Products Made using Sand Casting
|Products Made using Sand Casting|
|The Sand Casting Process in China|
|Sand Casting’s Pros and Cons|
Products made using this variant of the casting method range from simple to unique items, high and low volume productions and components that can be either small or massive in size. It can also be engineered to develop more sought-after engineering properties through the precise selection of materials.
The sand casting process can be used in:
Low Volume Production
At this end of the production spectrum, a great example of the use of sand casting is in the production of sculptures where the size limitations of other casting methods become a problem. One example of the sand casting method being used in a sculpture is that of Aries in London’s Piccadilly Circus. Today, the use of aluminium casting is used to produce a low volume of architectural components – trendy and fashionable small batch productions – such as decorative copings for use in a specific installation.
Medium Volume Production
This production spectrum is mostly representative of engineering components such as those used in pumps, trucks and valve housings. In this spectrum, many moulds are frequently prepared manually, though many parts can be produced from one pour. Because of the low tooling cost associated with this method (patterns many times produced in wood to fulfil the needs of low volume productions), and because some application and material combinations overlaps its’ capability with investment casting processes, it is a particularly attractive manufacturing method.
High Volume Production
At this end in the production spectrum, the casting method is highly automated. Sand mould production incorporates metal patterns, automatic compaction, turn-out, pouring and automatic mould fill. Well maintained tooling can also often be used for up to 100 000 cycles. Popular for use in the automotive sector, components produced often have fine detail. Examples of the types of components produced at this end of the spectrum include cylinder heads, suspension components and cylinder bodies.
The size in items produced using this casting process range from relatively small – these are often poured in multiples on a single pour – to huge machine components – produced from a single pour but in multi-part tools – that often has complex cores.
Today, the largest products produced ranges in a weight of up to a 100lbs, with the ability to produce multiple components to produce one product (such as the base of a railcar, which is made of multiple components).
The process of sand casting has a relatively low entry cost, allowing for all types of productions – from prototyping to high volume manufacturing.
Looking at the lower production volume end of the spectrum, the relatively simple tooling can be readily modified until the correct form is established. This form takes into account various aspects such as the expansion characteristics of the material being casted, the need for runners and gates as well as the need for further machining to accomplish the key details of the cast product.
At the end of the day, sand casting, in one of its’ various forms, is able to meet a wide range of production demands, including prototyping, low production volumes, high production volumes and a wide scope of various size castings as well.
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