Sizing and cooling tanks are crucial components to any downstream plastic extrusion process, as they allow for controlled sizing and cooling of extruded products.
Sizing Tanks and Cooling Tanks from RDN Manufacturing
At RDN Manufacturing, we carry four types of sizing and cooling tanks for post plastic extrusion:
- Precision vacuum sizers. Our highly-advanced patented vacuum system enables precision sizing small tubing with no contact, even with difficult materials at high extrusion rates. It features enhanced controls for precise vacuum with a digital display to assess temperature, vacuum levels. Also accommodations for faster reservoir access to reduce downtime.
- Vacuum calibration and sizing tanks. When you need conventional sizing of hollow rigid profiles or tubes, our custom engineered direct vacuum system is the answer. It is tough enough for the most challenging conditions with casters, leveling screws, and handwheels for accurate adjustments, and noise mufflers for safer, quieter operation.
- Post extrusion water baths and spray tanks. Our stainless steel water baths and spray tanks feature corrosion-free piping, adjustable drains, and a wide range of lengths and cross sections to fit your needs. Optional features include mist spray cooling, water recirculation, and heat exchanging systems, as well as multi-pass cooling on our medical series tank.
- Cooling table for “short run” plastic profile extrusion. For the most versatile air extrusion cooling, our cooling table features fully adjustable nozzles, a pressure regulator with moisture separator, and position lifter arms. The second 10′ section has blowers stationed above and below the extruded product.
Sizing Tank Overview
In the context of plastic extrusion, sizing refers to managing the controlled shrinkage of extruded tubes or pipes before cooling. There are three key elements of the sizing process:
- Tooling for calibrating the exterior dimensions of the extrudate
- Differential air pressure to create the interior shape
- Heat transfer via a cooling medium
A sizing tank works together with a vacuum process to apply outward pressure that maintains the outer diameter or shape. We construct our tanks to withstand the powerful vacuum forces without collapsing. Once the vacuum process is completed, if additional cooling is required the extruded product is then cooled by immersion or spray tank to finalize the dimensions.
Cooling Tank Overview
After sizing, additional transfer of heat from the plastics in a uniform way to maintain the dimensions. Plastics are excellent thermal insulators, which makes heat transfer a challenge. Cooling tanks conduct quick and even heat transfer to ensure the final version of the product conforms to the desired dimensions without distortion, reduced shrinkage, or warpage. This process can be accomplished by a water bath cooling system.
Air cooling is a cost-effective cooling method that doesn’t require extensive tooling and is ideal for short production runs. Parts that are water cooled in a tank undergo one of two different processes. The extruded part can undergo a cooling water bath by flooding the tank, or it can be sprayed with cool water. Spray tanks are sometimes the most efficient of the two water cooling methods; however, the spray nozzles require regular maintenance.
Precision Extrusion Sizing and Cooling Equipment from RDN
RDN Manufacturing leverages cutting edge technology to produce the most innovative parts available. Our dedicated team of experts focuses on creating state-of-the-art custom tooling and equipment for our customers. To find your ideal sizing and cooling equipment, see our product details page or contact us today to discuss your project needs.