The benefits of investment casting
As we explored in our last blog What is investment casting?, investment casting is one of the most popular metal-forming techniques for manufacturers. Today, it is used in a variety of industries, from aerospace through to the energy, medical and defence sectors.
In this blog, we examine the many benefits of investment casting and find out why it is often the preferred choice for manufacturers looking for high-precision, accurate high quality parts.
Versatility of design
Investment casting offers exceptional design flexibility and complex, intricate components can be cast to near net shape. Thin-wall sections and complex passageways can be cast with ease.
Our foundry team can also incorporate features such as logos, names or numbers.
Versatility of alloy selection
Most alloy bases such as ferrous, aluminium, nickel, copper and cobalt can be cast using the investment casting process. Some of these alloys are either very difficult to machine and process or almost impossible to machine economically. For these reasons, investment casting is the preferred process of choice for many product designers in sectors such as medical and oil and gas.
Most metal alloys , such as aluminium, bronze, steel and nickel can be used in investment casting. For this reason, this type of casting can be used in a wide variety of industries to produce many different components, from turbine blades through to safety interlocks and camera housings.
Close dimensional tolerances down to + - 0.1mm an be achieved – resulting in a highly accurate cast part.
An exceptional surface finish
Investment casting gives a very smooth finish – reducing the amount of secondary machining required and the associated time and costs when compared with other processes such as sand casting or forging.
Rapid prototyping is the best method of producing fast to market product for designers to appraise their product before expensive tooling is manufactured. Rapid prototyping can reduce the lead times for test products by up to 75% compared to production tooling methods.
The quality of investment castings is maintained from casting to casting – providing a very reliable technique and low-cost repeat runs.
The process has much lower tooling set-up costs than gravity-die or high pressure die casting. For this reason, it is sometimes used for pre-production runs for high-volume pressure die-casting products.
At Investacast, we strive to act in an environmentally responsible way in our foundries. The wax and metal alloy from the process are almost totally reclaimed. Furthermore, investment castings are created to near net shape – thereby reducing the amount of overall waste from production.
At Investacast, we can advise you on the most appropriate and cost-effective casting technique to meet your individual requirements.