MoldMaking Technology

AUG 2018

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NPE2018 Post Show Highlights 32 MoldMaking Technology —— AUGUST 2018 M.R. Mold was one participant in a collaborative demonstra- tion that produced a headlamp optic. Zeiger Industries molded an automotive LED headlamp optic made from Dow's Dowsil MS-4007 moldable silicone on a Milacron-FANUC Roboshot a-S55iA with its new iHMI Controller. Zeiger's Plug-n-Play Conversion Kit incorporated a Wexco 777 water-cooled barrel, a Zpringlok LSR pre-closed check-ring valve, a ZSAR PM zero- compression ratio screw, liquid silicone rubber (LSR) screw and proprietary barrel and screw sealing device. M.R. Mold's two- cavity, LSR, fully automatic mold, which incorporated a single- drop cold runner system, ran in the production cell comprising an ELMET TOP 5000P dosing system and a Thermal Care air-cooled EQ3A01 portable chiller. A Yushin YC-100S-11-8 robot with an E-Touch Compact controller, a custom engineered end- of-arm tool and a Yushin indexing conveyor enabled the cell to run fully automatic. Sigmasoft provided a virtual molding simu- lation of the filling and curing process. M.R. Mold also partnered with R.D. Abbott Co., a full- service elastomers supplier, which showcased a Liquid Additive Manufacturing (LAM) 3D printer in the booth. R.D. Abbott Co. developed this LAM 3D printer in collaboration with German RepRap GmbH and Dow Silicones. German RepRap's LAM platform combined with Dow's 3D Printable EVOLV3D LC 3335 LSR is potentially capable of printing functional prototypes and enables small manufacturing trials of complex parts. Also, the material's properties closely match those of molded LSR, facilitating an easy transfer into injection-mold- ing processes for high-volume manufacturing. M.R. Mold was one participant in a collaborative demonstration producing this headlamp optic. Mold builders strive to achieve 100-percent straight parts on any mold build, but the many dynamic process variables make this a challenge. For example, most people in the mold building arena try to mold pipette syringes, or deep-draw parts, with a single side gate. However, this puts stress on the core pin, which causes deflection. Others use unconventional methods to fine-tune the mold to produce parts to specifica- tion, but this may require stressing the core steel in a way that causes premature wear to the molding components. Basically, unless a mold builder uses a perfectly balanced hot runner sys- tem, the process will not yield 100-percent straight parts. Cavaform decided to take on the challenge of developing a better solution. Its engineering team developed a double side- gated hot runner concept using a balanced manifold that fills each part through two gates. The gates fill the cavity simulta- neously, creating a uniform flow front as each part is filled. At NPE2018, Cavaform partnered with Wittmann Battenfeld to run its (patent-pending) eight-cavity, 1000-ul pipette mold in a EcoPower 110 press to successfully mold a straight pipette. The mold's two, balanced, hot side gates prevent core-pin deflection by providing equal pressure on both sides. A balanced multi-tip melt distributor designed for high-production molds, like this 1000-ul pipette tool from Cavaform, improved cycle times, produced straighter parts and reduced maintenance time.

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