Plastics are usually divided into three different categories: soft, hard, and reinforced plastics, which means that it is of vital importance the temperature to be controlled. Working with plastics also requires the use of coolants like water oil, light cutting oil, or just clean compressed air. They are required in order to prevent any reactions the plastic may have while being machined.
The most popular types of machining processes include sawing, turning, milling, routing, drilling, laser cutting and water jet cutting.
And now, let’s get down to the fitting and part assembly methods. There is a variety of them used for different purposes. Whether you are fitting plastic onto plastic or plastic onto metal, this can be done automatically and manually, and the most commonly used methods for fitting and part assembly are mechanical fasteners that use screws, rivets and eyelets.
The bonding method is used to create strong bonds between parts, while snap fits are fasteners (one of the most important one though) that are moulded into the plastic parts, and when assembled, all of them lock into one place. Hinges, on the other hand, are fitted onto parts that need to be opened and closed several times. Welding is the fusion of thermoplastic components that must be done in many different ways.
There are several different methods that welding is done.
- Hot gas welding – This type of welding is done by passing gas or air over heating elements with a special tool better-known as a welding gun.
- Spin welding – Spin welding is a type of welding where one plastic part is rotated against another one.
- Ultrasonic welding – The ultrasonic welding uses high-frequency vibrations between 15,000 to 40,000 cycles per second.
- Vibration welding – This type of welding is done when two components vibrate against one another. The outcome will be generated friction and heat and the vibration can be orbital or lineal.