Category Archives: injection mold making

Molded Part Surface Finish and Ejection Methods

Injection mold designers must always take into consideration the surface finish required of the finished molded part.  The ejection system in the mold that removes the solidified parts out of the mold cavity or cavities has great impact on the part’s surface finish.  The most common ejection system uses ejector pins which can leave marks on the part, often referred to as witness lines.  

 

An experienced mold designer will position ejector pins in order to place witness lines in an area acceptable to the part print.  The ejection system and ejector pins are housed in the B side of the mold, extending into the cavity during ejection then retracting back into the mold.   Restrictions on ejection must be apparent prior to mold design, if ejector pins cannot be used without damaging the part, lifters can be utilized for proper ejection.  

 

The injection mold design must correspond to the ejection pattern and stroke of the press.  Michiana Global Mold is an experienced injection mold maker with in-depth knowledge of designing various ejection systems to meet customer specifications.  We use CAD/CAM Unigraphics software to design and develop a layout for the ejection system prior to cutting steel.   

 

In some cases, ejection systems must be designed around robotic arms that reach into grab the parts upon ejection.  These robotic systems are called ‘sprue pickers’, as sprue is another term for the runner that is also ejected with the part.  Some ejection systems automatically separate parts and runners, so that they do not need to be separated later.  

 

Whatever your part design, surface finish, or ejection system is required, Michiana Global Mold will design and construct a superior mold with flawless ejection for the specified part surface finish.  We are an ISO registered mold making company with an offshore mold making partner in China.  Contact us today for a FREE design consultation and to speak with a skilled mold engineer.

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Full Service Injection Mold Making Tool and Die Shop

For full service tooling and mold making solutions, Michiana Global Mold offers a wide range of mold making and tooling capabilities.   Our niche, and one area of expertise is constructing precision, custom injection molds for complex part production using quality North American or German Steel with modern equipment and technology.  We meet the tight tolerances and fast deadlines of the Automotive industry, and are a valuable part of many other industrial supply chains.  

Our services include much more than building new injection molds, however, and as a full-service Tool and Die Shop we can offer a wide range of comprehensive tooling services.

CNC / EDM and Wire EDM Machining

With the latest in modern equipment, Michiana Global Mold uses four Charmilles CNC EDM Machines, a Charmilles EDM HD20, a full line of Hansvedt EDM centers, and a 3R and Erowa Tooling Package.  Our journeyman mold makers are experienced in the latest CNC EDM and Wire EDM Machinery and Equipment offering efficient tooling services.  

Grinding

MG Mold has over a dozen Harig grinders alone, in 6 x 12 or 6 x 18 with Grind All attachments, 1 Reid, 2 Boyer, and 2 Proth and 1 Chevalier Hydraulic Surface Grinders.   We can grind any surface area of any product meeting the most demanding of tolerances.  

Milling

With more than 30 different Milling centers, we have the capacity to provide full service for even multi-tool programs with quick lead times.  Our full line of milling centers include 1 Hwacheon 20,000 RPM High Speed Mill, 2 Fanuc Robodrill 20,000 RPM, over a dozen Hurco CNC Machining and Milling centers, 11 Bridgeport Milling Machines and various other milling machines fill our large capacity production area.

Sampling and Inspection

Michiana Global Mold will sample your tool in the selected material, providing first shots to your specification prior to tool delivery.   We provide the highest of quality and inspection services

Engineering Changes and Tool Adaptations

For all tooling processes, including Engineering changes and tool adaptations call on your one stop, full service tool and mold shop, Michiana Global Mold.

Michiana Global Mold has been supplying high-performance tight tolerance precision injection molds since 1952!  Contact us today for a  FREE no-obligation design consultation for your next mold making or tooling project.  

 

Hot-to-Cold Injection Mold Making Experts

 

 

Most injection molders and injection mold makers are well familiar with the standard mold base, consisting of two halves, referred to as the A and B side of an injection mold.  The standard mold base will have two sides, and gates where the plastic will flow into the mold, through a ‘channel’ to get to the cavity or multiple cavities where the parts will mold.   This standard mold base is also called a cold runner mold.  

 

When the polymer resin hardens in the cavity to form the part, it hardens in the channel as well, which is also called the runner or the sprue.  In most cases, the runner is scrap, and will either be ground up and kept in raw material inventory as regrind to possibly be used in future jobs that will allow it, or it will simply be thrown away.  

 

Some injection molders grind up runners and keep the regrind material, but it can pile up and become an eyesore as most injection molding jobs require the use of 100% virgin material.  Even if it can be reused, it’s value is greatly diminished if it is stored in inventory.  Some molders feel it’s not worth the space on the floor to keep regrind material.  

