Tag Archives: plastic injection mold

How is a Shuttle Mold Used?

 

 

A Shuttle mold is a mold system with one A side, and multiple B sides.  This is used in a vertical clamping press, as opposed to a horizontal clamping press.  A vertical clamping press is used for over molding, also referred to as insert molding.

 

Insert molding occurs when plastic is molded around an object such as a metal or even another plastic insert.  A shuttle mold system is used on a rotary table press so that there are two, three or sometimes four bottom sides, rotating around on the table allowing an operator or a robot to place the insert into the cavity in the mold.  When the bottom side spins around, the top half of the mold will come down vertically clamping onto the B side to mold plastic around the insert.  

 

This system can be labor intensive requiring an operator to load inserts, and unload molded product, unless the job is set up with automatic robots for this purpose.  This is different than most horizontal molding processes in which the there is one A and B side of the mold, sliding on a horizontal plane, coming together for the injection molding process, then the parts are automatically ejected with an ejector system falling into a desired location, usually a bin or box underneath the mold.  

 

Most horizontal injection molding jobs are fully automatic once the mold is set in the press, some can even run in a lights-out situation if automated auxiliary equipment is established.  A vertical molding press with a shuttle mold system typically employs an operator, although they can also be automated.  

 

Some examples of insert molding would be electrical wire harnesses that are partially encased in plastic, or even knives or silverware that have plastic molded around a metal object.   Shuttle molds are used in plastic injection molding for various industries including Electronics, Consumer Goods, Automotive, Aerospace and Military / Defense industries.  

Michiana Global Mold has experience constructing precision shuttle molds, and virtually any other type of plastic injection mold base used in various industries.  We are a valuable supplier to the Automotive industry with complex tools meeting tight geometrical dimensional specifications.  Contact Michiana Global Mold today, and ISO9001:2015 Registered mold maker.  

 

Expert Injection Molds from Concept to Completion

 

Choosing the right injection mold supplier for your project is an important decision.  Every injection molding project begins with a quality constructed injection mold.  You need to choose a supplier that can handle your project, no matter the complexity or precision tooling required.  

At Michiana Global Mold, we are experienced in constructing quality precision molds, taking into account all necessary design considerations from the beginning resulting in a perfect mold for your application.  Michiana Global Mold employs expert mold designers, utilizing the latest in technological advancements with CAD/CAM (Computer Aided Design / Computer Aided Manufacturing) Software.   Download our FREE Book on Design Considerations for Various Molds.  

Michiana Global Mold will partner with your business from the beginning, providing you with options that will give you the best value for your mold construction project.  We use CAD/CAM along with mold flow analysis when necessary, to pinpoint any critical dimensions before cutting steel.  

We have full in-house design capabilities with expert experience in all facets of design construction and machining.  We can construct fully functional molds, mold inserts, over molds for insert molding, mold compositions, and adaptations including engineering changes.  

We have the skill and experience to produce best in class automotive injection molds, satisfying even the most stringent of quality requirements.   As an ISO Registered tool shop, we are familiar with following documented guidelines, providing excellent workmanship to meet precision tolerances.  We will identify problem areas before they would become a problem.

Our staff includes journeyman moldmakers that have vast experience with tool construction for a wide array of industries.  We have the knowledge required to provide precise, technical tools for various applications including those required in the automotive industry, consumer electronics, medical, and military / ordnance requirements.  

Contact Michiana Global Mold today to learn how our vast experience, knowledge, and technical capabilities will add value to your supply chain.  We partner with our customers from the beginning, providing quality, precision molds for a wide array of applications over various industries.  Michiana Global Mold is an ISO Registered injection mold construction supplier, providing quality class A steel molds since 1952.  

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.

Precision Injection Molds for Electronic Components

 

Constructing an injection mold for small electronic parts requires skill and experience, coupled with quality tools and equipment.  Plastic injection molding of electronic components can be tricky with thin walls in tight spaces and intricate critical dimensions.  

Custom electronic parts are molded out of various materials including thermoplastic elastomers (TPE), polycarbonates (PC), polypropylene (PP), and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS).  When constructing the mold to make these types of parts and components, you need an experienced mold maker that knows the properties of the various types of polymers and how they will flow in your mold.  We have the ability to provide mold-flow analysis, identifying any critical geometrical areas prior to cutting steel.  

Michiana Global Mold has the skill and the experience to provide a class A quality tool on time and within your budget.  We specialize in highly complicated electronic part molds requiring a high level of skill and precision.  Since precision, custom molds are our specialty, we can provide to you the most value for your investment.  We understand the importance quality, timely mold production, to ensure that your project is up and running with quality parts and components when you need them.  

Our skilled moldmakers have been supplying quality tools for electronics parts and components for over 50 years, satisfying stringent quality requirements for various industries including Automotive, Consumer Electronics, and other various industries requiring precision electrical housings and electro-mechanical switches.

