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AKI’s High Surface Finish Cosmetics

Surface Finish Encapsulates the degree of roughness and variation on the surfaces of a part.

For a great deal of the external products which we mould at A K Industries, how a part looks and feels cosmetically is our primary consideration. This is especially true of the shower industry, in which we have more than 20 years of experience.

There are four major drivers in the cosmetic appearance of your part; without considering them all you may find that a product ends up with dull, glossy, or hazy areas, or has a rippled surface. Amongst many other issues which we have encountered.

The geometry, the choice of material, the design of the tool, and the processing parameters during the injection process all need to be considered when designing a part where appearance is of paramount importance. Whilst the designer of the product has complete control over geometry and resin selection, it is the moulder that typically has the largest input into the design of the mould tool.

Through our vast experience we have found that when involved from the very beginning of a parts life cycle, we are better able to advise on how best to achieve the perfect Surface Finish for an injection moulded cosmetic product. This is as a result of a great many problems arising from the design of the mould tool. By being involved in the development of a mould tool we can propose gate and vent locations so as to optimise resin flow and prevent the cosmetic problems that arise as a result of the path or paths resin entry or flow takes in filling the mould tool.

We have found that the issue of surface finish is very much subjective, which complicates issues greatly, and relies upon good relationships and communications between ourselves, our customer and the mould tool designer. As a result of so many years of experience we are extremely confident in our abilities to produce moulded parts that exceed our customer’s expectations every time.

Historically at A K Industries, a great deal of our post-moulding experience has been within Pad Printing as a result of many years supplying the shower industry. Pad Printing on site has been carried out on 1, 2 and 3 colour pad printers as well as our 5-colour CNC printing machine. All machines are microprocessor controlled and each colour that is printed onto the parts is done using a separate pad so that the printing can be built up gradually, ensuring each colour is perfectly printed.

Pad Printing is a cost effective way to print parts, yet is also a highly reliable process and can produce parts to a very high standard. There are many benefits to incorporating Pad Printing into your post moulding operations:

  • Attractive mouldings
  • Added component value
  • High level of quality
  • Ease of handling
  • Variety of printable surfaces
  • Printing on uneven surfaces
  • Wet-on-wet multi- colour printing

Through our exceptionally advanced technical abilities we are also able to produce plastic parts which can then be subjected to any finishing process that a customer may require:

Plating – electrochemical process of creating electrically conductive parts

Electrolytic Plating – creates bright chrome surfaces

Vacuum Metalizing – physical process of creating electrically conductive parts

Hot Stamping –heated dies transfer ink from a foil film into the surface of a part

In working with A K Industries, you provide the initial design and own the final product. Between beginning and end, however, we offer input that can be used to fine-tune what will become the end-result. You can use the information that we provide during quotation and moulding processes to modify your part, refining the design to achieve the best possible cosmetic outcome.

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A K Industries
+44 (0) 1432 375100
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Related Post  AKI – High Definition Printing on High Surface Finish components
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