|Polyamide snap connectors replace threaded aluminum in automotive air conditioners.|
They also reduce assembly costs for Tier ones and OEMs that can now eliminate assembly tools ordinarily needed for threaded connectors. The snap connector helps eliminate torque on the tubing that can damage the assembly. Additionally, the snap connectors may boost air conditioner life because they eliminate corrosion between the nut and block.
Viking Plastics, Corry, Pa., maker of the connector, needed a polymer that would not only withstand punishing heat under the hood but also resist engine oils, hydraulic fluids, and automotive A/C oils. Long-term heat-aging performance and creep resistance were also key for the design. Viking worked with resin maker DSM Engineering Plastics, Evansville, Ind., during early development. They together selected a heat resistant Stanyl polyamide (nylon 4/6) that is highly crystalline with a melting temperature of 295°C.
Stanyl's toughness and high mechanical strength combine with exceptional flow to broaden design freedom. It also boasts of high stiffness, good fatigue qualities, and creep resistance at temperatures up to 220°C. It resists spike temperatures to 270°C. High flow coupled with good weld-line strength make it a shoe-in for ultrathin-walled parts.
In addition to air conditioner tube connectors, Stanyl finds use in other automotive applications including powertrain components, charge air coolers, EPS and ETC gears, motor sensors, and chain tensioners. Flame-retardant grades for UL compliance are also available.