HASCO "HOT BASE", Customized System Solutions

Project example "Steering Wheel"

As a project partner, HASCO supports its customers from the product idea until the production start. Beside advisory service, technical application support and service during sampling, HASCO offers a unique package of innovative hot runner technology, the most extensive range of standards worldwide and tailor made high-precision molds. The service range is rounded off by project and supply management on a global level. The example of the "Steering Wheel" mold base shows how individual
"HOT BASE" projects can be solved today.

In a close cooperation between HASCO, Engel and Innotech, an innovative production solution for the economical manufacturing of a sophisticated, decorative product with metal insert was developed for presentation at the NPE 2006 in Chicago.

The product:
The "Steering Wheel" product is a promotional desktop utensil for holding pens, note slips, business cards, paper clips and other useful small objects. The product incorporates a base and top part with an over molded stainless steel insert. Both molded parts are assembled with snap-on connectors.

The project partners:

HASCO: Project support, hot half with special needle valve systems, mold structure, standards, innovative accessories.
HASCO Canada took over the project coordination in close cooperation with Engel and Innotech. The design of the hot runner system and the hot side was created completely in 3D with Unigraphics by the HASCO hot runner team at the headquarters in Lüdenscheid. The hot side was manufactured at HASCO America in Asheville, NC. HASCO Asheville also supplied the complete mold structures and all the necessary standard parts including the innovative flexible sealing element A4200/... for flash-free over molding of the metal insert.

Innotech, Canada: Article design, mold design and mold construction.
Innotech Precision Inc, Scarborough, Ontario, Canada is a renowned precision mold builder and specializes in the manufacture of complex surfaces as well as insertion tools and hybrid technology. The mold is designed in VISI CAD with integrated HASCO standards software. Innotech built the complete tool using HASCO standards and a HASCO hot side in close cooperation with all project partners.

Engel North America: New vertical machine concept.
At the NPE 2006, Engel presented the new insert machine series in the Automotive section which is offered both with a horizontally and vertically arranged injection unit. The "Steering Wheel" tool runs on a vertical machine Insert IN 330H/100US.

Production technology / mold concept:
Two moving halves are mounted on the turn-table of the vertical machine with offset workstations at 180°. The hot half is mounted to the vertical clamping unit. The two moving halves allow constant production flow. While finished parts are removed and metal inserts are positioned on one workstation, molding is taking place on the other. These simultaneous work processes result in a significant cycle time reduction. The tool is designed as a family mold. The top and bottom parts of the pen holder are molded simultaneously. The application requires an active gating control for the valve gate nozzles because of the large part weight differences. A valve actuated sprue bushing is used to prevent drooling while the horizontal injection unit backs away from the sprue during mold opening.

Special features of the mold:
New, flexible HASCO A4200/... sealing elements made of special plastic Murseal® enable damage free insertion of metal inserts as well as flash free over molding of the metal insert. Murseal® elastical properties provide a high resetting capacity. It is resistant against deformation during injection molding and provides compensation for tolerance variations. Attention has been paid to the consistent use of standardized mold standards. This considerably reduced the tool manufacture time.

Special features of the hot runner:
The family tool application incorporates an active gating control for the valve gate nozzles due to the large differences in shot weight. Balance is achieved by keeping the tope gate closed until about 90% of the part volume of the bottom component is processed. By adjusting the opening and closing times the filling of both parts can be actively controlled.

The manifold was stepped to accommodate standard length nozzles thereby compensation for different heights being molded. The system is designed to support the horizontal force placed on it by the machine injection unit. A valve actuated sprue bushing is used to prevent drooling when the horizontal injection unit drives away from the sprue during mold opening. Guidance of the valve pin uses a special bushing with cylindrical seal and guide element.

The HASCO Techni Shot nozzles Z3340/... have a uniform temperature profile and are ideal for processing materials with a narrow processing window. The nozzles are designed to guide the valve pins accurately and centre them before they dive into the gate. This prolongs the life of the valve pin as well as the gate contour in the mold. A completely tested and guaranteed hot half was supplied ready for assembly. HASCO - excellence without compromise.

Special features of the machine:
The new insert series from Engel was designed specially for the rational production of hybrid parts and is offered with either a horizontal or vertical injection unit. The horizontal version is used in the described application. Special advantages of this new machine type are a large turn-table for clamping larger tools and the high rotation speed to reduce cycle times. The low operating height provides an ergonomic working position. The press offers an optional automatically adjustable injection unit for greater flexibility in the tool design and tool change.

The close cooperation between the project partners produced a technical sophisticated production solution in the shortest time possible. The HASCO "HOT BASE" was a fundamental factor for the success.

Ralf Ronge / Annette Lampe
HASCO Hasenclever GmbH + Co KG
Tel. 02351/957-500 oder 957-503

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