Plastic is one of the most important inventions of our time. It has changed the way that many things are made and has made the mass manufacturing of certain items much easier. It has also created somewhat of an ecological crisis, especially in the US, but we’ll come back to that when we talk a little bit about recycling. Most of our custom cases are made from hard, tough plastics. Have you ever wondered how plastic is created? The process is very interesting and parts of it might surprise you.
General Making of Plastics
Plastics are made out of oils that contain monomers and polymers, which are eventually combined to create different types of plastic. Plastic makers start with the raw materials and oils. They undergo reactions and chemical processing to extract the correct particles for making plastic. The main element that goes into making plastics is hydrocarbon. These hydrocarbon monomers go to plants where they undergo more chemical reactions to be changed into polymers that may receive dyes and chemicals. When plastic is first made, it’s generally processed into small pellets or beads.
We use rotational and injection molding at Advanced Packaging Inc., but there are other types of conventional molding for plastic as well.
- Extrusion – Plastic films (like the ones on your DVD or CD cases) are created using extrusion. Pellets are heated down and mixed together, pushed through a small opening and then cooled. Most of the time, the cooling is done with either air or water.
- Blow molding – Blow molding isn’t usually done on its own, but is used with rotational or injection molding processes. Pellets will be heated down and squeezed into a cold mold. Air will then come down the tube that the melted plastic was squeezed through and expand the plastic so it molds to the sides of the walls.
- Rotational molding and injection molding – Check out some of our other blogs to learn more about these types of molding. These are what we use to create our durable cases. They’re both tried and true methods that have been working for us for decades.
The creation of plastic is fascinating, if not a little difficult to understand. One important thing to note about plastic is that it is recyclable. Since it can be melted down and molded into other objects, it’s a useful substance. It falls on us to be more responsible about recycling this resource rather than letting it take over our landfills – when used properly, plastic is a great asset. To learn more about how plastic is made or to purchase custom cases from Advanced Packaging Inc., call 888-206-5250, stop in, or visit our website today!
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