Introduction to Metal Casting

Principle of Metal Casting On it's most basic level, when reduced to the most essential elements, molten metal is poured into a cavity called a mold, the mold forms a pre-determined shape, the metal cools to the point of solidification, after which it can be called a casting. A Brief History of Metal Casting

500 AD

The timeline above has the high points, and only includes most favorite characters and events, below will be several other players that would have made the chart too messy... 1 - Gold (Au) is speculated to be the first metal to be cast, due to it's naturally occurring state in metallic form, there is evidence that dates back as far as 4000BC of this in the Eurasiatic Steppe Belt also known as the Russian Black Sea area. Between 4000BC and 2000BC there was much development in the art of metal casting, including the use of Copper (Cu) and eventually by 2000BC the smelting of Iron (Fe). The dates are fuzzy and unimportant with regard to passing this modules examination. But the prevailing theory is that droplets of copper were discovered in the ashes of firepits, formed from the stone that circled or lined the fire. Humans, being the clever organisms that we are eventually determined that this too, was a metal like gold, and could be extracted from specific types of stone materials... An excellent BBC audio file exists on this theory under the programme heading "Material World" and the episode is "Mining Great Ormes Head"... it may not be exact but that should be close enough to get you there... 2 - 2000BC is a nice marker that defines the discovery of Iron, similar to Copper (Cu) it is not a naturally occurring metal, but as a species we applied similar methods to extract it as were developed for Copper (Cu). 1000BC too should have been included, on the timeline as it is significant in that as populations grew and migrated the above skills moved with them. The Chinese are credited with developing a significant body of casting technology over that period that included Lost-Wax casting. 3 - By 600BC the Chinese had also discovered Iron (Fe) and were developing methods to smelt and cast it.

4 - This date of 500AD is curious, in that cast crucible steel was first being used in India at that time, what is surprising is that the technology was lost for a considerable period and did not get rediscovered until 1200 years later in 1750 by Benjamin Huntsman in England. 5 - Huntsman likely could not have developed his process if not for Abraham Darby of Coalbrookdale in England. Darby is credited as the first foundry man to use Coke as a fuel for firing his Iron (Fe) foundry in 1730. It's also of some significance that an energy crisis was afoot in the 1800's due to all the wood being burnt into charcoal, ship building and the general need of growing populations, empires and our drive towards advancing our collective life styles through innovation... The move to Coke (not pepsi) cut the cost of Iron (Fe) production to 1/3rd what it was... 6 - 1855AD is the year Sir Henry Bessemer, one of my favorite figures in history filed a patent on the Bessemer process. Bessemer is best remembered for developing a method of decarborizing Iron (Fe) into steel... The jist of it has to do with blowing air through the molten Iron (Fe) in the hopes that the oxygen gathers some of the Carbon out of the liquid metal, eventually reducing it to less than 2% carbon content... The demarcation between Steel & Iron (Fe)... Do not take the last statement as gospel yet, as that will be dealt with in far more detail under the categorization of Ferrous metals later... For more information on Sir Henry Bessemer, again I direct you to the BBC radio 4 series called "Inventors Imperfect" Sir Henry had an entire 30min episode on his life, the Bessemer process and some of his other legacies, that landed him as an Inventor Imperfect. There are so many other great minds that have contributed to the advancement of casting technology that an entire course on just them would be required... This is largely due to the evolution of the patent office and the general trend toward recorded history... If such offices and practices existed in 500AD we would never have lost the first process of making crucible steel in India, and just think how far along we'd be now... 7 - Today, All this rich history has been driving toward one purpose, one goal, one objective, and that is, by knowing where we've been, I hope to have a better sense of where I will go. Key Metals in the Foundry or Metal Casting Aluminum (Al), Copper (Cu), Chromium (Cr) Iron (Fe), Magnesium (Mg), Manganese (Mn) Nickel (Ni), Silicon (Si), Tin (Sn), Zinc (Zn) The above are identified with their Elemental names as found in the periodic table, the only thing to note at this time is that Silicon (Si) is grouped as a semi-metal in the periodic table and not as a pure metal. Key Nonmetals in Metal Casting Carbon (C), Sulphur (S), Phosphorus (P) Hydrogen (H), Nitrogen (N), Oxygen (O)

Take note, the last three elements listed (Hydrogen (H), Nitrogen (N), Oxygen (O)) are typically encountered in a gaseous state and will reflect a different elemental symbology as shown below Hydrogen (H2), Nitrogen (N2), Oxygen (O2) Key oxides (in the form of ceramics) Alumina (Al2O3), Silica (SiO2), Magnesia (MgO) and Calcium Oxide (CaO) The compounds listed in this section are the primary constituents of Slag or Dross encountered in the process of melting metals and their reaction to Oxygen (O) found in the atmosphere An effort has been made to list the Elemental symbol alongside of the name or compound, this is a practice that should continue... Even if the word Iron (Fe) is used 5 (Five) times within a single sentence... Provided the symbols are accurate to the names, it should aid in the process of internalizing their symbol... I'm not saying that this will be on the final Exam, but I'd be quite surprised if it wasn't there just as a "Gimme" mark... and if you don't know these cold, you have no business passing the exam... Classification of Foundries In general terms Foundries can be grouped by the type of metals that they cast, the primary groupings are "Ferrous" and "Non-Ferrous". The term Ferrous relates to the presence of Iron (Fe) in the metal being poured. A Ferrous foundry would typically pour cast iron in it's various forms including but not limited to the various grades of steel. A Non-Ferrous foundry would typically pour alloys of metal that are NOT Iron (Fe) based, these would include, but are not limited to Aluminum (Al) and all it various alloys, Copper (Cu) and it's alloys of brass and bronze, as well as the Magnesium (Mg) based alloys. If pressed further I would divide the above categories into 2 (two) other sub-groupings called Jobbing and Captive foundries. Captive foundries are typically a division of a larger corporation or business, they are considered "Captive" in that they only make castings for the parent company. A good example of a captive foundry would be the engine block division of an automotive manufacturing facility. One of the advantages of creating a captive foundry would be consistency of production and greater control of product development and retention of intellectual property relating to the castings, and proprietary techniques developed for their production. The Jobbing Foundry is one that is an open shop that produces castings for other companies, personally I would think that Jobbing Foundries would employ a broader skill-set and be more flexible to meet the constant changes that influence the casting market. Similarly Jobbing Foundries would have the potential to be more dynamic due to the ever changing types of work performed, and would be able to offer staff greater challenges. Parts Integration

machined or fabricated by a combination of both. and the current trend towards parts integration. parts. it can be anything and everything that is imaginable that would fit within it's volumetric dimensioning. as like the un-carved block it holds all possibilities within it's bounds. The trend specifically in the automotive market is the creation of complex castings that are replacing similarly complex parts that had previously been stamped. The very idea of metal casting is such that it evokes the tenets of the Taoist "Un-carved block".The final sub-section of Module 1 deals with the ideology of casting. A block of wood. I agree that all of their suggestions hold into a full fledged foundry.. my many relatives and friends have suggested ideas for object. • • • • Alloy Type Metal Quality Production Demands Economics Alloys have a wide spectrum of temperatures that they melt at. it's tremendous potential. Metal Alloy Type Zinc Aluminum Magnesium Copper Cast Irons High Manganese Steel Monel (70N.30Cu) Nickel Based Super Alloys High Alloy Steels High Alloy Irons Carbon & Low Alloy Steel Temp Range (Fahrenheit) 650-850 1150-1350 1150-1350 1650-2150 2450-2700 2550-2650 2500-2800 2600-2800 2700-2900 2800-3000 2850-3100 Temp Range (Celsius) 345-455 620-735 620-735 908-1180 1340-1480 1400-1455 1370-1540 1430-1540 1480-1600 1540-1650 1565-1700 . art pieces etc that I could cast with the idea that it has business potential. In it's virgin state it holds the myriad of possibilities. The choice of furnace type is based on these 4 factors. Over the course of the last 8 or 9 months that I've been letting the idea of extending theworkshop. Melting of Metals A prerequisite to casting is the use of metal in a molten state. sitting on the bench before the carver. tools... the list below should illustrate this point. The transformation of metal from solid to molten is accomplished in a variety of ways through the use of various types of furnaces.. And such is the mound of molders sand before it takes the shape of the casting that is to be. but the true potential of a foundry operation is that it is not constrained to a particular line or market.

as well as the fuel and power consumption. Similarly the types of refractory used are matched to the basicity or acidity of the metal and/or its resultant (Dross or slag). The economics of furnace selection relate to factors of capital depreciation.. Crucible furnaces are also well suited to Jobber type foundries as a selection crucibles can easily be established to meet the requirements of the various alloy types encountered. which can adversely effect the chemical properties of the alloy being melted... The basic premise is that the heat. but is a Crucible original designs. Pictured to right is another of theworkshop. Furnace Types Crucible Furnaces Pictured to the right is theworkshop. This is an oil-fired furnace that can melt a broader range of alloys with higher heat capabilities. Production demand can range from small batches under 100lbs through to 100 ton/hr continuous pour furnaces that run for days and weeks at a time uninterrupted. maintenance and operating labour.Titanium Zirconium 3100-3300 3350-3450 1700-1820 1845-1900 as transcribed from AFS "Technology of Metalcasting" Metal Quality is effected by oxidization and losses due to's original "Fat-Boy Blast Furnace". or have a tilting mechanism with a fixed position crucible in the furnace. . Crucible furnaces are used in smaller foundry operations that melt non-ferrous alloys. Oil and electricity are other ways to fire the furnace. The Crucible Furnace is one of the oldest methods of meting metals. well as it turns out it isn't really a blast furnace. These furnaces can be stationary as pictured above. this one is fired with Hardwood or Charcoal. is absorbed by the crucible and transferred to the metal until it eventually melts. Though Propane/LPG..

They can be fired either with Gas. Arc Furnaces can be configured with "Ultra-HighPowered" (UHP) transformers that can supply 600900KVa/ton.. These units are typically Monsters and can be several hundred feet long with melt capacities topping 75 Tons. Front Charging. That's fuckin' hot!!! With such extreme heat comes the requirement of cooling with water jackets. Advantages are High capacity. with issues resulting from gas pickup and excessive dross formation due to the exposed flame on the charge.. 3 electrodes are used that are tied to a 3 phase electrical source. Tower-Type Jet Melter or Stack and the regenerative/recuperative burner system furnaces. Oil. Reverbs are typically found in High production Aluminum foundries. The heat of the sustained arc can be in excess of 7232F or 4000C.. A typical "Direct Arc" furnace. continuous runs. heat exchanges and recirculation systems. The electrodes strike an arc with the metal charge.. I believe the lower case "a" is a typo in the text and should be an "A" as in Amps. The furnace can have a pivoting point with a hydraulic actuator to tilt the furnace backward to skim of the dross/slag or forward to pour off the metal. As with all furnaces there is a variety of refractory compounds that range from basic to acidic that can be used to match the pH characteristics of the metal and resultant dross/slag. These include (but are not limited to. Well Fired.... There are number of various orientations and styles of reverbs.Reverberatory Furnaces To the right is my interpretation of a DryHearth Sloping Reverb Furnace.. . Construction is typically of High Alumina Fire brick (85% Alumina) and structural steel (from what I can see in the text illustrations). Electricity or a combination of the three. Dry Hearth.) Single Chamber.

with the Orange depicting the heavy copper coils that surround the Crucible & Charge. or is it??? The In-Direct Arc furnace is similar in principle. Alumina is a personal point of interest. as the Titanium IS THE Electrode.. The Crucible can be either pushed up and out of the core via a ram. but curiously it can't be considered an In-Direct Arc.. It is a heavy Copper tube that usually requires active cooling by passing a flow . This is beneficial in uniform distribution of temperature and alloy chemistry through the melt.The high temp capacity of this furnace lends itself better toward ferrous casting than non ferrous. But like all things the drawback is the potential for drawing dross or surface impurities into the melt if the stirring action is excessive.. Acidic Refractories are Silica Dioxide (SiO2) based & Base type refractories can be either Calcium Oxide (CaO) or Magnesium Oxide (MgO). The In-Direct furnace also can be a sealed unit that operates under a reduced atmosphere for specialty metals that are sensitive to oxidization or atmospheric contamination. The illustration is a "Cross-Section" view. The electrodes can be either graphite or carbon.. or the crucible can be fixed inside the coil and a tilting mechanism employed for the pouring process.. The considerations of pH matching refractories is stressed in the text more so with Arc furnaces. and are selected to match the type of metal being melted...Core/Channel or Coreless To the right is a basic Coreless Induction furnace. There are some unusual properties of the coreless furnace that are worth noting. As an aside my gut feeling is that the term should be "Chromium Oxide" rather than "Chrome Oxide" but I defer to the venerable Bible (AFS Technology of Metalcasting).. Just so you know. specifically that the metal undergoes a circulatory action or stirring once molten. Also the Coil that surrounds the crucible is not a thin AWG #12 or 14 copper wire that you'd find in your house wiring. The neutral refractories are typically Alumina (Al2O3) and the less common Chrome Oxide (Cr2O3).. as I have a significant qty of Aluminum Dross to refine for the remaining metal trapped in it and to extract the Alumina for future uses within the foundry. Titanium is a good example of a vacuum process arc furnace. or the Coil/shell assembly can be lifted up & away from the crucible. and so is reflected in this sentence. Induction Furnaces . This furnace is beyond the typical home or hobby foundry.. but the arc is struck above the metal charge and is typically just one electrode.. The metal charge held in the crucible acts as the core and develops heat through "Eddy Currents" induced by the EMF (Electro-Magnetic-Force) that is concentrated in the centre of the circular primary coil....

The size and shape of the metal containment area is more flexible. Copper based alloys are more efficiently melted with AC voltage frequencies between 60 and 100Hz (Hertz). The distinction for the less mentally adroit is the addition of a "Core". In closing the Induction Furnace section here are some cool equations and data. The illustration to the right is of the most basic "Core/Channel" Furnace. For these reason's there are no plans for theworkshop. or I'd be out building one now rather than summarizing these notes.. Lastly. No specifications are given for the Wall thickness or inner diameter of the copper tubing.. Core/Channel Induction Furnaces are typically employed to hold Volumes of molten metals at a molten state for continuous pour operations. completing the "Secondary Coil" circuit..of water through it. while lighter Alloys such as Aluminum are more efficiently processed at frequencies ranging from 150 thru 700Hz depending on the density of the alloy. The practice of pre-melting and holding between 2 (two) different furnaces is called "Duplexing" (that little bastard will be on the to employs "Cored/Channel" induction furnaces in the near future.) There are issues. not the least of which is the requirement of a molten heel of metal to completely encircle the core. The core acts as a transfer medium for the EMF or Flux (electro-magnetically speaking NOT Chemometallurgically). before the primary can be energized. . the Coreless Induction furnace is capable of utilizing various frequencies to accommodate different Alloy types. or the general hassle of dis-assembling the furnace should such a quantity of metal freeze in the channel that it can't be returned to a molten state. The typical issues of Metal solidification within the Channel (Loop that forms the Secondary Coil) are of considerable concern if the Alloy being processed has a high thermal expansion co-efficient as it may potentially damage the channel upon solidification. This implies that the furnace is a "Continuous Melt" class unit and does not lend itself well to "Batch Melt Processing like it's Coreless counter-part. Sweeping generalization. and the maintenance of the Primary Coil is more accessible. and conversely High Density = Low Freq. Low Density = High Freq...

