Investment casting, sometimes known as lost-wax casting, is a metal forming method known for its ability to produce parts with tight tolerances, complex inner cavities and accurate dimensions.
As we discussed in our Introduction to Investment Casting post, the basic technique has existed for millennia. Over the years, innovations in equipment and methodology have kept pace with demand. Today, investment casting is one of the most popular forms of metal casting.
Read on to learn more about the unique process of investment casting.
Investment casting is nearly as old as metalcasting itself, with the earliest known examples dating back to 3,500 BC. Before investment casting was invented, metal castings were created using open stone or ceramic molds. Investment casting allowed for much greater detail and smoother finish, vastly expanding the possibilities of metal casting.
Today, investment casting is one of the most versatile methods of metal casting. The process, which is still similar to that used over 5,000 years ago, allows for tighter tolerances, more intricate shapes and smoother surface finishes than other metal casting methods.
In manufacturing, aluminum is rarely pure. Instead, manufacturers form alloys that dramatically increase aluminum’s strength and stiffness, while maintaining its other desirable properties. Both professionals and non-professionals often make comparisons between aluminum and steel, because the two metals are both used for such a wide variety of products.
But comparing aluminum to steel is a bit like comparing apples to oranges: steel is already an alloy, while aluminum is an element. Carbon steel, a basic steel alloy, is composed of iron (Fe) and carbon (C). Pure aluminum, despite its many winning properties, is too soft and not strong enough for most industrial applications. But aluminum alloys can be thirty times stronger than pure aluminum, and regularly exceed steel in strength-to-weight ratios.
Efficiency is good for any business. It doesn’t matter if your company is manufacturing or service oriented. Greater process efficiency always offers a wide range of benefits over "business as usual."
On a broad level, manufacturing more efficiently can help cut costs, improve throughput and reduce environmental impact. All of these general benefits lead to additional benefits down the road, from increased sales and quality to improved company image.
Read on for 9 ideas to improve manufacturing efficiency.
The shell mold process is unique and exhibits many advantages over other metal casting processes, but many people don’t fully understand its benefits.
In this installment of the Introduction to Shell Molding blog series, we will compare and contrast the shell mold process with investment casting and greensand casting methods. It is important to keep in mind that all processes have their own appropriate applications.
Based on your part's needs in terms of tolerances, production volume and surface finish, any one of these processes could be the ideal match.
Our recent post on fabrication to casting conversion might have gotten your wheels turning. Now you're wondering, "Could my products benefit by making the switch to casting?"
If you sell, use or otherwise produce fabricated parts, there's a good chance that you could produce them better, cheaper and faster through casting. To help you decide, we've prepared a brief Part Evaluation survey.
It all started on a routine facility tour
While touring a client’s facility, representatives of Eagle Precision Cast Products noticed a cable clamp assembly–a relatively complex fabricated part that they believed would be an excellent candidate for fabrication to casting conversion.
We've already covered the history of shell molding, as well as a list of need-to-know terminology, so now it's time to start exploring how shell molding works. Keep in mind that this post presents a brief overview. We'll describe each step in more detail as we move along in the Introduction to Shell Molding blog series.
If you're familiar with metalcasting processes, you probably already know a lot of these words. Feel free to skip to the next post if you're feeling confident. But if you ask me, the same credo that applies to metal casting applies to learning about metal casting: "Better safe than sorry."
On the other hand, if you're knee-deep in casting terminology and can't seem to tell your risers from your ejector pins, this is the post for you. Read on for a primer on the terms and ideas involved in shell mold casting. We'll cover all of these concepts in more detail in later posts from the Introduction to Shell Molding series. Or, click below to download our printable Shell Mold Process Whitepaper.
In this blog series, Introduction to Shell Molding, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about shell mold casting, from history to process and beyond. Whether you’re a student, a manufacturing professional, or just curious, this blog series will answer that burning question: What is shell molding?