Plastic or Metal? 5 reasons why you should start considering metal to plastic conversions
As we continue to discover many suitable applications of plastic as well as its cost savings, many manufacturers and designers have begun to structure new projects around plastic parts. More often than not, plastic alternatives to metallic parts are explored for both cost-effectiveness and wider flexibility in design that can score manufacturers a broader market application. Today, we take a look at 5 solid advantages that plastic components over metals and why you should start considering a switch.
Cost is right at the heart of production, and one of the top advantages of moving from metal to plastic is reduced manufacturing cost. As a designer or product developer, you get to save cost by doing away with welding costs and additional finishing that may be peculiar to the metal being used. Multiple metal components can also be made into one plastic mould.
Using plastic also saves cost on supply and shipping. Plastic parts will typically weight less than metals, which means lower shipping and handling cost. In today’s array of shipping where weight is a significant factor, small weight differences may lead to substantial savings especially when dealing with millions of parts.
Lighter overall product weight
We have already discussed how weight ties to cost.
Plastic parts will weight lesser than a similar part made from metal. With customers and end users continually demanding lighter product with appreciable strength, designers may consider using plastic that has been engineered for more strength to deliver stronger and handier products that weigh less rather than using metals.
More design flexibility
Injection-moulded plastic parts can easily be made to carry shapes, geometries and structures that will be otherwise difficult to build in a metal. This is because plastic injection moulding isn’t limited by metal fabrication process or traditional machining, making it suitable for designs that are more flexible.
This range of possibility allows plastic to deliver more complex designs that are practical and functional for the need at hand.
One of the many benefits with plastic injection moulding process is its ability to create advanced plastic parts with tight tolerances and exacting sizes. Plastic parts will usually fit without the need for any further machining, giving designers an ability to create a better final product that is of the right fit and finish over mass production volumes.
Plastic parts also eliminate the need for lubrication that is usually required in other metal-metal components due to its tighter structure and assembly.
Temperature and chemical resistance
While metal components may vary in their degree of corrosion and temperature resistance, plastics have amazing resistance to both. Metals begin to change and lose their structure when exposed to water and air, while plastic parts would remain unchanged. This means that plastic parts do not need to be coated to protect it from harsh conditions.
As chemical resistance is very important for industrial applications, plastic may be the part to go when looking to make a part or component that will continue to work without degradation. Metals on the other hand may experience a wear-off of this protection which may cause some type of failure of the part.
Taking the next step
The possibilities of plastic injection moulding deliver all of these advantages are more. If you are looking to move from metal to plastic, First Part can help you with your production and conversion. With state-of-the art equipment, high quality control and quick turnaround available for low-volume and high-volume manufacturing, we are your one-stop service provider.
First Part Plastic Injection Moulding Process in China
With over 1000 projects executed to completion for both local and international clients, our high-quality rapid prototyping services, low-volume manufacturing, CNC machining, 3D printing and plastic injection moulding deliver top-tier product with all round compliance with specifications. Our processes are engineered for optimal cost savings and high repeatability. Contact us here today and learn how our plastic injection moulding services can help you save cost, improve your design flexibility and deliver an overall better product.
Tag: CNC Machining; 3D Prototyping; Cast Aluminum; CNC Rapid Prototyping; Plastic Prototype; 3D Printing
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