Plastics Information, Plastics Materials

Why can’t I get that color in plastic?

One of the cool things about plastics over traditional materials is the variety of colors it can be made in. Everyone can relate to something that was made out of a plastic in some sort of cool color that made their product standout. In the graphics or decorative world of plastics, colors are somewhat easy to come by and are readily available. In the engineering plastics world, colors are very much a luxury. Black and Natural (technically white in color for many materials) are the extent of the variety unless you get into very exotic medical grade materials. If you really need a color though, this can get expensive in a hurry and it is still hard to find.

The reason colors can be difficult has to do with how many materials are made. In order to get a color, you need to mix enough material in color to fill the “hoppers” of very large capacity manufacturing equipment. In addition, when you transition from one color to the next, there is a large amount of waste generated as equipment purges the previous color and eventually gets to the proper color with no contamination. This just adds costs and time that can make colors in some materials unaffordable or practical to make.

For this reason, copolymer acetal is now being made in a blue color to break away from the everyday, black and white world. The material is standard copolymer acetal, with no special medical grade compliance to add to the cost. It has limited sizes available in rod and plate, if this might be a nice alternative in your application, check us out online or give us a call today.