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For manufacturers that produce complex, critical-use plastic parts and components, making sure that exact specifications and dimensions are met during production is crucial to success. Even a miscalculation of just .005 inches can spell disaster for the product and cost thousands to fix.
Tooling is arguably the most important part of the entire injection molding process. Not only does the tool need to be perfect to ensure all design specifications are met, but it’s also one of the most expensive, time-consuming fixes if something isn’t right—especially if you’re working with a third-party toolmaker. Working with an outside toolmaker for projects requires a lot of back and forth communication, leaving room for misinterpretations and sometimes delayed responses.
Are you considering injection molding for the production of a current or upcoming plastic parts project? If so, you came to the right place. Injection molding is the ideal process for the production of a wide range of complex plastic components, and can benefit OEMs across many different industries. It’s consistent, affordable, and creates durable, high-quality plastic parts that can withstand just about any environment.
Injection molding is a dynamic, complex process that, simply by the nature of its many variables, requires some testing and adjustments to get it just right before you can start production. Some manufacturers, however, choose to focus on completing the the mold first and then build the process around the finalized mold, thinking this saves time and money. However, this approach typically results in production problems that slow the whole process down, and reduces quality and repeatability.
In many industries, injection molding is a proven solution to complex plastic part engineering and design challenges. However, not all projects are well-suited for the process and will not fully benefit from injection molding efficiencies.
When it comes to designing and launching a new product or component, there are three things design engineers can always count on:
Complex injection molding is relied upon in a number of industries to make the production of plastic parts and products more efficient. Crucial to realizing this efficiency though, are design and manufacturing process improvements that allow for the consolidation of multiple existing parts into a single complex injection molded plastic component. Below are examples that demonstrate the benefits of part consolidation and how to achieve them:
Much has been said about the ability of scientific molding to provide optimal control of the injection molding process – and in turn – help manufacturers that use precision-molded parts keep pace with competitors and be first to market. Scientific molding improves part quality by removing guesswork from the injection molding process, but many OEMs still have questions about what really makes it work in the first place. Is it just injection molding with high-tech equipment? The answer is actually the engineers who specialize in it.
In 2012, President Obama finalized standards to increase fuel efficiency in cars and light-duty trucks to nearly 55 mpg by model year 2025, with the aim of saving Americans more than $1.7 trillion at the gas pump and reducing U.S. oil consumption by 12 billion barrels.
While there are several ways to meet this mandate, reducing the car’s weight is one of the best – and easiest – ways to improve fuel economy without impacting other design and safety factors. That's why many automakers are rethinking production and using injection molded plastic components instead of metal assemblies.