What did society do before plastic? For the most part, many items, including train parts, car parts and plane parts, were made of metal. But today, plastic seems more popular than metal. Why are plastic parts a better option than metal ones? Well, there are several reasons.
Plastic Molds Mean More Efficient Production Runs
In today’s technologically-advanced world, modern industries have detailed and complex parts requiring design flexibility. And guess what? Plastic molds allow for easy inclusion of complex features, thus making for quicker, less expensive production runs. Do you want to make a change to a metal part? It’ll take longer, and cost you more money.
A More Affordable Option
Indeed, money is at the heart of why plastic beats metal in many cases as plastic is cheaper! Sometimes there are metal shortages, for whatever reason, whereas plastic is widely and readily available. When metal prices rise, and they do, you can expect to pay quite a pretty penny for metal parts. So, plastic is generally more cost efficient than metal. For businesses concerned about the bottom line and saving money, this fact makes all the difference, doesn’t it?
Plastic Parts Weigh Less
How about weight differences? Metal is heavier than plastic, so if and when it needs to be shipped, it’s going to cost more money. Also, when companies are looking to make products, such as cars, lighter in order to meet regulatory standards, using plastic parts helps make their products weigh less than if they used metal parts.
But Are Still Strong
Metal is strong, right? But so is plastic! Modern plastics have strength levels comparable to metal materials. Plastic can be strong and rigid, while weighing less than metal counterparts. This is definitely a reason plastic parts are better than metal parts.
Metal to Plastic Conversions
Many industries have made the metal-to-plastic conversion these days, such that more and more things we use everyday have more plastic in them than metal! Take passenger vehicles, for instance. And plastic is popular in airplanes, trains, trucks and other modes of transportation, too.
Why construct items from several metal parts having to weld them together when you can make something all in one plastic piece thanks to a plastic mold? Metal takes effort as well as time and money… while plastic is easier, faster and cheaper. It means reduced assembly costs with components that can be used right out of the mold. Metal parts, on the other hand, have to be ground, smoothed and finished.
There are many material choices when it comes to plastic, compared to metals where selection is more limited. Is it any wonder that engineered plastic materials are popular?
Notable Advantages of Plastic Parts
What are some other advantages of plastic for parts? Well, plastic won’t corrode and it’s less likely to suffer chemical attack. It’s also easier to cut through so parts can be made quickly. With plastic, the painting process is eliminated, and plastic is generally dent resistant, as well. Letters, shapes, and textures can be put into the tooling used to make plastic parts. Plastic makes less noise when it rubs up against other plastic compared to the very noisy metal-on-metal. And plastic often has a longer lifespan than metal.
Are you thinking of switching from metal to plastic parts? The decision depends on your specific application. Think about the kind of weight and strength requirements you need to meet. How many parts do you need? Will your parts be exposed to certain chemicals and/or ultraviolet light? What kind of temperatures will your parts deal with?
Bridgville Plastics of Stevensville, MI, can manufacture your customized or standard plastic products. Call us at 269-465-6516 for more information to learn about our available services. You can also access our contact page, here, to request a quote and/or join our mailing list.
With more than three decades of experience in the plastics and molding industry, Bridgville has the expertise and knowledge that can help you accomplish your goals when it comes to making the switch from metal to plastic parts!