Complex hollow parts in a single step

image As the competitive pressure increases, the European injection moulders need more competitive solutions. There is a growing demand for highly integrated and automated system solutions. A good example is the manufacturing of complex hollow parts, which will be demonstrated live at "FIP solution plastique" exhibition (Lyon, France, from 24 to 27 May). ENGEL (Austria) will show a compact, tie-bar-less ENGEL victory 1050H/500W/200 combi machine, with a Multitube mould system from Pernoud (Oyonnax, France), to produce a 3-component hollow application such as intake manifolds for 3 cylinder engines,  with complex geometry, in a single step. This is achieved by means of a multiple stage injection process that integrates picking & placing and over-moulding in a single cycle. First threaded bushings are insert-placed into the mould and then over-moulded. The pre-moulded part for injection of the second component will be turned in the mould by a Stäubli six-arm robot before the third component, a TPE seal, is applied. To support multiple component injection moulding the victory machine is equipped with a piggyback unit and a third injection unit by Babyplast. The finished component is taken off by a multiple axis robot and deposited on an integrated conveyor belt. The robot control unit is fully integrated with the CC 200 control unit of the injection moulding machine. Because the robot works inside the extended safety guarding, the production cell only needs a small footprint.
The benefit of the plant’s high degree of integration is that the hollow parts are produced in a single process step that removes the need for finishing, for example, a welding process. Compared with legacy gas injection technology, the Multitube concept also ensures enhanced quality of the interior surfaces and consistent wall thicknesses.