Plastic Injection Molding Materials & Thermoplastics

This is a list of many of the materials Abtec has experience in injection molding; from commodity resin to high-tech engineering grades. There are 1,000s of materials available for use in injection molded products, it can be a daunting task to determine the optimal material for your particular application. If you are unsure what material you need, or even where to start with the selection process, Abtec is here to help. Contact our team today for assistance.

Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS; Terluran®, Lustran®, Cycolac®)

ABS resins are hard, rigid, and tough, even at low temperatures.ABS plastics offer a good balance of tensile strength, impact and abrasion resistance, dimensional stability, surface hardness, rigidity, heat resistance, low-temperature properties, chemical resistance, and electrical characteristics.

Acetal Copolymer Polyoxymethylene (POM; Celcon®, Amcel®)

Acetal copolymers have lower melting temperatures making them easier and faster to process than conventional homopolymer grades.They have high tensile and flexural strength, fatigue resistance and hardness, along with excellent lubricity. Creep-resistant, remain stable in long term, high-temperature service and resist moisture.

Acetal Homopolymer Polyoxymethylene (POM; Delrin®)

Acetal homopolymers have high tensile strength, stiffness, resilience, fatigue endurance, and moderate toughness under repeated impact. Acetal homopolymers have excellent creep-resistance, and the highest fatigue endurance of any unfilled thermoplastics. A low coefficient of friction makes their abrasion resistance excellent. Low moisture absorption.

Acrylic Polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA; Altuglas®, Zylar®, Plexiglas®, Cyrolite®)

Acrylic thermoplastics are known for crystal clarity and outstanding weatherability. Acrylic plastics transmit and control light, resist weather, are stable against discoloration, dimensional stability, and a combination of structural and thermal properties. Acrylics are one of the most scratch resistant thermoplastics, and have very low haze, making them ideal for optical applications

Polyolefin Polypropylene (PP; Pinnacle, Stat-Kon™, Hival®, Pro-Fax™)

Polypropylene is a low density resin that offers good thermal, chemical, and electrical properties. Polypropylene has limited heat resistance, but heat-stabilized grades can be used at elevated temperatures. Although it is less tough than LDPE, it is much less brittle than HDPE. This allows polypropylene to be used as a replacement for engineering plastics, such as ABS. Polypropylene has very good resistance to fatigue, so that most plastic living hinges, such as those on flip-top bottles, are made from this material.

Polyolefin High Density Polyethylene (HDPE; Nova®)

HPDE resin is useful for applications that require toughness, rigidity and strength, making it a good choice for blow molding and injection molding applications. For blow molding applications, HDPE resins offer stiffness and stress crack resistance, which makes it a useful application for personal care, household and industrial containers. HDPE pipe resin offers toughness and stress crack resistance making it a good choice for pipe extrusion. HDPE resin offers strength and processability that is essential for injection molding applications.

Polyolefin Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE; Dow®)

LDPE resin is easy to process and improves product performance because it offers excellent printability, strength, tear resistance and elasticity, which makes it a cost effective choice for a variety of film applications. It is useful for producing a variety of products including liners, bags, shrink and lamination films, extrusion coatings and caps and closures. It is durable enough to produce a variety of products such as power cables and toys.

Nylon 6, 6/6, 4/6, 6/12, 12 Polyamide (PA; Complet®, Nyloy®, Stanyl®, Zytel®, Ultramid®)

Nylons have excellent fatigue resistance, low coefficient of friction, good toughness, and resist many fuels, oils, and chemicals. Nylon 6/6 has higher strength, stiffness and hardness. Also resists high temperatures and abrasion. Nylon 6 resins are tougher and more flexible and have a wider processing window. Nylon 6/12 absorbs less moisture and maintains both mechanical and electrical properties better in high humidity environments. Nylon 12 has low moisture absorption combine with superior resistance to fuels, hydraulic oils, and most automotive fluids. Nylon 4/6 has the greatest melting point of the polyamide family. This leads to faster set up and, therefore, faster injection molding cycles(30% faster than for 6/6). Nylon 4/6 absorbs more moisture than 6/6, but with its high crystallinity, keeps dimensional stability close to nylon 6/6.

