Plastic Machining for the Electronics Industry

Electronics manufacturers often require plastic machined parts made from glass, carbon, or mineral-filled plastics.  They are selected for their static dissipative, conductive, or dielectric properties.

These materials can be very difficult to machine, while also maintaining dimensional stability and tolerances.  PMI has significant experience with these materials and manufactures successful parts for antenna, microwave, radar, fiber-optics, sensing, and transmission equipment makers.

To learn more about plastic machining in the electronics industry or for an affordable quote, please e-mail us, call us at 888-761-4262, or use our contact form.

Preferred Plastics for the Electronics Industry

The following plastics are frequently used in the Electronics Industry:

  • Celazole PBI
  • DuPont Vespel®
  • PEEK
  • Torlon® Plastic
  • Durostone®
  • Rexolite®
  • Phenolic

For help selecting the optimal material for your application, contact the PMI technical support team.  We understand the unique advantages and limitations of each plastic material and can help you make the best choice for cost, function, and durability.

Celazole PBI (Polybenzimidazole)

Highest mechanical properties of any plastic above 400°F (204°C) and highest heat deflection temperature 800°F (427°C), with a continuous service capability of 750°F (399°C) in inert environments or 650°F (343°C) in air with short-term exposure potential to 1,000°F (538°C).  Lowest coefficient of thermal expansion and highest compressive strength of all unfilled plastics.

DuPont Vespel®

DuPont Vespel® polyimide material provides a unique combination of strength, toughness, wear resistance, and chemical stability at temperatures up to 550°F.  It is used for high-temperature electrode insulators, housings, coil bobbins, and test sockets.

Learn More About Vespel®

PEEK (Polyetheretherketone)

PEEK grades offer chemical and hydrolysis resistance similar to PPS, but can operate at higher temperatures.  Unfilled PEEK offers steam and wear resistance, while carbon-reinforced PEEK provides excellent wear capabilities.  Our latest grade, PEEK HPV, offers outstanding bearing performance.  It can be used continuously to 480°F (250°C) and in hot water or steam without permanent loss in physical properties.  For hostile environments, PEEK is a high strength alternative to fluoropolymers.  It carries a V-O flammability rating and exhibits very low smoke and toxic gas emission when exposed to flame.

Learn More About PEEK

Torlon®

Torlon® is the highest performing, melt processable plastic.  It has superior resistance to elevated temperatures and is capable of performing under severe stress conditions at continuous temperatures to 500°F (260°C).  Parts machined from Torlon® stock shapes provide greater compressive strength and higher impact resistance than most advanced engineering plastics.  Torlon® is ideal for insulators, sockets, coil bobbins, test fixtures and other electronic parts.

Learn More About Torlon®

Durostone®

Durostone® materials are designed and typically recommended for use in manufacturing solder pallets for wave-solder applications of printed circuit boards (PCB’s).  These materials can also be used for carriers in solder paste printing, SMT placement, IR-reflow, and conformal coating operations.  Durostone® materials have excellent mechanical properties at elevated temperatures and are dimensionally stable and able to retain their flatness through repeated cycling in the PCB assembly process.  The low thermal conductivity of Durostone® ensures optimal thermal distribution across the work area.  The base resin used to produce Durostone® provides resistance to the chemicals used in fluxes and also prevents solder pick-up.

Rexolite®

Rexolite® is a unique cross-linked polystyrene microwave plastic.  Two different forms are available: Rexolite® 1422 and Rexolite® 2200 (2200 is a fiberglass reinforced version of 1422). It maintains a Dielectric Constant of 2.53 through 500Ghz with extremely low dissipation factors and is ideal for microwave lenses, microwave circuitry, antennae, coaxial cable connectors, sound transducers, television satellite dishes, and sonar lenses.  Other applications include nondestructive material testing devices, surveillance equipment, radar windows, radomes, and missile guidance system housings.

Phenolic

Phenols are excellent choices for intricate parts, insulating washers, spacers, terminal boards, switch bases, and other electrical components.  G-10 and G-11 glass-epoxy laminates are specified for their extremely high strength and high dimensional stability over temperature.  G-10 and G-11 are used for terminal boards, high humidity applications, electrical equipment, electronic test equipment, and electric rotor insulation.  G-10 is slightly stronger, while G-11 is a better insulator and can take higher temperatures.  FR-4 is a fire-retardant, while G-10 glass-epoxy laminate is used primarily in the printed circuit board industry.