... and a tap is provided to tap-off the molten metal.... or supporting narrative. and 1KW continuous power for a duration of 1 hour is 1Kwh.. I think it would be prudent to not use the above for extended extrapolations due to such variables as heat losses and ambient temperature variables that could influence extended calculations.413BTU. The charge material becomes molten and flows to the base with the expected Slag.. Cupola Furnaces Basically a steel tube with racks for holding a mixture of charge material. fuel and refining minerals. Without seriously violating the Copyright of the AFS text. A series of Ni-Chrome elements are energized around the crucible and the radiant energy is absorbed by the Crucible and the metal.... Key points are to angle Tuyere slightly to 15 degrees off horizontal to get a more central blast to the center of the charge. up through the mixture.And if that's not enough. Of minor note is the "Glo-Bar" furnace that uses a Silicon Carbide rod in place of Ni-Chrome elements placed at the top of the furnace.. Unlike the Core/Channel Induction furnace ER type systems can take solid charge material..000Watts = 1KWatt=3. A door is provided to remove the slag.... Wow.. There are lined and unlined Cupola's. 1. No noise. The basic premise is the same through out. As well as Water cooled tuyere assemblies that extend their life considerably. mileage may vary.... with the unlined variety requiring water-cooling along the entire body of the steel shell. A less exciting way to melt metal than the Electric Resistive Furnace. flames or potential for disaster. and is blasted into the base.. but they are typically used in Duplexing processes for consistent holding of molten metal.. But essentially it is an ER type with a different element. ... The fuel is ignited by an oxygen enriched atmosphere. lastly 19Kwh will raise 1 ton or iron 100F. I'd love to have included the numerous other Cupola photo's sectional views and diagrams that are in the book. fumes. The illustration to the right shows a "Rear-Slagger". Open Hearth Furnace Since these furnaces are no-longer in use (since late 1960's early 1970's) there is no illustration.

Yielding a ratio of 25 Parts Scrap to 1 part Flux to 3.. While the molten metal is taken off from a hole called a "Tap".. and it's not that important.. or (%CaO +% MgO) over (%SiO2+%Al2O3) The importance of balancing the pH of the impurities has to do with their otherwise high melting points in an Acidic Oxide state. These units typically are used for Cast Iron production with a carbon content level of 2. I want this basic ratio to be included beyond the scope of the study notes should I ever decide to build such a furnace.. 25 : 1 : 3. this is limited to approx 700-800F for conventional refractory lined Cupolas and extended to 1000-1200F on the water cooled Tuyere models.) is 2000lbs scrap.. there is a slight discrepancy between the text and the lecture notes. unless answered out of context...125 parts fuel.. the resultant slag will have better fluid properties for removal when this balance is achieved... Rust and sand from the initial charge. From the time cupola is fired-up to the time it is shut down or "Dropping Bottom" is called a "Campaign". The materials removed in a properly formed slag are Coke. A campaign can run for several weeks on larger Cupolas. this mixture enters through a "Charging Door". The theory is that Calcium Carbonate (CaCO3) + Heat = Calcium Oxide (CaO) and Carbon Dioxide CO2) This process is referred to as Calcination.. The text notes production rates up to 100tons per hour as opposed to the 30 tons per hour previously noted..8% carbon and a production capacity of over 30 tons per hour.. . The Limestone (or Dolomite) produce oxide(s) that are pH "Basic".. Dolomite is similar in that it is a source of Calcium Oxide (CaO) but also is a source of Magnesium Oxide (MgO). I'm hesitant to start firing off it's equations as I just don't have the data at hand. The materials entering the top of the cupola is called a "Charge or Burden". Ash. The balance is determined by the ratios of Metal to Flux to Fuel. and each tuyere fed off of a common wind-box. 80lbs lime stone and 250lbs of Coke. The approximate dimensioning for commercial Cupolas is determined by the inside diameter ranging from 18" up thru 160". A typical charge (according to the Lecture notes...4% to 3..125..The tuyere's typically encircle the base with 6 or more nozzles facing inward. These would be considered hobby or low volume units by comparison... while the impurities of the scrap Iron and steel are Silica SiO2 and Alumina Al2O3 and some sulphur (S) which all tend to be pH "Acidic" the ratio of Acidic to Basic should be 1:1. Both may appear on a test or exam... The Flux is Limestone (or Dolomite) and is added in specific proportions to the Coke (fuel) and the metal in the charge. this is a mixture of Coke. The Limestone is essentially Calcium Carbonate (CaCO3). Other enhancements that you can incorporate are exhaust heat exchangers to preheat the incoming air. but my lawyer advises me that I have a case if either is marked wrong. There is a lower limit to diameter size that will be a function of "Critical Mass of Charge or Burden" but I'm almost positive I've read about Cupolas having inner diameters as low as 6" on other websites.. with my personal favorite being the "Divided-Blast" cupola that has 2 (two) wind-boxes and 2 rows or tuyere's with an optimal spacing of 30 to 42" one above the other... a source of Calcium Oxide when heated. it likely will not have a 1 ton capacity. scrap Iron (or possibly Iron Ore) and a Fluxing agent (Limestone) to aid in removing impurities in the Iron..

.. The charge can tolerate only up to 30% scrap content with the majority as molten Cast Iron. Mold Types & Methods This section will largely be a text based listing of General Mold types and the various methods associated with each.. Argon Oxygen Decarburization Process Similar to the Blast Oxygen Furnace in process. The Oxygen acts as the catalyst in the decarburizing process. So when "the shit goes down. The injection of the gas mixture results in a vigorous agitation of the melt that improves the removal of unwanted elements such as sulfur to the specifically formulated slag that covers the melt. and an inlet port at the top where Oxygen is piped in and ignited. fast Cycle-time steel production furnace. Very much the sort of thing a Metal-Casting Specialty channel would carry. with production rates up to 100 tons per hour. The Charge is held in a monstrous Egg shaped vessel with an exhaust port at the back. Blast Oxygen Furnace This furnace is a high capacity. (though this seems vague. as well as the advantages and disadvantages found with them.. I believe that this is the modern equivalent of Sir Henry Bessemer's method of steel production.Coke Production All of the "Cupola" related information is meaningless in the absence of COKE. The resultant Coke is 92% pure Carbon with the remainder classified as Ash. I've opted to not make . but Argon Oxygen Decarburization is considered a secondary process in refining specific alloys such as Stainless Steel.." and you're left to make your own Cast Iron.. The Text is a fair reference.this is the end of Course notes for Module 2 MATL MTB70. you'll want to know a bit about Coke production. it's what is listed from the lecture notes) and hopefully will be of use in the Post Apocalyptic Era (PAE). while the Argon aids in the retention of precious alloy elements such as chromium. The oxygen passing through the molten metal picks-up a high percentage of the free carbon from the melt and leaves as Carbon Dioxide CO2.. this process can be termed "Destructive Distillation".... I think any size would do... but in the PAE... The basics are that the Coke is derived from "Metallurgical Coal" that is crushed to less 1/8" material and fed into sealed ovens that bake the impurities out at well above 2000F for a period of 24 hrs.. The oxygen is injected into the melt via a series of tuyeres with a mixture of the neutral elemental gas Argon. The typical size grade for commercial Cupola furnaces is 6" to 8". the Blast Oxygen process can be classed as a decarburizing process. but the material in the video clips is the best so far in the course. please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 3. Upon exposure to the air after opening the ovens Coke typically cracks or fractures. Since steel is essentially Cast Iron with a carbon content below 2%.

but with closer dimensional accuracy while improving surface finish over the previous method. The other benefit is higher production rates realized by the mechanization of the ramming process. Binder types . Advantages .illustrations for this Module as it would be a few days of work. the flask is rolled. split and the pattern extracted to leave a cavity into which the molten metal is poured.Each has unique properties relating to pH. higher labour cost associated with maintenance and training of staff and tighter quality control. The objective of these synthetic binders is to achieve greater binding strength. appropriate selection for alloy type.a wide range of metals can be cast with this method. strength and shake-out to be discussed later • • • • • • Alkyd Urethane Furan Sodium Silicate Acid Cured Phenolic Phenolic Urethane Phenolic Ester Skin-Dried & Dry Sand Molding . Part tolerances and dimensional accuracy may be lower than other types/methods requiring additional labour costs for finishing/machining of castings. Disadvantages . the process is scalable to higher production run requirements and the molding material (bonded Sand) is easily recycled..High-Density Molding This method employs mechanical ramming of bonded sands with either hydraulic or air pressure into the flask over the pattern. and likely wouldn't come close to the videos. where a re-usable pattern is placed in a flask. Disadvantages . rammed with sand.The complexity of the casting is limited by the requirement of draft. Alternative Sands This section describes the family of No-Bake or Quick-Set binders. The Ramming process can be termed either as a Jolt or Squeeze method. By using sand with a lower moisture content higher densities and mold hardness are achieved. the other flask half is applied. Conventional Molding . Conventional Molding . Advantages . parting lines and the ability to position cores.Again a diversity of Metal types can be cast. sand is rammed up.Higher capital cost of equipment.. The binder or Bonding material is a Polymer or Silica Gel that replaces the Clay & water combination found in the Green Sand family.Green Sand This is the traditional Cope & Drag Flask method. lecture note images or the text. the cost of materials and patterns is comparatively lower than other methods/types of mold making.

This process is well suited to the Aluminum.are Labour and material costs compared to Green Sand molding. This method is employed for medium to Heavy and Heavy castings. The sand typically has special bonding agents applied prior to drying such as GM Bond (presumably a proprietary agent developed by General Motors???) The Mold face exhibits superior mechanical strength.are Superior dimensional accuracy and surface finish. The metals to be cast generally are restricted to lower Melting Temp alloys due to the issues inherent in the handling and mechanization of high temp alloy handling. Gas or Oil Flame and the mold face can be washed with as refractory coating (so that's a refractory coating on a refractory type material???) Advantages . and better surface finishes due to the reduction mold moisture and/or the application surface coats. graphite.. and higher casting complexity. as well as reduced productivity due to the process being relatively slow. Advantages .The mechanical strength of the mold.Reduced Gas and Moisture . . but with the addition of heat to bake the mold at 400 to 600F.. and reduced production relative to Green Sand. cast iron. Copper or aluminum (mold material selection is based on the metal type to be cast) for repeated usage. housings etc.The primary purpose of Skin Dried molds is to reduce moisture and gas forming materials at the surface of the mold where the metal sand junction occurs. The pre-coated sand is applied to a heated pattern plate where the resin hardens to form a shell that is approx 3/4" to 1" in thickness. and a stronger mold. This process is employed for medium to heavy castings such as gears. The 2 halves of the mold are glued together with an appropriate adhesive. ie porosity/pinhole gas defects. tighter dimensional accuracy. Advantages . this is the end of the "Conventional Molding types Precision Molding and Casting Permanent Mold . while retaining comparible "Shake-out" characteristics to Green Sand molds. cost of operation. the baking process allows for greater mechanical strength. Disadvantages . Disadvantages .. reduced production rates due to drying process of molds. Dry Sand Molding This is the Green Sand process. The Surface can be dried with either Hot Air. Shell Molding or Croning Process This process uses a heat activated Resin/Catalyst combination with silica sand.Gravity feed This class of mold is typically made of tool steel..are the capital cost of Bake Ovens.Capital and labour costs. Disadvantages . Zinc and Magnesium family of alloys.

This type of process is further divided into 2 (two) variants Static and Tilt Pouring. This process also exhibits superior dimensional accuracy and surface finish over the Shell process just discussed. High Pressure Molding This is a High Volume casting process for low-temp alloys that offers superior dimensional accuracy and complexity of castings. Advantages . Investment Casting This class of molding describes the process of "Investing" a pattern in a suitable molding material. Disadvantages . Lost Wax Process A wax duplicate of the desired casting is created to be invested into a "Ceramic Slurry".The mold is stationary along a fixed plane while the molten metal is poured into a sprue. this semi-rotational action allows for more complex mold creation then possible with a static mold. Static Pour . Low Pressure Mold This method employs a feed mechanism that exerts a 5 to 15 PSI head on the molten metal forcing it into the mold.Castings are limited to typically 75lbs and require additional QC procedures to avoid Porosity defects. Advantages . It should be noted that an Aluminum casting with a wall thickness of 5/32" or greater is achievable with this method.Good dimensional accuracy and casting complexity compared to previous methods discussed and better economy of scale on a per casting basis (beyond the initial tooling cost recovery) Disadvantages .Low cost of castings when extended across very large production runs with part complexity. The Pattern is typically burned out of the mold leaving a cavity that molten metal can then be poured into. Tilt Pour . This class also can be divided into 2 (two) classes Cold Chamber & Hot Chamber processes. the slurry covered investment can be dipped into alternating coatings of sand & slurry until a suitable thickness of shell is achieved that can hold the molten metal after the investment is burnt out. stringent Mold Design requirements and the Very High cost of tooling and equipment that must be extended across high volume production runs to recover the initial costs. The Metal is injected into the mold at pressures up to 5000PSI (5.are typically the capital cost of equipment and Mold production.000PSI that's high!!!) with such pressures the susceptibility of porosity defects is increased. surface finish and dimensional accuracy at a high level. . as well as the restriction of alloys that can be cast.The mold is placed into a machine that can tilt back once the receiving cups/reservoirs are filled with molten metal.

simplified shakeout. The process is scalable from small to high production requirements and offers reduced finishing costs with exception surface quality.. ease of sand recovery and as mentioned 0.The "Burn-Out" process requires that the investment and coating are inverted in an oven that is fired to 1800F so that the investment can flow out and be recovered.. just fantastic. and the Refractory is cured the mold is removed and poured immediately while it is still hot.Pattern coating requires additional labour and material costs. but especially when handling sand that has burnt EPS covering the grains.120" wall thicknesses.High level of accuracy and flexibility of design due to no draft.. Evaporative Pattern Casting This is it.. patterns require care as they can be fragile due to construction. Disadvantages . The vibratory motion creates a degree of fluid movement within the surface of the sand that is able to completely fill all crevices.. and is a great process that has served me well. (I have concerns to the contrary) Disadvantages . Once the investment is lost. text and videos all specify the use of a refractory coating. Strict safety procedures to be followed when handling loose sand post pouring. Once the pattern (and refractory coating) is completely held in a container of sand. Advantages . The strong chemical stench of the sand screams of future respiratory ailments if caution is not exercised (personal observation & belief) . parting lines and the ability to mold under-cuts previously impossible with other techniques.include a physical limitation on the size of the casting as determined by the strength of the cured ceramic slurry (even when backed by sand) and a higher material and labour cost (which can be offset by savings in finishing and machining). The heat of the molten metal evaporates the foam in it's path and accurately fills in behind the foam as it advances down through the pattern. The slurry is air dried or in a low temp oven (but the foam pattern is retained).) coreless molding. the metal is poured into the sprue. very high casting complexity. The refractory coating is also cured in this procedure.. Advantages . LFMC (Lost Foam Metal Casting) where it all started for me.. comparatively low capital and operating investment. The Video and notes reflect this as a relatively environmentally benign process.. or invested into a ceramic slurry. the pattern receives a sprue or feeder system (also of EPS) and can be either placed directly into loose dry sand. Patterns are produced in EPS (Encapsulated Polystyrene). The last item applies to all loose sand handling with regard to the hazards of Silicosis. The vapourized EPS is vented into the loose sand through the refractory coating (if used). Of note is that the Lecture notes. Castings with wall thickness of 120 thou" that's 5 thou less than an 1/8" are possible. openings and orifices thus removing the requirement of otherwise complex cores. In either case the pattern is surrounded by loose dry sand that is being constantly agitated by a vibratory mechanism as the sand is added to the container that holds the pattern. but I know for a fact that it can be omitted with a minor degradation in surface finish and complexity of casting. under-cuts.are (but not limited to.

