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Equivalent Thickness

When a thermoplastics is specified as a

replacement for another material, the new

part often needs to have the same stiffness

as the old one

Deflection is proportional to 1/E*I

E is modulus

I is moment of inertia

I is proportional to thickness

3

Equivalent Thickness

Equivalent Thickness

Equivalent Thickness

Equivalent Thickness

Calculate the thickness

of a part that when

made of polycarbonate

will have the same

deflection as a

0.75mm thick

aluminum part at

73deg using moduli of

the two materials

Equivalent Thickness

Calculate the thickness

of a part that when

made of polycarbonate

will have the same

deflection as a

0.75mm thick

aluminum part at

73deg using thickness

conversion factors

Thermal Stress

Thermal expansion and contraction are important

considerations in plastic design

Expansion-contraction problems often arise when

two parts made of different materials having

different coefficients of thermal expansion are

assembled at temperatures other than the end use

temperature

When the assembled part goes into service in the

end use environment, the materials react

differently, resulting in thermal stress

Thermal Stress

Thermal Stress can be calculated by:

Thermal Stress

Thermal Stress

Thermal Stress

E = 300,000 psi for polycarbonate

= 1000 psi

E

Beam Analysis

Alternate designs for park bench seat members

Example of the method a designer will use to

estimate bending stress, strain and deflections

Material is recycled polyolefin

Design for two people, 220lbs each, for 8 hours

per day

10 year service life

Beam Analysis

Beam Analysis

Plastics have the advantage of durability, through

coloring and design flexibility

Plastics have the disadvantage of relatively low

modulus values, particularly at elevated

temperatures

Designer must estimate the maximum stress and

deflection for each of the proposed designs

Failure could result in personal injury

Creep must be consider in the long term

application

Beam Analysis

Beam Analysis

Support

The planks are beams resting on the bench

supports that have an unsupported length of 48

inches

Support conditions at both ends exhibit

characteristics of both simple and fixed

supports

A beam with simple supports represents the

worst case for maximum possible mid-span

stress and deflection

Beam Analysis

Loading conditions

Bench is loaded and unloaded periodically, not

continuous

Loading is intermittent rather than fatigue

Loads are static

Weight of the beam is of concern, due to creep

Assume 2 people, 220 lbs each, for 8 hour per

day distributed over the length of one beam

Beam Analysis

Loading conditions

Full recovery is assumed to occur overnight

The size of the continuous, uniformly

distributed load, due to the weight of the beam

must be determined

The deflection and stresses resulting from the

intermittent external load are superimposed on

the continuous uniformly distributed load

caused by the weight of the beam

Beam Analysis

Beam Analysis

Equations

Generalized equations for a

beam with partially

distributed loads and simple

supports are

At L/2

L length in inches

C distrance from the

neutral axis to surface

W is load in lbs/in

E is the materials modulus

I moment of inertia, in

4

M the bending moment,

I E

L w

y

L w

M

I

c M

m

m

m

m

* * 384

* * 5

8

*

*

4

2

Beam Analysis

Service Environment

Used outdoors throughout the year

Used in various climates

Contacts various cleaners

Maximum service temperature is assumed to be

100F

Service life is ten years

Beam Analysis

Material Properties

In this application, the planks are loaded for

extended periods of time and creep effects must

be taken into account

The appropriate creep modulus is used in the

maximum deflection equation

The deflection and stress are due to both the

beam weight and the external load

Beam Analysis

Material Properties

Maximum deflection will occur at the end of

the service life, 10 years, due to internal loading

E = 2.5 x 10

5

psi

Maximum deflection will occur after 8 hours of

continuous loading due to the external load

E = 3 x 10

5

psi

Beam Analysis

Beam Analysis

Beam Analysis

The external loading, uniformly distributed due to

the weight of the two adults is the same for all

four cases

w

e

= 2*220lbs/48 inches = 9.17 lbs/in

The internal load change in each case

w

i

= density*volume/length

Solid = 0.46 lbs/in

Hollow = 0.22 lbs/in

Rib = 0.28 lbs/in

Foam = 0.37 lbs/in

Beam Analysis

Beam Analysis

Beam Analysis

inches y

in in y

