The sand casting process has been around for many years, and it’s still one of the most popular methods for manufacturing parts. Sand casting is cost-effective, versatile, and perfect for working with materials that require the application of high temperatures. Before working with a manufacturer that utilizes this casting method, read on to find out about the five most important things to keep in mind.
Things To Remember In Sand Casting
1. It’s Perfect For Metals With High Melting Points
One of the most noteworthy advantages of sand casting over other methods like die casting is that sand can withstand very high temperatures. As a result, sand casting aluminum, steel, nickel, or titanium parts is almost always the best option. However, almost any pourable metal alloy is a great candidate for sand casting.
2. Sand Casting Is Best For Low-Volume Parts And Prototypes
There are a few factors that make sand casting a perfect option for creating prototypes. The lead time for creating molds used in sand casting is short compared to most methods, and so is the modification time for molds or tools. These tool and mold modifications are also cost-effective thanks to their relative simplicity, which means product designers can make alterations to prototypes as needed without incurring large expenses.
Sand casting is also an excellent option for manufacturing low-volume parts. Most runs range from a few hundred to a few thousand parts or components per year. Unless product designers are using the metals or alloys described above, though, they usually wind up switching to die casting as demand increases. It’s best to work with a parts fabricator that has the capability to perform both of these essential manufacturing methods.
3. Sand Casting Is An Eco-Friendly Option
For companies that pride themselves on environmental stewardship, sand casting is a perfect manufacturing method. The casting sand can be used for multiple production cycles, and the materials used can be recycled easily once they are no longer appropriate for casting applications. Companies that place a priority on being eco-friendly shouldn’t hesitate to mention their choice of manufacturing methods when marketing to consumers. Today’s buyers will often pay a premium for products they perceive as being more environmentally friendly.
4. The Type Of Sand Matters
To the untrained eye, all sand may appear to be created equal, but that’s not actually the case. Factors such as the size and shape of sand grains, their refractory strength, and their resistance to extremely high temperatures all play roles in determining how suitable they will be for casting. Common options used within the industry include resin sand, green sand, and sodium silicate. Product designers need to find parts manufacturers that take the sand selection seriously.
5. Finding The Right Manufacturer Is Crucial
For product designers, the most important factor to consider when planning a production run isn’t what type of sand will be used or what the melting point of the chosen material happens to be. It’s who they trust to help them sort out all of these details. Choose a parts manufacturer that has an excellent reputation for customer service and professionalism, and don’t be afraid to ask questions about the sand casting process.
The Bottom Line
There’s a reason that sand casting remains a popular method for manufacturing parts despite the proliferation of recent advancements in relevant technologies. This time-tested casting method is cost-effective, eco-friendly, and perfect for manufacturing many types of metal parts. Reach out to a machining expert to request a quote today.