Vacuum Forming, also known as “thermoforming”, refers to the use of materials thicker than 0.2mm, usually 0.2mm-12mm. The principle of vacuum forming is to heat the clamped sheet through the machine oven to a softened state, then the mold forms a closed space and the air in the mold cavity is extracted in a flash, the sheet is tightly covered in the mold exterior. After making cooling and shaping, the finished product can be obtained.
For vacuum forming process, the main materials we use are: ABS, HDPE, HIPS, PET and PETG in various colors and a variety of modified plastics such as transmissive sheet and transparent sheet. Generally what we most used is ABS, which it can be mixed with other material to meet difference function. ABS+UV will mainly used for the outdoor products, like golf cart roof, plastic car parts and so on. For ABS+PMMA, it is more suitable for the product with anti-scratch. And the surface will be more shiny and smooth. For the other material – ABS+PC, it mostly used for the products with stronger surface and UV-resistant. In addition to glossy surface, textured surface is also workable, such as electrical grain pattern, frost grain pattern and diamond pattern and the like.
Vacuum forming process is actually common in our daily life, but people don’t know more about what products are suitable for manufacturing by this process. The following are the common fields used: electrical appliance shells, car body covers, pet trays, advertising light boxes, automotive interior and exterior decoration, packaging, medical equipment, household appliances, sporting goods, medical equipment, food equipment, instrument shells, lighting, refrigerator industry, air conditioning industry and home appliance accessories and other areas.
Hope this article will make you more learn about vacuum forming and what kind of products we can made by this process.