I think a legitimate concern. . eutectic solder paste has a composition of 63% tin (Sn) and 37% lead (Pb).. The transition of phase (from Liquid to Solid) is called the "heat of fusion" and is represented as unit measure energy as a function of unit measure weight (of element or solution) released at transition unit measure temperature (s) of solidification... 144BTU of energy transfer occurs to change 1 pound of water into 1 pound of ice at 32F. Solidification of Metals. This following level of detail is not required to make castings.. an eutectic alloy would be the alloy of 2 or more elements that combines to a lower melting point than any of the constituent elements For example. Metals in Solid Solution type alloys: A single solid homogeneous crystalline phase containing two or more chemical species The definitions above are far from useful. Eutectic being a particularly difficult concept for me to fully understand. and Steve Chastain's Sand casting Manual Vol 1 & 2 is yet another perspective. Ipso Facto Ergo Sum. Properties of Thermal Transfer within a Casting The application of thermal energy transfer theory to metal casting requires consideration in the following properties. and has a eutectic temperature of 183ºC (straight from google).. but I fear that more practical information will be based on a sound understanding of this. presumably on a much larger scale. similarly Eutectic alloys exhibit finer grain sizes than the pure metal and precipitate 2 or more phases simultaneously (this will be revisited). for the context of alloying. with enough variation in presentation to make the idea's less vague. Assigned Text (Chapter 13 Not 7 as noted in the course notes).. This chapter is primarily concerned this what happens after that metal actually is poured into a mold. When a metal is poured a similar energy transfer occurs between the metal mold interface.. Beyond the lecture notes... Google is proving to be fantastic.this is the end of Course notes for Module 2 MATL MTB70. The energy is transferred from the Liquid water to the air... please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 4.. The process of solidification. and how the alloy being poured impacts the process as well as the mold material's affect.. The metal being poured can be considered in terms of a... earth what ever. The idea of a solid Solution Alloy would be every other combination of Lead (Pb) and Tin (Sn) that is not the Eutectic with exception of 100% Lead (Pb) & 0% Tin (Sn).. through a series of transitions. Water is a classic example.. and obviously 0% Lead (Pb) & 100% Tin (Sn). which would be pure metals. Pure Metal: Single element metal with a clean phase transition between liquid and solid Eutectic Alloy: The alloy which has the lowest melting point possible for a given composition.

as the volume of metal is decreasing in relation to the percentage of metal that has solidified. so the composition. gates and risers) determines the amount of energy that must be transferred to complete the phase transition from liquid to solid. Molding Material is the recipient of the energy being transferred. as it is related to the surface area of the metal-mold interface. gates. mold. shape. In closing the process of "Directional Solidification" is accomplished by orienting the Sprue. sprue. there is an expectation that the casting will be proportionally smaller than the pattern from which it was cast. and the weight of the metal remains constant. The manner in which the casting solidifies (as determined by the alloy. runners. but the idea is to position the defect in the riser not the casting itself. As the energy is traveling in one direction the solidification process is traveling in the opposite direction. the energy transfer continues through the layer of solid metal toward the mold material. size.The shape and size of the casting. The source of liquid metal is from the Risers that act as reservoirs to feed the casting during the solidification phase. The "Pattern-Maker's Ruler" is found in most every pattern shop to accurately scale the pattern for a given alloy to the required solidified dimensions. the volumetric displacement must be reduced to raise the density of a specific qty of metal. . Directional Solidification The solidification process begins at the mold-metal interface. Metals typically have a lower density when molten then when solid. pattern and risers such that the thinnest sections through thickest are forming a wedge that ends with the riser(s) being the thickest section The image to the right certainly is overly simplistic but illustrated the basic idea. gate. thin sections of castings will solidify before thick sections of the casting. The size of the casting (including sprue. This is a predictable result and the percentile increase in pattern size to achieve an accurate cast size is a prerequisite to useful castings. runner and riser system combine to either yield a dimensionally correct casting or one that has defects such as gross shrinkage cavities (pipe) or dispersed porosity. As density is a function of weight and volumetric displacement. As molten metals typically have a lower density. The shape and complexity of a casting influences the efficiency with which the thermal transfer occurs. a source of liquid metal has to be drawn upon to keep the casting dimensionally accurate. This is accomplished by gate and runner placement such that the thinnest sections cool first and the placement of the risers ensure a source of molten metal. Logically. unlike water that has a lower density when Solid (frozen) than in it's liquid state (Ice Floats). Physical Dimensioning through the Phase Transition. runners. Essentially there will always be a cavity defect. meaning the entire outer skin of the casting. thermal characteristics and density of the material also influence the solidification process of a given casting.

and the freeze wave propagates over a continuum in a semi-linear fashion. The liquid Metal has a Volume "A". with the understanding that the left section continues on toward an even thicker section. but the minor variations in volumetric displacement are negligible compared to the variances that occur from "A" to "B" and lastly to "C". Obviously the world around us is in constant dimensional change as the ambient temperature is always in a state of (when will it end???) The basic concept is the formation of crests and troughs within the leading edge of the solidifying metal as it propagates through the liquid metal. subsequent section(s) takes this conceptual idea and illustrates it in more accurate detail.. and does not have such exaggerated demarcation points. the Glossary of terms simply refers to directional solidification. Lastly The concept of a Freeze Wave is allegorical in nature only. . The right most end of the cross-section has a greater surface of mold/metal interface and is not only growing inward from the top and bottom but also from the right. So the inequities of the college system of Ontario again falls on the shoulders of theworkshop.More complex castings would require additional risers and supporting runners and gating. and lastly the solidified casting further contracts (shrinks) through the cooling process (Starting at Temperature of solidification through to ambient temperature) settling on Volume "C". Progressive Solidification Although the lecture notes clearly state that this term must be understood. as it solidifies it shrinks during the phase transition to solid and reflects a new volume "B". Three Stages of Contraction (Shrinkage) This is a complex time in the life of a casting.. The ideal in the illustration to the right is that over time the wave grows from the right toward the left... Also of note is that the points in time A. B & C are for illustration.

. The speed of solidification has a direct bearing in such issues as grain size within the solid casting. the individual elements potential can solidify at varying rates creating concentrations or isolated pockets of that element within the liquid solution during the phase transition. This is mathematically a function of the casting thickness (assuming a flat surface) against the sq root of time as well as the introduction of a Constant "K". mold materials etc.. and the point of fusion has been expanded to cover a range of temperature drop over the energy dissipation.. As an Alloy has 2 or more constituent elements.. we can influence the speed at which solidification occurs.... I personally would have preferred Zonis Indeterminus. Two new terms are introduced "Liquidus & Solidus" that denote the points in the graph where phase transition begins and ends for the solidification process. Shrinkage and associate defects. Curiously the area between Liquidus & Solidus has a rather mundane name "Mushy Zone". the point to start at is with a pure elemental composition. The lower right illustration is of an alloy.In Consideration of Pure Metals Although the vast majority of castings produced are alloys of varying elemental composition... through the use of molding material... The blue line shows the point of fusion with a predictable dissipation of energy with no drop in temperature until the solidification process has completed. Pure metals exhibit ideal solidification characteristics and introduce a point of reference when consideration of solidification is turned to alloyed compositions.. as well as a new issue "Segregation".. The solidification rate can be graphed for various alloys. I've opted to pass on the diagrams and the math as it's not an essential building block (or so I hope). and orientation of casting components. such as risers etc. The illustrations to the upper right depict a pure metal and the flat thermal property of solidification.. . or Soliqus. Control of the Solidification Rate By understanding the factors associated with the solidification process.

. we know that the nucleation of dentrites will form and grow in opposition to the energy flow inward making a mushy zone that is being impregnated by dendrite growth. If directional solidification is encouraged though proper placement of Sprue.. Grain Structure and Growth The illustrations are getting looser and dirtier as we go along here.. Since the majority of castings are alloys (2 or more elemental constituents) the dendrite growth will be displacing higher point of fusion elements into the liquid or mushy center. millions of nucleus form near simultaneously. At this point get a beer. This cross-section is supposed to illustrate the region of solidification from the mold wall upward to the liquid/solid interface. have a smoke and review the disjointed factoids presented thus far.. At the base of the structure to the right are fine grains that formed very quickly at the metal-mold interface.. This segregation of constituents impacts grains size and composition. The energy transfer between the liquid and solid interface is conducted through this dendrite structure toward the metal mold interface. in the center are longer "Columnar" grains that form directionally in opposition to the energy flow of the point of fusion. and this is the freeze wave discussed earlier. B) is the extension of the Primary axis into the molten metal C) is the formations of secondary axes at right angles to the primary Axis D) is the extended growth of the now complete dendrite with ever thickening branches and trunks as seen in E. gates. toward the top are smaller random "Equiaxed" grains that form at a slower rate.Solidification Modeling The illustration on the right has 5 steps shown A thru E.. So. runners and Risers. .. A) is the initial nucleus that forms on the smallest scale as the outermost skin of molten metal enters the Mushy Zone by the energy transfer between the moldmetal interface.. but at least I know what I'm trying to depict. The crystalline or lattice structure is growing by the solidification of the molten metal.

such as introducing wet charge materials into the melt. lecture text & audio (No video) This is a helluva way to start Module 5. The elemental nucleation and dendritic growth displaces molten elements and results in micro porosity. super-heating metals beyond their melting temperature. please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 5. Gases can be scavenged from the molten metal by introducing either an inert gas such as argon or nitrogen and bubbling it through the melt. and to avoid holding the metal in a molten state any longer than is required. Design of Risers and Feeding of Castings References . In summary the faster the better... or using a solid such as chlorine with an inverted cup that will plunge the chlorine to the bottom of the melt.. Chastain's Foundry manual Vol 2.. the third is the equiaxed zone of small random grains in the center of the casting. As the chlorine turns to a gas it will form hydrogen chloride. But I'm going to just put my shoulder to the yoke and bull through in the hopes that it makes sense before I'm done the module. I think that this is what Metallurgy & Heat treating will be based upon. except that columnar grains are stronger and contain a better elemental distribution through the alloy. it is best to avoid. or poor foundry practices. The generalization that wide mushy zones (slow phase transitions) promote Equiaxed Grains and micro segregation. The next is the columnar zone that are longer directional grains that grow toward the liquid metal. The most obvious porosity defects are caused by the entrapment of gases within the molten solution.AFS Text Chapter 16 (not 8). while narrow mushy zones (fast phase transitions) promote columnar grain structures is still somewhat meaningless. Google. . To reduce the absorption of gases from the atmosphere leave any slag or dross cover over the molten metal until just prior to pouring into the mold. Typically hydrogen precipitates into melts by contact with the atmosphere. (as this is being repeated it has to be on the final exam) Mold-Metal interface is the chill zone with fine grain structure.. .this is the end of Course notes for Module 4 MATL MTB70. Since Hydrogen is highly soluble in molten metal.. scavenging the hydrogen in the process. And again. Since any given alloy has a static Mushy Zone based upon it's composition and the mass of the casting. the only variable that can influence grain formation and reduce elemental segregation is the time required to transfer the point of fusion energy. Porosity Defects The most subtle of the porosity defects is caused by alloyed melts that have a wide mushy zone transition phase to solid.The Alloy composition is impacted by the thermal gradient of the mold-metal interface and the efficiency with which it can transfer the energy released by the point of fusion of the elemental constituents.

molds and especially Risers. It would stand to reason that the lowest SA:V Ratio would have the slowest cooling rate (a desired attribute for a Riser).05 + 1. and I'm not changing the diagram. http://www.. The College's link to a library of mathematical equations is The Surface Area to Volume Ratio is an important consideration when designing patterns. but would make for a fast cooling casting (if that flexibility exists for a pattern design)... and influences directional solidification to produce castings with minimal porosity and shrinkage defects.Freeze Point Ratio (FPR) FPR=X=(Casting Surface/Casting Volume)/(Riser Surface/Riser Volume) EQ#2 . I'm hoping that we both know before this page is finished. This is largely accomplished by ensuring that the riser(s) are the last to solidify.12/y-0. Castings and Risers.Volume Ratio (VR) (Y Axis) VR=Y=Riser Vol/Casting Vol* *Note the riser volume is the actual poured vol..math2. The underlying theme here is Volumes.1887*r3 .ca has to haul their bacon out of the fire. There are relationships between all these items and values that will help in designing a complete mold that controls progressive solidification.. while a high SA:V Ratio would make a poor Riser. The following Exercise hopefully illustrates the SA:V Ratio of some basic geometric shapes. Note: All shapes have a common volumetric displacement of 1 cubic foot=1728 Cubic inches Shape #1 . Surface Areas.(FPR) Steel (from the lecture) X=0...1415 *r3 1728=4. EQ#1 .. The link below hopefully will be a good start for finding specific equations.. 2 & 4) there is no Equation 3.Sphere Volume=(4/3) [pi] r3 1728=(4/3)*3.0* *Note: Don't ask where the constants are from. EQ#4 . so again theworkshop.I've simplified the diagram to the right by putting in references to the equations (EQ 1.

5384=r3 At this point I believe that r = the cubed root of 412.8379 r=6.1415 * r2 * 12 1728/3.5438/1728=0.Cylinder of Height 12" Volume=[pi] r2 h 1728=3.5384 r=7.csgnetwork..44422 Surface Area =93..4442 The link below should offer an on-line Cube/Cube Root Calculator www. the calculator at the link below does.5438 Inches2 And Finally the Spherical SA:V Ratio 93.1415 * 12= r2 45..1887=r3 412.8379 = r2 again I believe that r = the square root of 45.1728/4.1415 * 6.4707 inches 2 And Finally the Cylindrical SA:V Ratio (with height 12") 798.1415* 6.csgnetwork.html Surface Area =4 [pi] r2 Surface Area =4 * 3.7703) * 12 Surface Area 2) + (2 * 3.7703 As an aside the generic Windows calculator does not perform Sqrt function (or as far as I found).0541 SA:V for a sphere Shape #2 . www.html Surface Area = 2(pi r 2) + (2 pi r)* h Surface Area = 2(3.4620 SA:V for a 12" tall Cylinder .1415 * 7.4707/

Cube of 12" Volume= L * W * H Volume = 12 * 12 * 12 Volume = 1728 Area= 6 a 2 Area= 6 * 12 2 Area= 864 inches 2 And again the Cubic SA:V Ratio (with height 12") 864//1728=0.4529 2) + (2 * 3.csgnetwork...3528 inches 2 And Finally the Cylindrical SA:V Ratio (with height 1") .5000 SA:V for a 12" Cube Shape #4 .1415 * 23.0394 r=23.1415 * 1= r2 550.1415 * r2 * 1 1728/3.Cylinder of Height 1" Now don't get all wrapped-up in semantics...1415* And still the generic Windows calculator does not perform Sqrt function (or as far as I found).. www.Shape #3 . but we both know a plate is just a very squat cylinder Volume=[pi] r2 h 1728=3. the calculator at the link below does..html Surface Area = 2(pi r 2) + (2 pi r)* h Surface Area = 2(3.4529) * 1 Surface Area = 3603. the exercise calls for a plate that is 1" thick.0394 = r2 again I believe that r = the square root of 550.

while a 1" tall cylinder would be somehow lacking in desirable riser properties. it should be noted that the contact point between the riser and the casting must be of sufficient diameter that it doesn't freeze before the casting and leave the riser performing no function. After writing the test and scoring rather poorly... it would be safe. I would guess that if the diameter was equal to or greater than the section it is connecting to the riser. or email me and I'll send it as an attachment. below is a link to the spread sheet that far better illustrates what's going on above numerically as well as in a graphical format. where t (riser) > t (casting) If you're not paying attention (like me) you assume that Solidification Time and SA:V are synonymous.3528/1728=2. one would think that a spherical riser would be the best (though somewhat impractical to implement)." the file is created with Excel sa-v calculator.4620 SA:V for a 12" tall Cylinder 0.. Proper Riser Positioning and Dimensioning With the knowledge of low SA:V riser geometry.0852 SA:V for a 1" tall Cylinder Given the generalization that opened the SA:V dialog. Below are 4 points about the Riser/Casting Relationship 1 .. I decided to revisit the math and the relationship between SA.5000 SA:V for a 12" Cube 2.0852 SA:V for a 1" tall Cylinder Below are the SA:V's of the 4 shapes to be compared 0. All of the above is in support of directional solidification.. as it is a practical shape for molding.Risers are attached to the heaviest sections of the casting 2 .... Right click on the link and select "Save As.0541 SA:V for a sphere 0... Put yet another way SA:V(Riser) < SA:V (Casting) The point above must be underscored as the lecture reflects an extrapolated rule of Solidification Time (t). Geometric shape and dimensioning.. they are inversely proportional (in an ideal world).3603. low SA:V's cool slowly and make good Risers.xls If the link doesn't work give me a couple of days I've never done this before.Risers are the last to solidify 3 .. As I'm generally as lazy as the next guy. V.A casting that has more than one heavy section requires at least one riser per heavy section . we must consider where we will place riser(s) to ensure proper directional solidification and dimensioning the riser to hold an adequate volume of liquid metal to feed the casting as it solidifies. I kinda like the cylinder.

