One of the most efficient and cost-effective ways of decorating a part is to do it during the molding cycle. In-Mold Decorating (IMD) or In-Mold Labeling (IML) can provide several important advantages over other decoration methods.
With IMD or IML, appearance can be easily changed in one mold. Multiple colors, effects and textures can be achieved by simply changing the film or screen-printed appliqué. The result is a seamless transition, eliminating the grunge line between the appliqué and molded substrate. In addition, the graphic image is encapsulated between the film and the resin. Second-surface graphics cannot be removed without destroying the part.
The process is also environmentally friendly, eliminating the need for adhesives. So there is no adhesive fogging or any of the typical problems associated with pressure-sensitive adhesives. Finally, IMD and IML produces efficiency gains through reduced secondary operations, elimination of adhesive costs and process, lower system costs in many applications, and reduced inventory levels.