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A BRIEF STUDY ON PLASTIC INJECTION MOLDING

PROCESS

ABSTRACT:

Injection molded components are consistently designed to minimize the design and
manufacturing information content of the enterprise system. The resulting designs, however, are
extremely complex and frequently exhibit coupling between multiple qualities attributes.
Axiomatic design principles were applied to the injection molding process to add control
parameters that enable the spatial and dynamic decoupling of multiple quality attributes in the
molded part. There are three major benefits of the process redesign effort. First, closed loop
pressure control has enabled tight coupling between the mass and momentum equations. This
tight coupling allows the direct input and controllability of the melt pressure. Second, the use of
multiple melt actuators provides for the decoupling of melt pressures between different locations
in the mold cavity. Such decoupling can then be used to maintain functional independence of
multiple qualities attributes. Third, the heat equation has been decoupled from the mass and
momentum equations. This allows the mold to be filled under isothermal conditions. Once the
cavities are completely full and attain the desired packing pressure, then the cooling is allowed to
progress.

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CHAPTER-01

HMT Series
HMT 160T
HMT 220T
HMT 300T
HMT 300T (S)
HMT 360T
HMT 360T (S)

HMT Pet Series


HMT 160T
HMT 220T
HMT 360T

HMT RPVC & CPVC Series


HMT 160T
HMT 220T
HMT 300T
HMT 360T

HMS Series
HMS 440T
HMS 660T
HMS 880T
HMS 880T (K)

1.0 INTRODUCTION:
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Injection molding is the most commonly used manufacturing process for the fabrication of
plastic parts. A wide variety of products are manufactured using injection molding, which vary
greatly in their size, complexity, and application. The injection molding process requires the use
of an injection molding machine, raw plastic material, and a mold. The plastic is melted in the
injection molding machine and then injected into the mold, where it cools and solidifies into the
final part. The steps in this process are described in greater detail in the next section.

Fig. 1.1 Injection molding overview


Injection molding is used to produce thin-walled plastic parts for a wide variety of applications,
one of the most common being plastic housings. Plastic housing is a thin-walled enclosure, often
requiring many ribs and bosses on the interior. These housings are used in a variety of products
including household appliances, consumer electronics, power tools, and as automotive
dashboards. Other common thin-walled products include different types of open containers, such
as buckets. Injection molding is also used to produce several everyday items such as
toothbrushes or small plastic toys. Many medical devices, including valves and syringes, are
manufactured using injection molding as well.

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1.1 INJECTION MOLDING-OVERVIEW:


Injection molding is a

manufacturing process for producing parts from both

thermoplastic and thermosetting plastic materials. Material is fed into a heated barrel, mixed,
and forced into a mold cavity where it cools and hardens to the configuration of the mold cavity.
After a product is designed, usually by an industrial designer or an engineer, molds are made
by a mold maker (or toolmaker) from metal, usually either steel or aluminum, and precisionmachined to form the features of the desired part. Injection molding is widely used for
manufacturing a variety of parts, from the smallest component to entire body panels of cars.

Fig. 1.2 Schematic Diagram of Plastic Injection molding

1.2.

PROCESS CHARACTERISTICS:
Utilizes a ram or screw-type plunger to force molten plastic material into a mold cavity
Produces a solid or open-ended shape which has conformed to the contour of the mold
Uses thermoplastic or thermo set materials
Produces a parting line, sprue, and gate marks
Ejector pin marks are usually present

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1.3 HISTORY& DEVELOPMENT:


The first man-made plastic was invented in Britain in 1851 by Alexander Parkes. He
publicly demonstrated it at the 1862 International Exhibition in London; calling the material he
produced "Parkesine." Derived from cellulose, Parkesine could be heated, molded, and retain its
shape when cooled. It was, however, expensive to produce, prone to cracking, and highly
flammable.
In 1868, American inventor John Wesley Hyatt developed a plastic material he named
Celluloid, improving on Parkes' invention so that it could be processed into finished form.
Together with his brother Isaiah, Hyatt patented the first injection molding machine in 1872.
This machine was relatively simple compared to machines in use today. It worked like a large
hypodermic needle, using a plunger to inject plastic through a heated cylinder into a mold. The
industry progressed slowly over the years, producing products such as collar stays, buttons,
and hair combs.
The industry expanded rapidly in the 1940s because World War II created a huge demand
for inexpensive, mass-produced products. In 1946, American inventor James Watson Hendry
built the first screw injection machine, which allowed much more precise control over the speed
of injection and the quality of articles produced. This machine also allowed material to be mixed
before injection, so that colored or recycled plastic could be added to virgin material and mixed
thoroughly before being injected. Today screw injection machines account for the vast majority
of all injection machines. In the 1970s, Hendry went on to develop the first gas-assisted injection
molding process, which permitted the production of complex, hollow articles that cooled
quickly. This greatly improved design flexibility as well as the strength and finish of
manufactured parts while reducing production time, cost, weight and waste.
The plastic injection molding industry has evolved over the years from producing combs and
buttons to producing a vast array of products for many industries including

automotive,

medical, aerospace, consumer products, toys, plumbing, packaging, and construction.

