Reel-to-Reel Molding

Reel-to-reel molded drug inhaler component part.

Reel-to-Reel Molding

Specialized molding and assembly processes assist businesses in achieving precise results in industries such as medical, aerospace, technology, and general manufacturing. Complexity and attention to detail are required in multi-material molding and assembly processes.

One of the most intriguing modern solutions for complex assembly is reel-to-reel molding, also known as strip molding.

Reel to reelIMG_1607 Final

What is Reel-to-Reel Molding?

Reel-to-reel molding uses two reels: a feed reel that dispenses insert material and a take-up reel that receives the finished product. A continuous carrier strip is fed from one reel to the next. Plastic is molded over each individual piece or part as it is fed from the initial reel to the final reel during the injection molding process.

Continuous carrier strips can be made of a variety of materials. Metal stamping is sometimes used to assist in the creation of the carrier substance. In other cases, assembly companies may use mylar tape or other media for a continuous carrier strip. A molded strip can also be used.

This process aids in the production of parts that are consistently crafted and bulk-assembled for precision. Experts in the field have discovered how the reel-to-reel method transforms assembly from a traditional "loose-parts basis" to a process guided by the two reels for greater precision and predictability. This is critical for projects that require high standards and will benefit from the new processes.

Benefits of Reel-to-Reel Molding

One of the advantages of using a reel-to-reel molding process is that individual pieces can be precisely aligned and oriented. Because the pieces are tethered to the reel, they are packaged and structured in such a way that better secondary processes can be facilitated. These pieces can be delivered in the take-up reel in a way that allows for simple final assembly. A reel-to-reel molding process expands what companies can do with linear production by allowing for processes such as in-line stamping. The use of reel-to-reel molding can result in lower mold maintenance costs and less process error. This method is useful for producing OEM or high-design parts for specific industry applications.

This process aids in the production of parts that are consistently crafted and bulk-assembled for precision. Experts in the field have discovered how the reel-to-reel method transforms assembly from a traditional "loose-parts basis" to a process guided by the two reels for greater precision and predictability. This is critical for projects that require high standards and will benefit from the new processes.

Standards of Reel-to-Reel Molding

Reel to reel molding, like other types of injection molding and assembly processes, benefits from some general industry standards.

Processes like these may benefit from inspection standards, which provide rules for identifying defects and confirming the integrity of finished products in addition to build standards.

Some ISO standards may apply to the inspection process itself; the best metal stamping and reel-to-reel molding companies understand these key standards and how to make their operations compliant through best practices. Although reel to reel molding adds functionality, these processes must still be precision-tested.

 

Weiss-Aug is a well-known crafting, molding, and custom assembly company with a proven track record of success. This industry leader manufactures custom parts for clients in the aerospace, defense, automotive, and medical industries, consistently producing high-quality results.

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“Today through use of innovative lean manufacturing techniques, expansive engineered processes and a strict adherence to the highest quality and safety standards, our stamping plant has successfully produced recent multi-year PPM ratings of less than one. Our stamping philosophies have also earned us high supplier ratings with both automotive and medical customers and continuous positive auditing scores from yearly ISO 9001:2008, TS 16949-2009, ISO 13485:2003 and ISO 14001:2004 audits.”

— Dieter Weissenrieder, CEO and Founder