Contract injection molder Rodon Group (Hatfield, PA) has written the book—or e-book, to be precise—on injection molding. How to Manufacture a Perfect Plastic Part, which officially comes out today, details four key factors to consider in the pursuit of injection molding perfection: Part design, tool building, material selection and manufacturing.
Injection molders, and plastics processors in general, may find the 32-page tome to be a fairly basic overview of the process, but it's important to bear in mind the intended audience. The e-book is primarily written for engineers and product designers, a Rodon Group spokesperson told PlasticsToday, adding that the intent is to make them more comfortable with some fundamentals of the plastics manufacturing process—what works and what doesn't. From that perspective, How to Manufacture a Perfect Plastic Part achieves its objective.
In the first chapter devoted to part design, issues such as wall thickness, rib and boss design, weld lines and gate placement are addressed. Here and throughout the e-book, an effort is made to clearly explain the elements of part design in a jargon-free, clear manner.
The chapter on tool design and build details the fundamental role that injection mold tooling, including gate placement and size and a proper parts-ejection system, plays in the production of a perfect plastic part.
Several pages are devoted to material selection, and rightfully so, as it is impossible to mold the right part if you choose the wrong resin. A checklist with a series of materials-related questions—Does the part need to be rigid or flexible? Will it need to withstand pressure or weight?—may be helpful to designers and engineers who are unfamiliar with the material selection process.
The e-book concludes with a chapter on manufacturing that covers choosing the right injection molding machine for the job and an easy way to determine the clamping force that will be needed for a project based on the size of the finished part.
Click here to download the free e-book (registration required).