Fading molded texture

Wondering if anyone out there has experience with fading one texture into another in a molded plastic part (or if it’s even possible.) I’m trying to see if it’s doable to have a single piece with say a sandblast texture in one area and a polished texture in another without a defined line separating the two. Any input is appreciated.

Is it possible yes, but be prepared for substantial headaches.

It is possible to texture a tool and then polish part of it out, but keep in mind that it is a hand process. You’re asking the texture house to take the tool and by hand polish out the area and do so in a way that is going to be consistent and not polish out part of the texture on another area of the tool. Most texture houses will be resistant to doing it because they know how high the potential risk is for accidentally buffing too far.

If you want an abrupt transition they can do it by masking, but you will still have issues with keeping the line perfect and how to define that line in 3D since there is nothing in the part. Usually they’ll ask for a small step (.25) to at least give them some guideline in the steel where the transition needs to occur.

As a general experience from my end, the fancier you try to get with in mold texturing the more you need to be prepared to risk damaging the tool, over polishing or washing out definition of features in the mold, and a few trips to China (or wherever your mold is).

Stepping the surfaces that receive different textures makes it bearable for the mold shops.

We’ve had reps from Mold Tech into the office before and they’ve shown us some really cool samples of textures that fade into one another that were even more complicated than what you’re describing. Part of it is going to depend on who is doing the tooling and whether or not they want the expense & complexity of Mold Tech doing custom textures for them.

And whether or not you specify Mold tech and your tooling vendor takes it to some other shop without telling you.

Mold Tech also has different offices depending on the country you are doing it in. I’m sure if you compared MT Germany to MT China you’d be frightened at the results.

Thanks for the help, everyone. That was kind of what I figured but was holding out hope for a technique I wasn’t aware of.

It is not very difficult,for example you can make embedded parst in your tooling ,the different parts have different finish surface,they can assembly together,so your palstic part different area will have texture and polish.