Another Sated Design on its way to completion

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Lead times

Lead times are important to a project whatever the time of year. During the last few months of any year it is even more important to be aware of lead times than usual. This is because Christmas and Chinese New Year are on the horizon and their effect on a project’s lead time should always be borne in mind. At Sated Design we always make sure to advise clients of the effects of upcoming events to their schedule and if enough notice is given make sure they get to production with parts reviewed, checked and shipped before the factory finishes for the holidays.

Progressing Projects

Sated Design look to progress projects swiftly so that our clients can see samples return from the manufacturer as soon as is possible. We recently worked on a project which ran from concept to production issue in just over a month. This was an involved project that included Sated Design providing research, testing and a fully functioning prototype as well as the CAD design, costing and a comprehensive production issue.

Quick Lead Times

Sated Design make it possible to achieve quick lead times by using time compression techniques, an example of which was used at the start of this project. Concept design is progressed with the use of hand sketching this has a faster turnaround time than CAD and is suited for quickly exploring lots of different options. Throughout the project, up to the point of the production issue we maintain a dialogue with the tool maker to ensure a smooth hand over.

Communication

But Sated Designs involvement does not stop at the production issue. We communicate with the tool maker as tooling progresses to help ensure that the project arrives on time and at the agreed quality. It is very satisfying to work in cooperation with manufacturers and clients so they can arrive at a point where tooling commences promptly with samples production following on.

If you have a new adult product idea or an existing product you want to develop for this fast moving market, we are the people to help you get there and succeed. Give us a call on 01626 774881 for a free of charge, confidential initial consultation.

Let’s Create Something Great Together
Contact us today
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Choosing a plastic Part 2

Which plastic should I choose?

There are literally thousands of different plastics and plastic alloys, with more being added to the list monthly. sex-toy-plasticsBelow are a selection of the plastics you will encounter in products you use every day.

Generalised qualities of some plastics?

Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS)

A polymer of styrene (providing a shiny, impervious surface), polybutadiene (for rubbery toughness), and nitrile monomers (which bind the chains together for additional strength), ABS is commonly used for lightweight injection mouldings such as remote controls, automotive trim, and toys.
* Poor UV-resistance
* Poor stress cracking resistance
* Low water absorption
* Good resistance for diluted acids and bases
* Good oil resistance
* Good scratch resistance
* High surface hardness
* Good impact strength

Polyethylene (PE)

A semi-crystalline thermoplastic with a high degree of toughness and very good chemical resistance. When compared to other plastics, it exhibits low mechanical strength and temperature resistance, however this can be improved by using grades with higher molecular weights. Primarily used in packaging, it is also used in varying grades for piping, chopping boards and even knee replacements.
* Low density compared to other materials
* High impact resistance, even at low temperatures
* Good resistance to wear
* Minimal moisture absorption
* Excellent chemical resistance
* High corrosion resistance
* Non-stick

Polypropylene (PP)

Another semi-crystalline thermoplastic, which resembles HDPE, but exhibits higher strength, rigidity and hardness. PP is, however, sensitive to impact at temperatures below freezing point. The chemical resistance is comparable to PE. PP is widely used in applications from flip-top bottle caps, furniture, rebar supports, and alternatives to laboratory glassware.
* Low density compared to other materials
* Minimal moisture absorption
* Excellent chemical resistance, even to solvents (but this means labels may not adhere to it)
* Highly corrosion resistant
* Relatively high superficial hardness

Nylon 6

Although Nylon was originally developed as an alternative to silk, modern grades of nylon are extremely versatile and can be used in engineering applications such as gears, engine fittings, and even toothbrush bristles. Other grades of Nylon (Nylon 12) are used in cosmetics and sports apparel.
* Balanced toughness and rigidity
* Capacity for hardness level adjustment
* Extremely high impact strength, also down to -40°C
* Good abrasion and wear resistance
* High energy and shock absorption
* No brittle fractures under pressure or impact loads
* Extreme wall thickness variations can be realized in the moulded component
* Ready integration of inserts and reinforcement materials and fillers

For help in readying your design for manufacture, and ensuring that your materials selections are optimal, contact Sated Design and discuss your project with us.

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Choosing Plastics Part 1

adult-toy-plasticsChoosing the right plastic for your application can be a fraught exercise, with many different criteria and considerations to bear in mind. Sated Design have the benefit of 50 years combined experience in designing plastic components and products and can help you navigate this crucial process.

Important factors when selecting polymers:

  • Thermal stress – can your product or component survive service without melting or fatiguing?
  • Mechanical stress (yield strength, tensile strength, fatigue strength, crack resistance) – how strong, durable, rigid or elastic does the material need to be?
  • Tribological stress (friction, lubrication and wear) – how much will the component rub or wear down?
  • Chemical stress (resistance to attack by water/oils/acids/alkalines/detergents/solvents) – can it resist damage from chemicals in its environment?
  • Electrical requirements (resistivity/conductivity) – some plastics are excellent at insulating electricity, which may be vital for meeting product safety requirements. Other plastics allow electrical charge to flow through them, which may be useful for delicate instruments.
  • Optical requirements (light transmission %, clarity, frequency v opacity) – while many plastics are ‘clear’, there are varying degrees of clarity and transmission, which may be crucial for cosmetic or optical applications.
  • Combustibility and burn (glow wire, UL V rating, toxicology of smoke) – the resistance of plastics to burning, and their danger once alight are vital factors in designing safe products. Even the acridity and thickness of smoke can be a consideration when designing for public spaces.
  • Weather resistance (extremes of temperature, water absorption) – will you product be used in a Scandinavian winter, or a summer in the Sahara? Or both? Many plastics will absorb water, which may affect their mechanical performance.
  • Radiation exposure (UV and gamma) – not all grades of thermoplastics are suitable for outdoor applications. Materials that are not UV stable will change both in appearance and molecular structure when exposed to UV, and over time can become brittle, crack, change colour, warp and suffer stress crack formation.
  • Physiological safety (food, pharmaceutical, cosmetics, wearable) – some plastics contain or leech harmful chemicals. Strict standards must be met for ensuring that plastic products are safe for humans.
  • Environmental safety (biodegradability, ecological contamination) – PLA will decompose within 90 days to form CO2 and water. PVC does not readily decompose, and when it does it releases toxins.
  • Recycling during production and at end of life – moulding plastics creates waste in the form of sprues and scrap. How this waste, as well as the end product is disposed of are important to consider.
  • Cost for purchase and cost for processing – as well as the cost of the raw material, the amount of time the material takes to fill the tool and cool all adds cost.
  • Processing and handling requirements and manufacturers preferences for drying/handling/masterbatching – special colours, alloys or additives may need to be custom mixed. Degradable plastics and those with hygroscopic characteristics may need special storage or treatment.
  • Special factors – UL yellow card certification, colour availability due to additives, compatibility with adhesives and joining techniques. There are any number of other factors which will influence materials selection, and each design specification is different.

Benefit from Sated Design’s 50+ years of plastics experience to help you make the best selection for your project.

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