How Overmolding Improves Product Performance

How Overmolding and Insert Molding Improves Plastic Injection Molding Products Performance

There are a number of ways to enhance injection-molded products. With overmolding and Insert molding, plastic part functionality, appearance, durability and strength can all be impacted. Overmolding and Insert molding are two different techniques that may deliver different or similar results based on its application.
Today, we take a look at both process to help you identify which is best for your product and how either process can help to improve your product performance. 

What is Overmolding?
Overmolding is one of the techniques used in plastic injection molding to manufacture a single part using two or more materials. In this process, one material or the first material (also called substrate)  is being molded over a second material, fully or partially covering it during the manufacturing process to obtain a single, finished part. The subsequent materials may also be referred to as the overmold materials. 
Overmolding generally creates an avenue to create a unique custom product that has aesthetic appeal and significantly more efficient product performance.

What are the benefits of Overmolding?
Overmolding helps to convey increased service life and an overall more durable product. The process is also more cost-efficient than post-molding fabrications and depending on the application of the part, overmolding may contribute to better safety applications. 
Plastic overmolded parts have proper alignment. The process allows for advanced design flexibility and leverages the characteristics of multiple plastic resins to deliver highly functional products. 
Examples of products that may be made using overmolding include phones, hand tools, power tools, steering wheels, RFIDs and PCBs. 

What is Insert Molding 
Insert Molding is a process in which plastic is injected into a mold cavity that contains insert pieces prior to an injection molding process. The process is used to produce single molded plastic parts where the insert is surrounded by the plastic. 
Insert molding is used across industries to manufacture parts with reduced size and weight. Examples of parts manufactured using insert molding may include medical devices and instruments such as syringes, automobile air ducts, parts with soft grip handles, filters that have fine mesh inserts and knobs for appliances, assemblies and controls.  

What are the benefits of Insert Molding?
The benefits of insert molding include faster assembly time, cost-effectiveness and the production of single-molded plastic parts that are lightweight with reduced part size. Insert molding also reduces secondary operations such as assembly costs. It helps to ensure that there is no bonding step in the production process and generally makes parts with improved, more-stable structure that have resistance to shock and vibrations. 

Both Insert molding and overmolding deliver enhanced strength, improved appearance and optimal product performance. With these processes metal inserts can be placed into the mold before the injection molding process and multiple resins can be overmolded over each other to achieve specific objectives. Injection molding and overmolding may both drive up the cost of your molded parts but this increase is eventually nullified as there is no post-molding operations and labour costs.

Plastic product parts manufactured using either of these techniques will be more functional, efficient and reliable. Since the plastic injection molding is optimized for reduced assembly steps/parts, insert-molded plastic parts will also boast of a stable, enhanced product design with increased safety for usage. 

FirstPart Plastic Injection Molding Service in China 
FirstPart offers high quality injection molding service for all your plastic part projects in China. We also offer low-volume manufacturing that serve small quantities from 50 to 10000 parts and produce for mass production. Our engineers are always available to advice on the best processes of either insert molding or overmolding, the most suitable materials and design optimization to ensure cost-savings and quick turnaround. Click here to request a free quote now and submit your design for a free evaluation and contact us on how to get started on your next project.