Injection molding is among the most-used manufacturing processes across multiple industries. The ability to produce thousands of parts with higher replication is a top preference of several businesses. In addition, this technology supports a variety of materials, including plastics, metals, and glass. On this note, let’s explore injection molding in detail:
What is Injection Molding?
In the injection molding process, the parts are manufactured by injecting materials in liquid form into the design mold. This process works by heating the small material pellets into molten liquid and forcing it through a nozzle into a mold. The internal cavity of the mold consists of the design of whatever parts are being created.
Once the process is completed, the parts are cooled and then taken out from the mold using ejector pins. This process follows a four-stroke cycle — first, the mold cavity is filled with molten material, then cooled to make it harden. Next, engineers open the cavity and expose the part to air and last, it’s taken out from the cavity. For mold manufacturing, engineers use high-quality steel as it can withstand high temperatures.
Why Use Injection Molding?
The image is used for illustration purposes. Zeal 3D Printing is not the owner or creator of the image.(Image Source: Mastars on Unsplash)
The most significant advantage of using injection molding is higher scalability in production. In addition, the price per unit is much lower compared to other processes. For companies looking for mass production with a shorter turnaround time, this method is an ideal choice. When companies opt for a professional injection molding service, they get:
Low scrap rates
Unlike other processes like CNC machining, where a significant part of the block gets wasted, injection molding produces less scrap. Mainly, the wastage comes from the runners, gate locations, and sprue, much lower than other methods.
Higher repeatability rate
Companies can produce thousands and even millions of parts with identical designs and geometric compositions using this manufacturing method. It’s a practical process where businesses need consistency throughout the months or even years.
Supports complex design
Injection molding can produce complex parts with more excellent uniformity. With this advantage, designers have the opportunity to create more efficient products. In addition, this method makes working with gate placement, weld lines, corner transition, and wall thickness easier.
With growing requirements for mass production, several companies offer on-demand injection molding in Melbourne, Sydney and other places.
Some considerations for injection molding
If you’re planning to offer plastic injection molding service by establishing an in-house setup, there are some considerations that you need to keep in mind:
The entry cost of injection molding is higher as you need to establish the complete setup. Then, you have to determine your profit margins by calculating the number of parts you will produce and sell. The cost per unit is lower, but you have to figure out the number of components to reach that level.
While starting with injection molding, begin with simplified geometries and a limited number of parts to help you gain consistency. Then, keep increasing the complexity gradually later in the future; it will help you market the products faster.
The image is used for illustration purposes. Zeal 3D Printing is not the owner or creator of the image. (Image Source: Mastars on Unsplash)
The tool design should prevent defects during production. For this, consider the gate locations and run simulations using software like Mold flow.
The way to optimize the production is to minimize the cycle time as much as possible and use machines with hot runner technology. Keep in mind that even a small design optimization can save substantial time and money. In addition to this, design your part in a way that the assembling work remains minimum.
New advancements in injection molding method:
Technology is constantly evolving, and it’s improving the overall efficiency of this manufacturing method. With various advancements happening around, below are some unique addition to this technology:
- Integrating RFID tags into part production
- Micro-molding — used for producing high precision smaller parts
- Printed Injection Mold Tool (PIMT) — used for high-quality prototyping
Read more about new advancements in injection molding here !
Injection molding is a robust and performance-driven technology that can help you gain an edge in speed and turnaround time. Whether you’re looking for prototyping or mass manufacturing, this technology is ideal for every requirement. So get started with plastic injection molding in Brisbane, Melbourne or where you live and offer better products to your customers.