Category Archives: injection molds

Precision Injection Molds Meet Customer Specifications

Injection mold designs today must meet tough customer specifications, calling for critical fill areas with precision mold designs.   Careful planning must be taken when designing complex molds for critical applications, ensuring consistent packing and filling to tight geometric tolerances.  A qualified mold design engineer has several important considerations when beginning a complex injection mold construction, beginning with a carefully planned mold design.

CAD/CAM for Mold Design

Computer aided design and manufacturing is a valuable tool for injection mold designers, providing accurate 2D drawings and designs to meet customer specifications.  The use of CAD/CAM is beneficial when constructing molds for any industry, especially when designing and constructing injection molds for the automotive industry.  

Unigraphics and SolidWorks are two of the most technologically advanced software design programs used to satisfy the complex demands of the automotive industry.   Mold Flow Analysis is another valuable tool to identify potentially challenging fill areas, especially when using a specialty resin that may be unfamiliar to the molder.

These computer simulations are part of a thorough Advanced Product Quality Planning (APQP) set of procedures which ensure a successful mold launch.  APQP procedures are critical to the planning phase as following a detailed set of procedures identifies any issues with resin, geometric challenges such as a thin wall or critical dimensions that must remain within +/-.001” for proper functionality.  

Michiana Global Mold utilizes CAD/CAM software as part of our thorough APQP procedures, to ensure a quality constructed mold for even the most complex of mold designs.  As an ISO registered injection mold making shop, we are experienced with providing a quality mold made to customer specifications, on time and within budget.  We work closely with our customers to develop a successful mold launch to meet even the strictest of specifications.

Contact us today to speak with a knowledgeable design engineer, and Download our FREE Book on Design Considerations for Different Molds.  

Michiana Global Mold is an injection mold design and mold making company, constructing precision molds to various industries since 1964.  We are an ISO registered injection mold making facility satisfying the strict requirements of the Automotive industry with high quality precision molds.  Contact us today for a FREE design consultation.  

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Choose the Proper Gate Location in Injection Molds

The gate is the mechanism that allows the plastic resin to flow into the mold, and every plastic part design must take careful consideration of the type and the location of gates.  There are various styles of gating mechanisms typically used in injection molding, and each style will have an effect on the finished product.  The style of gating chosen can affect the visual appearance of the part, the likelihood of warping or sink marks, and proper packing to meet dimensional tolerances.

 

Avoid Defects from Gate Location

 

To avoid defects when processing, place your gate location at the heaviest cross section for maximum fill and packing to avoid sinks and voids.  Experienced mold designers will also know when to consider adding a second gate location, which may be necessary in complex geometrical shapes to obtain proper fill throughout the part.  

 

The location of the gate should allow for automatic or manual de-gating, designed with the minimal length of flow path to minimize visual flow marks.   In cold runner molds, the part is usually ejected attached to the runner and gate, de-gating removes the part from the runner system.  Some processes include automatic de-gating with robotic arms that grab the runner out of the mold separating it from the part or parts.  

 

Gates in Hot-Runner Tools

 

There are basically two types of gating systems used in hot-runner tools, where the plastic is injected directly into the cavity to avoid runners altogether.  In a hot-runner tool, the gate may be either a thermal (or hot-tip) gate, or a valve gate.  The hot-tip gate solidifies the resin at the tip nozzle immediately upon high pressure injection into the cavity, stopping the flow of plastic to the cavity.  

 

A valve gate is used when the plastic may not solidify completely upon injection, and therefore a valve slides over to cover the nozzle tip and stop the flow of resin.  Either type is effective and cost efficient when used properly in a hot-runner system mold.  

 

Michiana Global Mold is experienced with constructing cold and hot-runner tools, with various styles of gating mechanisms involved.  We are skilled with determining the optimum gate location for precision molds required to produce complex geometrical parts.

 

Michiana Global Mold has been exceeding customer expectation with high performing injection molds since 1964.  We have vast experience with all types of molds and mold base components. Contact us today for a FREE design consultation and to speak with one of our knowledgeable design engineers.  

