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Forming and Molding

General Forming Information

The science of molding thermoplastic composites is very detailed and involved to produce good parts, but a simplified overview is; heat and pressure…. a lot of heat and a lot of pressure (but not too much of either).

Molds

Molds to form thermoplastic composites can be made from a number of different materials.  Aluminum and steel are the most common but composite and constrained silicon molds can also be used.  Effectively a mold can be made out of any material that can withstand the pressure and heat required for any particular part.  A typical mold would be a two-part matched metal tool, as shown below.  Multi-part and enclosing molds are available, but can add significantly to upfront part costs.

Basic Mold Design

325_mold