Thermoplastics are incredibly versatile and efficient, that’s why they’re used in many of our everyday objects. But do you know what they are? Here we break down the basics of thermoplastics and the different kinds you will run across.
As the name suggests, thermoplastics are a type of plastic that can be fused, cured, or set (hence the “thermo”) because the higher the temperature, the more flexible thermoplastics become. As such, when thermoplastic pellets are heated, they soften and become liquid. This causes them to stand apart from thermosets, another type of plastic, which require a chemical reaction.
The Different Types of Thermoplastics
There are several different types of thermoplastics. At Piper Plastics, we work with two specifically:
PVC, or polyvinyl chloride, is a thermoplastic that can be processed into plastisol and fluidized bed powder. The first, plastisol, is a liquid at room temperature and it’s comprised of three main ingredients: PVC (polyvinyl chloride) resins, a plasticizer package, and a stabilizer package. This type of plastic is used mainly for dip molding and dip coating. The second, fluidized bed powder, requires PVC powder which is heated and then fused into solid vinyl. It’s also used primarily as a coating material.
The raw material form of nylon that Piper Plastics processes is, similar to PVC powder, also a fluidized bed powder used as a coating material. However, unlike PVC powder, when it’s heated to a process temperature of about 400F, it fuses into solid nylon instead of vinyl.
Have more questions about thermoplastics? Then give Piper Plastics a call at 800-966-9919. We can answer all of your questions and help you determine which thermoplastics are right for your project.