Overview of Die Casting
Die casting is a critical technology in the manufacturing industry. It can be used for making parts of a product or even complete products. There are die casting companies that specialize in doing this job.
Would you like to learn more about die casting? Take some moment to go through this handbook. I am going to tell you everything that you need to know about die casting.
What is Die Casting?-Definition
We can start with a basic understanding of die casting. Simply defined, die casting is the process in which solid metallic materials are melted after which they are mould to take a particular shape or design.
Apart from just the shape, the chemical composition or structure of the metal can be changed through the die casting process.
The melting process is done by furnaces is usually done bu furnaces which have different heating temperatures depending on the type of metals that are being melted.
Die casting can be a single process or a multiple-stage process. It all depends on the type of metal material and the complexity of the shape that you want.
The final product of a die casting process can be of any size. It can be either small or large metal depending on what you want.
Keep in mind that die casting is not the same as metal fabrication. Even though both the processes involve the use of metals, there is a big difference in how the two are executed.
Die casting is mainly used on non-ferrous metals such as zinc, aluminium, brass, copper, magnesium among others.
Die casting is used for mass production, especially when you are intending to get the most accurate metals.
Background of Die Casting
The history of die casting dates back to the late 1800s. In fact, the first patent of a die casting machine was awarded in 1894. Although the earlier die casting technologies were somehow considered crude, they still managed to do the job.
However, early die casting technologies were somehow limited in terms of the type of metals that they processed.
Over the years, we have witnessed an array of advancements have been made in the die casting. Sophisticated die casting machines have been developed.
One of the advantages of the new machines is their production capacities. They can process more metals within a short time. They are also more accurate than the old machines.
Advanced die casting machines have the capacity to work on different types of metals. The high demand for metal products stimulated the need for better die casting machines. Almost every in the world was undergoing a major revolution, starting with automotive, medical among others.
Apart from technology, there has also been an evolution in the die casting companies. For instance, one group of these companies is known as captive die casting companies. Captive companies produce the die casting products for their own use. Most automakers fall under this category.
Another category is the open die casting companies. These companies provide the die casting services for different companies that need to use the casted metals in their respective production process. A perfect example is the Roche Industry.
Die Casting Materials: What are the Metals Used for Die Casting?
Can I die cast any metal that am planning to use?
No, die casting is not suitable for all types of metals. There are some metals that cannot be die-cast because of their physical and chemical properties. Since the process involves the use of heat and high pressure, only a few metals can withstand it.
Before we look at the metals used in die casting, let’s look at the two key aspects that determine the choice of metal:
1. Heat: During the die casting process, there must be enough heat to melt the metal. However, this hat should not alter the best characteristics of the metal. This means that the metal’s properties should remain the same despite the high temperatures.
2. Pressure: The metal should still maintain its desirable features despite the pressure that is being exerted on it.
Although there are different die casting techniques, all of them t draw their reference points from these two critical aspects. They will also enlighten you in choosing the right die casting technique for whichever type of metal that you are planning to use.
Common Metals Used In Die Casting
Here a is a breakdown of the most common die casting metals;
1. Zinc die casting
Zinc is a very popular metal that has a wide range of applications in the modern world. It has a wide range of applications.
Before you consider die casting your zinc metal, you should have a proper understanding of its alloys. The most common alloys for zinc die casting include ZA alloys and Zamalak alloys.
The good thing about zinc alloy is it can withstand high pressure and temperature. Through this process, this metal and its alloys will be relevant in their respective areas of applications.
2. Brass die casting
Brass is another alloy that can be used in the die casting process. This metal is basically an alloy of zinc and copper.
There are different types of brass alloys. Their difference is mainly because of the different percentage of copper and zinc
Other metal elements can be added to this alloy in order to enhance the desirable characteristics of the brass.
Brass alloys that are used for die casting include Admiralty brass, Alpha brass, Duplex brass, Aluminium brass, Beta brass among others.
One desirable property of brass is easy to machine. Brass metals are easy to die cast. The metal is also highly resistant to corrosion and is known for having extra strength. The low melting point of this metal makes it easy to deal with.
3. Aluminium die casting
Aluminium is among the most common metal that is used in a die casting process. It is also among the oldest metal types that are subjected to this process. It is also cheaper to take aluminium through this process.
Aluminium is known for its physical strength. This explains why it has a wide range of applications.
Die casting aluminium is among the best ways of turning it into a more usable form. The good thing about this metal is can be recycled.
