You might not want to worry about setting mold protection on your equipment because there is no single easy method to set the mold protection and because it can take time away from other tasks that you might be working on. However, mold protection is one way that you can save your company a ton of money due to the fact that, by setting the protection, you will break fewer molds and therefore spend less money replacing them. Here are some tips for setting injection mold protection so that you waste less time and money replacing the molds themselves. Although every process is different, there are a few generic steps that apply to most, if not all, processes.
1. Program the Mold Closing Sequence
The goal of mold closing protection is to make sure that the mold does not close on something that is still touching the mold kiss and cause damage to that item, as well as to the mold itself. You want the mold to be able to sense that there is some obstacle there and then stop closing. Because the molds do not have sensors inside of them, the mold closing settings are going to require the machine that is holding the mold to recognize that there is something in the way because the mold is experiencing pressure on the kiss before it is supposed to.
To program the mold closing sequence, start the mold closing at a pressure and speed that is just enough to get the mold to close on its own. You do not want the machine to jump at this time. Then, accelerate slightly until you get to between one and two seconds before the machine should detect the mold detail that needs to be looked at, for example the mold pin in the machine that is checking for obstacles. At this time point, you should start slowing down so that you don't crash the mold shut and so that you can stop if there is something in the way. This might take a few extra seconds each time you have to close a mold but will save you the actual creation time of a mold in the long run.
2. Check the Programming
Take cardboard boxes or foam cups and stack them up so that they are at the height of the mold detail that you want to protect. Then, start the closing mechanism. Retrieve the boxes or cups and see what they look like. If they are flat, then the mold closed all the way and did not protect the detail. You will need to reprogram the machine. If they are a little bit scrunched but relatively intact, then your programming was fine.
For more information, talk to a company that specializes in plastic molding, such as Qualicase Ltd.
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