A plethora of parts is made using the casting process. Casting is a method in which molten metal is poured into the cavity of a mold and allowed to cool and solidify. The solidified metal takes the dimensions of the mold to form the desired part.
Precision casting is used to make various complex parts with much higher dimensional accuracy and more perfect geometry as compared to other types of casting processes. Highly precise parts are manufactured through precision casting.
There are multiple types of precision casting processes such as investment casting, ceramic casting, and pressure casting, A Precision casting manufacturer can employ any of these methods to create precision casts.
Investment casting is the most commonly used precision casting process. In this process, a wax pattern in the exact shape and size of the thing to be cast is made. Thereafter, the pattern is coated with a refractory ceramic material. The ceramic material hardens to form a shell. This ceramic shell is heated to melt the wax. The ceramic shell acts as the mold in which molten metal is poured. Once the metal cools and solidifies, the ceramic shell is broken to retrieve the metal cast.
The main advantage of investment casting is perfectly or almost perfectly shaped and sized casts. Parts having highly complex geometry can also be cast using this process. It can be used for most metals such as aluminum, magnesium, bronze, stainless steel, and more.
Complex machine parts, turbine blades, medical equipment, gears, and more can be manufactured using investment casting.
Ceramic mold casting involves a ceramic slurry made of Zircon, Alumina, and fused Silica powder along with alcohol-based silicon ester which acts as the binder. This slurry is coated over split gated metal patterns of the same dimensions and shape as the item to be cast. The patterns can be reused which is not the case with investment casting.
Once the slurry hardens over the patterns after 3-5 minutes, it is peeled off the patterns and reassembled to form the ceramic mold. It is first treated with a chemical stabilizer and then baked in an oven at a temperature of 100 degrees Celsius. Molten metal is then poured into the mold to make the casting.
This process can be used for making high-precision casts of all kinds of metals.
High-pressure casting is also a precision casting process because it produces casts having more tight and detailed geometry with more level of precision. Precision casting manufacturers engaged in making casts for engine blocks, heavy-duty fasteners, aerospace components, and more complex items can opt for this process.
In this process, molten metal is injected into a steel mold at high speed and pressure. The molten metal can be copper, lead, zinc, magnesium, and others. The pressure is between 1500 and 25000 pounds per square inch or PSI. The steel mold is sealed during the process. The molten metal is allowed to cool, take the shape of the mold and solidify. The ejector pins present in the mold expel the cast once the cooling process is complete. The steel mold can be reused after removing the scrap metal sticking to it.
Advantages of precision casting
- Precision casting makes it possible to create customized parts. The manufacturer can cast parts in exact accordance with the prototypes of the parts submitted by the clients. Even the minutest design features are incorporated into the casts.
- Precision casting is suitable for creating highly accurate and detailed casts required for parts of complex designs. This is a particularly useful feature for making complex machinery parts.
- Precision casting eliminates the need for additional processes such as machining, grinding, and polishing.
- This casting method is particularly well suited for the creation of prototypes and products. It has a broad range of uses in a variety of sectors, with the automotive and industrial industries being the most prominent.
- Precision casting has a wide range of applications. This is because you may mix numerous wax patterns to make a single custom mold. It is a product that comes out of the mold with a smoother appearance