- Reduce Part Cost by Reducing Weight and Scrap
- Increase Strength
- Vary Wall Thickness in Same Part
- Vary Amount of Fiberglass—Focus Strength Where Needed
- High Stiffness
- In-Mold Coating Capability
- Large Parts
- Highly Automated
- Utilize Foam or Solid Urethane Systems
- Lower Tool Costs
LFT (Long Fiber Technology) is a one-step structural reaction injection molding (SRIM) process that replaces the traditional two-step SRIM process. The traditional process requires the machine operator to manually place a fiberglass preform or mat into the tool prior to pouring or injecting the polyurethane RIM system.
LFT is helping to automate the polyurethane SRIM process for producing composite parts. It permits the use of lower-cost fiberglass rovings and reduces the amount of scrap material that must be trimmed from the finished part. All of these benefits make parts more economical to produce via LFT.
In the LFT process, a fiberglass chopper is attached to the polyurethane dispensing mixhead, which is attached to a robot. The robot is programmed to move over the open mold cavity, while simultaneously dispensing both the long glass fibers and the polyurethane SRIM resin in an open-pour method. At the end of the pour, the mold is closed to form the part.