What happens when your production run never surpasses a couple hundred parts, or you need intensive product testing? Do you spend the tens of thousands of dollars on a hard tool, do you wait the several weeks lead time until you can hold a part in your hand? In an ideal world, you would lower cost and lead time without sacrificing part quality; in this world, silicone tooling is an ideal solution. Cast urethane out of silicone rubber tools is the most cost effective, quick turnaround process. Cast urethane is produced with nearly endless possibilities of durometer, color, texture, inserts, etc. As soon as your 3D design is ready, a mold can be made in days. The entire production run can be completed in the time it would take to get a metal tool completed for injection molding.
Silicone tooling, like all tooling, has a finite number of parts it can produce before a tool starts to deteriorate. This is why IMPM has never stopped managing tool quality to ensure longer lifespans from our silicone tools. We GUARANTEE 100 shots out of our silicone tools. Since cast urethane is a manual labor process, every single part receives quality inspection. This means that you pay a fraction of the tooling cost that you would for a metal tool, shorten your lead time, and have production quality parts. An ideal solution.