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What are the manufacturing benefits of bonding plastics?

Posted by Kevin Smith

Apr 22, 2014 9:30:00 AM

Potting resin being applied to a substrateBonding plastics can deliver significant manufacturing benefits and improve the durability and performance of materials.  The term “bonding” refers to both the adhesive of one part to another, and the thin coatings or thick layers of adhesives, overmolding or potting resins that are bonded to a substrate.  Plastics can be bonded to other plastics, as well as to virtually any other material; wood, metal, glass, and ceramics are all common examples.  But there are two prerequisites to securing a superior bond.  You must match the right adhesive to your application, and thoroughly clean and prepare the part(s) being bonded via surface modification.

Generally speaking, plasma surface modification is the preferred method of cleaning and preparing parts.  Plasma is an efficient and earth-friendly process that offers the advantage of complete, 3D coverage to eliminate the risk of any void in the bonding process.   It also provides a longer lifespan than corona, photolysis, and parylene surface modification techniques.  

Here’s some of the bonding benefits our industrial partners have realized with plasma treatment:

Medical:

  • Minimizing bubble formation on syringe barrels
  • Eliminating stick/slip properties on syringe plungers

Optical:

  • Cleaning of devices prior to coating or assembly
  • Improving the adhesion of lubricous coatings on intraocular lens cartridges

Diagnostic:

  • Promoting hydrophilicity on microtiter (multi-well) plates
  • Building hydrophilicity without the need for surfactants on filter media

Injection-molded devices:

  • Increasing the adhesion of overmolded materials
  • Enhancing the adhesion of labels or gaskets on cans and lids

Printing:

  • Improving the adhesion of water-based inks in screen printing applications

Want to learn more about the benefits of plasma treatment and Surface Modification?  Download your free copy of our Surface Modification White Paper How Low-Pressure Plasma Treatments Can Benefit your Manufacturing Process.

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Topics: Surface Modification, plasma, Bonding Plastics

Rulon Bearings: A Review of Common Formulas

Posted by Dave Biering

Apr 17, 2014 9:30:00 AM

Rulon 641 is FDA-cleared for use in food and pharmaceutical applicationsRulon® is one of the materials that we are asked about most often.  While there are over 300 unique formulas of this material, today we’ll review some of the most-common formulas.  No matter which formula your application requires, you should expect a versatile, self-lubricating, and low-friction material for bearings, seals, gaskets and structural components. 

There are literally hundreds of variations of Rulon, but in our experience, the most popular are Rulon® 641, Rulon® J, and Rulon® LR.   Each offers slightly different attributes, yet all have delivered superior results to our clients.

For more details and technical specs on the materials below, our Rulon Comparison Chart is a great resource!

Rulon 641

FDA-cleared for use in food and pharmaceutical applications, Rulon 641 is an excellent material for seals in pumps and valves.  It is able to withstand the sanitation washdowns required of food and drug processing. 

Rulon J

Provides the lowest coefficient of friction of any filled-PTFE bearing compound.  It also offers good wear properties against soft mating materials.

Rulon LR

The most-commonly used material for general purpose applications.  It is chemically inert and with excellent dielectric properties, maroon in color.

Have you downloaded your free copy of our Rulon White Paper?   It provides a quick review of the top manufacturing controls to embrace ― and the pitfalls to avoid ― when selecting true Rulon materials for your next application.

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Topics: Rulon J, Rulon Materials, Self-Lubricating Bearings, Rulon 641, Rulon LR

When is it time to replace bearings?

Posted by Dave Biering

Apr 15, 2014 9:30:00 AM

Aluminum can production line.How one manufacturer saved $30K with self-lubricating plastic bearings

When is the right time to replace bearings?  This question really has no straightforward answer; there are simply too many variables to account for.  Operating conditions, working temperature, weather exposure, and friction levels all contribute to bearing longevity. But in the debate over metal vs. plastic bearings, there’s no doubt about the advantages of self-lubricating plastics.  Plastic bearings have a significantly longer lifespan and require zero maintenance.  Here’s how one beverage processor saved $30,000 in replacement costs with self-lubricating plastic bearings:

A major producer of aluminum cans approached us when their production line was continually halted so maintenance crews could manually grease and service the metal linear bearings located on their positioning tables.  Each table held four bearings that were difficult to access, yet required regular greasing.  Each time one of the metal bearings failed, the production line came to a halt while the faulty component was replaced.  Between down production time plus the expense of the replacement bearings, costs quickly escalated across the production line. 

By switching to self-lubricating FCJ bearings, our client has completely eliminated the need for manual greasing and frequent work interruptions.  Production has increased, and the subsequent savings in materials, labor and maintenance has totaled over $30,000 in the first year alone.  Our technical brief covers all of the details of this beverage processing application.

How often do you need to replace your industrial bearings?  Here are 5 Common Signs of Bearing Failure to help you evaluate.  Or let our In-house Experts review the advantages with you directly!

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Topics: Food, Bearing Failure, Self-Lubricating Bearings

Trilon Modified UHMW – Ideal for Custom Components

Posted by Dave Biering

Apr 10, 2014 9:30:00 AM

Trilon AR and FRA question was recently posted to our portal asking about Trilon as a custom component.  Trilon is a modified-UHMW that gives superior wear in highly-abrasive environments. The material is available in variety of formulas, and can be fabricated in the field, or easily customized in-house using carbide or diamond tools.  Trilon excels in industries where durability and longevity matter; including mining, pulp and paper, and timber handling.  Explore our Railroad White Paper to review how custom Trilon FR components delivered superior fire resistance to a mass transit system.

Both Trilon AR and FR give nearly double the wear life of virgin acetal, and up to four times the wear  of nylon.  And since Trilon has a dynamic friction of just .07, the material requires less energy to drive systems ― which can help lower your operating costs. 

Look to Trilon for:

  • Lightweight alternative to stainless steel (8x lighter)
  • Self-lubricating properties that “polish” mating materials to reduce friction
  • Abrasion, moisture and all-weather tolerance
  • Lower operating costs

Ask our design Experts for a quote on Trilon custom components today!

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Topics: UHMW, Trilon, Custom Bearings

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