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Metal replacement engineering plastics available from Allplastics Engineering

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article image Machining components traditionally made from metals can be made from engineering plastics
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Allplastics Engineering  have a diverse range of engineering plastics available that have proven themselves in many applications where metals such as bronze, stainless steel, ceramics, and cast iron have been traditionally used.

Acetal, cast nylon, HDPE, PTFE, PEEK, and UHMWPE are some of the thermoplastics selected in order to reduce weight, avoid metal to metal contact, electrical insulation, or almost eliminate the need for lubrication.

Some of the benefits of engineering plastics compared to wood or metal include:

  • corrosion resistance
  • wear resistance
  • weight reduction
  • noise dampening
  • isolate from metal contact
  • insulate electrically
  • chemical resistance
  • increase part life
  • recyclability
  • thermal conductivity reduction
  • high impact resistance
  • cost saving from elimination of lubrication down time
  • flexibility in design and choice.
The selection of the correct thermoplastic can be a challenging task due to the expanding range of engineering plastics available. Allplastics Engineering are happy to help in making the right selection by applying their knowledge and experience.

They have the following points to consider when making an engineering plastics selection:

  • bearing/wear applications or static/dynamic application
  • environment - temperature, moisture, chemicals
  • exposure to UV
  • mating part or surface
  • the importance of impact and load resistance for the particular application
  • cost and budget
  • volume (prototype or production run)
  • machineability (is the material readily available in sheet, rod, or tube form?).
Some examples of applications where engineering plastics can act as a metal replacement include:
  • shute liners made from steel replaced with wear resistance UHMWPE with superior sliding properties
  • high density polyethylene slide panels replacing timber panels that rot and crack in removalist trucks
  • PETP replacing metal manifolds in printing equipment, offering precise tolerances and good chemical resistance where the metal was quickly eroded by constant ink exposure 
  • cast nylon gears machined to replace steel gears in harvesters eliminating lubrication, thus reducing down time 
  • acetal bushes replacing steel bushes in carwashing equipment 
  • polypropylene separators in a canning factory where metal or timber were previously used 
  • nylatron GSM sheaves increasing the wire rope life normally limited by metal sheaves.

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