European Plastics News staff
Schwertberg, Austria - Austrian machinery maker Engel claims its Clearmelt technology for applying scratch-resistant clear polyurethane coatings to moulded thermoplastic parts could improve both cosmetics and economics.
Demonstrated on an integrated production cell at the company's open house event in the early summer, the system uses Hennecke's existing ClearRIM wood and plastics coating system, which is adapted to supply PU coatings on up to six injection moulding machines. It is claimed to produce parts with brilliant depth and potential for incorporating higher added value features such as electronic sensor circuitry between the thermoplastic moulding and PU coating. It is necessary, however, to trim the part edges and clean away mould release.
The company produced the Clearmelt mouldings on a 120s cycle time in a 1+1 cavity sliding table mould. The tool was mounted in a 280-tonne Engel e-Motion machine with Engel's own ERC linear part removal robot.
Bayer MaterialScience was a partner in the project as PC/ABS blend materials producer, Votteler provided the PU coatings expertise, while automotive parts developer and producer Burg Design was also involved.