4 - Occasionally the thermal gradient is modified at the mold-metal interface by the introduction of a "Chill" that can better conduct the heat away from the casting and lower the solidification time for that section. On the Subject of Thermal Gradients... Thermal gradients can be increased to facilitate faster, directional solidification, or lowered to allow sections to remain molten to reduce micro porosity within captive regions that can't be practically fed by risers otherwise. Thin sections of castings that have the potential to develop captive pools can be "Padded" to keep a path for directional solidification to follow. "Padding" is the result of thickening a pattern area for the sole consideration of Directional Solidification. Areas that are "Padded" may add machining costs to return the finished casting to it's original dimensional specification. Also thermal gradients can be modified through the use of "Chills", a chill is a material that becomes part of the mold either internally or externally (referring to the physical casting). External Chills - these can be a variety of materials with a greater ability to facilitate the energy transfer associated with the solidification process, relative to the molding material used through out the mold. The materials commonly used are (but not limited to) Iron, Steel, Graphite, Chromite and copper... these materials typically are inserted in to the mold and lay at the mold-metal interface. Internal Chills - are typically oriented to become part of the physical casting with a portion extending outward into the molding material to act as a path for thermal energy to rapidly move through, thereby facilitating the solidification process. Internal chills have issues associated with them that range from appropriate positioning through fusion with the casting material. The internal chill material must be compatible with the alloy being cast. Exothermic and Insulating Applications The last discussions in this module that relate to Riser Design and Feeding of Castings relates to the application of exothermic and insulating materials. These compounds are the opposite of the chill's previously discussed. Similarly they are NOT applied to the casting, but rather to the top of the riser. Insulation - As the name implies this material does not promote energy transfer, but inhibits it. This reduction of thermal energy transfer out the top of the riser, helps to maintain the riser as a source of molten metal to feed the casting for a longer duration. Exothermic - This compound goes one step further than insulation. The exothermic material generates heat that can maintain the riser at a molten state even longer than an insulation. The Exothermic material is placed on the top of the riser and is ignited by the molten metal as it contacts the Exo-material... ...this is the end of Course notes for Module 5 MATL MTB70, please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 6.

The Feeder Network
Now this is cool stuff, if you've been following along, A) I credit you with "Tenacity", upon rereading my notes, (Prep for the final Exam starts on Day One...) I personally think it's all interesting content, but I doubt that I'd have hung-on this long (especially the more theoretical parts like dendretic growth and nucleation sites etc...) But this is the meat of what I signed-up for... Gating / Runner Design With an overview of the solidification of metal(s) done, we can look at the flow characteristics of the metal as it enters the mold and how it fills the casting. Of the flow characteristics fluidity/viscosity plays a role as well as velocity, gravitational acceleration & vortex, pressure zones, molten alloy aspiration from the mold and the momentum or kinetic energy of a fluid. Although the lecture notes introduce these terms and their consideration over the duration of this module, it seems easier for me to group them at the start. Laminar Flow The factors and issues noted above are all related in some way to the property of "Laminar Flow." This is my Ideal "Laminar Flow" reference. The lake is fed from a water fall at one end and flows through a dam at the other. A drop of 30 to 40ft total with the lake sitting somewhere in the center. While drift fishing, your boat glides gently from one end of the lake to the other over the course of 5 or 6 hours. Though while passing through the narrows off in the horizon, the boat's drift may be up to 4 (four) times the velocity experienced at the widest portion of the lake.

I just thought this made a nice picture 20 years ago, but now I realize that this is "Turbulent Flow". The violent foaming bubbling action of the water is the result of "Aspiration" of the water. Perhaps on a smaller scale the forces that create this effect work identically in liquid metal and it's flow through the mold.

And after considerable searching I found this picture (taken with my first camera)... This illustrates "Severely Turbulent Flow". The water is cascading down a ladder of rocks, similar to a staircase with 6' to 7 ft' steps through a constrained chasm along the Niagara Escarpment. (though located a few hundred miles north east of Niagara Falls)

In summary Liquid Flow can be identified as Laminar, Turbulent or Severely Turbulent, just think of the images above if the names don't strike you as intuitive. The identification of the flow types has a mathematical component that removes the subjectivity of the names. The mathematical formula is known as the "Reynold's Number" . A Google "Define: Reynold's Number" yielded these links... The Reynolds number is the ratio of inertial forces, as described by Newton's second law of motion, to viscous forces. If the Reynolds number is high, inertial forces dominate and turbulent flow exists. If it is low, viscous forces prevail, and laminar flow results.

(After Osborne Reynolds (1842-1912), English scientist.) A non dimensional parameter representing the ratio of the momentum forces to the viscous forces in fluid flow.

the dimensionless ratio of fluid acceleration and accelerations induced by viscosity typical of a particular flow regime.

The dimensionless ratio used to determine whether the flow in a certain system is turbulent or laminar. Reynolds number is as follows: Rd = (Velocity x Diameter x Density)/Absolute viscosity I edited the list to show a consistent definition, as this law (of sorts) covers far more physics than the metal casting industry.

.. The only issue is to separate the base of the sprue from the Well. by having a pool of metal form the flow will be less chaotic than pouring from the crucible down into the sprue. There are a series of other calculations and formulas to place into context. The metal flows through the system in the order that they are listed. there may well be a point that denotes Turbulent and Severely Turbulent but our objective is to stay below 2000. that a pouring cup and pouring basin are not equivalents. I would ensure that there was at least one chunk to be saved after shaking out the castings and cutting away the feeder network. Could the dross-dam be just a solidified section of the same alloy being poured? I'm sure it should be pre-heated prior to placement. Flaws??? Issues??? beyond dimensional (over) compensation on the first pattern for the feeder network. while an Rn > 2000 is considered a Turbulent Flow.. The yellow bar that I've labeled as the "Dross-Dam" is positioned so that the molten metal will contact it's lower face and flow under.I think of this as the "Crucible -Mold Interface". . The following are some ideas I have about "Pouring Basins" If I had a standard "Basin Pattern" that I would mold into the Cope. Below are some simple diagrams to be familiar with. If I was careful to design my initial runner/gating system. As the lower portion fills and the metal is skimmed the clean(er) metal will rise up to meet the opening of the sprue in a more controlled fashion. but the idea is that the basin acts as a point for the liquid metal to enter the gating system in a laminar fashion. I think it would work. I have a source of Dams. Extract.. "Sprue". The lecture notes have better illustrations and the text better still. The area I call "Crucible-Mold Interface" is where the metal from the crucible first contacts the mold surface.. So after the first casting. with the idea that it would be the physical pattern for subsequent molds Plus a dross dam (to be cut away).. while skimming or holding back any dross from the crucible or what accumulated through the act of pouring.The demarcation point of an Rn < 2000 is considered a Laminar Flow. Basic Components of a Gating System The basic components of a gating system are "Pouring Basin". The Dross-Dams that I'm thinking about would be Sections of runners or gates from previous castings (of the same alloy). and core with a Dross Dam. so that the pattern(s) can be extracted. a Pouring Basin has several components that aid in creating a laminar flow of clean metal into the sprue. That area is lower than where the Mouth of the Sprue is located. So on a production run of (I typically do runs of 5 to 25 of a given casting). The pouring cup is simply a larger target when pouring out of the crucible. but I want to return to the gating system and it's components with the idea of laminar flow in mind... Similarly. "Runners" and the "Gates" that feed the casting. note. Pouring Basin .

4 . So a mass falling has a velocity of 384 inches/sec after a free fall duration of 1 entire second. I see the benefits of 1 ..Integrated Dross-Dam 5 . I realize that these may be single use items. Sprue Placement and Parts The sprue is obviously the extension of the sprue mouth into the mold. .Is it worth the effort to make Basins for placement of the same alloy as being cast. 2 . 3 .. and I'm sure as fuck not doing all this to turn out a low grade product. or possibly 2 to 3 uses max.Counter Vortex Rifling at mouth of Sprue. but I have been placing my sprue tapers in the wrong direction.. and counter clockwise in the southern hemi-sphere). plus it aids the formation of dross and gas pick-up in the stream that is going to feed the casting. None of the above promotes Laminar flow. Laugh if you .Possibly improved lamination of liquid flow over a smooth(er) surface. If you have any thoughts or advice (regarding the above) feel free to email me frnkgmbk@renfrew. The rotational effect. From the Pouring Basin.. The choke or narrowest point in the taper is a key variable in calculating other properties and sizing ratios of components.. This is considered the point that would sustain a "Head" or pressure of molten metal.. reducing excessive surface area development (dross-forming property) and gas pick-up.. the higher the quality of my work.. the flow begins a near vertical incline that is acted upon by gravity and with an accelerative force that is 32ft/Sec/Sec or 384 In/sec/sec. (this would be just 1 or 2 degrees to ensure that the "Head" developing at the base of the sprue developes smoothly. it was just easier to push the core inward for extraction. the more "Best Practices" I incorporate.Thermal energy source to reduce viscosity increase on contact (if pre-heated). Fluids in free fall tend to distort from a columnar shape at their start into an intertwined series of flow lines that have a rotational vector or vortex effect (Clockwise in the northern hemi-sphere.. Through all of the components there is a need to reduce turbulence and promote Laminar Flow. is causing the cork-screwing effect of the falling fluid. bear in mind I'm not trying to over complicate my life with additional work. though not a strong force. If allowed to act on the fluid over a great enough duration or free fall the centrifugal force will separate the flow into droplets. the fluid is constrained to retain it's shape. By creating a sprue with a taper.reduced mold-sand pick-up at the most turbulent point (Crucible to mold interface). but since this foundry is at such a preliminary stage..

2. the design objective is to promote laminar flow.The well depth is twice the runner depth. Again. The R-Ext also acts as a "Dross/Gas Trap" for any materials generated and picked-up along the flow of the runner. but is relevant to the discussion. By providing curved radius changes in direction the above effects are still at . and avoiding sharp or abrupt changes in direction. and can draw mold material (sand) into the flow. Below are some dimensioning ratio's from Chastain's Foundry Manual #2 this information is not likely to be on the module test or the final exam. None of this is good. 3. In the illustration. The "Runner Extension" is a "Dead-End" that is placed after the last gate. In the broadest terms this path should be "Balanced" with the model of heating or AC ductwork serving as a good illustration. low & high pressure zones that promote aspiration of mold gases into the flow.The area below the sprue is the "Well". notice that the runner becomes proportionally shallower at the point where an in-gate creates an alternate path for the liquid flow. The well reduces the velocity of the fluid flow and acts as a reservoir for the runners and gates as they fill. 1. The Runner System The runner system is fed by the well and is the path that the gates are fed from.. which forms a relationship to the Choke or base of the Sprue Area. An Ideal Runner is also proportioned such that it maintains a constant volumetric flow through virtually any cross-sectional area. The Gating System The Gates (in this case) accommodate a directional change in the fluid flow and deliver the metal to the Casting cavity. The R-Ext acts as a cushion to absorb the forward momentum or kinetic energy of the fluid flow. The Runner path should promote smooth laminar flow by a balanced volumetric flow. The issue of sharp corners (both inner and outer) create turbulence. The 2 (two) dashed blue areas when added together form a relationship to the dashed blue area of the Runner.Choke or sprue base area is 1/5th the area of the well.the Runner is positioned above the midpoint of the well's depth. or un-proportioned gate/runner sizes.. the primary causes of turbulence are sharp corners.

and more in-depth calculations for complex systems.uncompressible) V=Velocity of flow A=Area (Cross-section) . Although Computerized Flow Analysis programs are used extensively in large Foundry operations they are beyond the grasp of the small shop that is just starting out (if you know of a Flow Simulator that is freeware or in the Public Domain definitely email but at a reduced level. I stripped a lot of the detail and formulas to have the basic flow better illustrated.) Also.. Continuity Equation . but the math below hopefully offers some insight into quick approximations for simple designs. This formula only works if the fluid flow is a liquid that does NOT compress (that applies to all molten metals).75" by .. Q= Rate of Flow (Constant .This formula allows calculation of cross-sectional Areas.. relative to flow Velocity and Volumetric flow over unit time. To the right a flow passes through Cross-sectional area A1 (1" by 1". and due to the uncompressible nature of the fluid resolve velocity at known cross-sectional areas. The image to the right is from the Lecture notes (Mohawk College MATL MTB-70 Mod 6) and is just too good a representation to pass-up. the passage expands to a cross-sectional area A3 (1" by 1". 1 sq"). while the gates closest to the sprue would feed the least. I imagine that designing on a state of the art system without at least the most basic concepts or background is akin to dual entry ledger accounting without 4-function math skills. Formulas. In an unproportioned system the furthest gates would feed the most metal. a more uniform flow is promoted with near equal volumes of metal entering the mold from all points. the passage narrows to a cross-sectional area A2 (. and intuitive on a conceptual level.. By proportioning the gating system. 1 sq"). The best analogy I can see is that of a performance tuned exhaust system or header on an engine. Ratios and Design Equations Everything covered so far is comprehensible. Similarly sharp angles impact the solidification process and may inhibit "Directional Solidification" with cross-sectional freezing.5625 sq").. (this is counter to what I initially thought). 0. The Continuity Equation can resolve for any term if 2 others are known..75".

25 cubic inches per Sec of flow. is simplified with the use of ratios as the velocity is inversely proportional between any 2 adjacent ratio values. ie H : L equates to an increase in velocity while a L : H equates to a drop in velocity.If Q were 0. Q=0. The ratios between the cross-sectional Area can be grouped into either Pressurized or Unpressurized. While Areas A4 & A5 are added together as flow does pass through these points simultaneously. .. I believe that this example would resolve to a pressurized flow of 1 : 0..75 : 0. a system where the gate and runner cross-sectional areas are either equal or less than the choke cross-sectional area.5625=0.75 Sq Inch A3 = 2nd Runner X-Sec Area = 0. Pressurized .25/1 or 0.33 Sq Inch Areas A2 & A3 do not get added as they are positioned in line with each other and flow is successive between the points and not simultaneous. Choke : Runner : Gate Ratio(s) The base of the Sprue and Choke are the same thing. 1:2:4 1:3:3 1:4:4 1:4:6 An exception is noted in Chastain with a 1 : 8 : 6 ratio to promote dross capture in the runner system of Areo-Space castings.66 Unpressurized .25/0.The key distinction is that the Runner must have a X-sec area greater than the Choke. and it would appear that the Gate(s) would equal or be larger than the Runner(s).66 Sq Inch A4 = 1st Gate = 0.33 Sq inch A5 = 2nd Gate = 0.25"/sec. Chastian's Vol 2 are. the velocity has to almost double. text. A1= Choke = 1 Sq Inch A2 = 1st Runner X-Sec Area = 0. at the point A2..44"/sec of Flow. Common Ratio's noted in the lecture notes. Since the Area is almost half. The Continuity Eq.

