Plastic has specialized in metal replacement for more than 40 years. There are many reasons why plastic has become the ideal material in manufacturing parts and prototypes. Industry demands and innovations in plastics has not only greatly improved the capabilities of plastic materials, it has also streamlined the science of manipulating it.
Here are the main benefits to replacing your metals parts with all things plastic:
Stronger than ever before. Plastics are generally much lighter than metals, but in the past, they were not as strong. Thanks to the addition of carbon fibers, plastic and plastic and thermoplastics can even outperform metal in specific strength (materials’ strength divided by its density).
Shorter Production. It’s important to meet the demands of your market. Plastic Thermoforming is far less labor intensive, and offers shorter production times. This reduces costs as manufacturers and their clients will save money on energy and labor when compared with the more time-consuming metal fabrication processes.
Increase Versatility of Design. More than ever, it is important to design products that are both incredibly functional but also leave a strong visual impact. Molding and decorating products and parts out of plastic, instead of metal, allow you to create complicated products with varying colors and surfaces without increasing costs or production times. On the contrary, metal fabrication can not only be difficult, design options can also be limited.
It’s a lightweight. It goes without saying that metal is extremely heavy. With the production of some products, like automobiles, the heft is a necessary component. However, when manufacturing metal parts, the increased weight can be logistically complicated and expensive. However, thermoplastic parts can be as much as six times lighter than its steel counterparts, which means everything from shipping to manufacturing costs can be reduced.