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.

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.

Plastic Injection Molding
Proto Labs provides quick-turn thermoplastic injection molding often used for prototyping, bridge tooling and short-run manufacturing up to 10,000+ parts. We use advanced aluminum alloy molds that allow us to eliminate the costly and time-consuming custom engineering that normally goes into the development of tooling. Proto Labs offer hundreds of engineering-grade resins that produce molded parts that are strong and can have excellent finishes.

Quick-turn injection molding uses the industry standard production process for parts, so it’s an excellent predictor of manufacturability when you move to large-scale production. At Proto Labs, we support an ever-increasing maximum part size and degree of complexity, and continue to introduce new materials that help designers and engineers make better products.