15 Jul 2013

Last Updated on

At least to some degree, asking what plastic injection molds cost is a lot like asking, “How much is a car?” Will your mold be a Pinto or a Porsche? And don’t forget that the price of a mold is just the beginning. To determine overall plastic injection molding costs for any project, you have to consider raw material, operation, and repair costs later down the road too.

 

The cost to make a plastic injection mold

 

The determining factors in the cost of your mold are a combination of the part size, complexity, material, and anticipated quantities. For instance, if you wanted 1,000 washers per year, we would recommend a single cavity mold, meaning it makes one washer per machine cycle. In that case, the mold would probably be $1,000-2,000.

 

Plastic Injection Mold

 

However, needing 100,000 Xbox controllers every month is a different story. For this requirement, we would build a 12 cavity hardened “family” mold which would make four Fronts, four Backs, and four Button Trees every cycle. Of course, this type of mold comes with a cost. You’d better have $60-$80,000 or more to invest!

 

These examples are extreme, but they illustrate the range of costs to anticipate. Your particular part will most likely fall somewhere in between that. At Rex Plastics, our molds average around $12,000.

 

Plastic injection molding price guide

 

As a full-service plastic injection molding company that manufactures molds from conception to completion, pricing for each job we fulfill can vary dramatically.

 

But we know injection molding price estimates are critical to any successful project.

 

That’s why we’ve put together the following price guide to help you budget for your mold. The injection molding cost examples are categorized by type (Rapid Prototyping, Insert Tooling, High-Production Tooling), and degree of difficulty (Basic, Intermediate, Advanced).

 

plastic injection molding cost guide for rapid prototyping insert tooling and high production tooling

 

Injection molding material cost

 

Material selection is another consideration in determining what plastic injection molds cost. Any plastic product made from fiberglass filled material, for example, will wear down most common molds. Only a mold made from hardened tool steel can withstand injection molding with fiberglass filled material.

 

Planning your next project

 

If you have a target price established for your parts, tell your mold builder. They can design the mold accordingly and plan for the right number of cavities to achieve that price. The more cavities (or parts made per cycle), the less expensive the parts will be, also allowing for higher output.

 

gray human figurine choosing from assortment of plastic injection molded hands

 

While you don’t need to know every detail about the types of molds available, it’s always a good idea to come prepared. Supplying the basics to your mold builder will help them build the best tool for your project. We recommend that you find a mold maker who also has production capabilities. The company running the production won’t want to build an inadequate mold because they know they have to use it.

 

And if you’re thinking of outsourcing your mold making, take into consideration all of the factors in bringing the mold to optimum production standards outlined in this American Mold Builders Association article. You might be surprised to learn the true cost of off-shoring!

 

Whatever your project requires, Rex Plastics can help you decide whether you need a Ferrari or a Fiat. 

 

Contact Rex Plastics to discuss your plastic injection mold needs

47 Comments

  1. Jake says:

    how much would a console mold cost and how many would i need? Same with controllers… do i need enough to make 100,000 a month?

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Jake,
      That is impossible to say without looking at the design, but as a general rule of thumb if you need 1,000 or more per year injection molding is worth looking at.

  2. Andrew Barton says:

    What would be the rough cost of a mold for a single cavity helmet? Full or open face? Very simple bare bones design?

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Andrew,

      Without seeing the specific design it’s difficult to give an estimate. Sometimes even small design features can add thousands to the cost of the mold. If you have a drawing we could provide a free quote.

  3. Tyler ange says:

    Interested in disc golf disc mold …have u ever made any

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Tyler,

      We have not made any golf disc parts specifically but that is well within our capability. Please contact us for a free quote if you are interested.

  4. Aditya says:

    I needed 1000 unit of enclosure (approx size 100 x 100 x 23 mm, fillet corner radius 20), Finishing should be fine as much as possible. I have seen the mould manufacturing costs a lot, is there any other way to manufacture enclosures at lower cost.

  5. Jason Mayer says:

    I’d be interested in finding out about plastic molded 9mm projectiles. There would have to be a denser plastic chosen, so there is enough recoil generated by the exiting projectile to cycle a semi-automatic pistol reliably.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Jason,

      Thank you for the request for quote, I appreciate the opportunity. I don’t know what that would take. The highest specific gravity for readily available material is around 1.4. I would recommend researching how that compares to what is currently used. I know that some law enforcement agencies are using rubber bullets now but I don’t know if any sort of ejection assistance is used. Please contact us via service@rexplastics.com if you’d like to discuss further.

  6. Aashish Shukla says:

    How much will a mold for HDPE lint roller (less than 70 grm in weight and 2 parts) for approx 500,000
    shots cost?

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Aashish,

      Thank you for the request for quote, I appreciate the opportunity. The best opportunity we have to help make your project a success is if we have as much information as possible. If you could fill out our request for quote form our website it will be a big step in that direction. It includes questions about material, annual estimated production quantities, etc. as well as the option to upload drawings.

      http://rexplastics.com/request-a-quote

  7. School Project says:

    Hi! I’m doing a school project and need soles and heels for a high heel shoe. Do you know how much that might cost?

