Automotive Composites With a Soft Touch
Auto interior component marries continuous-fiber composite with hard/soft overmolding.
KraussMaffei is presenting live demonstrations of the latest iteration of its FiberForm technology for lightweight composites. FiberForm combines thermoforming of thermoplastic organosheets reinforced with continuous fibers and injection overmolding into a single process. This process results in lightweight, high-strength reinforced-plastic components that are particularly attractive for automotive vehicles.
At NPE, a KM GXW 450-2000/1400 multi-component injection molding machine with swivel-plate technology will mold a center armrest part in a mold from Proper Tooling. The new wrinkle is overmolding the organosheet composite not only with rigid thermoplastic but also with soft-touch TPE.
The company will also be demonstrating this production cell at Proper’s headquarters in Warren, Michigan, after NPE2018 to ensure engineers local to the Detroit area can get the chance to see this technology firsthand.
Modifications to the common core pin can be a simple solution, but don’t expect all resins to behave the same. Gas assist is also worth a try.
Weld or knit lines are perhaps the most common and difficult injection molding defect to eliminate.
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