20. increasing the diameter of a Note: See figure 7-28 for edge gate or cosmetic applications.000 excessive gate vestige.000 Volumetric flow rate and gate size con. less accurate but simpler method is to Apec 40.000 trol shear rate in the gate. Materials differ in the maximum shear by about 40% reduces the shear rate ume passing through the gate by the rate they can tolerate before problems by half.000 reduces the shear rate by about half. this will mean shear-rate limits for a variety of Bayer assigning a portion of the part volume resins.000 The effect of gate size on bulk shear w = gate width (in) Desmopan 20. For t = gate thickness (in) Note: Use 1/2 these values for flame- retardant grades and for critical transparent example. estimated time to fill the cavity.000 r = gate radius (in) Texin PC/TPU 10. A Makrolon 40.000 the filling speed or flow rate by half Where: Durethan (reinf.000 Lustran ABS 40. uniform volumetric flow rate in Makroblend 40. Bayblend 40.000 rate in the gate is roughly proportional to the volumetric flow rate. Shear-related problems seldom to each gate. occur below these limits.000 achieve the required gate size without mated.) 40. For occur. doubling the width or increasing the thickness To calculate flow rate.000 shear rate = 4Q/πr3 for round gates Cadon 15. Bulk shear shear rate = 6Q/wt2 for rectangular gates Centrex 40. 146 . Lustran SAN 40. round gate by 25% cuts the shear rate nomenclature. divide the vol. Ideally these gates should feed system when calculating the maximum into thickened wells that ease flow from shear rate encountered in the gate. Reducing Durethan 60.Gate diameters that are greater than Computer flow analysis can take Table 7-1 Bulk Shear-Rate Limits 80% of the wall thickness are often into account the best filling-speed and required to prevent excessive gate injection-velocity profile for a given Polymer Family Shear Rate 1/s shear.000 rate depends on the gate geometry. For rectangular gates. gate formula becomes more accurate when the gate width is much greater than the gate thickness. to half. Hot. Table 7-1 lists the suggested parts with multiple gates. the appropriate shear-rate formula: Triax (PA/ABS) 50.

based upon the packing rules strategic intervals for multi-gated feasible: or on the size needed to stay within parts. position the gates to provide uniform flow orientation along the part length. Flow orientation has a large effect on part performance and appearance. Keep this in mind • Adjust the diameter of round gates. and For example. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued To minimize packing and gate shear Gate Position Gate position determines the filling problems: pattern and resulting flow orientation. always try to gate into the thickest sections to avoid packing problems and sink. and fiber-filled plastics. 147 . Shrinkage in degate cleanly. filling and minimize flow length. they might result in direction of applied stress and strain. unsightly gate marks or weld lines in • Increase the quantity of gates if the cosmetic areas. which tend to shrink as slides or lifters may also restrict just a little more in the flow direction gating to less-than-ideal locations. • Position gates to direct filling in the whichever is larger. performance. which typically mold design feasibility. When gates. Ideally stress in the flow direction as in the the gate would be positioned to balance cross-flow direction. Glass- the packing rules and adjust the appearance. The location of the fiber-filled plastics can often withstand width to achieve an acceptable gate gate determines the filling pattern and more than twice the level of applied shear rate. Cavity layout restric. when choosing gate locations for parts such as tunnel gates and pinpoint cally near the center of the part or at subjected to mechanical loads. Gate position can have a direct impact Plastics typically exhibit greater • Set edge-gate thickness according to on part moldability. • To minimize warpage and dimensional problems in glass-filled plastics. shrinkage in the mold. is only best gate position is often a compromise slightly affected by flow orientation. Flow orientation also affects part calculated gate size is too large to struction costs. Corporation has the experience and As general rules: resources to assist you in choosing the optimum gate locations. maximum material flow length. typi. The than in the cross-flow direction. The Design exhibit two or three times as much Engineering Services Group at Bayer shrinkage in the cross-flow direction. Often these best gate locations for the shear-rate limits of the material: filling are unacceptable for other reasons. between molding ease and efficiency. strength in the flow direction. • In parts with varying thickness. tions and mechanisms in the mold such unfilled plastics. and cost. or increase mold con.

Cool Mold Steel Cool Mold Steel consider adding a thickened channel or Annular Flow Channel Insulating Air Gap flow leader from the gate to the thicker Heated Probe Stagnant Layer Heater wall sections to facilitate packing and minimize shrinkage variations. gate removal often leaves scratches or notches that can act The flow length resulting from the chosen The pressure imbalance from uneven as stress concentrators that weaken the gate locations must not exceed the flow flow around long. pinches the thicker wall. Unlike externally heated systems. require symmetric gating around the ing from the gate toward the last areas core or wall-thickness adjustments to to fill. This flow hesitation can lead to freeze-off and incomplete filling of the thin-wall section. Consider computerized mold-filling non-fill opposite the gate and/or mold- analysis if the flow length is marginal or opening or ejection problems as the if the wall thickness varies or is outside core springs back after filling and the range of published spiral flow data. Often. the entire part. See Chapter 2 for more information on flow leaders. The advancing flow front in parts with thick and thin wall section will often hesitate in the thin walls until the thicker walls have filled. Also. This is particularly helpful in thin-walled parts which are prone to Internally Heated Externally Heated flow-hesitation problems. For these reasons: capabilities of the material. Such parts Flow leaders. thickened areas extend. unsupported cores area. Check the can bend or shift the cores within the calculated flow length. positioning the gate so that the thinnest walls are near the end of fill reduces the hesitation time. can aid filling without thickening balance flow around the core. against the published and reduces the wall thickness opposite applied stress such as screw bosses. this can lead to snap arms or attachment points. In severe cases.Avoid thin-to-thick filling scenarios. Gates typically generate elevated levels of molded-in stress in the part area near the gate. Figure 7-43 Internally vs. enabling the thin sections to fill. This core shift increases the wall • Avoid gating into or near areas that shortest distance from the gate to the thickness on the side nearest the gate will be subject to high levels of last area to fill. spiral flow data for the material. usually the mold. internally heated hot-runner systems form a cool layer of stagnant material along the outer surface of the flow channel. 148 . Externally Heated Hot Runners When gating must feed a thinner wall. the gate.

