A Brief History of Plastic Injection Molding

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Modern society has come a long way with electronic machines and automobiles. However, these things might not have existed if they weren’t for some manufacturing processes like plastic injection molding. The proper use of plastics’ versatile qualities enabled past scientists to develop inventions in a very cost-effective way. Here’s a brief look at where this plastic molding technique started and how it evolved over the year


The first-ever injection molding machine was invented in 1872 by Isaiah and John Hyatt. The machine’s function was simple and operated to mold combs, buttons, and other simple plastic items. However, the material used was flammable and very difficult to work with. Though, in 1903 a couple of German scientists created a less flammable and soluble form of cellulose acetate, which was the first new change to the process.

The 1930s and the World Wars

The world wars were a tough time for the whole world. However, it was a time that many industries made significant advancements, such as airplane production, automotive technology, and war manufacturing. But advancement in these industries resulted in key materials like metal and rubber getting scarce.

Plastics became the prime alternative to these materials resulting in an exponential growth in the industry post World War II. Many companies were starting to source fully customizable materials like plastics that could be easily molded into custom plastic parts. This was when injection plastic molding started gaining more attention.

Post World Wars and the Current State

Different colored plastic containers

The next development in the plastic injection molding technique was astronomical as the American Inventor James Watson Hendry made the extrusion screw injection machine. This enabled a greater control on the molding process resulting in higher quality plastic parts.

However, this was followed by a more significant addition to the molding technique, which added gas to the process. This addition made history as the process now enabled him to make complex plastic products in different shapes and sizes, and most importantly, the introduction of hollow plastic products.

The continuous additions to the industry made plastics the most used material in almost every industry globally. Its usage has been unmatched during the 21st century, with people looking to find more environmentally friendly options of making them.

If you’re looking for a company that provides custom injection molding to their clients, we at Connekt LLC offer those services. We are a mechanical design services company that offers services like 3D printing, rapid prototyping, and FEA consulting. So, if you’re looking to get an estimate for our services, contact us.

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