Overmoulding is the process of adding an additional layer of material over an existing piece or part. For example, encasing the steel shaft of a screwdriver with plastic to form the handle.
But the innovative encapsulation process can also be used for sensitive electronic components and cables. Allowing you to protect your PCB and cable assemblies with an unbreakable, shock-proof solution. Which, ultimately, will provide a greater lifespan and reliability for your products. A PCB assembly, for example, can be placed in a specially-manufactured aluminium mould tool and completely surrounded (overmoulded) with a liquid compound.
What are the general benefits of overmoulding?
Overmoulding is an essential step for companies in a wide range of industries who use cables and electronics. The process greatly simplifies the production of final packaging and helps to effectively protect parts against the elements, reduce repair costs and improve product safety.
A variety of textures can also be achieved through this process. From soft-touch surfaces for handling to tougher ones for durability. Unlike with potting, there is also no need for housing and very little waste with the overmoulding process.
What’s the difference between Low and High Pressure Overmoulding?
Low Pressure Overmoulding is a great option when it comes to protecting particularly fragile PCB components from damage. This is because it uses lower temperatures (approximately 210C compared to 250C for High Pressure). However, High Pressure Overmoulding arguably provides a more robust end result. It also allows parts to be moulded with better definition, offering a superior finish in a bigger range of colours with improved dimensional control.
High Pressure Overmoulding can also use a greater range of materials – such as PU, TPU and PVC – to obtain compatibility with the cable insulation, while Low Pressure Overmoulding typically uses polyamide materials. At about £1,000 to £2,000 for tooling costs, it is also more cost-effective than Low Pressure Overmoulding which typically costs from about £2,500.
We like to give you options at EC Electronics. Which is why we offer both Low and High Pressure Overmoulding as part of our services. Using our specialist vertical moulding machines, we are capable of not only moulding plastic parts – but also the full overmoulding of connectors and electronic PCB assemblies.
If you would like to discuss your project or need advice on which type of overmoulding would be most suitable, please do not hesitate to contact us.