Understanding Extrusion and Injection Molding

Within the field of industrial manufacturing, extrusion and injection molding are methods of production used to make products of different shapes and sizes.

Extrusion

Extrusion is the process of pushing molten plastic, rubber or other compounds, fed by screws through two-dimensional die openings. The extruded material passes through a series of templates that retain the desired shape and size as the molten compound cools. The extrusion process produces a two-dimensional form, continuous in length. The form may be cut into desired lengths, and then machined, punched, or otherwise fabricated into the end-product. The extrusion process can transform hard and brittle materials into complex two-dimensional shapes with a smooth finish.

Injection Molding

Injection molding consists of two components: the injection unit and the mold. The injection unit guides the molten material into the mold where it fills the cavities, and where it cools and hardens. Then the product is ejected from the mold. There is typically a minor amount of cleanup, is complete with no secondary or sub-process needed. Injection molding produces three-dimensional shapes, which may be composed of metals, plastics, rubber, and various other compounds.

Extrusion and Injection Molding in Manufacturing

Both extrusion and injection molding are highly repeatable processes. Each process can yield minimal waste or scrap, is highly repeatable and is designed for mass production. Deciding which is the most suitable process is made case-by-case, based on the material, shape and quantities among other factors. Contact us if you need help with your product and process decisions.

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