this material can degrade and ture throughout the system via separate produce black specks. conduits in the mold to prevent shorting transitions between components. sequential-filling designs part. Over heaters maintain uniform melt tempera. delivering it directly plates. must solidify just enough to prevent embedded. gate between injection cycles. Pinched thermocouple wires can • Avoid internally heated designs when into the mold cavity or to a cold-runner cause erroneous temperature measure. you must control drop that receives melt from the press engineering thermoplastics. or when surface cosmetics cold-runner size and runner regrind. They also facilitate configurations (see figure 7-43). of standard designs. the material in the hot-drop tip Hot-Runner Designs hot-runner components or encapsulated. Internally heated designs typi. These system through gates at the ends of the systems rely on heaters or thermal con. where the hot-drop tips contact the parallel to the mold face. are critical. ly distribute flow to widely dispersed Hot-runner systems are available in gates with little pressure loss or melt both externally and internally heated temperature change. lated channels to transport molten resin or pinching of the wires between mold through the mold. brown streaks. internally heat transfer into and out of the area nozzle. temperature through heat supplied from Molten materials exit the hot-runner cusses hot-runner design issues. temperature controllers and strategically and other cosmetic problems in molded placed thermocouples. The same problems can occur in all types of hot-runner systems if the flow channels are not streamlined to 149 . hot temperatures and degraded material. In conventional hot-runner ductors attached to the outside of the gates. and drops that vantage in some applications. time. heated drops. To achieve the optimum balance. and/or heat pipes to distribute heat. it may costing a few hundred dollars to large. or inserted under the metal material leakage or drool through the Commercially available in a wide array surface. some maintenance costs. hot sprue bushings of torpedo heaters or heated probes and forms a large cold slug. runners add to mold construction and In addition to resistance heaters. placed inside the flow channel. areas in the hot runner where material Properly designed hot runners efficient. molding transparent or heat-sensitive system. This section dis. Used to eliminate or reduce ments and lead to excessive heater materials. a manifold to distribute flow heated designs have an inherent disad. The many wires parts. Externally heated designs maintain the line runners and gates. Although both types of hot runners one of the most challenging aspects of Most hot runners consist of a center have been used successfully with Bayer hot-runner design. if it solidifies too much range from simple. Zones of electrical-resistant outer surface of the flow channels. and can complicate designs use high-conductivity metals • Streamline flow channels to eliminate processing and mold startup procedures. leave blemishes on the next molded valve-gated. Internally mold. could hang-up and degrade. outside the molten flow channel. move material perpendicularly through heated flow channels tend to form a the mold plate to the mold cavity or stagnant layer of material on the cooler cold runner. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued HOT-RUNNER SYSTEMS feeding the heaters and thermocouples prevent material hang-up at trouble are usually guided through channels or spots such as corner plugs and the Hot-runner systems use heated or insu. hot-runner systems cally maintain melt temperature by way Conversely. Hot-Runner Gates gating in areas inaccessible from parting. costing tens of thousands of dollars.

amorphous transfer. Because they isolate the tip orifice size and shape. This plastic layer remains in place until the tip is removed for service. of styles. Mini-sprue gates (see figure engineering plastics. melt temperature. Because the insulating layer can degrade in time and release burnt material into the melt stream. Free-flowing gate designs provide the large orifice sizes and low shear rates required by many high-viscosity amorphous resins. the first material shot Mini-Sprue Gate Standard Gate through the hot-runner system fills a gap at the tip of the drop and forms an insulating layer of plastic (see figure 7-44). These designs are not suitable for all applications. including the molding material. the proximi. In some designs. Many factors determine the rate of heat Hot-runner gates come in a variety designs for high-viscosity. 150 . Contact your hot-runner manufacturer for guidance in selecting the best tip design for your material and application. avoid this design for transparent parts and any part that cannot tolerate occasional Mini-Sprue Gate Vestige streaks or black specks. Many designs minimize the drop-to-mold contact area or insulate Figure 7-45 Free-Flow Gates the tip to reduce heat loss to the mold. and cycle time. 7-45) are one of the most popular the heated portion of the drop further ty of cooling channels. Insulated Tips Figure 7-44 Some hot-tip gate designs rely on an insulating layer of the molding material to control heat transfer at the Stagnant Material Stagnant Material tip.

as the components heat and expand (see figure 7-46). to prevent heat accommodate the substantial growth of unheated probes in the tip to promote buildup and variations in gloss on the system between these fixed points cleaner gate separation with less vestige the part surface. but require between 400 and 600°F for Bayer form a short sprue on the runner or part. during startup. problems with free-flowing mechanical shutoffs to prevent leakage gate types. the valve pin in the valve gate leaves a ring similar to an ejector-pin mark. or drool. THERMAL EXPANSION AND ISOLATION from the mold surface. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Reduced-Vestige Gate Figure 7-46 cycles. typically with some designs. The design must designs rely on annular flow around opposite the gate. A stationary probe in the reduced-vestige gate helps the gate break cleanly. and increased mold complexity. mini-sprue gates • Crystalline resins — including PA 6. Mini-sprue gates vestige gate designs. careful temperature control to prevent resins. Drawbacks of valve-gated systems include higher cost. Some anti-vestige both on the gate side and side end of each hot drop. Usually. ABS. at the manifold centering ring and at the require trimming. reduced. and expansion. valve-gated hot runners use hydraulically or pneumatically driven Reduced-Vestige Gate Valve Gate valves to close the gate orifice mechani- cally. expansion and thermal isolation within Standard free-flowing gates typically the mold. you must address both thermal freeze-off or drooling. Rather than relying on delicate control of temperature and heat transfer to seal the gate between injection 151 . and accommodate very large gates. In the closed position. Valves designed to shutoff flush with the mold surface produce no gate vestige and leave only a ring witness mark simi- lar to an ejector-pin mark. These valves provide positive gate shutoff. offer freedom from drool. tures of hot-runner systems. usually do not develop the heat build up PA 66 and PBT — are generally Because of the high operating tempera- and dull gate blemish problems associated more tolerant of restrictive. Designs with long drops SAN — tend to experience fewer Some hot-runner designs feature may simply allow the drops to flex. mechanical shutoff designs offer the Small Vestige Slight Gate Ring option to open gates sequentially to maintain a continuous flow front over long distances without knitlines. which may • Direct mold cooling to the gate area. Additionally. frequent mainte- nance. hot runners are fixed leave a short gate vestige. Systems with short drops often have a sliding fit between • Amorphous engineering resins — Valve Gates the drop and the manifold to allow for including PC. PC blends.

VOLUMETRIC FLOW RATE (in3/s) Use this graph to calculate the pressure drop per inch of heated hot-runner channel. hot-runner channels can dividing the volume of material. Generally hot. Figure 7-47 shows the approximate channel length in inches by the pressure nels and gates require proper sizing for correlation between pressure gradient gradient. To estimate the pressure drop in psi. The pressure-gradient range optimum performance. creating a messy problem. number of seconds required to fill the mold. fed by that section by the of Makrolon polycarbonate. Then read from the graph the pressure gradient corresponding to the flow rate and channel size. Flow Channel Size As in cold-runner systems. some designs surround the 5 10 15 20 heated components with insulating material and/or infrared reflectors. and flow rate at various diameters for for a given flow rate and channel diam- runner gate sizes should follow the size a range of Bayer engineering resins.The length of the hot drops also grows Hot-Runner-Channel Pressure Gradients Figure 7-47 significantly during startup. multiply the 152 . first gradient values for low-viscosity chapter. Some designs only create a positive seal at the 1. flow chan. When feasible. and consequently consume less pressure.000 tip of the drop when at the intended operating temperature. PRESSURE GRADIENT ( psi/in) To avoid excessive heat loss to the 1/2 in mold. Use the lower pressure- in the gate-optimization section of this a given hot-runner channel section. in higher values for high-viscosity grades be considerably larger than cold runners cubic inches. Hot-runner manufac- turers calculate the expansion and make 3/8 in expansion provisions based on the hot- runner configuration and anticipated 500 operating temperatures. Plastic injected 1/4 in before the drop reaches this temperature could flow into the gap between the hot- 750 runner drop and the mold plate. use 5/8 in materials with low thermal conductivity at the contact points. eter correlates to the range of material guidelines for cold-runner gates outlined To estimate the pressure drop through viscosities. In addition to an insulating air gap around the hot-runner system. With regrind or runner waste calculate the flow rate in that section by materials such as Durethan PA 6 and not a concern. minimize metal-to-metal contact 250 between the heated hot-runner compo- nents and the mold.

