Friedrichshafen, Germany — Dr. Boy GmbH & Co KG used 3-D printed mold inserts to injection mold parts during Fakuma 2015.
The technology can be used for trial runs and small part production, Boy officials said.
Boy set up a Stratasys 3-D printer at its booth to turn out the inserts. The parts were molded on a Boy XS press with 10 metric tons of clamping force. It takes about two hours to make the insert and mold the part, according to Klaus Geimer, director of administration and deputy managing editor at Boy.
“We take it from the printer and bring it to the mold base,” Geimer said. The Boy press molded a glass-filled part — which Geimer said cannot be made via 3-D direct printing alone.
Boy showed a total of seven of its small-tonnage presses at Fakuma — highlighting automation. Another 10-tonne Boy XS ran micromolded parts — a component for osteosynthesis, used for implantable devices in bone fracture patients. The screw diameter is just 8 millimeters, and the part weight is 0.078 of a gram, said Alfred Schiffer, Boy managing partner.
The injection unit delivers a fast feed of material. At Fakuma, Boy was running the medical part from polybutylene terephthalate, which remained in the injection unit for only about 5 minutes — which Boy said is a major reduction in residence time from a press with a larger screw.
“The special advantage of this smallest-known reciprocating screw plasticizing unit without pre-plasticization is clearly the shorter residence time of the plasticized material in the screw channel,” Schiffer said.
Geimer said Fakuma is a good show for the injection press maker, which is based in Fernthal, Germany, near Düsseldorf. “We have a lot of inquiries. There are a lot of visitors here,” he said.
Also at Fakuma, Boy demonstrated two-component molding on one machine-a screwdriver combining nylon and liquid silicone rubber — on a Boy 35 E VH. Another press, a 60-metric-ton Boy E used a seven-axis Kuka robot to hand visitors a toothbrush body, which visitors exchanged for a new multi-component toothbrush.
Other Fakuma molding for Boy included: floor protectors on a 25-metric-ton Boy 25 E press, featuring automated packaging; a two-component part molded in a Boy 100 E with the second injection unit set up in a L-position; and rubber O-rings on a 35-metric-ton press showing a brushing device for part removal and heat-able magnetic mold plates.
Boy also demonstrated Industry 4.0 through a partnership with proSeS BDE GmbH. The system shows every press and gives detailed running and production information.
Boy also showed its online energy calculator for the first time “live” at the Fakuma show.
Boy's U.S. facility is in Exton, Pa.