Although metal-to-plastic conversion was introduced in the 1950s, with the invention of engineering-grade resins, many manufacturers today are unfamiliar with the advantages of this versatile technique.
As various advanced, cost-efficient plastics are being developed in today’s shifting landscape, many industries are realizing the benefits of replacing metal parts with injection-molded plastic. In fact, most companies can expect metal-to-plastic conversion to result in cost savings of 25-50%.
With high strength, consistent reliability, and the ability to be manufactured to the same tight tolerances as metal, plastic parts can offer numerous benefits to companies across all types of industries.
The Advantages of Plastic over Metal
As many industries become increasingly aware of the benefits of metal-to-plastic conversion, high-volume injection molding is quickly becoming the method of choice for part manufacture.
Plastic parts offer several universal benefits over metal, including:
- Can have higher tensile strength vs. many types of metal
- Reduced part weight
- Reduced manufacturing costs
- Superior design flexibility
- Reduced waste
- Faster manufacturing times
- Easy adherence to various regulatory compliances
- Lower packaging and shipping costs
- Up to six times longer life
- Increased corrosion resistance
- Repeatable, predictable manufacture
Besides reducing weight and improving overall part strength and corrosion resistance, plastic-to-metal conversion also allows for the consolidation of multiple metal parts into a single plastic part. And aside from offering equal toughness and allowing for the same tight tolerances as metal, plastic parts require fewer secondary operations, thereby saving on time and costs.
With specialized design techniques, plastic parts can actually be made to have higher-quality physical and chemical properties than metal.
Using Plastic Parts to Cut Costs
As mentioned, plastic-to-metal conversion can result in savings of 25-50%. This is due to several factors: the ability to replace multiple metal parts with one plastic part and the subsequent elimination of fastener and assembly needs, as well as the ability to add colors to plastic melts and the resultant elimination of painting or laser marking processes.
Besides saving on costs, however, using plastic can significantly improve the quality of parts. Plastic can optimize part quality in several ways, including through:
- Ability to reuse plastic materials
- Extended product life
- More diverse design options
- Elimination of time-consuming, costly secondary processes
- Greater product structural strength
- Lighter weight and improved ease of use
As an industry-leading, ISO 9001: 2008-certified manufacturer, The Rodon Group is proud to offer large-volume injection molding services for a wide range of industries.
To learn more about the benefits of plastic-to-metal conversion and the key factors that impact part quality, download our free eBook, How to Manufacture a Perfect Plastic Part.