Injection molding is a manufacturing process that requires a mold to form the final output. We need the right type of mold for varied different purposes. It impacts the production speed, product quality and also affects the overall costs. The cost of mold will depend on its complexity. The stronger a mold is, the more complexity and the price. We are the leading injection molding manufacturers in India that offer high-quality injection mold machines with accurate precision. The molds are classified under different categories. It is differentiated primarily on its features like plate amount, runner system and part capacity. If you want a mold that has three plates in a cold runner system and with multiple cavities, for which a particular type of mold is used. The leading plastic mold manufacturer recommends you get to know the different categories of molds which will help you pick the right kind of mold to manufacture the part.
In India, we have three primary categories of injection mold, namely, runner, plate and volume. The first category of molds is the type of runner system we use to manufacture the part. A runner system is a part of machinery with channels, spruce, gate and runners, which directs melted plastic from the nozzle to the molds cavity. The two different types of runners are hot runners and cold runners. Hot runners will have a heating element to heat the system either externally or internally. The heating element can be a rod or a coil.Also Read: Get Equipped with Injection Moulding
The runner system must be heated while the mold is cold to set the part. In this type of runner, the system is set within a manifold plate. The runners are fixed permanently on the plate. The molded plastic comes out clean without any waste. It reduces waste, and there is no extra step in the production process. This type of runner system is used for high volume production that requires multiple mold cavities. It is an expensive process as we need to heat the system. Since the runner system is fitted within, it is tough to identify issues or even clean, making maintenance a challenging process. A cold runner system does not require heating, but the system is exposed and cut into the mold. Here the new runner is created, solidified, and ejected in each mold cycle.
The runner system is conjoined or separated with the molded part depending on the number of plates. There is no waste created, and the part can be recycled and reused. But, it has a lengthy production process as there are additional steps required to make the runner system. Cold runner systems are easier to clean and maintain. Another category of mold is the number of plates. A mold is sorted by the number of plates that will have a negative cut. The plates help form an entire mold cavity which will aid in the proper production of the part. We use three plates, two plates and stacked plates. A two-plate mold is most commonly used for injection molding. It is also the least expensive. For a part with two parting lines, we need to use a three-plate mold. The last category is by volume. The number of cavities decade the number of molds produced in each cycle. There are single, multiple and family cavity moulds. A single cavity will manufacture a single part, whereas multiple cavities will make multiple identical parts. A family mold is used to produce multiple different parts per cycle.
Another type of mold gaining prominence in India is the 3D printed molds. A traditional plastic injection molding tooling will take weeks, and this will delay the whole back production. Using a 3D printed mold to bridge the tooling will reduce the production time. While you are waiting for the moulding tool to cut, use the 3D printed molds to make molds within 48 hours. A printed mold can handle only around 100 mold cycles, and it is costly.