There are different types of aluminium alloys that are used for die casting. They include K-alloy, alloy 383, alloy 413, alloy B390, alloy B360 among others.
Some desirable properties of aluminium that make it a perfect metal for die casting include tenacity, high operating temperature, excellent thermal properties, lightweight among others.
4. Steel Die casting
Steel is another common metal that we die cast. We give it a high priority because it is very versatile. This means that it is used for many different applications.
Being an alloy of carbon and iron, steel has the properties of these two elements. This explains why tends to have numerous superior performance properties.
Other components that make up steel include vanadium, chromium, tungsten among other minerals.
Some types of steel that are used in die casting include; Tool steel, carbon steel, stainless steel and alloy steel.
Some desirable properties of steel that make it ideal for die casting resistance to corrosion, extra strength, lightweight, recyclability, electricity and thermal conductivity.
Types of Die Casting
As we have seen, there are different types of metals that are processed through die casting. Since each metal has its unique properties, it is obvious that not all of them can be processed ion the same way.
This makes it necessary for us to have different types of die casting. Also, the difference in the casting method is necessitated by the difference in the desired outcome. You may want to achieve a different level of casting and this is possible if the processing method is different.
There are different types of die casting process that can be used to achieve the desired goals. These are;
- Pressure die casting
- Gravity die casting
- Vacuum die casting
1. Pressure Casting Technology
As the name suggests, the whole process of die casting is fully dependant on the pressure. This is unlike the gravity die casting process. Pressure die casting is mainly suitable for large scale production.
The external pressure is forced into the mould so that it can change the structure of the molten metal.
There are two main types of pressure die casting. These are;
1. High pressure die casting
2. Low pressure die casting
The difference between the low vs high is the level of pressure that is used in die casting their respective molten metals.
Advantages of Pressure Die Casting
Gets the best mechanical properties; Pressure die casting is usually used when you want to get the best mechanical properties from a metal. These features include smooth finishes and high levels of accuracy.
This explains why it is an idea die casting choice for delicate parts.
Ideal for large-scale production: High pressure is used in applications where you need to die-cast large volumes of metals. It increases the rate of molten metal flow.
Creates the best metal finishes. Pressure die casting crate smooth and refined finishes. This is why the products from this die casting are at their purest forms.
Suitable for delicate metal parts. These are metals that are thin and lightweight
Does not require extra machinery
Easy to control. You can easily control the end product of the die casting process. This can be achieved by simply adjusting the pressure level. You can let it operate at high pressure or low pressure die casting depending on what you want.
Disadvantages of Pressure Die Casting
Pressure die casting is only suitable for large -scale production. The high amount of capital needed for this process makes it unsuitable for cases where you want to process low volumes of metal.
The cost of pressure casting is also high. However, you can mitigate this problem by contracting affordable pressure die casting companies in China. They will be able to get the job done at a relatively lower cost.
High Pressure Die Casting vs Low Pressure Die Casting
Image of high pressure casting source https://www.open.edu/openlearn/science-maths-technology/engineering-technology/manupedia/high-pressure-die-casting
As we have seen, there are two main types of die casting. These are high pressure vs low pressure die casting.
Just by their names, you can tell that the main difference is in terms of their pressure. Are there any other differences?
To find out, let’s look at each type of pressure die casting individually.
High pressure die casting is a common technique of die casting metals. One f the key reasons is it has a wide range of applications in the modern world.
It is known as high pressure die casting because everything happens under high pressure and high speed. The most suitable operating temperature for this process is 700 degrees Celcius or more.
High pressure die casting is suitable for the large scale production of metals. It is also suitable for the production of delicate metallic parts.
The biggest problem with high pressure die casting is cost. The process is capital-intensive. This makes it unsuitable for the small-scale die casting needs.
Low pressure die casting, as the name suggests, operate under relatively low pressure levels. The molten metal is immersed in the mould under low pressure.
Although the end product is still, good, it is not as better as that of high pressure die casting. In terms of figures, the low pressure that is used does not exceed 15psi.
There are numerous advantages of low pressure die casting. One of them is a high production rate. The process is also ideal for small scale production.
So which one should I choose between high pressure vs low pressure die casting? It all depends on your needs.
If you are into large scale production, then you should consider getting high pressure die casting. The reverse is true for small scale production.
2. Gravity Die Casting
Image of gravity die casting source https://www.open.edu/openlearn/science-maths-technology/engineering-technology/manupedia/gravity-die-casting
This is another type of die casting that you may consider using. It is a popular method because it is applicable for both small scale and large scale die casting process.