 

High Quality Precision Production Injection Molds

Production injection molds are used to mass produce plastic injection molded parts.  Injection molding is the producing of specially designed plastic parts by injecting with pressure and clamp force, plastic in a molten state into cavities carved out in a steel mold where the plastic will harden and set to the shape of the mold, thus producing the part.  

 

Injection mold makers sometimes produce a prototype tool to test out a part design and function prior to manufacturing full production requirements.  Production molds are used for long term production requirements.  A prototype tool is used only for short runs to produce sample parts for testing and will not support full production.

 

With proper planning and mold design, a custom mold maker will design and manufacture a production mold that will meet all product specifications and geometric dimensions.  Some of these dimensions must be met with the tightest of tolerances as close as .001”, or about the width of a human hair.  Carving out the cavities of a steel mold to produce a plastic part within these tight tolerances is no easy task, especially when taking into consideration the properties of the thermoplastic resin including cooling and shrink rate, which can have a great effect on the final dimensions of the part after solidifying.  

 

If a change is required of a production mold, skilled mold makers can perform what is called an “engineering change” to alter a dimension or tolerance within a part.  If the change is feasible just by altering some dimensions in the steel, mold makers can simply adjust some dimensions in the current tool and avoid the need of constructing a new mold altogether.  

 

Skilled and experienced mold makers will utilize advanced quality product planning procedures to ensure that the constructed production mold will produce parts to spec the first time, planning ahead for critical fill areas and ensuring parts to print.  

 

Michiana Global Mold is an experienced full-service tool and die shop, constructing high performing injection molds with quality steel.  We are an ISO registered mold making facility, applying our strict quality policies in all processes.  Contact us today for a FREE design consultation and to see how we can assist with your next injection mold production requirements.  

Globally Sourced Injection Molds with Domestic Support

 

Are you looking for an injection mold supplier that can provide globally sourced injection molds, at a competitive price, and still provide domestic support?  Look no further!  Michiana Global Mold is located in the heart of the Midwest, employing skilled journeyman moldmakers and technical design engineers providing quality precision tools since 1952.

We also have a facility in China, Modular Mold, offering full service injection mold design and construction.  Modular Mold in China is ISO Registered, as well as our domestic location in Indiana.  With Modular Mold in our China location, we have the ability to provide you with fully finished or semi-finished molds, with the same technical expertise, attention to detail and precision that you will find from our location in the United States.  

When you need overseas pricing on injection molds, with domestic service and support, you need a supplier like Michiana Global Mold.  We manage your project from our Indiana location, providing you with one main point of contact to assist you the entire way throughout the scope of your project.  All tools are inspected and tested for 100% accurate precision dimensions and conformance to your requirements, prior to shipment.

Modular Mold is over 40,000 square feet, with capabilities to produce molds to accommodate presses up to 3,000 tons.  By following our quality policy and adhering to all requirements of ISO9001:2008, we focus on quality, precision, and lead times.  

If you need a quality constructed tool with tight geometric tolerances used for precision injection molding applications, you need to call on Michiana Global Mold!  We are your one stop shop for quality injection molds whether you need domestic or overseas suppliers, we provide top notch customer support.  You will never experience problems due to a language barrier as we handle all communication and make regular visits to our China location.

Let us show you how you can save up to 40% on your injection molded products by using our experience and resources for your next injection mold construction needs. For more information on our China location, see our recent blog “Domestic Service with Benefits of Mold Makers in China”.

Michiana Global Mold is a supplier of superior quality plastic injection molds for various industries including automotive, medical, consumer electronics, and defense for over 50 years.   We maintain high customer satisfaction through continual product and process improvement at both our United States and China locations.   

Injection Molds for Various Thermoplastic Resins

 

Thermoplastic resin is the most common type of polymer used in the injection molding process. There are several different types of thermoplastic resins with varying properties, including shrink rate, resistance to high temperatures, resistance to corrosives, elasticity, adhesion, finish such as polished or matte, and fatigue strength.  

