How can we help?

Find out more about the range of services we offer.

SERVICES

Need Advice?

Our team can provide you with the knowledge you need.

ASK

ICL TECH ARE THE AMONG THE UK'S LEADING VACUUM FORMERS

Complex flowing geometry is pulled from intricate and robust moulds.

Vacuum formed products are all around us and play a major part in our everyday lives. Unquestionably, this is because vacuum forming is one of the most versatile and cost-effective thermoforming processes.

The quality plastic parts and products ICL Tech produces are durable, lightweight, and can be manufactured in an array of materials, sizes, thicknesses, shapes, and colours to meet your exact specifications.

Our extensive vacuum forming resources enable quick and efficient creation of plastic prototypes, one-off parts, and full volume production in small or large quantities. Exact replica parts can be produced indefinitely making this manufacturing process perfect for repeat production runs.

Vacuum and thermoforming allow for complex geometry to be created at a fraction of the cost of other forming processes (i.e. injection moulding/ rotational moulding).

Advantages include:

• Low tooling and engineering costs

• Tooling can be modified quickly to support changes in part designs

• Large ‘single-piece’ size capability

• Plastic prototyping capability

• High production speed/fast turnaround time

• Extensive variety of thermoplastic materials to choose from

Shaping the mould to create perfect plastic products.

Creation of a mould - sometimes referred to as a 'tool' - is necessary for any vacuum or thermoforming project.

Our large industrial vacuum forming machines are powerful and capable of producing highly detailed repeat parts with extreme accuracy. In order to achieve this finish we recommend using high quality and robust moulds made of aluminum, hardwood, or high strength resin.

Moulds such as these can run up a fairly substantial price tag, and prior to this investment, ICL Tech recommends testing with less-costly, short-run prototype tooling. This is especially important for new products, and products still in development.

ICL Tech manufactures in-house plastic prototype moulds which can last from 1 to 100 runs depending on the size and intricacy required. For full-scale production, we work with dedicated, time sensitive mould makers to engineer the most exacting and cost effective moulds available to the market.

  • Moulds can be produced more cheaply for thermoformed parts than for injection moulding, since thermoforming tools don’t have to operate at such high temperatures and pressures.
  • When compared to rotational moulding or fibreglass reinforced plastic processes, tooling for thermoformed parts can be produced more quickly, which combined with faster production runs, reduces the time to market.

What is thermoforming?

Thermoforming refers to a group of manufacturing processes that use heat, pressure and/ or mechanical means to soften and shape thermoplastic sheet into finished parts. The heated sheet becomes pliable and can be stretched, pressed or sucked over or into the contours of a mould to produce the desired shape. Once cooled, the resulting thermoformed plastic part retains the shape of the mould. The excess material is then trimmed away and the formed part is released.

The excess trimmed material doesn’t go to waste as nearly all thermoformed materials are recyclable. Excess material can be reground and extruded along with virgin resin into new thermoplastic sheets.

Compared to other forms of processing plastics, such as injection molding, rotational moulding, and blow moulding, thermoforming has a number of advantages including shorter lead times, and cheaper tooling costs. Thermoforming is considered a very efficient and cost effective way to produce multiple plastic parts quickly with an array of thermoplastic materials providing an extensive choice of colours, finishes and textures.

Thermoformed plastic parts can be found all around us in daily life. Call us to discover if your part can be thermoformed.

How Does It Work?

Does this process fit the needs of your project?

Contact ICL Tech

©2017 ICL Tech Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

ICL Tech Ltd is a member of the ICL Plastics Group, registered in Scotland No. 54592, registered office 80 St Vincent Street, Glasgow, G2 5UB.

M   |   T   |   W   |   Th   |   F  |

9:00 - 17:00

TEL: +44 (0) 141 761 4700

FAX: +44 (0) 141 761 4729

EMAIL: sales@icltech.co.uk

ICL Tech Ltd

No.1 Wellington Road, Glasgow, Scotland (UK), G64 2SA

• Low tooling and engineering costs

• Tooling can be modified quickly to support changes in part designs

• Large ‘single-piece’ size capability

• Plastic prototyping capability

• High production speed/fast turnaround time

• Extensive variety of thermoplastic materials to choose from