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July 25, 2002

1 Min Read
Inmold technique for no-paint, Class A parts


Check out this inmold decoration technique offered by DPI Automotive. It produced the wood grain console for the Chrysler Concord (shown right) and LHS, and also provided the carbon fiber pattern for the Chrysler 300M.

DPI makes the inmold appliqués from preprinted foil that is laminated to a thermoformable substrate, usually ABS, PC, or TPO. In addition to preprinted films, DPI can produce PC film with a custom laminate and thermoform it onsite. The pattern on the laminate can be made to reproduce almost any design imaginable, such as wood grain, leather, geometric designs, or solid colors.

Other finishes include body color matching paint and even brushed metal. For instance, automotive molder Pine River Plastics is working with DPI on a satin nickel finish for the interior of the new Chrysler Pacifica.

Appliqués are thermoformed, die cut, inserted into a mold, and backfilled with a lower-grade resin, producing a Class A surface part that doesn't need painting or topcoating. According to DPI's Len Poole, this is where the process differs from roll-fed foils. "In other systems, the resulting part has a low scratch resistance and must typically be topcoated, adding a secondary process," says Poole. "This is not the case with our inmold appliqué process."

Contact information 
DPI Automotive
Grand Rapids, MI
Len Poole
(616) 451-3061
[email protected] 

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