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Introduction

ABS is a thermoplastic polymer that is easy to machine and process, and which creates plastic parts with an excellent surface finish. It offers high impact strength and resistance to extreme temperatures and chemicals and can be finished with processes such as metallization, electroplating, bonding and hot pressing.

Applications: Handheld devices, housings, cosmetic parts, moldings for electrical tools and consumer goods.

Behavior: Molded ABS parts are susceptible to defects such as knit lines, sinks and voids, but material blends such as ABS/PC can reduce sink in thick areas.

PropertiesMetricOther
Density1.01 – 1.20 g/cc0.0365 – 0.0434 lb/in³
Hardness68 – 11368 – 113
Tensile Strength (Yield)13.0 – 65.0 MPa1890 – 9430 psi
Tensile Strength (Ultimate)22.1 – 49.0 MPa3210 – 7110 psi
Elongation at Yield0.62 – 30 %0.62 – 30 %
Elongation at Break3.0 – 150 %3.0 – 150 %
Dielectric Strength18.0 – 50.0 kV/mm457 – 1270 kV/in
Melt Temperature180 – 274 °C356 – 525 °F

Surface Finish

Electroplating

Electroplating can be functional, decorative or corrosion-related. Many industries use the process, including the automotive sector, in which chrome-plating of steel automobile parts is common.

Electroplating Image
Painting

Painting the surface of a part improves its aesthetic appearance and can provide brand recognition to consumers. In addition, painting can have a protective effect on parts.

Painting Image
Screen Printing

Screen printing is a printing technique where a mesh is used to transfer ink onto a substrate, except in areas made impermeable to the ink by a blocking stencil.

Screen Printing Image

Design Guideline

Wall Thickness

Between 1 mm and 3 mm

Keeping walls as thin and constant as possible will reduce warping and sinking

Thickness gradient

Wall thickness should increase by no more than three times

Transition between thicknesses can be made smoother with fillets

Internal edges

Rounded, more than half wall thickness

Add fillet with largest possible radius

External edges

Rounded, full wall thickness plus internal fillet

Add fillet with largest possible radius

Draft angle

Increase draft by 1° for every 25 mm (for parts taller than 50 mm)

Add draft to ease ejection and avoid drag marks

Textured finish

Increase draft angle by 1-2°

Increase draft to ease ejection and avoid drag marks

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