Rapid Tooling is when Rapid Prototyping techniques and conventional tooling practices are used together to produce a mold quickly. This process is also used to prepare parts of a model from CAD data in less time and at a lower cost compared to traditional manufacturing methods. Rapid Tooling is used as a channel to produce injection molded parts.
Injection moulding is used for rapid prototyping and for low-high volume manufacturing. It is used for producing parts in the thousands. Well known examples of injection moulding are lego bricks, bottle caps, and medical syringes.
The injection moulding process has three major components; an injection moulding machine, raw plastic, and the machined mould. The raw plastic is melted in the injection moulding machine and then injected into the mould where it cools and solidifies into the final part. Once the part has cooled, it is removed and finished.
Nylon is a thermoplastic with great mechanical properties and high chemical and abrasion resistance. It is reinforced with glass fibres. Available in Nylon 30% GF and 40% GF.
Polypropylene is the most common material used in injection moulding and has high chemical resistance. Also available in food grade.
PA6 is a performance plastic with a high degree of toughness and good surface finish.
PA12 is a performance plastic with low moisture absorption, high dimensional strength, and flexibility.
High density polyethylene has a high strength-to-density ratio, impact resistant, and long lasting.
Low density polyethylene is flexible, had good impact resistance, lightweight with high strength.
Polyoxymethylene has high temperature resistance, excellent chemical resistance, and good dimensional stability.
ABS is a thermoplastic with high impact resistance, low density, and low cost. It is reinforced with glass fibres. Available in ABS 30% GF and ABS 40% GF.