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What is Metal Injection Molding (MIM)?

Posted on Apr 03, 2020 by Cullen Hikene

Metal injection molding (MIM) is a metalworking process in which finely-powdered metal is mixed with binder material to create a “feedstock” that is then shaped and solidified using injection molding. The molding process allows high volume, complex parts to be shaped in a single step.

3Diligent illustrated processes: metal injection molding

What are the Different Types of Metal Injection Molding?

  1. Metal Injection Molding (MIM)

What are the Advantages of Metal Injection Molding?

  • High-Volume of Parts. Quantities in the 1000s will be cost-effective.
  • Complexity. Complex metal designs are feasible with metal injection molding when compared with, for instance, machining.
  • Strong Material Characteristics. Parts material properties equivalent or superior to cast alloys.

What are the Limitations of Metal Injection Molding?

  • Post-Processing Steps Required. Such as de-binding and sintering.
  • Small Parts. The process is limited to small-sized metal parts.
  • Expensive Tooling. Required for large production runs.

 

Key Metrics

Standard Tolerance
+/- .003″ (.080 mm)

Typical Surface Finish
~ 1.6um

Maximum Quantity
Per tooling quantity exceeds 10,000/year

Minimum Wall Thickness
~0.1″

Conclusion

Metal injection molding (MIM) is an emerging technology in the IM space gaining popularity due to its high-speed creation of metal parts, previously unavailable through standard IM avenues like plastic injection molding (PIM.) Consider submitting an RFQ through manufacturing services such as ProdEX to get started today.

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