Cheap and Inexpensive molds
There is a difference between “cheap” and “inexpensive”, you need to compare apples to apples. High precision, tight tolerance and high cavitation injection molds can contain hundreds if not thousands of man hours to produce. If you insist on the same materials and components from all available sources, the material cost will be virtually the same. If you insist on the same mold standards and the same specifications, all sources should be equal. Some locations you can get a good break on hourly machine rates due to local government subsidies on machine purchases. Some locations you get a tremendous break on labor costs per hour which can run into the tens of thousands of Euros per mold. Some locations you have factories that work 24 hrs. 7 days by week, which can shave many weeks off your time to first parts.
You don’t need to be “cheap” to get “inexpensive”. You just need to be careful and put your eye on the process as it is progressing.
There are injection mold shops that make garbage worldwide, it’s not country dependent. I have mold shops near my home here in Portugal that I trust much less than those I have worked with in Asia. Same goes for the US, garbage in– garbage out.
Buyer and supplier always hunting each other, there is always a good mold supplier with reasonable price somewhere, that’s why we need to do more sourcing and survey, nothing is VERY cheap and VERY good, only reasonable price, a number accepted by the mold buyer and supplier both party. Take it, leave it or go somewhere else.
You need to watch what you get and follow up with what you ask for. That is what we do at Aco Mold, we have such a large group of experienced staff here stateside to manage your tooling and molding projects so that you are getting what you expect. It can be difficult at times but we travel there and build relationships to better the outcome for your companies.