If not. mold mechanism. 153 . after the feed balance flow. the areas to prevent black specks. In thermoplastic molding. consider early in the mold-design process. Most namic needs of the product and mold. removing heat for solidification. and ejection ters are assigned to the channels or hot system designs are already designed. This hot-runner manufacturers will calculate section discusses mold cooling. Despite this. many cooling designs must choice of channel diameters is often accommodate available space and machin- limited to the standard sizes offered ing convenience rather than the thermody- by the hot-runner manufacturer. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Stagnant Flow Figure 7-48 Incorrect Correct Plastic Improper flow-channel design and construction can result in stagnant-flow areas where material can degrade. Most hot-runner systems are naturally The process of drilling flow channels MOLD COOLING balanced and provide an equal flow can produce dead spaces where material distance to each hot-runner gate. the mold hot-runner channels branch off to form Plug and streamline the flow in these performs three basic functions: forming secondary or tertiary channels. time. Of the three. heat in material throughput. Unbalanced between poorly fitting components removal usually takes the longest time configurations — for example a row of and at unblended transitions in the and has the greatest direct effect on cycle drops fed from a common manifold flow channel. consider computer flow simulation. a topic to the required diameters for you. burnt molten material into the product shape. channel diameters can become smaller streaks. drops feeding the shorter flow path. Typically. As the can stagnate and degrade (see figure 7-48). and to accommodate the corresponding drop Dead spaces can also occur at gaps ejecting the solid part. and material discoloration. flow-channel diameters to the mold-design process. system. mold cooling-channel channel — need careful adjustment of design often occurs as an afterthought in the hot-drop. The Consequently. smaller diame.

mold-cooling conditions. Uneven cooling causes variations • Core out thick sections or provide in mold-surface temperature that can extra cooling in thick areas to lead to non-uniform part-surface minimize the effect on cycle time. and achieves short Makrolon GF PC 60 Makrolon PC molding cycles. Improper cooling can introduce elevated levels of thermal and 40 shrinkage stresses resulting from cool- COOLING TIME tk (sec) ing-rate variations throughout the part. their silvery appearance on the part sur- face. provides Bayblend PC/ABS uniform cooling. layer and enhance replication of the Material thermal conductivity and part fine microtexture on the molding sur. Wall Thickness Figure 7-49 80 Good mold-cooling design maintains Lustran ABS 70 the required mold temperature. it must first versus wall thickness for a variety of Hotter mold-surface temperatures conduct through the layers of plastic Bayer thermoplastics assuming typical lower the viscosity of the outer resin thickness to reach the mold surface. In insulators. higher more slowly than typical mold materials. This can lead to reduced gloss at transfer. plastics conduct heat much of the cooling channels. wall thickness determine the rate of heat Once at the cavity wall. distortion. and WALL THICKNESS s (mm) dimensional problems. conductivity of the mold material and mold-surface temperatures encourage Cooling time increases as a function of the spacing of the cooling channels formation of a resin-rich surface skin. appearance. heat must travel face. Optimizing mold cool- ing promotes improved part quality and 50 cost savings. 154 . reducing thickness quadruples cooling time. the cooling rate affects the 0 degree of crystallization and shrinkage. Mold-surface temperature can affect Before heat from the melt can be Figure 7-49 plots cooling time (to freeze) the surface appearance of many parts. The thermal glass-fiber-reinforced materials. part thickness squared. doubling wall This skin covers the fibers. In parts made 10 of semicrystalline resins such as PA 6 or PBT. 30 Differences in cooling rate cause areas 20 to shrink and solidify at different rates and by different amounts.Mold-Cooling Considerations Cooling Time vs. Generally good thermal through the mold material to the surface higher mold-surface temperatures. 0 1 2 3 4 mm 6 Variations in shrinkage within the part can lead to warpage. removed from the mold.

5 cooling-channel cycles and efficient cooling diameters away from the mold- are important.0 34. use Positioning the channels too close to center-to-center spacing of no more the cavity surface can cause cold spots than three cooling-channel diameters (see figure 7-50). when fast approximately 2.0 118.4 B C-17200 BeCu 68. Cooling-channel placement determines cooling efficiency and uniformity. but less efficient. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued determine heat transfer in this area. • Avoid low-conductivity mold materials.0 138.4 25.2 B = 3D Maximum (High Conductivity) C = 2.8 C17510 BeCu 135. and uneven cooling. Thermal Conductivity of Various Table 7-2 Mold Materials at 68°F Figure 7-50 Cooling-Line Spacing Thermal Conductivity BTU•ft W t Mold Material hr • ft2 • °F M°C C 420 Stainless 14.3 D P20 Steel 20.0 36. 155 . If they are too far Table 7-2 shows thermal conductivity away. • As a general rule of thumb.5D D = 3/16 in – 5/16 in for t < 1/16 in D = 5/16 in – 7/16 in for t < 1/8 in D = 7/16 in – 5/8 in for t < 1/4 in Cooling-line spacing guidelines.3 28. cooling becomes more uniform for a variety of mold materials.0 H13 Steel 16. • Place cooling-channel centerlines such as stainless steel. The spacing between adjacent Cooling-Channel Placement cooling channels also affects cooling uniformity.0 QC7 Aluminum 80. cavity surface.0 234.5 S7 Steel 21.

156 . Baffles perform a similar function by splitting the channel with a blade. flow can become mold forming inside corners in the part deeply-cored part geometries. and thermal load on this mold area than on separation transfers more heat to the core. Figure 7-51 Bubbler Figure 7-52 Spiral Cooling Channels IN IN T T OU OU IN OUT In bubblers. down the outside of the tube. may stagnate at the ends of the tion problems. Parts restricted. If they special attention to the sections of the channels may not be feasible for some are too long. standard round cooling length for optimum cooling. coolant flow design to prevent possible part distor- tend to shrink tightly onto deep cores. Corners place a higher separating from the cavity wall. If too short. Coolant flows up one side of the blade and then down the other side. This hole. the mold area in contact with the outside • Consider using spiral channels cut • Consider using baffles (see figure into inserts for large cores 7-10) and bubblers (see figure 7-51) (see figure 7-52). pay constraints. to remove heat from deep cores. coolant flows up through a tube and then cascades Round core and cavity cooled via spiral cooling channels. Because of size and/or machining • Adjust the bubbler tube or baffle When designing cooling channels.

leading to corner warpage and a reduction in corner angle. As the shifted molten core shrinks and Poor solidifies. Corner Cooling Figure 7-55 corner (see figure 7-53). hot corner area (see figure 7-54) to more effectively remove heat. improved cooling with cooling line moved closer to the inside corner. This phenomenon causes the classic hourglass distortion in box- Rounding the shaped parts. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Heat Buildup in Corner Figure 7-53 Improved Corner Cooling Figure 7-54 Water Water Line Line Smaller Large Hot Area Hot Area Illustration of heat distribution through the cross section of a corner Illustration of heat distribution through a corner cross section showing showing heat buildup in the corner of the core. There are several possible Better Better corner or removing ways to correct heat buildup on inside material from the corners including: corner lessens the heat buildup in the • Moving a cooling line closer to the corner steel. it pulls disproportionately on the inside corner. 157 . The resulting heat buildup slows cooling and shifts the molten core toward the inside. • Rounding the corner or using corner coring to remove material from the corner and lessen heat buildup (see figure 7-55).

