Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) plastic is a durable, rigid, and impact-resistant thermoplastic substance. Despite its toughness, ABS is easy to machine using techniques like:
Ideal for many different applications, ABS can be produced in a wide variety of differentshapes, grades, and colors. Since ABS is thermoplastic, it melts rather than burns, and it can be reshaped to fit the requirements of a desired application.
What are the benefits of ABS plastic?
Compared to other plastics, ABS offers impressive:
- Dimensional stability
- Chemical resistance
- Impact resistance
- Abrasion resistance
- Electrical insulation
- Resistance to heat conductivity
ABS has a remarkably wide operating temperature range. Even at low temperatures, ABS remains impressively impact-resistant, and this material can reach temperatures as high as 200°F without melting.
How strong is ABS plastic?
ABS is desirable for its high resistance to chemical exposure and impacts. This substance is a terpolymer that combines acrylonitrile, butadiene, and styrene. Butadiene, which is a rubbery substance, makes ABS resilient and impact-resistant.
Styrene, on the other hand, makes the surface of ABS sheets hard and shiny. This combination of materials makes ABS rigid without being brittle, allowing this polymer to maintain a solid form while easily absorbing impacts that would break other plastics.
What are some ideal ABS plastic applications?
Two particular attributes of ABS determine the application-specific suitability of this type of plastic more than any others:
- Its thermoformable properties
- Its aesthetically pleasing outer appearance
Since they become malleable at relatively low temperatures, ABS plastic sheets are ideal for applications in which a specific curvature is desired. ABS is also an aesthetically pleasing plastic, and it can be produced in a wide variety of different colors.
As a result, ABS is commonly used as the outermost layer of products consisting of multiple plastics. It can be used in industrial, automotive, and appliance applications and offers dozens of different consumer and commercial uses.
How do you use machine-grade ABS plastic?
ABS plastic can be separated into two main categories:
- Machine-grade ABS
- Extruded-grade ABS
Machine-grade ABS is the highest-grade form of this plastic. It is compression-molded and extruded like other forms of ABS, but it is then annealed to improve its structural integrity and eliminate internal irregularities.
The annealing process involves exposing ABS to up to 50% of its melt temperature, which relaxes ABS plastic and removes molded stress. Since producing machine-grade ABS is a time-intensive process, this type of ABS costs considerably more than extruded-grade plastic.
Example applications of machine-grade ABS include:
- Automotive interiors
- Instrument panels
- Communications equipment
- Appliance housings
- Camping equipment
- Sporting goods
How do you use extruded-grade ABS plastic?
Extruded-grade ABS is the same as machine-grade ABS, but it has not been annealed. As a result, it may contain structural defects, and it offers somewhat reduced structural integrity.
At the same time, extruded-grade ABS is considerably more cost-effective than machine-grade ABS. In many applications, the enhanced attributes of machine-grade ABS are not required, making extruded-grade ABS the logical choice.
Examples of applications that are ideal for extruded-grade ABS include:
- Pipe systems
- Storage bins
- Refrigerator panels
- Watercraft components
- Orthodontic devices
- Golf club heads
- Cargo carriers
- Musical instruments
Where can I buy ABS plastic sheets?
Whatever ABS application you might have in mind, we can cut ABS sheets to your specified size at Plastic Zone. Servicing the greater Los Angeles area, Plastic Zone offers a wide variety of machine-grade and extruded-grade types of ABS plastic for sale to fit your commercial or industrial needs.
Whether you simply need ABS sheets cut to a certain size or you require prefabricated custom ABS plastic sheets to make your project a success, we can work with you to deliver the exact ABS solution that will fulfill your unique needs. Request a free estimate by calling (818) 698-2234 today.