In order to ensure that you are able to get the most out of the information on this site, we’ve created a glossary of terms that are used commonly in our industry. If there are additional terms that need to be defined, please let us know!
Casting, as it relates to manufacturing, is a process wherein a liquid material is poured into a mold which is in the desired shape of the object. The liquid is then allowed to become solidified. The solid form becomes the cast after being ejected from the mold. Cookware is a common example of the type of product that is made using a casting technique.1
CNC Machining refers to the automation of machine tools that are operated by precisely programmed commands encoded on a storage medium, as opposed to controlled manually via hand wheels or levers, or mechanically automated via cams alone.2
Milling refers to the machining process of using rotary cutters in order to remove materials. CNC Milling simply refers to the milling process in the context of a computer numerical control (CNC) system.3
Turning is a machining process where a cutting tool describes a path by moving linerarly while the workpiece rotates. Again, the ‘CNC’ indicates the turning process being referred to is in a computer numerical control (CNC) system.4
When we discuss confidentiality on this site, we are using the term to describe one point of our 5 Point Guarantee; we will keep your product/business confidential, presenting it only as necessary to secure a quote.
Customs brokers are the professionals who we partner with to help clear your goods and products through international customs barriers. This process involves the preparation of documents, calculation of payments (taxes, duties, etc.) and facilitating communication between government personnel and importers/exporters. Our nationwide network of customs brokers is one of the 14 reasons that you should work with us!5
When we make reference to the domestic costs of goods, we are referring to what those goods would cost to purchase or manufacture in the United States.
When we reference “EDM” we are talking about electric discharge machining. This is a manufacturing process whereby a desired shape is obtained using electrical discharges (sparks). EDM is also referred to as spark machining, spark eroding, burning, die sinking or wire erosion.6
In the context of this site, exporting refers to the process of sending goods to another country to be sold.
Forging is a manufacturing process involving the shaping of metal using localized compressive forces, and is often classified according to the temperature at which it is performed: “cold”, “warm”, or “hot” forging. Forging has become a world-wide industry which has contributed substantially to human development.7
In the context of this site, importing refers to the process of bringing goods to the United States, across a national border, to be sold. The purchaser of the goods in this arrangement is the importer.
International trade simply refers to the exchange of capital, goods, and services across international borders or territories.
When we refer to manufacturing companies on this site we are talking about the companies who produce the goods that we source. The high quality of the products that the manufacturing companies who we work with provide, is among the biggest reasons for our success.
When we discuss molding we are talking about the process of manufacturing by shaping liquid or pliable raw material using a rigid frame called a mold or matrix. This itself may have been made using a pattern or model of the final object8.
When we refer to package design, well it’s pretty straight forward! We can help you design and develop the packaging for your products, in a cost effective manner.
Plastic Injected Molded Parts
Injection molding is a manufacturing process for producing parts by injecting material into a mold. Injection molding can be performed with a host of materials, including metals, glasses, elastomers, confections, and most commonly thermoplastic and thermosetting polymers9.
When we refer to product development, we are talking about the complete process of bringing a new product to market. Through our partners in China, we are able to help our customers turn their idea into a real product, and benefit from low rates.
When we refer to product manufacturing, we are talking about helping our customers improve efficiency by having their product manufactured in China.
A prototype is an early sample, model or release of a product built to test a concept or process or to act as a thing to be replicated or learned from10. In the context of this site the term is primarily used when discussing how we help our clients by pairing them up with prototype manufacturers in China who can help get their product made.
Sheet Metal Parts
Sheet metal is metal formed by an industrial process into thin, flat pieces. It is one of the fundamental forms used in metalworking and it can be cut and bent into a variety of shapes11.
Sourcing is a broad term that is used when discussing procurement practices with the purpose of finding, evaluating, and engaging suppliers of goods and services12. In other words, it’s what we help our customers with by using our relationships and intimate knowledge of the Chinese economy and business practices.
A textile (also referred to as cloth) is a flexible woven material consisting of a network of natural or artificial fibres often referred to as thread or yarn. When we discuss textiles on this site, we are normally referring to the manufacturing of clothing such as blue jeans.