January 4, 2023

How Much does an Injection Mold Cost in China?

P03 2 Customized Mold

What is the injection mold cost?

It is the cost that you pay to design and make an injection mold, above of all, the injection mold is able to run well to mass produce your plastic parts, but this is not enough for a smart injection mold buyer. If you are the one who want to buy plastic injection molds from China, you might be interested to have a general ideas of what is the total cost if you decide to buy from a China injection mold factory, the total cost is a combination of the cost of mold design, material, machining , surface treatment, sampling ,if you do injection molding production somewhere else, there are maybe shipping cost and custom duty involved.

1, Mold design cost

Estimated 10% of the injection mold cost, for an simple part/mold, it takes about 1-2 days for DFM and 2-3 days for 3D mold design, design for some complex and big size injection molds could take weeks to complete, mold design is vital to an injection mold, the design can influences the actual total cost of an injection mold manufacturing in many ways, a great mold designer knows how to save cost and meanwhile maintain the quality to meet demands accurately

2, Material cost

Material takes up 20-30% of the total injection mold cost, it can be break up in several catalogues

  • Mold steel: for an big size mold this part can be major and it could determines how many cycles the mold can stand before you have to stop production and repair the mold, quality of the same steel type( not exactly the same)from differences resources varies, I would not suggest you to compromise on steel quality when it comes to mold cost optimization, so if you get an absolutely cheap quote you better look into what is the resources they will be using.  

Here is the resource ACO MOLD use frequently:

Or go to LKM website: www.lkm.com.cn

  • Mold base: this is low risky part for choosing because mold base steel is usually low grade steel, but for the mold factory a qualified mold base supplier must be low cost, fast delivery, low machining errors
  • Mold Accessories/components such as ejector pins, locks, springs, cooling line connectors, cycle counters, safely switch etc.  
  • EDM electrode : depends on the mold complexity, a simple structure mold may have no requirement of EDM process at all, but a complex design with many thin and deep recess in the mold means a lot of EDM processing,  and graphite electrode or copper electrode
  • Plastic resins:  to verify a new mold there will be 2-3 rounds sampling usually, depends on the plastic part weight and required sampling quantity, certain amount of specified plastic resin material must be prepared in advance.

3, Machining cost

Machining cost make up 20-30% of the total injection mold cost, this is a big part of an injection mold factory competitiveness, major machining process include CNC turning, EDM, wire cut, milling, grinding, drilling etc , many factors influence the machining cost ,the truth is it is not easy to maintain low cost while high quality, high quality means , besides excellent operation, continuous investments on machineries and well trained employees that is all costly,

4, Surface treatment

Normal surface treatment such polish to SPI-SPE B /C standard and standardized EDM texture won’t cost much, but mirror polish or special texture can be costly depends on specific demands.

5, Sampling cost

It takes 3-5% of the total mold cost, usually it takes 2-3 rounds sampling for a new injection mold, this cost is highly related with mold design, machining, assembly fitting that happened in last stage, so a good mold factory have the capability to minimize the times of sampling and cost come with it

6, Shipping cost

If you look for doing injection mold at one place and molding production at another, then you must consider the shipping cost and custom duty when it come across the border.

  • Air shipping: 6-8 USD per KG, propose go Express delivery for goods less than 300KG, heavier than that air freight is lower cost
  • Sea freight: start at 700 USD estimated, good choice for high volume goods.
  • Train freight: start at 600 USD estimated, faster than sea freight but sometimes it is unstable

Above is base on door to door service, propose to use one shipping agent to do for all instead of 2 or more for one shipment. 

7, Duty

Different places have different tax policies. I am not quite sure about this part, l think a local shipping agent can give you some professional advices.

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