Cannon have developed a method for the production of Polyurethane leather-imitation articles through Reaction Injection Moulding (RIM). This production process provides interesting applications, especially for the car interior and the furniture industries. The excellent results obtained in the development stage enabled the creation of a system that is a competitive and suitable alternative to the conventional manufacturing processes today available on the market.
The decision on which technologies and production processes are the most suitable to make plastic liners for car interiors (e.g. dashboards, door panels, armrests etc.), depends mostly on the type of raw materials that is going to be used. In turn, the choice of the material depends on the performance, quality and appearance that the finished product will have to provide.
Large-scale production is intended for mass consumption and needs to satisfy different requirements. The manufacturer must have access to adequate tools that can protect his competitiveness on the market, which means production processes that are reasonably inexpensive, suitably engineered and using raw materials that are cheaper but capable of guaranteeing excellent quality and performance.
Depending on the specific geometry of the piece to be moulded, the new Cannon system makes it possible to produce items in a thickness range from 0.8 to 3 mm. The geometry of the piece and its size have a considerable impact on the polymerisation time, which can vary between 40 and 180 seconds.
Moulded skins are clearly superior in terms of performance, quality and appearance, soft and extremely pleasant to the touch and feature excellent mechanical and aesthetical properties. Production costs are also more competitive, providing an additional reason for this technology to be welcomed by and spread rapidly amongst PU processors.
Comparison of Alternative System for Skin Production
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