Pros and Cons of Casting Processes

Bronte Precision work alongside a wide variety of casting and forging businesses to provide finish machining on large and intricate cast parts where tight tolerances are required. Each of the different casting processes has its own strength and weakness associated with it.

Investment Casting (Lost Wax Casting)

Both Ferrous and Non-Ferrous metals can be casted using this technique, and is often chosen for components with complex shapes and intricate core sections. It’s possible to produce parts with thinner walls and a good ‘as-cast’ finish, especially for alloys that are considered difficult to machine. The disadvantages of this process are the higher costs and a slower production turnaround. There is also a limitation on the size of parts that can be casted.

Sand Castings

The least expensive casting process, especially when producing small quantities of parts. Sand Casting are able to produce both ferrous and non-ferrous metals and can be used to produce large sized components. The Sand Casting process cannot achieve as accurate dimension as other processes, and often requires large tolerances which may later be machined.

Die Castings

Die Castings have a good dimensional tolerance with minimal machining required. They are ideal for large production volumes and is the process of choice when dealing with metals with low melting points such as Zinc, magnesium and Aluminium. This process is only really economically viable in large production volumes and the process is somewhat limited. Die Castings cannot be used for structural parts.

Permanent Mold Casting

Only suitable for non-ferrous metals, Permanent Mold Castings are suitable for small and simple components in high volumes. It is not a cheap process per say, but is certainly more viable than Lost Wax or Die Castings. You can achieve closer dimensional tolerances then is possible with Sand Casting and the end product is dense and pressure tight.

Plaster Casting

Plaster Casting is able to produce larger sized parts with a smooth as-cast finish. It can deliver closer dimensional tolerances than Sand Castings and intricate parts are possible. It is more expensive when compared to Permanent Mold or Sand Castings. The other key disadvantage with this process would be the frequent replacement of the plaster molding materials.

Bronte Precision have a lot of experience working alongside casting companies and foundries. We specialise in larger sized and complex castings. A lot of these castings tend to be associated with pump and valve components, quite often for the Oil & Gas industries where strict controls are in place. If you are looking for a reliable machinist with experience of parts such as impellers, manifolds and more then look no further! As well as finish machining on cast parts we can also provide associated services such as drilling, tapping and reaming.