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Manufacturing Services

Metal Injection Molding

Having served the OEM market for many years, Modern Orthodontics is a leading manufacturer of MIM-manufactured parts. Some of the world's most prestigious OEM companies have selected Modern Orthodontics as their manufacturing partner.

 

Modern Orthodontics's skilled team of manufacturing specialists is here to serve you. By partnering with us you'll have access to our expert engineering and design assistance, giving you the peace of mind that your job will be done right at a price you can afford. Our lead times, which are among the shortest in the industry, will ensure that your project is turned around as quickly as possible.

Our experience will benefit you through higher quality parts that are produced on time. We operate under a single tier management system that allows us to provide our customers with lightning quick response to their needs.

Many of our customers have moved their tooling to Modern Orthodontics from other foundries after experiencing quality or delivery problems. You as well are invited to take advantage of our expertise, without hidden adaptation costs. Our reputation is built upon a foundation of commitment to quality, unparalleled service, and on-time delivery.

What is Metal Injection Molding?

 

The MIM process consists of mixing fine metal powders with thermoplastic binders to form a feedstock which is injection molded into a closed mold. After ejection from the mold, the thermoplastic "binders" are chemically or thermally removed from the part so that the part can be sintered to high density. During the sintering process, the individual particles metallurgically bond together as material diffusion occurs to remove most of the porosity left by the removal of the binder. The sintering process shrinks the part, providing a net shape that can be used as-is or further worked to add additional features or improve tolerances. The result is a near full density, high strength metal component.

Benefits of the Metal Injection Molding Process:

MIM offers mechanical properties that exceed those available with plastic injection molded or die cast materials. Metal Injection Molding also provides a cost-effective, automated alternative to the labor-intensive investment casting process. With the ability to produce highly complex geometries, MIM is an effective alternative to complex machined components or intricate assemblies.

Metal Injection Molding is especially effective at producing small, complex components that require thin, uniform cross sections (up to .250 inch). Thicker sections are typically limited factors that include the high cost of the raw material, the difficulties involved in molding defect-free thick sections, and the ability to remove the binders effectively from the molded parts.

The economics of the MIM process favors higher annual part volumes, making it the perfect choice for orthodontic manufacturing. Although MIM can be a cost-effective solution for small, complex parts at lower volumes, the cost of molding tools discourages lower volume applications.

To ensure that the full benefits of the Metal Injection Molding process are best realized, we considers the MIM manufacturing process during the initial design stage of the product.

The primary benefits of the MIM manufacturing process include:

  • Design Flexibility - By offering design flexibility similar to plastic injection molding, MIM enables the production of geometrically complex parts that cannot be produced using the conventional powder metal processes without secondary machining.
  • Intricate Details - MIM technology allows for intricate features such as dovetails, slots, undercuts, threads, and complex curved surfaces. MIM can also produce cylindrical parts with greater length-to-diameter ratios.
  • Reduced Assemblies - To minimize assembly costs, the MIM process can be used to combine two or more simpler shapes into a single, more complex component.
  • Reduced Waste/Machining - MIM's capability to provide net shape components eliminates many secondary machining operations.

Process of Metal Injection Molding (MIM)

The MIM process includes the following steps:
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