|Non-expendable mold casting. This technique includes four different methods: permanent, die, centrifugal, and continuous casting.||welcome visitor!|
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Please note not all services in this article are offered by American Bronze
Non-expendable mold casting differs from expendable processes in that the mold need not be reformed after each production cycle. This technique includes at least four different methods: permanent, die, centrifugal, and continuous casting.
Permanent mold casting is metal casting process that employs reusable molds ("permanent molds"), usually made from metal. The most common process uses gravity to fill the mold, however gas pressure or a vacuum are also used. A variation on the typical gravity casting process, called slush casting, produces hollow castings. Common casting metals are aluminum, magnesium, and copper alloys. Other materials include tin, zinc, and lead alloys and iron and steel are also cast in graphite molds. Permanent molds, while lasting more than one casting still have a limited life before wearing out.
The die casting process forces molten metal under high pressure into mold cavities (which are machined into dies). Most die castings are made from nonferrous metals, specifically zinc, copper, and aluminium based alloys, but ferrous metal die castings are possible. The die casting method is especially suited for applications where many small to medium sized parts are needed with good detail, a fine surface quality and dimensional consistency..
Centrifugal casting is both gravity- and pressure-independent since it creates its own force feed using a temporary sand mold held in a spinning chamber at up to 900 N. Lead time varies with
the application. Semi- and true-centrifugal processing permit 30-50 pieces/hr-mold to be produced, with a practical limit for batch processing of approximately 9000 kg total mass with a typical
per-item limit of 2.3-4.5 kg.
Industrially, the centrifugal casting of railway wheels was an early application of the method developed by German industrial company Krupp and this capability enabled the rapid growth of the enterprise.
Small art pieces such as jewelry are often cast by this method using the lost wax process, as the forces enable the rather viscous liquid metals to flow through very small passages and into fine details such as leaves and petals. This effect is similar to the benefits from vacuum casting, also applied to jewelry casting. .
Continuous casting is a refinement of the casting process for the continuous, high-volume production of metal sections with a constant cross-section. Molten metal is poured into an open-ended,
water-cooled copper mold, which allows a 'skin' of solid metal to form over the still-liquid centre. The strand, as it is now called, is withdrawn from the mold and passed into a chamber of rollers
and water sprays; the rollers support the thin skin of the strand while the sprays remove heat from the strand, gradually solidifying the strand from the outside in. After solidification,
predetermined lengths of the strand are cut off by either mechanical shears or travelling oxyacetylene torches and transferred to further forming processes, or to a stockpile. Cast sizes can
range from strip (a few millimetres thick by about five metres wide) to billets (90 to 160 mm square) to slabs (1.25 m wide by 230 mm thick). Sometimes, the strand may undergo an initial hot
rolling process before being cut.
Continuous casting is used due to the lower costs associated with continuous production of a standard product, and also increases the quality of the final product. Metals such as steel, copper and aluminium are continuously cast, with steel being the metal with the greatest tonnages cast using this method.
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