y

y

y y y

T m

T m

i m

e m

i m e m T m

325 . 1

) 075 . 0 ( ) 25 . 1 (

) 69 . 1 )( 000 , 250 )( 384 (

) 48 )( 46 . 0 )( 5 (

) 69 . 1 )( 000 , 300 )( 384 (

) 48 )( 2 . 9 )( 5 (

n Calculatio n Deflectio Maximum

,

,

4

,

4

,

, , ,

Beam Analysis

2 2 2

,

2

,

2

,

2

,

2

,

, , ,

2

1230 6 . 58 1170

69 . 1

75 . 0

*

8

) 48 * 46 . 0 (

*

8

) * (

69 . 1

75 . 0

*

8

) 48 * 2 . 9 (

*

8

) * (

*

8

) * (

n Calculatio Stress Maximum

in

lbs

in

lbs

in

lbs

I

c L w

I

c L w

I

c M L w

M

T m

i m

i

i m

e m

e

e m

i m e m T m

m

m m

Beam Analysis

Beam Analysis

Comparisons

Solid is lowest in stress and deflection, but the material

and manufacturing costs are excessive and quality

problems with voids and sink marks

Hollow offers a 50% material savings, but only a

26% increase in deflection and 28% increase in

stress

Rib offers a 38% material savings and a 41% increase

in deflection and 59% increase in stresses

Foam offers a 20% material savings and 28% increase

in deflection and 29% increase in stresses

Living Hinge

Living Hinge

A living hinge is a thin flexible web of material

that joins two rigid bodies together.

A properly designed hinge molded out of the

correct material will never fail.

Long-life hinges are made from polypropylene or

polyethylene.

If the hinge is not expected to last forever,

engineering resins like nylon and acetal can be

used.

Figure: This polypropylene package for baby wipes utilizes a

living hinge.

Living Hinge

Before designing a living hinge, it is important to

understand how the physical properties relate to

the hinge design calculations.

There are three types of hinges:

a fully elastic hinge, capable of flexing several

thousand cycles

a fully plastic hinge, capable of flexing only a few

cycles

and a combination of plastic elastic, capable of flexing

hundreds of times

Living Hinge

Stress / Strain Curve

Strain

S

t

r

e

s

s

Elastic Limit

Plastic Region

Plastic will not recover its original shape. A

living hinge designed in this region will not last

long.

Elastic Region

Plastic will recover its original shape.

Long life hinges are designed in this

region.

Ultimate (breaking) Strength

Yield Stress

Initial Modulus

Secant Modulus at Yield

Figure 1: Typical stress/strain curve for metals and some plastics.

Living Hinge

When a living hinge is flexed, the hinge's plastic

fibers are stretched a certain amount, depending

on its design. The amount of stretch is the crucial

factor determining hinge life.

To design a fully elastic hinge, the hinge's

maximum strain must be in the elastic region of

the curve; the plastic will fully recover its shape

after a flex, and should last for many flexes.

A plastic hinge design that experiences strain in

the plastic region, will see permanent deformation,

and will last only a few flexes.

Living Hinge

Figure 2: Dimensions for a 180 polypropylene and polyethylene

living hinge.

Figure 3: Dimensions for a right angle hinge.

Living Hinge

Hinges designed for polypropylene and

polyethylene should follow dimensional

guidelines to create a fully elastic hinge that

will last forever.

Figure 2 shows some general dimensions for a

properly designed living hinge.

Figure 3 shows dimensions for a right angle

hinge

Living Hinge

Figure 4: This is an example of a poorly

designed hinge with no recess. When bent, the

absence of a recess creates a notch.

Figure 5: The recess on top of the hinge

eliminates the notch when it is folded.

Living Hinge

The two major features of a living hinge are the

recess on the top and the generous radius on the

bottom.

Figures 4 and 5 show the purpose of the recess.

Many hinges are designed without a recess; as a result,

when the hinge is bent 180, a notch is formed. This

hinge design creates greater stress in the web, and the

notch acts as a stress concentrator. Hinges designed

this way will not last long.

Figure 5 shows that with a recess, the notch is

eliminated, and the web is able to fold over easier.

Living Hinge

The large radius on the bottom of hinge helps

orient the polymer molecules as they pass through

the hinge.

Molecular orientation gives the hinge its strength

and long life.

Commonly, immediately after a hinge part is

molded, the operator or a machine will flex the

hinge a few quick times to orient the molecules

while the part is still warm.

Living Hinge

The hinge dimensions for polyethylene and

polypropylene are based on the materials'

properties, including modulus, yield stress, yield

strain, ultimate stress, and ultimate strain.

