With 17 registered and three pending patents, we don’t just make do with what’s available. We reimagine what’s possible.
Here at Hampel, we don’t make things. Sure, thermoforming a wide range of complex polymer shapes is part of it, but what we really do is solve problems. Sometimes our customers bring their challenges to us. Sometimes we identify challenges our customers didn’t know they had. And sometimes we use our deep expertise in materials science and manufacturing processes to figure out a better and/or less expensive way to do things – even when there wasn’t a “problem” with the original design.
Hampel has the expertise to provide engineering solutions for the most complex thermoforming applications possible. Whether you require turnkey engineering and design solutions, project management or engineering support, Hampel engineers and designers will work with you providing engineering analysis and evaluation capabilities that take cost out your final product and help shorten your time to market.
Plastic is plastic, right? Maybe at one time, but advances in materials science over the past 15-20 years have opened up vast new realms of possibility, both in terms of the what can be thermoformed and the applications for thermoformed products. Hampel has the experience and capability to work with nearly all thermoformable materials and the expertise to provide you with the right material recommendation for your project.
Numerous materials are available such as ABS, HIPS and HMWPE to meet the requirements of almost any application. In addition to these basic materials, additional engineered resins consisting of additives, fillers or multi-layer exist to meet even more stringent application requirements. The following is a list of some of the more common thermoforming materials Hampel can accommodate:
- PE – Polyethylene
- Cast Acrylic Composites
- ABS – Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene
- HIPS – High Impact Polystyrene
- HMWPE – High Molecular Weight Polyethylene
- PP – Polypropylene
- TPO – Thermoplastic Olefin
- Altair Plus®
- Film & laminates
- PC – Poly carbonate
- PET – Polyethylene Terephthalate
- Engineered resins
- UL Rated materials
The thermoforming process lends itself well towards an array of materials, which come in a vast selection of colors, finishes and textures. Custom pre-colored plastic sheet can be used to give the final part a showroom worthy finish, which eliminates the need for post-production painting.
Robotic Automated Trimming
Some companies have a five-axis trimmer. More ambitious ones have seven-axis trimmers. No one had a nine-axis trimmer. No one until Hampel, that is. Knowing we could take this technology further, we partnered with some of the brightest minds in robotic integration to develop the first nine-axis trimmer in North America. They said it couldn’t be done. They said it was impossible. Guess we just didn’t hear them.
Our automated trimming equipment enables us to successfully trim parts of various sizes, materials and tolerance requirements to exacting specifications and unparalleled consistency. Slots, holes and perimeter trims at nearly any angle can all be accommodated with our precision automated trimming equipment.
Patterns and Prototypes
A pattern is the first step in the tool construction phase after a design or model has been determined. The pattern can also be utilized to produce prototypes for design and material validation. This is the point at which modifications can be incorporated prior to producing a production tool. Most patterns are produced from a special pattern wood or ren-board type product enabling ease of change. Hampel provides the expertise to facilitate design changes via Pro-E models or manually to ensure the outcome is a quality part design for cost effective manufacturing.
To ensure dimensionally consistent and stable parts, Hampel utilizes temperature controlled aluminum molds of only the highest quality. Hampel incorporates many years of experience in tooling design resulting in the ability to produce unique parts requiring advanced technical and engineering expertise. Many tools have complex assists, core pulls or moveable inserts allowing for the forming of complex shapes. Hampel ensures optimal production efficiency by taking all aspects of the final product in mind.
Hampel has the ability to design and build various secondary fixtures to accommodate part tolerance and assembly requirements. With each part requirement being unique, cooling, trimming and assembly fixtures are designed to efficiently process parts within Hampel’s manufacturing cells utilizing the latest technology in forming and automated trimming.
Hampel engineers utilize the latest technology and software available. Creo is the base design software, but nearly all file types can be accepted such as igs, stp, dxf, dwg and more. Our Surfcam and Power Inspect software enables accurate programming and validation of parts.
Hampel utilizes the latest design software upgrades of Creo. All tooling design is done utilizing software to ensure optimization of material usage and ease of manufacturing. Creo, the most robust and versatile parametric solid modeling solution for computer aided design, capabilities include:
- Simulate and analyze to improve product performance and optimize product design resulting in a quality, cost-effective product
- Share digital product data seamlessly with you via e-mail or our user friendly FTP site
- 3-D modeling capabilities
SURFCAM enables Hampel’s automated trimming equipment to precisely trim your thermoformed product to specification. This software provides Hampel programmers the ability to easily convert a part model of various import formats to an actual trim program, downloadable to any one of Hampel’s numerous automated trim cells.
Power Inspect software allows Hampel’s quality assurance team to provide complete inspection of your product utilizing a Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM). Hampel can provide complete ISIR, Capability studies or PPAP’s to ensure your parts meet the specifications required on a consistent basis.