What are the advantages of working with Protoshop over other prototype mold fabrication and molding services?

Our primary advantages are:

  1. Superior mold quality. Our prototype molds are temperature controlled and we use steel for all stressed portions of the mold in order to more closely replicate production molding quality.
  2. Moldability design review. Let our experts help ensure your project is a success.
  3. No geometry limitations. If you’ve been rejected from other molders or been told that it’s not possible then give us a try. We’re experienced at stretching the limits of molding and we’re not afraid of a challenge.
  4. Rapid mold iterations. Our background is product development so we know the importance of mold iterations. Our molds are intended to be iterated quickly, typically in 1-2 days.

What are Protoshop’s dimensional constraints for molding?

Protoshop can currently mold parts up to 8” x 6” x 6” with a volume up to 6 oz.

How long does it take to receive a quote?

Our goal is to provide a quote within 4 hours.

How long does it typically take for Protoshop to complete prototype molds?

It typically takes 3-5 days for us to design and fabricate a mold. More complex molds will require additional time, of course. It then takes one day for setting the molding process, molding first article parts, and measuring critical dimensions.

Once I have a mold fabricated and place a request for molded parts, how long does it take to mold parts?

Our goal is to mold parts within 24 hours of receiving a molding request.

How many parts can be molded from a single cavity prototype mold per day?

We can typically mold 500-600 ea parts per day or 2,500 – 3,000 ea per week, depending on the cycle time of the mold.

What is the typical tolerance that your prototype molds can hold?

That is a complex question that is depends on the size of the feature being measured and the material used. Assuming using a semi-crystalline material and a molded part less than 6”, our goal is for all features to be within 0.004” (0.1 mm). Larger parts would require a large tolerance. Assuming a semi-crystalline material and a molded part less than 2”, our goal is for all features to be within 0.002” (0.05 mm).

What is the typical repeatability of your prototype molds?

There are several factors that allow us to have very consistent repeatability:

  1. These are single cavity prototype molds, there are no issues of consistency across multiple cavities.
  2. Our molds are temperature controlled like production molds which improves repeatability.
  3. We mold parts in an environmentally controlled room which significantly improves repeatability.
  4. We only use Arburg molding machines which are very high quality machines capable of very consistent molding cycles.

Repeatability is therefore typically within 0.001”. If a certain dimension needs to hold a tolerance of 0.001”, we can modify the mold for any critical feature to nominal and hold a very tight 0.001” tolerance as needed.

When is the best time to use prototype injection molded parts in product development?

We have a background in product development so we know better than most about when prototype molding should be used. Before starting prototype molding rapid prototypes such as SLA should be used due to the quick iteration and low cost. Ideally 80-90% of mechanical function can be demonstrated using rapid prototypes before proceeding with prototype molding. However, there are times when rapid prototypes do not adequately replicate the mechanical performance of molded parts and it is necessary to proceed directly to prototype molds.

What are the benefits of using prototype injection molded parts in product development?

Rapid prototypes and machined parts are an invaluable part of the product development process, but have the drawback that they do not fully replicate the mechanical properties of injection molded parts due to material limitations. By fabricating prototype molds, issues can be identified early in the product development process and resolved well before product release. Often, fabricating a prototype mold can be just as fast with similar cost as rapid prototypes or machined parts but with superior testing capability.

Is an NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement required?

It’s not required but recommended if your part is proprietary. We are happy to sign your NDA or we have a NDA template we can offer.

Does Protoshop offer inspection services?

Yes, we always inspect first articles and each molding order per our normal procedure that ensure we only ship quality product but we are happy to increase the number of dimensions inspected or the number of parts to meet your needs.

Can Protoshop help me to create a drawing?

Yes, we’ll schedule a quick phone call where we will ask you to define which features are critical for inspection and the tolerance that should be applied to each one.

What is the maximum and minimum molding order quantity?

There is no minimum order quantity but it generally makes financial sense to mold at least 100 ea parts due to the time it takes to setup the mold.

