Bellows are rubber or plastic covers made in a specific way to protect industrial equipment and machinery from spillage and any other damage due to shocks, vibration, and so on. There are many types of bellows and they serve various purposes. These bellows are made using various techniques and machining processes such as welding, cold forming, hydroforming, and more. One of the widely used techniques to manufacture bellows is dip molding. Apart from precision, this process improves the aesthetic appeal of bellows. This post discusses the technique to make custom dip molded bellows.
What is Dip Molding?
Like many other techniques, this is a process in which a mold of heated metal is dipped into a container of polymer in liquid form. Various flexible and partly flexible mold parts of several shapes and sizes can dipped into this container. The dipping material can be any sort of polymer such as PVC, nitrile rubber, silicone, and so on. The benefit here is you can make durable parts in your budget as there is hardly any tooling required. So, the tooling charges are minimal or even eliminated. Also, dip molding is versatile and you can make parts with various colors or even combinations such as black, gray, white, green, and red. You can form various geometric shapes with this process, and the parts look polished and refined with an amazing finish. As such, only aluminum tooling is necessary in this process and is ideal for flexible molding applications. The aluminum tooling is preheated and mounted on the dip molding machine. This molding machine mobilizes the tooling over the polymer-filled container. The tool is then dipped into the polymer material, which gathers on the tool surface due to the heat. The timeframe for dipping of the tools depends upon the wall thickness needed for the application. Once these tools are taken out of the polymer container, they are cured in the oven. Once cured, the dried and cooled moldings are removed through air compression. Various types of custom dip molded bellows can be created easily.
Benefits of Custom Dip Molding Bellows
Here are some benefits of using custom dip molding bellows.
- As mentioned, they can be easily customized to suit specific requirements even if it means complex geometries.
- They can be made quickly in short lead times, especially because of minimal tooling.
- These bellows are durable and cost-effective.
- You can make large parts with the required texture and color in a modest budget.
- The technique eliminates any internal stress on molded parts.
Applications of Dip Molded Bellows
These bellows, since they can be easily made in custom shapes and sizes, find applications in diverse industries. Here are some of their application areas
- Gear rods in automotive
- Grips and seals
- Electrical insulation
- Equipment and machine covers for prevention from corrosion, dirt, and so on
If you are an OEM looking for dip molded custom bellows for your machines and equipment, it is crucial that you get them done from an experienced bellows manufacturer who would understand your requirements and customize them to suit your needs. Nabell USA Corp is a well-known player making custom bellows and way covers to suit specific application requirements. The company does not believe in a one-size-fits-all approach and hence does not really have any standard products.