Manufacturing Parts With Silicone Rubber: What to Look for and What to Avoid

Silicone rubber is used to manufacture a number of different items, including irrigation and filtration components, seals and gaskets, lighted buttons, overmolded parts, and more. It is prized for its high thermal stability, durable mechanical properties, UV resistance and other characteristics. If you’re considering using silicone for your next custom rubber molding project, there are a few things to consider when choosing a vendor.

Your Choice of Vendor Is Key

Whom you choose as a partner will determine how much you benefit from the many advantages silicone rubber can bring to your manufacturing process. Look for a vendor that:

  • Takes the time to understand your application
  • Can handle the technical requirements of your project
  • Has experience manufacturing custom silicone rubber parts

Silicone rubber is highly versatile and can be used in many different industries and applications. A good vendor partner will work with you to develop innovative solutions to your manufacturing challenges.

What to Ask a Prospective Partner

Knowing what to ask is the most important thing when vetting a custom silicone rubber parts manufacturer. Be sure to find out:

  • What kind of equipment they have, when it was last updated, and whether or not it is capable of meeting your needs
  • What experience they have with custom silicone rubber parts, and what specific expertise they will bring to your project
  • What their production capabilities are, and what their anticipated timeframe will be for turning around your project

Remember, silicone rubber is a dynamic material, one that offers a range of potential design possibilities. Choosing to work with a vendor that doesn’t understand this fully, or isn’t equipped to make the most of it, will lead only to lost time and money.

Does Price Matter?

Custom silicone rubber products are generally more expensive to manufacture than those using other materials. However, the higher initial cost is offset by improved overall quality, greater versatility, and less potential for failure.

When choosing a vendor, don’t let a higher price scare you off — often, a lower quote demonstrates only that a potential partner doesn’t fully understand the realities of working with silicone rubber. Instead, look for a vendor with experience, expertise, and up-to-date manufacturing equipment.

To learn more or request a quote, contact SIMTEC today.

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