Advanced Plastiforms, Inc partners with a wide variety of companies in the automotive industry, from vehicle manufacturers to independent parts suppliers, across the Southeastern United States. We proudly provide safe, durable plastic components that we manufacture using cutting-edge thermoforming and injection molding techniques.
Custom Automotive Thermoforming
Thermoforming is the act of heating a single plastic sheet until it is hot enough to form into a mold or tool. To ensure the most accurate shape, the plastic sheet is either vacuum sealed into the mold to form a tight fit or heavy air pressure pushes against the plastic to press it into the mold. This technique is used for larger automotive parts and components that measure over four feet wide or long.
Commonly thermoformed automotive parts include:
- Center consoles
- Interior door panels
- Truck bed liners
- Shaped tub for trunks
- Bumper fascias
Benefits of Automotive Thermoforming
Using thermoforming to manufacture automotive parts has two major benefits for our customers – time and cost.
- Time: We design and develop an aluminum 3D mold at the same time we are creating the plastic sheets to be formed. Once everything is ready, we can begin the tooling process which includes molding and forming the components, followed by trimming, applying paint or silk-screening, or coating them as necessary. The process takes around 14 weeks from designing to shipping out for delivery.
- Cost: Thermoforming is a relatively inexpensive method to mold plastic components due to the relatively low cost of tooling, especially for annual orders of 3,000 pieces or less.
Custom Automotive Injection Molding
For the smaller parts and components, or pieces that require varied thickness or detailing, we use injection molding to guarantee safety, quality, and durability. We heat plastic pellets to their melting point and use a high-pressure injection method to force the plastic into a double-sided, 3D mold made of aluminum, steel, or a copper alloy. This ensures that the plastic is fitted perfectly into the mold, allowing a uniformity and accuracy to each component. This technique is suited for smaller products and parts.
Commonly injection molded automotive parts include:
- Side steps
- Radio and air conditioning knobs and dials
- Under-the-hood parts and components
Benefits of Automotive Injection Molding
Because injection molding is much more specific regarding size and design, it has a longer lead time than thermoforming, usually 16 to 20 weeks rather than 14 weeks. However, the main benefits are quantity cost and precision.
- Cost: While thermoforming is inexpensive for pieces less than 3,000, with injection molding, it’s cost-effective to use injection molding for large annual orders. The cost to design and develop the injection tool and mold is more expensive, but once we have them, we don’t need to recreate them. If you need multiple large orders or ongoing pieces, this will save you money over thermoforming.
- Precision: For smaller, intricate pieces, injection molding allows us to create the exact shape you need for your car parts or pieces. Whether we need to vary the thickness, such as to create a ridged pattern, or we need multiple sides, this method allows us to create the most precise piece and recreate it identically thousands of times over as needed.
Your Automotive Thermoforming & Injection Molding Experts
If you are seeking high-quality, long-lasting plastic products and components for cars, trucks, and other vehicles, reach out to Advanced Plastiform, Inc. Our team of experts is available to help you create the perfect pieces for your vehicle or vehicle parts that add safety, value, and durability to vehicles. We proudly serve seven states, including North Carolina, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Tennessee, Georgia, and Virginia.