Plastic Mouldings – What are they?
What is Plastic Moulding?
Plastic moulding simply means moulding of the plastic. There are several ways to mould plastic and these moulds come in all shapes and sizes. From plastic bottles to various car parts, plastic mouldings are everywhere.
What does a plastic moulder do?
A plastic moulder is a person or a piece of equipment that actually moulds the plastic to give it form and shape. Equipment used and the cost of production can vary greatly depending on which moulding technique is used.
Some types of plastic moulding
There are several ways to mould plastic. Some of them include:
This is where the plastic is melted and poured into a mould and allowed to set. Once set, the mould is removed to reveal the item. This is the way most mass-produced plastic items such as toys are produced as it is an affordable way to produce plastic items.
This is when hot liquid plastic is poured into a tube. The mould closes around it and forces the hot liquid plastic into the shape of the mould. Tubes, containers, and bottles are made this way.
This is when pieces of hard plastic are squeezed between moulds that are heated and then left to cool down.
Film Insert Moulding
This is when an image, a piece of fabric, a piece of film or something similar is inserted into the mould which has plastic injected into it so that the image is embedded into the plastic item.
Moulded plastic items
Moulded plastic items are used in everyday life and can vary in size and type. Children’s toys are often made of moulded plastic, as are other mass produced items such as jars, plastic containers, crates, and bottles. Small items like key-rings and large items like car parts are all produced using plastic moulding techniques.
Everything You Need to Know About Plastic Injection Molding
Procedure of Plastic Molding
Basically, plastic molding involves three processes; namely clamping and injection, solidifying, and ejection. The first step consists of clamping the plastic resins onto secure aluminum or steel mold cavities, heating and mixing the material, and injecting (forcing) the material into the mold cavities.
After the injection and heating processes, the material is allowed to cool and solidify in configuration with the features of the desired design. An engineer or industrial designer designs the cavity or the wanted part.
Once the material solidifies sufficiently, the mold opens and pushes out the hardened part. This is done automatically, following the dry cycle times, as stipulated in the machine settings.
How Plastics Can Be Part Of a Clean Environment
There is no question that plastics have played a huge part in environmental degradation, however, the removal of once good polymers is not a viable solution to environmental problems. Polymer removal is a short-sighted argument because proper use of plastics would actually all kinds of products good for the environment.
Plastics themselves are not environmental hazards. Instead, it is the Improper use of plastics that pose the greatest environmental threat. Plastics can actually be part of the ongoing global push for environmental reclamation and conservation.
Durability is one of the qualities that make plastics so popular. This can be exploited for a more sustainable environment. For example, plastic containers and other equipment do not wear out quickly meaning that continuous production is not necessary in this day and age. Plastic can become a sustainable raw material. It has the potential to reduce pressure on other materials like trees that are used to produce bio-degradable items despite their importance in the natural environment.
Blame is often attributed to plastic for becoming litter, but aren’t users to blame for disposing of plastic items after just a single use? Items that can be reused in multiple ways often become litter.
Reducing disposal and increasing re-use will go a long way in making plastic an environmentally friendly material.
Plastic molding consumes less energy than other manufactured materials that are considered less hazardous. This demonstrates that plastics can be part of a sustainable solution.
Molders need to embrace energy efficiency when completing bulk production. Regulations should limit the number of plastic molders in operation. They should be encouraged to exploit their full capacity and efficient production.
Molders need to give priority to plastic designs with multiple uses. Plastic bags, should be designed in such a way that they can be used as attractive garden containers.
Plastic items should find their way back to factories for recycling plastics. Molders need to formulate recycling policies for plastic use.
The status of plastic is ‘environmentally unfriendly’. However, thinking of plastic in light of better manufacturing and recycling practices makes plastic sustainable.