Great products are the result of the collaborative efforts between a designer and a manufacturer. Both parties add their own ideas to a project and successful collaborations can draw out the best from either party. Manufacturers can educate designers on the attributes and effectiveness of product materials like injection-molded EVA foam. While this material is commonly used for footwear, it has other applications and in the case of PopFoam, the applications are much more numerous.
PopFoam differs from other foams because the design is based on reduced tooling size and the foam “pops” out of the mold. Because of this we can create complex shapes and offer products that are tough, waterproof, and still pliable. It may also allow give us the ability to consolidate multipart constructions to a single part. This can lead to lower unit and development costs, better products, and a chance to enter the market faster.
Working closely with designers allows us to understand what makes PopFoam unique and when combined with our expertise we are able to incorporate PopFoam in creative ways. Building a strong team and finding a trusted supplier with the right materials can lead to the best product possible.
How PopFoam is different from other Injected Molded Foam
Using many mechanical features during the tooling process can make producing foam complex and expensive and it can introduce manufacturing and design dilemmas. Our EVA-based injection molded foam is unique because it can be processed using two-shot molding. Combining separate sections of foam into a single part simplifies the design process and enables the possibility of dual densities and colors. Production is easier and the product lasts longer, performs better, and looks more distinct.
Our iPad covers are an example of how PopFoam is constructed using standard open close tools combined with an internal mandrel to create a reverse draft and enable an extreme undercut. These iPad covers have six sides of support to provide comprehensive protection, something plastics can only achieve by molding two halves and mechanically attaching them together.
This construction also enables solid surface objects to have hollow cavities, like in the case of massage rollers or balls. When the mold opens, the mandrel supports the part and the foam expands outward. This same effect is not achievable with many other types of foam, and duplicating this characteristic demands additional parts and assembly.
The PopFoam Process
Our foam is one of the few foam materials in the market able to display vibrant colors, highlight surface detail, express remarkable physical properties, and take on complex geometry. PopFoam jumps from the mold, so creating complex internal undercuts is much easier. The foam expands out of the mold then shrinks down. Controlling the shrink allows PopFoam to be molded to fit mating products or assemblies. The result is elaborate shapes with fewer design complications.
PopFoam is created from a proprietary process, and this process enables us to expand the application of injected molded foams into a variety of markets, including automotive, medical, fitness, and consumer products.
PopForm can perform in ways other foam can’t. Designers who collaborate with our industry-leading, end-to-end support will be able to manufacture unique designs and create exceptional products.