Because other resins' properties vary widely,

living hinge dimensions must be calculated for

each particular resin.

Figure 6 shows the dimensions that will be used in

the calculations.

Living Hinge

Basically, the calculations find the maximum

strain in the hinge and compare it to the material

properties.

If the strain is below the elastic limit, the hinge

will survive.

If the strain is in the plastic region, the hinge will

last a few cycles.

If the strain is the past the breaking point, the

hinge will fail.

Living Hinge

Several simplifying assumptions are made,

and tests have shown the assumptions are

sound.

1) The hinge bends in a circle and the neutral

axis coincides with the longitudinal hinge axis.

2) The outer fiber is under maximum tension;

the inner fiber is under maximum compression.

3) When the tension stress reaches the yield

point, the hinge will fail by the design criteria.

Living Hinge

Refer to Figure 6.

L

1

= R (the perimeter

of semicircle).

L

0

= (R + t)

Figure 6

L

1

:Length of the hinge's neutral axis

t:Half the hinge's thickness

l:Hinge recess

R:Hinge radius

L

0

:Length of the hinge's outer fibers

1

1 0

bending

L

L - L

Living Hinge

Figure 6

L

1

:Length of the hinge's neutral axis

t:Half the hinge's thickness

l:Hinge recess

R:Hinge radius

L

0

:Length of the hinge's outer fibers

bending

yield secant,

1

E t

L

bending

1

t

L

Living Hinge

Elastic Hinge

In a fully elastic hinge design,

bending

must be less than

yield

and

bending

must be less than

yield

.

Failure occurs when

bending =

yield

and when

bending

=

yield

.

Either equation can be used, depending on

whether yield stress or strain is known.

Living Hinge

To use the equations, find the yield strain (

yield

),

or the yield stress (

yield

) and secant modulus at

yield (E

secant, yield

).

Substituting these values into the equations will

result in the lowest value of L

1

that will yield an

elastic hinge.

Either the hinge thickness or its length must be

known as well.

Generally, a minimum processing thickness is

selected, ranging from 0.008" to 0.015", and then

a length is calculated.

Living Hinge

Figure 6

L

1

:Length of the hinge's neutral axis

t:Half the hinge's thickness

l:Hinge recess

R:Hinge radius

L

0

:Length of the hinge's outer fibers

Figure 7: Hinge dimensions for

calculations

Living Hinge

Plastic Hinge:

A plastic hinge will only last a few cycles.

Cracks will probably start on the first flex.

Calculations for a plastic hinge are the same as those of

for an elastic hinge, except

ultimate

and

ultimate

are used.

ultimate

1

t

L

ultimate

strength ultimate secant,

1

E t

L

Living Hinge

Processing Conditions

The key to living hinge life is to have the polymer

chains oriented perpendicular to the hinge as they cross

it.

As stated earlier, parts are generally flexed a few times

immediately after molding to draw and further orient

the hinge molecules.

Another important factor in determining orientation is

gate location.

It is crucial to maintain a flow front as parallel to the living

hinge as possible.

Living Hinge

Figure 9: An example of a poorly gated part.

Living Hinge

Example of a properly gated

part. A wide flash gate is

placed on one end to create a

flat flow front when the plastic

reaches the hinge.

This results in even flow over

the hinge, and provides proper

orientation direction.

Locating a gate at the center of

one end of the part would be

another suitable gate location.

Figure 10: A properly gated hinged part.

Living Hinge

Material: Hoechst Celanese

Acetal Copolymer, Grade TX90

Unfilled High Impact

Tensile Strength at Yield: 45

MPa

Elongation at Yield: 15%

2t (hinge thickness) = 0.012"

l (hinge recess) = 0.010"

This is a 180 hinge.

Find the minimum hinge length

for a fully elastic hinge.

Living Hinge

For a fully elastic

hinge, the minimum

hinge length is

calculated using

L

1

= (t) /

yield

L

1

= (0.006"*3.14159)

/ 0.15

L

1

= 0.126" for a

fully elastic hinge

Living Hinge

Material: Dupont Zytel 101 NC010 Nylon 66, Unfilled

Tensile Strength at Yield: 83 MPa

Elongation at Yield: 5%

Elongation at Break: 60%

2t (hinge thickness) = 0.012"

l (hinge recess) = .010"

This hinge only has to bend 90.