Blast Cleaning Types .And yet again I'm telling you.this is the end of Course notes for Module 6 MATL MTB70. (no time to post here) . Media include but are not limited to the following. Keppler. etc.... Cutting & Fettling the Casting . rolling drums this active impacting or hammers to break away the molding material.. If you feel at home.. Chastain's Vol 2 has much more math and calculations. Once the casting is free from the mold. the surface can be cleaned with wire brushes manually or mechanically (for softer alloys) or a series of blasting techniques available for harder alloys. which is harder to control at a high velocity than a relatively lower velocity. Water Blast cleaning eliminates many of the respiratory hazards associated with the Air Blast methods. corn husk. • • • Angular Sand or Grit (beware Silicosis!!!) Shot . Mechanical Blasting poses similar respiratory hazards as air blasting but the delivery mechanism of the media is not through a blast of air. it's Laminar Flow. but introduces the requirement of adequate cleaning of the effluent or discharge water after use before releasing to a "Grey Water" destination. Water & Mechanical are used to clean any remaining sand or scale from the surface. The media is discharged by a paddle-wheel of sorts with adequate velocity that it impacts the casting with an abrasive action. Cleaning and Inspection This is the last stage of the casting process before the finished unit is ready for the Finishing process (Not covered in this Module). All methods of air blast should be conducted within proper enclosures to eliminate (not reduce) operator health & safety hazards.typically a round media including a variety of ceramics and metals Soft Media . Cleaning This stage actually starts with the shake-out process.. please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 7.. Newton and the lads. with Galileo. These processes also include removing any residual Core material. there are vibrating tables. Air Blast cleaning is an efficient method that can utilize a broad range of Media that are selected by the degree of abrasion required to clean the casting and the softness of the alloy. Beyond simply dumping the mold and pulling the casting.Air..such as walnut shell.

. Obviously these tests are carried out on sample(s) that would be representative of a casting run. Where I would not cast 6 plaques and destroy one randomly for fear that it requires 1250lbs of force to break it and it broke at 1247lbs. The speed and easy of inspection lacks any record keeping and may be subjective or inconsistent if performed by personnel of varying experience. either it is kept or re-melted. though I personally have never repaired a casting.) as well as shears and cutting torches. and typically where the casting is being used in an application that requires very strict quality control such as vehicular applications. These would include cutting castings through cross-sectional areas in pursuit of Sub-surface porosity defects. there are a number of methods ranging from a manual hack saw through to a plasma cutter. though cleaning is required regardless. Any Company that would like to send such a unit would never regret the gesture as I'd sing your praise from the highest hills.. I believe (perhaps naively) that ever employ on the payroll has the right and the responsibility to scrap a piece at any stage of processing if they know the end product will not meet the highest standard. Circular Saws (of various orientations including This is becoming more common place as technological advances are made. The lecture notes specify the option of repairs to castings at this point as well. the methods that are discussed are.. Destructive & Non-Destructive Inspection Destructive inspection.The casting is inspected visually every step by every person that touches the unit. in terms of quality blades (that can only last up to 10 Castings with 3 to 6 gates in my experience). though not a component of this module is worth talking about briefly.. The Fettling process is the removal of fins or minor deformations with some mix of manual and machinery assisted labour..cfm . Non-Destructive Inspection is a process that can be performed on a casting numerous times and leaves the casting in such a state that it can proceed to the finishing stage if found to be within specifications. measuring tensile and shearing strength of castings as well as impacting various surface areas to determine hardness. Currently I use a Sawz-All reciprocating saw and have shaved the per casting cutting time by 2/3rds to 15 min typically.pennnet. Castings that are obvious defects should not even be cut away unless necessary for re-melt. Note do-not cut non-ferrous alloys with abrasive disks (just don't. I believe that this time could be further reduced by 2/3rds again to 5 min with a Plasma Cutter with the appropriate nozzle selection. Table and Chop) ensuring that the appropriate blade is matched to the alloy. This method is has a labour cost associated with it. The manual method is a tremendous amount of work and has a tangible expense associated with it.. Machine Vision is a promising technology that incorporates high resolution cameras that feed image data to a comparative processor that can actual gates or arms to discharge castings into a scrap pile or pass them down a conveyor for further processing.. The casting is removed from the feeder network. Depending on the alloy there are numerous power tools that can be used including Band Saws. For tons of detail on this exciting technology (and man is it ever EXCITING!!!) http://vsd. though is comparatively low. Visual Inspection .....Obviously is Surface Quality comparison to a reference or based on the experience of the person performing the inspection. I use a hammer and a 4 1/2" angle grinder with a Zircon Flap-disk..

. the wave is reflected and the reflection is examined on a display. as the range or spectrum of detection of a sensor can be tailored to significantly extend beyond the range of the human eye. the penetrant is wiped away and the casting is inspected for residue that has properties that make for easy inspection or detection.. as well as lends it's self to automated and archival processing.25" below the casting surface. In this case the medium the wave propagates through would be the casting. The cost and intellectual overhead of implementing such a system is significant.This process is limited to Ferrous castings and requires less overhead than the name implies. Magnetic Particle Inspection (MPI) . I'd think about implementing some sort of PACS or Picture Archive Communications System.This inspection system works on the same principles of Medical Ultra Sonography. Personally I think that this process also would lend itself well to a Vision Systems solution. USI does require reasonably flat and or smooth surfaces for the transducer to propagate and receive the reflected waves. in that it can be performed faster. The chemical composition of the effective dye(s) requires specific handling procedures that will be available off their respective MSDS. Ultrasonic Inspection . requires fewer material specific handling considerations. potential for residual magnetism in the casting. An energy or acoustic wave is propagated through a medium via a transducer. This inspection system offers superior sub-surface analysis than other processes listed so far. An EMF (Electro Motive Force) is induced in the casting (Ferrous or Non-Ferrous) and the induced EMF is read by an inductor that is sensitive enough to supply detailed information that is analyzed and displayed. The reflected wave can indicate a properly formed casting or identify internal fractures or structures that could not be otherwise found. the fundamental process is the application of a magnetic field to the casting. offers less clean-up. The noted drawbacks are the limitation of testing to Ferro-Magnetic castings. This process offers very rapid analysis of casting integrity.This is an emerging technology that is similar to both US and MPI.. and this process does not work well with coarse grained castings due to reflection by the grain structure. a higher intellectual overhead in terms of training and competency of staff as well as a measure of casting cleaning (though still less than LPI). coating the surface with a magnetic particle compound and examining the retained particles for markers that would denote fractures or inclusions in the casting by the distribution of the adhering particle matter. and can detect defects up to 0. MPI offers advantages over LPI. Also of consideration is the ability to records results for archival purposes and defect analysis.Liquid (Dye) Penetration Inspection (LPI) is a process that is able to detect narrow seams and cracks at or just below the surface of a casting by applying a liquid dye or phosphorescent dye. but a shop that makes under 1000 Aero-space grade parts that require "Mission-Critical" tolerances and verifiable inspection documentation. Eddy Current Inspection (ECI) . This is definitely not for smaller foundries.

Much Like USI is based on the medical practice of Diagnostic Imaging via X-Ray and the imaging of the x-rays that passed through the medium on to film. losing it's shape.this is the end of Course notes for Module 7 and MATL MTB70. density and/or atomic weight of the cross section being examined... True there are savings. any radiology system being install today MUST BE digital. Film is being replaced with Crystal cartridges that can be digitized and erased for re-use. This area has undergone Radical change over the last 10 years. lecture audio. though systems are spec'd based on qty of images processed and the number of image acquisition points (X-Ray station) and the number of view stations for radiographic interpretation.. "Daddy. The popularity of sand as a molding material is due to it's abundance and relatively inexpensive cost. Since Sand Molding is done with Sand. Similarly digital radiology techniques have developed to the point that through digital filtering of image data information is made available that could never have been detected with traditional film and watch for other courses that are part of this same program. text and 5 video segments. handling and filing (for archival purposes) far out weighs the other savings.ECI can diagnose and identify grain structure and offer a level of elemental composition that USI can-not at this time. thank you for taking the time to visit theworkshop.. lets generalize that most sands have a melting point above 3000F. Although the temptation exists to develop an archival data structure in house to save on costs.. ABOUT SAND Whutz-Up with Sand? Since Molten Metal is hot.. . These notes are based on AFS Text Chapter 18. chemicals and processing. you can't afford it. If you have to ask what the cost is. and the utility of the mold is the space that it does not consume.. If you are creating castings that have a requirement for Radiographic Inspection. Since High Temperature is a subjective term. you'll likely be called upon to produce sample images to the customer's QC dept. Since sand is generally a ceramic based material it typically has a strong inter atomic bonding structure that contributes to it's ability to withstand high temperatures before breaking down. size etc. The savings are always touted to be on the cost of the film.. Radiography . the mold material has to withstand the heat of the metal without melting. but the labour associated with processing.. The X or Gamma rays are absorbed or modified by the thickness... the sand must not melt and it's physical dimensioning should remain intact.. My guess is that this won't be cheap. where does sand come from?" . an open architecture approach should be adopted to facilitate data sharing between the foundry and customers.

67 Bulk Density 95-97 Thermal Expansion 0. Melting point.19 4600(2538) Ziron White 4. Of the numerous properties the most important are Shape. Olivine.27-3. terms and ranges of measurement used in this course.82 MgO 0.018 Temp Reaction Acidic (pH) Shape Varied Olivine 41.5 156-165 0.34 19. Thermal Expansion.37 96-103 0.0083 Basic Angular Chromite 1. but all sands have their common origin in the fact that they are granular material resulting from the disintegration or crushing of rock. and casting sand falls into a broad range of grain sizes that span 2mm to 0.03 0. .75 45.1 0. why the fuck do you think I re-typed it (it's in the text.0016 TiO2 0..4 1.031 Cr2O3 ZrO2 Al2O3 0.8 7.0037 Slightly Acidic Rounded This chart is important.6-4. I believe that like the infinite constant Pi all answers to this module are contained within the chart above..019 CaO 0. The four basic sand compositions discussed in this course are Silica..05mm.65-2. 1/12" to 1/500" or #10 to #200 Mesh screening.03 3800(2093) Chromite Black 4..7 152-183 0.94 0..049 Fe2O3 0.34 8.0045 Basic/Neutral Angular Ziron 33. These types of sand have various properties that effect their application to the broad spectrum of foundry work.50 0.3-4.012 Melting Point F(C) 3110(1710) Properties Silica Colour White/Brown Specific Gravity 2. Sand Chemistry & Property Table Composition % Silica SiO2 98. it's in the lecture.2 49. The Chemical composition of these sands provides some insight into why the other properties are attributed to the various types.2 3400(1875) Olivine Green 3.5 65 1 0.8 21. Of the various bodies that influence and advise the metal casting industry the AFS (American Foundry Society) will provide the standards.I'm glad you asked. Ziron and Chromite. The AFS states that sand is "Mineral Material" regardless of chemical composition. Weight (measured by Bulk Density and Specific Gravity) and pH. The following charts are based on AFS data listed in AFS pub "Technology of Metal Casting" ISBN #0-87433-257-5. it's a slide. Sand has many sources and compositions. it's even referred to in the audio files and I think references are made to it in the video clips)..

Florida and California.. Key Info.. an angular shape and basic/neutral pH. Peter deposit. Melting point 3400F/1875C.004"/inch. but I will note that it is used in Steel foundries. as it comes from Africa. a varied shape and acidic pH. Low thermal Expansion 0.018"/inch. unpredictable thermal expansion and binding properties to name a few. Melting point 3110F/1710C. Lakes. Olivine Olivine Sand is an ortho-silicate of Magnesium (Mg) and Iron (Fe) and is found in it's natural state within Forsterite Mg2SiO4 and Fayalite Fe2SiO4(neither terms are overly relevant to this course) Except that Cast quality Olivine is only derived form 90% Forsterite. but is used occasionally in the Ferrous Sector to aid in the production of Manganese (Mn) Steel (Austentic) due to it's ability to overcome adverse chemical reactions that would result if Silica sand were used. and has a price tag to reflect its point of origin. river banks etc. but won't as it's not germane to this discussion... Key Info..0083"/inch. These organic and mineral contaminants effect castings in numerous ways including but not limited to introduction of carbon into the cast. Zirconium Silicate or ZrSio4 to his friends is found primarily in Australia. and as a facing or core material where it's superior thermal characteristics are called upon. Low thermal Expansion 0. Olivine sand is typically used in the Non-Ferrous foundry sector. an angular shape and basic pH. Melting point 3800F/2093C. The Forsterite is crushed to reduce the mineral to a granular form. Chromite FeCr2O4 This is an African Sand. rivers. High thermal Expansion 0. logically increasing the cost due to production of the material. In North America Pure Silica Sand is mined primarily in the Illinois and Missouri States from the St.Sand Type Verbiage Silica Silica is the most common sand type and can be found where ever water has had the time to erode rock to a granular form over time.. all other silica deposits tend to have varying degrees of organic and mineral contaminants that must be removed prior to classification as Casting Sand. Key Info. With the most stable thermal . Ziron This is the last of the four sand types and has the fanciest name. There is so much I could say about Chromite FeCr2O4.

Thank God the American Foundry Society stepped in and implemented a numeric scale that does away with all that inaccuracy. Rat's tails etc. scabs. Medium & Coarse" are somewhat vague and subject to interpretation in the abscence of some form of relativistic model. And another minor point that might be worth knowing Zircon has trace elements of Uranium and Thorium . The silica is considered to be in an Alpha Quartz State when below approx 2000F.. it has some characteristics that influence it's behavior when used within a mold. Melting point 4600F/2538C.. Just so you know. as the gfn is an AVERAGE!!! Why such a range??? Too coarse a gfn is reflected in the surface of the casting.. though it doesn't say specifically that the sand itself is hazardous.003"/inch.. And that's the point!!! Don't confuse individual grain Mesh #'s with AFS gfn.. he AFS scale typically covers 25 to 170 (according to the Text book) But I personally have never heard of anything less than 80 or 90 on the coarse side and have regularly heard of fine grains that top the 200 . Dispose of as the law tells you.. no big deal. too fine a gfn and the mold can't pass the gases from the molten metal during the pour and results in gas related defects. has issues with metals that approach and exceed 2240F in the form of "Wetting" the point where metal starts to cover the surface of the sand grain faces and Fluxes with of the 4 types it is used as a mold or mold facing material where very high temperatures are encountered and refractoriness becomes a consideration. an AFS gfn of 65 to 140 with 100 as the most common. The results of this expansion can be mold wall movement. Oh and before I forget.... but all will come clear in time.220 range.. Key Info...... Similarly Silica sand having a relatively lower melting point compared to the other sands. .) AFS Grain Fineness Number (gfn) & Grain Distribution Words like "Fine. Lowest thermal Expansion 0. So why all the hype on Thermal Expansion??? Although Silica Sand is the most common sand. Buckles. (I don't really get the fluxing part. as this is an average it may be somewhat deceptive.. The AFS gfn covers average grain size and distribution. that High refractoriness can aid in "Directional Solidification" if your a keener and can figure that stuff out when you make your mold.. above that temp it changes to a Beta Quartz state that is typified by significant expansion. an elliptical or rounded shape and slightly acidic pH.

