This website is a comprehensive resource for injection molders and mold makers. These two industries are totally interdependent, yet quite different from one another. They enjoy a synergistic relationship that is mutually beneficial.
On the plastic injection molding side, this site covers the main types of molding is minor detail.
Types of plastic molding
- Injection molding
- Compression molding
- Transfer molding
- Rotational molding
- Thermosetting molding
- Blow molding
- Stack molding
- Insert molding
- Silicone rubber molding
- Metal injection molding
- Micro molding
There are other types of molding that are not including in this list. It is surprising just how many methods have developed over the years to produce the products that we use on a daily basis. Most of the time, we just take it for granted and never give it a second thought as to how these things are made.
Also covered in text and video is how the injection molding process occurs. This is a short demonstration put on by the Society of Mechanical Engineers.
The molding industry is completely globalized. Any product could come from just about any part of the world and be compatible with the entire molding process. The articles on outsourcing are focused on this aspect of the business and are highly informative.
Injection Mold Making
The mold making side of the industry is much more thoroughly covered in this website. This is one of those invisible trades that most people have no clue whatsoever about. It is actually surprising because of the number of plastic items used on a daily basis by nearly every person in the world.
Mold making topics
- EDM , or Electrical Discharge Machining
- WEDM, Wire Electrical Discharge Machining
- CNC Milling, which includes high speed milling, 5 axis milling, milling machine parts, manual milling
- Carbide inserts
- Surface grinding
- Mold polishing
- Mold components
- Jig grinding
- Mold assembly
- CNC turning
- Micro welding
- Tool steels
Injection mold making is a complex trade with an almost endless number of facets. Today’s shops are highly specialized with skilled specialists performing most tasks. There is, however, a limit as to how much a CNC machine can do. That is where the traditional skills come into play.
There is always a degree of hand finishing on any mold. In fact, despite what you might read or hear, there is a LOT of hand finishing with most molds.
Thankfully, most of the tedious work is done by the CNC machines. The complicated set-ups of yesteryear are done routinely in minutes by these highly sophisticated machine tools.
This is another of those hidden professions. Somebody has to figure out how to make all these plastic parts, that is the job of the injection mold designer. He, or she, (I’ve never seen a she, but I know they are out there) has either learned on the job, or taken a course specifically for mold design.
On the job training is most common in the US, because most designers come from a mold making background. It is very beneficial for the designer to come from the shop because the designs tend to be much more user-friendly and practical.
This website also includes a very popular injection mold design tutorial. This is especially good for training apprentices because they can use it over and over again and learn the basics of mold design and mold making.