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What is Casting?

Definition of Casting

Casting is the oldest metal processing process that first melting metals into liquid status, then pouring metal liquid in injection moulds, and cooling a while to obtain the required shape or dimensions.

Casting Characteristics

When products are not suitable for forging, casting is the economic method for blank shape. Especially for complex shape parts, casting can show its efficiency more.

Size and weight range of casting parts is very wide, almost unlimited metal species; Parts that have general mechanical properties, but also has comprehensive performance like wear-resisting, corrosion resistance, shock absorption, which is better than other metal forming methods, such as forging, rolling, welding, punching, etc. So metal blanks produced by the method of casting process are still the most on the quantity and tonnage so far.

For casting engineers and mechanical structure design engineer, heat treatment is very meaningful,and with a very high value to improve the method of material quality, heat treatment can change or influence the organization and properties of cast iron or cast steel, and can obtain higher strength, hardness, and improve the wear resistance and so on. Due to different purposes, there are many different kinds of heat treatment ways, basic can be mainly divided into two categories, the first kind is that organization structure will not be changed by heat treatment or should not be changed, the second is that the basic organizational structure will change. The first heat treatment procedure, is mainly used to eliminate internal stress, and the internal stress is casued in the process of casting due to different cooling conditions. And organization, strength and other mechanical properties will not change obviously after heat treatment.

Materials of Casting

Materials of castings are quite wide, both steel, iron, aluminum, brass can all be used for this process. Also like forged steel, cast steel is the most widely used materials for metal parts. Cast steel can be mixed directly according to the chemical compositions of materials. And even if for unqualified products,their materials can also be poured for recycling.

Casting Classifications

Combine with actual production, there are many casting processes. Main casting processes are lost wax casting (water glass casting & silica sol casting), lost foam casting, sand casting, aluminum casting (aluminum die casting & aluminum gravity casting). Lost wax casting is a investment casting process mainly for steel pats. Lost foam casting is more suitable for small cast iron parts. And for large cast iron parts, sand casting is the right choice. Aluminum die casting and gravity casting are all the casting processes for aluminum material. By comparision, aluminum die casting is for thin parts.

Applications of Casting

From classifications of casting process, casting can be adopted almost for all kinds of metal components and all industries. But when safety and large quantity factor is required, due to the limits of casting, forging is much better (see the differences between forging and casting).

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