Views:11 Author:Site Editor Publish Time: 2018-06-20 Origin:Site
Die casting is a metal casting process that is characterized by forcing molten metal under high pressure into a mold cavity. The mold cavity is created using two hardened tool steel dies which have been machined into shape and work similarly to an injection mold during the process. Most die castings are made from non-ferrous metals, specifically zinc, copper, aluminium, magnesium, lead, pewter, and tin-based alloys. Depending on the type of metal being cast, a hot- or cold-chamber machine is used.
The casting equipment and the metal dies represent large capital costs and this tends to limit the process to high-volume production. Manufacture of parts using die casting is relatively simple, involving only four main steps, which keeps the incremental cost per item low. It is especially suited for a large quantity of small- to medium-sized castings, which is why die casting produces more castings than any other casting process. Die castings are characterized by a very good surface finish (by casting standards) and dimensional consistency.
Two variants are pore-free die casting, which is used to eliminate gas porosity defects; and direct injection die casting, which is used with zinc castings to reduce scrap and increase yield.
Advantages of die casting:
Excellent dimensional accuracy (dependent on casting material, but typically 0.1 mm for the first 2.5 cm (0.004 inch for the first inch) and 0.02 mm for each additional centimeter (0.002 inch for each additional inch).
Smooth cast surfaces (Ra 1–2.5 micrometres or 0.04–0.10 thou rms).
Thinner walls can be cast as compared to sand and permanent mold casting (approximately 0.75 mm or 0.030 in).
Inserts can be cast-in (such as threaded inserts, heating elements, and high strength bearing surfaces).
Reduces or eliminates secondary machining operations.
Rapid production rates.
Casting tensile strength as high as 415 megapascals (60 ksi).
Casting of low fluidity metals.
The main disadvantage to die casting is the very high capital cost. Both the casting equipment required and the dies and related components are very costly, as compared to most other casting processes. Therefore, to make die casting an economic process, a large production volume is needed. Other disadvantages are that the process is limited to high-fluidity metals, and casting weights must be between 30 grams (1 oz) and 10 kg (20 lb). In the standard die casting process the final casting will have a small amount of porosity. This prevents any heat treating or welding, because the heat causes the gas in the pores to expand, which causes micro-cracks inside the part and exfoliation of the surface. Thus a related disadvantage of die casting is that it is only for parts in which softness is acceptable. Parts needing hardening (through hardening or case hardening) and tempering are not cast in dies.