5 Benefits of In-House Custom Tooling for Rubber Molding 

Did you know Micro-Tronics offers in-house custom tooling for rubber molding?

Our motto is “precision from start to finish,” and it certainly applies to our custom molded rubber capabilities. We leverage our in-house expertise, state-of-the-art equipment, and efficient teamwork to not only manufacture your precision rubber components, but also to create the tooling required for rubber molding. 

Custom Tooling for Rubber Molding: Our Proprietary Process

Rubber molding turns uncured rubber (and other elastomer materials) into usable parts and products. It involves placing uncured rubber into a mold (or “tooling”) that is typically made from aluminum or stainless steel. Heat and pressure combine to cure, or vulcanize, the rubber into the final product.

Custom tooling

Many rubber molding manufacturers rely on outside vendors to supply the tooling for custom parts, but at Micro-Tronics, we keep the entire job in house. 

Our dedicated tooling department employs a proprietary process to quickly and accurately create tooling for your rubber parts. While some molds require precision work with our EDM manufacturing services, CNC machining capabilities like milling and turning are the standard manufacturing methods for these projects. We have a specific site and dedicated machines for tooling work, so our tooling department is never competing with other customer projects. 

Once the tooling is made and delivered to the production team, we can manufacture your custom molded rubber parts at our

 dedicated rubber molding facility.  

Benefits of In-house Capabilities for Rubber Molding 

How do our combined in-house capabilities benefit our customers? Here are five ways:

1. Cost-Effectiveness

Because we keep the entire job under one roof, using machines we own and materials with which we’re very familiar and have on hand, we don’t need to contract with  an outside molding vendor. That helps keep manufacturing, transportation, and shipping costs down.

2. Efficiency

Our dedicated tooling department can keep your project on track and even expedite production by strategically prioritizing and scheduling work on the shop floor. 

In the past, we’ve been able to deliver parts to customers in a tight timeframe because we had everything we needed on-site—machines, materials, and experts—and we could adjust our schedule easily to meet the project’s deadline. We are not beholden to an outside vendor.

3. Flexibility

Making your tooling in-house allows us to be highly flexible when iterations are necessary. 

Our fully integrated team can move quickly if a mold needs adjustments during the manufacturing process. We can give and incorporate rapid feedback and make tweaks in real-time since we’re all part of the same team. 

The molder and production team are in constant communication, and all of our departments work together to ensure the parts are correct at every stage of production. 

We’re also flexible about repairs and replacements. Tooling wears out over time, but we can be proactive about repairing it or making a new mold as needed.

4. Design expertise  

Creating the tooling for a rubber mold is a challenging process that requires breadth of knowledge about the part material.

Rubber is viscous and can be difficult to work with depending on how it flows. It shrinks during the curing  process and is often reinforced with performance fabrics that can make achieving proper rubber flow challenging. . 

Manufacturing a functioning mold is even more complicated when designing for parts with complex geometries, such as deep-draw rubber diaphragms—our specialty.

Fortunately, our team has knowledge and experience with rubber and elastomer products and can design tooling for your molds to accommodate shrinkage, viscosity, and intricate geometries.

5. Scalability

If you’re scaling your product line and need to produce more parts quickly, we can leverage our multi-cavity tooling capability to help you meet demand. Instead of manufacturing one or two custom molded rubber parts at a time, we can make six, eight, or twelve per machine actuation to scale production.

We know standard parts don’t always meet your needs, and our team of experienced molders and elastomer manufacturers is here to turn your vision into a reality. 

If you’re seeking custom molded rubber parts such as diaphragms, gaskets, seals, solid rubber shapes, rubber-to-metal bonded seals, or other parts with unique specifications, we can help by making the tooling and manufacturing the part. 

Let’s get started on your next project—request a quote today!

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