Small Plastic Parts Projects

With nearly 2000 parts to choose from, we can only share a sampling of our 20+ years of work. Our more unique projects are profiled here, demonstrating our capabilities and offering some ideas for you. Though these offer a more complicated view, plenty of our projects are elegant in their simplicity and reliability.

A Solution to Shattering Stock

Challenge — A manufacturer of specialized measuring equipment was experiencing problems in their assembly process. Overmolded lens were shattering during ultrasonic welding. After they moved their tooling to our location, we enlisted the help of the client, the material manufacturer, and a toolmaker in researching the problem.
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Results — We discovered that the previous molder had been manufacturing this part in their smallest press, but one that was still 10x larger than what was necessary. Consequently, the material suffered an extended residence time and degraded. The solution? With our plastic injection molding services we focused on small parts and had the right size machine for the job, enabling them to:

  • Fix the material degradation issue
  • Correct the breakage problem
  • Resume production

Piecing Together a New Product

Challenge — A device manufacturer developed a concept that involved 20 new parts.  Several of them were simple, but others had unique characteristics.  One had 10 clearance holes at 0.010” diameter each.  Another was an unscrewing tool with internal threads. And the enclosure required an ultrasonic rib so that everything came together as a single device.
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Results — The project involved a wide variety of tooling, which we were able to source across seven different toolmakers, each with a specific skillset needed for the job. For three days, our engineers, the toolmakers, and the customer’s engineer laboriously reviewed every aspect of the tool designs to ensure the customer would get exactly when they expected when the pieces were assembled. The designs were finalized and the resulting parts were a huge success. It's great when custom plastic inection molding projects come together.

Simple Design Yields Higher Quality

Challenge — A leading device manufacturer had been producing its products in China and Mexico for years.  While they kept high levels of safety stock to manage lead time variability, their line would shut down when entire batches of a complicated overmolded component experienced quality issues.
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Results — The customer’s goal was to design the next generation in such a way to improve quality. In working closely with them to develop a new solution, the customer was able to:

  • Create a simpler design with fewer points of failure
  • Exceed their quality expectations
  • Reduce their costs by 80%

 

Custom Color Collaboration

Challenge — A product manufacturer planned to make a big splash at its industry’s annual trade show by revealing a line of accessory components. However, time was tight and the custom colors needed to be matched to other fabric accessories. What’s more, there wasn’t an assembly method yet and there would be holiday-related downtime in the period leading up to the show. But, miss the event and miss a big opportunity to take the company to a new level.
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Results — Recognizing the importance and impact that the launch would have, we enlisted and managed a wide range of material vendors, color houses, mechanical designers, and machinists to pull the project together.

  • Parts were completed on time - with a few days to spare.
  • The company's new line was the talk of the show.

New Design Delivers Savings and Throughput

Challenge — A customer had been manufacturing a valve that utilized a combination of rings and O-rings. Each piece required time-consuming hand-adjustment to achieve the right performance. In small quantities, this process was manageable, but the company knew it wouldn’t work when volume grew to 50,000 parts per year.
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Results — Working together, we helped them design a single piece with an integrated seal that performed the same every time with no adjustment needed. The customer enjoyed multiple benefits, including:

  • Cost savings in the manufacturing process
  • Increased throughput by simplifying the assembly process
  • A more reliable product

A Fast Fix to Meet a Seasonal Deadline

Challenge — The stakes were high for a customer with a seasonal product who was dealing with a tooling problem. If they missed the opportunity this season, they would be on the sidelines for an entire year. Their tooling, developed elsewhere, needed diagnosis and some quick changes.
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Results — Trusting that we could resolve the tooling issue, the customer went to work selling their product. In parallel, we diagnosed the issue and consulted with 2 toolmakers to fix the problems. The company hit their production deadline and didn’t miss out on a critical sales season.

Metal Replacement

Challenge — Our client challenged us to come up with a cost effective solution for replacing a key metal piece with a plastic substitute in the hope of providing them with an alternative that would reduce weight, noise, and cost. The piece was a critical component of the client’s overall product, and, by greatly improving efficiency, would drive a larger demand for their product.
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Results — Our team helped their engineer identify the important functions and revise the design for manufacturability. Through this redesign, the customer was able to enjoy:

  • 40% reduction in part weight
  • 80% reduction in cost per piece
  • A quiet part, as a metal-on-metal rattling sound was eliminated
Ready to Start Your Project?

“The engineers at AIM really knocked this out of the park. They really thought through the design to ensure that the piece would meet our expectations. We will definitely be looking forward to working with AIM for all of our future projects.”

— Mark S., Product Manufacturer