It’s likely that many of the plastic products you come across in everyday life have been made using vacuum forming, a thermoforming process that we at Bridgewood UK specialise in. In this blog post we look at just some of the industries that take advantage of vacuum forming in order to produce attractive, cost effective and highly durable plastic products.

It’s likely that many of the plastic products you come across in everyday life have been made using vacuum forming – a thermoforming process that we at Bridgewood UK specialise in.

This is because making plastic parts using vacuum forming has a number of significant advantages over other processing techniques, including shorter lead-times, low tooling costs, design flexibility and a wide choice of cost effective plastic materials and finishes.

Below are just some of the industries that take advantage of vacuum forming in order to produce attractive, cost effective and highly durable plastic products.

Agriculture

The agricultural industry use vacuum formed plastics for a variety of different uses – from components for vehicles used solely for transportation, to large parts for heavy duty agricultural machinery. Many vacuumed formed plastic parts for this industry are intended for heavy duty use outdoors and therefore must be particularly rigid, impact resistant, and also have high levels of UV protection. Take a look at our case study about a set of aesthetically pleasing curved exterior panels that we designed and made for a large manufacturer of agricultural machinery.

Automotive and transport

Plastics are invaluable to the automotive and transport industry – both for aesthetic and functional purposes. All you need to do is look inside the cabin of any modern vehicle, or consider how the lightness of plastic can reduce fuel consumption in a bus or even an airplane, to understand just how much this industry rely on attractive and cost-effective plastic parts. You will find vacuum formed plastic parts and on a whole host of transportation vehicles including cars, vans, trucks, buses, airplanes and boats. This case study about our development of large engine hoods and components gives a brief insight into the many demands and complexities of plastic parts required for vehicles and transport.

Construction Machinery

The construction sector rely very heavily on strong and tough off road vehicles and therefore have a specific requirement for materials that are low maintenance, have an excellent strength-to-weight ratio, and versatility, durability and corrosion resistance. It seems like a long list to fulfil but vacuum formed plastic parts can tick all of these boxes and are also economically attractive due to their cost effectiveness. Vacuum formed plastics are used for a variety of parts for construction machinery but it is particularly in the exterior plastic panel applications for off road vehicles that they can add a huge benefit. Take a look at our blog post about tough and durable thermoplastic Olefins to find out more about the thermoformed exterior panels that we developed for an International manufacturer of earthmoving equipment, using TPO – a new engineering plastic with some very unique benefits that appeal to this sector.

Packaging

The incredible versatility of plastic makes it the perfect material for product packaging. It is cost effective, lightweight, hygienic, flexible and durable, and is therefore used worldwide for a variety of packaging applications – these include food and drink, medical, health and beauty, baby products, vending packaging, protection packaging and containers. In fact packaging is the number one usage of plastics across the globe.

Renewable energy

The popularity of renewable energy is soaring as more and more countries start to realise its many benefits. As this happens the demand for lightweight but strong plastic parts for this industry also continues to increase. Essential and high performance parts like this ABS Rotor combining blades and shroud, that we moulded for a wind turbine manufacturer , rely heavily on the vacuum forming process to provide perfectly even circumferential thickness and weight distribution, and plastic finishing techniques such as resistance to UV light.

How we can help with your vacuum formed products

Over our 30+ years of experience in vacuum forming we have designed and made thousands of plastic vacuum formed products and applications for a variety of different industries and sectors.

Call our vacuum forming specialist team on 01482 646464 to find out how we can ensure that your plastic parts and components are produced economically and at a high quality every single time.