One of the hottest trends in automotive design is the resurgence of chrome in trim, door handles, and other decorative touches to impart a high-end, luxury look. SABIC Innovative Plastics introduces its latest portfolio of breakthrough materials that have been optimized for chrome plating.
These specialized grades of Cycoloy and Cycolac resins, featuring extremely low stress and superior adhesion to the metal layer, are aimed at helping automakers easily incorporate jewel-bright chrome details into their designs. SABIC Innovative Plastics has a long history of working side-by-side with leading automotive OEMs and suppliers to help them achieve competitive differentiation through new design options.
Special grades of Cycoloy polycarbonate/acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (PC/ABS) resin and Cycolac ABS resin have been optimized by SABIC Innovative Plastics experts for both the injection molding and plating processes to deliver high quality and high yields.
This is especially important due to the relatively high cost of chrome plating. In addition, the use of plated plastic components vs. all-metal parts avoids the expense of secondary operations including milling and polishing. Lightweight plastics also help with weight-out for improved fuel economy. Finally, plastics offer greater design flexibility than traditional metal.
- The use of a chrome effect is a great way to give passenger vehicles a more upscale look, and the best approach today is the use of metallized plastic - for simplicity, weight savings, and design freedom - said Dirk Noordegraaf, operations manager, Application Technology, SABIC Innovative Plastics. - To help the auto industry leverage the popularity of chrome effects with optimal results, SABIC Innovative Plastics is working with local customers to develop materials that deliver the elegance of chrome effects without all the challenges. With our Cycoloy and Cycolac resins, designers are able to provide the fashionable details consumers are clamoring for.
Chrome plating is not only a fairly costly process, but can also be unforgiving in terms of quality. Because plated automotive parts that are designed to grab attention come in high-gloss and high-reflective finishes, even the slightest defects can create a negative impression of the entire vehicle.
SABIC Innovative Plastics` Cycoloy CP8930 (high heat), Cycoloy CP8320 and MC1300 (medium heat) resins, and Cycolac MG37EP resin, can help platers minimize rejects and reduce system costs through higher yields. These materials provide easier molding than similar heat-resistant resins; feature a special impact modifier that ensures consistent adhesion of the chrome layer; and are formulated for extremely low stress to ensure uniform plating behavior.
These SABIC Innovative Plastics materials are excellent candidates for chrome-plated applications such as exterior trim, interior trim, running boards, wheel covers, roof racks, and mirror housings that require stiffness, impact strength, and processability.
The use of two materials in one component where only one material is plated is a recent development in chrome plating. SABIC Innovative Plastics is offering a unique combination of materials that is extremely selective in plating.
When Xylex X7509 or X8409 resin grades are combined with the special Cycoloy and Cycolac resin grades and chrome plated, the Xylex resin will remain completely free from plating. This can offer unique cost savings and design freedom for a range of applications including chrome-plated day and night designs, partially plated logos, buttons, and other trim components.