Comments Off on Component Foams Specifically Engineered for Automakers
Guest Author: Isabell Wright, Armacell LLC.
For most major car makers, all parts must be made from materials that are on their approved source list. It’s a competitive business and only the best suppliers with a proven track record of quality, new technology, on-time delivery and service will make the cut. Once a material has been included on the approved source list or our fabricator partners have been selected as preferred suppliers, the task is not over. We must continually maintain or improve our specs to stay competitive and meet the high expectations of auto makers and their supply chain.
Armacell’s foam is used in automotive components such as gaskets for sealing out water, air, dust or noise.
FIAT CHRYSLER AUTOMOBILES
In the 1930’s Chrysler was known for its iconic Chrysler building in New York City and affordable luxury vehicles. Now they are known as a maker of family cars including a hybrid. Armacell makes a number of materials on the approved source list for FCA including Monarch 3091® and EnsoLite® EF0 which meet the MSAY 430 spec. Both have the necessary resistance to UV, weathering and acid. They meet the horizontal burn requirements for interior automotive gaskets. EnsoLite EF0 has the added benefit of being a super soft and conformable, semi-closed cell, crushed foam that works well in applications that require the material to spring back to its original thickness.
Armacell made more than 6 million square feet of EnsoLite SF0 in 2018
TOYOTA MOTOR CORP
For 75 years, Toyota has disrupted the market and revolutionized manufacturing. As a maker of cars that are known for efficiency and reliability, Toyota stands by their brand. It makes sense that they insist on suppliers that do the same. Armacell makes a number of products that meet the tough Toyota TSM 1501G spec for automobile parts. Monarch 8002 is a 100% EPDM bun that has a dependable resistance to corrosive acids, UV and weathering. That means the material will hold up to the abuse auto parts take over time. EnsoLite IG1, manufactured in continuous rolls or sheets, has excellent resistance to oil, fuel and flame. These qualities make EnsoLite and Monarch great choices for gaskets and seals in automotive design.
Click Here to Download the Full Automotive Component Foams PDF.
As flexible material specialists, the CGR Products team offers years of experience in converting foam material into gaskets and components. Our in-house precision cutting services include rotary and flatbed die cutting, kiss cutting, slitting, splitting, knife cutting, and more.
Comments Off on CGR Products News Release
CGR Products News Release: Growth Leads to a 30,000 sq ft Expansion and New High Volume Manufacturing Machinery
Click Here to read the full news release.
Comments Off on Heat Sealed 3M™ Thinsulate™
CGR Products has been supplying various types of 3M™ Thinsulate™ materials to the automotive market for more than 10 years. The 3M™ Thinsulate™ NVH material (noise, vibration, and harshness) is used in a variety of applications across many different industries and provides a wide variety of sound absorption and dampening properties.
The Advantages of 3M™ Thinsulate™
3M™ Thinsulate™ NVH Material provides a reliable acoustic solution for various automotive applications. 3M™ Thinsulate™ is engineered to provide high-performance sound absorption. Specific products are engineered to assist in the creation of lower profile products and reduce mass in the automobile while also reducing noise around the vehicle. 3M™ Thinsulate™ is water repellent to absorb minimal moisture; thus, no need for an additional waterproof layer. It is also resistant to mildew growth, eliminating the risk of unintended odors.
Heat Sealing Thinsulate™
CGR Products supplies custom cut 3M™ Thinsulate™ to the automotive industry utilizing a heat seal around the perimeter of the part. Some of the benefits of a heat seal include:
- Preventing contaminants into the part. If your part is located in an area prone to dust, dirt or any other foreign contaminants, a heat seal is an ideal way to keep much of the substance out of the part.
- CGR can supply custom cut Thinsulate™ in a variety of ways, such as individual parts stacked in a box, or perforated on a roll. If a heat seal is used, the parts will retain their shape and remain stable dimensionally.
- Visually Appealing. If you have a die cut part that is visible, you may be interested in a heat sealed edge. This type of edge will provide a more finished look as opposed to an open, fibrous part.
