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Injection Molding Best Practices

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Injection Molding Best Practices2024-02-13T22:09:36+00:00

CableXChecker®: Diagnose Hot Runner Cable Issues

CableXChecker® - Effectively Getting to the Root of the Problem Spaghetti bowl?! That’s right…spaghetti! That’s what all the wires and cables inside a press might remind you of…and have you looked closely at all the pins and cables making up a hot runner system? CableXChecker® gets you to the root of the problem! Plastic injection molding is not for the faint of heart…it is both an art and a science. Hot runner injection molding involves lots of cables, wires and moving parts; these things are sometimes confusing and temperamental. Understanding and repairing this essential equipment is a big deal! So, how do you make the best of trouble shooting this often complicated equipment? Get CableXChecker®! CableXChecker® for the Win First, we want to point out the obvious…that

Low-Investment Molding Solution

Hot Runner Temperature Control: A Low-Investment Molding Solution Processing challenges and mold design considerations amplify the importance of the use of hot runner controls and your molding solution. Before we get started on the subject of using hot runner controls as a wide-reaching molding solution, we thought it worth mentioning where we are economically. The state of the economy absolutely causes lower-cost manufacturing solutions to be even more critical. We already know that tight budgets and supply chain concerns are definitely part of the challenges facing molders and manufacturers today. So, is the US in a recession? Forbes states, “According to the general definition—two consecutive quarters of negative gross domestic product (GDP)—the U.S. entered a recession in the summer of 2022.” How will you ensure that your

Reliable Hot Runner Temperature Control

Pulse technology demonstrates enhanced ergonomic features for accurate and reliable hot runner temperature controllers Catchy intro… Well, we don’t really have one. But to be straightforward…Fast Heat Inc. by Spark Industries is simply the apex of the industry when it comes to reliable hot runner temperature controllers. Gear like the (showcased at Amerimold 2021 exhibit) Pulse reliable hot runner temperature controllers protect heaters and thermocouples. Furthermore, they prevent operator error and allow users to specify production cycles. It's hard to beat Fast Heat when it comes to considering the customer and how the operator uses the injection molding machinery. Plus, Fast Heat’s proprietary Mold and Cable Checker tools complement Pulse controllers. These diagnose hot-half and cable issues. That’s a lot of indispensable assistance in the world

HMI Remote Monitoring and Control

Fast Heat hot runner temperature control industrial offers two options for HMI remote monitoring and control. We first offered VNC Viewer with the advent of newer touchscreen HMIs. Most recently, we have added EasyAccess 2.0 VPN. Here is a brief explanation.VNC Viewer - Same Network ConnectionVNC viewer is a graphical desktop sharing program that allows a PC (client) to connect to another PC or HMI (server) with the VNC server app installed. Once a connection is made, the server sends a duplicate of what is displayed on the PC (or HMI) to the client PC. The client PC remotely controls the PC/HMI. To make a connection, the client PC enters the IP address of the target device. VNC Viewer is a great app if you want to

Sprue Bushings and Heated Nozzles Now Available

Spark Industries Expands Product Line To Include Sprue Bushings and Nozzles We’re seeking to provide as much value to mold builders as possible. Expanding our product line to include integrally heated sprue bushings and nozzles enables tool shops and molders to leverage these proven designs while receiving our hands-on service and support. We also offer custom mold boxes, mold, and cable diagnostics, cables, and of course, our Fast Heat Pulse and Ion hot runner controllers. Integrally heated sprue bushings have a superior heat transfer and can process a wide range of resins. The streamlined flow channel terminates in a reverse taper gate, providing minimum pressure loss and allowing for rapid gate freeze. The formation of a small gate stub on the part or runner results in a

Injection Molding & Design Expo

Injection Molding & Design Expo May 25-26, Detroit MI The Injection Molding and Design expo is an exciting new free-to-attend tradeshow from the people behind Plastics News and Injection World magazines. The expo focuses exclusively on injection molding. The two-day event brings together the complete North American supply chain and provides an amazing opportunity to learn about new products, processes, and equipment. From part and mold design, through process optimization and automation, to finishing and assembly, everyone is represented. Join us at Huntington Place, Detroit, to learn, network, and collaborate. Register for Free. Visit us at Booth # 325 Hot Runner Controller Demos Mold and Cable Checker Demos See Mold Boxes, Cables, and Sprue Bushings Attend our Hot Runner Control Input and Output Communication Presentation Molding the Future Theater Day

Hot Runner Control Input and Output Communication

Hot Runner Control Input-Output Signals Hot runner control input-output signals are a terrific way to integrate hot runner temperature controls with injection molding machines. Further, they can be tied in with robots, conveyors, or other peripheral equipment. The Fast Heat Pulse Controller has four INPUT and OUTPUT channels. The channels are configurable per order, but the INPUT is typically a N/O (normally open) dry contact or a 10-32 DC voltage signal. And, the OUTPUT standard is a N/O (normally open) dry contact. Each OUTPUT channel can have one or more ALARM STATUS or an AT TEMPERATURE notification assigned to activate it. Each INPUT channel is typically assigned to either RUN, STOP, BOOST, or IDLE. Example use cases include but are not limited to: % POWER ALARM