• Using high-conductivity metal inserts or heat pipes to remove excess heat and reduce corner distortion. pressure drop per line. Cooling lines in parallel circuits Damage thermal insulators share the coolant delivered by the mold F that can aggravate heat buildup and temperature controller.25 gallons per minute to each of eight equal Figure 7-57 Cooling Circuits parallel cooling lines. and No Cooling • Placing ejector pins away from the inside corners. of parallel lines connected to it. a 10 gallon-per-minute control unit would deliver about 1.• Directing cooling into corners with Figure 7-56 Ejectors in Corners bubblers or baffles (see figure 7-56). a large rise in coolant temperature in long series circuits can lead to less efficient Parallel Series Multiple Series Multiple series cooling circuits can often provide better cooling than either parallel or series circuits. Assuming equal corner warpage. F It is better to direct Ejector Pin rate-per-line approximately equals the Bubbler cooling to the total flow rate delivered by the tempera. On the other hand. The air-gap clearance surrounding ejector pins in corners acts as an insulator and hinders heat flow out of the corner. 158 . For example. Ejector Rail corners and provide ture controller divided by the number ejection via ejector sleeves or rails. Cooling-Line Configuration A B Longer Cycle Time Shorter Cycle Time Cooling lines can be arranged in series Ejector pins in or parallel configurations (see figure Ejector corners act as 7-57). the coolant flow. Series circuits In avoid this problem by maintaining a uniform coolant flow rate throughout Out Out Out the circuit. Slight differences in pressure drop In In Out between parallel lines can cause large differences in coolant flow rate and In potential cooling problems.

000.4 • 10.000 to the coolant. = 0. requirement for the mold-temperature reduces minimum cooling time to one- the formula shows that a standard 7/16. cooling channel requires influence on cooling efficiency than reduction potential. 3. design the cooling sys- tem to achieve turbulent flow.000 8. Be sure the cooling must remove heat at four times the rate. or the mold center. At a Reynolds number of 10.000 through circuits with unequal lengths and/or restrictions. thick sections. As a Reynolds Number Figure 7-58 6.500. Reynolds number of 10. • h • deg ( m2kcal 3. control unit.000 6. You can estimate Reynolds number using the following formula. the normal design target value. Use flow-control meters to balance flow 5. consider splitting large cooling circuits into multiple smaller series circuits of equal pressure drop.160 3.3 @ 50°F = 0. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued cooling at the ends of the circuits.160 unit can deliver the cooling rate needed. ηwater = 1.000 cooling first: typically.000 system and mold-temperature control η = kinematic viscosity (centistoles) 3. Other cooling considerations to address: 159 .4 @ 150°F Multiply this value by the number of requirements of thin-walled parts.000 compromise. a ϑT = 80 °C Reynolds number significantly higher νH O = 0. ) hot cores. the cooling system 0.7 @ 100°F Do not underestimate the cooling = 0.000 ure 7-58).01 m than the turbulence onset value of about 1.000 L = 1.000 10.00 m 2. that is.000 4.346 • 10-6 m2/s 2 d = 0. Laminar Turbulent direct cooling to areas requiring the most 4.160Q Re = _______ Dη Q = gallons per minute Q = DηR ____ = ________________ D = flow channel diameter 0.000.3 @ 200°F parallel circuits to estimate the flow-rate Decreasing wall thickness by half Solving for Q assuming 150°F water. REYNOLDS NUMBER (Re) Coefficient of heat transfer as a function of Reynolds number for water. In series circuits.5 gallons per minute to achieve a mold temperature. To realize the full cycle-time- inch-diameter.438 • 0.5 gal/min = 0. Flow rate has a greater fourth. 0 2.000 Coolant Flow Rate COEFFICIENT OF HEAT TRANSFER For efficient heat transfer from the mold 2. water coolant transfers heat an order of mag- 0 nitude faster than laminar flow (see fig.

6 mold dimension 0.0 0. and other obstructions determine the amount of shrinkage for a and tend to shrink more than thin- that increase pressure drop and given application.2 the following formula: 1. flow direction. Mold designers GF 30 PC make the mold cavity larger than the 0. • Shrinkage varies with the level of packing. wall sections (see figure 7-59). quick Many processing and design factors • Thick-wall sections cool more slowly disconnects. reduce coolant flow rate.4 published by the resin supplier for the specific material can be used to estimate 0. 0 2 4 6 8 10 WALL THICKNESS (mm) Examples of shrinkage as a function of wall thickness. 160 . listed as length-per- unit-length values or as percentages.4 GF 30 PA 6 molding conditions.8 (mold dimension – part size) shrinkage = _______________________ SHRINKAGE (%) 0. 0 Published mold shrinkage data.4 0. thermoplastics shrink signifi- cantly as they cool and solidify during Shrinkage vs. MOLD SHRINKAGE Typically. is calculated using 1. and shrinkage in semicrystalline resins. 0 assumes room-temperature measurements. Mold shrinkage data 0.8 desired final part size to compensate 0. coolant flow rate through the Consider the following when addressing cooling circuits.• Avoid flow restricting.2 the amount of compensation needed.0 the molding process.6 for shrinkage. and circuits to no more than 4°F. age information with caution as it is tested under laboratory conditions that • Fiber-filled materials typically • Use flow-control meters to check may not reflect your specific part exhibit much less shrinkage in the for obstructions and to adjust the geometry or processing environment. based 0 2 4 6 8 10 on simple part geometries and standard 1. Wall Thickness Figure 7-59 1. and shrinkage: • Mixed orientation typically leads to shrinkage ranging between published • Provide enough coolant flow to limit • Cooling rate and mold temperature flow and cross-flow shrinkage values the coolant temperature rise in the can affect the level of crystallinity (see figure 7-60). Use published shrink.2 Mold shrinkage.