 

If this runner is large, it can be a huge expense built into the part production, as the cost of the material is one of the biggest, if not the biggest expense of producing the part.   In some cases, especially for extremely small parts, the runner is larger than the part being produced.  In cases such as this it may be advisable to construct a hot runner mold.

 

A hot runner mold has a nozzle at each cavity supplying plastic directly into the cavity, rather than flowing through a ‘channel’, creating a runner.  This is a big saver if you can avoid creating a large runner for a high-volume production job.  

 

Hot to Cold Injection Mold

 

A hot runner mold may be worth the investment in cases of excess waste with high volume, although it is typically quite a bit more expensive than a cold runner mold.  Another option is called a hot-to-cold mold which is a hybrid of the two.  

 

Rather than have a nozzle at each cavity, there is a nozzle supplying a shortened runner system, supplying material to more than one cavity, thus greatly reducing your material cost.  A benefit of a hot-to-cold mold as opposed to a hot runner mold is the cost, it is generally less expensive as there are not as many nozzles and inner workings.  

 

A hot-to-cold mold is often the most economical option, providing significant cost savings with a reduced runner size, while not imposing the added cost burden of a full hot runner mold.  

Michiana Global Mold is experienced at constructing cold runner, hot runner, and hot-to-cold runner molds.  We have been in business for over 50 years, providing high performance tools with complex, precision designs.  Contact us today for a FREE design consultation and to learn more about how Michiana Global Mold can reduce your purchased injection mold costs.  

 

Injection Mold Making Technology

Injection molding is the mass producing of plastic parts with a steel mold, an injection mold, designed with cavities to mold the desired part.  Injection molding uses thermoplastic resins, also called polymers, typically in a raw pellet form, that melt and flow into the cavities in the mold, forming the part, then it is ejected once it hardens.  The time that it takes for the mold to close, plastic to flow into the mold, the polymer to set and eject upon mold opening is called the cycle time.  Injection molders are always looking for ways to increase the cycle time, as time is money and when you can mold a part faster, you can mold more per hour, per day and per week.  

A skilled injections mold maker will have the knowledge to design the mold with the most appropriate attributes to reap the best cycle time while still delivering the desired part to the customer specification.  Michiana Global Mold is accustomed to constructing complex, precision injection molds within +/- .001”, which is about the thickness of a human hair.  

Injection Mold Making Equipment

Injection mold makers are well familiar with the precision equipment used to carve out steel cavities, forming a perfect plastic part.   Computer aided design, and computer aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) equipment is a key tool for designing a perfect tool.  The designers at Michiana Global Mold use Unigraphics CAD/CAM software to design the mold fit for producing a desired part.  This alerts the mold maker and the injection molder to any critical areas such as thin walls or a critical dimensional tolerance that must be met, prior to cutting steel.  

Milling machines, conventional EDM and wire EDM machines are a necessary tool, along with high speed CNC machines, drill presses and grinders.   Michiana Global mold, located in Mishawaka, Indiana with an offshore mold making facility in China, utilizes all of these mold making equipment tools, and more.  We have over 50 years of experience constructing complex tooling for demanding industries such as the Automotive industry where 0 ppm (parts per million) defects is the norm.  The key to a quality plastic injection molded part, is a quality injection mold.  

No one understands this better than Michiana Global Mold, your one stop shop for mold making and tooling services.  We do everything from constructing insert cavities and prototypes to full service high volume precision production tools.

Michiana Global Mold is Registered to ISO9001:2015, delivering custom injection molds to a wide array of industries demanding high volume long lasting performance with the best available pricing.  We offer rebates on multi-tool programs and discounts with offshore molding options.

Contact us today for a FREE design consultation, and to see how Michiana Global will provide value added services in your supply chain.

Ejection Systems and Lifters in Injection Molds

 

The ejection system is a very important part of an injection mold design.  The ejection system must correspond to the stroke of the press, and work in perfect harmony with any auxiliary equipment utilized in the press.  The ejector pins must also be placed where they will eject the part without causing any damage to the part.  This can be tricky with small intricate molded product, it may be difficult to find the right angle to eject an oddly shaped part with critical dimensions or thin walls.  In some cases, lifters must be used just for this purpose, to eject the parts properly and without causing damage.

If lifters are required this must be apparent prior to building the mold.  This is where an experienced mold designer will determine the best placement of any required lifters in the ejection system.  A lifter is part of the ejector plate, activated during ejection.  They are usually angled and slide up when required during ejection, allowing the part to mold all dimensional features properly.  

If auxiliary equipment is attached to the press such as sprue pickers, the ejector system, whether it includes lifters or not, must always accommodate any automated auxiliary equipment.  Sprue pickers are automatic robots that reach into the mold when it opens to grab the sprue, also called the runner, and move it out of the way usually dropping into a bin or grinder to grind up and re-use the material.  A two-stage ejection system is sometimes used with a robot grabbing the sprue, and the parts falling onto a conveyor or into a bin below.  