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CHAPTER-02
2.0 PROCESS CYCLE:
The process cycle for injection molding is very short, typically between 2 seconds and 2 minutes,
and consists of the following four stages:

1. Clamping - Prior to the injection of the material into the mold, the two halves of the mold

must first be securely closed by the clamping unit. Each half of the mold is attached to
the injection molding machine and one half is allowed to slide. The hydraulically
powered clamping unit pushes the mold halves together and exerts sufficient force to
keep the mold securely closed while the material is injected. The time required to close
and clamp the mold is dependent upon the machine - larger machines (those with greater
clamping forces) will require more time. This time can be estimated from the dry cycle
time of the machine.

2. Injection - The raw plastic material, usually in the form of pellets, is fed into the injection

molding machine, and advanced towards the mold by the injection unit. During this
process, the material is melted by heat and pressure. The molten plastic is then injected
into the mold very quickly and the buildup of pressure packs and holds the material. The
amount of material that is injected is referred to as the shot. The injection time is difficult
to calculate accurately due to the complex and changing flow of the molten plastic into
the mold. However, the injection time can be estimated by the shot volume, injection
pressure, and injection power.

3. Cooling - The molten plastic that is inside the mold begins to cool as soon as it makes

contact with the interior mold surfaces. As the plastic cools, it will solidify into the shape
of the desired part. However, during cooling some shrinkage of the part may occur. The
packing of material in the injection stage allows additional material to flow into the mold

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and reduce the amount of visible shrinkage. The mold can not be opened until the
required cooling time has elapsed. The cooling time can be estimated from several
thermodynamic properties of the plastic and the maximum wall thickness of the part.
4. Ejection - After sufficient time has passed, the cooled part may be ejected from the mold

by the ejection system, which is attached to the rear half of the mold. When the mold is
opened, a mechanism is used to push the part out of the mold. Force must be applied to
eject the part because during cooling the part shrinks and adheres to the mold. In order to
facilitate the ejection of the part, a mold release agent can be sprayed onto the surfaces of
the mold cavity prior to injection of the material. The time that is required to open the
mold and eject the part can be estimated from the dry cycle time of the machine and
should include time for the part to fall free of the mold. Once the part is ejected, the mold
can be clamped shut for the next shot to be injected.

Fig.2.1 Injection molded part.


After the injection molding cycle, some post processing is typically required. During cooling, the
material in the channels of the mold will solidify attached to the part. This excess material, along
with any flash that has occurred, must be trimmed from the part, typically by using cutters. For
some types of material, such as thermoplastics, the scrap material that results from this trimming
can be recycled by being placed into a plastic grinder, also called regrind machines or
granulators, which regrinds the scrap material into pellets. Due to some degradation of the

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material properties, the regrind must be mixed with raw material in the proper regrind ratio to be
reused in the injection molding process.

2.1 MACHINERY & EQUIPMENT:


Injection molding machines consist of a material hopper, an injection ram or screw-type
plunger, and a heating unit. They are also known as presses, they hold the molds in which the
components are shaped. Presses are rated by tonnage, which expresses the amount of clamping
force that the machine can exert. This force keeps the mold closed during the injection process.
Tonnage can vary from less than 5 tons to 6000 tons, with the higher figures used in
comparatively few manufacturing operations.
The total clamp force needed is determined by the projected area of the part being
molded. This projected area is multiplied by a clamp force of from 2 to 8 tons for each square
inch of the projected areas. As a rule of thumb, 4 or 5 tons/in2 can be used for most products. If
the plastic material is very stiff, it will require more injection pressure to fill the mold, thus more
clamp tonnage to hold the mold closed. The required force can also be determined by the
material used and the size of the part, larger parts require higher clamping force.

Fig.2.2 Injection Molding Machine.


Injection molding machines have many components and are available in different configurations,
including a horizontal configuration and a vertical configuration. However, regardless of their
design, all injection molding machines utilize a power source, injection unit, mold assembly, and
clamping unit to perform the four stages of the process cycle.

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2.2 POWER REQUIREMENTS:


The power required for this process of injection molding depends on many things and
varies between materials used. Manufacturing Processes Reference Guide states that the power
requirements depend on "a material's specific gravity, melting point, thermal conductivity, part
size, and molding rate." Below is a table from page 243 of the same reference as previously
mentioned which best illustrates the characteristics relevant to the power required for the most
commonly used materials.
Material
Epoxy
Phenolic
Nylon
Polyethylene
Polystyrene

Specific Gravity
1.12 to 1.24
1.34 to 1.95
1.01 to 1.15
0.91 to 0.965
1.04 to 1.07

Melting Point (F)


248
248
381 to 509
230 to 243
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Table 1 Power Requirements.

