Injection molded parts and products are common in many industries, so much so in fact that commodity molders are often the go-to for injection molding projects. This can be the appropriate choice in many cases, but for industries requiring specialized devices and components, no aspect of a project can be left to chance. This is especially true in the case of resin selection, since the plastic used in production largely dictates how a part or product operates within the end-use environment. Knowing this information is imperative for critical-use applications, where risk mitigation and performance are paramount.
In Part 1 of our short blog series, we discussed the differences between today’s thermoplastics and liquid silicone rubber (LSR) thermoset resins, as well as their common advantages, disadvantages, and applications. In Part 2, we’ll talk about some of the up-and-coming plastic materials making their way onto the injection molding scene, specifically carbon fiber composites and bioplastics.
The plastics industry has been experiencing rapid growth since 2015. In that time, there have been numerous improvements to the materials, technology, and processes used, benefiting both manufacturers and consumers alike. The development of stronger, more lightweight plastics and thermoplastics has been one of the driving forces of growth, along with the use of recycled plastics and greener processes.
With the freedom to create new features and cost-effectively achieve process efficiencies, it's obvious why many design engineers prefer to use custom injection molding to create complex plastic parts and components.
What isn’t always clear, however, is the myriad considerations required at the onset of the process. Among them is selecting the appropriate materials to make the actual mold as well as plastic injection molding materials for the part. Here are key points to keep in mind when working through it with an injection molder partner.
The complexities of your critical use medical application require you to assemble and manage a supply chain that optimizes expertise and efficiencies from a number of sources. Focusing on singular areas, like injection molding, is important to the successful performance and reliability of your medical components, but a broader view of the project must also be taken to leverage the expertise of your suppliers in order to streamline processes and achieve a faster time to market.
Occasionally clients want to know about new materials that have specific properties which may be better-suited for different or expanded applications of the products they make—properties such as heat or chemical resistance, hardness, flexibility, friction coefficient, clarity, biocompatibility, etc.
Plastics manufacturers and suppliers continue to announce new grades/blends of resins, often with expanded capabilities that give product designers more freedom in developing next-generation products. Injection molders like Kaysun Corp. who stay in touch with manufacturers and distributors about material advances can keep clients up to date on new compounds that could benefit their product lines, or even boost market share.