Tip For Better Plastic Injection Molding

A small, but very effective tip for easier plastic injection molding set up is to standardize the clamping slots on the top and bottom plates of all mold bases. This little trick might seem obvious, but it is surprising how many custom molders have every size imaginable in their mold base inventory.

With this method you need only one size clamp, which can be custom made or likely purchased. The set up techs won’t need to be fumbling about for the right size clamp, there will be no shims under clamps and you can be sure the molds are held in place securely.

This is also a good idea from the standpoint of training. There is enough to learn without adding another item to the list of how to set up a plastic injection mold. Once this is in place, it will quickly become a SOP, standard operating procedure.

All your future designs must have this incorporated, which, for some reason, is not as easy as it might seem. You likely will still have the occasional mold that comes in the wrong size, but in time they will all be standardized.

Learn more about plastic injection molding and injection mold making.

Precision Surface Grinding With A Ded-Tru Machine

Over the years I have used a variety of machines to make round cores and core pins, but the Ded-Tru is probably the best inexpensive toolroom precision grinder.  I am sure there are high-end CNC grinders available that can do the job faster and maybe better, but, for the money, the Ded-Tru is a great machine.

Not that I like running it, in fact, I really don’t!  However, you gotta do what you gotta do to get the job done, right? The reason I don’t really like using it is because you have to just stand there and do the same procedure over and over again, without ever varying the method.

On the other hand, this grinder can do some very impressive work. It also requires a high degree of skill and patience in order to be used efficiently. Not just anybody can walk up to it and figure out the proper set-up procedures; as well as the endless subtleties of form grinding and concentricity.

Plastic Injection Molding Bosses

Have you ever had an awesome boss while working in anything related to plastic injection molding? Since I have been in this business, which goes back to 1978, I have had quite a few good and some less than good bosses.

One excellent boss I had in a plastic injection molding company was from Switzerland and his name was Karl. Every day he was immaculately dressed and on top of everything that went on in every aspect of the company. It took me a long time to get hired and I knew I was in for a real experience, but I wanted to learn my trade from the best.

The very first day I was standing with the foreman looking over some prints. There was no heat on because it was early spring, so the shop was pretty cool. I had my cold hands in my shop coat pockets when Karl spied me. He marched right over, yanked my hands out from my pockets, and proceeded to slap them, telling me to “never put your hands in your pockets!”

I should have known better, having lived in Northern Europe for a few years, but, hey, it was cold! In the end, we became good friends and I did learn a great deal of craftsmanship from this old schoolmaster.

One of the nicest I had was an elderly man who had the unfortunate bad habit of smoking and drinking coffe all the time. This was back before the days of no smoking in the shop, so his fingers were actually yellow from the smoke. What made him nice was that he was so patient with us apprentices, but what made him almost intolerable was his breath!

He used to come up to each of us every morning to greet us and give us an assignment or check on our work. That is when his kindness became his curse. Because he was only inches away from our face we just had to eventually breathe in his absolutely horrible stench of a breath! More than one guy actually gagged and nearly vomited!

Another boss I had was a Russian who grew up in the German part of Brazil.  He could speak so many languages and seemed to know a million people. He was great because he took the time to explain things without making any of us beginners feel like idiots.

What about you, do you have any stories of a good or bad boss in your plastic injection molding or mold making career?

If you are looking for a plastic injection molding company to help your business you could try to check https://www.plasticmold.net/ and get more reference.

Strange Injection Molding And Moldmaker Stories

During my years as a plastic injection mold maker, I have encountered some very strange individuals. Now, they might say the same about me, but these guys were truly over the top.

My favorite case is a man named Mike. I was working in Seattle, and the mold making shop was typical of those in the area because it had so many people from all over the world. In fact, I think we had at least 10 nationalities represented there. Mold makers from Taiwan, Korea, Germany, Portugal, Hungary, Switzerland, Poland, Brazil and various other countries.

Mike, however, was born and raised in the Denver area. He was a Viet-Nam vet and was clearly affected by the horrors of war. He used to randomly laugh like Satan, quite loudly so that anyone in the building could hear. Then he would begin talking about burning gooks and laugh again.

I tried to befriend him, thinking I might be able to help him in some way. I even had him come to church with me once. Unfortunately, he scared the little children and the parents asked my why I brought him there. They were right, I should have just met with him one-on-one, if at all.

The last day I saw him at work, before he took off to rescue his daughter, was when I gave him a ride one Saturday morning to go to work. When we arrived at his apartment, we found him sitting in an overstuffed chair, surrounded by 24 oz. bottles of malt liquor and breathing in huge quantities of marijuana smoke that filled the room.