2.3 INJECTION UNIT:


The injection unit is responsible for both heating and injecting the material into the mold.
The first part of this unit is the hopper, a large container into which the raw plastic is poured. The
hopper has an open bottom, which allows the material to feed into the barrel. The barrel contains
the mechanism for heating and injecting the material into the mold. This mechanism is usually a
ram injector or a reciprocating screw. A ram injector forces the material forward through a
heated section with a ram or plunger that is usually hydraulically powered. Today, the more
common technique is the use of a reciprocating screw. A reciprocating screw moves the material
forward by both rotating and sliding axially, being powered by either a hydraulic or electric
motor.
The material enters the grooves of the screw from the hopper and is advanced towards the
mold as the screw rotates. While it is advanced, the material is melted by pressure, friction, and
additional heaters that surround the reciprocating screw. The molten plastic is then injected very

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quickly into the mold through the nozzle at the end of the barrel by the buildup of pressure and
the forward action of the screw. This increasing pressure allows the material to be packed and
forcibly held in the mold. Once the material has solidified inside the mold, the screw can retract
and fill with more material for the next shot.

Fig.2.3 Injection molding machine - Injection unit.

2.4 CLAMPING UNIT:


Prior to the injection of the molten plastic into the mold, the two halves of the mold must
first be securely closed by the clamping unit. When the mold is attached to the injection molding
machine, each half is fixed to a large plate, called a platen. The front half of the mold, called the
mold cavity, is mounted to a stationary platen and aligns with the nozzle of the injection unit.
The rear half of the mold, called the mold core, is mounted to a movable platen, which slides
along the tie bars. The hydraulically powered clamping motor actuates clamping bars that push
the moveable platen towards the stationary platen and exert sufficient force to keep the mold
securely closed while the material is injected and subsequently cools. After the required cooling
time, the mold is then opened by the clamping motor. An ejection system, which is attached to
the rear half of the mold, is actuated by the ejector bar and pushes the solidified part out of the
open cavity.

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Fig.2.4 Injection molding machine - Clamping unit.

2.5 LUBRICATION AND COOLING:


Obviously, the mold must be cooled in order for the production to take place. Because of
the heat capacity, inexpensiveness, and availability of water, water is used as the primary cooling
agent. To cool the mold, water can be channeled through the mold to account for quick cooling
times. Usually a colder mold is more efficient because this allows for faster cycle times.
However, this is not always true because crystalline materials require the opposite: a warmer
mold and lengthier cycle time.

2.6 MACHINE SPECIFICATIONS:


Injection molding machines are typically characterized by the tonnage of the clamp force
they provide. The required clamp force is determined by the projected area of the parts in the
mold and the pressure with which the material is injected. Therefore, a larger part will require a
larger clamping force. Also, certain materials that require high injection pressures may require
higher tonnage machines. The size of the part must also comply with other machine
specifications, such as shot capacity, clamp stroke, minimum mold thickness, and platen size.

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Injection molded parts can vary greatly in size and therefore require these measures to cover a
very large range. As a result, injection molding machines are designed to each accommodate a
small range of this larger spectrum of values. Sample specifications are shown below for three
different models (Babyplast, Powerline, and Maxima) of injection molding machine that are
manufactured by Cincinnati Milacron.
Babyplast

Powerline

Maxima

Clamp force (ton)

6.6

330

4400

Shot capacity (oz.)

0.13 - 0.50 8 - 34

413 - 1054

Clamp stroke (in.)

4.33

23.6

133.8

Min. mold thickness (in.)

1.18

7.9

31.5

Platen size (in.)

2.95 x 2.95 40.55 x 40.55

Table 2 Machine Specifications.

Fig.2.5 Injection molding machine.

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122.0
106.3

2.7 TOOLING:
The injection molding process uses molds, typically made of steel or aluminum, as the
custom tooling. The mold has many components, but can be split into two halves. Each half is
attached inside the injection molding machine and the rear half is allowed to slide so that the
mold can be opened and closed along the mold's parting line. The two main components of the
mold are the mold core and the mold cavity. When the mold is closed, the space between the
mold core and the mold cavity forms the part cavity, that will be filled with molten plastic to
create the desired part. Multiple-cavity molds are sometimes used, in which the two mold halves
form several identical part cavities.

Fig.2.6 Mold overview.

2.8 MOLD BASE:


The mold core and mold cavity are each mounted to the mold base, which is then fixed to
the platens inside the injection molding machine. The front half of the mold base includes a
support plate, to which the mold cavity is attached, the sprue bushing, into which the material
will flow from the nozzle, and a locating ring, in order to align the mold base with the nozzle.
The rear half of the mold base includes the ejection system, to which the mold core is attached,

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and a support plate. When the clamping unit separates the mold halves, the ejector bar actuates
the ejection system. The ejector bar pushes the ejector plate forward inside the ejector box,
which in turn pushes the ejector pins into the molded part. The ejector pins push the solidified
part out of the open mold cavity.

Fig.2.7 Mold base.

2.9 MOLD CHANNELS:


In order for the molten plastic to flow into the mold cavities, several channels are
integrated into the mold design. First, the molten plastic enters the mold through the sprue.
Additional channels, called runners, carry the molten plastic from the sprue to all of the cavities
that must be filled. At the end of each runner, the molten plastic enters the cavity through a gate
which directs the flow. The molten plastic that solidifies inside these runners is attached to the
part and must be separated after the part has been ejected from the mold. However, sometimes
hot runner systems are used which independently heat the channels, allowing the contained
material to be melted and detached from the part. Another type of channel that is built into the

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mold is cooling channels. These channels allow water to flow through the mold walls, adjacent
to the cavity, and cool the molten plastic.

