Injection molding is a manufacturing process whereby millions of items or products can be produced in record time. The main advantage of the injection molding process is the reduction of production cost by producing myriads of items at the expense of producing one. However, with its many benefits comes its challenges. Some challenges of the injection molding process shall be explored in subsequent paragraphs of this article.
What Is The Downside Of Injection Molding?
Considering that injection molding involves manufacturing products on a large scale, there’s a tendency for little mistakes to have huge consequences – both financially and logistically. Although the margin of error is small, the consequences of injection molding are massive and substantial. Some of the challenges you should expect to face with injection molding include:
- With injection molding, minor design errors may have huge costs consequences
Upfront costs can be expensive due to design, testing, and tooling requirements. If you’re going to use injection molding for the mass production of your products, you need to ensure you get the design right from the start. Designing the injection molding machine can be more complicated than you think; that’s why it’s best to get it right the first time to avoid future complications.
Getting the design right includes:
- First, design the part and the perfect prototype; it’s always best to use a 3D printer and make the prototype on a different material.
- Then proceed to design an injection mold tool to make a sample production of your products(it must be capable of producing at least 300-1,000 prototypes.
- Reviewing and refining every detail in the injection molded prototypes before producing large volumes.
And if you have access to professional and experienced advice, it’d help you create the best design and avoid design errors.
- Prepare for high tooling costs for Injection molding
Tooling is a significant aspect of the Injection molding process and a complicated process. Before successfully producing an injection molded part, you must first design and prototype a part using CNC machining or 3D printing.
Then you have to design and prototype a mold tool that can make a duplicated version of the part in high volume. You need to go through all these stages and test-run them before you get to the injection molding process.
As you can imagine, designing, creating, and refining prototypes is both money and time-consuming, even though it is not common to prototype an injection molding tool. However, it’s necessary if you have to produce parts that will be made in a multi-cavity tool.
When You Need to Adjust Your Injection Molding
Since tools are mainly made of steel which is a tough material, or aluminum, it will be hard to make corrections if there are errors. If you want to include plastic in part, you can always increase the size of the tool cavity by cutting away steel or aluminum.
And if you’re trying to remove plastic from the part, you need to reduce the size of the tool cavity by adding aluminum or steel. This is a complicated process, and you might be required to scrap the tool( or part of the tool) and restart the process. And in some cases, you might be able to add metal into the cavity that is not needed.