Injection molding is a manufacturing technique for making parts from thermoplastic material. Molten plastic is injected at high pressure into a mold, which is the inverse of the product’s shape. The mold is made by a mold maker (or toolmaker) from metal, usually either steel or aluminum, and precision-machined to form the features of the desired part. Injection molding is widely used for manufacturing a variety of parts, from the smallest component to entire body panels of cars. Injection Molding is the most common method of production, with some commonly made items including bottle caps and outdoor furniture.
The most commonly used thermoplastic materials are polystyrene (low cost, lacking the strength and longevity of other materials), ABS or acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (a co-polymer or mixture of compounds used for everything from toy parts to electronics housings), nylon (chemically resistant, heat resistant, tough and flexible – used for combs), polypropylene (tough and flexible – used for containers), polyethylene, and polyvinyl chloride or PVC (more common in extrusions as used for pipes, window frames, or as the insulation on wiring where it is rendered flexible by the inclusion of a high proportion of plasticiser).