Fig.2.8 Mold channels.

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CHAPTER-03
3.0 MOLD DESIGN:
In addition to runners and gates, there are many other design issues that must be
considered in the design of the molds. Firstly, the mold must allow the molten plastic to flow
easily into all of the cavities. Equally important is the removal of the solidified part from the
mold, so a draft angle must be applied to the mold walls. The design of the mold must also
accommodate any complex features on the part, such as undercuts or threads, which will require
additional mold pieces. Most of these devices slide into the part cavity through the side of the
mold, and are therefore known as slides, or side-actions. The most common type of side-action is
a side-core which enables an external undercut to be molded. Other devices enter through the end
of the mold along the parting direction, such as internal core lifters, which can form an internal
undercut. To mold threads into the part, an unscrewing device is needed, which can rotate out of
the mold after the threads have been formed.

Fig.3.1 Mold Closed.

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Fig.3.2 Mold - Exploded view.

Fig.3.3 Standard two plates tooling core and cavity are inserts in a mold base "Family mold" of 5 different parts.

The mold consists of two primary components, the injection mold (A plate) and the
ejector mold (B plate). Plastic resin enters the mold through a sprue in the injection mold,
the sprue bushing is to seal tightly against the nozzle of the injection barrel of the molding
machine and to allow molten plastic to flow from the barrel into the mold, also known as
cavity. The sprue bushing directs the molten plastic to the cavity images through channels that
are machined into the faces of the A and B plates. These channels allow plastic to run along
them, so they are

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referred to as runners. The molten plastic flows through the runner and enters one or more
specialized gates and into the cavity geometry to form the desired part.
The amount of resin required to fill the sprue, runner and cavities of a mold is a shot.
Trapped air in the mold can escape through air vents that are ground into the parting line of the
mold. If the trapped air is not allowed to escape, it is compressed by the pressure of the incoming
material and is squeezed into the corners of the cavity, where it prevents filling and causes other
defects as well. The air can become so compressed that it ignites and burns the surrounding
plastic material. To allow for removal of the molded part from the mold, the mold features must
not overhang one another in the direction that the mold opens, unless parts of the mold are
designed to move from between such overhangs when the mold opens (utilizing components
called Lifters).
Sides of the part that appear parallel with the direction of draw (The axis of the cored
position (hole) or insert is parallel to the up and down movement of the mold as it opens and
closes) are typically angled slightly with (draft) to ease release of the part from the mold.
Insufficient draft can cause deformation or damage. The draft required for mold release is
primarily dependent on the depth of the cavity: the deeper the cavity, the more draft necessary.
Shrinkage must also be taken into account when determining the draft required. If the skin is too
thin, then the molded part will tend to shrink onto the cores that form them while cooling, and
cling to those cores or part may warp, twist, blister or crack when the cavity is pulled away.
The mold is usually designed so that the molded part reliably remains on the ejector (B)
side of the mold when it opens, and draws the runner and the sprue out of the (A) side along with
the parts. The part then falls freely when ejected from the (B) side. Tunnel gates, also known as
submarine or mold gate, is located below the parting line or mold surface. The opening is
machined into the surface of the mold on the parting line. The molded part is cut (by the
mold) from the runner system on ejection from the mold. Ejector pins, also known as knockout
pin, is a circular pin placed in either half of the mold (usually the ejector half) which pushes the
finished molded product, or runner system out of a mold.
The standard method of cooling is passing a coolant (usually water) through a series of
holes drilled through the mold plates and connected by hoses to form a continuous
pathway. The

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coolant absorbs heat from the mold (which has absorbed heat from the hot plastic) and keeps the
mold at a proper temperature to solidify the plastic at the most efficient rate.
To ease maintenance and venting, cavities and cores are divided into pieces, called inserts, and
sub-assemblies, also called inserts, blocks, or chase blocks. By substituting interchangeable
inserts, one mold may make several variations of the same part.
More complex parts are formed using more complex molds. These may have sections called
slides that move into a cavity perpendicular to the draw direction, to form overhanging part
features. When the mold is opened, the slides are pulled away from the plastic part by using
stationary angle pins on the stationary mold half. These pins enter a slot in the slides and cause
the slides to move backward when the moving half of the mold opens. The part is then ejected
and the mold closes. The closing action of the mold causes the slides to move forward along the
angle pins.
Some molds allow previously molded parts to be reinserted to allow a new plastic layer
to form around the first part. This is often referred to as over molding. This system can allow
for production of one-piece tires and wheels. 2-shot or multi-shot molds are designed to "over
mold" within a single molding cycle and must be processed on specialized injection molding
machines with two or more injection units. This process is actually an injection molding process
performed twice. In the first step, the base color material is molded into a basic shape. Then the
second material is injection-molded into the remaining open spaces. That space is then filled
during the second injection step with a material of a different color.
A mold can produce several copies of the same parts in a single "shot". The number of
"impressions" in the mold of that part is often incorrectly referred to as cavitations. A tool with
one impression will often be called a single impression (cavity) mold. A mold with 2 or more
cavities of the same parts will likely be referred to as multiple impression (cavity) mold. Some
extremely high production volume molds (like those for bottle caps) can have over 128 cavities.
In some cases multiple cavity tooling will mold a series of different parts in the same tool. Some
toolmakers call these molds family molds as all the parts are related.