mold cooling. Anticipate flow orientation in glass-filled parts and apply the flow and cross-flow shrinkage values appropriately. Gate until after part ejection. Computerized size. You can PC-ABS (Bayblend) usually obtain the most accurate shrink- age values for new molds by calculating PA 6 the actual shrinkage in existing molds (Durethan) producing similar parts sampled in the GF 30 PA 6 same material. flow orientation. strained edges of the plate.5 2% a combination of engineering judgment and educated guess.100 inch.5 1 1. designing critical features and dimensions and promote higher levels of packing. increases further from the gate. longer and reduce initial shrinkage. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued Shrinkage Figure 7-60 As explained above. and gate position duration of this constraint can affect net shrinkage analysis takes some of the can limit the level of packing that can shrinkage between part features. For guesswork out of shrinkage prediction be achieved through processing adjust. features such as the distance between holes. Long cycle “steel safe” to simplify modifications to Packing typically decreases and shrinkage times constrain the part in the mold correct for errors in shrinkage prediction. Areas of random orientation will tend to the mold to compensate for volume vents significant dimensional change shrink at a level midway between the reduction. lowering shrinkage. but may not replicate production ABS (Lustran) Direction of Flow conditions. Prototype molds GF 30 PC can also be a good source of shrinkage In Direction of Flow Transverse to values. the gating. Packing forces additional material into The mold constrains the part and pre. many factors can affect the level of shrinkage. and process- PC (Makrolon) ing should be similar to that expected for the new mold. The type and flow and cross-flow values. but larly in distant thick-wall sections. the shrinkage percentage and is worth considering if the resin has ments. Ideally.Consider mold temperature delay gate freeze-off tend to be less than between the uncon. Large gate thickness and high between holes in a molded plate will undergone the required testing. BAYER RESINS PBT Published shrinkage data represents (Pocan) the typical range of shrinkage based on GF 30 PBT laboratory conditions. part thickness. can induce stresses that lead to additional shrinkage over time as the stresses relax. particu. and for highly constrained Shrinkage ranges for various Bayer resins at a 2 mm wall thickness. Applying this data to a specific part and mold requires 0 0. 161 . example. Tend toward the lower end of the range for parts thinner RANGE OF SHRINKAGE (for s = 2 mm) than 0.

nature of the molding resin. Aluminum. resins. 420SS Steel inserts and mechanical components provides less efficient cooling than Clamping Plates P20. H13. L6. For Table 7-3 Mold Steels hardness than standard aircraft-grade longer mold life and increased durability. in moderate-run production molds. P6. A6. machining ease. resists corrosion and staining but Cavity Plates P20. P6 of wear resistance and mold durability. L6. H13. mold size. but can be hard. particularly if the (30-36 HRC) provides a good mix cross-sectional thickness is not consistent. and performance requirements of the the production requirements. mechanical achieve the high hardness values of experience and comfort level of the needs. hardness. factors when selecting the mold metal Mold bases are usually made of P-20 Small inserts and components that see including. is gaining acceptance non-abrasive materials such as unfilled these applications. 420SS mold life. weldability. low-melt-temperature especially for medical parts. A2. but also on the complexity. mold making. A2 minum molds to more than 50 Rockwell This highly polishable stainless steel and Inserts A6. P6. H13. steels. Metals can Specifications for high-quality molds. P6 applications as H-13. H13. S7 conventional mold steels at the expense ratings of at least 54 HRC. exhibit greater strength and corrosion resistance is needed. A-2. aluminum. 57. Cavity Blocks P20. and A-10. H13. O6. levels greater than 56 HRC such as O-1. prehardened to 30 – 35 HRC and are steel-to-steel wear can be manufactured abrasion resistance. PC or ABS. long a popular choice for of properties for most molds running Consider prehardened mold steels for prototype molds. and durability. and the abrasive or corrosive some of the mold steels. and gate inserts for abrasive materials. specify 420 stainless steel to eliminate some of the common steels used in prototype molds to the porous metal corrosion concerns. P2. O1. P6 ened to 54-56 HRC for higher-wear areas. P-20 steel cracks in large cores. Table 7-3 lists alloys used in inexpensive. S7 are usually used in high wear areas most other mold steels. Air hardened Guide Pins O1. H13. L6. A2 within the aluminum mold to extend and Inserts A6. molds running unfilled resin grades.MOLD METALS Most high production injection molds provides superior abrasion and is often designed for engineering plastics are used in high wear areas such as runner Mold designers consider a variety of fabricated from high-quality tool steel. A2. Hard coatings less hardened to 50-52 HRC for their Components Steels can raise the surface hardness of alu. such as H-13. 420SS C (HRC) for improved wear resistance. Sprue Bushings O1. Steel manufacturers also used in vent inserts. 57. corrosion often plated to resist corrosion. Air hardened S-7 sees similar O2. O2. S7. Metals are chosen offer a variety of specialty grades with based not only on the cost. Core Blocks P20. cast-metal. range from the soft. manufacturing. P2. S7. machine more and Bushings easily than prehardened steels and can Leader Pins Nitrided H13 be hardened to 54 HRC for use with Retainers P20. and sufficient durability for many medical molders select 420 stain- Mold Common some production molds. A6. machining The heat-treating process used to mold or component. Aluminum offers easier Most abrasive glass or mineral-filled Ejector Nitrided H13 (Knockout) Pins machining and faster cycle times than resins require mold steels with hardness Ejector Plates P20. Prehardened 420 stainless Improved aluminum alloys. A2. S7 most abrasive glass or mineral-filled Slides Nitrided P20. Cavity and cores steels vary based on properties tailored to mold making. from steels that can achieve hardness resistance. Air hardened D-2 (54-56 HRC) 162 . can result in mold design and construction shop. such as (30-35 HRC) can also be used when QC-7. often O-6.

technique all affect the attainable gloss level. Low-viscosity the finish and texture of the molding in the molded part. progressively finer silicon carbide textures by photographically applying The less expensive or more easily stones ranging from 220 to 900 grit. should High-gloss finishes typically require ranging from leather finishes to wood differ by at least 2 HRC to reduce a sequence of polishing steps using grain. To protect the soft moderately fine gloss finishes. Fine scratches and roughness enhance the overall part aesthetics and PBT can replicate the fine microtexture on the molding surface will tend to hide surface blemishes such as minor and sharp edges of photoetched textures. for manufacturing mold cavities in an Higher melt temperatures and pressures plastics eject more easily from polished EDM machine can also produce textured increase the matte level by enhancing mold surfaces. release coarse. or vapor honed to an SPI D2 parable photoetched textures. glass beads to produce a low-luster such as Makrolon PC or Lustran ABS tion of ejection to ease part release and matte finish. Thermoplastic urethane surfaces ranging from very fine to the ability of the resin to replicate the resins. heat treatment. quality. Different molding resins and processing SURFACE TREATMENTS conditions can change the surface Molding-surface treatments can produce appearance of parts molded from the To varying degrees. create a non-glossy part surface and sink and gate blush. Texture tend to be the softest. such as bypass cores. coarser textures resist scratching better than fine textures. remove surface defects. plastics replicate a variety of surface finishes and textures same mold surface texture. process to create a wide array of surfaces each other. In general. and polishing the surface with glass beads. an acid-resistant masking material to replaced component should have the The surface is then polished and buffed the mold surface and then etching the lower hardness. 163 . Polish surfaces can be blasted with sand or that produced by higher-viscosity plastics molding-surface roughness in the direc. (formerly SPI #5) finish. Chapter 7 MOLD DESIGN continued As a general rule. High. The steel type and multiple etching steps or by blasting cores or components. To avoid ending with a 3-micron paste. uniformity and gloss level can be metals from abrasion and deformation. The spark-erosion process which tend to round off the microtexture. Textures produced this way fine features of the mold texture. The level variations in texture. Most thermo. exceptions to this rule. The process creates detailed galling and damage to both components. gloss finishes typically require hardness adjusted to some extent through they are often inserted into harder steel in excess of 50 HRC. of gloss attainable on the molding molding surfaces for matching textured tivity alloys can reduce heat buildup in surface generally increases with greater parts are manufactured from the same difficult-to-cool areas of the mold. make sure that the Inserts made of BeCU or high-conduc. Relatively flat The molded surface appears duller than potential part-ejection problems. with increasingly finer diamond pastes exposed areas with acid. the Rockwell hardness Polishing with 240 – 320 grit paper Photoetching uses an acid etching of mold components that slide against can produce a uniform brushed finish. more easily from mold surfaces that tend to have rounded peaks that resist have been blasted with sand or glass scratching and marring better than com- beads. The steel hardness. A surface hardness of at mold steel and have undergone the metals with the best thermal conductivity least 30 HRC is usually required for same heat treatment process. Textures can resins such as Durethan PA 6 and Pocan surface.

