Exceptional Precision with Low-Pressure Filling & Reduced Clamp Force
Sumitomo (SHI) Demag’s Z-Molding provides exceptional injection molding precision with low-pressure filling and reduced clamp force. By shifting the focus to low-pressure filling and reduced clamp force, molders can achieve combined benefits in precision, part cost and overall productivity. Play the video below or scroll down the page for more information on the three unique systems of Z-Molding.
Z-Molding brings together three unique systems:
- Flow Front Control (FFC) system that achieves complete and balanced filling with reduced injection pressure. FFC takes advantage of the energy in the flow front of the resin to complete filling in an even fashion as opposed to forcing material into open areas and thus flashing the areas that were already filled.
- Minimum Clamping Molding (MCM) system that reduces clamp force requirements and ensures optimized venting of gases and flash-free molding. MCM allows the machine to automatically detect the minimum point at which the mold halves are completely parallel and defines the threshold where flash-free molding can occur and the optimum point at which the best cavity venting exists.
- Simple Process Setting (SPS) system that provides fast, guided setup, ease of use and machine optimization
The chart below shows the benefits provided by the Flow Front Control (FFC), Minimum Clamping Molding (MCM) and Simple Process Setting (SPS) systems.
Z-Molding is only available on Sumitomo (SHI) Demag SE and CL Series all-electric injection molding machines.
Z-Molding’s Flow Front Control (FFC) System
FFC, working together with the ISC II (Intelligent Servo Control) and the direct-drive injection motor, achieves complete and balanced filling with reduced injection pressure. The system takes advantage of the energy and viscoelastic properties in the flow front of the resin to complete filling in an even fashion as opposed to forcing material into open areas and thus flashing the areas that are already filled.
Advantages provided by FFC include:
- Precision control of screw position to ensure consistent filling
- In addition to preventing flash, maintaining low internal pressures in the cavities allows venting of gases to prevent short shots
- Improved cavity balance and consistent part weight across high cavity molds or difficult-to-fill unbalanced/family molds
In conventional molding, by forcing resin into the mold cavities, overfilling and compression occur at the inner cavities and gases are trapped.
FFC precisely controls screw position at VP switchover to balance fill speed and pressure across all cavities. Problems associated with overfilling and trapped gases do not occur.
Fast response control of speed and pressure before and after VP switchover allows complete filling with low pressure.
Compared with standard molding, FFC achieves complete filling with no flash at the same injection pressure.
Z-Molding’s Minimum Clamping Molding (MCM) System
MCM helps molders improve part quality while reducing clamp force requirements. When the MCM system is switched on, the machine automatically detects the minimum point at which the mold halves are completely parallel and surface pressure is evenly distributed across the mold faces.
Auto MCM is selected on the one-page Mold Setup screen. Using the detected MCM values and knowledge of the molding process, the desired clamp tonnage is entered.
MCM System benefits include:
- Avoidance of burn spots and short shots
- Reduction in trapped gases reduces mold wear/maintenance and downtime
- Lower clamp force can reduce machine wear and power consumption and improve cycle times
MCM works together with the machine’s Clamp Force Feedback Control System (below). This system continually monitors clamp tonnage using a sensor on the tie bar to measure actual clamp tonnage. Unlike systems that rely solely on measurement of the mold space, this system works together with a control device, encoder and a high-performance servomotor, automatically compensating for thermal expansion of the mold and keeping clamping force constantly stable.
Z-Molding’s Simple Process Setting (SPS) System
SPS allows easy setup and operation and helps the operator avoid oversights and mistakes that can cause part quality problems, scrap and mold damage. With SPS, there are about half the settings of earlier systems and the basic settings area for each process is always shown on the screen. Detailed settings can be made on easy-to-locate sub menus that are selected by using tabs, eliminating the need to page up or down. SPS also ties together Z-Molding’s MCM and FFC systems, allowing the clamp and injection to perform as a complete system.
The SPS control design provides for seamless setup of new molding processes with minimal screen changes and entries.
SPS provides a simple, one-page, step-by-step guide for mold installation.