Prototype plastic mold
Prototype plastic mold is the plastic injection mold made with cheap mold steel such as S50C, aluminum, or local P20 to do sampling or small quantities production. Normally we do not need to make the wear plate, mold base steel is standard S50C. Normally mold life is less than 100,000shots, it is similar as AISI SPI 104 standard.
Different resin request different prototype plastic mold steel.
General resin to choose core and cavity steel
For the ABS, PC, PP, PE, PA66, nylon etc resin without glass fill, we can use S50C to assure 10000shots. What will happen after 10000shots, maybe it is good, maybe there is flashes based on the plastic product structure and production maintenance. If it is very complex plastic with lots of undercut and mold need to be used lots of sliders or lifters, then we should consider P20 etc. Anyhow our engineers in Flymould will offer the whole solution and suggestions for you.
If your mold life is 50,000shots or 100,000shots, you can consider to use local P20 such as WY718, WY2311 for the core and cavity. Why this? As WY2311 is about 19RMB/kg, 1045 or S50C or S45 should be from 8RMB to 12RMB /kg.
Resin with glass fiber to choose core and cavity steel
For the resin with glass fiber such as ABS+GF, PP+GF, PC+GF, we should consider to use China LKM H13 steel if the mold life is more than 10000shots steel for core and cavity due to the glass fiber will speed abrasive wear up. If we use local P20 such as WY718, WY2311, the mold should be possible to shot 10000shots without flashes. LKM H13 is the most economical thorough hardness, it is about 50RMB/kg on the mold manufacturing.
If my mold life is 50,000shot, can I choose the 1045 for the core and cavity. The answer is yes, but there should be more possible to have flashes during the molding production.
Why we should use aluminum for the core and cavity for prototype plastic mold manufacturing?
If we just need 10000parts, we can also consider to use aluminum for the core and cavity. The aluminum core and cavity cost is similar to use 1045 or S50C steel for prototype plastic mold manufacturing, but it is easier to manufacture and have less shipping cost thanks to that they have lower weight. In a word, to use aluminum for the core and cavity can be cheaper.
Please kindly noted for the large mold, there is no advantage to use aluminum for core and cavity due to local large aluminum block have sand hole. Also for the complex plastic mold, it is not recommend to use aluminum for the core and cavity due to it is easier to have flashes during the molding production.
The end, for the aluminum mold, we had better choose for the simple and small and mid-size prototype plastic mold.