Surface Treatment of Injection Molded Parts


Surface treatment is an essential part of the manufacturing process for injection molded parts. It serves to enhance the appearance and functionality of the finished product. Several surface treatment methods can be used to produce a particular finish or texture on the injection molded parts, which will improve their performance and durability.

Here are some of the most commonly used surface treatment methods for injection molded parts:

1. Painting

Painting is perhaps the most popular surface treatment method for injection molded parts. This method involves applying a coat of paint or lacquer to the surface of the molded part, giving it a glossy, smooth finish. This finish can be either a solid color or a custom-designed graphic pattern. The paint used for injection molding can be a water-based, solvent-based, or powder-based paint.

2. Printing

Printing is another surface treatment method used for injection molded parts. The printing process applies graphics or text designs to the part's surface. The printing method can be either screen printing, pad printing, or digital printing. Printing can offer a more economical way of producing a custom-designed part with vibrant colors or high-resolution graphics.

3. Plating

Plating is a surface treatment method that involves using a layer of metal electroplating. Metal electroplating is a process in which an electric current is introduced into a metal-containing solution. This causes the metal ions to deposit onto the surface of the injection-molded part. Plating can be an excellent method for adding a layer of protection for a product’s circuit board or electrical contacts.

4. Texturing

Texturing is a surface treatment method used to achieve a textured or rough finish on the injection-molded part's surface. This process can be carried out on the mold, which produces a textured pattern on the part's surface, or it can be done on the surface of the molded part using a laser etching machine. Texturing can enhance the tactile feel of a product and provide a better grip for the user.

5. Sandblasting

Sandblasting is a surface treatment method that involves bombarding the surface of the injection-molded part with tiny particles of sand or other abrasive substances. This process removes any imperfections or inconsistencies in the part's surface, resulting in a more even and smoother finish.

In conclusion, surface treatment is critical to enhance the appearance and functionality of injection-molded parts. The surface treatment method used depends on the specific product requirements, such as the finish, texture, and desired functionality. A well-treated injection molded part can significantly improve the product's quality and add value to the customer's experience.