Injection moulding involves the use of thermoplastic ma […]
Injection moulding involves the use of thermoplastic materials including many thermoplastic elastomers to produce first class single & multishot finished products. Injection moulding is ideally suited to large production runs as it requires relatively expensive tooling that would require high volumes to ensure a return on investment. Tooling, often made out of high grade tool steel and weighing anywhere from 5kg to 1 tonne can cost £10,000 and up.
Typically injection mould companies run multiple shifts using machines operated by semi-skilled employees that often tend multiple machines ensuring that resin bins, ie the feed for the injection moulders, are full and finished items are in good order. Many machines today are automated and use a mix of conveyor belts and robotic arms to remove the finished plastic moulded components and place them on a moving belt which sends them to a storage bin. Many companies run 3 x 8 hour shifts for a total of 126 hour productivity a week.
Most injection moulding machines can handle a full range of materials and thermoplastic elastomers including PP, LDPE, LLDPE, HDPE, HIPS, PS, ABS, ASA, PC, PA, POM, PBT, PET, PEEK, PPS, TPE,TPV, SBS, SEBS, TPE, TPV and most other grades of polymers. Some materials will require specialist production techniques such as reduced/increased temperature regimes, differing release agents, high injection pressures and custom mould design considerations for wider/smaller channels and sprew overflow.
Plastic injection moulding is by nature conducive to production in a full range of colours. Colours are available off the shelf in a range of Ral and Pantone shades although colour matching can be undertaken by most plastic injection moulders.
Multi-shot plastic injection moulding is a process that involves using several colours or materials in the production of a single product. Multishot injection moulding combinations include two shot, multi-material combinations, insert and over moulding.
Finished plastic parts can be dispatched as they are or assembled to customer specification with screws, labels and general fixtures.
Most companies offer offer advanced production scheduling in support of annual call offs including Kanban & just in time (J.I.T.) options allowing manufacturers greater flexibility in their supply chain management processes.