Because we can use various materials in the fabrication of our custom displays, depending on budget, time frame, and use of the product, we thought we would discuss some of the various materials in depth, including their many uses and benefits, starting with polystyrene.
First of all, polystyrene, both solid and film, is used in many of the products we use in our everyday lives, including disposable plastic cutlery and dinnerware, CD Cases, envelope windows, license plate frames the list goes on and on...
Polystyrene foams are good thermal insulators and are therefore used in food service products as well as building insulation. As a thermoplastic polymer, polystyrene is in a sold state at room temperature, but easily melts when heated, which makes it ideal for both extrusion, as well as injection molding where it can be easily cast into a mold.
Used in many composite products, like tub and shower enclosures, automobile body panels, wind turbine parts, and boats.
Polystyrene is a very hard and brittle plastic, and when purchasing sheets, comes in many thicknesses, starting at one thousandth of an inch (.001), .020, .030, .040 and up. Project and budget would be factors to consider when choosing both the material and the thickness.
Pieces can have visible relief markings due to the molding process.
Usually more cost effective than injection molded acrylic or fabricated acrylic
In a nutshell, product functionality, and budget are important things to consider when choosing a material for your project, something our team here at benchmark displays can walk you through!
Injection molding is one of the most widely used manufacturing processes in use today. Injection molds are used to create many things in regular use, such as containers, bottle caps, automotive parts, and displays, the list goes on and on. So what makes it so popular? Let’s take a brief look inside the process.
Material, in the form of pellets, or granules are fed through a hopper into a heated barrel, melted, and then forced into a mold by a reciprocating screw, where it is allowed to cool into the desired shape. (see video below).
One of the clear advantages of injection molding is the fast production time. Once a mold has been designed (the expensive part) and depending on how many impressions are in the tool, the cycle time can be anywhere from 15-30 seconds, which allows for high production runs, repeatability, and low labor costs due to the fact that there is little need to finish parts after the molding process.
It also allows for greater flexibility in the materials that you use. There are literally thousands of different polymers to choose from, the material selected will depend on the strength and function of the final part.