Polyolefin Polyethylene (PE)

Polyethylene resin is useful for applications that require chemical resistance, little or no moisture absorption and flexibility. Polyethylene properties range from flexible to rigid, low impact strength to nearly unbreakable, and clear to opaque. Its use is limited to temperature applications below 200 degrees Fahrenheit, and it has the ability to carry light loads for a long period

Polyetherimide (PEI; Ultem™, RTP®, ESD grades)

Polyetherimide is an amorphous thermoplastic that resists high temperatures and has excellent electrical properties that remain stable over a wide range of temperatures and frequencies. Polyetherimide offers excellent chemical resistance, high strength, and unmodified PEI resin is transparent and has natural flame resistance. Creep-resistant and ductile enough for snap-fit designs, but is notch sensitive. The material is also suitable for applications requiring short-term or repeated steam exposure.

Polyketones Polyetheretherketone (PEEK; Victrex™, Lubricomp®)

Polyketones are a family of partially crystalline engineering thermoplastics that include Polyaryletherketones (PAEK), Polyetheretherketones (PEEK), and Polyetherketoneketones (PEKK). Polyketones are stronger and more rigid than most engineering plastics. They can be used at high temperatures and have excellent chemical resistance. They also have high strength and resist burning. They are tough and impact resistant over a wide range of temperatures. Coefficient of friction and wear rates are very low. Polyketones also have good dielectric properties, and high dielectric strength.

Sulfone Polysulfone (PSU; Udel®, Tecason™, Isoplast®)

Sulfones are amorphous engineering thermoplastics noted for high heat-deflection temperatures and outstanding dimensional stability. Heat resistance is the outstanding performance characteristic of the sulfones. Service temperature is limited by heat-deflection temperature, . Sulfone resins offer exceptional value and high-performance. Properties include excellent thermal stability, which ranges from 345 to 400°F, high toughness and strength, good environmental stress cracking resistance, and combustion resistance.The strength and stiffness of PSU and PES are virtually unaffected up to their glass-transition temperature. Additionally, the product is approved for food contact and potable water.

Polyethersulfone (PES; Ultrason®)

Sulfones are amorphous engineering thermoplastics noted for high heat-deflection temperatures and outstanding dimensional stability. Heat resistance is the outstanding performance characteristic of the sulfones. Service temperature is limited by heat-deflection temperature, . Sulfone resins offer exceptional value and high-performance. Properties include excellent thermal stability, which ranges from 345 to 400°F, high toughness and strength, good environmental stress cracking resistance, and combustion resistance.The strength and stiffness of PSU and PES are virtually unaffected up to their glass-transition temperature. Additionally, the product is approved for food contact and potable water.

Polystyrene (HIPS; Hival®, Huntsman®)

Polystyrene is noted for its clarity, hardness, processing ease and excellent colorability. Polystyrene is a low cost amorphous thermoplastic. Heat resistance is low compared with other thermoplastics. Recommended continuous service temperature is well under 200°F. Electrical properties are good at room temperature and are only affected slightly by higher temperatures and humidity conditions. It is economical and is used for producing plastic model assembly kits, plastic cutlery, CD “jewel” cases, and many other objects where a fairly rigid, economical plastic of any of various colors is desired.

Polycarbonate (PC; Lexan™, Iupilon®, Makroblend®, Calibre™, Makrolon®)

Polycarbonates are amorphous engineering thermoplastics that offer exceptional toughness over a wide temperature range. Polycarbonate resins are available in general-purpose molding and extrusion grades and in special grades that provide specific properties or processing characteristics. These include flame-retardant formulations as well as grades that meet Food and Drug Administration regulations for parts used in food-contact and medical applications. Polycarbonates are characterized by a combination of toughness, transparency, heat and flame resistance, and dimensional stability.

Polyphenylene Sulfide (PPS; Ryton®, Radel™, Fortron®)

Polyphenylene sulfide (PPS) is a crystalline, high-performance engineering thermoplastic characterized by outstanding high-temperature stability, inherent flame resistance, and broad chemical resistance. Most PPS compounds are used for their combination of high-temperature stability, chemical resistance, dimensional reliability, and flame retardance. The compounds all have excellent stability at very high temperatures. The injection-moldable PPS compounds require processing temperature of 600 to 650°F. Mold temperatures can range from 100 to 275° F to control the crystallinity. Because of its inherent flame retardancy, PPS is ideal for high temperature electrical applications.

Polyphenylsulfone (PPSU; Radel®, Ultrason®)

Radel® polyphenylsulfone (PPSU) delivers the highest performance of sulfone polymers, offering better impact resistance and chemical resistance than polysulfone (PSU) and polyetherimide (PEI). The high heat resistance and excellent hydrolytic stability of Radel® PPSU make it an excellent choice for hot water fittings and medical devices requiring repeated steam sterilization.