Hot Runner Control Impact on Moldflow Analysis

Consistent Hot Runner Temperature Control is Key We've known for many years that Fast Heat clients value precise hot runner temperature control, especially for engineered resins, glass-filled applications and wide-spec regrinds. These materials require consistent temperature control to achieve "part-to-print" specifications. According to CAE, a leader in Moldflow analysis, altering material characteristics due to inconsistent temperature control is a common cause of warpage. Another aspect of achieving "part-to-print" specifications, as CAE calls it, are process settings. Again, the key to temperature control is not to introduce variation into the process due to fluctuating temperatures. Simply put, the manifold system is merely a passageway for the melt that is already supposed to be plasticized correctly by the injection molding machine. While gate location, gate type/size and sequential

Hot Runner Maintenance Training

Hot Runner Maintenance Training Needs to Include Why Not Just How Onboarding and training new employees on why things are done a certain way and not just how is critical in hot runner temperature control and proper hot runner system management. What does onboarding and training have to do with hot runner controls? First, before we dive into the nuts and bolts of successful hot runner maintenance training, let’s examine the importance of effective on-boarding and of an established training system from a broader viewpoint. We assure you this is not a human resource piece! For just a moment, allow us a little latitude, if you will, to look at humans and how we work. It makes sense in the end, and we will focus on

Pulse Hot Runner Controller Debuts New HMI

Fast Heat by Spark Industries will be debuting an updated human-machine interface (HMI) on their Pulse hot runner controller at Amerimold 2021. The updated controller is standard on all Pulse controllers. Additionally, the new technology's retrofit is available for older versions of the hot runner controller. The features of the updated interface are: Plug and Play- Set/Select your recipe and go Automatic bake-out to prevent shorts Evensoak-ramps up by group, so expansion is even Zone or group set points can be adjusted quickly Auto or manual slave off other thermocouples Temperature, amperage, percent power, thermocouple, and heater condition alarms are easy to see Thermocouple designation can be reassigned if there is a miswire Boost or Idle with one button Security levels can be assigned Why Choose

Injection Molding Best Practices:
What’s All The Hubbub?

In short, best practices are sets of methods and techniques that increase efficiency and develop structured processes with optimal results. Best Practices allow you to streamline procedures and stick to industry standards.

Fast Heat by Spark Industries assists those in the plastic industry in setting up their business for success by following Injection Molding Best Practices and by sharing how you can improve your company’s best practices.

Of course, since you’re here, you probably already know Fast Heat is all about optimizing hot runner injection molding best practices and processes with the utilization of their custom products.

However, just in case you’re new to the world of hot runner applications or injection molding, let’s just start off with a little basic review to get you in the zone:

To start, take a look at this Plastics Technology article that gives a succinct explanation of what a hot runner system is:

First, think of it as an extension of the molding machine itself. Its purpose is to keep the plastic molten at a proper temperature on its path to the cavity. So basically, it’s just a piece of heated steel with a round channel in it for the melt to flow through. Ideally, this channel would be running at the exact temperature on the controller, free of obstacles such as dead spots or components that could create hangups and cause scrap issues with color changes or contamination.

Mod24 Hot Runner Controller

You can check out the full article in PT addressing hot-runner benefits, improvements, and everyday issues from the perspective of decades of experience, A View from the Bottom Up.

After you have examined these standpoints, pop over to peruse how Fast Heat by Spark Industries Hot Runner Controllers will help you achieve the consistency you need.

Another area of importance touched on by PT is heated sprue bushings and how they contribute to a uniform heat profile:

Switching from a Cold Sprue Bushing to a Heated Sprue Bushing

We know there’s really a lot of information out there. Who knew!? But, now you can make an informed decision. Examine Fast Heat’s offerings here and make your choice of Heated Sprue Bushings.

“Hold up,” you say, “not so fast.”

What, not quite ready to pick out controllers, sprue bushings, and Mold Boxes? Do you want to know more? Ok, you know what hot runners do…but why would you want to choose a hot runner mold in the first place…what does it mean for you and your business? No worries, we’re here with more substantiating info:

Top 5 Benefits of Hot Runner Systems:

  • Allow a wider range of resin application
  • Mold more complicated and detailed parts
  • Higher throughput
  • Lower labor costs
  • Reduce scrap

You may also want to check out this article, “Seven Key Advantages of Hot Runner Systems”, by JOHN THIRLWELL, VP OF SALES AND MARKETING, CACO PACIFIC CORP., PUBLISHED IN MOLD MAKING TECHNOLOGY, where, among other advantages, melt flow…one of our favorites, is discussed.

