Rubber Molding and Stamping
Natural rubber, which is still widely used, has been joined by a large array of synthetic materials called elastomers that have rubber-like qualities. These elastomers are developed to meet specific chemical and environmental requirements. They range from the inexpensive types such as Polyisoprene and SBR to Neoprene, nitrile, and EPDM to exotic compounds like Butyl, Hypalon, EPH, silicone and Viton.
The molding of rubber and elastomeric compounds is accomplished by forcing the material into a shape using heat and pressure. Rubber and elastomers can be molded by compression, transfer and injection methods. The volume of parts and type of compound required will determine the molding method used.
The accepted rule relative to mold tooling is that compression molding is the least expensive, transfer molding requires medium-price tooling and injection techniques need the most expensive tooling.
Part design and material should be verified through the use of prototype samples before a production mold is made. This can save time and eliminate the possibility of parts that do not fit.
Typical molded rubber parts would include bumpers, capacitor boots, feet, grommets, O-rings, shock mounts, stoppers, crutch tips, and suction cups.
Stamped rubber products are produced by die-cutting vulcanized sheets of rubber or sponge. Die-cutting operations are accomplished with layout tables, high-speed presses or tables with traversing heads. Typical stamped (die-cut)parts include gaskets, washers, seals or dust covers.
A full-service supplier of molded and stamped rubber parts will provide product engineering assistance; mix material compounds; design and produce molds and provide manufacturing capabilities to produce parts that conform to the precise quality standards of the customer.
Molded and stamped parts are supplied to OEM industries such as appliances, medical, furniture, toys, hardware, electrical/electronic, transportation, and sporting goods.
Hypalon and Viton are registered trademarks of DuPont
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