INJECTION MOLDING: Clamp Force Booster Aims to Increase Press Capacity

Steel “jaws” grip the mold along the parting line and boost clamp force by 30% to 60%.

After five years of R&D and several million test parts, Ironjaw LDA, Lisbon, Portugal, ironjaw.tech, is ready to introduce what it calls the first-ever clamping-force “booster” system for injection presses. Ironjaw says the technology, which can enable 30% to 60% more clamp force, can be adapted to all types of molds.

The actual device attaches to the tool along it’s parting line, activating when the mold closes and then unclamping prior to mold open, tieing into the machine's power system. Initially four sizes are available, boosting injection molding machine clamp force by 25, 50, 125, and 200 tons. Ironjaw says the technology is more compatible with all injection molding machines, and it believes a return on investment is possible within 6 months.  

That return is made possible in several different ways, including switching tools to smaller machines with a lower hourly rate; reducing/eliminating flash; less energy consumption; and the possibility to use less expensive resins, including recycled material. In terms of capital expenditures, it could allow a molder to purchase a smaller press up front, which also saves floorspace.  In a video, Ironjaw shows its unit on a mold running side by side with a tool without the technology to show there is no cycle-time penalty.

Ironjaw stated in a release that major equipment manufacturers in Europe and the United States will be testing the Ironjaw innovation over the next few months, with the first industrial deliveries announced for mid-2017. On the company’s web site, Ironjaw says it will be announcing demonstration centers in Europe and Asia. Founded by RocTool's Bruno Machet and Revology's Alex Guichard, Ironjaw will maintain a demonstration center in North America at RocTool's Charlotte, N.C. site.

At this time, all sales and marketing are based from the company's headquarters in Portugal, but the company is maintaining inventory in the U.S. with plans for a "specific team" to be recruited in 2018.