Here is the outline for the topics covered in the Plastic411 Scientific Molding workshops. These are also available for in-house attendance. For more information, contact Garrett MacKenzie at :
Plastic injection processing has experienced massive change in the last 20 years. The days of molding by time and pressure have given way to molding by position, peak pressure and process repeatibility, aka scientific molding.
I am hosting this Plastics Today webinar and will provide instruction on key scientific molding principles.
Essential topics include: process development, recording, monitoring and control; standardization; design optimization experiments; and process optimization.
Molding managers, process engineers, quality engineers, process technicians and anyone who needs an understanding of scientific molding and lean manufacturing concepts will benefit from this webinar.
Attend this webinar and learn:
Plastics production rides a fine line when the goal of low scrap, high yields and sustainable, repeatable systems are being developed. Without the proper approach, the system can quickly fall into one of two categories: tribulation.. or turmoil. Quite often you will hear old school molders describing their battle for a robust processing system as “fire fighting” in the world of plastic injection molding. In real terms, “fighting fires” on the production floor is a sign of system failure. True molding standards don’t require constant coddling, adjusting, sorting, etc. It is real easy to fall into the trap of applying “Band-Aids” to molding situations when the proper approach should have been……
TOP 10 REASONS COMPANIES FAIL AT SCIENTIFIC MOLDING
Initially I covered 10 scenarios that occur which cause “scientific molding” based companies to fail in their utilization of the principles they attempt to practice. There were many more I could outline, but to prevent readers from sleeping through my soap box episode, I only gave 10 reasons. In revisiting this article, I will increase the information provided in the first ten and also add another five failures, bringing the total to 15.
It is important to understand what scientific molding is. Scientific molding is not bells and whistles, with fancy terminology, beautiful pictures and fancy equipment that most plastics controllers are outfitted with now anyways. Outlining all the steps behind establishing true process would be its own article. But at the end of the day, scientific molding is a series of steps that first establish a solid repeatable process, which is then validated.
The general rule I use in validation is that if a process is true, a press meets or exceeds production requirements for a period of 24 hours with minimal (1.5%) to no scrap. This process must be repeatable, and include a fully standardized set up. True processes are generally easy to start over and over with a minimal amount of start-up scrap. In cases where the start-up procedure is more complex, there are strict start up procedures that are clearly documented and enforced to assure that the procedures are sound, and deviation is minimal. This means that the new job is easily changed over without variation and start up is achieved without a major scrap and/ or process adjustment phase.
The next step is process control. Process control limits are established to assure that process consistency is maintained. Process changes that stray outside of those limits are viewed as “red flags” requiring a deeper assessment of what changes have occurred. If a process requires multiple changes during start-up, or if a process requires frequent change during production. SOMETHING is wrong!
There is a reason scientific molding approach has been defined as a repetitive, or standardized process. It is important to remember that it IS possible to have more than one working process. Our goal as processors always remains the same. Easy start up, 0-1.5% scrap, 100%+ efficiency based on quoted cycle. This defines true process. If the process we have deemed as valid does not provide high efficiencies, low to zero scrap and adequate start up results, we must reevaluate and look for ways to achieve maximum yields.
Any and all historical data needs to be recorded for future analysis. It is important to note that when processes go “bad”, it isn’t the process that fails. Data gives us direction and insight into changes have occurred. In most cases, recordable data provides a troubleshooting blueprint which is used to correct whatever change has occurred. The first thing to remember when documenting a process is strong data is key! A great comparison would be the differences between a black and white picture vs. the same picture having been colorized. The more information that is recorded, the better we distinguish changes in molding conditions. Poor approach towards process monitoring will ALWAYS result in vague interpretations of available data, because the data sets are limited. Limited data leads to poor interpretation of data sets and slow evaluation due to the lack of information available.
With this, let’s address the meat of the topic, which is why molders fail:
It is also important to note that there are changes that occur to auxiliary equipment itself, which requires historical data to be collected. Thermolator valves stick causing overheating or poor heat dispersion, gallons per minute readings change, valve gates stop functioning. Monitor every condition available to you for verification of true process.
These are some of the biggest failures that occur while trying to practice a systematic approach towards scientific molding. The foundation of scientific molding theory is standardization and monitoring of your operation. These remove chaos from each molding system by simplifying procedures and establishing a concrete molding approach. Lean molding requires consistent replication and thorough documentation of successful runs to assure each production event is successful. Standardization, monitoring and maintaining process consistency are the keys to a strong molding foundation and solid profits.
By Garrett MacKenzie
The weekend comes to an end and the time comes to bring the molding floor back online for the beginning of a new work week. A molder can sometimes dread the tasks associated with a full plant restart. There are many potential failures that can occur as a plant is returned to a production state. Despite these risks, much of the headache can be avoided simply through proper shutdown and start up procedures. The following article addresses many key components that often lead to poor restarts. It also provides insight into some of the methods that can be implemented to not only reduce system breakdowns, but also can offer smoother start-ups with fewer problems…
Plastic injection processing has experienced massive change in the last 20 years. The days of molding by time and pressure have given way to molding by position, peak pressure and robust process. RJG and John Bozzelli were major pioneers in the development of decoupled and scientific molding as the procedures were developed and given structure. Plastic injection as an “art” gave way to plastics processing as a science of repeatable, standardized processes.
In today’s fast paced plastic injection industry, lean manufacturing is a primary driver of profitability. Without lean, organizations find their operations are sluggish and ineffective. This not only affects a company’s ability to successfully grow and prosper, but the capability of taking on new work also suffers because current systems have not been effectively streamlined. This article addresses cycle time optimization, outlining the different variables within the molding process that can be used to maximize profits.
One of the first points that needs to be made when addressing this topic is to acknowledge that it is possible for machines to run too fast. Every molding job is different, and the following conditions must be satisfied to properly assure that the optimization is successful……
Watch the YouTube presentation below for information about Plastic411.com ..
The Leadership Network: Jeffery Liker
You can only imagine how exciting it was for industrial engineers and researchers when they were conducting research to understand the strategy and tools behind Toyota’s meteoric growth.
All the studies showed that Toyota was faster, with less costs and inventory, and delivering a higher quality compared to the American and European automakers. And it wasn’t by a small amount; Toyota used a small fraction of the inventory yet built cars on time every day with high quality…..
by John Beaumont
The Beaumont Effect is recognized as the source of mold filling imbalances and product variations in molds
with four or more cavities. The worst failures caused by the phenomena can be most easily (visually) recognized
in molds with 8 or more cavities. However, shear induced melt variations impact every injection molded
part, with a greater influence than most realize….