Plastic Injection Molding
Plastic injection molding is used in the manufacturing cycles and produces parts from thermoplastics as well as thermo setting materials. The material is heated and forced into a die cavity where it will cool, harden and take on the shape of the mold. This process gained notoriety during the 1904’s when parts needed to be manufactured at record pace for WWII. Product engineers and designers will take their designs and send them to a mold maker, who will in turn make the mold used for the molding process.
Molds are typically some sort of metal like aluminum or steel and uniquely manufactured per individual speculations. Various fields of manufacturing have found this type of mold construction to be very efficient. It is commonly used at auto plants for car doors, hoods, trunks etc. Plastic injection molding can also be helpful in the making of toys and plastic components and has become the most commonly used method for part processing today. This process has its positives and negatives as does any other choice.
It can yield high rates of production, small margins of repeatable errors, low labor and material costs and minimal material waste. However, the equipment requires a considerable investment and fairly high production costs. Nearly any kind of polymer can be used in the process seeing that there are over 18,000 known different types that work well in plastic injection molding. The material selection depends on the type of part being constructed, seeing that its use is taken into account. There is such a wide selection of available material that some can be swapped out due to their similarity in strength and function.
Dies and molds are fixtures used in this process. The mold and die are used together to create the shape of the desired object when the hot material is injected between them. You do need to worry about the occurrence of weak spots in some designs depending on thickness and shape. Plastic injection molding machines are made up of a few different parts. You have the material hopper- where the material is loaded and heated. Next, you have the injection screw, that when turned, moves the liquid material towards the mold entrance. Then, we arrive at the heating unit itself. As more industries turn toward automatic manufacturing there will certainly be more and more plastic injection molding machines in use and the scope of their uses will also broaden.
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