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  • Writer's pictureBhoomit Panchal

How to Enhance Your Operations with Fixed-Type Vertical Injection Moulding Machines



Introduction


Fixed-type vertical injection moulding machines are designed with a single mould used for production, where both the mould open and close functions, as well as the injection unit, operate vertically.


These machines are renowned for their user-friendliness, requiring minimal learning curves compared to other types of vertical injection moulding machines. Fixed-type VIMs are particularly well-suited for small-scale production, offering a cost-effective solution.

The machine cycle follows a specific sequence once the mould is set up inside the clamping area:


  1. Mould Close

  2. Mould Clamping

  3. Injection

  4. Refilling

  5. Cooling

  6. Mould Open

  7. Ejection



The new generation of fixed-type vertical injection moulding machines can significantly boost your production efficiency while maximizing safety and reducing production costs.

In this blog, we will explore the advantages of fixed-type vertical injection moulding machines, ensuring your production needs are met. We will discuss selecting the right machine model for your application, maximizing machine usage, training and skill development, and optimizing the production process for maximum output.



The Greendrive series of fixed-type vertical injection moulding machines are designed to provide class-leading operational efficiency, features, and reliability. With a total vertical construction, these machines occupy minimal floor space, making them ideal for facilities with limited space.


Key Advantages:


  • Ease of Transition: The learning curve for shifting from other injection moulding machines to fixed-type vertical injection moulding machines is minimal. The less complex design and user-friendly controller interface significantly reduce setup times.

  • Efficient Clamping: The 4-tie bar clamping area ensures uniform distribution of clamping force across the entire mould.

  • Precise Control: With precise heating control over the injection barrel (tolerances of 2°C), the material flow and processing control are optimized. The fast and accurate injection control ensures precise filling of the mould cavity.

  • Vertical Ejector: This feature efficiently ejects moulded components from the mould once the process is complete.


Advanced Controller Features:


  • User-Friendly Interface: The advanced controller offers numerous features that are easy to set up and provide comprehensive information for optimizing the production process. It includes machine-related telemetry and is Euromap-ready for easy integration with automation and robotic attachments.

  • Flexible Clamping Control: The Greendrive hydraulic system allows for highly controlled mould clamping, accommodating various preferences such as increased mould safety, fast open/close, smooth open/close, or step open/close.


Greendrive Core System:


  • High Precision and Efficiency: The Greendrive system ensures high precision and efficiency, meeting all production requirements.


  • Energy Savings: This system can provide up to 60% energy savings compared to older models of vertical injection moulding machines.


  • Longer Machine Life: The Greendrive system enhances operational efficiency and extends machine operation life, resulting in lower maintenance and better service life.


Ideal Applications:


The Greendrive series is perfect for smaller production needs or products with longer lengths, including:


  • Industrial and commercial cables

  • Automotive components

  • USB cables

  • Appliance power cords

  • Surgical equipment/tools

  • Consumer electronics

  • LED light modules

  • Kitchen equipment (knives, utensils, chopping boards, etc.)

  • Overmoulding applications where plastic is moulded with other components, with low to medium production requirements


Step 1: Understanding Your Production Needs


Production output for the machine can be calculated using several factors, including component size, weight, material, machine operation cycle time, number of mould cavities, and working hours.


For example, if your ideal cycle time is 30 seconds and the number of mould cavities is 4, you will produce 4 complete moulded components every 30 seconds. With a total working time of 12 hours, you can produce over 5,700 complete pieces in that period. Here's the calculation:


  1. Cycle Time: 30 seconds

  2. Mould Cavities: 4

  3. Working Hours: 12 hours (43,200 seconds)


Total Components= 43,200 seconds / 30 seconds per cycle × 4 = 5,760 components


It's important to note that calculating the total cycle time can be complex due to various factors. The ideal calculation is based on a 30-second cycle time, but your mould manufacturer and designer can provide an estimated cycle time to help calculate the production output more accurately.


If you need assistance determining the estimated cycle time for your components, please reach out to us, and we will be happy to help.


This is the estimated production output, also you actual production output can also depend on other factors, such as operator efficiency, auxiliary equipment used, cooling equipment and much more.


Step 2: Selecting the Right Model for Your Application


Choosing the right fixed-type vertical injection moulding machine for your application involves considering two primary factors: clamping requirements and injection requirements.


Clamping Requirements


Determining Clamping Force: The clamping force needed is based on your mould size and the ideal force required for the mould. It is advisable to increase the clamping force by approximately 30% to ensure optimal performance.


Mould Size Compatibility: The physical size of the mould determines whether it will fit within the machine's clamping area. Machines are designed so that the mould sizes correspond to specific clamping forces. For example, a mould measuring 400x400x250mm (LxWxH) would ideally fit an SV 60 Fix machine with a 60-ton clamping unit, where the maximum mould size compatibility is 450x450x400mm, and the maximum clamping force is 60 tons.


Custom Designs: In cases where the mould size is small but requires high clamping force, or vice versa, a custom-designed machine may be necessary. These custom machines are tailored to meet specific clamping and mould size requirements.


