Polypropylene Thermoforming and Injection Molding
At Advanced Plastiform, Inc. we design and manufacture custom plastics for industries and businesses across the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic. In order to ensure that we are producing highly-durable plastics that can fulfill the needs of our customers, we work with numerous thermoplastic materials to provide the best result. Due to its versatility and multitude of uses, we are a leading polypropylene plastic manufacturer.
What Is Polypropylene?
Polypropylene is a thermoplastic polymer that is one of the most widely used plastics worldwide, second only to polyethylene. It was created in 1951 by petroleum chemists and was quickly used in large-scale commercial production.
Because it has a unique chemical makeup, it offers the following qualities:
- A high melting point
- Low water absorption
- Chemical resistant
- Highly flexible
- Food safe
- Low electrical conductivity.
Polypropylene thermoforming is a lower-cost, efficient way to manufacture large plastic goods and components. We heat the polypropylene until it is malleable, then fit it around a custom tool and finish the product using one of three methods:
Vacuum forming is the simplest method of polypropylene thermoforming. Once the plastic is heated and fitted around the custom tool, a high-powered vacuum removes air and draws the plastic more tightly against the tool. This method is best for plastic components that don’t require sharp edges, defined corners, or intricate details, such as car dashboards and shipping trays.
Often used as a less expensive alternative to polypropylene injection molding, pressure forming plastics allows us to achieve higher levels of detail and sharp edges than with vacuum forming. Once the polypropylene is fitted around the tool, the plastic is blasted at high pressure with air, pushing it against the tool and creating the sought after design and detail. Because it’s low electrical conductivity, polypropylene pressure forming is used for manufacturing scientific instruments and medical equipment.
Twin sheet forming is a complex method of polypropylene plastic manufacturing, requiring high levels of precision and care. It involves heating two plastic sheets at the same time, then fitting them together and fusing them. Because the plastic must be matched with pressed points where the fusion occurs, there’s no room for error or the integrity of the product is weakened. Twin sheet forming is ideal for manufacturing double-walled and hollow products, like air ducts, chutes used in material handling, and bed liners.
Polypropylene Injection Molding
Polypropylene injection molding is a method of manufacturing in which polypropylene is melted to its liquid state, then injected into a double-sided mold. Injection molding is ideal for small components and parts or plastic pieces that require intricate detailing and varying thickness throughout the item. While the up-front cost is more expensive and has a longer lead time than thermoforming, for high volume orders or orders that will be fulfilled regularly, the per-unit cost is actually very cost efficient.
What Is Polypropylene Used For?
It’s not much of an exaggeration to say polypropylene is used for everything. It’s easy to customize, has a high melting point, high flexibility, and is water resistant so it’s most commonly used for:
- Food packaging and containers
- Plastic cooking tools
- Electronics packaging
- Electronics panels and housing
- Items requiring “living hinges” that can bend frequently without breaking, like ketchup lids and to-go containers.
- Car batteries
- Laboratory equipment
- Carpeting and rugs
To learn more, please visit our frequently asked questions about polypropylene.
Contact Us for Polypropylene Manufacturing
We are proud to be a leader in polypropylene plastics manufacturing, capable of providing custom plastics to customers across numerous industries. Our clients know we offer the durable, long-lasting products they need while providing competitive pricing and fast lead times. We work with businesses in North Carolina, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Tennessee, Georgia, and Virginia.
Contact Advanced Plastiform, Inc.
Please contact us today by calling 919-404-2080 or filling out our form below to discuss your custom plastic manufacturing needs.