Keep in mind that for most die cut Thinsulate™ parts, the heat seal is not needed. However, if there are OEM requirements or if you are looking at exterior parts, a sealed part may be what you are looking for.
Consider CGR Products when you are developing sound and vibration dampening. With over 140,000 square feet of manufacturing and warehouse space and over 100 top-quality machines, CGR serves a diverse range of clients, including those in the automotive industry. To learn more about our capabilities within this field, download our automotive application guide, or visit our Sample Gallery to view a portfolio encompassing all the industries we serve.
Comments Off on To Fuji or not to Fuji Test your Gaskets, That is the Question
Many variables can affect gasket sealing such as internal pressure, temperature, gasket design, and flange load. Sometimes it is necessary to dig a little deeper into the actual sealing picture when a difficult or critical sealing situation is encountered. In this article, we will explore a process we call “Fuji Testing”.
How Fuji Testing Works
Fujifilm Prescale is a polyester based film that contains a layer of tiny microcapsules. The application of force upon the film causes the microcapsules to rupture, producing an instantaneous and permanent high resolution “topographical” image of pressure variation across the contact area. The use of this tactile sensor film is one method CGR Products uses to help customers see a “Static” picture of how the gasket is sealing in the current application.
We place the Fuji film between any two surfaces that touch, mate or impact. Apply pressure, remove it, and immediately the film reveals the pressure distribution profile that occurred between the two surfaces. Like litmus paper, the color intensity of the film is directly related to the amount of pressure applied to it. The greater the pressure, the more intense the color.
Analyzing the Fuji Data
The principle way in which CGR Products uses Fuji film is to determine if the current gasket design is producing an acceptable seal to satisfy the customers’ requirements. In our example below, you are looking at a currently designed gasket where its highest pressure points are at the bolt holes. The bolt pressure points left a softer area in the middle of the flange.
If it is determined that the sealing pressure revealed by the Fuji film is not acceptable, CGR Products can use the film data to determine a possible revised gasket design. These tests can also reveal that a material change is all that is needed to satisfy the sealing requirements. Using the same example, this is CGR Products proposed design and material change after Fuji analysis.
To answer the question as to whether a Fuji analysis is right for you, Ask yourself if the potential warranty cost to your company is worth the time and effort. Let CGR Products help with your sealing issues so we can work together to solve potential warranty problems before they occur. Feel free to contact us with questions or dig deeper into our capabilities by clicking on our website.
Comments Off on Material of the Month: Felt
CGR Products stocks a large variety of materials for a wide range of applications. Flexible rubber sheeting, adhesive solutions, and fiber materials are just a few of our specialty options.
Our Material of the Month series spotlights some of our favorite materials and their unique applications. This month, we’re discussing Felt.
What is Felt?
Felt is a very versatile and resilient industrial fabric that is manufactured using different processes.
Needle Punch Process:
A fiber such as polyester is interlocked using a machine with thousands of needles moving in an up and down motion. Heat is then applied using a calendar roll to make a smoother surface and remove fuzziness from the felt. Calendaring can also be used to produce a firmer sheet. A binder can be added to felt that needs to be thermo-formable.
Wool or wool blended with other yarn are woven into cloth and then felted using steam and pressure to interlock the fibers.
Wool fibers or wool blended with other fibers are pressed together with steam and pressure that allows the fibers to naturally interlock.
- Denier: weight in grams of one single thread of fiber 9,000 meters long.
- Loft = thickness
- Hand: the feel of the felt.
- Weight: ounces per square foot or grams per square meter.
Vibration dampening gaskets, wheel well liners, trunk and deck liners, under carpet padding, and noise absorption.
Vibration dampening gaskets, noise reduction, and lint and air seals.
General Industrial Applications
Industrial sander backing pads, floor protection pads, and oiler pads for slitting and friction applications.
Using Felt for Your Application
As flexible material specialists, the CGR team offers years of experience in converting felt into components to fit specialty projects. Our in-house precision cutting services include rotary and flatbed die cutting, kiss cutting, slitting, splitting, knife cutting, and more.
