A mould trial is a process by which a new mould is optimised in order to produce the desired products as efficiently as possible. This makes it one of the most important aspects of injection moulding. We have our own testing facility, so our experts check the product quality and deliver the best to our clients.
The moulds used for its injection moulding are made by specially selected toolmakers from all over the region. Before the moulds are transported to one of the production sites of any company, mould trials are conducted. We’re closely involved in this process.It is important to make sure that this process is conducted in exactly the same manner every time.
The Mould Trial Process
Before the start of the mould trial process, we work on the mould design. Together with our experts, the team will discuss the mould constructions and technical solutions. We do this to avoid unnecessary mistakes in the mould and make sure that the first phase of the mould trial (first out of tool) already provides a good product. Most of the time a standard mould trial process consists of three test phases. Sometimes, we conduct several mould trials during a single phase. If necessary we keep testing and optimising until the product meets the customer’s and our exact requirements and wishes.There are four phase of mould trial
- Mould Installation
- First Out of Tool
- Feedback From The Customer
- The Finishing Touch
Phase 1: First Out of Tool
The first phase is called “first out of tool” (FOT). This is the first time we inject molten plastic into the mould. We test whether the mould closes perfectly, whether there is sufficient cooling, whether the product comes out neatly and whether there are any flashes, air traps or deformations. We draw up a report with our findings, in which we specify the modifications that have to be made. Then proceeds to optimise the mould and samples are sent to the customer to provide a first impression.
Phase 2: Feedback From The Customer
Once any imperfections have been resolved, we conduct a new mould trial with the optimised mould. We present the resulting product to the customer. Together, we go over the cosmetic aspects and the cycle time. The part is then released for testing and the customer is given ample opportunity to test the product. We get another report, which includes the customer’s feedback this time. A second round of optimization follows.
Phase 3: The Finishing Touch
Finally, we conduct a third mould trial with the fully optimised mould. During this phase, it is all about the finishing touch. Think of e.g. choosing between a matt or glossy texture. Once the product has been perfected and every detail checks out, we run a long trial. After this run the mould is transported to one of our production sites. We will always conduct a final on-site mould trial, because certain conditions, e.g. the temperature of the cooling water, are not the same everywhere. Once we are convinced that there is no more room for error and the part is released by the customer, the mass-production process can begin!