Overmolding is a procedure in injection molding. In overmolding, two materials (substrate and other) are utilized to combine the connector to the wire to create an individual part. For this to happen, the cable assembly has to be inserted into the mold. In the process of overmolding, a strong plastic element is overlaid with a layer of TPU or any other mold material. The overlaying is done using the insert or multiple shot molding procedure. In simpler terms, overmolding is the procedure of adding layers of materials over an existing part to come up with a new one.
How versatile is overmolding?
Overmolding is one of the most versatile methods of creating parts. Overmolding can also produce a wide range of results. For instance, it can be added to a product to change it by adding color, texture, or incorporating a new functionality element. The surface of a product can be transformed to become rough or smooth. The transformation depends on the type of material that is applied. It can also be changed to another color based on the color of the material that is used. Some manufacturers also use the overmolding technique to improve the durability or comfort of handing a product. Generally, overmolding can be used in limitless applications.
Factors to consider before using overmolding technique
Overmolding offers a lot of benefits. For instance, it is used to increase the shelf appeal of products, reduce the cost of production, and enhance a product’s performance. Because of the numerous overmolding benefits, it is easy for manufacturers to use it as a production technique. However, there are some instances when it may not be a suitable production technique. When considering the method, manufacturers have to consider the following factors;
The design of a product will determine whether overmolding would be an ideal solution. Remember, some intricate designs cannot accommodate overmolding techniques.
2. Materials selection
The type of material also plays a significant role in determining whether or not overmolding would be an ideal technique. Before you even consider the method, you need to think about the materials you will require. The primary material you need to consider is the substrate. Once you have chosen the substrate material, you have to use it to select the ideal or compatible TPE chemistry.
3. Production volume
Overmolding technique is ideal during instances when the product volume is high. In such cases, the method reduces the costs of production. However, spending money on overmolding when the intended product quantity is low could be expensive and unnecessary.
Other essential factors to consider include;
- Costs of labor
- Cost of production
- Tooling quotes
Overmolding is a process of injection molding where an additional layer is added to an already existing part to come up with a new one. It is a very versatile method of production. For instance, it can be used in product customization, cable assembling, and the solar energy industry, to name a few. It also offers numerous benefits, including:
- Improved product quality
- Enhanced durability
- Reduced production costs
- Increasing the rate of production
- Reduced human error