With 3D printing advancing every day, some may wonder why we don’t put a greater focus on it. While it has been a great invention, there are drawbacks to it. Read on to find out more!

What are some differences between plastic injection molding and 3D printing?

Cost

  • Up front, the cost of 3D printing is low, but due to the chance of misprints, it could go up. Plastic injection molding is relatively expensive at first, but the costs will go down over the course of a high-volume production run.

Quality

  • The number of 3D printable materials is very small compared to the number available for injection molding.  Because of this, 3D printed things will not have the same plastic injection moldingproperties as injection molded parts.

Time

  • When using injection molding you inject polymers into a mold and then rapidly cool them in order for another cycle can start. 3D printing requires a plastic filament be melted and used a drop at a time to make the printed item; which can take hours. Overall, plastic injection molding is a much faster process than 3D printing.

Technical Issues

  • For the most part, injection molding doesn’t come with any technical difficulties, but software glitches continue to hit 3D printers

What are your thoughts on the two processes? Would you prefer plastic injection molding or 3D printing? Comment below!