Most OEMs requiring parts made from a mold simply contact their molding service provider and place an order. However, what the OEM may not realize is the number of steps and processes that are involved for the supplier to complete a custom plastic molding order.
There will be a range of different options for most types of plastic molding. Each process requires a different plan for the company that allows the creation of the exact shape, size, and type of final product. The most common types of molding for large volume orders of plastics include injection, blow, and extrusion molding. There is also a process known as thermoforming, which is used for rigid types of final products such as disposable cups or even clamshell types of containers.
What to Consider
The company that is completing the custom plastic molding will have their engineering team review any and all CAD drawings, files or other documents that are supplied by the OEM.
At this point, the engineers may make recommendations or provide guidance in selecting the ideal plastic molding method as well as the correct molding plastic to consider. In many cases, this process may also involve any design changes that may make the molding process more efficient, which will lower the cost to the OEM per unit produced.
Once the OEM and the engineering team have a final agreed upon design, the development of the specific custom plastic molding process will be developed. This could include designing a die if extrusion is the process selected or it may be in creating a mold if injection molding is the best option.
The company will then test and verify all production methods and begin production. Top companies will use continual quality control processes and testing to ensure each part produced meets the OEM and all industry standards.
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