Somehow he managed to get to work with us, the next day he was gone.

Two months later he returned from rescuing his daughter in Denver. Seems she had some rough times and so did Mike. He came into the shop with no shirt on, broken glasses, and a gun in his pants waist!

He was ranting how he was the best mold maker in the shop and demanded his job back. I don’t know how the very civilized Swiss owner managed it, but Mike disappeared, never to return. Thankfully!

Tell us your story, just leave a comment.

Electrical Connectors

Thermosetting electrical connectors, oilfield electrical connectors, automotive electrical parts, these are just a few of the applications for thermosetting plastics.

In the past, thermosetting plastics were compression molded, which resulted in less accurate finished parts. Compression molding also is more labor intensive.

Injection molding of thermosetting plastics has opened many new applications and enabled designers to develop highly complex product designs. This is readily apparent in the photo above.

A high level of experience is required to effectively use this process. Though the injection molding process is similar to thermoplastics, it is, on the other hand quite different.

Higher melt temperatures, higher molding pressures, more abrasive molding operations, and higher mold temperatures are just a few of the unique aspects.

What are some advantages?

  • Excellent dimensional stability. This is due to the chemical change that occurs during molding. When heated, the part maintains it’s size and shape.
  • Great electrical insulators. Excellent dielectics.
  • Good structural strength. This can be enhanced by using fiber fillers.
  • Chemically resistant. Common chemicals have little effect, but some reducing agents and strong oxidizers can attack it.
  • Excellent for Insert molding. Once the insert is molded in place, it is nearly impossible to extract it.
  • Fire retardant. Very difficult to burn most thermosetting plastics.
  • Extrememly rigid. This is due to the cross-linking chemical change that takes place in molding.
  • Excellent for sound absorption. Might even drown out your teenagers hip-hop music!

Some disadvantages

Probably the biggest drawback is that these plastics are not recyclable. The runners and scrap cannot be reground and used again.

Another disadvantage is that not so many shops are skilled at molding these plastics. Neither are they equipped with the special presses or auxiliary equipment. There are many difficult obstacles to overcome and experience is the only good teacher.

Further reading

A good resource to learn more is at the website of Algix, a major compound resin supplier.

The leading company in China for molding thermosetting electrical connectors, and much more is Sincere Tech Plastic Molding Company. They have over 20 years experience and serve companies in the US, Japan, China, Europe, and Taiwan.

Contact Management

As a business owner, you know first hand just how important a good contact management software and system is for your day to day operations.

Time is money. You don’t need a system that is awkward and time-consuming to use. Ideally, you should be up and running within a very short time.

A big plus is customer support. Online help, a knowledge base of frequently asked questions, email support, and telephone support are all very valuable when you need help.

Features to look for in contact management software

Your contact management software should have the following features.

  • Easy to useIf it is cumbersome and complicated, people will avoid using it, or only use limited features.
  • Fully integratedYou must be able to save time by minimizing data entry. For example: if you enter a name as a contact, you should be able to easily enter that same information in a “To-do” list, address book, send an email, write a letter, set up an appointment and so on.
  • Able to networkIf you have employees, they should all be able to network and have access to the same information. This is a very powerful tool that saves time and confusion. No more fly-away notes!
  • InexpensiveWhat good is a system if it is so expensive that you cannot afford it? Most small business’ are on a tight budget and cannot afford costly errors in software. 

    In my own personal business I use ACT! contact management software by Sage. I love it! It has enabled me, a chronically disorganized and over-committed businessman, to be efficient and organized.In the past, I had tried several other programs, but nothing even compares with ACT!. It is easy to use and my employees intuitively understand how it functions.If you have a customer base and want to keep track of appointments, schedule meetings, keep track of expenses, keep notes on clients, write emails, reports, letters or just about anything else, I would highly recommend it.Click here to Purchase ACT! contact management software today!What are some alternatives?There are other software systems on the market, some better than others. Generally, from my experience, you get what you pay for. If your needs are very basic and you only have a few clients and contacts, you don’t need a highly developed system. A simple notebook might meet your needs.There are a few home-made systems that are surprisingly effective, at least until you get too much information. Index cards, notebooks, 3-ring binders, agendas and so on are all quite useful, though obviously limited.For a business, it pays huge dividends to be efficient and organized. You will be surprised at how easily you can manage your contacts. 