Utilizing the latest technology with CAD/CAM software, Michiana Global Mold can design your complicated precision injection mold with an ideal ejection system.  We have experience designing and building precision molds requiring complex ejection systems, utilizing lifters, and accommodating the injection molder’s press specifications.  

Contact Michiana Global Mold today for an expert mold design and injection mold construction with quality steel and components.  We have been an integral supplier of injection molds for over 50 years, employing skilled designers and journeyman mold makers.   Michiana Global Mold is registered to ISO9001:2015, adhering all processes to our strict quality policy.  Contact us today for a free design consultation of your next mold building project.

There are Many Advantages for an ISO Certified Company

complex-oem-mold-corvet-part-300x200There are many advantages for an ISO Certified Company, a company that has passed a rigorous audit of their quality systems and processes.  Conformance to ISO9001, a globally accepted set of Quality Standards, provides a uniform set of measurement systems for various organizations, including injection mold makers.   A Certificate of Conformance is issued upon successful completion of a detailed and systematic audit performed by an external highly trained auditor.

These International standards have recently been upgraded to the latest version of ISO9001:2015, upgraded since ISO9001:2008.  For ease in managing systems and audits, the newer standards are very similar in structure to the previous version, although there is added focus on risk management and leadership engagement.

Following ISO standards is beneficial to many companies in various industries including manufacturing, service and health care businesses.  Companies that provide design responsibility such as manufacturers, molders and plastic injection mold makers realize many advantages internally and externally with conformance to ISO9001:2015.

Conformance to ISO is a Valuable Tool

With the sheer volume of global trade, an ISO Certified Company has a valuable tool to provide advantages for their customers.  Conformance provides a level playing field for companies to recognize the level of quality practiced in an organization, in all   It shows your customers that you passed a rigorous audit of all processes in your organization, with the ultimate goal of providing total customer satisfaction.  ISO Certified companies basically provide confidence to their customers that they take their quality, and customer satisfaction seriously.

Not only are OEMs large and small given confidence from their suppliers’ conformance to ISO standards, they are also able to skip some steps in their vendor qualification process.  When a supplier provides an ISO Certificate of Conformance, OEMs do not have to audit as many systems in order to qualify them as a supplier.  This saves Engineers and Management of OEMs time, and money.

Including ISO Registered suppliers provides added assurances that you are working with a responsive, quality minded business.  Conforming to ISO Standards will lead to improved efficiencies.  These continual improvement methods lead to increased profits.

What all of these advantages ultimately lead to is Total Customer Satisfaction.  The reason that any business does what they do, whether they provide services or make widgets is to provide total customer satisfaction.  An ISO Certified Company has the infrastructure in place to provide their customers with total satisfaction through product and process improvement.

Michiana Global Mold is Registered to ISO 9001:2015, implementing our Quality Policy throughout the organization with top down management involvement.  We have been supplying top-quality, custom precision injection molds for over 52 years.  Contact us today to see how we can assist you with your injection mold building needs.  

 

Injection Mold Makers and the Automotive Industry

QC Plastic

Automotive injection mold makers have enhanced the auto industry for decades now, and for good reason.  Injection molding provides consistency, high volume and low cost. It takes an injection mold maker with speed, efficiency, and a main focus on quality and continual improvement to supply automakers with satisfactory product, service and price.

Advanced Product Quality Planning (APQP)

Automotive injection mold makers must practice APQP to satisfy the requirements of automakers today.   During this process the cross functional team reviews the product and process design and development, product validation, and assessment with corrective action.  This ensures that any changes are identified, improved design and implementation techniques are addressed, and resources are allocated correctly.  APQP is a vital step for automotive injection mold makers.

ISO 9001:2015

Automotive injection mold making companies are well familiar with the quality standards established by ISO9001 and ISO/TS16949, which is the globally recognized quality management standard for the automotive industry.

ISO Registration brings together standards from across the United States and all of Europe and provides a framework for best practice with regards to the design and manufacture of products for the automotive supply chain. By following these policies, automotive mold makers are continuously evaluating their products and processes for current effectiveness, and areas of improvement.

Total Customer Satisfaction

Injection Mold makers today must practice continual improvement in all processes in order to achieve total customer satisfaction. In the Automotive industry, you need a mold builder to be responsive and act quickly, while considering all options and offering the best tooling practices to the automotive customer.

 

Responsiveness to any and all issues, engineering changes, documentation and sharing cost reduction initiatives are all standard practice for the experienced automotive injection mold maker.

 

 

Michiana Global Mold is Registered to ISO 9001:2015, implementing our Quality Policy throughout the organization with top down management involvement.  We have been an experienced injection mold supplier to the automotive supply chain for over 52 years.  Contact us today to see how we can assist you with your automotive mold making needs.