Rubber Molding: The Solution to Material Bonding Challenges

When chemical reactions between incompatible materials prevent proper adhesion, rubber molding can provide a solution to the dilemma. It enables bonding of rubber to metal and more. Some of the products in which the technology is applied are vibration mounts, grommets, bellows, bumpers, tips, pulley wheels, boots, connector elbows, seals and valves.

In addition, rubber molding manufacturers offer custom engineered parts to fit any design. Leveraging the expertise and experience of such a provider ensures that the end product is compatible with the application for which it will be used.

What’s more, rubber to metal and rubber to substrate precision bonding parts that are manufactured in the United States afford business owners even more advantages. The Made in the USA stamp assures a level of service and quality that foreign rubber molding providers cannot provide. With a U.S. rubber molding partner, there is no more waiting weeks or months for parts from China, which may not even be up to snuff once they arrive, to reach your doorstep.

There are three types of rubber molding manufacturing processes. Namely, they are rubber injection molding, rubber compression molding and rubber transfer molding. What follows is a brief discussion of the differences between the three.

  1. Rubber injection molding originated during the 1960s. As an extension of the plastics industry it evolved as a means of overcoming the pressure and temperature challenges that arose when bonding rubber. Today it is often recognized as the most efficient means of molding rubber. Injection molding can also be combined with transfer molding into a hybrid process.
  2. Rubber transfer molding is another type of bonding that uses compression. Parts that are molded this way are made from rubber that is compressed by way of a plunger. This plunging action pushes the rubber into the desired part’s cavity where it takes its intended shape. This type of rubber molding can be extremely cost-saving thanks to the ability to use the same pre-form for multiple cavities. In fact, its only real disadvantage is the wasted material that remains behind during the transfer process. For eco-conscious business owner, however, this rubber can be recycled.
  3. As the name implies, rubber compression molding also uses compression to achieve the desired end product. The process has been around for well over a century and it has remained virtually unchanged since its inception. Like transfer molding, compression molding involves rubber pre-forms that are shaped like the finished product. These forms are then 1) molded, 2) the rubber is allowed to cure and finally 3) the form is demolded. This type of rubber molding is cost-effective in three specific scenarios:
    • When the business owner already has the required compression molding tooling in place.
    • When the required output is a very limited quantity.
    • When a large cross-section part must be cured for a long period of time.
      Which of these rubber molding options is right for you depends on your specific circumstances. When contending with newly designed parts, consult a rubber molding expert for advice on the best and most cost-effective way to solve your bonding issues.

Post time: 03-01-2017