Carbon Fibre Arm
Next to the production of plastic injection moulds, Momexx has experience in the design and production of molds for laminating carbon fiber products. Carbon fiber is characterized by a very low weight with high strength. Refitech BV (a derivation of reinforced fiber technology) is a producer of industrial components made from plastic composites. The company approached Momexx for the production of moulds for a new carbon fiber product.
The pick & place arm is utilized in a production line for cigars. The composite of carbon fiber with epoxy was used because other materials could not provide the speed and strength needed. Based on the design of the arm, Momexx was asked to construct the molds of the parts as user-friendly as possible. Next to that the arm was equipped with bearings.
Momexx took care of the engineering and production of the moulds for the carbon fiber parts of the arm. The production of moulds for carbon fiber parts needs a different approach than normal plastic injection moulds. The speed of heating and cooling the mold plays an important role in laminating a carbon fiber product. Besides, Momexx effectuated that the molds were user-friendly and made easy assembly of the bearings possible by using aluminium inserts.
Also good communication and consultations between the project leader of Momexx and the client during the construction and production of the molds contributed to the quality of the final result. Interaction and knowledge transfer about which effect the design of the carbon fiber parts has on the production of the parts and how one should deal with that was part of the cooperation.
After approximately six weeks the project was successfully completed. The lightweight carbon fiber pick & place arm caused a 40% increase in capacity of the cigar production machine. Winning the award for innovative material use at ESEF 2010 by the client is a good illustration of the success of this carbon fiber product.