Liquid Crystal Polymer (LCP; Vectra®, Zenite®)

Liquid-crystal polymers are a unique class of aromatic polyester polymers that provide previously unavailable high-performance properties. LCPs have outstanding mechanical properties at high temperatures, excellent chemical resistance, inherent flame retardancy and good weatherability. Easy processibility of the resins is attributed to its liquid-crystal molecular structure, which provides high melt flow and fast setup in molded parts. Molded parts are highly anisotropic (exhibiting properties with different values when measured in different directions) and knit lines are much weaker than other areas. LCPs are exceptionally inert. They resist stress cracking in the presence of most chemicals at elevated temperatures.

Polyester Polybutylene Terephthalate (PBT; Crastin®, Valox™, Celeanex®)

Polybutylene Terephthalate (PBT) is a crystalline, high molecular weight polymer that has an excellent balance of properties and processing characteristics. Because the material crystallizes rapidly, mold cycles are short and molding temperatures can be lower than for many engineering plastics. PBT has high mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties with good chemical resistance, and low water absorption resulting in high dimensional stability.

Polyester Polyethylene terephthalate (PET; SkyPet®, SkyGreen®, Rynite™)

Polyethylene terephthalate is a hard, stiff, strong, dimensionally stable material that absorbs very little water. It has good gas barrier properties and good chemical resistance except to alkalis. PET exists both as an amorphous (transparent) and as a semi-crystalline (opaque and white) thermoplastic material. Generally, it has good resistance to mineral oils, solvents and acids but not to bases. The semi-crystalline PET has good strength, ductility, stiffness and hardness. The amorphous PET has better ductility but less stiffness and hardness.

Polyphenylene Oxide (PPO; Noryl™)

Polyethylene Oxide is a strong engineering plastic with outstanding mechanical, thermal, and electrical properties. Low moisture absorption and low thermal expansion make (PPO) one of the most dimensionally stable thermoplastics available, and is widely used for electrical housings and structural components since it has excellent insulating properties, flame resistance, and dimensional stability over a wide range of service temperatures. Polyethylene Oxide is often selected for fluid handling applications because of its low moisture absorption, superior impact strength and stiffness.

Acrylic-Styrene-Acrylonitrile (ASA; Geloy™)

Acrylic-Styrene-Acrylonitrile (ASA) is a two-phase thermoplastic material combining styrene-acrylonitrile copolymer and acrylic rubber. It has excellent weather resistance, so it is the best choice for outdoor applications. ASA is used in outdoor applications that require long term color stability. Exterior siding, automotive side mirror housings, drain pipe and fittings, outdoor lighting covers, signs and marine applications are some common uses. ASA offers better resistance to environmental stress cracking than ABS. ASA parts have high gloss, good chemical and heat resistance, and high impact strength, even at low temperatures.

Thermoplastic Rubber (TPR; Alcryn®, Santoprene™)

Thermoplastic Rubber TPR is best described as a material which has both the characteristics of rubber and plastic. TPR is light in weight, has excellent abrasion resistance and dimensional stability, low temperature flexibility, good tear strength, excellent weather resistance and electrical properties. TPR performs like vulcanized rubber, is reusable and recyclable.

Thermoplastic Elastomer (TPE; Dynaflex™, Alcryn®, Thermoplast®)

Thermoplastic Elastomer (TPE) is a class of polymer that, within their design limits, behave like thermoset rubber. Thermoplastic Elastomers are generally low modulus, flexible materials that can be stretched repeatedly to at least twice their original length at room temperature with an ability to return to their approximate original length when stress is released. Thermoplastic Elastomers provide flexibility, slip resistance, shock absorption, soft texture and ergonomic comfort. Some of the benefits include lower part cost, simpler processing, colorable, and recyclable scrap and parts

Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU; Isoplast®, Tecoflex™, Irogran®, Texin®, Desmopan®)

Thermoplastic Polyurethane is a unique material that offers the elasticity of rubber combined with the toughness and durability of metal. These materials are available in grades that go from very soft and flexible to very rigid. TPU has excellent abrasion resistance, outstanding low temperature performance, high shear strength, high elasticity, and high transparency. TPU also has excellent mechanical properties and is oil and grease resistant. Some typical uses for thermoplastic polyurethane include automotive interior and exterior parts, caster wheels, power tools, hydraulic seals, sporting goods, bearings, bushing, and medical devices.