The A-Z Guide of Die Casting Process

Die casting

The printing industry expanded its capabilities in the mid-1800s. This was mainly due to die casting equipment. Each mobile typing machine needed punctuation marks, letters (many types) and other symbols. Manufacturers used this new method to speed up the creation of individual elements. With die casting technology, they can produce elements of uniform sizes. Early printing machines used the same to reduce step-up times & errors.

Die Casting Process

Reference: Wikidemia.org

In die casting, the liquid melt gets pressed into a mould at high pressure. The high pressure bars vary between 150 to 1200. Speed also occupies a major factor (up to 540 km/hour). Usually, the materials used are low melting alloys. Die casting differs from sand casting as permanent metal moulds get used in the process. Unlike sand casting, the moulds need not be destroyed. So, manufacturing companies use die casting process for mass production of components. Die cast mould walls have low thickness. So, it is possible to manufacture large and complex components.

The following are the steps involved in die casting:-

Step 1: Preparation

Preparing the die is the first step in die casting. The die casting mould gets heated to a suitable temperature. Then, a refractory coating or lubricant gets sprayed onto it. This lubricant helps maintain the temperature of the die during the manufacturing process. The other benefits – it prevents premature solidification and assists in removing the cast once it has set.

Die casting engineers then use a high-pressure clamp to close and secure the die halves together.

Step 2: Injection

This is the second stage. The molten metal is taken from a furnace and poured directly into the die via a downward sprue. As per the need, manufacturers use either manual or automated process. Both the processes use gravity and other forces/pressures are not used. Liquid gets inserted in a straight  vertical position into the die. It naturally falls into the mould due to the natural pull of gravity.

The use of low-pressures eliminates turbulence and, as a result, leads to smoother components and parts. This, in turn, reduces porosity.

Step 3: Cooling

Having inserted the molten metal into the mould, it is then allowed to cool and solidify. To unclamp the die, the metal must have had sufficient time to take the shape of the mould. It must also be completely set before it is unclamped. The cast can be irreversibly damaged if it is removed prematurely.

Step 4: Ejection

Die cast engineers allow a certain amount of time before checking the die halves. Then, they are unclamped and opened, and the cast parts are carefully removed. You can either do this by hand. In some cases, ejector pins get used to safely remove the cast from the gravity die casting machine.

Die casting

Reference : rocheindustry.com

Step 5: Trimming

Trimming is the last step in gravity casting. The metal has to get cooled to the required temperature. Then, the gate, runners, sprues, and flash are expertly removed from the casting. A variety of tools get used to remove any sharp edges and excess material. This is to create the desired shape of a component as per the client instructions. The part is usually cleaned before despatching to the customer.

Advantages of Die Casting

Die cast parts get produced from moulds. So, they can be produced within specified tolerances and shapes. Thousands of identical castings get produced. There are few chances of needing tooling or machining to produce the desired shape. This makes mass production an easy process.

With diecasting, manufacturers can produce parts that have excellent durability and are dimensionally stable. These parts, in addition to having heat resistance also have tight tolerances.

Die cast parts have more strength and weight than injection molded plastic parts of the same dimensions. In contrast to other casting methods, thin wall castings are stronger and lighter. The major benefit in this process is die castings are not made up of parts that are welded or fastened together. Their strength is derived from the alloy itself rather than the joining process.

Applications of Die Casting:

The die casting process is used to produce parts with complex shapes, precise dimensions and clear outlines. In addition, the parts have very high surface quality, strength, and hardness. So, it is widely used in various industrial sectors. Among the many uses of die-casting is the production of consumer goods. Die-casting parts are used in the manufacturing of automobiles to the tune of 60%. The die-casting process is also used in various parts of Mercedes-Benz cars.

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