Benefits and Limitations of Plastics Over Metals

We can expect 25 to 30% cost saving with metal-to-plastic conversion. With high strength, consistent reliability and the ability to achieve tight tolerances as metal, plastic parts offer various benefits across all types of industries. In this article we will discuss advantages and limitations of plastics compared to metals.

Advantages of Plastics over Metal

  • Plastics has higher strength to weight ratio.
  • Reduced manufacturing costs for high production rate.
  • Superior design flexibility.
  • Increased corrosion resistance.
  • Consolidation of multiple metal parts into a single plastic part.
  • High toughness compared to metal parts.
  • Tight tolerances can be achieved with good mold design and process control.
  • Plastic parts require fewer secondary operations thereby saving on time and costs.
  • Reduce the number of fasteners required to assemble parts.
  • Reduced waste / production scrap.
  • Easy adherence to various regulatory compliance.
  • Lower packaging and shipping costs.
  • Thermoplastics are recyclable.

Disadvantages of Plastics over Metal

  • Initial tool cost for plastic parts is very high.
  • Plastics offer less wear resistance compared to metals
  • Metals are more heat resistant compared to plastics.
  • Plastics are less thermally and electrically conductive.
  • Difficult to control plastic manufacturing process
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