Got a plastics problem? Bring it to the surgery!

The Plastics Consultancy Network (PCN) will again be attending the PDM Event as part of the “Ask the Consultant” plastics surgery service to all PDM Event visitors on stand E007.

“Ask the Consultant” provides all visitors to PDM Event with free access to the knowledge of PCN experts. The industry often forgets that many designers and users know that they want to use plastics but really don’t know where to start.

“Ask the Consultant” provides quick access to leading consultants for free no obligation information.

Here are some examples of problems brought to the surgery in past years:

Case 1:

A visitor had a viable plan to market a plastic pallet for the food industry. The Plastics Surgery was able to recommend a material (polypropylene) and provide an indicative cost for the injection mould (+/- £100,000) and the likely production costs for the product based on estimated material content. Design ideas to reduce complexity and make moulding easier were also discussed with the visitor and potential suppliers recommended for both tooling and production. The visitor was then able to update their business plan with a better knowledge of the fixed and variable costs.

Case 2:

A visitor was interested in entering the medical products market with an innovative device and surveying the possibilities. The Plastics Surgery was able to outline the quality requirements of the market, the time-scales for achieving approval and the potential materials for production. The visitor then decided to use sub-contractors rather than try to set up internal moulding capability.

Case 3:

A visitor was interested in producing a part by extrusion and needed assistance with the design. The length of the part and the market volumes meant that extrusion was not actually the best process and injection moulding was recommended. The change of process meant that the visitor could also modify the design to include more features for the end user and increase the value of the product to the market.

Case 4:

A visitor was having moulding problems with an over-moulded product (material compatibility) the Plastics Surgery was able to identify the issues with over moulding and the materials and recommend a more suitable grade of material for the base component.

Case 5:

A visitor was interested in reducing energy costs and wanted ideas of the best place to start. After a short discussion, the Plastics Surgery provided advice on the most profitable areas for investment and the likely pay-back for the investments.

Case 6:

A visitor to the Plastics Surgery was looking to recycle ink jet cartridges but did not know where to start. The Plastics Surgery gave guidance on contacts for recycling and the potential issues in recycling of cartridges.

Case 7:

A visitor to the Plastics Surgery had developed an innovative joining method for flat pack assembly of wood or other materials which involving a clip moulded from Acetal which could rigidly hold the two pieces together. The joint should withstand up to 100 times of joining and parting. There were looking for 2 things a) a more cost effective material and b) a best way to obtain a fire resistant product. The Plastics Surgery provided advice on suitable materials and the properties needed.

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