Plastic milling is an art form, just as much as it is a science. Imagine working with a material which is incredibly malleable, delicate, and temperamental. That’s plastic. It has its benefits, though, such as being far cheaper than metal. As a result of the rising costs of metal, designers are seeking ways to replace machined metal parts with plastic. There are many commonly machined plastics and substrates, from Acrylic and polystyrene, to vinyl.
While switching over from metal production to plastics production doesn’t always require new equipment, some can manufacture both, plastic milling does require new ways of doing things. Plastics not only differ from metal, but they also machine differently from one plastic to another. Temperature and humidity variance often need to be addressed since plastics have a high coefficient of thermal expansion. Without air conditioning, certain plastics will cut differently with fluctuations in temperature being present. Just about any material expands as it gets warmer, but this isn’t really an issue with metals. However, some plastic materials expand at five times the rate of metals, or even more. For example, a part made of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene will expand ten times as much as the same part made from aluminum. Air conditioning, spray mists, and pressurized air are very effective means of cooling the cutting the interface, producing optimum surface finishes and close tolerances. When working with notch sensitive materials, coolants are strongly suggested as being used during drilling operations. This is because, in addition to minimizing the overheating of parts, coolants significantly prolong tool life.
One plastic milling shop which has perfected the art – and science – is PEP Connecticut Plastics. They are one of the leading plastic fabrication companies available today, producing only the highest complexity, highest-quality products with smooth, burr-free surfaces. Their plastic machining process includes lathe turning, CNC plastic machining, milling, and micro machining plastic. Additionally, they also use polishing techniques, such as vapor polishing, flame polishing, and mechanical buffing. With these techniques, they are able to routinely produce a wide variety of plastics parts and material. What other companies find too difficult to machine, PEP Connecticut Plastics does effortlessly.
With more than thirty years of experience, PEP Connecticut Plastics has extensive knowledge of every available plastic which could possibly be used. They help customers to choose the right material to suit their needs. From medical supplies to semiconductors and industrial equipment, PEP Connecticut Plastics has the quality you need at the price you can afford. Plastic milling is a difficult industry to be in, but PEP Connecticut Plastics makes it look easy.