These are all very important considerations when designing an injection mold to manufacture parts molded from thermoplastic resins.  Shrink rate is extremely important, as the cavities in the tool would have to be adjusted for such shrink rate.  Cooling rate is also very important to consider during mold design, and is important for ejection.  The part must be completely set and solid prior to ejecting from the mold.

When designing a tool for injection molding with thermoplastic resin, mold flow analysis may be helpful or even necessary to identify any critical areas in the part design.  Mold flow analysis is a computer aided simulation that shows clearly how the material will flow, based on its own individual properties.

By predicting these critical areas ahead of time, the mold designer can adjust for tight tolerances, problem areas for material flow and fill, and to identify the optimum location for gating.  This is a valuable tool when designing precision molds for critical components, and is a useful tool to avoid costly mistakes and improving lead times.

While mold flow analysis can be a valuable tool, the best knowledge of how particular thermoplastic resins flow comes from experience.  Experienced mold designers are well aware of the specific properties of different polymers, using that knowledge to design the tool properly to mold the part to print.  

Michiana Global Mold has more than 500 years of combined experience designing and building injection molds for various industries.  We utilize advanced technology combined with skilled journeyman moldmakers and vast resources to construct quality tools for injection molding of thermoplastic resins.  

Contact Michiana Global Mold today to speak with one of our skilled and experienced mold designers to learn how we can assist you with your injection mold requirement.  We are an ISO9001:2015 Registered mold making company with vast experience constructing custom, precision injection molds for various industries.

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.  

 

Top 5 Benefits of ISO Certification

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An Overview of the Benefits of ISO9001

 There are many benefits of ISO certification, a globally recognized and accepted set of quality standards applicable to companies in various industries.   Conforming to ISO9001:2015 provides many benefits to manufacturers in all industries including plastic and steel production for automotive, consumer electronics and military and defense.

Businesses that provide design work such as injection mold makers have additional standards and responsibility to their customers, and the supply chain to which they contribute.  Producing quality product, on time, and within customer specifications is key to providing exemplary customer service.   ISO standards prompt companies to detail and audit all systems in their business, implementing corrective actions when those processes are not meeting their goals, applied to all processes, not just manufacturing.

Conforming to ISO standards also means that you have a written plan, detailing needed resources and expected goals for all business processes including business strategy and planning, sales and marketing, production, quality, and customer service.  ISO 9001:2015 puts added emphasis on risk management and leadership engagement, all necessary components of successful, globally competitive businesses.

Here are the Top 5 Benefits of ISO Certification

  1. All Processes are Identified, and Audited for Effectiveness

Processes includes the required resources needed to attain a specified goal.  Each process has an owner, a person responsible for successfully attaining specified goals.   The process owner determines the best way to measure the effectiveness of a process, and implements corrective actions when necessary.

  1. Contributes to Goal-Oriented Teamwork

Process owners must utilize human capital as a resource, creating one goal-oriented team.  Each team member should be aware of the company’s quality policy, and know how their role in the organization contributes to the overall business goals.

  1. Improved Efficiency Produces Improved Profits

Improving efficiency always equates to an improved bottom line.  Time is money, and continual improvement projects like Value Stream Mapping can improve efficiencies and profits for any business process.

  1. Utilizes Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) business improvement process.  
  • Plan – Establish your objectives and a plan to achieve them
  • Do – Execute your plan with a structured framework
  • Check – Audit results against your objectives
  • Act – Make corrections and improvements.

The PDCA system Can be applied to any process and is utilized throughout the entire ISO process.

  1. ISO Certification Focuses on One End Result – Total Customer Satisfaction

Conformance to each and every standard ultimately leads back to total customer satisfaction.  Why does a business do what they do?  Customer Satisfaction is required for any business to survive, let alone thrive and grow.  With focus always on customer satisfaction, one of the major benefits of ISO Certification is that the business has the framework to keep current customers delighted and grow with referrals by providing continued exceptional customer service.

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