Home Appliance Molding
Molding is not a part and also different from tool. Mold is a set of parts assembly equipment. Modern manufacturing not only requires high precision and long life of molding, but also requires mould to have a clever structural design, a forming mechanism with reasonable research, good performance and efficient manufacturing performance. Mold company also provides the molding process plan while providing molding. The requirements of modern manufacturing for molding are not only required for a single set of mold to have a high level of manufacturing, but also should include use requirements, speed, efficiency and quality assurance of parts. This requires mold product upgrades from extended product chain, full process control from product development to product molding.
Molding of household appliances relies on various types of molds such as gold stamping mould, plastic mould, foaming mould, and adsorption mould. Therefore, home appliances are closely related to home appliance mould. Annual growth rate of mold required by home appliance industry is 10%. A refrigerator requires about 350 sets of mould, worth about 700, 000 USD; a fully automatic washing machine requires about 200 sets of mould, worth 5,000,000 USD; an air conditioner requires already 20 sets just for plastic mould, worth 250,000 USD; a single color TV requires a total of 140 sets of mould, worth about 1,150,000 USD. Only color TV mould have a market of about 500,000,000 USD every year. With the fierce competition in home appliance market, case design has become an important part, new requirements have been placed on the color, feel, precision and wall thickness of appliance housing. Insiders generally believes that large, sophisticated, well-designed (mainly for thin-walled products) injection mold will be welcomed by the market. Therefore, some experts predict that in the future mold market, proportion of plastic molds in the mold will gradually increase, and development speed will be higher than other molds.
In 2009, sales of China’s plastics industry reach 100 billion USD, according to the ratio of 1:100, about 1 billion USD from molding field. Every year, demand for household appliances and plastics reaches one million tons. Plastics are expanding in the field of home appliance applications. Various applications of plastic-based metals have made the application of plastic molds for household appliances more and more extensive. As a tool for plastic molding, nanocomposites, composite plastics, sprayable, spray-free plastics, fiber reinforced thermoplastics will certainly provide a new world for the development of plastic molds based on engineering plastics.
From industrial layout of China’s home appliance mould, home appliance plastic mould manufacturing is concentrated in Guangdong, Zhejiang, Shandong, home appliance foam mould are concentrated in Yinzhou area of Anhui, home appliance stamping mould are concentrated in Jiangsu. Around various types of mold enterprise clusters served by the large household appliance group, supply system of home appliance enterprises is guaranteed. At present, Chinese appliance manufacturing mold account for more than 80% of market share, and are fully self-sufficient, and Chinese mold manufacturing companies are fully capable of producing mould with high molding requirements such as large LCD TV plastic mould and back sheet stamping dies.
It is foreseeable that injection mould with large size, precision and reasonable design (mainly for thin-walled products) will catch the attention from home appliance companies. Quick response, fast delivery of spare parts, and market share for home appliance companies are also guaranteed by advanced mold forming process. In Haier, for example, Haier purchases about 6,000 molds a year, worth more than 90 million USD. While Haier Mould Co., Ltd. who is integrated with Haier, saves valuable time for Haier’s products to be quickly introduced to the market.
In 2010, under the influence of China’s rapid economic growth and global economic recovery, China’s mold industry achieved good recovery growth in the post-crisis period. The total sales of mold nationwide reached about 20 billion USD, a year-on-year increase of more than 14%. According to customs statistics, the total import and export of molds in 2010 reached 4.258 billion US dollars. Among them, mold import was 2.196 billion US dollars, an increase of 19.15%, and mold export was 2.062 billion US dollars, an increase of 4.99%. In China’s mold export areas, in addition to the traditional US, Japan and European and Southeast Asian markets, the development of emerging markets such as Brazil, India, Russia and Australia has achieved results. At present, China’s mold exports have reached more than 40 countries and regions. According to customs statistics, mold exports mainly come from Guangdong, Zhejiang and Jiangsu, followed by Shanghai, Shandong, Fujian, Tianjin, Liaoning, Beijing and Jilin. It can be seen that the Pearl River Delta, the Yangtze River Delta and the Beijing-Tianjin region are still producing areas for mold production, and also for home appliances. The area where the mold is concentrated. In 2010, China exported 503 million US dollars of stamping dies, 1.514 billion US dollars of rubber and plastic molds, and 178 million US dollars of other molds. It can be seen that the advantages of China’s mold industry are still mainly reflected in rubber and plastic mold, which also reflects the strong competitiveness of home appliance mold. The market is more active. During this period, growth rate of mold exports was higher than overall growth rate of industry, and for the first time achieved a good result of the annual foreign trade surplus.
In May of Lunar New Year and the Gregorian calendar in June, China Mould Industry Association will hold the China International Mould Technology and Equipment Exhibition in Shanghai. At this 70,000 square meter exhibition, there are 800 mold companies exhibiting. It will provide manufacturing companies with a choice of mold suppliers, exchange of forming technology, and will also hold a variety of activities such as technology and solution case exchanges for related products, and build a multi-level and all-round communication enterprises platform.
On home appliance mould, Hafo Mould
- High-speed machining technology is widely used
High-speed machining, generally used for large-scale home appliance cover mould and its surface machining accuracy can reach 0.01mm. The high-speed milling and finishing of home appliance mould surface can be used only with a little polishing to save a lot of time for grinding and polishing. High-speed machining significantly shortens molding cycle, thereby increasing the market competitiveness of product.
European and American mold companies use CNC high-speed milling, with five-axis linkage, and spindle rotation is generally 15000-30000r/min. In addition, European and American mold companies also attach great importance to equipment renewal, equipment depreciation period is generally 4-5 years. Addition of CNC high-speed milling machines is one of the key points of equipment investment in mold enterprises.
- High-speed scanner and mold scanning system
High-speed scanner and mold scanning system provide many functions required from model or physical scanning to processing the desired model, greatly shortening development and manufacturing cycle of home appliance mould. Some fast scanning systems can be quickly installed on existing CNC milling machine centers to achieve fast data acquisition, automatic generation of various CNC system processing programs, CAD data in different formats, and reverse engineering for mold manufacturing.
Mold scanning system has been successfully applied in industries of Europe and United States.
Further development of hot runners and gas-assisted mould
More than 80% of plastic mould produced by many foreign injection mould manufacturer use hot runner technology, and effect is very obvious. Many companies in Europe and the United States have been able to successfully use gas-assisted technology on TV casings, washing machine casings, and mould for thick-walled plastic parts. Gas-assisted injection molding has the advantages of low injection pressure, small warping and deformation of products, good surface quality, and easy to form a product with a large difference in wall thickness, which can greatly reduce the cost under premise of ensuring product quality.
- Combination of rapid prototyping technology and rapid tooling technology
Competition in the home appliance market is increasingly fierce, and product renewals are accelerating. The combination of rapid prototyping technology and rapid tooling technology is applied to mold manufacturing, that is prototype of product parts is manufactured by rapid prototyping technology, and mold is quickly manufactured based on the prototype. The application of RP and RT technology from mold design to manufacturing is only about 1/3 and 1/4 of cost of traditional processing and cost.
Many home appliance mold manufacturers in Europe and America use rapid prototyping of silicone rubber mould for a small number of plastic parts, which is very suitable for trial production. Some countries in Europe and America also use aluminum to make injection molds, which can shorten the cycle range of injection molds by 25-30%, greatly reducing weight of home appliance mould and shortening grinding and polishing time by half. Germany has developed a reinforced plastic for cavity and core of plastic mould with a life of more than 100,000 pieces.
Since 2012, China’s home appliance industry has continued to maintain a high-speed growth momentum. Affected by this, home appliance plastic mold industry, which plays an important role in the innovation and scale production of home appliances, has also developed rapidly.
With fierce competition in the home appliance market, mold manufacturing has become an important part of existing design of complex and precise requirements. At the same time, new requirements are placed on the color, feel, precision and wall thickness of the appliance casing. As product is updated faster, new products are emerging, the overall casing of home appliance is developing in a thin, light and delicate direction. New technology is changing with each passing day, which makes the improvement of molding process in full swing. Use of mold has become wider and wider, and requirements for mold are getting higher and higher. The composite forming of metal and non-metal materials, precision ultra-precision forming, special forming and intelligent forming process and technology research have realized a large number of traditional processes such as alternative spraying. New products of green materials and green mould enable home appliance companies to obtain strong molding equipment support.
Data shows that annual demand for household appliances and plastics reaches one million tons. With the continuous expansion of plastics in the field of home appliance applications, various applications of plastic-based metals have made application of home appliance plastic mould more and more extensive. In addition, trend of Chinese appliance industry to the high-end development, home appliance plastic mould will present a “blowout” situation for a long time.
In this regard, association’s person Luo Baihui pointed out that with capacity demand of home appliance industry, development prospects of plastic mold industry, especially home appliance plastic mold industry is undoubtedly exceptionally beautiful. On the one hand, from the current market situation, as equipment support for plastic molding, strategic position of home appliance plastic mold is constantly highlighting. At the same time, application of nanocomposites, composite plastics, sprayable, spray-free plastics, fiber-reinforced thermoplastics, etc., will certainly provide a new world for the development of plastic mold on the basis of engineering plastic.
On the other hand, the necessity of transformation of home appliance industry has also driven deep development of home appliance plastic mold industry. It is understood that current large-scale, sophisticated, well-designed injection mold have received more and more attention from home appliance companies. Among them, large LCD TV plastic mould, back sheet stamping dies and other mould with higher molding requirements have undoubtedly put forward higher requirements and tests for the domestic plastic mold industry.
With the ride of home appliance industry, plastic mould industry is opening a new journey. Luo Baihui pointed out that as market demand continues to release, development space of plastic mold industry will be even greater. Domestic plastic mould enterprises must firmly grasp the development opportunities and develop more products that meet the market demand, so as to be in a more favorable position in the future market competition.
With the increasing size of home appliances, “multi-cavity” developed to improve production efficiency has also led to increasing size of home appliance mold. At the same time, rapid development of home appliances and electronics has also brought about miniaturization and precision of parts. Some home appliance mold processing tolerances are required to be less than 1μm. Therefore, actively adopting advanced equipment and improving the level of home appliance mold manufacturing can achieve significant economic benefits.