In-Mold Assembly Process Boosts Automotive SealIn-Mold Assembly Process Boosts Automotive Seal
July 15, 2011
In an interesting new assembly technology, cowl grilles and engine cover bulb seals can be produced in a process contained within an injection molding cycle. These parts are shipped right out of the tool directly to the customer.
The two-component process reduces the weight of the assembly 30 percent and cut costs 10 percent, while improving quality by creating a more permanent seal.
Up to now, the molded carrier and the hollow elastomer seal were manufactured separately and assembled in a discrete step. The hollow chamber seals had to be produced in a dedicated extrusion line often located offsite from the assembly location.
In the new process, an EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) rubber bulb is hollowed out in an injection molding machine using a projectile injection technology (PIT) developed by Rochling Automotive.
The rubber bulb is chemically bonded to a polypropylene structural carrier in the injection molding machine, reducing the risk of detachment.
"Superior quality of the two-component bonding and the hollow chamber sealing -- without a cost penalty. These are the advantages of the PIT-cowl grille of Rochling," says Ludwig Huber, R&D director at Rochling Automotive, in an interview.
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