Plastic extrusion is a highly customizable fabrication process that uses thermoplastic resins and a pre-shaped die to create components at high volumes. This manufacturing method can utilize different extrusion techniques based on the needs of the end application.
In the first stage of the plastic extrusion process, the hopper of an extruder is filled with solid raw material. This material is fed through the machine’s feed throat into the extruder barrel, where it is heated and moved by one or more spinning screws. The heat and pressure within the barrel melts the thermoplastic resin before it is passed through a breaker plate equipped with screens that filter out contaminants and ensure consistent pressure.
Next, the material passes through a feed pipe into a custom-built die that features the desired extrusion profile. The melted, compressed plastic retains the shape of the die, creating uniform components. After the material has been extruded, a cooling system solidifies the parts evenly.
Cooling methods include using water baths or cooling rolls. The most appropriate cooling method is selected based on the extruded product shape and the cooling capacity required. The finished extruded profiles can be cut, shaped, or otherwise prepared for any further steps in the fabrication process.
There are several specialized extrusion techniques that can manufacture diverse plastic extruded products: