Building a Mould

Inside a mould

The mould consists of two primary components, the injection mould (A plate) and the ejector mould (B plate). Plastic resin enters the mould through a sprue or gate in the injection mould; the sprue bushing is to seal tightly against the nozzle of the injection barrel of the moulding machine and to allow molten plastic to flow from the barrel into the cavity. The sprue bushing directs the molten plastic to the cavity images through channels that are machined into the faces of the plates. These channels allow plastic to run along them, they are referred to as runners. The molten plastic flows through the runner and enters one or more specialized gates and into the cavity geometry to form the desired part.

The amount of resin required to fill the sprue, runner and cavities of a mould comprises a "shot". Trapped air in the mould can escape through air vents that are ground into the parting line of the mould, or around ejector pins and slides that are slightly smaller than the holes retaining them. If the trapped air is not allowed to escape, it is compressed by the pressure of the incoming material and squeezed into the corners of the cavity, where it prevents filling and can also cause other defects. The air can even become so compressed that it ignites and burns the surrounding plastic material.