The Rotational Molding Process

Rotational molding, also known as rotomolding or rotocasting, is a small part of the plastics industry and the least known of the plastics processes in use today. Most Engineering courses only touch very briefly on the rotational molding process while focusing primarily on training new engineers to design for the Injection, Blow Molding, and Vacuum Forming processes. The rotational molding process however offers much in the way of design flexibility and scale of products, with products ranging from simple bulk storage containers to sophisticated automotive, medical, and aerospace applications. The rotational molding process was actually developed in the early 1900’s but was limited in the plastic materials available at the time.  The process became more widely used in the 1950’s as a broader range of materials became available. Polyethylene resins are now the most commonly used materials. Other options include Nylon’s, PVC, EVA, and Cross-Linked Polyethylene.

 

Rotational molding lends itself to hollow, complex forms like no other process. Small parts, such as medical pipette bulbs can be made in essentially the same manner as large boats. Intricate parts, such as fuel tanks and components for aircraft ducting are becoming more common as rotational molding is recognized by a broader group of designers and engineers.  Products need to be specifically designed for manufacture from this unique process. Working directly with a Design Engineer trained in this process at the beginning of the product development phase will assure a smooth and successful transition of your products into the rotational molding process.

 

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