Venture Capital

Venture capital for a new idea or invention

Venture capital is an essential building block for business. In today’s high-tech environment, investors play an increasingly important role in the start up and expansion of business.

Inventors, entrepreneurs and small business owners can find information and resources to help in the search for financing. There is much to be gained, and much to lose in the arena of venture capital.

Venture capital negotiating process

Your success in getting financing depends on several key factors.

  • Preparation
  • Positioning
  • Endurance

Preparation

What if you only have a good idea? The chances of finding a VC are minimal. It isn’t enough to be excited about the next earth-shattering product or service.

Postioning

Make sure that the VC you are approaching has an interest in the area you are proposing. You wouldn’t approach a VC specializing in plastics to invest in a post and beam construction firm. Do your homework by checking their website, asking questions, seeking referrals.

Endurance

You will almost certainly experience setbacks and obstacles in your quest for venture capital for a new idea or invention. Many VC’s say that it is necessary to follow up the intial contact with phone calls, emails, snail mail, and even personal visits.

You must believe in your idea and be passionate about it. Otherwise, why would anyone be interested enough to risk their money as an investment?

What are some pitfalls?

  • Keep your eyes wide open
  • Don’t be in a hurry
  • Communicate with you investor

Wire Edm

Wire EDM has forever changed the way injection molds are made

Wire EDM has become such an integral part of plastic moldmaking that it is hard to imagine how things were done before. When it was first introduced in the 1980’s as a useful machine tool, the common use was in die-making. Over time though, this dramatically changed.

This new process was regarded as almost useless for moldmaking at first because molds have “blind” cavities, unlike stamping dies, which have “through” holes. Wire EDM, or WEDM, by necessity, requires a through hole to operate.

It didn’t take long, however, before WEDM began dominating many aspects of moldmaking.

How WEDM has become so useful in moldmaking

  • Electrodes for sinker EDM
  • Inserts
  • Insert pockets
  • Core pins
  • Mold bases
  • Ejector and core pin holes
  • Contoured parting lines
  • To reduce polishing

Not bad, for a machine once thought of as useless for moldmaking! From a moldmakers viewpoint, WEDM is priceless as a tool. The labor savings from grinding complex core pins, highly detailed inserts with compound angles, and contoured parting lines is truly significant. Not to mention the stress and headaches!


Electrodes

With a little creativity, many electrodes can be cut on the wire EDM. Generally, copper cuts much faster than graphite, and has the advantage of finer finishes and ability to EDM fine details. Premium grade graphite can be used, but is slower to cut.

Inserts

Many inserts can be WEDM’d, then EDM’d in the sinker EDM. This marriage of technologies is one of the best examples of ingenuity using WEDM. Only minor grinding is required after EDMing to remove the tabs left from WEDM. Many of the tedious grinding operations of the past are now a distant memory, not many people miss them either!

Insert pockets

The pockets that are home to the inserts which were wired, now fit precisely. Nearly all of the pockets that are in difficult to reach locations are now routinely WEDM’d. The hassles of tapered sidewalls, fitting corners, as well as size and location are also now a thing of the past.

Core pins

Complex geometry that was previously milled or ground can be machined more accurately and quickly on a WEDM. Angles, sizes and complex radii are all commonly machined on using wire.

Mold bases

The pockets that hold cores and cavities, plus the holes and pockets that hold interlocks and other details can accurately be cut on a wire machine. An added benefit is that the slug from the pocket is no longer a pile of oily chips! It can be used for other components. An additional savings is in end mills and machine time, since most WEDM is unattended.

Ejector and core pin holes

Usually starter holes are drilled in the cores during CNC machining. Later, after heat-treat, the details are hand polished. Then the holes can be finished in the WEDM. This has many advantages: no bell-mouthing of holes, easier polishing, more accurate hole location and size, and better surface finish.

Contoured parting lines

Many shut-off surfaces and molding surfaces can be finish milled, but others lend themselves to wiring. This greatly increases the accuracy of the complex shapes.

Reduced polishing

Of all the operations to produce a high quality injection mold, polishing is the most vexing. There is often just no way around the fact that a highly skilled moldmaker must polish the mold, at great expense. This often causes a bottleneck in the scheduling and delivery. Using WEDM where applicable greatly helps to reduce the time spent polishing.

All in all, wire edm has had a dramatic and very positive impact on moldmaking. It is hard to imagine a modern shop without a WEDM, or access to a custom wire shop. Accuracy, speed, superior fit and finish are all the direct result of wire EDM.