Find the minimum hinge length for a fully elastic design.

Living Hinge

Since the bend is 90, can be substituted with

/2 (this can be found from the previous

derivation).

L

1

= (t/2) /

yield

L

1

= (0.006"*3.14159*0.5) / 0.05

L

1

= 0.188"

For a 180 bend, L

1

would need to be 0.376".

This is probably not moldable.

Even 0.188" may be difficult to mold.

Snap Fits

Snap Fit

Snap fits are the simplest, quickest and most cost

effective method of assembling two parts

When designed properly, parts with snap-fits can

be assembled and disassembled numerous times

without any adverse effect on the assembly.

Snap-fits are also the most environmentally

friendly form of assembly because of their ease of

disassembly, making components of different

materials easy to recycle.

Snap Fit

Snap Fit

Most engineering material

applications with snap-fits

use the cantilever design

Other types of snap-fits

which can be used are the

U or L shaped

cantilever snaps

These are used when the

strain of the straight

cantilever snap cannot be

designed below the

allowable strain for the

given material

Snap Fit

A typical snap-fit

assembly consists of a

cantilever beam with

an overhang at the end

of the beam

The depth of the

overhang defines the

amount of deflection

during assembly.

Snap Fit

The overhang typically has a

gentle ramp on the entrance

side and a sharper angle on the

retraction side.

The small angle at the entrance

side () helps to reduce the

assembly effort, while the sharp

angle at the retraction side ()

makes disassembly very

difficult or impossible

depending on the intended

function.

Both the assembly and

disassembly force can be

optimized by modifying the

angles mentioned above.

Snap Fit

The main design consideration of a snap-fit is

integrity of the assembly and strength of the beam.

The integrity of the assembly is controlled by the

stiffness (k) of the beam and the amount of

deflection required for assembly or disassembly.

Rigidity can be increased either by using a higher

modulus material (E) or by increasing the cross

sectional moment of inertia (I) of the beam.

The product of these two parameters (EI) will

determine the total rigidity of a given beam length.

Snap Fit

The integrity of the assembly can also be

improved by increasing the overhang depth.

As a result, the beam has to deflect further and,

therefore, requires a greater effort to clear the

overhang from the interlocking hook.

However, as the beam deflection increases, the

beam stress also increases.

This will result in a failure if the beam stress is

above the yield strength of the material.

Snap Fit

Thus, the deflection must be optimized with

respect to the yield strength or strain of the

material.

This is achieved by optimizing the beam

section geometry to ensure that the desired

deflection can be reached without exceeding

the strength or strain limit of the material.

Snap Fit

The assembly and disassembly force will increase

with both stiffness (k) and maximum deflection of

the beam (Y).

The force (P) required to deflect the beam is

proportional to the product of the two factors:

P= kY

The stiffness value (k) depends on beam geometry

Snap Fit

Stress or strain is induced by the deflection

(Y)

The calculated stress or strain value should

be less than the yield strength or the yield

strain of the material in order to prevent

failure

Snap Fit

Cantilever beam:

deflection-strain

formulas

Snap Fit

Cantilever beam:

deflection-strain

formulas

Snap Fit

Cantilever beam:

deflection-strain

formulas

Snap Fit

The cantilever beam formulas used in

conventional snap-fit design underestimate the

amount of strain at the beam/wall interface

because they do not include the deformation in the

wall itself.

Instead, they assume the wall to be completely

rigid with the deflection occurring only in the

beam.

This assumption may be valid when the ratio of

beam length to thickness is greater than about

10:1.

Snap Fit

However, to obtain a more accurate

prediction of total allowable deflection and

strain for short beams, a magnification

factor should be applied to the conventional

formula.

This will enable greater flexibility in the

design while taking full advantage of the

strain-carrying capability of the material.

Snap Fit

A method for estimating these deflection

magnification factors for various snap-fit

beam/wall configurations has been developed

The results of this technique, which have been

verified both by finite element analysis and actual

part testing, are shown graphically

Also shown are similar results for beams of

tapered cross section (beam thickness decreasing

by 1/2 at the tip).

Snap Fit

Determine:

The maximum

deflection of snap

The mating force

Snap Fit

The maximum deflection of snap

Snap Fit

The mating force

Snap Fit

Is this type of snap fit

acceptable for nylon

6?

Snap Fit

Solution

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