A North American water heater manufacturer sought a cost effective plastic drain valve assembly which would replace more costly traditional brass valves used in the water heater industry. In addition to meeting the the part's strength and durability requirements, the valve body required several thread features, both internal and external. The part would also need to be produced in very high volumes to meet the JIT supply demands of the client's manufacturing plant.
As part of the R&D process, Melet's engineering team identified a resin that could withstand the stresses normally sustained by the previous metal part. Next, Melet designed and built a high production four cavity mold capable of producing the valve body component. The internal threads are released from the tooling using hydraulic motors to unscrew the cores. Since the valve has a Y-shape design the mold also required mechanical slides to release the non-threaded cores. The tooling includes interchangeable inserts which allow multiple shank lengths to be produced from a single mold. To meet the client's JIT supply needs, Melet ships the part in quantity to a Melet warehouse facility near the client's manufacturing plant for picking by the client as required.