Rapid Prototyping and Low-Volume Injection Molding
Rapid prototype plastic injection molds and low-volume molds produce real injection molded parts for functional testing. They can also serve as bridge tooling to fill the manufacturing gap for production tooling. The difference between rapid injection molding and a low-volume mold is in the details.
Rapid prototype molding is built quickly; the part has the shape and functionality a plastic prototype part would need for testing form, fit and function, but may not have fine details like color preference or surface finish. Rapid prototype molding can run a limit of around 10,000 parts, unlike ICOMold production molds which can run an unlimited quantity of parts and carry our lifetime warranty.
A manufacturing industry trend is to use 3D printed parts for prototypes, test, then skip right to production molds. This method can produce less than optimal results because of the limitations of 3D printing, such as the limited plastic materials available compared to injection molding. Injection molded plastic prototypes, on the other hand, are in many cases absolutely necessary for proper testing of plastic material characteristics.
A low-volume mold can produce the same type of parts as a production mold, but it is only warrantied for 10,000 parts due to its tooling materials. This is why the plastic injection molding cost of a low-volume mold is less than a production mold. It is less expensive, and it is warrantied for 10,000 parts, versus the lifetime warranty we provide on a production mold.
ICOMold can quickly build rapid injection prototype and low-volume molds by using S50C or P20 soft tool steel. Once built, we integrate them with our existing master frame/base to make parts. This “Mold Frame Sharing Technology” helps us reduce cost and time for mold making. We painstakingly catalog our mold frames to improve efficiency and keep costs down.
Design modifications with ICOMold couldn’t be easier. Working with your revised file, we can typically rework our steel molds within hours.
We assign a dedicated project manager and engineer for your injection molding projects. Please check out ICOMold’s Online Project Management System.
Rapid Prototype Plastic Molds and Low-Volume Injection Molding Highlights
> Fast mold and part quote
> Low cost, quick build and good quality
> Mold frame sharing technology
> Online project management
> Trouble-free part modifications
> No size limitations
> Any commercially available material and surface finish
Process for Rapid Injection Molding and Low-Volume Injection Molding
ICOMold’s Instant Online Quoting and Mold Frame Sharing Technology enables us to simplify and shorten both the quoting and tooling manufacturing process.
- Load your 3D CAD file (stp or step format) to get instant mold and part quote
- Upon order confirmation, ICOMold starts the mold and part order process
- Tooling design review by ICOMold engineers
- Upon design approval, ICOMold begins building your injection mold
- Customer examines samples for approval
- Part production begins
Go to our plastic injection molding and CNC machining case studies to see how we helped customers on their projects.