As its name implies, injection molding is a process used for manufacturing parts where a material is literally injected into a mold. This manufacturing process that dates back to the 1800s can be done using any number of materials, such as plastics, glasses, metals, elastomers, and more. In fact, the total number of materials used for injection molding has risen at a rate of 750 a year since the mid-1990s. Most commonly, it is used for processing thermoplastic and thermosetting polymers because these materials have characteristics that make them ideal for molding, like their pliability, how easily they can be recycled, and their remarkable versatility for all types of applications.
Here’s how it works. The material to be injected is put into a heated barrel. There, it is mixed and then injected into a mold cavity at a high pressure using a ram or plunger that forces the mold into all the nooks and crannies of the cavity. Molds can include either one cavity or several cavities. Once in the mold, it cools down and hardens into the shape of the cavity. It’s a fairly simple, straightforward process that is highly effective for achieving manufacturing consistency.
The key to getting the best results when using injection molding for manufacturing parts is to have a good initial mold cavity in the first place. Whether it’s a tiny component or a large body panel of an automobile, the mold needs to be carefully designed to accommodate this manufacturing process. The shape and features need to be exact, and the material of the mold has to be considered as well. All of this plays an integral role in the final outcome of the injection molding process.
A Range of Applications
Because of the flexibility offered by injection molding, it is used in the manufacture of an array of items. When the first injection molding machine was patented back in 1872, the process was developed over the years to produce items like buttons, collar sticks, combs, and other common items. Over the years, however, the industry grew quickly. In World War II, injection molding was in high demand as there was a great need for cheap, mass-produced goods. It was around that time that an American inventor by the name of James Watson Hendry came up with the first screw injection machine. This new molding machine gave manufacturers much greater control over the injection speed and the quality of the products created. As a result, the process become more prevalent and was used for manufacturing parts and goods of all types.
Today, everything from video game systems to musical instruments and automobile dashboards to gears and other mechanical parts is often made via this manufacturing process. Industries that include auto, aerospace, medical, construction, plumbing, toys, and consumer products all depend on plastic molding for a wide range of goods. Just about all plastic products on the market today are manufactured this way. That’s because injection molding is the perfect solution for manufacturing parts at high volumes with reliable, consistent results.
Exemptions for Injection Molding Manufacturers
Manufacturers engaged in injection molding can qualify for various sales tax exemptions. The available exemptions depend on the state, but most states offer exemptions for companies that manufacturer, process, or fabricate any kind of tangible goods that are made available for sale.
In addition to exemptions on the purchase of equipment, injection molding companies may also qualify for exemptions on services that support their manufacturing operations including utility sales tax. In order to qualify for a sales tax exemption on utilities (e.g. electricity, natural gas, etc), you may be required to perform a predominant use study. For more information, click on the link in this paragraph.
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