Photo by MBFZ Toolcraft The top housing shell moulded by Toolcraft consists of a demanding hard/soft material combination.
Germany-based injection moulding and mould making firm MBFZ Toolcraft has created a complete two-component injection moulding solution – from the design and selection of materials through to the creation of finished and qualified products – for hearing aid manufacturer Unitron.
Toolcraft says that it provided certified production processes to Unitron, to assist in giving it high-quality and reliable products.
The top housing shell consists of a hard/soft material combination. The hard component consists of PA12, with a thermoplastic elastomer used as the soft component. Toolcraft also manufactures a battery compartment and a push-button for the assembly.
To ensure the economic efficiency of the application, the goal was to develop an extremely reliable mould for the integrated moulding process. The parts required extremely tight clearances for accuracy of fit as well as repeatable injection for smallest shot weights. And a perfect alignment of hard and soft components was necessary.
The construction of a 1+1 component precision mould followed the development of automated manufacturing as part of the 2-component injection moulding process.
Designing and programming the 2-component injection moulding machine was the next step. The Arburg Allrounder A470S 2K machine was outfitted with an integrated quality assurance system including a camera and a robot that sets down the parts on a conveyor belt. In so doing, the robot separates the trays so that expert personnel can then proceed with packaging.
The concept was implemented as part of a close cooperation between Arburg and Toolcraft’s engineering, mould making and injection moulding departments.
Engineering such a complex mould, as well as the manufacture of parts with fine and small contours, proved to be demanding for the team and time was tight. But all problems were ironed out before mass production began. And large production runs have now ensued.
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