You should never rush the process of creating an injection mold. Design issues can become costly and keep you from getting your product out on time.
Flow lines, flash, warping, and other defects limit the quality of your finished product and may force you to redesign the mold.
If you are making a professional power tool or a standalone product, working with a dependable mold company should help produce reliable results. Unfortunately, mistakes can happen with any project.
Here are five of the most common injection mold design mistakes and problems.
1. Flow Lines on the Plastic Parts
Flow lines are common issues for poorly designed molds from plastic injection mold manufacturers. Variations in the speed of the molten plastic as it flows through the mold tend to result in streaks, lines, or patterns on the surface.
The lines or streaks create an unattractive, unprofessional appearance. If the manufacturer injects the mold too slowly, flow lines may appear.
Mold manufacturers should also ensure that the injection speed and pressure are set to the maximum level based on the size of the mold and the type of plastic.
Uniform wall thickness throughout the part also helps eliminate flow lines. In areas where the thickness changes, use rounded corners or gradual changes. Removing straight edges in the design allows the molten material to flow freely.
2. Flash Along the Outer Edges
Flash appears when molten material escapes the mold. After the plastic cools, small lines or bumps may remain on the outer edges of the completed product.
To prevent flash, ensure that the two halves of the mold remain securely shut during the injection molding process. The mould maker you choose should use more clamp pressure and thoroughly clean the mold.
If debris or oil prevents a solid seal, it becomes easier for the mold to escape during the injection shot.
Using the optimal pressure, injection speed, temperature, and venting should also help a mould maker reduce the risk of flash.
3. Surface Delamination and Defects
Besides causing flash, debris or oil may cause surface delamination or other defects on the outer edges of the completed product.
Contamination is a common issue. Over time, the molds may become contaminated with a variety of substances including rust, oil, and grease. If the injection mould manufacturers do not properly clean the mold and equipment, the debris stays on the mold, causing various defects.
Surface delamination is an issue where very thin layers appear along the surface of the part due to contamination. The layers often peel off but may leave holes, dents, or pockmarks on the surface.
Thorough cleaning and maintenance are the best solutions for preventing these defects. Increasing the mold temperature may also allow a mold maker to reduce the risk of delamination.
4. Low-Quality Molds or Materials
To reduce costs, some injection mold suppliers may choose to use lower-quality molds or materials. With an inferior mold, you increase the risk of the issues discussed.
For example, a less-expensive mold may not include the design elements needed to prevent flow lines or flash. However, inexpensive molds can also help companies meet the demands of a fast-moving market.
Besides the mold itself, the selection of materials from a mold maker impacts the overall quality of the finished product. Inferior materials and non-uniform wall thicknesses may also result in warpage.
A warped product has deformations such as uneven or bent shapes. Warping may also occur when the mold manufacturer does not allow the mold material to cool evenly or speeds the cooling process.
Work with mold suppliers to review your available options. Select a material that meets the needs of your budget and the design of your product or tool.
To find the right balance of quality and affordability, always use trusted plastic injection mold manufacturers.
5. Not Communicating Properly
A lack of communication is a major obstacle when trying to create a quality injection mold design. Injection mold manufacturers need to communicate well with their clients. At the same time, businesses need to ensure that the mold manufacturers understand the needs of their project.
Proper communication helps businesses and tools manufacturers avoid design errors. Going back to fix issues becomes costly and results in a delay to the project.
To avoid these mistakes, work with a reliable tool maker. HONGYI JIG Rapid Technologies has experience with every stage of the project lifecycle from design to manufacturing. Receive the benefits of working with a skilled injection mold company, including time-saving guarantees and free engineering support.