Plastic Part Design – Introduction

Dates: To be verified

Duration: 4 days –9.15 am to 5.00 pm each day

Location: 7 Centre Court, Blyry Business and Commercial Park, Athlone.

Accreditation: Plastic Part Design

Full Fee: € 1495 . Includes course manual, lunch and refreshments

Course code: 5N4285

Programme overview

While this course assumes no prior knowledge about plastic part design it is very beneficial to have prior knowledge of the common characteristics of polymer materials and a basic understanding of principal polymer processing methods. Many existing plastic products and new products converted from metals are redesigned in order to simplify production and reduce costs. Designers have to be aware of the unique nature of plastics and how to effectively design with these materials if useful products are to be made. Existing plastic part designers will need to update their knowledge base to effectively design parts from new high performance polymers for medical, automotive and aerospace applications in particular.

Please bring existing design projects to the sessions for use in the design appraisal seminars.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of the course a candidate will be able to:

  • Construct a basic polymer product design specification
  • Design a basic polymer product from first principles
  • Understand the influence of polymer processing upon design and final properties
  • Understand the influence of specific polymer properties upon design
  • Undertake basic quality appraisal of new polymer products
  • Differentiate between polymer processing, tool design or product design defects
  • Demonstrate and apply a basic knowledge of good polymer design practice.

Who is the course for

  • Designer makers,
  • Product designers,
  • Mechanical engineers working with polymers,
  • Polymer product engineers,
  • Polymer product supply and sourcing,
  • QA assessors of polymer products,
  • Management of polymer product development projects,
  • Processors and manufacturers of polymer products.


Day 1

  • Polymer factors Influencing Design
  • Polymer material properties and the use of a selection matrix
  • Constructing a polymer design requirement specification
  • Influence of polymer processing / shaping method upon design
  • Injection moulded product design practice
  • Exercise: Designing an injection moulded component

Day 2

  • Compression moulded product design practice
  • Blow moulded product design practice
  • Extrusion product design practice
  • Vacuum formed product design practice
  • Exercise: Designing a vacuum formed component
  • Polymer product design theory and best practice

Day 3

  • Polymer mechanics and calculations
  • Polymer project management
  • Polymer product prototyping
  • Polymer Product Assembly & Finishing Techniques

Day 4

  • Practical design session (metal to polymer conversion)
  • Critical appraisal of polymer products
  • Explanation of polymer component design defects
  • Design case study sessions.
  • Assignment tutorial
  • Examination

Trainer Profile

Peter Cracknell has over 40 years experience in the Plastics Industry. Initially he served his time as an injection mould toolmaker (Metal Box), production engineer (Metal Box), senior production engineer (BOC), senior lecturer (LSPT), academic leader in polymer engineering (LSPT), Consulting engineer.

Expertise: Injection moulded part design, mould tool design, plastic materials, processing trouble shooting, experienced lecturer (30 years), BETC assessor for NVQ in Polymer Engineering, expert witness (30 years experience).

Qualifications: HNC Mechanical & Prod Eng, GradPRI – ALSPT First Class hons. C&G Risk Assessment, BTEC NVQ Assessor

Safety Shoes –Not Required on this course

Find out how to achieve a Major Award in Injection Moulding (Level 5)

This programme is a QQI component (minor) award, certified at Level 5 on the national framework of qualifications – see  and is an elective component of major award 5M3080 – Plastics Injection Moulding.

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