Consider a tumbler of sand rotating on an inclined axis. distributed. Along with breaking-up the spent mold. then it would stand to reason that you would want that distribution to stay. the fines grains move to the bottom. The above illustrates examples of "Segregation" and will impact casting quality if the AFS gfn distribution is not retained... You've employed 100's of 1. As I said. spent binder material and any metallic refuse need to be removed. well.And again on a personal note.. Or just a conveyor that is dumping the sand into a cone shaped pile. You cast you first casting and now what??? You open your check book and hope that you can afford even more machinery to handle the task of Sand Reclamation!!! On the most basic level the spent molds have to be broken up to make the sands flow for molding in the next casting. Sand Handling So if your sand is a distribution of Mesh sizes that is averaged to an AFS gfn.. "Sand Fines" (sub-AFS gfn sized material that results from mechanical handling of the sand). And for high production foundries the sand has to be cooled prior to re-use if the production cycle is that rapid. and the coarse grains move to the top. Mechanical Reclamation Processes The following are examples of various methods of mechanically reclaiming spent mold sands..000's of dollars to ensure that the AFS gfn distribution is retained... Jaw Crusher Pneumatic Scrubbers Vibratory Reduction Shot Blast Reduction Mechanical Sand Scrubber .. I know from painful experience if you can't pass gas.. the fine grains typically will accumulate in the center of the cone rising vertically as the cone builds surrounded by coarser material rolling off to the sides and surrounding the base. you ensured that you ordered the right AFS gfn for the metal or alloy to be cast.. Sand Reclamation Man does this Module never end. there will be unpleasant results. get that check book out as it ain't gonna be cheap. So you have some sand. you selected it based on the type that suits your casting specifications.

sand types and binders precludes a definitive chart that can be referred to for selection. Sand Coolers All of the above should not aggravate the accumulation of "Fines" by excessively rough handling of sands. machine or transfer point to be tested. The odds of actually collecting exactly to the gram the amount required is very unlikely. I assume that the weight will be different for each foundry. though there are general guidelines but the variability of processes. The removal of metal(s) from the sand is also important as it will directly impact the refractoriness of the sand and casting quality and defects.. Ha!!!) To perform the test a predetermined qty of sand is removed from the batch. The sand is weighed to determine a start point or reference. .... AFS-gfn readings may be grossly inaccurate if an inappropriate test point provides the sample (refer to examples in Mod1 of sand separation due to handling). but once that qty is established all testing will be done with that target weight.gfn (Grain Fineness Number) Refer to previous Module for general info. Excessive amounts of cured resins that accumulate in the sand impact the LOI or Loss on Ignition rating of the sand. (details to follow . so it is best to get easily twice as much as you think will be the required weight.Heating Units to burn out residual binders . but those attributes are altered if the sand is literally broken by force during the reclamation process and result in a sand that is now round. for those unfamiliar with AFS-1101-0-S Sand should be acquired from a free-falling stream of sand by passing the container through the stream at a uniform speed..provided I pass the Lab. a sampling of the sand for AFS-gfn should be conducted to ensure that an appropriate grain distribution exists that will be consistent with expected quality of molds and ultimately castings produced. alloys.this is employed when dealing with chemically bonded sands that use a resin that has cured and can not be re-activated. Sands that are classed as angular impart specific properties to the mold and casting. Especially in a Jobber Foundry where various alloys are cast using the same sand if it suits the purpose. At some point within this module the first of a series of "On-Line Labs/Assignments will be completed" The MTB72 Mod 2 Lab is an actual AFS-gfn determination... clearly passing through without overflowing the container. AFS .. It should be noted that the Foundry determines what is an appropriate AFS-gfn to provide the appropriate molding properties and finished product for a given casting. beyond the typical checks to ensure that the proper qty and condition of the material reflects what was ordered. Always Follow AFS-1101-0-S specification to ensure consistent sampling. Quality Control practices should begin at the shipping dock when new unbonded sand arrives at the foundry.

56g (Split) 14. All the "Hold" bins are dumped together and weighed (check that the weight is as calculated) If there is a gross margin of error .. The initial qty of sand is divided over and over again.. The separator though simplistic is essential in retaining the grain distribution.25g (Split) 59.Lather...78g (Split) 7.78g (Discard) 7.5g (Split) 118. This is grounds for dismissal.12g was hit. Note: Do-Not attempt to simply scoop a bit of sand out by hand or with a spoon to adjust the weight between bins in an attempt to arrive at the Sample weight quicker. For your own piece of mind each bin can be weighed to ensure that the separator does indeed separate in equal parts. The above being said.24g is good enough for me & my staff.69g (Hold) Bin2 236.39g (Split) 3.12g (Split) 29.76g.12g (Hold) 29. consider this your written warning!!! The Diagram to the right illustrates a typical range of Sieve Mesh sizes used in an AFS-gfn test. Target sample weight 100g Split 1 Split 2 Split 3 Split 4 Split 5 Split 6 Split 7 Bin1 236. but have no interest in writing out a long précis on the theory of successive approximation.The illustration to the right is a rather lame and grossly inaccurate representation of a simple sand separator.. and weighed until by Successive approximation the target weight is arrived at.25 (Discard) 59. I know that I can repeat the thought process to determine the split/hold and discard points.. but more anal supervisors may demand greater precision. A series of evenly spaced slots alternatively direct the sand into Bins 1 and 2 respectively. obviously I've rounded back to 100th's of a gram and have pre-calculated the approximation value after the first sub-target split value of 59. measurement to within 0.5g (Discard) 118. Initial weight 473 Grams.. .. and assumed perfect division of the Split weights.56g (Hold) 14.69g (Discard) The 4 (four) Hold bins should total 99. Rinse and repeat..39g (Hold) 3. ie..

with a closed pan the bottom to catch any material that passes through the finest Mesh sieve.this is the end of Course notes for Module 2 MATL MTB72. According to the lecture notes. The Sieves have collars that surround the mesh and allow them to be stacked securely into a column. ... If a uniform size of rounded grains is compactly rammed. beyond the rather dry classification and assessment procedures employed within commercial foundries. Physical Properties of Sand This module will be considerably shorter than others posted as some of the material was already covered in Module #1... The solution is to use a distribution of varying grain sizes to fill-in voids to improve surface finishes. at is Even More. Unfortunately it also lacks any really exciting content.. The Column of sieves is placed into an agitator that securely holds the column and will apply a vibratory action on it to work the grains through the various mesh sizes. but not "the example".... (Since I haven't done the actual Lab yet...) It would seem that AFS-gfn is ranked as a 3. I'm a bit unsure but... but this listing can be considered an example. I think.. 4 or 5 adjacent sieves.. 4 or 5 sieve distribution (with the condition of at least 10% of the total sample weight is present on 3.NOTE: The word "Typical" implies that there may be other sizes that can be used for specific sand distribution ranges. and an added note that Silica Flour also can be used to increase mold densities.. This process run for approx 15 minutes to ensure that a thorough separation has occurred.. it would still have an equal volume of voids. please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 3. Bonded & UnBonded Sand . Ensure that all sieves are completely free of any sand or residue from a previous test before beginning.. if the size was reduced considerably (but remained consistent. The sieves are separated and the various distributions are weighed and documented. the total volume would still consist of approx 40% void space. Since that is the case it's likely that there is a minimum value as a percentage of the total sample size required to a AFS-gfn to be within or out of bounds of the expected value??? The point of grain size distribution is to strike a balance between voids and permeability of sand..

.. Better permeability than Angular. dried and filtered of impurities such as carbaceous materials and minerals that would adversely affect the thermal specifications of the sand. In a bonded state require less binder though with a reduced permeability.) Sizes and Shapes of Sands This section applies to all 4 (four) sand types listed in Mod#1 (Silica. permeability and binder strength. . but good flow characteristics... Sub-Angular and Rounded. but not as much as Angular. and a similar mid-point of flowability. Chromite. It is common practice for foundries to use a mixture of sand shapes to achieve a balance of the above properties for their specific molding.. and presumably was classed as such. but not as good as Angular. Olivine. better interlocking strength than Rounded. and are prone to produce significat sand fines due to sharp corners breaking from mechanical handling.. Prior to the 1950's all foundry sand usage was clay bonded sand. but compound sands are not adequate for Metal Casting due to their fragile nature (typically 2 grains of lightly fused sand. but more than Rounded. Unbonded sand usage within the commercial foundry sector is relatively new (since the 1950's) as a result of the development of various casting processes and new synthetic binding agents. Angular Sands Angular Sands exhibit lower permeability though with superior interlocking strength when unbonded. in an unbonded state..This refers to loose sand that has been screened. and Zircon) The 3 (three) general shape descriptions of Mold Quality sands are Angular. with less fines generated than angular. handling and casting needs. Sub-Angular Sands Predictably Sub-Angular sands are a median between Rounded and Sub-Angular. In a bonded state require more binder to cover the higher surface area. but not as good as Rounded when unbonded.. The 3 (three) Sand shapes impart various properties such as flowability (for mechanized handling and molding). A fourth classification exists "Compound". the chart to the right is as good a gauge of the various classifications and shapes of sand as you'll find. More binder is required than Rounded. creating a compound grain) and the mechanical and thermal stresses of casting. Naturally occurring bonded sand is mined from river banks and similar deposits (vague. Rounded Sands Rounded Sands offer excellent permeability but lack any interlocking strength.

if separated into individual platelets would cover an area of approx 800 sq meters. the Hydrous component is what gives clay it's adhesive and slippery properties.. A typical individual Alumina Silicate platelet or flake ranges between 1/5000 to 1/50.000" in diameter. The elemental definition of water H2O bonds to the Alumina Silicate through 3 (three) methods. but wants to retain a certain amount of water. 1 gram of Bentonite. The text definition goes on for a full page on micellular di-pole structures. due to the variance in grain surface area. The electrostatic bonding mechanism can be defined as dipolar forces initiated by the preferential absorption of Positive and Negative Ions within the Hydrous solution. Grain shape also influences mold strength and permeability. in english Clay will dry-out. Surface tension and inter particle Friction..The 2 (two) extremes of sand shape would be Lo-Spherical/Very Angular grain compared to a HiSpherical/Well Rounded Grain. Also the elemental chemistry of various clay types have varying degrees of pH in part due to the ionic retention of the hydrous component (This may be grossly inaccurate as I've tried to reduce a tremendous amount of detail into as short a definition as possible) Clay particles are rather flat in shape and typically can be imagined to stack like a deck of cards. Green Sand & Clay(s) . The key component is that this solution has an ionic component that has enough strength to retain the hydrous element.. due to handling and usage over time. The points or material that is broken off an angular grain remains in the sand and is termed "Fines".An aluminum oxide compound Al2O3 is a family of compounds found naturally in clays such as bauxite or kaolin Silicate .A rock or mineral whose structure is dominated by bonds of silicon and oxygen atoms The Alumina & Silicate components are physical and can be defined on an elemental level. Clay and Clay Minerals All clays essentially can be considered Hydrous Alumina Silicates . typically chemically bound water or water of hydration. this near 2 dimensionality of alumina silicate when hydrated imparts the characteristic slippery plasticity of clay. Grain shape has a considerable influence on binder adhesion and qty. Electrostatic Bonding. The last point is that Grain shape has a natural tendency to change from Angular to Rounded. the qty of fines also impacts mold permeability. Alumina .Containing water..I was unsure what that meant so with Google "Define: xxxxx" Hydrous .

etc. 30% illinite. Na Western (OH)4Al4Si8O202100-2450F Very High. Western Bentonite & Kaolinite Bentonite is mined and consumed in the North American market 8 to 1 vs Kaolinite.. 10% quartz.Schleg Particle Size <0. etc.000 tons vs 90. High..Southern Bentonite.00001" <0. Dak. issues can arise with molds that hinder the collapsability of the mold as the casting contracts during solidification such as "Hot Tears" Clay Bonded sand is rated on it's "Green Strength" or ability to hold it's shape until the metal has been poured. The "Big-3 of Clay's" .. The key compositions of the Big-3 are summarized below Base Hydrous Shrinkage Refractoriness Exchange Quality (on drying) High.. Southern (OH)4Al4Si8O201800F + Ion pH=4modest Very High Bentonite nH2O 982C + 6. Ion pH=8Very High Bentonite nH2O 1148-1342C Gel Forming 10 90% Class 1A montmorillonite (Wyo. etc.000 tons. S. grain size. clay can be added in proportions ranging from 5% thru to 12%. Composition Chart abbreviated from AFS . .00001" typically coarse ground to flour Of note above is the Alkalinity of the clays based on their ionic bonding atom (Na or Ca for the Bentonites). 3000-3100F Kaolinite (OH)8Al4Si8O10 Very low Non gel Low 1647-1703C forming 60% Kaolinite. Ohio) 10% quartz.. Ca Slight..As a binder for sand.Technology of Metalcasting . limonite. The qty of clay used is influnced by numerous factors such as sand shape. alloy being poured. Utah) feldspar mica. with annual gross weights of 700. Class IV (Ill. size and thickness section of castings being poured and the desired shake-out characteristics. Although it would appear that the stronger the mold the better.5 Gelling 85% Class 1B montmorillonite (Mississippi) 15% quartz. Very Low. and it's "Hot Strength" it's ability to hold it's shape until the metal has solidified.. The elemental formulas listed don't accurately reflect the percentile mineral composition of the clays.

Typically moisture content should be kept between 38 and 42% of Active Clay (as opposed to burnt or spent clay due to firing from previous pours). With careful control of moisture content most foundries can use 100% Western Bentonite and avoid blending clays. Property Sodium Bentinite % Clay to Sand 5 % moisture 2. Ben. Sou.Western Bentonite . hot & dry strength.2 71.5 55 103 150 72 4 75 145 170 510 27 . while too little moisture effects mold surface stability. and contributes to erosion defects and mold cracks. as the clay is destroyed above 700C. The hydration of Southern Ben.0 10. and 2 to 3 times as much clay is needed to achieve similar coverage. lends itself well to high production foundries that employ mechanized molding due to it's High Green strength. Although it has 90% of the Green Strength of Southern Bentonite it has significantly more Green Strength than the Fire-Clays. requires less mulling to completely coat sand grains.Although Kaolinite clay has the highest refractoriness of the clay families it has substantially lower green.5 12.Has poor Hot & Dry strength properties that exclude it from use in steel or Cast Iron Casting. offering greater Green Strength. and superior Hot Strength characteristics than Southern Bentonite. Foundries and Foundry supply houses commonly blend the Bentonite clays to achieve an averaging of their beneficial properties. Fireclay (Kaolinite) .is the most popular clay for green sand molding due to it's compatibility with a broad range of alloys. Too much moisture impacts the moldability of the sand and shake-out characteristics. but exhibits more brittleness that impacts the ability to extract patterns that require deep pockets in the mold. Western Bentonite requires additional Mulling (over S-Ben) due to it's expansion properties when hydrated. Similarly Kaolinite requires 1/3 more water to be hydrated as the Bentinites.5 Green Compression 11.2 (PSI) Dry Compression (PSI) 101 Hot Compression @ (PSI) 1000F 110 1500F 210 1850F 520 2000F 345 2500F 8 Calcium Bentonite 5 2.4 69 Kaolinite 12 3. and Kaolinite is also blended with either or both clays to improve the refractoriness of the binder. Southern Bentonite .

