ABS film: Suitable for a variety of applicationsJohn Moot
Acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) is now an everyday plastic that is widely used because of its surface hardness, high impact resistance and good resistance to weathering, aging and chemicals: for example, as a deep-drawn part for housings of household and electrical appliances. ABS film can be die cut, punched, deep drawn, painted, printed, mechanically processed and bonded.
Properties of ABS film
Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene or ABS in its raw form is a colourless to grey or yellow solid. Compared with impact-resistant polystyrene (PS), for example, ABS generally has improved heat resistance, good ageing resistance and mechanical strengths, such as high surface hardness and good impact strength. Added to this is its good resistance to weathering and chemicals: ABS is insoluble in ethanol, mineral oils, oils and fats, diluted acids or alkalis.
- High strength and stiffness
- high scratch resistance
- high surface hardness
- low water absorption
- good soundproofing properties
- high impact strength, even in the cold
- high mechanical damping
- good thermoformability
- good weldability
- good adhesion properties
- excellent galvanicability
Applications of ABS film
- Parts that are electroplated and exposed to high impact loads
- Vehicle construction e.g. body parts, chromed trim, battery boxes, radiator grilles
- Precision mechanics and electrical engineering e.g. housing and operating parts
- Sanitary engineering e.g. fittings, shower heads
- Other e.g. transport containers, textile bobbins, door and suitcase handles, safety helmets
Additional properties of ABS foil
ABS film can be produced with a variety of additional properties. For example, ABS films can be equipped with antibacterial properties. Additives enable increased impact strength and UV stabilization. Additives can ensure that ABS film becomes flame-resistant. ABS films can be supplied with protective film on one or both sides. In addition, it is possible to add a different coloured identification strip during the extrusion of ABS film.
Variants of ABS film
ABS-SG (high impact resistant, silk gloss)
ABS-HG (high impact resistant, high gloss)
ABS-MA (impact resistant, matt)
ABS-HH (increased heat resistance)
ABS-SE (with fire protection equipment UL 94-V0 or glow wire 650° C, railway standard EN45545R1, classification at 2 – 4 mm: HL2)
ABS-RE (from regrind, mixed colours or reworking, optionally as a blend and/or with additional equipment)
ABS-CO (coextrusion in different material, colour or surface combinations, 2 to 6 layers, rolls or sheets
Bonding of ABS foils with adhesive tapes
3M VHB adhesive tapes are particularly suitable for metal bonding together with ABS foil. They are suitable for bonding the same or different high-energy materials, such as aluminium, steel and ABS (here medium-strength acrylic foam types 4930, 4950, 4912, 4959, 4945).
An adhesion promoter such as Primer 94 (3M) can further increase the adhesive strength on critical surfaces such as ABS film. For the assembly of ABS plastic housings or punched parts as well as the attachment of decorative trim or type plates, 3M adhesive tapes with transfer adhesive of the 360 series are often used.
Delivery forms of the ABS film
ABS film can be supplied ready made up as individual punched parts, as punched parts on a roll, as strip material on a roll, as sheets or as a blank.