PIM comparisons with other net-shape forming technology


Feasibility of powder injection molding technology is up to the other competitive processes. In any project, there are two steps in the competition. First step is to filter based on the processing capacity: what kind of technology can be used to form the desired characteristics and properties? The second step is based on the cost of competition: the expected production volume, filtered through the first step of forming process of which one the lowest cost? If the first step does not meet the technical requirements, the costs you don’t need to take into account. Process capability is always the first obstacle, but the cost was always off the core problems.

First of all is to identify whether PIM used in the main processes. This means that PIM can be used to make the original shapes of the parts. Different from the machine, PIM, as subsequent processing efficiency is not high. Then judge whether the product has a three-dimensional features discrete parts, different with wire, cable, sheet, tube or plate, these products at least is longer in one dimension, continuous process for production of the most appropriate. Next needs to be considered is the economics of production volume, is the quantity of the order, is used to determine cost of tooling and equipment. Realistically speaking, required over 5,000 pieces of the order.

Several NET-shape forming technology to compete with PIM’s advantages and limitations
Technology Advantages Limitations
Die-casting High production efficiency

Shapes can be complicated

Required draft angle

Low mechanical properties

Defects

Molded Flexible choice of materials

High material utilization

self-lubrication

A high degree of automation

Gap will reduce the material properties

Limitations on size, shape, and precision

High cost of mold

Usually applied to small parts

Precision casting Good shape complexity

Wide range of possible sizes

For high-performance materials

Productivity of medium

Low accuracy

Shape complexity is limited

Machining Tolerance can be very high

Low tooling costs

Widely-used

A wide size range

Mass wasting

Waste materials discharged coolant

Productivity of medium

Die cast Wide range of shapes

Using a wide range

Can be used inside the core

Bad surface quality

Pores and defects

Pores and defects

Powder forging Powder forging

High production efficiency

Good mechanical properties

Low accuracy

Geometric limited

Short mold life

Only for a limited number of alloys

Only suitable for mass production

Due to begin PIM needs high tooling cost, when production is low, the machining is suitable. For the parts that have strict tolerances, first using PIM components, then using finishing precision to control tolerances. In order to compete successfully with other craft, PIM must at a minimum cost, under the premise of meeting the project requirements, PIM application materials, parts, product strength, shape complexity, surface roughness has the advantage of size and productivity.

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