Plastic Mold Approval - What are the ways to reduce mold approval cycle?

M

mehmetke

#1
Most of the cases, molds were not approved at first trial, T1.
Current average is third trial, T3. Some cases goes up to T9.

What are the ways to reduce mold approval cycle?
 
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#2
Re: Plastic mold approval

One critical step is to involve the mold maker in the part design process. Another is to develop a set of design guidelines which consider the manufacturability of design features.
 

DanteCaspian

Quite Involved in Discussions
#3
Re: Plastic Mold Approval

Establish a cross functional team:

1) As per above, include the mould maker in the design process. In our case we now have one dedicated technician that has proven his science of moulding abilities, and is doing all the trials, being involved from the beginning. and through the initial setup.

2) Involve the tool maker through the process Establish standards to be addressed during the entire trial process.

3) At a minimum, have a written SPI/procedure that addresses all checks and measures for best practice of: a) customer needs assessment, b) material choices (resin and mould) c) design of the tool (as well as fixtures and the like), d) build of the tool(s), e) processing of, and d) ECOs

4) production staff and process engineers should be included for initial work space set up, flow of people, parts info. as related to the job and use of other companies protocols. In our case, Lean tools and other in-house standards.
Such staff will also assist in packing standards or other manual processes post part ejection. It is here we build the work instructions for the job.
This also allows people empowerment-- I can say it works good for us!

5) In some cases, if not all, you may want to include customer service and sales in the team... keep them involved and updated as to the procedures. That way the customer is never going to be put on hold as all parties are aware of the progress.

6) Quality control. Our lab and document control are updated and involved during the initial stages of processing (once we have parts spitting out of the machine). Improvements are passed through them, or suggested by them as we more forward.


In some cases the trial is done and approved and we still do some improvement efforts to reduce wastes and improve efficiencies.

The PDCA cycle should be built in to the the prevention side of things as your develop procedures for mould trial.
I would also recommend you have a compliant coordinator/project manager head up all the mould trial processes. Such a person needs to be familiar with proper quality assurance methods design and tooling.

For our shop, we went from 3- 9 trials on products to 1-3 while developing these principles I outlined. We have many improvements to make yet as some of those points for us are not as solid as we would like. Some resource allocation is required for us, and we are moving in the right direction.
There is MUCH less internal irritation far less waste, and more value-added work now. Much of it was about establishing communication and standardization through the entire value stream!
 
Last edited:

Golfman25

Trusted Information Resource
#4
Re: Plastic Mold Approval

So you expect them to put some actual thought into what they are doing? :)

The biggest thing imo is designing the part for manufacturability. Have the moldmaker involved and make sure you don't have needless dimensions and tolerances. Of course, with this kid of support you can't buy your molds on price. Good luck.
 
M

mehmetke

#6
Re: Plastic mold approval

One critical step is to involve the mold maker in the part design process. Another is to develop a set of design guidelines which consider the manufacturability of design features.
My company is loceted in Europe and the moldmaker is located in China. There are three dedicated moldmakers. The moldmakers are involved in part design and mold design guidelines were set atstart up stage.

Trial1 (T1) is generally achived in 35 days. 4wks to T2 and another 4 wks to T3. ... Seems like cannot achive the dimensions correctly.

Any suggestion
 
#7
Re: Plastic mold approval

My company is loceted in Europe and the moldmaker is located in China. There are three dedicated moldmakers. The moldmakers are involved in part design and mold design guidelines were set atstart up stage.

Trial1 (T1) is generally achived in 35 days. 4wks to T2 and another 4 wks to T3. ... Seems like cannot achive the dimensions correctly.

Any suggestion
Aha, the downside of buying 'cheap' in China!

In my experience, key personnel have been sent to China to work with the mold maker, to ensure the first trial was good.
 
M

mehmetke

#8
Re: Plastic mold approval

Aha, the downside of buying 'cheap' in China!
Correct. Orginally, years ago, İtaly-> Spain -> Portugal -> Korea -> Taiwan -> and finally molds are produced in China.

Cannot convience purchasing people as usual.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

DanteCaspian

Quite Involved in Discussions
#9
Despite having a on site, staffed tool room and a local mould maker, we have some moulds outsourced in Asia as well.
Despite the stigma of 'China made', there are some good businesses out there; though, yes, you get what you pay for.

Some things that may help: Part approval before payment. Visiting the facility, seeing the process & measuring the results.
 
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