A customer provided us with an interesting challenge when we were asked to further develop an insert-transfer overmold process that we had recently pioneered.
The original project involved over molding a semi rigid frame with a soft plastic material to create improved shock resistance in mouth guards worn by players in sports that involve impact.
The customer started the project by working with us and his preferred toolmaker to detail the design of a new concept that he had pioneered.
Working closely with the customer, drawings and models were created and a tool was built to test the principle and provide product to test the market.
The Development Process
Because of the complex modelling required of this project we decided to bring in a great friend and colleague Marc Veenendaal from MPV Design.
Marc’s skills in conceptualizing, sketching, 3D modelling, rendering and animating are unparalleled.
After introducing Marc to our customer and briefing him on our requirements we worked with them to develop a new and innovative product.
The results were impressive.
Because Marc had created the component models his intimate knowledge of them put him in the ideal position to work with our Tooling Manager, Carl Stevens to model the cavity and core of the injection molding tool. This saved many hours of work that other wise would have been required during the tool design phase.
The customer was so impressed with the design of the mouth guard that he felt that it deserved it’s own bespoke case and Marc once again excelled in the design.
Marc created the video below for the customer so that he could present it to his potential customer.
The Manufacturing Process
This product came on the back of a previous product fro which we created a trial tool to test the principle using a standard injection molding machine which was interfaced to safety switches on the tool and a hydraulic power pack.
This tool allowed us to make components of a similar design to the Viper which were used to test the concept.
The image to the right was taken from the model that was created to communicate the concept and interfacing requirements.
Having learned many lessons from the initial tool we decided to utilise a different mechanical design for the next.
We incorporated a hydraulic rotary table on the platten of our molding machine which gave us the ability to mold a soft base mold component onto which the rigid insert was placed. The table rotates the sub assembly into a different position, the machine closes, injects soft plastic which encapsulates the rigid insert.
The video below shows the tool in operation.
The Finished Product
Our customer Signature Mouthguards love the product and we have introduced a new variation to our process Sports people around the world now have a new and advanced mouthguard that offers better protection than has ever been available before.
This is a win for everyone