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3.1 DESIGN RULES


3.1.1 MAXIMUM WALL THICKNESS:

Decrease the maximum wall thickness of a part to shorten the cycle time (injection time
and cooling time specifically) and reduce the part volume
INCORRECT

CORRECT

Part with thick walls

Part redesigned with thin walls

Uniform wall thickness will ensure uniform cooling and reduce defects

INCORRECT

CORRECT

Non-uniform wall thickness (t1 t2)

Uniform wall thickness (t1 = t2)

3.1.2 CORNERS:

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Round corners to reduce stress concentrations and fracture


Inner radius should be at least the thickness of the walls

INCORRECT

CORRECT

Sharp corner

Rounded corner

3.1.3 DRAFT:

Apply a draft angle of 1 - 2 to all walls parallel to the parting direction to facilitate
removing the part from the mold.

INCORRECT

CORRECT

No draft angle

Draft angle ( )

3.1.4 RIBS:
Add ribs for structural support, rather than increasing the wall thickness

INCORRECT

CORRECT

Thick wall of thickness t

Thin wall of thickness t with ribs

Orient ribs perpendicular to the axis about which bending may occur
INCORRECT

CORRECT

Incorrect rib direction under load F

Correct rib direction under load F

Thickness of ribs should be 50-60% of the walls to which they are attached
Height of ribs should be less than three times the wall thickness
Round the corners at the point of attachment
Apply a draft angle of at least 0.25

INCORRECT

CORRECT

Thick rib of thickness t

Thin rib of thickness t

Close up of ribs
3.1.5 BOSSES:
Wall thickness of bosses should be no more than 60% of the main wall thickness
Radius at the base should be at least 25% of the main wall thickness
Should be supported by ribs that connect to adjacent walls or by gussets at the base.

INCORRECT

CORRECT

Isolated boss

Isolated boss with ribs (left) or gussets (right)

If a boss must be placed near a corner, it should be isolated using ribs.

INCORRECT

CORRECT

Boss in corner

Ribbed boss in corner

3.1.6 UNDERCUTS:
Minimize the number of external undercuts
oExternal
oSome

undercuts require side-cores which add to the tooling cost

simple external undercuts can be molded by relocating the parting line

Simple external undercut


oRedesigning

Mold cannot separate

New parting line allows undercut

a feature can remove an external undercut

Part with hinge

Hinge requires side-core

Redesigned hinge

New hinge can be molded

Minimize the number of internal undercuts


oInternal

undercuts often require internal core lifters which add to the tooling cost

oDesigning

an opening in the side of a part can allow a side-core to form an internal

undercut

Internal undercut accessible from the side


oRedesigning

a part can remove an internal undercut

Part with internal undercut

Mold cannot separate

Part redesigned with slot

New part can be molded

Minimize number of side-action directions


oAdditional

side-action directions will limit the number of possible cavities in the mold

3.1.7 THREADS
If possible, features with external threads should be oriented perpendicular to the parting
direction.
Threaded features that are parallel to the parting direction will require an unscrewing device,
which greatly adds to the tooling cost.

CHAPTER-04
4.0 MATERIALS:
There are many types of materials that may be used in the injection molding process. Most
polymers may be used, including all thermoplastics, some thermosets, and some elastomers.
When these materials are used in the injection molding process, their raw form is usually small
pellets or a fine powder. Also, colorants may be added in the process to control the color of the
final part. The selection of a material for creating injection molded parts is not solely based upon
the desired characteristics of the final part. While each material has different properties that will
affect the strength and function of the final part, these properties also dictate the parameters used
in processing these materials. Each material requires a different set of processing parameters in
the injection molding process, including the injection temperature, injection pressure, mold
temperature, ejection temperature, and cycle time. A comparison of some commonly used
materials is shown below (Follow the links to search the material library).

Material name
Acetal

Abbreviation

Trade names

Description

POM

Celcon, Delrin, Strong,


rigid,
Hostaform,
excellent fatigue
Lucel
resistance,
excellent creep

Applications
Bearings, cams,
gears, handles,
plumbing
components,

resistance,
rollers,
chemical
slide
resistance,
valves
moisture
resistance,
naturally opaque
white,
low/medium
cost

rotors,
guides,

Acrylic

PMMA

Diakon,
Rigid,
brittle, Display stands,
Oroglas, Lucite, scratch resistant, knobs,
lenses,
Plexiglas
transparent,
light housings,
optical clarity, panels,
low/medium
reflectors, signs,
cost
shelves, trays

