Silicone over-molding is a process that is used to cover, bond or encapsulate an existing part with silicone material. For example, a silicone over-molding process may be used for providing a grip surface to a smooth plastic handle, a flexible septum on a hard plastic surface or for encapsulating an electronics assembly for mounting or protection from the environment.
The motivation for over-molding silicone may include a means of final assembly, enhancing physical surface characteristics and feel, providing a self-healing internal access (ie, an integrated septum), creating the finished product enclosure (such as a key-ring LED light), creating a thermally conductive path for heat-sinking or perhaps applying elastic properties to mounting components.
Important things you should know about silicone over-molding:
1. Over-molding bonding strength typically increases over time.
2. Polymers that are ideal for over-molding include: polycarbonate, nylons and other high temperature resins.
3. In order to have a clean silicone over-mold, the over-molded part must be made with the requisite tight tolerance and part samples of exact size are needed. A stable-dimensioned part is needed to develop and maintain the desired clean over-mold outcome.
Visit us at booth 802 this week, March 26 & 27, at BIOMEDevice in Boston. Stop by to find out how to get a free silicone sample and ask us questions about your silicone molding projects.
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Silicones are playing an increasingly important role supporting improvement, innovation and progress in a wide range of industry sectors, from cars to electronics to textiles.
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Albright Technologies specializes in manufacturing prototype and low volume production silicone components for Medical, Pharmaceutical, Military, Aerospace and Consumer Goods applications. We have extensive silicone molding experience and can help you with silicone material selection, prototyping and design for manufacturability and scalable molding methods.
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The goal, when adhering to skin, is to hold the device inplace until it is time to remove it and to not damage the skin, either during wear or at the time of removal. Using methods developed for determining the surface energy of plastics and other materials, the surface energy for human skin has been measured in the low twenties [dynes/cm] – in other words, skin is as difficult to stick to as untreated polyolefins or even fluoropolymers. Low surface energy, as a property of human skin, is generally great for most of the things skin is expected to do, such as easy removal of contaminants with simple soap and water. The downside is that tapes must balance between adequate adhesion levels for the majority of users – the middle of the bell curve – and the ends of that curve. When the adhesion is too low, the device may not stay in place long enough for the full therapeutic effect and if it adheres too well, the tape may cause some mechanical trauma at removal.
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In addition to the LSR, HCR, and RTV silicone materials that we work with on a day-to-day basis, silicone can take on a variety of physical forms, ranging from solids to water-thin liquids and semi-viscous pastes, greases and oils. Click here to read some interesting examples.
Last month Susan Windham-Bannister, Ph.D., President and CEO of Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, participated In the latest installment of the WBZ NewsRadio 1030 Business Breakfast series. The panelists of business leaders & experts discussed the importance of making products and profits in Massachusetts. The group also discussed how the state’s manufacturing sector is staging an epic turnaround. The event examined and discussed the stories behind manufacturing success and how the state is helping to foster this growth and the beneficial ripple effect it is creating for the Commonwealth and beyond.
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Click here to learn more about Massachusetts Life Sciences Center.