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Engineers designed a rigid plastic base that grips on to the product. To do this, a dual-durometer plastic extrusion was required.
ABS plastic was used to give the base its rigid form. A channel that allows the base to slide onto the component was lined with flexibe TPU "grippers." This ensured it was held firmly in place during product assembly.
The opposite side of the base features a slot that accepts the silicone gasket.
While Lauren frequently bonds EPDM profiles to a plastic base, the silicone compound used in this application would not adhere to plastic in the same way.
By using a mechanical connection, the manufacturer was able to take advantage of silicone's performance properties while improving the assembly process and throughput.
The need for adhesives to attach the gasket was dramatically reduced, resulting in greater manufacturing efficiency.
In other applications, a dual-durometer silicone seal may provide a solution. Rather than plastic, a dense silicone material is used for the base of the seal. This allows it to slide into a channel on the part.