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The Long (and Short) of LFI

Romeo RIM was the first company to bring long fiber injection (LFI) technology to North America back in 1999. Since then, we’ve been producing large fiber glass-reinforced polyurethane (PUR) products for customers all around the world.

You’ve probably seen LFI handiwork and not even realized it:  truck fenders, agricultural tractor cabs and hoods, and interior doors, even hot tubs and spas. This list is virtually endless — Romeo RIM LFI products combine lightweight, class A finish, B-side detail and high stiffness and strength. This combination of features is not available in other technologies or at the size and scale that we can produce.

Why is LFI is stronger, stiffer, and lighter than conventional reinforced composites? It’s all about the length of the fibers. In LFI production, glass fiber is chopped into lengths which are longer, rather than short and coated with Polyurethane, contributing to superior toughness.

During the Romeo RIM LFI process, paint or primer is applied directly to the cavity of a product mold (along with an optional protective coating if desired). Our reaction injection molding machinery feeds fiberglass roving (strands of twisted and drawn fibers) into a mix head and chops it, then mixes it with PUR. This mixture is then sprayed onto the cavity of the product mold, which then closes, enabling low-pressure compression molding to take place. Within minutes, the material is cured, unlike competive processes where it takes hours

At Romeo RIM, we take care to invest in not only the highest-quality molding and painting machinery, but also in tool design and care as well as processes, including the little things others might overlook. For example, we’ve made sure to use cutting-edge coatings on our molding technology to prevent damage to products coming out of the mold.

Products made with Romeo RIM’s LFI process stack up well against other processes like resign transfer molding, thermoforming, and sheet molding compound with more design flexibility, better aesthetics, and higher paint durability in addition to lower weight and cost.

Of course, it’s our LFI technology can’t make great products for our customers without Romeo RIM’s “cradle-to-grave” engineering support including logistics, rapid prototyping, certified program management, lean product development and R&D.

For more information, email sales@romeorim.com or call (586)336-5877.