Assembly

Assembly Services

Protoshop also offers assembly services for the parts that we mold using the following methods.  Our engineers can provide assistance in determining which assembly method is best suited for your application. 

Laser Welding

Two parts may be laser welded together or sheet stock may be die cut and laser welded to a single part. Laser welding forms a very strong bond and can be accomplished using small features but has the drawback that it is only suitable for certain material combinations. Ideally one of the parts is transparent and the other opaque. Laser welding requires that a fixture is designed and fabricated for each weld. Fixturing can typically be fabricated in parallel to mold fabrication so assembly can proceed when molded parts are available.

Image of machine conducting laser welding

Ultrasonic Welding

Ultrasonic welding is used to assemble two parts without the need for fasteners or adhesive. This type of welding is compatible with a wider array of materials and part geometries than laser welding. There are no transparency requirements.

Ultrasonic welding can be challenging if a hermetic seal is required and the features required to achieve a hermetic seal are larger than laser welding. Ultrasonic welding requires a fixture and compatible horn are designed and fabricated for each weld. Horns and fixturing can typically be fabricated in parallel to mold fabrication so assembly can proceed when molded parts are available.

Ultrasonic welding – example of a tongue and groove type weld providing a hermetic seal between the two parts.

Ultrasonic welding

Ultrasonic welding – example of a tongue and groove type weld providing a hermetic seal between the two parts.

Heat Sealing

Heat sealing films may be assembled to compatible plastic parts by applying heat and pressure. The film can be specified to form a permanent or peelable bond to the plastic.

Heat Sealing - Example of a part with a peelable foil heat seal

Heat Sealing

Example of a part with a peelable foil heat seal

Heat Sealing - Example of a formed foil port with either a peelable or permanent foil heat seal.

Heat Sealing

Example of a formed foil port with either a peelable or permanent foil heat seal.

Swaging

Features in a plastic part may be modified using heat and pressure in a process called swaging to assemble inserts, filter media, etc.

Swaging - Example of the part as molded. The tab features highlighted in blue will be swaged.

Swaging

Example of the part as molded. The tab features highlighted in blue will be swaged.

Swaging - After installation of the filter media (shown in orange), the tabs are swaged to capture the filter media in place.

After installation of the filter media (shown in orange), the tabs are swaged to capture the filter media in place.