Temperature .This is the most common test. higher moisture requirements or brittle molds affecting green strength. sand fractures... as the clay is activated with water and it's plasticity is a function of it's level of hydration. Moisture . Hot Strength. Since the total clay blend is determined by the alloy being cast. and too low results in gas related defects. this test becomes a good indicator of sand consistency. this relates to high production environments. Permeability is used to aid in determining proper AFS -Grain distribution. Green Strength. clay selection. This modules has 4 (four) Lab Assignments that relate to these tests.the fines or sub-granular content must be maintained below 2.Offers an excellent indicator of either Over or Under Tempering of Green Sand. the percentage of "Dead" or clay that can no longer be re-activated must be determined to ensure consistency of castings.AKA Methelyne Blue Test is used to determine the percentage of active clay remaining in the green sand mix. and mulling must also occur below that threshold point. where green sand is cycled from mold thru shake out. and establishes a benchmark that allows foundries to compare a standard. Secondary Tests This series of tests are performed less frequently (daily or weekly depending on volume and test) Active Clay Content . The accumulation of fines from dead clay. quantity of Clay and moisture. Total Fines . Compactability . or other green sand additives can adversely effect casting quality by reduction of permeability. AFS -gfn . This measure can be affected by Mulling.Primary Tests The following are a series of what are considered Primary Tests that are run on a continual basis (hourly) within a commercial foundry operation to ensure Green Sand performance is maintained at a consistent level. The accepted rule is that sand must be under 120F to re-activate clay binders.Testing is also classed as a Primary test . mulled and into mold again at a high rate. Permeability . .. Too high a permeability results in surface finish defects. Flowability and Permeability. and the sand grains are not being coated.Grain size distribution was beaten-up and left for dead in the previous module. size and weight to sand ratio.. and is a determinant in the sand's ability to vent gases. when combined with Moisture testing.5 and 4% depending on the castings being produced.The last of the Primary tests is a measure of the "Openness" of a green sand mixture. Green Compression Strength . Many of the other properties of green sand are dependant on accurate maintenance of proper moisture levels. Green sand mulled above 120F is simply mixed together.

there is a reduced moisture content required. it is the influence that moisture has on the molding sand that should be aimed at. Water. LOI (Loss on Ignition) ... Supplementary additives (Organics . The ideal hydration of the clay and sand mixture is the "Temper" of the sand.Wet Tensile Strength .flour etc) Sand Type. WTS can be adversely impacted by shifts in the AFS-gfn. Ideal hydration is the point that all water is engaged within the clay structure and it can absorb no more.It should be noted that when the molding process is mechanized as in HDM practice. Water This module is relatively brief. or accumulation of contaminants in the sand. High Density Molding (HDM) . As stated in the previous module notes. these are the various green and hot strength values that are required to create quality castings. . There is an ionic bonding mechanism at work that has water penetration that ranges from 3 to 10 molecules into the platelet structure. The terms discussed are "Adsorbed (nor absorbed) & Free Water. .. TWS is a good indicator of the quality of the Bentonite in use. the method of mulling. Rather. Moisture Content This is a variable due to many factors that influence the requirement of water. while Free Water is any excess. And remember each clay type has unique points of hydration. It is the water clay-bond that gives molding sand it's plasticity. Adsorbed is the point of ideal hydration. percentage of live to dead clay.this is the end of Course notes for Module 3 MATL MTB72.. LOI is used to determine the amount of combustible material in the green sand. but is dedicated to the most essential and most abused material within the green sand molding an integral function of the green sand process. • • • • • clay type.. This implies that to aim for a static numerical value for moisture content is impossible.. the moisture requirements of the sand are similarly dynamic. But there is no excess water that is free within the sand Clay mixture. please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 3.For some alloys it is necessary to add carbonaceous material such as "Seacoal". shape and grain distribution and fines Molding Sand Properties Vs Moisture Content Given that some of the above factors are variable over the life of the sand. the water or aqueous component of clay goes beyond simply wetting the other minerals.

which brings to light the influence of the alloy type. toughness and permeability. gas pick-up resulting in porosity defects. peak Green strength as well as ideal. Water can actually be decomposed at excessive heat when in contact with certain alloys. Water like most materials. in the case of Cast Iron the thermo-chemical interaction is illustrated as 3Fe + 4H2O – Fe3O4 + 4 H2. Other considerations such as . To be clear. I said it was a nightmare) as well as our house (similarly located a distance from the foundry). on a volumetric scale as well in consideration of mass.An important factor in the water clay relationship is "Compactability". The expansive property of excess or free water within a mold is further exasperated by the resultant decrease of the mold's permeability.. though it should be noted that the ionic bonds that hold the water and clay in solution are rather weak and even temperatures as low as 120f to 160F (well below boiling) still influence the liberation of water. I picture a shower of liquid metal droplets emanating outward like bullets onto workers. This can be in the form of superior surface finishes. The heat of the casting process obviously liberates a qty of water from the mold.are found within the following list.3% above it's original volume between 5C and 100C. Such a rapid expansion of a significant qty of free water within a mold can result in an explosion. Hot Sand Considerations.. this characteristic influences the strength of the molding sand. as well as hot tears due to too high a hot strength that does not allow the casting to shrink uniformly. reducing or removing persistent defects and the scrap rate associated with such defects. Sand molding and testing should be restricted to temperatures below 100F. For example a 50lb mold that receives 1 lb of molten metal dissipates less heat than a similar qty of sand that receives 5 lbs of the same Alloy. resistance to deformation. It stands to reason that the sand to metal ratio has a significant influence on the moisture losses associated with the casting process. Green Sand Additives As the previous module dealt with the issues associated with moisture (water) as the most important consideration in the maintenance of green sand. Excess Moisture Defects . Aluminum as a significantly lower thermal transfer requirement than a ferrous alloy such as Cast Iron. deformation (oversized) castings. this module will address the numerous other materials that can be added and their effect & purpose. and building walls and work benches. The impact of each droplet in my nightmare scenario has all of my buildings engulfed in flames (even the hunt camp located a Km away. tools. expands as it rises in temperature Water can expand up to 4. Surely some clever engineer can use this to create a new energy economy. essentially forming iron oxide (rust) and hydrogen on contact. above 100C (the point of vaporization) water expands rapidly to 1600 times it's liquid volume. the only reason to modify or change the properties of the foundry sand is to improve the quality of the castings. fine cracks. in an HDM application the sand has a compactability between 30 to 40%. The Temper point of the sand is the point of ideal hydration.

this definitely won't be on the exam. Through all of the above the primary objective is to establish consistency in the Green Sand %20Practices/content/resource/gloss.flowability or handling of the sand are included. shakeout.bridgefieldgroup. due to their typically subjective nature (Note . and quick reusability for high production foundries. but are critical only in relation to the value placed on them by the user or customer. this area would cover the molding process. and the end product will be an assortment of benefits and compromises. Define: variabilityThe characteristic of a product or process in which parameters fluctuate to a significant degree but do not typically trend in a specific direction.bridgefieldgroup.htm . consistency and the ability to continue performance in stress or volume situations.bridgefieldgroup.html Define: Quality The characteristics of an item or process that indicate its conformance to designated parameters. I personally feel that there is no optimal or super sand system. the molds properties in terms of www.princeton. and deviation characteristics of a set of observations.html variable control chart. but is an exercise that frames a deeper understanding of the overall objective. Variability Theory .Define: Variability.2asc.A chart presenting actual data from quality tests that shows the range.htm Define: Consistency (logic) an attribute of a logical system that is so constituted that none of the propositions deducible from the axioms contradict one another A measure of the ability of a particular method to converge on the correct answer as the sample size becomes infinite. Consistency and Quality to get a better sense of their meaning. and its degree of perceived customer acceptance or satisfaction.cogsci. Quality characteristics often include reliability. www. reclamation.ubc. Reduction of variability is a priority in systems that attempt to ensure consistent quality and reduce lead times.htm The totality of features and characteristics of a product that bear on its ability to satisfy given needs.htm A spread of possible outcomes around an expected outcome www. upper and lower limits.zoology.I found that it was worth my while to "google .

In summary. rat-tails." Additives . the appropriate addition of cereal material. wheat.So as a Green Sand . dimensional stability and shake-out properties while contributing to the quality of the casting. . improves plasticity.Many of the additives are naturally occurring minerals. Again. and rye. The green and hot strength properties of the mold can be improved with cereal additions between 0. Points of consideration are . Cereals typically are destroyed at temperatures between 500F and 700F.25% and 2% by weight. cracks. veining. rice husk/hull and nut shells. Cereals .The contact of molten metal creates dead material that will be accumulating in the molding sand over successive castings. Cellulose . milo. The term flour implies a very fine particle size.This additive covers the variety of "Flours" including wood. The destruction of the cellulose material at the mold metal interface creates a cushioning effect. while contributing to the quality of the casting. bearing in mind the variability of additives the initial introduction of cereals should be between 1% and 2% of the total weight of the batch. Organic Additives . we could say that "Our goal is to reduce the Variability of the mixture such that we can achieve and maintain Consistency in an effort to provide Quality castings. The improved green strength and deformation properties reduce sand inclusions. and dry strength. In summary. This cushioning effect can aid in reducing scabs. ultimately contributing to excessive fines. improves flowability. The purpose of introducing a cereal structure into the molding sand is to increase plasticity. hot tears and buckle type defects. Similarly excessive water/cereal combinations typically exhibit gassing defects ranging from hydrogen formation to carbon monoxide and Carbon Dioxide formations. resins. Excessive cereal may rob water from the temper point of the clay and actually reduce green and hot strength of molding material. green & hot Strength.This additive covers the variety of "Flours" including corn. This property of variability contributes in a cumulative fashion as additives are introduced.Mission Statement. the appropriate addition of cellulose material. Excessive water and cereal may create such a high hot strength that the mold can not shrink or collapse as the metal solidifies and create hot tears. proteins. The term flour implies a very fine particle size. as such there is a degree of variability in the composition of the additives. as well as aid in retaining moisture. and oils.include but are not limited to Cereals. This is the rational to minimizing the use of additives. The purpose of introducing Cellulose material is to absorb excess water and improve the flowability of the sand during the molding process. where the burnt cellulose matter leaves voids that allow the sand grains to expand while retaining better mold dimensional accuracy.

lignite and petroleum distillates. and provide some stabilization of the mold's dimensional properties. resulting in poor Green & Hot Strength properties. Seacoal is typically added at 2% to 8% by weight relative to the batch of molding sand. The list of Carbonaceous materials includes (but is not limited to) seacoal. gilsonite.The contact of molten metal creates dead material that will be accumulating in the molding sand over successive castings. and the pronounced brittleness (or reduced plasticity) of the mold. though the gases aid in producing a non-oxidizing atmosphere for the metal surface with the addition of "Lustrous Carbon" This production of gases necessitates the addition of vents to aid in the dispersion of the gas.. This thermal property is most effective with alloys that promote the liquefaction of Iron Oxide creating the best thermal transfer properties. Inorganic Additives . The purpose of adding Iron Oxide is to aid in the thermal transfer of heat from the mold metal interface. Of these the most common is Seacoal. Note that carbonaceous materials are NOT used in the casting of steel. lignite and petroleum distillates. silicates and some esters. that essentially water-proofing the sand and clay.. a finely crushed bituminous coal. ultimately contributing to excessive fines. inhibiting the hydration of the clay and bonding action. Carbonaceous Materials . Carbonaceous material is used to improve the surface quality of the casting. Also like cereal material. The examples given for Cast Iron green sands are all listed in the . The materials listed above have significantly higher volumes of "Volatile Carbons" and as such can replace seacoal in a 1 to 2 ratio (half as much as was used of the seacoal). resulting in associate defects such as wash-out.The introduction of fines and the effect on permeability. This property is enhanced by the addition of carbonaceous material. which may impact the ability to draw patterns that have deep pockets. etc. asphalt. gassing. wall movement. The Volatile nature of the powered coal produces a significant volume of smoke and gas. Points of consideration are .The effect of fines from the seacoal and the requirement of heavy venting due to reduced permeability. Similarly the addition of Iron Oxide has an effect on the refractoriness of the molding sand and may contribute to "Burn-On" type defects. Also the introduction of excessive asphalt. Points of consideration are . Cellulose material if used excessively can undermine the ideal temper of the water/clay ratio and reduce green & hot strength properties. potentially reducing Green & Hot Strength. the scavenging effect the Iron Oxide has on the moisture content. A general note that applies to all modifications to the green sand a fine inorganic additive that has it's place primarily with Silica based sands. The term that describes how a casting separates at the mold metal interface is called "Peel".These materials are applicable to Cast Iron alloys and some of the larger.Points of consideration are . thick walled copper alloy molding sands. while leaving room for the sand grains to expand. Iron Oxide . as it would introduce carbon and alter the alloy in undesirable ways.include but are not limited to cement. regardless of additive is the volumes or masses of material. Gilsonite.

only employ additives to impart a characteristic improvement in the sand for the casting at hand... An example of a chemical additive would be Soda Ash for the purpose of reducing the acidic pH that results from cereal usage or the contamination of molding sand by the introduction of spent core material that was catalyzed by an acidic process. as well as any supplementary additives that may unduly complicate the maintenance process in the course of counter-acting the effects of initial additives..per-ton ranges.I think the name is too generic as everything can be reduced to a chemical composition? no matter.. the larger medium can be somewhat more forgiving. If this occurs. Polymer Additives . offering better clay hydration and superior coating properties to the sand. All clay-based Green Sand mixture inevitably require some maintenance to ensure that Compactability. Essentially dilution sand can be added to counter act a variety of additive related issues. Refractoriness and Permeability via grain distribution remains within acceptable ranges. . ad nauseum. In closing.9 range.These materials are relatively new additions to the foundry and serve the purpose of lowering the surface tension of the water. and if MINOR errors are made. Dilution Sand This is the addition of sand of an appropriate grain size or distribution to buffer or counter act the accumulation of fines and restore permeability. The larger the scale of production typically the easier the additives are to control (assuming adequate mechanization is employed to handle such volumes).. select the additive(s) carefully with the implications on the entire system as materials decompose due to exposure at the mold metal interface. The illustration that comes to mind is the maintenance of an aquarium for fish. it's generally much easier to maintain the properties of a larger (100g) tank than it is for a small (5g) tank. This counter action of a lowered or acidic pH is employed to stabilize the properties of the Bentonite clays that are effected by acid pH resulting in a weaker bond strength. though be aware that this will activate clay that has been dormant and result in variations in mulling and significant modifications to Green compression strength. In summary. I hope you get the picture that as soon as we start to modify one parameter we effect other parameters and soon. This modified water of sorts can make minor allowances for hot sand molding environments by the reduced moisture loss relative to the less hydrated clay.. we're making additions that are counter acting previous additions. as the name implies it dilutes the general composition based on the volumes of the composition and the volume of dilution required to achieve a specific purpose.. The soda ash is added in proportions that restore the pH to the 8 .. avoid the "Knee-Jerk" response of reducing the clay content. Similarly the use of polymers to enhance hydration can translate into reduced mulling requirements Chemical Additives . Be aware that the addition of dilution sand may require the proportionate addition of other constituents to ensure that the mixture retains it's desired properties. dilution sand is typically added at the rate of 20% to 30% to maintain the sand mix over time.

Below is a link that has several Video clips on GMBond Upon careful reading and research into the chemical binder systems. and heated to create a Biopolar crystalline structure from the polymerization of the binder. This product is licensed through Hormel Foods. Although I enjoy the exposure to the spectrum of industrial processes. The shakeout characteristics are also excellent. The addition of water acts as a catalyst that forms polymer bonding of the mixture. Cores are parts of the mold that typically are placed after the pattern is removed and form internal passage ways within the casting. The R&D effort brought GMbond to market in the late 1990's. mixed dry to a rounded grain sand. these amino acids are found in the base material "Collagen Compounds" & an additive that promotes thermal breakdown is also included . The materials are derived from renewable naturally occurring sources and refined into a non-toxic compound. CI binder would have an additional component (Ferrous Oxide) that improves surface finish added.BINDERS Modules 6 & 7 could be under one heading of binders.Protein based Binders This family of binders is a recent innovation developed by General Motors Corp. The result was a Polymer-Peptide based binder that is formed through the use of "Long-Chain Amino Acids". I agree with the Colleges choice in omitting significant detail on these systems. Phenolic Urethane. regardless of their applicability to my foundry. The sand flowability is optimal at a lower temperature. Cores are blown or formed. these are of greater interest for the purpose of creating Cores.html Essentially the process requires 1% protein based binder by weight. Initially I thought that Mohawk had glossed over the topic of core-binders. These cores exhibit excellent tensile strength on the order of 200psi with less than 2% binder. As an aside the licensing to a food industry manufacturer is an indication of the low impact the compound has on the environment. I started to see the typically high environmental impact these systems impose. as the core is reduced to free sand due to thermal breakdown of the polymerized biopolar crystal structure. . Any retained core material is completely water soluble and is easily washed form the casting. Protein based core binders work well in Aluminum and Magnesium foundries as well as Cast Iron production. and Urea Formaldehyde. impose significant capital and operating overheads to be handled in an effective and safe manner.gmbond. either a true testament or just clever marketing on the part of GM. GM began with an R&D effort in 1990 to replace their current binder systems with a more environmentally friendly system that could compete with regard to Cost & Performance properties. The families of Furan. with a gross lack of detail on the chemical binder systems found in the foundry industry. though must not be present for either Al or Mg castings. Module # 6 .

