What Is Insert Molding?

There are many complex, multi-material components that need to be used in your industry. Instead of spending unnecessary time and money in a multi-step process, consider insert molding. At Special Tool and Engineering, we offer dedicated molding services for a range of industries. Find out how this process works, its advantages and common ways you can use it to streamline your manufacturing process.

The Insert Mold Process

Many workpieces in modern manufacturing use metal and plastic together. Insert molding is the process of making a plastic mold and inserting another piece, typically metal or other material, into the mold. The result is a custom component with precisely aligned pieces.

An insert mold requires specialized equipment and engineered plastic components. A standard molding machine won’t offer the convenience or precision you need. The latest insert mold equipment can be a significant investment for a small-batch or one-time order, so work with our team at Special Tool and Engineering for the plastic injection insert molding performance you need.

Material Options

The plastic portion of an insert molded workpiece needs to be specially engineered to offer maximum performance. Thermoplastic resins that are moldable are used to offer the features you need and the moldable quality required of an insert mold machine.

Insert materials are usually metal. Here are some common materials you can use to construct the insert element in your final product:

  • Stainless steel
  • Brass
  • Aluminum

Bushings, threaded inserts, sleeves, contacts and screws can all be inserted. Discuss your application to see how you can use state-of-the-art design software to create the optimal blend of materials.

Benefits of Insert Molding

Molding is an efficient way to product plastic components, and insert molding is even more efficient. The alternative to insert molding is creating separate plastic and metal components and manually assembling them. Avoid this time and energy with convenient insert mold services.

You can also enjoy more flexible design options when you use an insert mold strategy. Reduce the size and weight of the final product by avoiding additional fastener or adhesive elements. When the insert is molded into thermoplastic, you don’t need to create additional fastening or connection points.

Industrial Applications

This customizable manufacturing option can be used in a broad range of industries and with a diverse set of inserts. Not only can you choose from a range of materials and create a custom thermoplastic mold, but you can manufacture the inserts to achieve a number of design features. Explore some examples of ways you can improve an existing product or prototype a new one with insert molding.

Types of Inserts

The metal insert component of an insert molded product can serve a number of purposes. Here are just a few ways this element can alter the durability or performance of your thermoplastic part:

  • Contact points
  • Studs, screws, pins or clips
  • Reinforcement
  • Threaded connection points

Contact points allow a plastic component to conduct electricity. The combination of plastic and metal allows for insulation and conduction in precise ways. Studs, screws, clips or pins add a durable element to common wear areas, while reinforcing rods can help the entire thermoplastic component avoid excessive wear. Threaded points are used in valves, medical devices and encapsulated bushings.

Industries Served

At Special Tool and Engineering, we create insert molded components for a number of industries. Ask about custom molding options for any industry not included to see how we can serve your company:

  • Automotive
  • Defense
  • Medical
  • Electronic
  • Aerospace

Insert molds are capable of creating bulk orders of components or being used in prototyping. Once our team of engineers creates a detailed design, a custom mold is created and inserts are manufactured to create the dependable product. Contact our team at Special Tool & Engineering for an insert molding quote today!

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