TechnaSeal Inc. of Muncie, Ind., is addressing automotive under-the-hood needs by encapsulating hundreds of millions of molded electronic components and wire assemblies annually. Encapsulation is an alternative to the conventional method of applying a silicone or epoxy topcoat. Topcoats cost about 10 cents per part, according to TechnaSeal Vice President Wayne Fisher.
"Our method is 4-5 cents on a comparable part and is infinitely repeatable and controllable," he said.
TechnaSeal operates two vacuum impregnation lines to batch-seal devices with a thermoset anaerobic resin containing methacrylate monomers.
The material can link dissimilar materials such as plastic and metal in a switch, resistor, connector, filter, transformer or wiring harness. The resin cures internally and retains some flexibility.
TechnaSeal uses at least 4,000 gallons of the resin per year in doses of a gram or less, Fisher said.
A variety of customers are using the material:
Tri-Tech LLC of Mishawaka, Ind., was unable to bond nylon or polyester to a cross-linked wire on valve coils for natural-gas-powered buses.
Tri-Tech found a solution with vacuum-impregnation sealing and avoided an expensive redesign of the part.
Bently Nevada Corp. of Minden, Nev., used the sealing process to eliminate oil seepage through transducer cables in vibration sensor equipment for refinery, power-generation and petrochemical-related rotating equipment. Now the cables can bend around corners without cracking a seal.
TechnaSeal employs 20, has annual sales of about $2.5 million and is QS-9000 and ISO 9002 certified.
Sister company Magna-Tech Manufacturing Corp. employs 45 and has annual sales of about $7.5 million, mainly from a process that uses seven vacuum pressure vessels to seal automotive castings and metal components. Magna-Tech's chemical process differs from that of TechnaSeal.
Glenn E. Cleland is president and owner of both businesses, which share a 50,000-square-foot facility.
Tel. (765) 284-5050, fax (765) 286-0557 or e-mail [email protected] mfg.com.