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Thanks for all the tips! I was just going to add the shims under the heating bands, and notice there is a wire mesh between the bands and the barrel (see photo). Does it matter if the shims (of aluminum cans) are on the inside or outside of the mesh?
Thank you for your clear advice! I got the machine from out of the country and I’m going at this alone for the moment, so I appreciate your use of layman’s terms!
You are right that the thermocouples are loose; I will get a couple of hose clamps and secure those as you describe.
There are no gaps by the clamping bolts in the heaters, but they do feel tight, with only a tiny bit give – do you still think I need to add the shims?
I have one final question – the bottom heating ring has a tendency to turn along with the bolt or mold when I screw /unscrew it. There has also been some plastic that has come out from somewhere I cannot see and is now stuck under that heater (see photo). I’ve still been able to use it (before you advised to pause and get this fixed), but it doesn’t seem like a good thing. Do you have an easy fix for that?
And the round things I’m making are soap dishes; a couple have turned out alright 🙂
Sorry, I’m not exactly sure what part the thermocouple is…Do you see what you need in these photos?
Thank you so much for your helpful response! I had not seen those instructions on the download, and will follow them to a T next time I give it a go. I think the “lumpiness” I described is probably the “sinking” from plastic being too hot. Please see the attached photos of my PID display and mounted thermocouples.
I’m still concerned though that the set temperature on the barrel differs so much from the temperature reading (as seen in the photo). And quite often as I’ve injected into the mould, the last bits of plastic that come out are not even melted.
Thanks for your response!
It seems that injection moulding may be the way to go, thanks for the suggestion.
Another question – a lot of polypropylene here is clear with some coloring for labels that are flush with the rest of the containers…do I need to worry about impurities in that coloring, or is that what adds the marbling effect on finished products?
Do you ever come across lead or cadmium added to polypropylene? In the below article lead and cadmium are mentioned as toxins that make recycling polypropylene difficult:
I just wrote to the company that makes most of them, Kwik Lok, and asked them.
The bread bag tags are made of HIPS (High Impact Polystyrene) and Polystyrene (6).
I live in Taranaki, New Zealand, and have been thinking about a similar idea. I’ve just come up with a design for refillable toiletry containers. My intent was to use these for shampoo paste, sunscreen, deodorant, etc. I’d love to collaborate!
Email me at [email protected] and we can see if we can help each other.