Thermoforming is the process of heating a plastic sheet, or film, to where it is soft and pliable, yet still a solid. Then, the heated plastic sheet is placed on a form to take the specific designed shape with the help of either pressure, vacuum or both. After the formed sheet cools, excess plastic is die cut to become the final product.
This method of thermoforming offers many great advantages for packaging such as lower costs, durability, customization, and quick tooling and turnaround time. Here is a closer look into these advantages especially when compared to injection molding:
1. Lower costs. The tooling costs for thermoformed packaging and trays tend to be much less than tooling costs for injection molding, especially as the items are larger. In fact, thermoforming molds can cost just a fraction of what injection molding tooling can cost. The lower costs are ideal for smaller runs of packaging products. Also, note that tooling costs with PreferPack often are far less expensive than the industry average.
2. Short production and lead time. Depending on the complexity and size of the packaging products being formed, it is possible to form several different products with the same tooling. This can cut your packaging production time shorter in terms of weeks over injection molding.
3. Wide range of products for many different industries. Thin-gauge thermoforming is ideal for disposable cups, lids, containers and clamshells used in the food industry as well trays, blister packs and other packaging materials for a wide variety of retail and industrial sectors from electronics to cosmetics to auto parts. Thermoforming also offers the precision and quality control for medical device packaging and trays.
4. Better finished product. Injection molded pieces have seams, or weld lines, where the molten plastic met, creating weak points and surface imperfections. Thermoformed products are made from a single sheet of plastic film, eliminating any weld lines or weak points, making this type of packaging more impact resistant.
Thermoformed trays and packaging allows for high volume, lower cost production that no other form of packaging can offer. You can contact us to learn more about the advantages PreferPack delivers with thermoforming of many different products, or call us at (877) 284-7752 to ask us how can help you develop thermoformed packaging for your business.