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      If you would like to send any drawings you have to our contact email directly we can provide an estimate. service@rexplastics.com

  8. Eric says:

    Can you give a quote from a CAD file?

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Eric,

      Yes, we can quote from CAD, here is a list of formats we support:

      .stp
      .step
      .x_t
      .igs
      .mcx
      .sldprt
      .dwg
      .sat

  9. Chris Bonsall says:

    I have an Idea…know nothing about this process, but here it goes. I wan’t to make a tool that will need Insert Molding? I know it’s a pricey operation, but to make it a durable and lasting tool it will have to be. I’d also like to have 6 to 8 tools made per cycle of the mold. the product would only be approx 5 to 6 inches long and 3/4 inch wide and approx 1/4 inch deep (approx). any idea (general idea) what this process would cost? I know there are many more details for plastic and metal applications, but a round about idea for a the mold would be helpful. Thank you.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Chris,
      Thank you for the inquiry, I appreciate the opportunity. Without seeing the geometry it’s difficult to estimate cost. Our pricing guide can give an indication of cost, although it does not giving multi-cavity pricing.

      http://rexplastics.wpengine.com/injection-mold-price-guide

      For more accurate information please fill out our request for quote page and upload any drawings you have.

      http://rexplastics.wpengine.com/request-a-quote

  10. Karie Sta,per says:

    “On the other hand, if you are going to need 100,000 xbox controllers every month, we would build a 12 cavity hardened “family” mold which made four Fronts, four Backs, and four Button Trees every cycle, and you’d better have $60-$80,000 or more to invest.” is the 6o-8o,ooo dollars a yearly investment or a monthly investment?

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      The $60-$80,000 is a non-recurring expense to build the mold. Once the mold was built you would just pay for production parts as need. Probably around $1 per set at that point.

  11. Offer schwarts says:

    Hi, Do you also provide molding with rubber or any other elastic material? Is it (NRE and price per part) usually more or less expensive than plastic ?
    tx, offer

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      We do mold with thermoplastic elastomers, which are still considered a plastic. It is more expensive than a lot of other types, and could add $.50 for a 100 gram part when compared to ABS.

  12. Mike Chang says:

    I’m considering syringe barrels to be injection molded. About 3 mL and 6 mL (two different sizes) with qty of 20,000 per month for now. Actually syringe barrels without the thread, but with luer male at the end. Just empty straight (slightly tapered). Material PP.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Thank you for the inquiry. That does sound like something we can help you with. If you could please fill out our request for quote page on this site we can provide a quote. You can upload drawings there as well.

  13. Afan azmat says:

    I want to buy injections.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Afan,

      Thank you for your interest, do you have drawings or prototypes that we can quote from?

  14. Scott Adams says:

    I’m glad you mentioned having a target price ready before designing a mold. I have a few things I want to start molding, but I hadn’t thought about a price yet. I can see how that would make a big difference in how they would plan how many parts to make.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Scott,

      Thank you for the comment. We would be happy to look at whatever projects you have.

  15. mamawi andrew says:

    Would like to mold adult male lacrosse stick heads, wondering how much each can cost, or how much a plastic injection machine would cost.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Thank you for the inquiry. That does sound like something we can help you with but would need more information. Can you provide drawings or a link to a similar product? If so please send them to service@rexplastics.com

  16. Johnny says:

    Hello,
    When submitting CAD specs to you or any injection mold company, do you recommend a Non-Disclosure Agreement be signed to protect a project?

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Johnny,
      Thank you for the inquiry. Non-disclosure agreements are common in manufacturing so any molder you choose should not resist signing one unless it’s determined to lack certain exclusions and the ability of the molder to disclose information to third parties with written permission. Molders will often need to involve third party companies in order to provide a quote.

    2. Rex Plastics says:

      Bottom line in regards to NDA is whether or not you trust the molder. If they are a legitimate company that has been around for a long time, they’re probably not stealing people’s ideas. If you are naturally a cautious person or something doesn’t seem right with the molder, you’ll feel better having one in place. Hope this helps, let us know if you have and NDA you’d like us to review or if you would like to look at the one we use.

  17. I’m working on a school invention project and I need to know how much a mold for a half-pipe like design would cost. The thickness of the mold needs to be 1.5 inches, it is 1.5 feet high (bottom to top), 5 feet wide (left to right) and is 20 feet long (front to back). If you can estimate the price to the nearest thousand, that would be great. Thank you.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Hunter,
      That product would be too large for us, and would likely need to be extruded. Try searching http://www.thomasnet.com for a large capacity plastic extruder.