The process is suitable for die casting non-ferrous metal alloys such as copper, aluminium and zinc.
As the name suggests, the movement of the molten metal is due to the force of gravity. Since the process uses a permanent mould, you can easily achieve a predetermined shape of the metal.
How does the gravity die casting work?
First, the mould is heated, sprayed with lubricant then closed. Secondly, molten metal is poured into the mould. This metal is then allowed to cool.
Lastly, the cast metal is removed from the mould.
The performance of gravity die casting depends on the machine that is being used.
Why is gravity die casting so popular?
The main advantage is cost-effectiveness. The process is cheaper than other die casting methods. It is also suitable for small scale production.
Gravity die casting is also suitable for casting complex designs and shapes of metals. This is possible because of the fixed design of the mould.
One of the disadvantages of gravity die casting is it cannot be used for extremely sophisticated shapes. It is also difficult to achieve very thin walls with this method of die casting.
Some of the product of gravity die casting include air conditioning components, parts of diesel engines, cylinder parts among others.
3. Vacuum die casting
Image of vacuum die casting source direct semantic scholar https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/Vacuum-Die-Casting-Process-and-Simulation-for-0.8-Jin-Jang/0987c75c14d790d3be8f1432c375a4b4cd475c3f/figure/11
Vacuum die casting has been adopted to solve the issue of porosity which is very common among other die casting methods. Porosity issue arises when some of the molten metals leak outside the mould.
How does vacuum die casting operate?
As the name suggests, the working mechanism of vacuum die casting involves the creation of a vacuum.
Molten metal is forced to flow into the vacuum container. The conditions in the mould causes solidification.
One of the advantages of vacuum die casting is it has desirable welding properties. It is also capable of both small and large scale productions.
The process also minimizes wastage of molten metal since it eliminates the issue of porosity.
The main disadvantage of vacuum die casting is it requires a high initial cost of investment. The good news is a die casting company will always be there to bail you out.
Die casting is commonly used in the automotive industry.
Application of Die Casting-Uses
Meta die casting has become a global phenomenon. It is used in almost every industry. In some applications, the process is used for making a complete product. In other applications, it is used for making components of a product.
To bring it into a better perspective, we are going to look at each type of metal die casting.
Uses of aluminium die casting: The process is used for increasing the rigidity and fluidity of the aluminium products. Such products can be used in areas and applications that experience high temperature
Applications of zinc die casting: Most zinc alloys are common in industrial applications. They are mainly used in less-intensive applications.
Application of steel die casting: Products of steel die casting are used in heavy and intensive applications. They include automotive parts, parts of ships, and in chemical and pharmaceutical industries.
Applications of copper die casting: The strength and electrical conductivity of copper make it ideal for various applications. Copper products are used in electric cables, telecommunication cables among others.
Applications of brass die casting: Brass die casting are ideal for delicate applications. They are used in aerospace, chemical industries, automotive among others.
Advantages of Die Casting/ Benefits
Let’s say I want to use a particular type of metal for manufacturing, should I take it for die casting? If so, what are the benefits?
Here are the advantages of die casting process for metals;
1. Saves time
Would you like to speed up the production process in your company? Consider seeking die casting service. Whether it is the gravity die casting or pressure die casting, you will save time when you go the die casting company for this essential service.
With speedy production, you will meet your market demand in time.
Die casting provides a better option for processing your metal materials. You are likely to experience this advantage when you get affordable die casting companies.
You will cut down on the cost of production and at the end of the chain, your customers will also enjoy this.
3. Boosts the strength of the metals
Products of die casting process are stronger as compared to other metal treatment options.The process does not degrade the quality of the parts. Instead, it tends to add some value to your metals.
Methods such as injection moulding are known for degrading the metals.
4. Very accurate
You can tell this just by looking at the application areas. Die casting is characterized by high levels of precision. The products of the process are designed to be stable and accurate.
You can easily get a product that meets all your requirement specifications through die casting.
5. Different finishes
A comprehensive die casting procedure gives room for a different type of metal finishes. Whether you want your metal to be plated, coated or galvanised, the process will be adjusted to meet your demand.
Roche Industry: Reliable Die Casting Company
Would you like to get the full benefits of a die casting process? Choose the best die casting companies. They are the only ones that are capable of delivering what you want.
At Roche Industry, we provide die casting services for different types of metals in China. We are fully equipped with advanced die casting machines. Our engineers have all the required expertise for the die casting process.
In case you would like to get a flawless die casting service, don’t hesitate to contact us. We have all that it takes to deliver.