Liquid silicone rubber (LSR) is a type of rubber that has many uses in a variety of industries. From medical to baby products, it is a popular choice for molded parts because of its unique chemical makeup. Here are some things to keep in mind if you’re considering using LSR for your next project.
The main advantage of liquid silicone is that it can be injection molded quickly due to its fast cure cycle. Unlike thermoplastic elastomers that need to be heated prior to injection, liquid silicone can be injected directly into a mold without heat. This allows the production of large volumes of products at an incredibly fast rate.
LSR is also highly resistant to extreme temperatures. In contrast to thermoplastic elastomers that lose their flexibility at low temperatures, liquid silicone stays flexible down to -58 degrees Fahrenheit and retains its properties even under heavy loads. This makes it an ideal choice for automotive components like seals and gaskets.
Another benefit of liquid silicone is that it has excellent electrical insulating properties. This feature makes it suitable for electrical applications such as data cables and mobile phone cases that protect the device from shocks and drops. It is also used in sports gear from shoes to wetsuits, and it can be easily shaped for a comfortable fit.
Because of its durability and resistance to a variety of chemicals, liquid silicone can be molded into products that come in contact with food and other household items such as cooking pans, cupcake liners, and rubber spatulas. It is also safe for medical and infant products that require a durable, non-toxic material, including baby bottle nipples and prosthetics.
Liquid silicone has superior mechanical properties when compared to other types of rubbers, including a high tear and tensile strength as well as flexibility. It is also a good lubricant and has high temperature tolerances, making it an ideal choice for automotive and industrial applications. It also has a low water absorption rate, which helps prevent rusting and corrosion.
There are two basic types of liquid silicone: RTV-1 and RTV-2. RTV-1 is a single component that can be mixed with pigment for color, while RTV-2 comes in two parts that need to be mixed before use. RTV-2 also has a faster cure time than RTV-1 and can be cured with a platinum catalyst.
Liquid silicone rubber is easy to work with, so it’s a popular option for DIYers who want to make their own custom molds and products. When buying mold-making kits, choose a product that requires no vacuum degassing and has a Shore A hardness of 30 or higher. If possible, find a clear plastic container to use for your project. This will ensure that none of the product goes to waste, and it will be much easier to see what you’re doing. Once you’ve poured the product, allow it to cure for a few hours before using it. For the best results, be sure to follow the instructions carefully.