Material tips with APSX-PIM


Plastic materials have specifications listed by the manufacturers.

Some of them are critical to know before using to make plastic parts with the APSX-PIM injection molding machine. 

Physical Properties

Melt Flow Rate (MFR) based on the ASTM D1238 (230C/2.16kg) test procedure in grams / 10 minutes: APSX-PIM likes to have a material with an MFR higher than 15. The higher it is, the better.

Injection Properties

Drying temperature and drying time: Some materials require a "drying" procedure before using them. Otherwise, the injection process will not produce quality parts due to the humidity content inside the plastic. You can use a small oven to perform this process.

This article also a helpful one to read about the drying process.

Processing Temperature: There is always a temperature range for processing the plastic material. That range should not exceed 310 Celsius since there is a max limit for the APSX-PIM barrel temperature. 99% of the plastic materials for the injection molding process are within this range. There are some exotic materials similar to Peek or Ultem with processing temperatures close to 400 Celsius.

Specific Applications

You should be good to use Polypropylene (PP) most of the time. If you need an ABS like material, you can try glass filled Polypropylene (PP-GF). ABS needs "drying", but PP does not, and PP is the most user friendly plastic to use. HDPE, TPE and TPO are also other user friendly choices.

Thin walls: You may want to go with a high flow material such as Nylon.

Strength: If you want to replace some metal parts in your application and need a strong plastic, you may want to go with a high strength material such as Delrin (Acetal). If you need a clear appearance, you can try Polycarbonate (PC), but chemical resistance would be an issue.