Temperature Control Boosts Productivity & Ends Problem of Burnt Parts

Precise control over hot runner temperatures was the key to ending a problem with burned parts that plagued a particular job being run by custom molder American Plastic Molding Corporation (APM), enabling the company to increase output of saleable product by 10 to 15%.
 
The part discoloration caused by burning stopped almost immediately after connecting an Ion Series temperature controller from Fast Heat Inc. to a 16-cavity hot runner system that was producing 30% glass-filled nylon 6.6 parts for a Tier 1 supplier to the automotive industry, according to Alan Myers, APM plant manager. Within two hours after installing the controller, APM had fine-tuned the system to the point where temperatures were reduced by nearly 70 ºF.  
 
“Before we installed the Fast Heat controller, we were unable to reduce the temperature without having gates freeze,” said Myers, “but within the first couple of hours, it became a question of ‘How low can the temperature go?’ We soon established a new temperature range of 430 to 440 ºF. The lower temperatures increased our output of good parts by 10 to 15% and eliminated the labor involved in sorting out parts that were burned.”
 
Fast Heat’s Ion Series controller has also increased productivity in other ways, according to Myers. In startups it quickly tunes the system to the new set of molding parameters. And in the event of a zone shutdown caused, for example, by a heater failure, the controller automatically slaves the affected cavity to another cavity, running two cavities from the thermocouple in the unaffected one.
 
“In the past, when a zone shut down, we would end up producing from 15 cavities instead of 16, making that much less product during the typical three-day turnaround needed to replace the defective unit,” said Myers.
 
Family-owned and -operated since it was founded in 1971, APM is a full-service custom molder that provides extensive engineering services and stages free quarterly seminars on design and engineering for customers and prospects. The company has 38 injection molding machines, an assembly facility with lean manufacturing cells, an on-site mold shop, and a 60,000 sq.ft. (5,575 sq,m) warehouse. It provides full engineering services and offers customers supply chain sourcing and management, warehousing, and distribution. Employing 120 people, APM serves customers in a wide range of end use industries.   

For more information, visit: www.apmc.com

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