When heated to specific temperatures, thermoplastic sheet can be re-molded or formed. Midland can heat bend plastic sheet, also referred to as strip heating or line bending, to give it a well-defined line bend. After bending, the material is normally put onto a fixture and then cooled. After cooling, the material holds its basic form (i.e. sheet) but also holds the bend(s) put into the material during the forming process.
This heat bending process is used with a variety of types of plastics, particularly acrylic, where it is often used to manufacture point-of-purchase displays.
Depending on the requirement specified by the customer, Midland uses a variety of methods to heat bend thermoplastic material such as hot wire, radiant heat and convection ovens. The type of resulting bend depends on the width of the heat source and the thickness of the material.
This process is in contrast to Drape Forming (Oven Forming), which puts larger radii or curves into entire parts.