prolong with scrap. consider the When obtaining quotations for new parts with insufficient draft. tion against rust and corrosion.Mold components are coated or plated MOLD COST AND QUALITY • Spare parts for items prone to wear or for a variety of reasons. but also mold-maintenance costs Spare parts reduce costly down time. deposits of hard chrome. In the economical to adjust the mold steel or mineral-filled resins. only the costs of design and construc. make sure that every mold maker works from the specific set • Hardened steel molds last longer and of mold specifications. • Hardened mold interlocks and alignment features ensure proper mold alignment and prevent wear or damage due to misalignment. inspection personnel at the molding facility for mold-design input based • Money spent on enhanced mold on experience with similar molds. engineering and expense up front can dimensions by processing within a Mold release coatings such as PTFE. 164 . Extra processing conditions than to adjust problems or refurbish worn areas. mold-maintenance. cycle time. it is usually more the life of molds running glass-filled problems. cooling can pay back many times over in reduced cycle time and improved part quality. When developing with ejection problems such as medical the mold specifications. mold construction. nickel have performed well in molds mold can produce.002-inch thick. Flash chrome breakage are usually cheaper to and thin deposits of electroless nickel The true cost of a mold includes not manufacture during mold construction less than 0.001-inch thick offer protec. the least-expensive mold to produce parts in the middle of and electroless nickel plating can also option seldom produces the most the tolerance range at optimum build thickness to correct dimensional economical. following. than after the mold is in production. and press down time. improve molding efficiency and narrow processing window at less- modified hard chrome or electroless increase the number of good parts the than-optimum conditions. Thicker tion. part quality • In the long run. Hard chrome long run. high-quality parts. Also consult require less maintenance and rework processing. usually and the mold-related costs associated more than 0. and than soft steel molds.

35 edge-stiffening. 21 elastic limit. 83 dry sanding. 58 brown streaks. 33 American National (Unified) thread. 67 adhesives. 100 distortion. 100 core pulls. 143 air entrapment. 33. 132 core shift. 78 alignment. 156 creep and recovery data. 47. 149 crazing. 84 corner radius. 164 165 . 106 C curved-tunnel gates. 127 drilling. 22 compressive properties. 27. 160 agency approvals. 137 compressive stress. 154 air-curing paints. 141 blanking. 88 coefficient of friction. 149. 108 creep. 32 coefficients of linear draw polishing. 55 chisel gates. 61 cooling channel placement. 124 blow molding. 53 drills. 103 creep modulus. 129 B thermal expansion (CLTE). 80 drilled holes. 153 cooling time. 153 critical thickness. 100. 93 cavity. 91 buttress threads. 107 electric discharge machine. 149 band sawing. 132 corners. 108 ashing. 14. 64 coolant flow rate. 61 cooling rate. 58 amorphous plastics. 99 consolidation. 97 balance filling. 98 baffles. 119 brushing. 73 electrical performance. 25. 124 dipping. 54 electroless nickel. 106 chamfers. INDEX A buffing. 8 bubblers. 125 depth-to-diameter ratio. 92 design process. 12 cores. 125 cyclic loading. 157 ejector-pin vents. 124 bonding. 59. 91 bypass steel. 124 D alignment fingers. 31 ejector plate. 8 circular sawing. 125 crystallinity. 37 bulk shear rate. 100 dimensional tolerances. 20 adhesive bonding. 53 draft. 104 clicker dies. 37 cavity units. 160 E black specks. 88 corner warpage. 55. 140. 92 cavities. 130. 53 bending. 159 dry spray. 129 bolts. 121 decals. 121 ejector blades. 22 cable-guide hardware. 35 alignment features. 162 cavity assemblies. 92 cams. 54 acrylic paints. 42 cooling-vent design. 56. 132 bosses. 148 ejector assembly. 118 aluminum. 145 apparent modulus. 100 appearance. 36 dynamic friction. 154 edge gate. 113 blind holes. 7 annealing. 98 air-poppet valves. 103 beam bending. 9 crystallization. 154 automated assembly. 97 balanced flow. 61 drops. 155 bending moment. 130 cam pins. 74 Acme threads. 52 corrugations. 37 crowns. 9 artificially balanced runners. 105 burnt streaks. 84 cutting oils. 67 elastic modulus. 52 break point. 101 chemical exposure. 35. 146 creep properties. 156 collapsible cores. 125 design formulas. 140 die cutting. 8 diaphragm gates. 54. 139 clamp slots. 107 bearings.

152 impact.electroless process. 103. 42 KO sleeves. 117 latches. 104 EMI/RFI shielding. 132 isochronous stress-strain curve. 148 injection blow molding. 19. 53. 56. 109 mating edges. 127 energy directors. 149 electrostatic systems. 69 internally heated. 128 equivalent thickness. 103 hot-air remelting. 134 gloss differences. 13 mechanical fasteners. 118 externally heated. 76 manifold. 56 heat-curing systems. 164 markings. 104 hot stamping. 103. 79 hot-plate welding. 11 glue. 163 flow length. 149 Luer tubing connectors. 93 metallic coatings. 149 finger tabs. 37. 151 internal runners. 58 I masking. 36 film-insert molding. 84 hard coats. 149 flow control meters. 8 flow restrictors. 152 engineering strain. 140 knockout pins. 101 166 . 84 flow orientation. 21 labels. 22 interlocking edge. 145 hot-runner gates. 105 gates. 59. 89 gate size. 110 hot runner designs. 60 gate vestige. 140 hard chrome. 70 geometric tolerancing. 106 lifters. 40 fasteners. 112 G internal threads. 148 in-mold decorating. 22. 160 impact performance. 107 gas burn. 134 machining stresses. 50. 126 fatigue curves. 76 material discoloration. 85 logos. 163 long-term loads. 15 flexural modulus. 119 L extension press nozzles. 52 gate marks. 93 flow leaders. 35 fatigue data. 69 fillet radius. 147. 22 milling. 104 lost-core process. 119 laser. 124 fan gates. 9 fatigue. 86 F H leader pins. 149 M first-surface film decorating. 30 laser printing. 111 gas-assist molding. 118 manufacturing costs. 25. 108 flow channels. 73 filing. 55 elongation at yield. 58 high-gloss finishes. 15 fiber orientation. 25. 41 external threads. 14. 158 locating ring. 91 laser machining. 148 in-mold transfer decoration. 37 glass-bead blasting. 101 gate position. 13 gussets. 145 J end mills. 147 injection molding. 127 electroplating. 39 “filter-bowl” gate. 111 free-flowing gates. 78 hex holes. 88 hot runner systems. 104. 115 gate optimization. 153 flow hesitation. 128 equivalent-thickness factor (ETF). 15 flash chrome. 111 life expectancy. 71 gears. 144. 109 matte finish. 149 glossy finishes. 164 lettering. 20. 78 heat pipes. 102 extrusion blow molding. 102 extrusion. 84 lifter rails. 124 fatigue endurance. 97 flash. 145. 78 hardware. 151 K epoxies. 90 louvers. 10 mechanical loading. 111 hot sprue bushings. 147 “jiggler” pin. 159.

