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Metal Extrusion

Definition
Extrusion is the conversion of an ingot or
billet into lengths of uniform cross section by
forcing m etal to flow plastically through a die.

Classification of Extrusion Processes


Direct Extrusion [Forward Extrusion]:
The metal billet is placed in a container
and driven through the die by the ram
(extrusion ram and metal flow are in the
same direction); high forces are required
to overcome the m etal deformation and
the friction between the billet and container
during process.

1. Direct Extrusion
2. Indirect Extrusion
A. The billet is upset to fill
the container.
B. further compression
until the beginning of
metal flow through the
die.
C. Extrusion proceeds.
D. Piping defect occurs.
E. Formation of dead metal
zone.

Impact extrusion:
Im pact extrusion is a special process to
form hollow shapes with short lengths.
Typical product is collapsible toothpaste
alum inum tube. As shown in figure, the
die has an accurate outside diam eter of
the tube and a punch having an accurate
inside diameter of the tube strike the billet
at high velocity. It is a restricted process
to soft metals such as aluminum, copper,
tin and lead.

Extrusion Forging:
Extrusion forging is a
combined process of
forging and extrusion. A
common example is the
production of engine valves,
where the billet is partially
extruded to form the valve
shank, and the rest of the
billet is forged to form the
valve head.
Hydrostatic Extrusion:
In hydrostatic extrusion, a pressurized
fluid is used instead of extrusion ram to
act on the billet sides and back face, the
advantages of this process are no
frictional forces, and the billet need not to
be of the same shape as the container.
Typical products are stepped shafts.

Production of Hollow Shapes and Tubes:


Tube Extrusion:
Tubes and hollow sections can be produced by extrusion by attaching a m andrel,
the clearance between the m andrel and die wall determines the wall thickness of
the tube.

Porthole or Spider Die :


Porthole dies are suitable for
very long section of different
hollow shapes, and for thin
wall thickness or small
dimensions.
The metal (Aluminum) flow
through the holes and then
pressure welded during
deformation at die outlet.

Extrusion Die
Extrusion dies are made from different types
of hot working tool steels. The figure below
shows schematic sketches for (a) Taper die
for hot extrusion of steels with molten glass
as a lubricant, and (b) flat die comm only
used for non-ferrous materials. The cross
section explains the entrance angle, die land
and relief angle.
This figure shows the steps of m aking T-section extrusion along the die.

Metal Flow in Extrusion:


The flow pattern in extrusion is important because of its effect on the quality and
mechanical properties of the final product, where the im proper metal flow during
extrusion can produce various defects. In extrusion m etal flow longitudinally like a
fluid flow, so the extruded products have an elongated grain structure.
A common technique for
investigating the flow pattern is to
section the billet into two longitudinal
halves and mark the sectional face
with a square grid pattern, the two
halves are placed in the chamber
together and partially extruded, and
then they are taken apart and studied.

Extrusion Defects:
Due to im proper material conditions and process variables, several types of
defects can be developed in extruded products. There are three principle
extrusion defects:

Surface cracks (also called speed cracks)

Cause: high speed or high speed and friction.


These cracks are intergranular (along the grain boundaries) and are usually
caused by hot shortness. Hot shortness is the tendency for some alloys to
separate along grain boundaries when stresses of deformed at high tem peratures
due to the low melting point constituents segregated at grain boundaries.
Solution: Reduce billet temperature and extrusion speed.
Piping (also called fish tailing)
Cause: Surface oxides and impurities.
According to the metal flow pattern, surface oxides and impurities are drawn
towards the center during deform ation, as m uch as one third of the extruded
product length m ay contain this type of defect, and have to be cut off as scrap.
Solution: Piping can be minimized by modifying the flow pattern and controlling
friction, or by machining the billet outer surface before extrusion to rem ove
surface scales.

Internal cracks
Cause: high internal stresses at the centerline.
Internal cracks are due to high internal stresses near the centerline in the
deformation zone of the extrusion die.
The tendency y for center cracking:
Increases with the increase of die angle and amount of im purities.
Decreases with the increase of extrusion ratio and friction.
Solution: Select proper die geometry and extrusion variables.

Hot Extrusion & Cold Extrusion

HOT EXTRUSION is the process of forcing a


heated billet to flow through a shaped die opening.
The tem perature at which extrusion is performed
depends on the material being extruded. Hot
extrusion is used to produce long, straight m etal
products of constant cross section, such as bars,
solid and hollow sections, tubes, wires, and strips,
from materials that cannot be formed by cold
extrusion.

Cold Extrusion
Cold extrusion is a general term
often denoting a combination of
operations, such as direct or
indirect extrusion and forging to
produce short solid or hollow
shaped products.
Workpieces are often cup-shaped
and have wall thicknesses equal
to the clearance between the
punch and die.
Ductility must be restored
between operations by annealing,
and any scale formed during annealing must be removed by blasting or pickling
before subsequent extrusion. Cold-Extruded Metals in the order of decreasing
extrudability are Aluminum and alum inum alloys, copper and copper alloys, low
carbon and medium-carbon steels, modified carbon steels, low-alloy steels, and
stainless steels.

Reference
Lecture notes of Dr. Ahmed Fareed , Ain shams University, 2007.