Bolton, Ontario — Industrial technology and machine maker Husky Injection Molding Systems Ltd. and Chem-Trend LLC collaborated on a system to create repeatability during the critical color change process.
The team devised a new guided procedure for the Husky Altanium Mold Controller operator interface with the aim of increasing equipment and labor uptime. The instructions cover a simple but effective approach to setting up and performing the color change process for molds with hot runner systems.
The approach is based on the process for using Chem-Trend's Ultra Purge brand of purge compounds, which is designed specifically to reduce color-change time and carbon formation in hot runner systems.
Fast and effective color changes are essential for processors and the partners see an upward trend in color change applications, according to Mike Ellis, global business manager for Husky Hot Runners and Controllers division.
"Our collaboration with Chem-Trend and the integration with our Altanium Mold Controllers addresses this critical market requirement and enables our customers to achieve more efficient and effective color change performance," Ellis said in a news release.
Trial results showed up to an 85 percent reduction in scrap and an 80 percent increase in mold cleaning efficiency when following the recommended process, the release says.
A lot is at stake for processors in terms of time and cost if the right purge compound and process are not used in color changeovers, according to Graziano Pestarino, global account manager for thermoplastics solutions at Chem-Trend.
"By combining our years of expertise in the field and our latest advancements in purging technology with that of Husky, one of the leading producers of hot runner systems in the industry, plastics manufacturers stand to reap immense benefits of productivity and control previously unachievable," Pestarino said in the release.
The color change step-by-step instructions include settings for shot weight, conversion ratio and purge quantity while a "purge booster" feature aids in faster color change time.
Also, a digital cycle count input from the injection molding machine can be configured to further automate the color change process by signaling when the correct amount of compound has been used before moving to the next step.
In addition, the system has a color change or black speck removal mode and all color change process settings are saved to a mold setup file for easy recall.