Mold Mamufacturer China

Since China joined the world market in 1999 it has become a major supplier of high quality plastic molds. The industry is centered in two main areas: GuangDong Province, which is about 20 km From KongKong, and Zhejiang Province, which is Closeto ShanHai.

There are lots of mold manufactuer china companies makes for an interesting cooperation between many companies. The ability to use specialized shops for various aspects of building plastic molds enables suppliers to attain quick deliveries while maintaining high quality.

Chinese moldmakers supply quality injection molds to companies all over the world. Molders find that communication and reliability set China apart from suppliers elsewhere.

China has a long tradition of craftsmanship

With the backdrop of the age-old skills of glass blowing and figurine making, China has embraced new technology to advance into the forefront of the global economy.

It quickly becomes evident for visitors that Chinese moldmakers have invested heavily in high-tech equipment. CNC EDM, WEDM, CMM’s for inspection of components and parts, robotics, lights out operations, SLA/SLS prototyping of samples, etc.

There are engineering companies that specialize in the project management of injection moldmaking and plastics molding. Because of the rather unique working relationship the various suppliers enjoy, this management has become refined to be very effective.

Service and Delivery

The mere fact that hundreds of global companies continue to buy plastic molds from China demonstrates the high level of service and delivery. On-time delivery of a trouble-free mold is crucial to make a profit. Buying a cheap mold that requires many hours of frustrating rework before it can run reliably gets old quickly.

An added benefit of doing business in China is the wonderful climate and delightful people! Plus, the labor laws and environmental regulations ensure that human rights are regarded and pollution standards are in place and observed.

Here are some recommended Chinese Moldmakers

GC precision Mould Co.ltd, is a highly developed mold manufacturer China company with many capabilities. They have a working relationship with various companies in the moldmaking areas of China and provide both plastic mold making and plastic molding service.

They produce high quality plastic molds for the automotive, medical, consumer, computer, and telecom industries. You will be able to communicate easily, receive timely progress reports, and can contact them at any time.

Their experience in engineering and their high level of moldmaking ability coupled with their communication set them apart. 

Looking for mold manufacturer china companies? Contact us to get a quote now

Mold Design

A proper mold design increases your chances of success in every way. Injection molding is difficult at best, a good 3D design will give you the edge.

Your moldmaker will be confident that the components will all fit, the dimensions all work together, and the mold will ultimately function as it should.

The molder will have confidence in the mold design, and the operation of the mold itself. You molder won’t be second guessing the design and it will help him process the parts.

Most of all, you customer will be delighted with a clean, flash-free, dimensionally correct plastic part.


What is important in good mold design?

  • A good design must be practical. The moldmaker must be able to produce the components in a logical, orderly manner to make money.Often, close tolerance dimensions are specified when a much looser tolerance could’ve easily done the job.Take an ejector pin plate, for example. Everyone knows that the thickness is basically irrelevant, but usually the dimension given is a close tolerance size. An experienced toolmaker will just ignore the tolerance and proceed, but nowadays, with the specialization of tasks in the shop, a less skilled operator would waste precious time holding an unreasonable tolerance.
  • The 3D geometry must be clean. The fast pace of moldmaking today makes it essential to have efficient, reliable software. The days of vague sketches, or toolmakers making up the design as they go are long gone. There are many excellent companies supplying very usable software programs for designing molds, as well as other things.CNC machines need clean geometry to run properly. If the design is sloppy and the translation of different software messy, the end result will show it. Plus, the operator will have a much easier time running the programs.
  • The design must be clear in it’s function. It is maddening for a toolmaker to spend hours deciphering what the designer means. Information that is assumed or omitted can delay the construction by days and cause unecessary errors.It is always much easier to include notes or details that show what is required than to search it out later on. Once the design is in process, and the information is available, why not simply give the moldmaker the same information? For example, a 3D drawing can visually clarify many questions.

Like almost everyone else in industry, designers have more to do than they can possibly handle. Here is a great resource for learning how to maximize your day, without stressing out in the process.
With the “Make Time For Success!” self-study program. 39 tips from the pros on managing time, effort, and others. Order the142-page ebook to reduce your stress and free up time.


Here are some established mold designers

Best Mold Design Small firm in the Chicago area with vast experience in mold design, as well as product design, 3D modeling, and invention development. They understand industry and the need for efficient and well planned designs that work. They serve the automotive, appliance, medical and consumer markets.

This is a good source to develop an idea, design a part, and design the mold or other tools required. Software includes Pro/Engineer, SolidWorks, and AutoCad.