135 spin welding. 131 rivets. 69 scratches. 17 saw guides. 160 screws. 104 moment of inertia. 147. 109 safety factors. 43 scrapers. 104 mold-release coatings. 88. 27 side mills. 106 overflow wells. 111 radiation. 160 retention features. 34 parting-line vent. 85 orientation. 108 solvent bonding. 32. 136 sanding marks. 84 R second-surface film decorating. 21. 43 scraping. 59 Rockwell hardness. 136. 106 rework. 108 return pins. 163 plate deflection. 154. 101 part design checklist. 17 molded-in threads. 145. 116 N quick disconnects. 17 shrinkage. 105 S mold draft. 121 ribs. 152 sanding. 86. 53 runners. 103. 92 sharp corners. 125 parallel circuits. 153 secant modulus. 161 paints. 124 shear rate limits. 31 self-tapping screws. 164 prototype testing. 97 series circuits. 137. 105 rib design. 24 side-action slides. 67 P repair. 133 sandblasting. 163 mold cooling. 58 nesting features. 135 modified-tunnel gate. 164 press nozzle tip. 71. 24 skip-tooth blades. 37 PV factor. 158 recycling. 30 packing. 136 O radius-to-thickness ratio. 59 mold interlocks. 119 mold metals. 99 parting line. 95 permissible strain. 130 porous metal. 84. 33 plating racks. 169 rib size. 100 scrap. 92 shear modulus. 92 shape. 128 rib thickness. 135. 150 plating adhesion. 28 part ejection. 99 molded-in stress. 159 shrinkage analysis. INDEX continued mini-sprue gates. 119. 24. 91 pinpoint gates. 143 Poisson’s ratio. 148 punching. 130 powdered paint. 132 reaming. 103 mold release. 72 slides. 84 naturally balanced runners. 103 Q screening. 65. 65 paint curing. 134 mold base. 146 pad printing. 8 secondary-runner diameters. 85 photoetching. 84. 99 molded-in hinges. 161 sawing. 75 “round-bottomed” trapezoid. 49. 52 satin finishing. 130 primary-runner diameters. 91 167 . 144 rotomolding. 128 shear stress. 24. 94 reamers. 56 mold flexure. 160 paint soak. 135 mismatch. 107 Reynolds number. 158 rib location. 94. 84 slotted holes. 66 pad painting. 116 reverse-injection molds. 137 proportional limit. 113 runner thickness. 132 S-N curves. 104 multi-shell process. 84 prototype molds. 86. 13 spark erosion. 163 rolling. 101 semicrystalline plastics. 124 polishing. 88. 162 pressure gradient. 163 snap-fit joints. 153 polyurethane paints. 113 runner system. 61 PV limit. 103 mold-filling analysis. 26 sink.

spiral channels, 156 tapered drops, 139 unscrewing cores, 37
spiral flow data, 148 tapered pipe threads, 38 unscrewing mechanisms, 127
splay, 132 tapered threads, 38 use of moduli, 58
split cavities, 35 tapping, 99 UV-cured adhesives, 91
split cores, 35 temperature, 8
spoked runners, 137 tensile modulus, 49, 52, 58 V
spray painting, 107 tensile properties, 51 vacuum metallizing, 114
spraying, 107 tensile stress, 61 valve-gated hot runners, 151
spring-clip fasteners, 84 tensile stress at break, 52 vapor honing, 104
spring-loaded lifters, 126 tensile stress at yield, 52 vent channel, 132
sprue, 133 texture, 119, 163 vent designs, 36
sprue bushing, 124, 133 thermal conductivity, 155 vent placement, 131
sprue orifice, 133 thermal expansion, 80, 94, 151 vents, 130
sprue taper, 134 thermal isolation, 151 vibration welding, 90
sputter deposition, 114 thermal load, 80, 156 vinyls, 105
stack mold, 123 thermoforming, 12 viscoelasticity, 46
stainless steel, 162 thickness transitions, 21 voids, 21
static friction, 53 thin-wall molding, 20 Voight-Maxwell model, 46
steel-rule dies, 100 thin-walled parts, 20, 25, 129, 145, 148, 159 volatile organic compounds, 106
steel safe, 161 thread pitch, 38
stencil, 109 thread profiles, 37 W
stiffness, 46, 67 threaded inserts, 85 wall thickness, 19, 70
strain limits, 59 threads, 99 warpage, 25, 147, 154
stress concentration, 28, 30, 76, 79 three-plate mold, 122, 139 washers, 85
stress-concentration factor, 59 three-plate runners, 139 waterborne coatings, 106
stress limits, 59 tight-tolerance holes, 34 weather resistance, 8
stress relaxation, 47, 54, 56, 74, 75 tolerances, 40, 94 weld lines, 132, 147
stress-strain behavior, 48 tool steel, 162 welding, 88
stripper plates, 128 torsion, 66 wet sanding, 103
stripping undercuts, 34 trapped air, 132 wiping, 108
sublimation ink transfer, 117 tumbling, 104 witness marks, 129
sucker pins, 139, 142 tunnel gates, 141
surface appearance, 154 turbulent flow, 159 Y
surface contamination, 109 turning, 101 yield point, 52
surface-crowning, 113 two-component paint systems, 106 Young’s modulus, 49
surface treatments, 163 two-plate mold, 121
symmetry, 94
U
T ultimate strength, 53
tab gates, 140 ultrasonic welding, 89
tangent modulus, 52 undercuts, 34, 125

