Vacuum Molding

Vacuum molding for low volume or short-run manufacturing can be a useful tool for making high-quality plastic constituents. Vacuum molding is a process where thermoplastic materials are heated and formed into 3D shapes. The molding happens when vacuum pressure sucks the warmed plastic sheet materials over or into a mold, that regulates the size and shape of the finished plastic component or part.

Significant Benefits

There are various significant benefits linked to low volume manufacturing or vacuum molding. For instance, the cost of tooling is substantially less as opposed to other processes. Besides this, the turnaround time is much quicker. Due to the cost savings and the quick turnaround time, vacuum molding is often preferential for prototyping, R&D, and in some cases, long-term production. This can be a valuable tool when it comes to the technique used by plastic prototype providers when producing prototypes. When efficiently applied, vacuum molded products can offer quality in function and appearance. You can order the sheet metal in color and with textures or grain applied on the show side of the piece. This could give the part a more high quality and expensive look. You can view here to learn more about vacuum molding.

Additional Advantages Linked With Vacuum Molding For Short Runs Include:

  • Quicker production speeds as opposed to other fabricated assemblies
  • Lower equipment costs for more significant parts since large parts don’t necessitate high tonnage presses, as would be the case for injection molding.
  • Highly detailed molded products can be made in various sizes.
  • Adaptive to the client’s requirements and can be optimized for appearance and material.
  • Bendable tooling design.
  • Visually appealing
  • Fast changes with minimum added tool change fees
  • Weight savings are possible for low volume consumers and manufacturers through the conversion of sheet metal fabrications into single molded plastic components.
  • Available in textured, colored and paintable plastics
  • More straightforward production than a comparable sheet metal fabrication
  • Anti-corrosion spray is not necessary.

Main Applications

Products produced with vacuum molding for low volume manufacturing are frequently used as a substitute for complex-shaped components that are constructed from fabricated sheet metal. This is seen mainly in air distribution systems and ducting. Fabricated sheet metal products often necessitate comprehensive operations that include grinding, welding, and finishing. Likewise, in comparison with alternative plastic forming operations like fiber-reinforced plastic molding and resin transfer, vacuum molded parts are often preferred due to more advanced economics and cosmetics. This is why numerous low volume manufacturer’s opt for this option.

Product vacuum molding utilized for low volume manufacturing is excellent for many applications. Some examples include these:

  • Consumer products
  • Electronics
  • Packaging
  • Industrial
  • Automotive
  • Healthcare and medical
  • Construction
  • Retail
  • ATMs
  • Ralicars
  • Outdoor kiosks
  • Displays


As seen in the information shared above, there are numerous advantages associated with vacuum molding for low volume manufacturing. Many plastics parts used throughout many different industries and applications can be seen in products and items that are used in our day to day lives.