|Plastic Vacuum forming is a simplified version of thermoforming, where a sheet of plastic is heated to a forming temperature, stretched onto a single-surface mold, and forced against the mold by a vacuum. This process can be used to form plastic into permanent objects such as turnpike signs and protective covers. Normally draft angles are present in the design of the mold (a recommended minimum of 3°) to ease removal of the formed plastic part from the mold.|
Vacuum forming is a technique that is used to shape a variety of plastics.
In some factory it is used to form/shape thin plastic,usually plastics such as; polythene.
Vacuum forming is used when an unusual shape like a ‘dish’ or a box-like shape is needed.
Thermoforming is one of the oldest methods of processing plastic materials.
Vacuum formed products are all around us and play a major part in our daily lives.
The process involves heating a plastic sheet until soft and then draping it over a mould. A vacuum is applied sucking the sheet into the mould. The sheet is then ejected from the mould.
Understanding the Vacuum Forming Process
Plastic Vacuum forming is where a flat sheet of extruded plastic is heated until pliable, it is then allowed to shape by applying a vacuum. Once the forming has been cooled and hardened once again, you are able then to trim the part to the desired profile. The limitations of vacuum forming are that undercuts are not normally possible and a degree of taper on any vertical face is usually warranted.
Advantage of Plastic Vacuum Forming
The advantage of plastic vacuum forming is its flexibility, as are cost effectiveness and speed of production. Prototypes can be produced quickly and accurately to prove parts before full production tooling is required. Tooling costs are also substantially less expensive in comparison to most other plastic process manufacturing, namely injection moulding, especially on large parts or short production runs.
Vacuum forming offers several processing advantages over other forming processes. Unlike other thermoplastic forming processes, where powder or granulate are the starting point, vacuum forming uses extruded plastic sheet.
Vacuum Forming Applications
Not every design or shape is suitable for vacuum forming but it remains the most cost effective and efficient method for processing the most diverse range of plastic processing applications.
Vacuum forming machines are used by high profile customers such as Apple,Google,Disney,Bolshoi Ballet,Ford,Tesla, Ferrero Rocher,Nestle,Makita,Royal Air Force,Philips,Yale University,Dupont and many more across electronics,film & theatre,automotive, aerospace,confectionary, packaging, education and many more applications.
The continually growing popularity of vacuum forming amongst these leading companies and institutions demonstrates the process remains the number one choice for a hugely diverse range of applications.