Structural Foam Molding
Structural foam molding is a unique process that offers industrial designers and product manufacturers valuable opportunities to explore.
Simply described, it is a low-pressure molding process, similar to standard high-pressure injection molding, but capable of producing very large parts and components.
Structural foam molding technology encompasses several different techniques and processes, each adding to the range of possibilities.
Miles Products prepared this PDF guide as a handy reference tool for those planning to use structural foam molding to improve their products.
The design guide includes:
The guide begins with a process overview. It covers some of the different methods used in structural foam molding, such as:
MULTI-NOZZLE MOLDING. The use of multiple nozzles allows for the production of larger and more complex parts with improved cosmetic finishes. Multi-nozzle technology also makes is possible for multiple parts to be molded simultaneously in the same press and run.
GAS-ASSIST MOLDING. Gas-assist is another technology used with structural foam molding. The main benefit of gas assistance is the flexibility it provides for the introduction of features such as bosses and ribs into your designs. It also improves the product cosmetics for outer surfaces that rival the look of small high-pressure injection molded parts.
Applications of Structural Foam
Structural foam molding is used in many industries and for a wide variety of products where large durable parts are required. This includes an array of products and components from outdoor consumer goods to architectural and industrial applications, through large commercial truck parts, industrial and medical equipment.
The guide outlines some of the many types of parts and products that use structural foam molding.
Materials and Design Considerations
The design guide also contains specifications, design tips and guidelines that can be used as quick references when planning and designing new products.
- Material Comparisons
- Wall Thickness Guidelines
- Material Flow
- Transition Sections
- Radii and Fillets
- Tolerances and Warpage Control
- Draft Angles
- Bosses and Ribs
- and More
Assembly and Secondary Operations
The size of parts that are possible using structural foam molding can bring break-through improvements to a product’s design. But even with such an increase is part scale, often multiple parts are required.
Some of the most common fastening techniques as well as other secondary operation are covered in the guide.