Acrylonitrile
Butadiene Styrene

ABS

Cycolac,
Magnum,
Novodur,
Terluran

Cellulose Acetate

CA

Dexel, Cellidor, Tough,


Handles,
Setilithe
transparent, high eyeglass frames
cost

Polyamide 6 (Nylon) PA6

Strong, flexible,
low
mold
shrinkage (tight
tolerances),
chemical
resistance,
electroplating
capability,
naturally
opaque,
low/medium
cost

Automotive
(consoles,
panels,
trim,
vents),
boxes,
gauges,
housings,
inhalors, toys

Akulon,
High strength, Bearings,
Ultramid, Grilon fatigue
bushings, gears,
resistance,
rollers, wheels
chemical
resistance, low
creep,
low
friction, almost
opaque/white,
medium/high

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cost
Polyamide
(Nylon)

6/6 PA6/6

Polyamide
(Nylon)

11+12 PA11+12

Polycarbonate

Polyester
Thermoplastic

PC

- PBT, PET

Kopa,
Radilon

Zytel, High strength, Handles, levers,


fatigue
small housings,
resistance,
zip ties
chemical
resistance, low
creep,
low
friction, almost
opaque/white,
medium/high
cost

Rilsan, Grilamid High strength, Air


filters,
fatigue
eyeglass frames,
resistance,
safety masks
chemical
resistance, low
creep,
low
friction, almost
opaque to clear,
very high cost

Calibre, Lexan, Very


tough,
Makrolon
temperature
resistance,
dimensional
stability,
transparent, high
cost

Automotive
(panels, lenses,
consoles),
bottles,
containers,
housings, light
covers,
reflectors, safety
helmets
and
shields

Celanex,
Rigid,
heat
Crastin, Lupox, resistance,
chemical
Rynite, Valox
resistance,
medium/high
cost

Automotive
(filters, handles,
pumps),
bearings, cams,
electrical
components
(connectors,

31

sensors), gears,
housings,
rollers,
switches, valves
Polyether Sulphone

PES

Victrex, Udel

Polyetheretherketone PEEKEEK

Tough,
very Valves
high
chemical
resistance, clear,
very high cost
Strong, thermal
stability,
chemical
resistance,
abrasion
resistance, low
moisture
absorption

Aircraft
components,
electrical
connectors,
pump impellers,
seals

Ultem

Heat resistance,
flame resistance,
transparent
(amber color)

Electrical
components
(connectors,
boards,
switches),
covers, sheilds,
surgical tools

Polyethylene - Low LDPE


Density

Alkathene,
Escorene,
Novex

Lightweight,
tough
and
flexible,
excellent
chemical
resistance,
natural
waxy
appearance, low
cost

Kitchenware,
housings,
covers,
and
containers

Polyethylene - High HDPE


Density

Eraclene,
Hostalen,
Stamylan

Tough and stiff,


excellent
chemical
resistance,
natural
waxy
appearance, low
cost

Chair
seats,
housings,
covers,
and
containers

Polyetherimide

PEI

31

Polyphenylene
Oxide

PPO

Noryl,
Thermocomp,
Vamporan

Tough,
heat
resistance, flame
resistance,
dimensional
stability,
low
water
absorption,
electroplating
capability, high
cost

Polyphenylene
Sulphide

PPS

Ryton, Fortron

Very
high Bearings,
strength,
heat covers,
fuel
resistance,
system
brown,
very components,
high cost
guides,
switches,
and
shields

Polypropylene

PP

Novolen,
Appryl,
Escorene

Lightweight,
heat resistance,
high chemical
resistance,
scratch
resistance,
natural
waxy
appearance,
tough and stiff,
low cost.

Polystyrene
General purpose

- GPPS

Automotive
(housings,
panels),
electrical
components,
housings,
plumbing
components

Automotive
(bumpers,
covers,
trim),
bottles,
caps,
crates, handles,
housings

Lacqrene,
Brittle,
Cosmetics
Styron, Solarene transparent, low packaging, pens
cost

Polystyrene - High HIPS


impact

Polystyrol,
Kostil, Polystar

Impact strength, Electronic


rigidity,
housings, food
toughness,
containers, toys
dimensional
stability,
naturally
translucent, low
cost

Polyvinyl Chloride - PVC

Welvic, Varlan

Tough, flexible, Electrical

31

Plasticised

flame resistance,
transparent
or
opaque,
low
cost

insulation,
housewares,
medical tubing,
shoe soles, toys
Outdoor
applications
(drains, fittings,
gutters)

Polyvinyl Chloride - UPVC


Rigid

Polycol,
Trosiplast

Tough, flexible,
flame resistance,
transparent
or
opaque,
low
cost

Styrene Acrylonitrile SAN

Luran,
Arpylene,
Starex

Stiff,
brittle, Housewares,
chemical
knobs, syringes
resistance, heat
resistance,
hydrolytically
stable,
transparent, low
cost

Thermoplastic
Elastomer/Rubber

Hytrel,
Santoprene,
Sarlink

Tough, flexible, Bushings,


high cost
electrical
components,
seals, washers

TPE/R

Table 3: Materials.

