Bangor Plastics uses various types of plastic molding – including transfer molding, injection molding and compression molding. Each plastic molding method has advantages and disadvantages.  Below we have outlined the advantages and disadvantages of compression molding.

Compression Molding is a plastic molding process where preheated thermoset materials such as Phenolics or BMC’s, among other composites, are placed directly into the heated mold cavities. The mold is then closed, forcing the material into the cavity detail to produce the part. Heat and pressure are maintained until the molding material has cured. This process yields exceptional dimensional stability, thick and thin cross sections and the use of insert molding in the correct application. While compression molding has some unique benefits, it also has some limitations.

       

Cost-Effective
If you are producing simple, mostly flat, large parts, then compression molding is often the most cost-effective molding method. A few curves or pockets in the part design are acceptable, but extreme angles can be challenging to achieve. Due to the lower pressures, tooling costs are affordable, and molds typically last a long time without warping or needing to be replaced. To offset the cost associated with compression molding’s long cycle times, a mold with multiple cavities can be used to produce multiple parts in the same cycle.

Produces Strong Parts
Compression molding produces  parts that have exceptional dimensional stability, thick and thin cross sections and can also allow the use of insert molding. Compression molding is also used to manufacture parts using composite materials, which means that durable, corrosion-resistant parts and products can be produced easily through this method.

Flexibility in Design
Compression molding allows for low-cost prototyping. This is a great manufacturing too for engineers and product developers.

Applications
Compression molding has a large number of applications and industries. Here are just a few examples:

  • Home Appliances
  • Automotive & Transportation
  • Agriculture
  • Medical Device Parts
  • Kitchenware
  • Electrical Components
  • Aerospace
  • Locomotive

Limitations
While there are many benefits to using compression molding, it does have its limitations. Compression molding doesn’t work well for molding complex parts, such as those with harsh slanted angles or small details. The cycle time, which can be several minutes long, is slow in comparison to high-volume molding methods. Injection molding, for example, often has cycle times of just seconds.

You can learn more about plastic molding methods here. Ready to request a quote for your next project or prototype? Submit your quote request 24/7 using our online portal.