For more information about applications and fabrication possibilities, visit our Materials Page. To discuss any Felt options for your next project, please reach out to our team today.
Comments Off on Three Capabilities You Might Not Have Known About CGR Products
Here at CGR Products, we use a variety of cutting and fabricating capabilities on a daily basis. However, we do some fabricating that might seem “out of the norm” from our core manufacturing. In this article we will highlight three things you might not have known about CGR Products capabilities.
Metal Fabrication Capabilities
All three CGR Products facilities have the ability to fabricate high volume metal parts. Each location has die cutting presses capable of cutting thinner gauge metals, typically in roll or sheet form. In addition, our Waukesha, WI plant has 2 abrasive waterjet machines capable of cutting many types of thicker metals. We produce specialty gaskets including head gaskets with fire rings, and metal encapsulated gaskets. Watch our video below of a high volume metal composite being die cut.
Displays and Lettering
CGR Products has the unique capability of fabricating foam lettering and displays in high volumes. These items can be plain, adhesive backed, or magnetic backed. We can cut foam up to 9.00″ thick in a variety of colors and densities. We work directly with the retail store design firms to meet their specific display goals. Examples of our work can be found in Grocery Stores and retail shops in the Southeast. Visit our Open and Closed Cell Foam Materials page for examples of the types of foams we work with.
CGR Products has the specialized capability of wide format foam perforation. Foam perforation is typically found as underlayment in sporting fields to allow for water drainage. Our perforation process can cut material up to 60″ wide and run roll to roll. Our unique process allows the slugs to be removed while cutting, saving time for the end user. Once perforated, the rolls are plastic wrapped and labeled. Rolls are typically shipped in truckload quantities ready for the end user to install.
With over 140,000 square feet of manufacturing and warehouse space and over 100 top-quality machines, CGR serves a diverse range of clients. To learn more about our capabilities, click around our website or visit our Sample Gallery to view a portfolio encompassing many of the industries we serve.
Comments Off on Rotary Die Cutting vs. Flatbed Die Cutting: Which Should You Use?
Die cutting is frequently used to fabricate unique shapes from rubber, plastic and foam materials.
Before starting a die cutting project it is important to discuss all specific project requirements — including whether rotary die or flatbed die cutting is the best fit for the job. Each cutting method has its own distinct benefits based on production size, costs, and material.
What is Rotary Die Cutting?
Main Benefits: Holds tight tolerances and ideal for kiss cutting
Best Used for: High-volume orders
How It Works: Rotary die cutting, a highly accurate cutting method, is very cost effective on high-volume orders and produces less waste compared to other methods. As shown in the video, the machine is fed a roll of material which is then passed through the rolling die. This cuts the desired shape from the material and the waste is disposed of into a catcher.
What is Flatbed Die Cutting?
Main Benefits: Provides a more cost-effective option with lower tool and die costs
Best Used for: General cutting and low-volume orders
How It Works: With flatbed die cutting, material shapes are stamped out using steel rule dies and hydraulic presses. This method allows for easy hole removal and web removal from parts, along with quick changeover times to increase efficiency.
Die Cutting with CGR Products
CGR’s team of engineers makes sure to match your project’s needs with the right die cutting machine for the job. The products we die cut from a variety of flexible non-metallic materials can be supplied in continuous rolls, sheet form, or individual parts for your unique application.
Ready to get started? Visit our Supplier Material Library to find your material and contact us about your next project.
Comments Off on Die Cutting vs. Waterjet Cutting: Which One Should You Use for Your Project?
More cutting methods are available today than ever before. While friction sawing used to be the primary industrial material cutting option, there are now nearly a dozen viable choices.
Not all cutting methods are created equal — which isn’t to say that one is categorically better than another, but rather that they all have their own strengths. To ensure the accuracy, efficiency, and cost effectiveness of your next project, each designated cutting method specified for a particular part should be a major consideration starting in the design phase.
Waterjet cutting, exactly as its name implies, uses highly pressurized jets of water to cut through soft materials. When harder materials such as metals or plastics are needed, abrasive mineral can be added to the water to enable the waterjet to cut these materials as well. This method offers several benefits over die cutting and other cutting methods.
