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Rapid Tooling Mold Material: Aluminum or Steel?

Release time:2024-03-18

Rapid Tooling Mold Material: Aluminum or Steel?

  • Aluminum Mold Tooling

    Aluminum Mold Tooling

    An ideal choice for prototyping, aluminum' target='_blank'>mold tooling provides a cost-effective way to produce' target='_blank'>molded parts. Since they are easy to cut, aluminum molds can reduce tooling costs by 15–25% compared to other mold materials and reduce cycle times by up to 40%. This translates to a faster turnaround for our customers.But it is important to note that aluminum is not as strong as steel, so it has a shorter life cycle and is less useful in high-volume processes.

  • Steel Mold Tooling

    Steel Mold Tooling

    We usual uses P20 steel for rapid production tooling. We do this because P20 steel is as easy and fast to the machine as aluminum, using standard cutting tools and requiring no post-machining heat treatment. Such tools are called ‘semi-hardened’. It produces an excellent surface finish, and the raw material isn’t as prone to supply disruptions. Most importantly, it’s much more durable, making a better tool that can produce more finished parts. We believe there are no practical advantages to using aluminum over steel.

Rapid Injection Molding Materials

Generally speaking, the plastics which can be used for production injection molding, they can be molded by rapid molding as well. Here are the most commonly molded plastics. If the material is not listed, please contact our team for more information.

Besides of regular production molding, we have over 10 injection molding machines ready for prototype or small quantities molding. The molds will be loaded to the machines right away without delay.


  • Why should I use rapid tooling?

    Rapid tooling is a fast and cost-efficient way to create a few prototypes in a selected material for function and aspect testing, as well as for low-volume manufacturing to test out the market.

  • How fast can I get the moldings?

    This depends on the size and geometry of the parts. For a common open and shut mold with regular size part such as 300 x 300 x 50 mm, fabrication of tools and moldings can be done within 10 days.

  • What materials can I choose from with rapid tooling?

    There is no limit to material choice. Any plastics available for mass production, including common silicone and rubber materials, can also be used with the rapid tooling process.

  • What is the quality level of rapid tooling?

    Moldings from rapid tooling are end-use-parts quality. They are very close to mass production parts.

  • How many moldings can I get from rapid tooling?

    Normally, aluminum molds are good enough for +/- 1,000 shots, while Steel P20 molds can last for +/- 10,000 shots.

      • ABS








      • PEEK



        PMMA (Acrylic)







      • Standard silicone

        Fluoro silicone (fuel and oil resistant)

        Medical-grade silicone

        Optical-grade silicone

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