When you see a smooth-looking finish on an industrial panel or on the blades of an air turbine, there is a good chance gas assist molding was used to manufacture this product. Many products we use every day require a brighter, smoother finish that will help enhance its performance, and gas assist molding achieves that every time. Through this process, nitrogen gas hollows out thick wall sections in a molded product. Then by combining air pressure with heat, the process creates a strong, robust part with a perfectly smooth finish.
DeKALB Molded Plastics delivers aesthetically pleasing, high-quality products for your industry with the help of gas assist molding. There is no room for error in the work we do, which is why all our products made with gas assist molding are flawless and functional.
What is Gas Assist Molding?
Gas assist molding is a highly technical type of injection molding that reaches beyond traditional design capabilities and processing limitations. This type of injection molding produces large plastic parts with complex designs. DeKALB Molded Plastics manufactures products through gas assist injection molding that makes life a little better and safer.
The high-speed, low-pressure injection method that DeKALB Molded Plastics uses in production is a competitive advantage. We utilize Milacron LPIM-Structural Web and Bauer Gas Assist technologies in our gas assist molding processes.
How Gas Assist Molding Works
Like standard injection molding, the process begins when a molding machine injects a short shot of resin into the mold. Then, just as the name suggests, high-pressure nitrogen gas is injected into the melt stream following the resin injection to assist. The nitrogen displaces the resin in flow or gas channels within thicker sections of the molded product. The end product will be hollow and have thick wall sections without sink marks or the swirl appearance typically characteristic of structural foam.
The flow path of the nitrogen gas depends on the resin flow in the cavity. Resin flow is determined by the volume and viscosity of the resin, not the nitrogen gas injection. Most thermoplastic materials can be used in gas assist molding.
What is Necessary for Success
In gas assist molding, the mold design and construction must be done correctly by experienced engineering and design teams. It is vital to have a shot control on the injection-molding machine that is both repeatable and accurate. Furthermore, the precision of time and pressure is necessary for achieving desired results with this technology. DeKALB Molded Plastics takes away any stress connected to these factors as we have the premier technology, tooling, and expertise to get the job done right.
Benefits of Gas Assist Molding
With less plastic material needed to produce the part, because the hollow areas are created with nitrogen gas rather than resin, gas assist molding can be a greener solution. The process of gas assist often allows for the consolidation of multiple parts into one. The process reduces or eliminates any need for secondary assembly processes. Additionally, with less clamping force required and a reduced amount of components under stress, gas assist molding can produce higher volumes with less frequent mold maintenance or repairs.
Gas assist molding has many other benefits, including:
- The product will be lightweight while still being strong and firm. The nitrogen gas can form hollowed-out areas within parts (such as steering wheels, handles, etc.).
- Gas assist injection molding produces more aesthetically pleasing parts. There is a reduced risk of flaws, sink marks, and shrinking with this technology.
- When compared to standard injection molding, gas assist reduces cooling and overall cycle time.
- Gas assist injection molding is an easy way to convert existing large metal parts to plastic, providing a better quality alternative.
Is Gas Assist Molding Right for You?
There are numerous benefits to gas assist injection molding as an alternative to various molding disciplines, including injection molding, rotational molding, blow molding, SMC, BMC, and die cast. If the product you need has a complex design, thick geometry, or both, gas assist molding is a great option to consider.
The DeKALB Difference
DeKALB Molded Plastics has earned its best-in-class quality reputation in the structural plastics industry. We are committed to solutions, and we manufacture products that make a difference. DeKALB provides large, high-quality components with value-add options such as painting, fabricating, assembly and more. Our highly skilled team trains to produce quality molded plastics every time.
At DeKALB Molded Plastics, we’re committed to your goals. Ready to start the conversation? Contact us today to learn more.