It’s a familiar scenario: You’ve just received a shipment of a mystery resin about which you know very little. Have you ever worked with it before? Not sure. What are the processing parameters? Without any accompanying information, you don’t have a clue.
So you start a production run after “guestimating” the processing parameters. Not a best practice.
Whoops, problems: injection-molding production comes to a halt.
So you adjust your processing parameters. Nope, that doesn’t help. You put in an emergency call to the supplier for technical support : they claim it’s not the material, it’s your machine, your employees, etc. etc. Temperatures rise — and not in the plastic injection mold. In the background of the phone call, you can hear cursing. Meanwhile, you’ve just lost hours of production time and your delivery date, as well as your relationship with your customer, are in danger of imploding.
Have you seen this movie before? Wouldn’t you like to never see it again? Wouldn’t it be awesome to have the power to pull up processing details on thousands of materials on the internet? Better yet, what if there were an app for that?
Turns out there is: it’s called Mobile Specs. Developed by Mobile Specs LLC, of Laramie, Wyo., it is an actual thing available as an app for both Apple and Android devices.
Mobile Specs was launched this past June and is an off-shoot of an online, searchable database called the Prospector, that contains processing details on tens of thousands of materials from suppliers all over the planet. The same person who developed Prospector also developed a book-length printed guide to injection molding resins, which he distributed through the old Injection Molding Magazine.
The Mobile Specs app brings the paper pocket guide into the digital age. It includes vital information on more than 20,000 commercially available materials from more than 100 suppliers— both resin manufacturers and distributors.
With just a few taps on your mobile device, you’ll find the material you’re looking for: data for up to 25 molding parameters for each material, including mold shrink, melt flow, recommended processing temperatures, drying parameters, and a whole lot more. Comprehensive descriptions of each resin, along with processing tips, provide plastic injection molding companies with a wealth of background information about the resins they are working with. What’s more, the app offers full supplier processing guides where available.
The best part: it takes seconds to find what you need. You can search by supplier name, polymer family, or specific products and grades. The app information is continuously updated by Mobile Specs’ engineering team.
Molders can visit mobilespecs.com for more information. On the home page they’ll see a video demo of the app. You can order the app directly from Mobile Specs or download it from the Apple app store.