Michiana Global Mold utilizes the latest technology with our CAD/CAM software and integration with our milling machines.  Our highly skilled staff is comprised of a very experienced cross-functional team, providing exemplary service to each and every customer.

Total Customer Satisfaction is our main goal.  As an ISO9001:2015 Registered mold making company, we will add value to your supply chain with adherence to our Quality Policy, providing best in class quality tools, on time and in spec.  

Michiana Global Mold has the experience and the skilled staff to provide a quality tool, on time, and to your specification even in tight tolerance, critical areas.  Contact us today to learn how we can work together to produce custom, precision electronic parts and components.

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.  

 

Cost Saving Options for Prototype Tools

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The Value of a Prototype Mold

Constructing a prototype mold for testing purposes can save you money by perfecting your part design prior to building a production injection mold.    A prototype mold is the only type of mold that can be constructed of aluminum because is not intended for supporting any long term production requirements.  A prototype mold is a good way for an engineer to see exactly how their new part will function in a real-life scenario, without the expenditure for a standard steel production mold.   A prototype mold can cost considerably less than a Standard Mold, in some cases thousands or tens of thousands of dollars, while providing the benefit of developing your product to perform exactly as intended.

Some other economical options for injection mold construction would be a MUD Unit, or what one if the project is certain but tiny details are still in question, you may want to build a standard mold with a prototype cavity, develop only one of a multi-cavity tool to perfect the part before constructing the remaining cavities.

Versatility of MUD Units

A MUD (Master Unit Die) Unit refers to a universal steel frame that fits into a press, allowing for an insert mold to slide in or out for quick changeovers.   A MUD unit frame is extremely valuable for production runs that require just in time delivery, when the volume requirements do not dictate a standard mold expenditure.  The ability to quickly switch out insert molds reduces machine down time and labor costs.   Some molders prefer to use MUD units on jobs that run in the same material, allowing for smooth set up and production runs.   This is an economical option that many molders can offer to their customers.

Standard Injection Molds

A typical standard injection mold is used in a horizontal clamping press, with two halves, an A & B side, that move together to form the desired production part(s) inside the closed mold.  A standard mold will have either one or multiple cavities, the carved out area with specific precision geometrical shapes prepared to mold the desired part.  In some cases, an engineer may be certain of needing an 8-cavity standard mold for high volume part production, but may want to perfect the design prior to constructing all cavities.

Michiana Global Mold has vast experience constructing prototype tools, insert tools for MUD units, and prototype cavities in multi-cavity tools.  Michiana Global Mold has been a superior supplier of high quality plastic injection molds for various industries including automotive, consumer electronics, medical and defense, for over 50 years.    We are an ISO9001:2015 Registered mold builder, maintaining high customer satisfaction through continual product and process improvement.

 

 

Plastic Injection Mold Designs Requiring Cam Action and Lifters

Engineers have many factors to consider when it comes to plastic injection mold designs, including cam action and the ejection system.    Once a mold designer has evaluated all geometric tolerances on the part print, they will typically create a CAD (Computer Aided Design) drawing of the part to aid in the design of the tool.  While reviewing part requirements and the tooling necessary to mold the part, it will become apparent if any Cam Action, or specialized ejection system is necessary.

What is Cam Action

Cam action refers to the mechanics necessary to create an undercut feature, a hole in a part would be an example.   Cam action occurs on sliding plates that would slide in when the plastic is molding around it to create the feature such as a hole, then it must slide back out in order for the part to eject properly.  If the pins or mechanics that molded the feature like a hole did not slide out of the way, the part would be lodged on that pin and would not fall out.  A cam device will pull the side-action mold surface out of the way to allow ejection from the mold.

cam-action-1-minPictured is an example of cam action; the sliding plates have barrel like rods attached to move in during the molding process creating holes in the part.  They slide back out when finished for proper ejection.

cam-action-2-minThis photo shows cams in a closed position, while molding the hollow geometrical shape of the part.

Lifters and the Ejection System

The ejection system is what pushes the part out of the mold after a fully formed plastic part has been molded.  In some instances, some help might be required for proper ejection.  This is where lifters would be included as a mechanism in the ejector system.  A lifter is an angled feature that is part of the ejector plate system, and is activated upon ejection.

The ejection system has several considerations during the injection mold design.  The ejection pattern and stroke of the press must correspond with the mold design.  Proper location of ejection pics is crucial to properly eject the mold without damaging the finished part.  In some instances, lifters are the only option to ensure proper ejection.

lifter-example-iso-view-cut-away-1An example of lifters assisting with ejection

 

Michiana Global Mold is an ISO9001:2015 Registered injection mold designing and building company.  We have been supplying custom precision injection molds to various industries including automotive, medical, electronics and defense for over 52 years.  Contact us today to see how we can assist you with your plastic injection mold designs.