Nylon custom cast parts are made by a process in which liquid monomer is directly polymerised into nylon polymer in a mould. Custom casting can produce parts of virtually unlimited size and thickness whilst retaining internal soundness. Custom casting offers a manufacturing alternative that bridges the plastic fabrication methods of machining from stock shapes and injection moulding of thermoplastic parts. It is an ideal manufacturing method for small and medium quantity productions on parts that are either too large or too expensive to injection mould.
Benefits of Custom Casting
Custom casting offers many benefits compared to machining stock shapes and injection moulding:
- Ability to manufacture small or medium quantity production series
- Ability to manufacture large parts
- Reduction or even elimination of machining operations
- Improved product performance
- Scrap reduction
- Special formulations possible
- Materials savings up to 40% are possible
- Costly machining time can be avoided
- Better mechanical properties can be achieved
- Customer logos and special markings are possible
- Heavier products possible
- Lower tool investments
- Variations in wall thickness and heavy cross-sections possible
Compared to machining stock shapes, custom casting offers the advantages of special formulations, material savings, avoidance of costly machining time, better mechanical properties and even customer logos and special markings. This manufacturing process is also able to produce heavier products (max. 200kgs/piece) and variations in wall thickness and heavy cross-sections, with lower tool investment compared to injection moulding.
Types of Custom Casting
There are 3 types of custom casting technologies:
1. Atmospheric Pressure Casting (APC)
APC is a process used to produce parts without externally applied pressure and is suitable for low to medium volume runs or even parts that might have intricate design details. This casting technology allows for larger cross sections and minimises flow-induced stress which results in improved dimensional stability during use, with parts less likely to distort or change shape.
2. Low Pressure Casting (LPC)
In addition to parts similar to those made by APC, LPC allows the production of big parts with thinner sections and a more complicated shape. Economical production runs are 100-300 pieces.
3. Reaction Injection Moulding (RIM)
RIM is a low-pressure casting technology where specific additives are mixed with the base material to show very specific properties. RIM casting is a perfect production technology for a wide range of products with different shapes and properties.
Custom Casting Options
There are 3 types of custom casting options to choose from:
1. Custom Mill Shape
Custom sizes of tod, sheets or tubes.
2. Near Net Shapes
Castings close to finish dimensions, supplied sufficiently over size for finish machining.
3. Cast to Size
Castings the part to complete or nearly finished dimensions, Parts may require no machining, or machining inly on critical dimensions.