Monthly Archives: June 2015

Vacuum Thermoforming & High-Impact Plastics

Vacuum thermoforming is one of the processes by which many plastic packages and products are created. Two of the plastics that we often use here at Indepak include high-impact polystyrene and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene. These two types of thermoplastic can be formed via vacuum thermoforming as well as injection molding.

High-impact polystyrene or HIPS is a highly versatile thermoplastic that has the added advantage of being a highly affordable vacuum thermoforming option. It also is known for its impact resistance and attractive aesthetic qualities. It’s quite easy to fabricate HIPS and it even is quite easy to glue or paint this material, making it ideal for many products.

Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene or ABS is similar to HIPS in many ways, a durable high-impact plastic that offers great versatility and good affordability. ABS is formed using vacuum thermoforming or injection molding, and can be used to create hard plastic items such as toys and cases. CD cases, razors and Lego bricks are created using ABS, for example.

The process of vacuum thermoforming is fairly simply to understand. At Indepak, our specialty is thin-gauge thermoforming. To create a product or package very thin sheets of thermoplastic are heated to a specific temperature, placed on a custom mold and forced onto the mold using force, in this case a suction of air or a vacuum.

There are many different types of thermoplastics in addition to HIPS and ABS, and we can help you decide which type of thermoplastic will be the best fit for your product and budget. We can create high-impact cases, trays and even parts for your product using these two types of thermoplastic. For instance, your vacuum cleaner will have parts made of high-impact plastic. The organizational trays that you place in office drawers or kitchen drawers might be created using ABS or HIPS. These are just a few examples of the versatility of these high-impact thermoplastics.

Not only can we design a great product or package using vacuum thermoforming, we help our customers with other services, as well. We can help with package fulfilment, inventory management and even shipping. Our goal is always to create the highest quality products for our clients while also providing a total solution for each and every customer.

Reasons To Love Plastic Thermoforming

We love plastic thermoforming and enjoy designing and producing packaging and products for our clients, it’s our passion. For those who don’t know a great deal about thermoforming, here are some reasons why plastic thermoforming is great.

1. Plastic Thermoforming Is Versatile

Apply heat to plastic and force it into a mold and you can create almost anything, from any shape of package as well as many helpful products. Of course, the process of plastic thermoforming is a bit more complicated than that and a great deal of time goes into design and production, but plastic truly is one of the most versatile substances on earth.

Depending on the type of plastic that we use, we can design blister packs, clamshells, thermoform trays and much more. We can create molds in just about any custom shape or size that you might need. We design products for companies in many different industries including electronics firms, pharmaceutical companies, food and beverage manufacturers and more.

2. Plastic Thermoforming Cuts Costs

Plastic thermoforming can be very budget-friendly. Most thermoplastics quite inexpensive and tend to cost less than other types of packaging materials. In addition, because plastic is so lightweight, using plastic thermoforming for your product or package also can reduce your shipping costs.

3. Plastic Thermoforming Can Be Environmentally Friendly

You might be surprised to find out that plastic thermoforming actually can be a good option in regards to the environment. After all, just about every type of thermoplastic is recyclable. In fact, polyethylene terephthalate and high-density polyethylene are two of the most recycled materials on the planet. These two thermoplastics are accepted by nearly all curbside recycling programs throughout the United States. But many other types of thermoplastic can be recycled fairly easily as well.

In addition, at Indepak, we also can produce packaging and products using thermoplastics with post-consumer grade materials or bio-based materials. Post-consumer grade means that the material was used for some type of consumer product or package and is now being recycled for use in a new item. Bioplastics is an option that can work for some types of products or packages. This is typically is created using thermoplastic starch as well as other materials. We can discuss your options for sustainability during the design process.

Versatility, affordability and sustainability are just three great reasons to be enthusiastic about plastic thermoforming. If you need custom thermoplastic packaging or a thermoform product, contact the team at Indepak today.

Recycling & Thermoform Packaging

At Indepak we are committed to limiting our impact on the environment, and we’ve been passionate about reducing, re-using and recycling for many years. When it comes to thermoform packaging, we have many options that help our clients improve their sustainability as well.

First of all, Indepak goes beyond the ISO 14001 requirements. These are standards that are set for businesses regarding environmental management. Not only are we ISO 14001 certified, we are always looking for new and innovative ways to lessen our environmental impact in every area of our company.

Thermoform packaging is created using thermoplastic materials, and most of these materials are highly recyclable. Two of the materials that you might consider for your thermoform packaging include polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and high-density polyethylene (HDPE). These two thermoplastics can be recycled easily and are accepted by the vast majority of curbside recycling programs in the United States. However, there are many other thermoplastics to consider for your thermoform packaging and these can be recycled in many places throughout the country.

In addition to the aforementioned thermoplastic, there are some innovative bio-based plastics available for your thermoform packaging. For instance, we have some starched-based bioplastics that you might be able to use for your thermoform packaging. Post-consumer grade materials also a great option to consider and we offer that as well. Virtually every material we use during production can be recycled.

In addition to using many recyclable materials, we also create thermoform packaging designs that limit waste. It also is important to note that any excess thermoplastic trimmed off after each package has been created will be recycled and then used again. We also take recycling very seriously in general. After all, as residents of Portland, we are in one of the most environmentally innovative cities in the United States and everyone here is enthusiastic about recycling, reusing and renewing.

For many of our clients, sustainability is very important and we understand and will do whatever it takes to provide you with the best, most sustainable options for your thermoform packaging.

Take a look at our home page and click on the Sustainability tab to learn more about our goals and commitment to reducing our impact on the environment. This page also details some help industry terms in regards to sustainability. If you have further questions or wish to get started with the design of your custom thermoform packaging, call or email today.