Next Friday, October 6th is National Manufacturing Day. As a U.S. manufacturer, we are proud to be participating in this annual event for the sixth time and excited to open our doors to students and educators from local technical schools and colleges.
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As plastic injection molding methods continue to advance and evolve, allowing for enhanced flexibility and more sophisticated customization options, molding companies must be able to stay ahead of the curve in order to offer clients the latest technologies and highest-quality end products.
As an American manufacturer and a family-owned business, we are always looking for ways to support the future of not only our company but other American manufacturers. We know the impact of STEM education on today's youth and often provide tours for high school and college students that are interested in careers in STEM related fields. And on Manufacturing Day, we bring students in with their educators to discuss the opportunities available and give them a close up look at what it's like to work for a highly automated manufacturer.
The success and precision of a part depends on the quality of its mold, but building a reliable, long-lasting tool can take a considerable amount of time — and requires a great deal of accuracy. Also, molds are often one the largest capital investments in a project, so it’s critical that tooling is built right the first time around. This is particularly important in high-volume injection molding projects, where molds can be extremely complex.
With the use of injection molding presses and high-performance resins, plastic injection molders are able to craft a broad range of quality custom parts. Just as all resins are unique, these sophisticated machines offer varied capabilities and performance options depending on press size and type.
While plastic injection molding may not be rocket science, it is still a very complex manufacturing process. It involves great attention to detail and there are many factors to take into consideration.
First, the part design must be developed and maximized for manufacturability. Then a mold must be built. This involves computerized as well as hand tooling. The mold must then be tested along with resin and color options to determine the best formulation for the project.
With patient lives and staff safety at stake, the medical and pharmaceutical industries require adherence to strict safety and quality standards. Medical and pharmaceutical parts must be able to meet stringent quality and traceability standards, and all steps of the manufacturing process must be carefully monitored. In these sensitive industries, liability is essential.
To ensure consumer health and safety, the food and beverage industry must adhere to stringent specifications— requiring nontoxic parts, BPA-free components, and FDA certification. For plastic injection molding in these food service applications, various food grade materials must be used.
How often do you source a plastic injection molder? If you are like most companies and purchasing managers, probably not very often. Typically, once you have selected an injection molder to work with, you are likely to stay with them for a long time as long as they keep producing quality plastic parts.