Now viewing: plastic prototyping

Chris Passanante
By Chris Passanante
Wednesday, August 27, 2014 - 00:00

A while ago we posted two articles touching on the plastic machining capabilities of Elite Plastics - Plastic machining capabilities at Elite Plastics and Benefits of plastic Machining. Recently, our plastic machining capabilities have grown as we’ve upgraded equipment and expanded our capacity.

Plastic machining offers a number of valuable uses when manufacturing plastic parts. Machining can be utilized for secondary machining, taping holes, trimming and de-gating, prototyping, and it even can be used to fabricate full parts from one piece of plastic. Our plastic machining department is equipped with a state of the art vertical milling center with a fourth axis. It has a work capacity of 40” x 20” x 25” and a spindle speed of 12,000 RPM with a 1,400 RPM tool change. To ensure that the parts are free of contaminates, we use air instead of coolant.

Plastic machining is a very cost effective option when prototyping new parts. Since parts can be fabricated completely, it eliminates the need for costly tooling, and allows you to verify the part design and functionality before investing in a tool.

One great example of how our plastic machining capabilities can be utilized for prototyping projects is a connector panel we provided for a customer as a prototype. This connector panel was made from flame retardant plastic. The fabrication of this prototype started with a blank piece of plastic. All of the features are machined into the front and back within our machining center.  The panels were used to test fit and function for a new product, before developing tooling.

Stay tuned for another post discussing how secondary machining was utilized to create a custom solution for one of our medical customers!

Dan Thurmond
By Dan Thurmond
Thursday, February 20, 2014 - 01:00

Last week Elite Plastics Business Development and Engineering staff attended the Medical Device and Manufacturing (MD&M) West show in Anaheim, CA. The MD&M show is the largest tradeshow we attend and exhibit at, featuring companies in plastics, packaging, medical devices and more.

Beyond showcasing our products, services and capabilities, the show offers a unique environment to meet with customers, vendors, explore new trends and technologies, and also reconnect with other GMN divisions and staff on what’s new. Two Elite Plastics engineers took advantage of their time at the show to explore the Plastec West and West Pack sections of the show, where they networked with raw material suppliers and learned about new materials.

In addition, our engineers also enjoyed learning about new automation equipment and machinery – especially prototyping technology. 3D printing is one of the leading plastic prototyping technologies. One of the show exhibitors supplies prototyping equipment and 3D printing services. Their booth showcased a machine that uses a unique 3D printing process that provides more strength and functionality.

All of us who attended the show enjoyed meeting with customers, vendors, and other industry experts. We are looking forward to what we learn and who we’ll meet next year already.