Happy holidays! Its hard to believe that 2016 is coming to end. We've had a busy, exciting year creating content with the goal of helping individuals and companies become better informed about plastic injection molding and U.S. manufacturing. With more than 50 articles in 2016, we covered a lot of territory.
Below we highlight our favorite articles as well as those that got the greatest response from our readers. We hope you find these helpful, informational and (somewhat) entertaining. As we look towards 2017, if there are topics or issues you'd like us to cover, please let us know by using our comments section below. We always enjoy hearing from our readers!
1. Top Trends for Plastics Manufacturing in 2016 and Beyond
The rapid evolution of the plastics industry will continue throughout 2017. With advances in polymers and additives and the adoption of Manufacturing IoT, the New Year is trending to be a great one. Here we have outlined five key trends that we think will have significant impacts not only on the plastics industry but the world of manufacturing.
2. Injection Molding 101: Cold Runner vs. Hot Runner Molds
Every plastic part starts in a mold. Injection molds are classified into two main types, cold runner and hot runner. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. Your plastic injection molder will be able to give you the costs and benefits of using these different systems. However, by understanding the key differences of these technologies, you can have a more educated discussion on the type of mold that would best fit your project.
3. Top 3 Predictions for the Future of Robotics
In a recent article from American Express Open Forum, Michael Araten spoke about what it’s like to hire a robot, in particular, Baxter, a collaborative robot from Rethink Robotics. We've had Baxter at our facility for almost 3 years and were one of the first plastic injection molding companies in the U.S. to use him. The article states “employing a mix of human and robotic employees could become a more mainstream staffing strategy among businesses in the near future.”Robots such as Baxter can also help companies save money and increase productivity. At Rodon, robotics and automation have given us a competitive edge, especially against overseas manufacturers.
4. Top 12 Manufacturing and Plastic Industry Blogs to Follow
There is an enormous amount of content out there for us to read every day. Figuring out which of it is worthwhile of your time isn't an easy task. If you are looking to stay up-to-date, blogs are rich with helpful, educational and useful information and tips. We hope you enjoy reading our blog and that we can help keep you informed on the topics of plastic injection molding, manufacturing and STEM careers.
5. Top 5 Most Common Plastic Resins for Injection Molding
The job of a plastic injection molder involves helping the client select the best available plastic material given the application. The selection and availability of various polymers has exploded over the past 30 years. Today, it can be overwhelming to figure out what the best plastic material is for your project.
6. Plastic Injection Molding 101 - Choosing the Best Resin Materials
The number of polymer compounds has grown over the past 20 years. As a result, plastics are being used in more applications than ever before. These materials are gaining a reputation for strength and endurance. Combine these improvements with the advantages of corrosion resistance and aesthetic appeal and plastics are taking center stage in the manufacturing of many consumer and industrial components. Due to their versatility, strength and light weight characteristics, plastics are also taking a larger role in the transportation, medical and construction industries.
7. 6 Common Injection Molding Defects and How to Avoid Them
When working with any manufacturing process, a number of defects unique to that process commonly occur. This is true across many processes and industries, including injection molding and high volume injection molding. As we have previously discussed on this blog, there are several common injecting molding defects; however, an injection molder who is vigilant about quality, like our team at The Rodon Group, will be able to manage these injection molding defects, minimizing or eliminating them all together. These six most common plastic part defects can all be traced to one of three sources: the resin or additives used, the injection molding process, or the mold itself.
8. Injection Molding vs. 3D Printing
Earlier last year, we discussed 3D printing. Though it has been around for quite a while, the new printing technique has only been a player in the public consciousness for about five years. In that time, the public’s perception of what 3D printing can do has eclipsed the process’ actual capabilities. And with more recognition come more inquiries — everybody wants to explore 3D printing as an option for their next project, and are eager to want to move on from more traditional methods, such as injection molding.
9. 10 Must-Ask Questions for Choosing a Plastic Injection Molder
How often do you source an injection molder? If you are like most companies and project managers, not very often. Once you have selected an injection molder to work with you are likely to stay with them as long as they keep producing quality plastic parts. There are several scenarios in which the need for an injection molder may arise. If you are in the market, how do you insure you have selected the best plastic injection molder for the job? Our latest, newly updated guide can help.
10. A Brief History of the American Manufacturing Industry + Infographic
In today's post, we feature a great infographic below from a joint report by Deloitte Manufacturing and the Manufacturing Institute. Before featuring this information so that manufacturers understand how the public views them, let's first go through a brief history of the American Manufacturing Industry by highlighting some moments & inventions that changed the way of life as we know it.