Plastic Injection Molding Product and Process Improvements
It’s the job of design teams to always be innovating, creating, and coming up with something more, something better. “Better” can take many forms: better quality, better design, better function, better materials, better cost. Cost improvements are one of the greatest of plastic injection molding advantages, but designers quickly discover that plastic injection molding can also provide design flexibility as well as quality and functional improvements to products. With so many advantages to consider, it’s time to take a look at how plastic injection molding can improve your products and processes.
Plastic Components Make Creative Concepts A Reality
Creativity is part and parcel of the job for designers. In fact, their problem-solving skills and creative approach to life is likely how they wound up in the design field in the first place. Troublesome designs can often be fixed when you step back to take a fresh look at the problem and open yourself up to creative approaches. The use of metal components, for example, can be extremely limiting. Metal is expensive and has very specific tolerance levels in regard to heat and cold and material thickness. It also requires more post-production finishing work than plastic, which further drives up costs and time to market. These are just a few examples that designers will provide when presenting plastic injection molding advantages. Additional benefits of engineered plastics include:
- Lighter weight compared to metal
- Less scrap and what scrap is produced can be melted down and reused
- Reduced weight leads to reduced shipping costs
- Tensile strength is comparable to metal
- Less volatile market prices compared to metals
- Complex designs are made possible
Plastic Injection Molding Advantages Outweigh Metal Benefits
Engineered plastics have made tremendous improvements over the last several years, with more improvements coming every year. We have witnessed our customers save as much as 50 percent in operational costs – with no loss in product quality or function – simply by switching from metal to plastic components.
These improvements are not solely the result of material pricing. Cost savings are also realized by:
- Replacing multiple metal parts with one engineered plastic component.
- Eliminating the need for fasteners, finishing, and assembly.
- Using colored plastic to eliminate the need for post-production painting.
What about performance? Again, the plastic injection molding advantages are impossible to ignore. Expert design ensures that plastic components will perform equally as well as metal parts. There are over 25,000 engineered production materials available today. Engineered plastics have the advantage of being custom designed to meet specific requirements, such as heat tolerances, chemical or electrical performance, or mechanical operation; this kind of customization just can’t be achieved with metal.
The auto industry was one of the first to recognize the myriad plastic injection molding advantages. As fuel economy standards grew tighter, automakers first looked at reducing the weight of cars. This led to a reduction in the use of metal components and an increase in the use of plastic parts. The fact that plastic won’t rust or corrode and is equally as strong only added to automakers interest in plastic parts and components.
Today, we are seeing plastics being used well beyond the automotive industry to include consumer products, toys and computers, medical tools and devices, outdoor products, and manufacturing components. Plastic injection molded products are everywhere you look with more products entering the market every year. Plastics have opened up design possibilities and reduced the cost to market for companies all around the globe, allowing both new and established brands to expand into new markets.
Move Beyond Metal With Help From Baytech Plastics
Baytech Plastics helps businesses make metal to plastic conversions for small component parts as well as entire products. We focus our efforts on reducing your costs while improving product quality and performance with dedicated engineering and design staff, full-service project management, and decades of experience.