The molds used for forming composites, also known as tools, can be made from virtually any material. For parts cured at ambient or low temperature, or for prototyping, where tight control of dimensional accuracy isn’t required, materials such as fiberglass, high-density foams, machinable epoxy “boards” or even clay or wood/plaster models are often suitable. Tooling costs and complexity increase as the part performance requirements and the number of parts to be produced go up. High-rate production tools are generally made of robust metals that can stand up to repeated cycles and maintain good finish and dimensional accuracy.
New RTM'd carbon composite center hinge fitting withstands 20-ton air load in commercial jet spoiler assembly.
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Soluble plastic tooling cores reportedly offer lighter parts for aerospace and automotive applications.Conductive nonwoven fabrics CompositesWorld
Norafin Industries GmbH exhibited at JEC Americas 2014 its heatable nonwoven materials made of conductive fibers.Low-rate layup tools made cost-effective with high-density polyurethane foam blocks CompositesWorld
Nemesis Air Racing, an air racing team and kit-plane company owned and operated by Jon and Patricia Sharp, use prebonded closed-cell, polyurethane foam blocks to build the Nemesis NXT.RocTool, Ju Teng sign two new production licenses CompositesWorld
Hong Kong-based Ju Teng will use RocTool's rapid molding composites manufacturing technology in the production of touch tablet and laptop/notebook computer components.Epoxy composite tooling material CompositesWorld
Sika Deutschland GmbH has introduced Biresin CR132 ST and Biresin CR136, epoxy resin systems for composite molds.