25% weight reduction of a PP suitcase

25% weight reduction of a PP suitcase

Taking into account the weight restriction applied by most of the Airline Companies, our customer required us find solutions to reduce weight of a full PP suitcase.

Target:  

To significantly reduce the suitcase weight, by keeping product specification (functionality, robustness and aesthetic) and  respecting production consstrain (max injection machine clamping force).

Activity:

  • Study of an injection pattern which allow a significat thickness reduction without increasing the injection pressure.
  • Moldflow simulation to define the product before the mould manufacture
  • Design and engineering of main shells and accessories
  • Design and manufacture of moulds for shells and accessories
  • Trial and validation

Turn a technical solution into an aesthetical proposal

The possibility to reduce thicknesses without increasing too much the ineection pressure has been achieved through a dedicated flow leaders pattern, which has also an aesthetical function.

A deep MoldFlow study has allowed to find a  pattern with differentiated thicknesses which grants high dimensional stability, even filling and big weight reduction.

Each saved gram counts, by respecting aestethic and functionality: the strict cooperation with final costumer and style designer brought to detailed analysis of each single components of the suitcase (shells, wheels, handles, hooks) and to select for each of them geometries and materials most suitable for the project needs.

 

Product/process enginnering and validation

By combining simulation and prototyping the geometry of each component has been defined  and then the mould list with related configuration was choosen, for the full range : big, medium and cabin size.

n.6 single cavity moulds for shells

n.3 four cavity moulds for 2k wheels

n.3 four cavity moulds for hooks

n.3 four cavity moulds for handles

n. 2 two cavity moulds for rear handle

The moulds have been produced simultaneously under the full responsibility of the Meccanica Generale Group; the samples produced during the trial have been tested, including very severe crash tests.

 

PPlight, the lightest PP suitcase on the market

With an overall weight below 4kg (medium size), the PPlight is the lightest PP suitcase on the market.

In addition to the above, the lightness of PPlight is environmental friendly, as it requires production, process and transport of much less materials, resulting into a reduced energy consumption and emission. For example, a preliminary LCA study indicates that every 100.000 suitcase produced, there is a saving of 270tons of CO2 emission and of 7000tons of water consumption.

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