Case Study: Rifle Bolt

Process: Metal injection molding

Material: MIM-4605 low-alloy steel

Density: 7.5 g/cm³

Tensile Strength: 1,550 MPa

Yield Strength: 1,400 MPa

Hardness: 28–35 HRC

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End Use and Function

This powder metallurgy component is a rifle bolt used in a Crickett 22LR rifle. To pass qualification testing, the component had to withstand 20,000 rounds of firing tests without any failure.


A 2015 Award of Distinction Winner in the Hand Tools/Recreation category


Made via metal injection molding using a MIM-4605 low-alloy steel. The part's design features many cross holes and undercuts, requiring complex side core matchings in the molding cavity. The part has a heat-treated density of 7.5 g/cm³, ultimate tensile strength of 1,550 MPa, yield strength of 1,400 MPa, elongation of 3%, and a hardness range of 28–35 HRC maximum.


This single part replaced one produced by brazing together three machined parts, delivering an estimated 35% cost savings in the process. Additionally, using MIM resulted in 60% reduction in lead time. The fabricator delivers 60,000 pieces annually.

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