Maintaining a consistent wall thickness is a vital consideration in injection molding, as wall thickness impacts many factors of the part, including quality and profitability. Molding parts with consistency in wall thickness, and maintaining those dimensions is important. When parts are molded with inconsistent wall thickness, the molded part is subject to warping, cracking and rejection.
Why Wall Thickness Matters
Depending on the part design and the functionality, the wall thickness may be a critical dimension identified by the customer. Any critical dimension is an area of focus for injection mold designers and process technicians. Maintaining a uniform wall thickness is important for many reasons, but especially when dictated by the customer.
Functionality in Assemblies
Wall thickness affects the functionality of the part, especially in small injection mold parts, which are often part of a larger assembly. All dimensions must be molded to specification to fit and work together without jamming up an assembly line.
The thickness of walls affects the overall part quality, as every molder knows consistency is key to quality molding. Once you determine your parameters and lock in your process set up procedures, you should be able to mold quality parts consistently. Check your critical dimensions and wall thickness periodically to ensure a consistent process.
Wall Thickness and Profitability
Wall thickness affects total cycle time as a thicker wall will require a longer cooling time. Shaving seconds off your process can mean lower cost to produce. Just be sure it’s not at the expense of molding quality product. Nail down the optimum cooling and overall cycle time required to maintain consistent wall thickness for quality molded product. Molding substandard product or worse yet, customer rejects, are counter productive having a negative effect on profitability.
Thicker walls use more material and depending on material cost. This can make a difference in the total manufacturing cost, especially in high volume production runs.
These are several reasons why a thicker wall is not necessarily always a safer design. In fact, when wall dimensions are not specified, the goal should be to maintain the thinnest wall possible within part specification, geometry and overall functionality. If part design does not allow for completely uniform walls, a graduation of thickness should not exceed 10%. Doing so could create areas of stress.
QT Manufacturing for Custom Mold Design and Injection Molding
QT Manufacturing is a skilled and experienced precision injection mold design and injection molding company. We understand the key to quality parts begins with a quality tool, followed by experienced injection molding processors. We provide a total turnkey solution for all your plastic manufactured components.
QT Manufacturing is registered to ISO9001:2008 and AS9100C, providing a high level of quality in all our processes, from design to full production.
QT Manufacturing is a valued supplier to the automotive and aerospace industry, meeting and exceeding customer expectations with quality product, delivered on time. Contact us today to speak with an engineer, and learn how we can add value to your supply chain.