Vacuum forming and the use of moulds

Vacuum forming South WestVacuum forming and the use of moulds

The majority of people won’t ever need to arrange vacuum forming in South West England. However, this is a process that helps create packaging for millions of products you can find in everyday life. It is a process businesses of various shapes and sizes in many industries rely on.

This version of thermoforming involves heating a thin plastic sheet to high temperatures. That allows it to stretch and take a new form. The process begins by draping the hot sheet over a mould. Then, with the help of a vacuum, it will pull down over it and cool to take its final form.

Manufacturers can make the most of the various benefits of the process. This includes the high volume capability and ease of storing large amounts of products. Along with this is the high quality and low costs which customers are sure to enjoy.

Material choices for moulds

With vacuum forming, the first step is to produce a mould. Typically, this is the part of the process that is the most in-depth.

You can create moulds in different ways. Your final choice will depend on several factors including the longevity of the tool, your end goal, and the resources that are available.

There are a number of mould materials that are commonly used with this process. They include:

  • Cast Aluminium – These moulds might need additional finishing, however the end product will be strong. This is a good choice for a large production run.
  • MDF or Wood – These are better when you are planning on a smaller production run or are teaching the basics of the technology rather than producing usable parts.
  • Cast Resins – When you want to do a bigger production run, this is a good choice as you can sand these moulds to produce an incredibly smooth finish.

There are other materials for moulds that can perform well, however the choice should depend on the needs of your project.


ABS, or acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, is the plastic most often used in thermoforming. It is worth noting that you can use other plastics though. However, the thicker the material is, the more vacuum pull and heat you will need.

Providing vacuum forming in the South West

To ensure you make the best decisions for your project, pick Plastics By Design. We can deliver quality and efficiency thanks to our adept team and fantastic equipment. In addition, you can rely on us to share our experience and product knowledge.

Do not hesitate to reach out to us if you have any queries or if you just want to talk in more detail about our operations. We are proud to be the top name for vacuum forming in the South West.