SILICONE MOLDING. Contrary to popular opinion Liquid
Silicone Molding (L.S.M.) is not rocket-science!!
However it is distinctly different from thermoplastic injection
molding and also very different from molding conventional high
consistency silicone. For starters L.S.M.
is a reactive molding technology and the raw materials
also have low viscosity
at the molding temperature.
These two factors alone require
distinct processing disciplines,
systems and techniques
without which it is difficult to succeed. However once implemented
they can assure successful, sustainable
high yield L.S.M. operations. Crinnis can guarantee
to significantly shorten your learning
curve! We provide troubleshooting, manufacturing
know-how, complete turn-key systems,start-up assistance, and on-going
technical support including design assistance and sourcing
of LSR/ LIM tooling.
areas of support include the following:
EQUIPMENT SELECTION. What is the most appropriate metering/mixing,
and injection equipment for your particular needs? Which "bells
and whistles" are critical and which only add unnecessary expense?
Electric or hydraulic control of injection? Equipment suppliers
TOOLING SELECTION. Conventional (hot) runner or cold
runner? Pros and cons of direct (open) gate
or needle (valved) gates. Fully automatic/robotic parts removal.
LSR/LIM tooling sources.Flashless tooling.
MATERIAL SELECTION. Effects of part design and tooling choice
on material selection.Material suppliers and capabilities
FLEXIBLE MANUFACTURING SYSTEMS. How to optimise
cost-effectively for high volume/
fully automated production or low volume production with
frequent tool or material changes.
IN-PLANT TROUBLESHOOTING AND PROCESS OPTIMISATION. Identify
and evaluate key machine variables and their relationships to
product properties and process yields. Optimise
process windows for molding products.
EMPLOYEE TRAINING. Teach key differences between LIM/LSR molding
and thermoplastic molding or high consistency rubber (HCR) molding.
LSR machine set-up, tooling prove out. How to establish realistic
process windows and optimise product quality and process yields.
NEW PROCESS DEVELOPMENT/TOOLING EVALUATIONS. We can help in
your new product and process development programs and, if necessary,will
participate under appropriate"Non- Disclosure Agreements" to
assure complete confidentiality. We have the latest all-electric
LSR injection molding machine (110 Ton) available for your next
process development program or tooling evaluation/prove-out
TURN-KEY SYSTEM DEVELOPMENT .If clients prefer, we can develop,
optimise,and deliver full turn-key systems (machines,
tooling, material selection, and cycle optimisation) to guarantee
efficient troublefree implementation and manufacturability of
parts in your plant.
KEYPADS. We have extensive turn-key technology for rubber
keypad production using liquid silicone
molding and over-molding processes. This includes
material and equipment recommendations together with operating
know-how and assistance for all post molding operations such as
screen printing, painting and laser etching, legend protection,
and bonding to plastic keycaps.
GELS. Use of elastomeric
gels is growing rapidly in areas such as sports
and recreation,ergonomics,orthopedics,adult-novelty products /
sex toys, personal comfort, medical pads,seat pads,pressure relief
pads for the foot,knee, elbow,wrist,etc..We can help from concept
to full production either in a consulting capacity or with custom
manufacturing services in the area of elastomeric
gels. Our expertise includes product
know-how and production
capabilities for both thermoset
and thermoplastic based
elastomer gels either
as stand alone gels or combined with other materials (stretch
fabrics; films; plastic and metal parts; and tough,
elastic paints and
OR ELASTOMER GEL SELECTION CRITERIA. The following considerations
and areas of Crinnis expertise in soft-polymer and elastomer
gel systems may be helpful to you when evaluating product and
gels can be formulated from a variety of base polymer materials
including thermoset elastomers such as silicones and polyurethanes,
and thermoplastic polymers typically including thermoplastic
elastomers (TPE), and plasticized vinyl polymers. Selection
of the best polymer-gel formulations for your particular application
depends primarily upon the physical properties and performance
requirements of the finished soft polymer product and/or the
processing methods available or appropriate.
provides support in the following critical areas, all of which
need to be considered before deciding upon the best solution
to your product and process needs.
PROPERTY REQUIREMENTS. Which of the following physical properties
are important ?
tactile properties such as durometer, or bloom
b) resilience. i.e. do
you need “bounce” or are you looking for “dead”
gel properties such as those optimized to minimize skin-shear
and pressure points in seating or patient-positioning systems
c) properties such as surface tack
i.e. do you need the gel to adhere strongly to a laminated
substrate or enveloping bladder or do you need a non-tacky
surface for a stand-alone gel suitable for human handling
or skin contact
d) creep resistance, effect of temperature
on cohesive strength, deformation under load, etc.
These requirements will generally dictate whether thermoset
or thermoplastic elastic gels can be used
e) resistance to bleed-out
. Most soft polymer gels are dilute
networks formulated from extensible/elastic polymers which
form the polymer network extended with liquid diluents to
reduce cost, improve processability, reduce hardness or improve
conformability. Depending upon the specific combination
of diluents and polymers used, together with their relative
compatibilities and chemical make-up, diluents
can leech out or “bleed” from the gel network.
This is the case even in gels in a stand alone condition,
without surface contact with any other surface material. Alternatively,
diluents can show no tendency to bleed from the gel ( i.e.
have a “dry-feel” surface) until they are brought
into contact with other materials such as fabrics, paper etc.
when the diluent can be “wicked-out” of the elastomer
gel over time (i.e. known as the “french-fry”
effect ) causing “staining or water-marking” of
the contact fabric or paper. Bleed-out or wicking characteristics
of elastomer gels are not always detrimental properties and
in fact can be precisely tailored to meet specific requirements.
Examples where this would be beneficial would be in the production
of self-lubricating materials.
REQUIREMENTS. Typical considerations include the following:
are one-time-use, reactive-thermoset elastomeric gels best
suited for your application or can thermoplastic
gels facilitating reuse of scrap and/or thermal sealing techniques
b) what is the best metering system
for reactive gels or the most practical, cost-effective
melt processing equipment for hot-melt gels to
meet your needs. Is off-the-shelf equipment available and
if so, how do you correctly specify performance requirements?
c) If off-the-shelf equipment is not available, or even if
available, would a turn-key customized
system be more cost effective in the long run?
All Crinnis turn-key system equipment
is proved-out in our facility in the same manufacturing
cell configuration and under the same manufacturing conditions
with the clients’ own molds,
dies, etc. prior to delivery and installation in
the clients’ factory. If required, Crinnis
will also provide ramp-up
production capability on an interim basis prior
to installation of equipment in the clients’ plant.
REQUIREMENTS & SOURCES. Closed-tool molding or open-pour
casting techniques can be satisfied using a variety of tooling
materials including elastomer molds, fiberglass, and rigid thermoset
resin tooling. Metal tooling options include cast
or machined metal tooling, spray-metal and electroform-metal
tooling. We can incorporate any of the above options
into a fully turn-key molding system.
MOLD FINISHING. We have developed flexible
elastomeric paints and surface coatings to provide
aesthetic decoration, abuse resistance or barriers to diluent
bleed. Paint and coating formulations
can be applied by brush, dipping and spray techniques.
and bonding techniques of thermoset and thermoplastic
elastomer gels to various substrates
such as fabrics, non-woven webs and films have been
developed and perfected.
AND PRODUCTION SERVICES
you currently use or are considering applications for elastomeric
gel products and are looking to source production, or simply
want to evaluate or prototype a concept,you can contact us with
complete assurance of confidentiality.