Molding Polycarbonate, You Need To Know

Molding polycarbonate is a popular process to machine polycarbonate material to polycarbonate parts with a special shape or size by thermal forming. These polycarbonate parts are used frequently in architecture, agriculture, automation, robot, AGV, medical devices, recreation equipment, aviation, aerospace, pinball machine, eyeglass lenses, equipment housings, etc. Today, we will discuss all information about molding polycarbonate.

Polycarbonate Material

Polycarbonate material is a strong thermoplastic polymer, normally, it is white power, and transparent granular. The molecular structure of these materials provides high stiffness, good thermal resistance, and relatively high viscosity during processing. In the market, it is easy to find polycarbonate materials in the following forms:

ItemSpecificationColor description
Polycarbonate sheetsThickness: from 0.8mm to 20mm;
Max. Width: 2.7 meters;
Length can be customized;
Transparent, brown, grey, blue, green, and custom colors.
Polycarbonate blockThickness: from 20mm to 40mm;
Size: 1220×2440 mm;
Transparent and custom colors.
Polycarbonate rodDiameter is from 12mm to 120mm;
Custom diameter;
Transparent and custom colors.
Polycarbonate tubeDiameter is from 50mm to 75mm;
Thickness is from 1mm to 5mm;
Custom diameter and thickness;
Transparent and custom colors.
Polycarbonate filmThickness is from 0.125mm to 0.75mm;
Size: 1220×2440 mm;
Transparent and custom colors.

The methods of Molding Polycarbonate

Vacuum Forming polycarbonate

Vacuum forming is a simple method of thermoforming plastic sheets, such as polycarbonate sheets/film, ABS sheets, plexiglass sheets, PET sheets, etc.

The process of vacuum forming:

  • Machining a mold of vacuum forming according to drawing, the normal material is aluminum and wood;
  • The work takes large plastic sheets on a vacuum forming machine and heats them to a suitable temperature that makes them soft;
  • Using a high-powered vacuum to reduce the pressure between heated plastic sheets and vacuum forming mold;
  • In this case, the heated plastic sheets will be pulled tightly against the mold;
  • The plastic sheets will be created to the same shape as the mold in a few seconds;

What plastic sheets are suitable for the vacuum forming process?

  • Polycarbonate sheet;
  • ABS sheet;
  • PET or PETG sheet;
  • Plexiglass sheet;
  • PVC sheet;

What products can be manufactured by the vacuum forming process?

The vacuum forming process is used for most products in almost many industries, it is friendly for any quantities, UVPLASTIC is a professional supplier of vacuum forming plastic for most industries, please check the following list for some parts in different industries.

AutomativeDoor, window, skylight, engine hood, door interior, storage box, etc. for refitted vehicles and recreational vehicles;Polycarbonate, ABS
Material handlingShipping trays/pallets;
Storage containers;
Polycarbonate, ABS
DroneDrone housingPolycarbonate, ABS
AutomationCover of AGV;
Cover of automation equipment;
Medical deviceEquipment covers;
Large equipment panels;
Packaging for pharmaceuticals and sterile equipment;
Medical trays and stands;
TelecommunicationsEquipment panels;
Exterior cases for computers;
PVC, Polycarbonate, ABS
TransportationPlastic table;
Seat for subway train;
ArchitectureSkylight domePolycarbonate
AgricultureHydroponic plant trayPVC, Polycarbonate

Pressure forming polycarbonate

Pressure forming is one of the thermal forming plastic methods by using pressure on the plastic sheet to create a special shape. This process works in the opposite way to vacuum forming. Instead of removing the air between the plastic and the mold, pressure forming uses air pressure to push the plastic sheets down on the mold.

Pressure forming can use more than triple the amount of air pressure than vacuum forming, therefore, the edges of the product are high-quality. By using pressured air, the heat can be transferred to the plastic sheet quickly and can reduce the time of the thermoforming process, and it is efficient.

Pressure forming is a good process to replace metal sheets, fiberglass, and wood component. It is also an ideal method for large parts.

Vacuum Casting polycarbonate

Vacuum casting is a good process for creat middle parts in small quantities by using liquid plastic material and silicone mold. It is a very efficient, economical method to create plastic parts.

How does the vacuum casting process work?

  • Create a master mold by CNC;
  • Make a silicone mold;
  • Inject liquid material;
  • Curing liquid material;
  • Open silicone mold for new products;
  • Repair the edge of new products;

Polycarbonate injection molding

Polycarbonate injection molding is the best process to manufacture polycarbonate parts in large quantities, it is a naturally transparent amorphous thermoplastic that is used to manufacture a wide range of materials that require advanced impact resistance and translucent qualities.

What products can be manufactured by the polycarbonate injection process?

  • Brackets and structural components;
  • Eyeglass lenses;
  • The headlight of the car;
  • Equipment housings;
  • Electrical connectors and insulators;
  • Instrument covers;
  • Other plastic parts;


Molding polycarbonate is a very important process to make plastic parts in most industries. It is also suitable for low-volume manufacturing. If you are looking for a trustworthy supplier for your molding polycarbonate parts, UVPLASTIC will be a good choice.


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