1. E-training sessions (webinars).
There will be a series of eight of these,
covering the scope of my traditional two-day seminar, no charge to attend,
sponsored by IDES (www.ides.com). Each will be one hour in length, and attendees
will be able to ask questions before, during and even after the sessions.
In addition, recordings of all the sessions will be available.
2. Private sessions at factory locations
The first two of these were presented on May 12 and May 14. They
can be viewed and heard via the IDES website -- either find them on the
site, or paste the links into your browser. Links and contents are
May 12, The Ten Key Principles
These principles have been the basis for my seminars since 1986:
- Why the material moves through the barrel
- Where the heat comes from, why we need it,
and what happens when there’s too much.
- Why speed must be controlled and how it’s
- Why the real coolant is the resin itself.
- The importance of sticking to the barrel
in the feed zone.
- The dominant role of resin cost.
- The insignificant role of power cost.
- The components of production rate and how
to estimate an expected rate.
- The special importance of melt pressure and
- The meaning of shear-thinning, and
- The counter effects of shear heating and
barrel temperature controllers
May 14, Feeding the Hopper: Materials for
Raw material is fed to the extruder, and is almost always the primary
cost of the operation, so just as we must pay attention to the nutritional
value of what we eat, we must also pay close attention to the material/feed
-- its condition, form and properties. Discussion topics include:
Some definitions: plastic, polymer, compound, resin, olefin, elastomer,
vinyl, styrenic, etc.
Formulation and "vitamins"(additives): stabilizers, fillers, tougheners,
colorants, viscosity aids, etc.
The three densities (solid, bulk and melt).
Flow measurement: melt index, solution viscosities, actual flow tests,
shear rate, melt strength.
Strength tests: reading a tensile curve and a report of multiple results.
Re-use of scrap and trim, contamination and degradation.
Importance of mixing, especially with blends, scrap and micro-additives.
Some quick and inexpensive tests that everyone can do.
The other six sessions will take place in late summer and early fall,
and will cover extrusion hardware, principles, operation and troubleshooting.
These are based on the seminar outline below,
but adapted to individual needs and interests. Charges for such
a session are $2500 for the first day and $1500 for each
additional day, plus expenses, plus travel time at $75/hour, no matter
how many people attend. Some sessions are focused on
training of operators and technicians, others include trouble-shooting
and consulting, and hours can be adapted to fit production needs.
In the future, it may be possible to do this by teleconference
or videoconference, but the best training is still by direct encounter,
plus my direct observation of the equipment and products.
3. My full-length seminar (see
This may be offered from time to time in
the future, such as cool places in the summer or warm places in the winter,
in 1-day or 2-day form.
For more information call 301-758-7788 or e-mail
Introduction to Extrusion Technology
This is an outline of the practical extrusion seminar
that I have presented since 1979, attended by over 4,000
people since then. It is an intensive introduction
for people in the extrusion business.
Part I -- Introduction
We first discuss the ten key principles of extrusion,
then get some basics in plastics chemistry (plastics
are polymers with additives).
Part II -- Hardware
Motors, drive systems, speed reduction,
screw and barrel, the head zone, instrumentation (the
vital signs) and other hardware such as screens and screeners, static
mixers and gear pumps. In private sessions we cover
appropriate dies and downstream equipment.
Part III -- Principles
Limits to output rate, how to estimate both
inpush and output, and what happens in the various zones
of the extruder, the head and die. Simple practical rheology: melt
index, IV and K-values, torque rheometry and shear rate,
and why these things are important.
Part IV -- Operation
Setting conditions, how controllers work, start-up
and shutdown, safety and maintenance. Common problems
in extrusion, with suggested solutions and ways to prevent them from
happening at all.
For further details on the content of this seminar,