Injection mold designs are like the old saying, “there is more than one way to peel an orange.” (I know, the original saying had to do with something to a cat but it is gross and has outlived its time.)
Truth is, there are multiple ways to design a mold that will make a specific component. Based upon the component’s design, shapes and features, a mold can be accomplished in different ways. Typically, a part designer will turn his CAD files over to a mold designer. That mold designer will work out the problem and return a mold design that makes that part. There is not a lot of back and forth on how the mold is designed, the final determinant is, does the molded part meet the print? Hopefully, the component’s annual and life volumes have been considered, any intricacies like insert molding or overmolding. But in the end, the designer has his part(s).
At PlastiCert, there is much more to the process than that. As we specialize in low to medium volume parts, and we have a mold design and build shop in house, we can take that “many ways to peel and orange” axiom and run with it. We will inquire as to not just volumes, inserts, over mold requirements, but features, their function, and their necessity to be made in the mold. In the low volume world, sometimes it may not make sense to add tens of thousands of dollars to a mold cost to add a specific feature when that feature could be made through a post molding secondary operation. Or possibly an insert pressed in though ultrasonic welding or heat staking.
We have designed and made prototype molds that we intended to just bear out a concept, and it was so good ended up running it in production. We have routinely insert molded some inserts, but left others, more difficult to accommodate, to be post molding ultrasonically welded, because the volume of the component justified it.
Working with an injection molder that does low and medium volume routinely and ALSO has mold design and build shop internally offers up a myriad of options. When you are looking to prove out a design, or when the end volumes are low but molding is the best option, when you want to lessen capital equipment cost until later in the product lifecycle, then you should be talking to PlastiCert.