Balanced Melt Flow
The flow advantage that hot runners have is that the melt channels are in separate, externally heated manifolds, which are insulated from the surrounding mold plates. Different from a cold runner plate, the hot manifold can be designed to have flow channels on multiple levels to ensure that the resin flows the same length from the molding machine nozzle to each cavity with the same channel profiles and diameters, number of turns, heat soak and pressure loss (see Figure 1). In other words, the plastic reaches each cavity – whether there are two or 96 – with the same pressure and thermal history. This designed-in temperature and pressure control is particularly favorable for resins that have narrow processing windows.

Injection Molding Best Practice | Balanced Melt Flow Image

Figure 1: Balanced melt flow – a multi-level hot manifold gives equal flow and pressures to all cavities for equal filling

Now, you’ve read the experts’ views, and you’re finally convinced that you have some projects that make sense to convert over to hot runners. But you may also be asking yourself, “How am I going to accomplish this?” Once again, we look to the experts at Mold Making Technology, who provide a helpful summary on:

How to Transition from a Cold to Hot Runner Mold

Moldmakers and molders who use hot runner systems in their molds will be the first to disclose that it is often the most expensive part of the mold build. But they quickly add that it is worth the investment based on reduced cycle time, resin cost, elimination of post-processing, product lifecycle, etc.

Finally! You have your hot runner mold projects in place! Ok, we know it isn’t quite as easy as that…it will be a process…but once you do get your projects transitioned, you will want to know more about what Fast Heat can do for you. How are you going to benefit from Fast Heat by Spark Industries once you have decided to go with a hot runner tool?

Our Best Practices blogs will help answer how Fast Heat by Spark Industries will be of value, and you can check them out in their entirety with the provided links. We have also included some useful connections directly to our product pages. Of course, you can always CONTACT US with any specific questions.

Highlighting Injection Molding Best Practices | Fast Heat by Spark Industries

Hot Runner Temperature Controllers Boost Productivity and Quality

This may seem like stating the obvious, but if you can cover or “control” variables from nozzle to cavity, you are definitely reducing the likelihood of problems with your parts and everything in between. Mold manufacturers that install a quality temperature controller on a hot runner system will not only lengthen a mold’s life but will help improve part quality…it’s just that simple.

Fast Heat by Spark Industries will increase your efficiency and, ultimately, your bottom line.

Additionally, you can read about the Pulse Hot Runner Controller Pulse Hot Runner Controller and its related alarms in a troubleshooting menagerie that introduces some concepts such as “bake out” and why you need to address it in Troubleshooting.

Hot Runner Performance

Fast Heat by Spark Industries | Pulse Hot Runner Controller

Hot Runner performance is critical to maintaining production schedules and eliminating costly downtime.. Having the tools to ensure your hot runner performance is peak is where Spark Industries comes in.

Manny Diaz developed the MoldXChecker®as a result of feedback from customers who stated they would like to be able to test the hot half and the associated elements more quickly. Also, for obvious reasons, they would like less experienced employees to be able to manage the task without extensive training. Save time; save cash!

Manny Diaz, Managing Partner of Fast Heat by Spark Industries, and inventor of the CableXChecker® , was constantly running into the issue of showing up at companies to do maintenance and having no available cables to use to troubleshoot the hot half of the mold; the cables that were known to be good where always already in use on the floor.

And to avoid those Cable Connection Problems from the get-go:

You can accomplish some quick fixes… and one significant change with great results is to include 24-pin male and female connectors; unlike your 25-pin connectors, these 24-pin connect24-pin male and female connectorors are heavy-duty. The pins won’t bend or get pushed back and are rated for 16 amps. They also have screw terminations and are much easier to connect to mating mold boxes, cables, or controllers. Take a look at the original article for a detailed diagram of the Anatomy of a Connector MoldMaking Technology Article and further tips.

Fast Heat by Spark Industries has answers for all of your hot runner controller and hot runner cable needs. Make us your go-to guys. We are here for all your questions; it’s what we do!

The last Fast Heat item we want to share with you today is regarding screw tip assemblies. Material and Design are key elements of consideration, and there really aren’t any BAD tips, per se. But you have to figure out what tip is best for your specific job. What resins are you running? What material is your tip going to be made of, and what type of design is going to benefit you most? Fast Heat can help! There are literally hundreds of options out there from which you can choose, but we encourage you to take a look at these manufactured by Zeiger Industries, Screw-Tip Assemblies.

Here at Fast Heat, we look at publications like Plastics Technology and Mold Making Technology for guidance in all things plastic. We want to add one other PT piece we think you may find valuable, Tips to Help You Succeed with Hot Runners. Having said that, we have thrown a lot of information at you, and we had you roaming cyberspace to and fro…but, in the end, we think you will agree that Fast Heat by Spark Industries is also a great resource. For all things related to Injection Molding Best Practices, we want to be your 1st Resource!

Check Out Our Productivity Series!


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