Allplastics Engineering offers a diverse range of engineering plastics that have proven themselves in a wide range of applications where metals such as bronze, stainless steel, ceramics, and cast iron are typically used.
Acetal, Cast Nylon, HDPE, PTFE, PEEK and UHMWPE are some of the thermoplastics that are used to reduce weight, avoid metal to metal contact, provide electrical insulation or almost eliminate the need for lubrication.
Some of the benefits of engineering plastics compared to wood or metal include:
- Corrosion resistance
- Wear resistance
- Weight reduction
- Noise dampening
- Isolate from metal contact
- Insulate electrically
- Chemical resistance
- Increase part life
- Thermal conductivity reduction
- High impact resistance
- Cost saving from elimination of lubrication down time
- Flexibility in design and choice
Selecting the right thermoplastic can be a challenging task as there is a vast and expanding range of engineering plastics to choose from. Allplastics highlights the following points that should be considered when selecting engineering plastics:
- Bearing/wear applications or static/dynamic application
- Environment- temperature, moisture, chemicals
- Exposure to UV
- Mating part or surface
- How important is impact and load resistance?
- Cost and Budget
- Volume (prototype are production run)
- Machineability (Is the material readily available in Sheet/Rod/Tube form?)
Some examples of metal replacement include:
- Shute liners made from steel replaced with wear resistance UHMWPE with superior sliding properties
- High Density Polyethylene slide panels replacing timber panels that rot and crack in removal trucks
- PETP replacing metal manifolds in printing equipment, offering precise tolerances and good chemical resistance where the metal was quickly eroded by constant ink exposure
- Cast Nylon Gears Machined to replace steel gears in harvesters eliminating lubrication, thus reducing down time
- Acetal bushes replacing steel bushes in car washing equipment
- Polypropylene separators in a canning factory where metal or timber were previously used
- Nylatron GSM sheaves increasing the wire rope life normally limited by metal sheaves.
More information on engineering plastics and their applications is available from Allplastics Engineering.