If you are into disc golf, you may often wonder how disc golf discs are made. In this article, we are going to answer that question in detail. So, let’s get to explore!
Table of Contents
What is Disc Golf?
Disc golf was primarily known as ‘Tin lid golf’ which is basically a disc flying sport. The game was first invented at the beginning of the 19th century and was at first played in 1926 in Canada. The methodology of playing this game is quite similar to that of playing golf. In this game, ‘disc’ is the principal object, just like the golf-ball where a player’s target is to land the disc to the targeted hole within a minimum number of throwing.
As discs are the most vital piece of disc golf, you should have a solid idea on them. Here, we have provided a rich description of how disc golf discs are made:
How to Make a Disc Golf Disc:
For making a golf disc, an ultra-speed procedure known as ‘injection molding’ is adopted. The main principle of this procedure is taking a liquid plastic ingredient into a sealed mold that is generally of the multi-hollow type. The liquid plastic is refrigerated to a solid form just after being poured into the mold. As compound forms can be produced using this method, so slight trimming is the only other finishing needed to make the disc. This procedure is also used comprehensively to manufacture different kinds of products just because of these benefits. Learn how to dye disc golf disc here.
A molding engine is normally used for this procedure. The engine needs to be armed with hopper, responding screw, heated container, mold clamp, and a nozzle. The engine- heats the plastic until it is capable of flowing freely under force. Then, force is used to insert the liquid plastic into a mold. The mold needs to be shut until the liquid plastic has turned into a solid form. Generally, a cooling process is used to solidify the plastic quickly.
What are Disc Golf Discs Made of?
With the advent of commercialization since the 1950s, the primary material for discs is plastic, i.e., .polyethylene. Sometimes, other materials have been tried but failed. Some additional chemicals are used a bit for speed, durability, stability, and design. The ingredients or raw materials used in making disc golf discs are not very diverse. Disc golf at the primary stage used tin lids or something like that readily available. It is crucial to note that the quality of plastic varies significantly. The variations come mainly from the differences in blend and type of plastic usage.
Plastic variations determine the following:
- Types of the disc (Driver, mid-range, putter)
- Type of golf courses
- Glowing in dark
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Innova, for example, uses the plastic types presented below:
You may be surprised to know the impacts of the plastic in making disc golf discs as presented below.
How Disc Golf Discs Are Made (Step-by-Step Guide)
Disc golf disc is getting popularity as a game and pastime all over the world. During the initial stage, it was easy and straightforward to some extent to produce discs. Time has changed a lot. there are so many professional championships that are held worldwide. So, producing discs requires lots of considerations and thus entails some complex and commercial steps. We will focus on the step-by-step process of making disc golf discs in the present world. Note that, these steps may not be followed in all factories, it is a typical representation that will allow knowing the full process.
1. Preparation of the Raw Material
The first step is the compounding phase. A distinct compounding process is used for preparing each type of raw material. In the case of thermoplastics, the compounding process turns the plastic into dried, open-flowing pellets by the process of extrusion and dehydration that typically occurs at the time of manufacturing. When the compounding phase is finished, the substance is tested for humidity content and normal molecular heaviness.
After that, the pellets are transported to the golf disc manufacturer companies in 500 to 1,000 lb. boxes or in 50 to 100 lb. bags. The pellets are gathered into a big container to which color and other load-increasing seasonings are added. A bonding material like oil is used to make sure the color stays permanently. Next, the barrel is shaken thoroughly to mix all the resources together. Disc golf putter reviews are here.
2. Feeding the Material
In this step, the un-liquefied pellets are put inside the hopper. The hopper feeds the ingredients into the container. The hopper is often armed with a dehydrating method to remove additional humidity from the pellets. Also, there is a magnetic mechanism for removing the iron pollutants. Generally, all of the compounding processes occur during this phase.
3. Transporting and Melting
In this stage, the ingredients move into the heated extruder container from the feed unit. Here, the ingredients are slowly liquefied while it is carried down from the container to the front. Pointed screws provide compression, pumping, mixing, and decompression. Thermoplastic ingredients need elongated screws of density proportion ranging between 2 to 3 or more.
When enough liquefied material is available to seal the mold, the engine gets prepared for injection. The liquefied material is injected inside the mold using the nozzle path, under a great force that normally ranges between 10,000 to 30,000 psi. Typically, one or more gate is used for injecting the material inside the mold. Every gate is fed by a runner or channel. For the perfect injection, the mold needs to be properly vacuumed.
5. Cooling and Removal
In order to speed up the process of solidification, a freezing technique is integrated inside the mold. It commonly includes using hovels inside the mold, through which a refrigerating liquid like water is dispersed. After the end of this process, the clamps unseal the mold for allowing the telescopic arms to remove the solid material. During this phase, the screw starts rotating and melting new ingredients for the next shot.
After the golf disc is detached from the mold, it goes through a decorating process to make the disc attractive. The decorating process involves printing the name of the golf disc, name of the company and other data or designs. Generally, three methods are used for decorating golf discs. Among these three, the hot imprinting one is the most popular. Other techniques include smearing ink using a letterpress machine or silk curtain.
7. Packaging and Dispatching
After all steps from the collection and preparation of raw materials to decoration are complete, the final step of packaging and dispatching to the destinations come to the frontline. Packaging varies from brand to brand and from product to product. Discs may be packed at box, cardboard or plastic bag.
How Vibram Disc Golf Discs Are Made are disclosed below.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What temperature is used to melt the plastic?
Answer: The temperature ranges between 320 degrees to 450 degrees Celsius.
What types of machines are used for making golf discs?
Answer: It actually varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. However, the most common one is the Injection Molding Machine.
Why the cooling process is necessary?
Answer: The cooling process helps to solidify the material quickly. It also helps to get the desired shape of the disc.
How to design molds?
Answer: Auto CAD is a good weapon to design disc molds.
How to produce discs with different weights?
Answer: Injection profile and material concentration help to produce discs of various weights in the same mold.
So, this is our detailed guide on how disc golf discs are made. I have provided a summary of the complete making process in this article. As you can see, producing golf discs is not as easy as it may seem. The making process includes a lot of quality raw materials, well-functioned machines, skilled workers who have patience and a sense of timing. This is how a perfect golf disc is produced.
If you have any questions/suggestions, do not hesitate to ask in the comment box below. we will get to you as soon as possible and try to incorporate the value you add or expected to be added.