Primary among these benefits are the clean cuts that the process generates.
Many companies consider waterjet cuts to be “finish cuts,” aesthetically acceptable cuts that require no secondary finishing processes. This is important for applications where financial budgets or time constraints are a concern — finishing processes add both time and money to your project.
The second important benefit of waterjet cutting is that it generates little heat, and transfers even less to the material being cut. This is important for a number of reasons:
- It allows for the use of waterjet cutting on meltable and flammable materials — such as plastics, laminates, acrylics, and more — that can’t be laser or plasma cut
- It prevents the release of heat-generated toxins into the workplace
- It doesn’t create heat affected zones on cut parts, thereby eliminating a secondary finishing process that laser or plasma cut parts often require
Waterjet cutters are able to maintain tighter tolerances in their cuts because the cutters are controlled by highly accurate computer software. Additionally, the process creates no mechanical stresses in the material being cut, eliminating the loss of tolerance caused by warping.
Most die cutting processes, including rotary die cutting and progressive die stamping, are continuous processes. In these processes, rolls of material are continually fed into the equipment and stamped parts are continually output.
Simple parts in particular can be produced at great rates. Simple flat cogs, as an example, can be completed in one second with a single stamp. More complicated parts can be quickly manufactured by utilizing a progressive die stamping process.
Particularly important for large volumes of identical components, die cutting creates parts with a high degree of uniformity. Punching a part out with one swift movement prevents variances that can occur in processes that cut a shape around the edges. Tool and die fatigue can occur, but a quality stamper will know his machines and replace affected equipment long before they can impact the quality of the parts.
Because of its ability to create very high volumes of parts with a high degree of uniformity, die cutting is a relatively inexpensive method of cutting. The high output reduces time and, therefore, labor costs, and uniform products reduce losses related to quality assurance.
Additionally, die cutting equipment is fairly standard — many companies perform die cutting, so competition keeps costs reasonable. Tool and die manufacturing can be costly, but high volume part orders can easily negate that one-time expense.
Cutting with CGR
Over the course of more than 50 years, CGR Products has developed expertise with a range of different cutting methods — not only die and waterjet cutting, but also knife cuttingand more. Not every method is the same, nor are they all suitable for any project.
To learn more about cutting methods and other important design considerations, download our eBook, 5 Common Design Mistakes & How to Avoid Them.
Comments Off on Cutting vs. Converting – What’s the Difference?
Don’t Get Tangled Up in Terminology
The CGR team gets a lot of requests for cutting, converting, and fabricating. Fortunately for our customers, we do it all. As far as we’re concerned, these terms refer to the same process — the process of transforming a raw material into a precision component for your part.
If you participated in Manufacturing Day this month, you may have gotten a chance to dig into some of the processes and services from manufacturers across the country. We’re happy to break down some of our cutting capabilities right here, right now.
We specialize in flexible, non-metallic materials at CGR Products — that means custom parts, shapes, sizes and forms for markets of all kinds, cut from an immense range of elastomer, rubber and related thermoplastic materials. Each and every material — and family of materials — comes with specific capabilities to accommodate all types of industries.
Cutting, Converting or Fabricating?
As we said above, we do it all. Some of the specific methods we use to cut and convert materials at CGR include:
Die Cutting: Both rotary die cutting and flatbed die cutting are optimal for high volumes and precise tolerances.
Kiss Cutting: This special type of cutting (or converting) transforms sheets of material into sheets of parts that can be removed individually from a backing or liner.
Knife Cutting: This is one of the fastest methods for producing a part. It’s great for prototypes.
Slitting and Splitting: A shearing process, slitting or splitting takes a large roll and trims it into narrower or thinner rolls or sheets.
Waterjet Cutting: The accuracy and precision of a water jet cutter is ideal for soft materials.
Don’t forget that we also offer custom manufacturing and fabrication for projects that demand molding, extrusion. laminating and beaded gaskets.
Check out all of our available services, or call the team to discuss your particular project today. We look forward to cutting, or converting, or fabricating with you!