Injection Requirements


After selecting the clamping unit, the next step is to choose the appropriate injection unit. Several factors influence this choice:


  • Shot Weight: The amount of material needed to fill the mould cavity and produce the component. To determine the shot weight, weigh the plastic part if you have a physical sample, or use CAD software to calculate the volume and multiply by the material density. Example:


  • Piece weight: 50 grams

  • Number of cavities: 10

  • Runner weight: 80 grams

  • Total shot weight: 50×10+80=58050 \times 10 + 80 = 58050×10+80=580 grams


  • Material Used: The type of material affects the injection unit selection. Different materials require different screw barrel types and densities, influencing shot weight settings.


  • Injection Pressure Requirements: This technical aspect ensures the components receive the required injection pressure. Generally, smaller screw barrels provide higher injection pressure, while larger barrels offer lower pressure.


  • Heating Method: Specialized heating methods may be necessary depending on the material, such as oil-heated barrels, barrels with heater blowers, or multi-zone heating control.


  • Screw Barrel Material: The material choice for the screw barrel depends on the processed material. Options include EN41b, nitrided, hard chrome plated, or bimetallic barrels. Nitrided barrels are hardened for longer life, hard chrome plating provides a smooth surface to prevent material sticking, and bimetallic barrels offer durability and performance, especially for engineering materials.


Conclusion: Selecting the right fixed-type vertical injection moulding machine involves a thorough understanding of both clamping and injection requirements. By considering factors such as clamping force, mould size, shot weight, material type, injection pressure, heating methods, and screw barrel material, you can ensure the optimal machine for your production needs.


Or contact us with some basic information and we will help you select the ideal machine for your application.


Step 4: Training and Skill Development


Using a machine to its full potential requires a skilled operator who is properly trained and understands the machine's operations, limits, and functions.


Greendrive fixed-type vertical injection moulding machines, while user-friendly, still require proper training to ensure safe and efficient operation. Without adequate training, there is a risk of damage to the machine and moulds, as well as potential harm to the operator.


During installation, we provide comprehensive training to the machine operator. However, for operators to fully grasp and utilize the machine’s capabilities, they need a foundational understanding of injection moulding machines. Key areas of focus include:


  • Material Properties and Processing Data: Understanding the properties of different materials and how they behave during processing is crucial for optimizing production and ensuring quality.


  • Mould Setup: Properly setting up moulds inside the clamping area ensures efficient and accurate moulding cycles.


  • Temperature Settings: Setting up the correct temperature ranges for heating zones is vital for maintaining material integrity and achieving desired results.


  • Clamping Requirements: Knowing the clamping requirements for different moulds and materials helps in maintaining consistency and preventing damage.


  • Injection Moulding Process Cycle: A thorough understanding of the injection moulding cycle is essential for troubleshooting and optimizing production.


  • Machine and Mould Care: Regular maintenance and proper care of machines and moulds extend their operational life and ensure continuous high-quality output.


  • Injection Pressure and Speed: Understanding and setting the appropriate injection pressure and speed is crucial for achieving precise moulding results.


  • Material Flow: Knowledge of material flow inside the mould helps in identifying and resolving potential issues that could affect product quality.


Resources for Skill Development and Training Programs


To maximize the potential of the Greendrive fixed-type vertical injection moulding machines, operators should engage in ongoing training and skill development. Recommended resources and training programs include:


  • Manufacturer-Provided Training: Take advantage of the training sessions provided by the machine manufacturer during installation. These sessions offer hands-on experience and direct insights from experts.

  • Online Courses and Webinars: Numerous online platforms offer courses and webinars on injection moulding. Websites like Coursera, Udemy, and LinkedIn Learning have courses that cover the basics of advanced techniques.

  • Industry Certifications: Enroll operators in certification programs offered by industry bodies such as the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE), CIPET, and many more. These certifications validate the operator's skills and knowledge.

  • Technical Schools and Colleges: Partner with local technical schools or colleges that offer courses in plastics engineering and injection moulding, Such As CIPET.

  • Workshops and Seminars: Attend workshops and seminars organized by industry associations. These events provide opportunities to learn about the latest technologies and best practices.

  • In-House Training Programs: Develop an in-house training program that includes regular refresher courses, practical demonstrations, and assessments to ensure operators stay up-to-date with the latest practices.


Conclusion


Selecting the right fixed-type vertical injection moulding machine, such as the Greendrive series, is crucial for optimizing your production processes. These machines offer exceptional operational efficiency, advanced features, and reliability, making them ideal for various applications, including industrial cables, automotive components, and consumer electronics.


Key Considerations:


  1. Clamping and Injection Requirements: Understand the clamping force needed for your mould size and the injection unit requirements based on factors like shot weight, material used, and injection pressure. Proper selection ensures the machine meets your production needs.

  2. Calculating Production Output: Accurate calculation of production output involves considering cycle time, mould cavities, and working hours. For example, with a 30-second cycle time and 4 cavities, a 12-hour working period can yield over 5,700 components .

  3. Employee Training: Effective operation and maintenance of these machines require skilled operators. Comprehensive training provided at installation, along with ongoing skill development through online courses, industry certifications, technical school programs, and in-house training, ensures operators are well-equipped to maximize machine potential.



By focusing on these aspects, you can enhance the efficiency, safety, and productivity of your manufacturing operations. Investing in the right equipment and ensuring proper training will lead to better production quality, longer machine lifespan, and overall success in meeting your production goals.


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