  18. I’m working on a school project, I was wondering how much it would cost to make a mold that contains 25 cavities, the part is kind of cylindrical and I was planning to have it made out of high density polyethylene. It has a hole straight through the part with an inside diameter of 0.515″ and an outside diameter of 0.670″ for 0.773″ of the height and an outside diameter of 1.340″ for the remaining 0.327″ of the height, the height is 1.100″ total. This is the link to the photo: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxyuyPDgKAbnMXdHbE1GeTA5bms/view?usp=sharing
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxyuyPDgKAbnN0xMSjJkNzdIUE0/view?usp=sharing

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Thank you for the inquiry. Mold balancing plays an important role in injection molding, because of that we would recommend a 24 cavity mold. The parts are divisible in pairs with that amount and will run much better. The ballpark estimate for a cold runner mold that size would be $15-$20,000, and the part price would be under $.09 each for 20,000 parts ordered.

  19. Kelsey says:

    How much does a customized molder cost that is almost as big as a hand? 🙂

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Kelsey,
      Thanks you for the inquiry. That’s difficult to say without seeing the part. Small details in the design can make big differences in cost to manufacture. If it is a simple design with no undercuts and the surface doesn’t require polishing, you could perhaps get a mold built for $5-$8,000. Here is a link to a pricing guide for further reference. https://rexplastics.com/injection-mold-price-guide

  20. Simon Back says:

    Hi
    I’m trying to get a project started and luckily I found the guides and explanations here, good stuff. With the guide my estimate is somewhere between 15 000 to 30 000.

    What I have is four different geometrical round shapes of varying face counts with some small extruded borders between the faces. They’d be hollow so they’d be cut in a symmetrical manner so that two printed halves can be glued together to form a whole hollow sphere. All spheres are around 7,5 cm in diameter, about 3 inches, and half that in height due to them being halves. Additionally they’d have holes in specific places on the spherical surface but that could be drilled aftetwards, so just some sort of mark where the holes are supposed to be would be sufficient.

    I understand that the small extrustion between the faces of the spheres could be an issue when removing the part from the mold, so they would not be a necessity. The geometrical shapes are just a collection of planar faces which create a sphere.

    What would be the most logical approach if I wanted to create all four?
    All on one mold? Each geometrical type with their own mold?
    Then capacity wise,
    10 000 a year?
    100 000 a year?

    I think I’ve exceeded 30 000 by a factor of 2 already, haven’t I?

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Simon,
      Thank you for your inquiry. It’s difficult to say, but you might be about right. Features that will effect tooling cost are the finish you would like on the parts (polished is more expensive than textured), and where the drilling marks are located. If there are undercuts created by them in relation to the direction the part will need to be ejected out of the mold, moving cores would need to be designed into the molds, which will significantly increase the cost. If these concerns could be worked out, we could probably build two molds to shoot these sets for $30-$60,000. If you would like tighter figures, we would need to see drawings or prototypes. Thanks again for the inquiry.

  21. Adam says:

    Hi,
    Would you be able to create a mold for a golf bag, and provide a quote?
    Approximately 35″ tall, with a diameter of 11.5″ x 10″. I’d also like to include dividers in the middle.
    Thank you.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Unfortunately this product is too large for us. The largest footprint we can mold is approximately 100 square inches, and the tallest piece around 10″.

  22. Vince Giordano says:

    Hello,
    Just so I’m clear, you would charge for the creation of the mold, and then create the parts as needed/requested? You would see me back a finished product correct – as in you supply the materials, ship, etc? Thank you.

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      Yes that is correct. After we build the mold (that you own), we store it here and run parts from it when you send us a PO.

  23. George M. says:

    Hello,
    I have designed a product that I believe the best way to manufacture will be through injection molding. I cannot share too much, but for the sake of this comment lets imagine that it is a hollow box with 1/4″ walls, 1 face missing, and that it is 1′ 8″ W x 1′ 11″ L x 1′ 3″ H.
    Now I understand that pricing is complex so I won’t ask you for a quote without sending the file, and I will assume that the mold will cost no less than $50,000 which is fine. My questions are below:
    – Considering the dimensions of the extents, is it possible to create a family mold with multiple units? What would be the maximum units per mold? And around how many could be banged out per day (again assume its a 1/4″ wall box as stated above for now)?
    – How long does the process of making the mold take (assuming the design and specs are ready)?
    – Do I have to pay the full amount immediately, or can it be paid in installments?
    – If I were to send over a .dwg file for a quote, are you legally bound by confidentiality?
    Thank you in advance!

    1. Rex Plastics says:

      George,
      Thank you for the inquiry. This product is too large for us but I will try to answer your questions.
      -You can have a multiple cavity mold made for this part. If you built a four cavity mold you would need at least a 5,500 ton molding machine (and about $200,000 for a domestically made mold).
      -With that mold you would probably get four parts every 2 or 3 minutes.
      -A single cavity mold would still be over $50,000.
      -Normally toolmakers will ask for 50% down with the remainder due once samples out of the mold are approved.
      -Toolmakers and molder are not bound to confidentiality unless you have them sign a non-disclosure agreement.
      Hopefully this helps, good luck!

  24. Thanks for helping me learn more about plastic injection molds. I didn’t know that molds should be made from harden steel if a product needs a fiberglass filled material. I’m interested to learn how these molds could be made, especially of the steel mold needs to be really precise.

Post a comment