We carry extensive stock of common plastic profiles that will satisfy many requirements, as well as many non-stock tools for a huge range of other profiles, but there are occasions when a custom production run is necessary:
- Volume - normally 1000m+, although it is sometimes cost-effective to run 500m+ runs for larger profiles
- Tooling required - see our tooling page for details
- Non-standard cut lengths - our stock lengths are typically 3m, 2.54m, 2.44m and 1.83m
- Non-standard colour - see our colours page for details
- Minor variation to a standard profile - drawing down (see below), angling legs inwards on a channel, applying self-adhesive tape inline, for example
Whatever your requirement, we may already have or may be able to make the ideal extrusion solution -the first step is to browse the Production Tooling which is listed below Stock on each product page, and then contact our Sales team. We are always happy to discuss your ideas and advise on the feasibility of extruding them - never from the point of view of knowing your business better than you, but our experience may allow us to add value to your design.
There are some basic considerations that affect all plastic extrusions:
PLASTIC EXTRUSION DESIGN CRITERIA
- Drawing down - This is a technique where profile dimensions can be reduced in proportion by up to 10% during production. This can enable us to provide a profile slightly smaller than one in our stock range without additional tooling costs
- Even wall thickness - an even thickness throughout will generally produce the best results, as material flows better through the tool during production. It also helps prevent cooling at different rates within the finished profile, which can lead to bowing
- Detailing - tiny or unnecessary detail can slow down production and add to tooling and production costs
- Mating parts - where your profile is designed to mate with other products, these should be provided to help the drawing and tooling process. This will also allow testing during production
- Profile Size - we are limited by the size of our extrusion machinery to producing profiles up to about 70mm along the largest dimension
- Length tolerances - if possible, allow for some tolerance in the length of your extrusion. Cutting to a perfect length during extrusion can be difficult as PVC expands and contracts at different temperatures. Offline cutting is more accurate, but creates swarf and adds cost. Typical tolerance for a 1m length is +/- 1mm, and the maximum cut length is generally 4m
We hope these pointers are useful, but please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss your design.