INSERT MOLDING CASE STUDY
Posted on 10.15.2019previous posts next posts
Founded in 1990, Par 4 Plastics is a family-owned, custom plastic injection molder. Our world-class facility has over 50 injection molding machines that range from 85 tons to 1150 tons, allowing Par 4 Plastics to run a variety of projects and deliver on exceeding expectations.
Insert molding, one of Par 4 Plastics wide-range of production capabilities, is the process of building a mold to hold an insert, either a plastic piece or metal component, which is then inserted into the mold where plastic is molded around the insert.
Once the mold is designed, automation is put in place to feed the component into the mold, eliminating the need for an operator. Par 4 Plastics has a feeder table where one of our operators loads the table. Par 4 Plastics has a feeder table where one of our operators loads the table. After this, the table will turn, then the robot picks up the component and inserts it into the mold. The robot comes in and removes the finished parts and installs the new components to be molded in the next cycle.
Par 4 Plastics was presented with a challenge from a company in the automotive industry to produce a part that goes inside the door, used to roll the window up and down, in a more efficient way. The window motor pushes this piece up and down, allowing you to enjoy a nice breeze.
Previously, the customer had this part created on a vertical machine with a different type of mold called a shuffle mold. This mold requires an operator to stand there the entire time to feed the machine and manually retrieve the finished parts out of the mold.
The design experts at Par 4 Plastics created a solution that was both time-efficient and cost-effective. Operators now load the blank stamping onto a magazine, which feeds the robotics. The automation system allows the operators to complete other value-added tasks while the automation does the work, even counting the number of quality pieces per tote, then moving the tote down the line.
Par 4 Plastics’ solution produced gains in efficiency by cutting down on production time through automation. This solution resulted in the job being reduced from a full-operator to a half-operator. The automation allows the operator to run a press in addition to monitoring the machine, increasing overall production. With the operator not having to manually retrieve the finished product, efficiency is increased as downtime in production is eliminated, creating additional value for the customer that was not previously there.
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