4.1 MOLDING DEFECTS:


Injection molding is a complex technology with possible production problems. They can either
be caused by defects in the molds or more often by part processing (molding)
Molding
Defects
Blister

Alternative
Name
Blistering

Descriptions

Causes

Raised or layered Tool or material is too hot, often caused


zone on surface of by a lack of cooling around the tool or a

Burn marks

Air

the part
Burn/ Black or

faulty heater
brown Tool lacks venting, injection speed is too

Gas

Burn/ burnt areas on the high

31

Dieseling

part

located

at

furthest points from


gate or where air is
Color streaks Colour

trapped
Localized change of Masterbatch isn't mixing properly, or the

(US)

color/colour

streaks (UK)

material has run out and it's starting to


come through as natural only. Previous
colored material "dragging" in nozzle or

Delamination

Thin

mica

layers

formed

part wall

check valve.
like Contamination of the material e.g. PP
in mixed with ABS, very dangerous if the
part is being used for a safety critical
application as the material has very little
strength

Flash

Burrs

when

delaminated

as

the

materials cannot bond


Excess material in Mold is over packed or parting line on
thin layer exceeding the tool is damaged, too much injection
normal

part speed/material injected, clamping force

geometry

too low. Can also be caused by dirt and


contaminants around tooling surfaces.
particle Particles
on
the
tool
surface,

Embedded

Embedded

Foreign

contaminates

particulates

(burnt material or contaminated material or foreign debris


other) embedded in in the barrel, or too much shear heat

Flow marks

Flow lines

the part
Directionally

burning the material prior to injection


"off Injection speeds too slow (the plastic has

tone" wavy lines or cooled down too much during injection,


patterns

injection speeds must be set as fast as

you can get away with at all times)


Deformed part by Poor tool design, gate position or runner.

Jetting

turbulent flow of Injection speed set too high.


Knit Lines

Weld lines

material
Small lines on the Caused by the melt-front flowing around
backside

of

core an object standing proud in a plastic part

pins or windows in as well as at the end of fill where the


parts that look like melt-front comes together again. Can be

31

just lines.

minimized or eliminated with a moldflow study when the mold is in design


phase. Once the mold is made and the
gate is placed one can only minimize this
flaw by changing the melt and the mold

Polymer

temperature.
polymer breakdown Excess water in the granules, excessive

degradation

from

Sink marks

oxidation etc.
Localized

[sinks]

hydrolysis, temperatures in barrel


Holding time/pressure too low, cooling

depression

(In time too short, with sprueless hot runners

thicker zones)

this can also be caused by the gate


temperature being set too high. Excessive

Short shot

Non-fill

Splay marks

Short mold
Splash mark / Circular

material or thick wall thickness.


Lack of material, injection speed or

/ Partial part

Silver streaks

pressure too low, mold too cold


pattern Moisture in the material, usually when

around gate caused hygroscopic resins are dried improperly.


by hot gas

Trapping of gas in "rib" areas due to


excessive injection velocity in these

Stringiness

Stringing

areas. Material too hot.


String like remain Nozzle temperature too high. Gate hasn't
from previous shot frozen off
transfer in new shot
Empty space within Lack

Voids

part (Air pocket)

of

holding

pressure

(holding

pressure is used to pack out the part


during the holding time). Filling to fast,
not allowing the edges of the part to set
up. Also mold may be out of registration
(when the two halves don't center
properly and part walls are not the same

Weld line

Knit

line

/ Discolored

Meld line / where


Transfer line

two

fronts meet

thickness).
line Mold/material temperatures set too low
flow (the material is cold when they meet, so
they don't bond). Point between injection

31

and transfer (to packing and holding) too


Warping

Twisting

early.
Cooling is too short, material is too hot,

Distorted part

lack of cooling around the tool, incorrect


water

temperatures

(the

parts

bow

inwards towards the hot side of the tool)


Uneven shrinking between areas of the
part
Table 4: Molding Defects.

4.2 TOLERANCES AND SURFACES:


Molding tolerance is a specified allowance on the deviation in parameters such as
dimensions, weights, shapes, or angles, etc. To maximize control in setting tolerances there is
usually a minimum and maximum limit on thickness, based on the process used.[36] Injection
molding typically is capable of tolerances equivalent to an IT Grade of about 914. The
possible tolerance of a thermoplastic or a thermoset is 0.008 to 0.002 inches. Surface finishes
of two to four micro inches or better are can be obtained. Rough or pebbled surfaces are also
possible.

Molding Type

Typical Possible

Thermoplastic

0.008

0.002

Thermoset

0.008

0.002

Table 5: Tolerances.

CHAPTER-05

31

5.0 COSTING & ESTIMATION:


5.1 MATERIAL COST:
The material cost is determined by the weight of material that is required and the unit price of
that material. The weight of material is clearly a result of the part volume and material density;
however, the part's maximum wall thickness can also play a role. The weight of material that is
required includes the material that fills the channels of the mold. The size of those channels, and
hence the amount of material, is largely determined by the thickness of the part.