168

PART DESIGN CHECKLIST

For Injection-Molded Engineering Thermoplastics
Material Selection Requirements
Loads ■ Magnitude ■ Duration ■ Impact ■ Fatigue ■ Wear
Environment ■ Temperature ■ Chemicals ■ Humidity ■ Cleaning Agents
■ Lubricants ■ UV Light
Special ■ Transparency ■ Paintability ■ Plateability ■ Warpage/Shrinkage
■ Flammability ■ Cost ■ Agency Approval
Part Details Review
Radii ■ Sharp Corners ■ Ribs ■ Bosses ■ Lettering
Wall Thickness
Material ■ Strength ■ Electrical ■ Flammability
Flow ■ Flow Length ■ Too Thin ■ Avoid Thin to Thick
■ Picture Framing ■ Orientation
Uniformity ■ Thick Areas ■ Thin Areas ■ Abrupt Changes
Ribs ■ Radii ■ Draft ■ Height ■ Spacing
■ Base Thickness
Bosses ■ Radii ■ Draft ■ Inside Diameter/Outside Diameter
■ Base Thickness ■ Length/Diameter
Weld Lines ■ Proximity to Load ■ Strength vs. Load ■ Visual Area
Draft ■ Draw Polish ■ Texture Depth ■ 1/2 Degree (Minimum)
Tolerances ■ Part Geometry ■ Material ■ Tool Design (Across Parting Line, Slides)
Assembly Considerations
Press Fits ■ Tolerances ■ Hoop Stress ■ Long-Term Retention
Snap Fits ■ Allowable Strain ■ Assembly Force ■ Tapered Beam ■ Multiple Assembly
Screws ■ Thread-Cutting vs. Forming ■ Avoid Countersinks (Tapered Screw Heads)
Molded Threads ■ Avoid Feather Edges, Sharp Corners, and Pipe Threads
Ultrasonics ■ Energy Director ■ Shear Joint Interference
Adhesive and ■ Shear vs. Butt Joint Compatibility
Solvent Bonds ■ Trapped Vapors
General ■ Stack Tolerances ■ Assembly Tolerances ■ Care with Rivets and Molded-In Inserts
■ Thermal Expansion ■ Component Compatibility
Mold Concerns
Warpage ■ Cooling (Corners) ■ Ejector Placement
Gates ■ Type ■ Size ■ Location
Runners ■ Size and Shape ■ Sprue Size ■ Balanced Flow
■ Cold-Slug Well ■ Sharp Corners
General ■ Draft ■ Part Ejection ■ Avoid Thin/Long Cores

BAYER CORPORATION • 100 Bayer Road • Pittsburgh, PA 15205-9741 • Phone: (412) 777-2000
For further design assistance in using Bayer’s engineering thermoplastics, contact a field market development representative at a regional office near you.
USA Sales Offices:
CA: 9 Corporate Park Drive, Suite 240, Irvine, CA 92714-5113 • 1-949-833-2351 • Fax: 1-949-752-1306
MI: 2401 Walton Blvd., Auburn Hills, MI 48326-1957 • 1-248-475-7700 • 1-248-475-7701
NJ: 1000 Route 9 North, Suite 103, Woodbridge, NJ 07095-1200 • 1-732-726-8988 • Fax: 1-732-726-1672
IL: 9801 W. Higgins Road, Suite 420, Rosemont, IL 60018-4704 • 1-847-692-5560 • Fax: 1-847-692-7408
Canadian Affiliate:
Ontario: 77 Belfield Road, Etobicoke, Ontario M9W 1G6 • 1-416-248-0771 • Fax: 1-416-248-6762
Quebec: 7600 Trans Canada Highway, Pointe Claire, Quebec H9R 1C8 • 1-514-697-5550 • Fax: 1-514-697-5334

169

Radii Wall Uniformity

Avoid Avoid

Sharp

Prefer Prefer
R
.015 in
min.

Ribs Bosses

Avoid Avoid
Too Thick Too Close Too Too
Thin Tall
Tall Sharp

Prefer Thick
w Screw Lead-In Prefer
2w
2 3w
R Gussets
w

Draft Snap-Fit

Avoid Avoid
No Draft

Prefer Undercut
Prefer vs. Length
1/2° min. Draw Polish vs. Material
R

Shallow
Taper Lead-In
Screws Molded-In Threads

Avoid Avoid
Thread Forming
(Avoid for PC
and PC Blends)

Prefer Prefer
1/32 in
Lead-In
Thread Cutting

Picture Framing Warpage

Avoid Avoid
Ejector
Pins

Prefer Mold Prefer
Cooling

170

NOTES 171 .

Information is available in several forms. such as Material Safety Data Sheets and Product Labels. you must read and become familiar with available information con- cerning its hazards. proper use and handling. 100 Bayer Road. Before working with any product mentioned in this publication. 172 . This cannot be overemphasized. Pittsburgh. Bayer MaterialScience L L C. PA 15205 -9741.Health and Safety Information Appropriate literature has been assembled which provides information pertaining to the health and safety concerns that must be observed when handling Bayer prod- ucts. Consult your Bayer Representative or contact the Product Safety Manager for the Bayer MaterialScience within Bayer’s Corporate Occupational and Product Safety Department. (412) 777-2000. appropriate industrial hygiene and other safety precautions recommended by their manufacturer should be followed.

Etobicoke. Auburn Hills. it is imperative that you test our products. Quebec H9R 1C8 1-514-697-5550 • Fax: 1-514-697-5334 Note: The information contained in this bulletin is current as of April 2000. incurred in connection with the use of our prod- ucts. technical assistance and information (whether verbal. All information and technical assistance is given without warranty or guarantee and is subject to change without notice. Suite 103. written or by way of production evaluations). Rosemont. IL 60018-4704 1-847-692-5560 • Fax: 1-847-692-7408 Canadian Affiliate: Ontario: Bayer Inc. contract or otherwise. all products are sold strictly pursuant to the terms of our standard condi- tions of sale. Bayer Corporation 570 . KU-GE028 Copyright © 2000. NJ 07095-1200 1-732-726-8988 • Fax: 1-732-726-1672 Illinois: 9801 W. Woodbridge. Such testing has not necessarily been done by us. Suite 240. The manner in which you use and the purpose to which you put and utilize our products. technical assistance and information to determine to your own satisfaction whether they are suitable for your intended uses and applications. PA 15205-9741 • 1-800-622-6004 http://www. including any suggested formulations and recommendations are beyond our control. Please contact Bayer Corporation to determine whether this publication has been revised. Suite 420. No license is implied or in fact granted under the claims of any patent. Therefore. Irvine. and information. Bayer Corporation • 100 Bayer Road • Pittsburgh.com/polymers-usa Sales Offices: California: 9 Corporate Park Drive. Pointe Claire. safety. MI 48325-1957 1-248-475-7700 • Fax: 1-248-475-7701 New Jersey: 1000 Route 9 North. in tort. technical assistance.bayer. Unless we otherwise agree in writing. This application-specific analysis must at least include testing to determine suitability from a technical as well as health. CA 92506-5113 1-949-833-2351 • Fax: 1-949-752-1306 Michigan: 2401 Walton Boulevard. Any statement or recommendation not contained herein is unauthorized and shall not bind us. Nothing herein shall be construed as a recommendation to use any product in conflict with patents covering any material or its use. 7600 Trans Canada Highway. Ontario M9W 1G6 1-416-248-0771 • Fax: 1-416-248-6762 Quebec: Bayer Inc. 77 Belfield Road. It is expressly understood and agreed that you assume and hereby expressly release us from all liability. and environmental standpoint. Higgins Road.