It’s a question our experts often get here at Excelsior. Once our customers understand how rotomoulding and injection moulding works, and the various differences between them, obviously the next concern is always going to be – is it the most suitable process for the product you have in mind? Hopefully some of our previous posts can also give you a good idea, but this time we’ll also look at a few specific types of products, and exactly why roto moulding is such an ideal process to bring them to life.
So, what kinds of products are made with rotational moulding? Well, they include (but are not limited to):
- Materials handling products
- Parts for the automotive industry
- Marine and boating products
- Agriculture equipment
- Toys and playground equipment
- Brand new prototype products
Why, you ask? Read on to find out!
1. Materials Handling Products
Here at Excelsior we use food grade plastic for the vast majority of our materials handling containers. (We’ve previously talked about why food grade plastic is such a useful material for this application.) While both blow moulding and injection moulding can be used to limited effectiveness in this area, roto moulding is by far the most useful process, chiefly because of its ability to specifically produce hollow products with almost no limits on size. Those are both pretty much ideal qualities if you’re looking to create a materials handling container!
Materials handling products created with roto-moulding are also highly durable, and with a high load bearing capacity due to their seamless, one-part design. In other words, they can take more of a beating because they’re not pieced together out of multiple parts, as they’d have to be if they were created by injection moulding.
- Plastic tanks for storing water and chemicals
- Feed boxes
- Plastic grit bins
- Insulated fish and cooler boxes
2. Parts for the Automotive Industry
Again, the high durability and seamless nature of products created with roto moulding makes them eternally useful for the car and automotive industry. Also, because the moulds themselves aren’t limited by size in the same way that they are in other processes, it allows for the creation of particularly large-scale products that might not be possible otherwise. Plus, rotomoulding’s ability to create hollow products makes it useful for producing elements like ducting for heating and air conditioning.
- Diesel fuel tanks
- Heating and air conditioning ducts
- Dashboards for cars and trucks
- Arm rests
- Sun visors
3. Marine and Boating Products
Most useful here is roto-moulding’s ability to produce hollow plastic items that with more natural buoyancy rather than solid counterparts, which obviously wouldn’t float quite so easily! Many boat owners and marinas choose plastic manufacturing to create the hulls of smaller boats, as they’re lightweight and can be produced inexpensively. This is especially true for roto moulding, which is notably economical in smaller product runs.
- Floats, pontoons and buoys
- Canoes, kayaks, dinghies and other small boats
- Parts for jet skis and other personal water craft
4. Agriculture Equipment
Plastic manufacturing is another common resort for farmers and other agriculture professionals, as plastic products are both lightweight and easily transportable. What’s more, animals are far less likely to injure themselves on plastic products – unlike wood or metal, they don’t rust, they’re not edible, and they’re almost immune to insect infestation. Rotomoulding is one of the most helpful processes in this regard again because of the scale of products it can create, which is particularly helpful when caring for horses and other larger animals. To be honest, it’s useful for agriculture in much the same way it’s useful for materials handling above – feed bins are a common application!
- Cattle feeders
- Garden planters
- Fertiliser tanks
5. Toys and Playground Equipment
The seamless, one-piece nature of rotomoulded products makes them handily childproof in many ways. It’s fair to say that most children are fond of testing the durability of their toys or play equipment, and the lack of seams or stress points makes roto moulded products far more likely to stand up to these trials! The lightweight nature of the plastic leaves children less prone to injury, and the broad range of sizes available means that roto moulding can be used to create anything from smaller handheld toys to larger equipment like slides and rocking horses. Also, since it’s economical in short batches it can be particularly cost-effective if you’re only looking to outfit a single small area, such as a nursery.
- Rocking horses
- Dolls and other handheld toys
6. Customised Or Prototype Products
Many customers find that rotomoulding is exceptionally well suited to creating prototype products. In fact, it has a whole range of advantages which are specifically helpful in this context. To start with, rotomoulding has low tooling costs, which means that they can be easily adjusted if amendments need to be made. On the other hand, tools for injection moulding are notoriously expensive, which means the cost can quickly stack up when experimenting with different product configurations!
Products created with rotomoulding can be easily manufactured with individual features like stiffening ribs or different surface textures, and as we’ve covered, they all come out in a single seamless piece, with no stress points or joins between them. As well as being relatively cheap to produce, roto-moulding can also be notably faster than other processes, which may be an appealing advantage if you’re trying to get a project off the ground quickly.
As for examples…well, whatever you can think of! You can find more information on our contract moulding page, or alternatively take a quick look through our successful case studies. If you’ve already got a plastic product in mind, just give us a call on 0161 765 2010, and we’ll be happy to see how we can help!