Designing parts with consistent wall thickness is a fundamental rule of plastic injection molding, and ignoring it can lead to sink, warp and inaccurate or non-functional parts. Yet the functional requirements of consumer, medical, aerospace and industrial products often leave designers little consideration for the material flow and fill properties of plastic, both of which are at least partially determined by wall thickness.
Pay close attention to rib-to-wall thickness ratios. To prevent sink, the thickness of the rib should be about half of the thickness of the wall.
This month’s tip discusses:
- Guidelines to avoid cosmetic defects associated with thin and thick features
- Material alternatives to improve wall thickness consistency
- Important questions to ask about material properties
- The benefits of design for manufacturability analysis
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Our automated, interactive ProtoQuotes with real-time pricing information and free design for manufacturability (DFM) analysis are one of the most valuable tools you can get at Proto Labs. You can upload a 3D CAD model online at any time to receive a quote within hours.
The DFM analysis helps eliminate potential problems like sink, challenging undercuts or walls that are too thin or thick. Once a part design is ready and a quote approved, production begins almost immediately.
See how easy it is to navigate ProtoQuote with our quick video.