In addition, in product design, the principles and practices of traditional injection mold manufacturing have a history of more than a century, and the industry has studied it thoroughly. For example, the draft angle must be 5 degrees or more to meet the requirements of most aluminum molds. 3D printing molds face plastic injection molds, but they are facing challenges. Extra care must be taken with the number and installation positions of plastic mold ejectors. In terms of increasing cavity wall thickness and reducing pressure, 3D printed molds (especially high injection temperature) are somewhat more flexible. Gate designs are also different, and tunnel and point gates should be avoided. The direct gate, fan gate and wing gate should be increased to 3 times the normal size. The flow direction of the polymer in the printing mold should be consistent with the 3D printing line to avoid high filling caused by stickiness and low pressure. The cooling system can increase the life of the mold to a certain extent, but it will not significantly reduce the number of cycles of the printing mold, because the 3D printing mold does not dissipate heat as well as aluminum or steel molds.
In summary, 3D printing technology will not completely replace the status of traditional mold manufacturing. Because 3D printing molds still have certain shortcomings compared with traditional mold manufacturing in terms of finished product quality, product cost and mold design. In addition, 3D printing is not suitable for mass production. The unit price of producing 1 piece and 10,000 pieces is basically close, and the time required for 3D printing is also long. The current 3D printing technology can only be used for the production of molds that require tight production cycles in small batches, and large-scale production is mainly based on traditional mold manufacturing.
Source: China Plastic Machinery Network