Injection molding is a cost effective and time efficient way to manufacture products. The process requires using an injection molding press, manufacturing mold tooling for the product, pressing or melting the material that will be used, and then injecting the material into the mold for it to set, or solidify. The completed mold is then carefully ejected from the cavity. Although injection molding can be done with metals and glass, plastics are the most common material to be used. The most common plastic to be used for injection molding is Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), nylon, polycarbonates (PC), and plastics with a variety of fillers that are also popular. The choice to use a filler in your injection molded product depends on the attributes the customer wants the product to have.
The manufacturing abilities of injection molding have made it a multi-billion dollar industry across the global market, projected to be worth $162 billion by 2020. With evolving technologies, eco-friendly processes and materials, injection molding is becoming an important resource within the manufacturing industry.
Although offshore manufacturing remains a competitive option, domestic manufacturing is becoming a more attractive choice as shipping and labor costs are increasing. Many companies now have more onshore, and nearshore, options with comparable offshore rates. With the manufacturing industry on the rise in North America, that corresponds to job creation. Many machines have replaced the traditional labor jobs of manufacturing while opening the door to the wide variety of technical job openings.
The precision capable with an injection molding machine is perfect for prototypes to mass produced items. The process develops more refined results than a CNC machine and a 3D printer with more options for color, size, and capabilities for the finished product. There are active companies in every state across the United States producing items for every industry across consumer, industrial, and medical markets. Some regions, such as the Northeast, Midwest, Southwest, and Southeast, have more activity than other regions. Big cities - like Austin, Denver, Seattle, New York City - are still beacons for production. Identifying what you want your product to do is the first step to figuring out the best options to develop it from an idea into a thing. Injection molding can be the right option to manufacture your idea.