5.2 PRODUCTION COST:


The production cost is primarily calculated from the hourly rate and the cycle time. The hourly
rate is proportional to the size of the injection molding machine being used, so it is important to
understand how the part design affects machine selection. Injection molding machines are
typically referred to by the tonnage of the clamping force they provide. The required clamping
force is determined by the projected area of the part and the pressure with which the material is
injected. Therefore, a larger part will require a larger clamping force, and hence a more
expensive machine. Also, certain materials that require high injection pressures may require
higher tonnage machines. The size of the part must also comply with other machine
specifications,

such

as

clamp

stroke,

platen

size,

and

shot

capacity.

The cycle time can be broken down into the injection time, cooling time, and resetting time. By
reducing any of these times, the production cost will be lowered. The injection time can be
decreased by reducing the maximum wall thickness of the part and the part volume. The cooling
time is also decreased for lower wall thicknesses, as they require less time to cool all the way
through. Several thermodynamic properties of the material also affect the cooling time. Lastly,
the resetting time depends on the machine size and the part size. A larger part will require larger
motions from the machine to open, close, and eject the part, and a larger machine requires more
time to perform these operations.

5.3 TOOLING COST:

31

The tooling cost has two main components - the mold base and the machining of the cavities.
The cost of the mold base is primarily controlled by the size of the part's envelope. A larger part
requires a larger, more expensive, mold base. The cost of machining the cavities is affected by
nearly every aspect of the part's geometry. The primary cost driver is the size of the cavity that
must be machined, measured by the projected area of the cavity (equal to the projected area of
the part and projected holes) and its depth. Any other elements that will require additional
machining time will add to the cost, including the feature count, parting surface, side-cores,
lifters,

unscrewing

devices,

tolerance,

and

surface

roughness.

The quantity of parts also impacts the tooling cost. A larger production quantity will require
a higher class mold that will not wear as quickly. The stronger mold material results in a higher
mold

base

cost

and

more

machining

time.

One final consideration is the number of side-action directions, which can indirectly affect the
cost. The additional cost for side-cores is determined by how many are used. However, the
number of directions can restrict the number of cavities that can be included in the mold. For
example, the mold for a part which requires 3 side-action directions can only contain 2 cavities.
There is no direct cost added, but it is possible that the use of more cavities could provide further
savings.

CHAPTER-06

6.0. APPLICATIONS:

31

Injection molding is used to create many things such as wire spools, packaging,
bottle caps, automotive dashboards, pocket combs, and most other plastic products available
today. Injection molding is the most common method of part manufacturing. It is ideal for
producing high volumes of the same object. Some advantages of injection molding are high
production rates, repeatable high tolerances, and the ability to use a wide range of materials, low
labor cost, minimal scrap losses, and little need to finish parts after molding. Some disadvantages
of this process are expensive equipment investment, potentially high running costs, and the need
to design moldable parts.
Most polymers may be used, including all thermoplastics, some thermo sets, and
some elastomers. In 1995 there were approximately 18,000 different materials available for
injection molding and that number was increasing at an average rate of 750 per year. The
available materials are alloys or blends of previously developed materials meaning that product
designers can choose from a vast selection of materials, one that has exactly the right properties.
Materials are chosen based on the strength and function required for the final part but also
each material has different parameters for molding that must be taken into account.[8] Common
polymers like Epoxy and phenolic are examples of thermosetting plastics while nylon,
polyethylene, and polystyrene are thermoplastic.

6.1 GENERAL PLASTIC INJECTION MOLDING APPLICATIONS:


Aerospace components
Automotive components
Avionics components
Cable assemblies
Computer electronics
Electronics components
Encapsulations
Engineering prototypes

31

Geophysics
Instrumentation
Marketing samples
Material quality testing
Medical & dental products
Medical laboratories
Model shops, toys, hobby
New product design & development
R&D labs
Test specimens

6.2 THE FUTURE OF INJECTION MOLDING:


Some of the new tendencies and technology in injection molding are the electric injection
machines and the gas assisted injection molding. The electric machines have several advantages
over the old design of the conventional injection machine. It runs silent, its operating cost is less,
and they are more accurate and stable.

Fig.6.1 An all-electrical Injection Machine.

CONCLUSION:

31

Injection molding is one of the most important processes for plastics and it has a very wide list of
kinds of products it can produce, which makes it very versatile.

REFERENCES:

1. MENGES / MICHAELI / MOHREN; How to Make Injection Molds; Third Edition;


Hanser; Cincinnati, USA; 2001
2. RICHARDSON & LOKENSGARD; Industrial Plastics, Theory and Applications;

Third Edition; Delmar Publishers Inc.; Albany, NY, USA; 1997


3. BERNIE A. OLMSTED & MARTIN E. DAVIS; Practical Injection Molding; SPE;
MarcelDekker; New York, USA; 2001
4. MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY; Prof. P.N. Rao, Univarsiti Mara, Shah Alam,
Malasia.
URL:
http://www.energyusernews.com/CDA/ArticleInformation/features/BNP Features Ite
m/0,2584,66600,00.html
www.plasticsone.com
www.badgercolor.com
http://www.mhi.co.jp
www.gasassist.com
www.plasticnews.com
www.engelmachinery.com
www.modernplastics.com
www.plasticstechnology.com