Mould Making Process
Our innovative mould manufacturing process enables us to produce low cost moulds that offer a production yield comparable to traditional high cost steel or aluminum methods. Our mould design process can save as much as 80% on your initial tooling investment.
Malley-designed moulds provide the flexibility to make design changes – a huge saving and benefit that allows us to accommodate the needs of our customers.
Our skilled fabricators have extensive experience reproducing complex shapes. For parts requiring greater precision, our engineering department can produce 3D models for later CNC machining.
Ideal shape to form
The ideal mould shape has large sweeping curves, no hard edges or angles, and slopes well toward the outer edge of the sheet of plastic. This is the best shape to minimize plastic thinning issues and the easiest type of shape to un-mould when the part is done. With no steep angles, there are fewer areas for the plastic to cling to, meaning less mould maintenance is required.
Difficult to form
Plastic shrinks as it cools. A mould that features a lot of vertical faces can be hard (or impossible) to successfully un-mould. Whenever possible, a part should have sloping sides of at least 5 degrees. Plastic is stretched during the forming process. Hard angles can cause tears. Tightly packed peaks and troughs can cause plastic saddles to form as well. Proper design and attention while forming can make these parts work.
(Typically) Not formable
"Under cuts" create challenges in the thermoforming process. Plastic can stretch into the undercut, but with the opening of the shaped plastic now smaller than the mould, there is no way to remove the plastic from the mould without destroying one or the other.
It is possible, however, to build moulds with moving parts that will make this possible.