The maximum quantity is determined by the quantity of parts that can be molded per hour.  Single cavity prototype molds typically yield 30-60 parts per hour depending on part complexity.  Protoshop runs two shifts per day so the maximum part yield would be on the order of 2,400 – 4,800 ea per week.

Do you provide a sample after mold fabrication is completed?

Protoshop’s mold fabrication quote includes a sampling of 25 ea parts. From those parts, 3 ea are selected at random and 3 ea dimensions are inspected to confirm part accuracy. The 3 parts/3 dimension inspection is standard and provided free of charge. Optionally, additional parts and/or dimensions may be requested during quoting.

Based on 7 reviews
Dana Taylor
Dana Taylor
If you're in need of a molding prototype shop, Dylann and Jimmy at Protoshop are sure to not only meet but exceed your expectations. Their team demonstrates remarkable responsiveness and proactiveness, contributing to an exceptionally efficient overall process. The speed at which they deliver top-notch work is truly impressive. Protoshop's commitment to customer satisfaction is apparent in their flexibility and willingness to closely collaborate with clients to address specific needs. An exemplary instance of this was their accommodation of our request to have our customer onsite for part evaluation and mold changes while we were present. What sets Protoshop apart is not solely their technical proficiency but also their dedication to providing valuable insights and design advice. Their expertise extends beyond standard projects, showcasing proficiency in handling complex components for diverse applications, be it over-molded sealing parts or flexible components. In conclusion, if you're on the lookout for a reliable and efficient partner for your manufacturing and molding requirements, I wholeheartedly recommend Protoshop. Their combination of expertise, responsiveness, and commitment to customer satisfaction makes them an exceptional choice for a variety of projects.
Brittany Mason
Brittany Mason
I have worked with Photoshop on several mold designs over the past year. From the moment I reached out to them with an inquiry, they were prompt in their communication and eager to assist me. I have greatly appreciated and benefited from their extensive expertise and prompt feedback. They consistently offering valuable suggestions and insights that ultimately saved us money in the overall design. As for the quality of work they provided, Dylann and her team have always come through. If any issues do arise, they have been quick to offer solutions and kept us up to date throughout the whole process. If you're looking for a reliable partner for your plastics molding needs, I would check them out.
Stacie Depner
Stacie Depner
Having worked with Dylann and Jimmy prior to Protoshop, I knew the immense level of expertise they have for this business and it proved to carry through. They are honest straight shooters that will help guide you and find the best solution for your molds. We needed a mild that could be versatile and allow us to easily change out one side of the design. Dylann helped us come up with an approach that will allow us to continuously iteration the design without having to make a whole new mold every time.
Chad Follmar
Chad Follmar
Dylann and team are wonderful to work with. On multiple programs, they have delivered quality product in a matter of days. The design for moldability support is unparalled to ensure your part is ready to order.
Garrett Garner
Garrett Garner
We work regularly with Protoshop on a variety of complex components for various projects. They are an excellent company to work with providing a vast history of experience to help their clients optimize designs. We have worked with them on microfluidic chips with small feature sizes, over molded sealing parts and flexible parts. They have experience working with many materials including Topas (COC), polycarbonate, TPE, PE, and PP. I would highly recommend reaching out on your next project. The team is very responsive to design changes as well as delivering to tight timelines. They also offer design advice and best practices which have helped expedite design iterations.
Steven Soeder
Steven Soeder
Great experience with Protoshop. Dylann is extremely responsive and great to work with. Very fast turn-around. Worked with us on our order to get what we needed. I was able to drop ship 3d printed parts from another vendor to Protoshop to have them match-fit and incorporated into our tooling. I will be back again.
Wendell Woidyla
Wendell Woidyla
Dylann at Protoshop is excellent to work with: highly responsive and proactive. This is possibly the fastest, high-quality work I have ever witnessed. 1 week...from payment (start) to delivery (after CTQ measurements at Protoshop), we had 100 test samples of a component we intend to use in high volume manufacturing. Thank you for the tremendous work! I would highly recommend Protoshop, and will plan to use Protoshop services in the future.