The general rule of thumb is that for every 10 Degrees C the mixture is above the optimally recommended temperature. All aspects from initial mixing through post-casting reclamation share in the benefits of an environmentally benign process.. The trend in the 1980's was toward developing "No-Bake" or room temperature curing compounds. and then activated with a second compound known as a catalyst.. The primary constituent is the sand itself. ideally a sand that has a rounded shape requires less binder and can provide improved mold/core densities and strengths. Sand handling has a significant impact on mold/core quality. . and the formation of synthetic binding polymers vs the amino acid based polymers that are water soluble. typically long sand transports through steel piping should be avoided as it can degrade the sand. a mixture at 33C will set in 20 mins. The basic idea of establishing consistency in casting production is also important when considering chemically bonded molds & cores. Initially the sand is coated with a resin. also any process that might lead to segregation of the grain distribution is to be avoided. This is related to findings that indicate carcinogenic properties and environmental concerns associated with the reclamation and disposal of spent sands. Temperature The effects of temperature are important in both "Heat Pattern" process and the "No-Bake" process. Chemical Binders This module will focus on the "No-Bake" process and resin bonded sands. The property of activation or "Set-Time" is also influenced by the temperature of the resin coated sand. The activation of the resin with a catalyst forms synthetic polymers that create the high strength properties required in the mold or core application. leaving a gummy residue with poor activation characteristics when the catalyst is introduced. while the resins will begin to partially evaporate at temperatures above 100F. 10 minutes can be removed from the "Set-Time" ie. while a mixture at 43C would set in 10 mins. Note that a mixture at 43C (well above 100F) would have very poor core/mold strength properties due to decomposed resin prior to activation by the catalyst.The problems of Core Gases is also eliminated as well as the toxicity of traditional core processes by as much as 99% in Al & Mg production. Ideally Heat Pattern molding requires that temperatures are held within 50F of the target temperature (based on the application datasheet for the binder system being employed). The resin based binders are typically a 2 (two) part process. The key distinction between the Protein based binders and chemical is the chemical catalyst vs a heat catalyst. Note: There are significant risks and high capital & operating costs associated with certain families of chemically bonded sands. The mixing of sands an resins is inhibited by excessive viscosity at temperature below 50F. If a resin coated mixture is rated to set within 30min if the mixture is at 23C when activated. The No-Bake process requires that all processes be within the range of 70F to 100F.

33% due to it's negative effects. The Hot-Box. Acid Catalyst No-Bakes systems require an acidic ADV. the slower the polymerization of the resin. Up to a limit. Typically moisture content is kept below 0. the stronger the bond. while sands below 50F are too viscous to be moved effectively and would result in poor activation if at all.. this is illustrated in the lecture notes as.. This is the same scale that is used to maintain drinking water.. This condition is counteracted by the use of in-line resin or sand heaters to aid to maintaining an adequate temperature. ..Acid Demand Value Defined as the property of a sand or additive to affect the cure process as a function of the materials acidity or basicity on the pH scale. (if you understood that on the first reading you can take my spot in line for the gold star.) Density The core density also holds a relationship to the cured strength properties of core/molds.. and aquariums for fish keepers etc. Warm-Box. and creating a condition where condensation potentially could occur. ADV . Conversely sand that is below 70F can take significantly longer to set or cure when activated. Moisture The effects of excessive moisture can have tremendous impact on the properties of the cured core/molds if outside the specified norms for the process being used. The pH scale is defined as the logarithm of the reciprocal of the hydrogen ion concentration within an aqueous solution.. "The effect of a hot summer day with 100% humidity will cause the tensile strength to drop by 4 times" The effect of moisture condensing on cool sand on a hot day is a significant factor. This ADV requirement now demands that the sand be tested to ensure that it is consistent with the process being employed. while Cold-Box and Phenolic Urethane processes require a more basic ADV. The paradox exists in the molds ability to resist absorption of moisture when cured but having to use comparably cooler sand to achieve the slower catalyst activation. This creates a paradox of sorts as there is also a relationship between the speed of activation or the formation of the polymerized bonds and the strength of the core/mold.I doubt that it requires mentioning that sand/resin mixtures at 53C will not reverse time. as the ADV of sands can drift over use... by setting 5 minutes prior to the addition of the catalyst...

especially when a binder is used that has poor collapsibility or too high a Hot Strength.. Cold-Box & No-Bake. or based on Carbon compound(s). Expansion Characteristics The final consideration in all binder systems. compactability increases between 8 to 10% over an angular grain shape. about the lack of coverage of the "Binder Systems". ... The In-Organic binders require more attention when molding. Silica Sand has the worst characteristics at almost 4 times the rate of expansion than. Olivine.. or Non-Carbon binders are based on Silicate compound(s) or Phosphate/Metal Oxide compound(s). my statement in the previous section (6 & 7). and especially for cores is the thermal expansion characteristics of the sand being used. Cold-Box Phenolic/Urethane/Amine Silicate/CO2 Furan/SO2 Acrylic/Epoxy/SO2 (Acrylic) FRC /SO2 Phenolic/Ester (Methyl Formate) Phenolic/CO2 No-Bake Furan/Acid Phenolic/Acid Phenolic/Ester Oil/Urethane Silicate/Ester Phenolic Urethane Phosphate/Metal Oxide Polyol Urethane Heat-Activated Shell Core Oil Phenolic Hot-Box Furan Hot-Box Urea Formaldehyde Hot-Box Warm-Box The table above is the AFS grouping re-typed for quick reference.The most common way to influence density is through grain shape of the sand. Heat Activated Chemical Binder Systems Let me retract. Chromite and Zircon Sands. The dimensional integrity of the core within a closed area of the casting potentially could create stress or hot tears. The chemical binders are grouped by activation. the main groupings are Heat Activate.. The In-Organic. Of note within the "Chemical Binders" is that the majority are classed as Organic. though do have a place in specific foundry operations that require other properties that are beneficial. provide lower strength levels and are the least reactive when catalyzed. This section and the next 2 sections are more info on binders. This section will deal with the Heat Activated class.. Again a balance has to be established as too high a density will adversely effect the permeability of the core/mold and create issues associated with gas related defects such as porosity. This section will not cover every "Heat-Activated" binder type listed but will discuss the more common applications and provide an overview of the group. where a rounded shape will require the least binder for effective coverage...

both require precision temp control of sand. In hollow cores the box is tilted to allow un-catalyzed sand to pour out for the next core.. These binder systems made the production of thin-walled castings in the production of engine-blocks possible due to their superior strength and shake-out characteristics. The core mold is a heated box (typically 500F . also known as the Croning process (named for it's developer Johannes Croning) is comparatively more current than the Core Oil process. Hot Box Core Process The dominant process are Furan. The sand is held at temperature for a period of time that allows the resins to melt and form either a solid or hollow shell core.. Phenolic & Urea Formaldehyde. Shell sand has an indefinite shelf life prior to molding and the mold/cores similarly have an indefinite shelf-life prior to use. The hybrid resins are formulated with . Water is added to activate the cereal material and achieve a measure of green strength. Once the Sand/Cereal/water is well mixed a quantity of kerosene oil is added that improves the flowability of the sand and acts as a releasing agent for the formed core. and it's adaptability to mold production as well as Core production. and hollow cores aid in the "Shake-Out" properties of the casting.Core Oil Binder Molding This method has been replaced by other systems but was once a dominant core bonding system and is one of the oldest. having been developed in the early 1960's (much like myself. The Core sand is dry mixed with cereal additives. The coating methods described in the text are termed "Hot-Coating" and "Warm-Coating". These process are even more current than the Shell process.). The mixture is blown or rammed into a core mold. Though their application is somewhat restricted due to the environmental issues that surround the emissions of Formaldehyde in production. as it was developed during the second World War. Although it is possible to resin coat the sand in-house. The shell process is still in use today. Typically most foundries purchase core sand that is pre-coated with resin. Part of the Shell Processes longevity is it's relative ease of use. Shell Cores provide good surface finish properties due to their flow and density characteristics. The 3 resin types can be used individually or in combination to create specific core types with properties that are tailored to the casting in question. resin and typically a chemical wash and mechanical treatment to particulate the sand for usage. Beyond the advantages of long storage periods. removed and baked at between 350F & 500F in an oven with adequate air flow to evacuate any moisture release from the core.550F) that the sand is blown or rammed into. Shell or Croning Process The Shell process. the technical nature of the process generally precludes doing so.

Lastly Sodium Silicate/Carbon Dioxide will be discussed.. Phenolic Urethane/Amine (PUA) This system uses a 2 part resin coating made up of a Phenolic based resin that is dissolved by an organic solvent. The Core molds that are used in "Cold-Box" applications have special considerations for passing gases or vapours through the pattern. though the heat activation occurs approx 100F lower than the traditional "Hot-Box" temperature. and isocyanate material that is dissolved by a similar solvent.consideration to the ADV (Acid Demand Value) of the sand and the pH nature of the resin's themselves to ensure proper polymerization into a stable thermoset. reduced energy consumption required in core activation make this a more viable and economically attractive Core Production method. For a PUA mold the venting ensures that 80% of the crosssectional area of the core is exposed to the catalyzing gas.Cold Box Technology The "Cold-Box" technologies are currently being used in high-end core production and high volume core production shops. More Chemical Binder Systems . while offering the flexibility of using plastic core molds at the lower activation heats. The reduction of environmental pollutants. Phenolic Urethane/Amine (or PUA for short) is ranked as the #1 process in use. The common theme appears that this is an Ammonia based molecule that has been modified to fall into an "Organic" classification. with Epoxy Acrylic/Sulphur Dioxide as an alternative method to the PUA system. Once properly coated the sand is blown into the Core molds. These compounds are blended with clean sand to form the resin coating. though the catalyst is a mild acid. Of the most popular in use today (2005) are. The gas/vapour that is used is from the Amine family. Warm-Box Core Process This method is similar to the Hot-Box listed above. What distinguishes this system from the Hot & Warm-Box techniques beyond the use of heat as a catalyst is the use of a vapour or gas as a catalyzing agent. . resulting in substantially reduced Formaldehyde and Phenol emissions. The sand that is used is still a resin coated sand though. below are the results of a quick "GoogleDefine" .. • • • sodium silicate/carbon dioxide (gas) phenolic urethane/amine (vapor) epoxy acrylic/sulphur dioxide (gas) Although other processes are also in use these three form the majority of the market in use. The Process also is similar to Hot-Box Core production in that it uses a Furan based resin.

the core/mold will shrink in the coarse of the curing process. the type of aggregate and/or sand as well the age of the core/mold. The adherence to local regulations in the use of such a system is essential to being a safe employer and corporate will stick to such benign process as wheat flour binders baked with molasses.brinkster. www. Also proper design of core venting and aspiration of the Core/Mold box is a prerequisite to consistently stable core/mold production.html A curing agent used with epoxy resins that is any of a class of ammonia derivatives..asp An organic molecule which consists of an ammonia molecule where one or more of the hydrogen atoms has been replaced by organic groups. The amount of shrinkage is a function of the density of the core/mold. www. It is advised that the sand be catalyzed as soon as possible after coating.• • • One of a class of organic compounds which can be considered to be derived from ammonia by replacement of one or more hydrogen by organic radicals. DMEA is the more effective catalyzing agent but has a higher cost and also has a much stronger odour.. the addition of heat to the clean air will accelerate the catalyst action of the Amine gas with the Phenolic Urethane resin mixture. the remainder of the curing process occurs as the catalyst gases evaporate once the core/mold is removed from the core box.pqcorp. In closing this section any chemical system that has an acronym like PUA likely has a poor environmental impact and this is true in this case.. misterguch. For my part theworkshop. Sodium Silicate/Carbon Dioxide The Sodium Silicate/Carbon Dioxide system is a popular alternative to the PUA system just discussed. a flush of clean air is introduced to the mold also under This type of chemical composition has some properties that have to be accounted for. as a result TEA is found more commonly in Core/Mold production usage. The Amine gases are carefully collected and vented off to a scrubber that neutralizes the Amine and recovers the vapour in the form of Acidic Salts. Unlike some core/molding systems PUA has a very short shelf life for the resin coated sand.. Also of note is that even with a clean-air flush the core/mold is still only 70 to 80% cured. once the Amine is introduced. A general rule of thumb would be that industrial organic compounds can be potentially harmful to staff and the environment. The 2 (two) most common Amine based catalysts are triethylamine (TEA) and dimetylethylamine (DMEA).airproducts. as the gas catalyst interaction with the resin coated sand is crucial. The primary concern is dimensional accuracy. the proportions of resin. As with many chemical processes. Considerations The PUA binder class falls under the definition of a Polymeric resin system. .htm The Amine based vapour/gas is introduced under as well as remove any pronounced odor or health hazard. The purpose of the air is to ensure that the Amine is completely passed through the mold/core. This system is classed as an "In-Organic" binder system and as such has fewer health and environmental concerns associated with it's use.

The Sodium Silicate/Carbon Dioxide system was introduced in the 1950's and pre-dates Phenolic Urethane/Amine. better flow properties from the mixer through the hopper and into the core blowing machinery. The Shake-Out characteristics for a Sodium Silicate/CO2 core/mold are unfortunately. Optimal performance has been established with 1 part Silicate to 2. The reclamation system most commonly used is a "Packed Tower Scrubber" this system uses a water and 5% Sodium Hydroxide . Also this property implies a relatively short shelf-life of core/molds. The strength properties of the Core/Mold are closely related to the Sodium Silicate ratio. with poor hot strength characteristics. Acrylic based resins have excellent green strength and moldability. Of concern with this process is the core/mold tendency to absorb moisture in humid environments. these additives can't be used in non-ferrous applications.5% to 2. and isocyanate from an environmental view. This system is free of Water and Nitrogen from a gas generation perspective and also Phenol. or alternatively a 50/50 mix for Aluminum production is used. The benefits of this system are reduced scrap sand. Assuming a 60sec gassing time to activate or catalyze the binder. although some additives are available to improve this property for Ferrous metal castings. @ 60F it is close to 50PSI and at 100F is just under 200PSI compressive strength. Epoxy Acrylic/Sulfur Dioxide (FRC) This final "Cold-Box" system is also known as the FRC system. A blend of 35 parts Epoxy to 65 parts Acrylic (with peroxide for Ferrous applications) seems ideal. has no odour and will NOT be a respiratory irritant. The duration of gassing has an effect on Core/Mold Strengths.Primarily the use of CO2 as the catalyzing gas/vapour removes the requirement of a scrubber as the gas in inert. Similarly the Sodium Silicate binder has a lower environmental impact and can be considered comparatively inert. a fully cured mold will have a high initial strength but should be used the same day as it will have fully 1/5th the strength of an under cured core/mold 48hrs later. this adverse property should be attended to with air conditioning and humidity handling systems. @ 32F the compressive strength is approx 20PSI. One of the pluses of a Sodium Silicate/CO2 system is that it generates very little gases when compared to Organic systems. Though the catalyst gas (Sulfer Dioxide) does require additional equipment (Scrubbers) for reclamation. ureaformaldehyde. though I couldn't find the reason in either the lecture notes or text. quite poor. mechanical reclamation has poor results though some water based systems are available. Similarly the sand reclamation process can be hampered by vitrification of the core due to heat. These proportions are mixed to sand in 0.0% concentrations.. The popularity of PUA is largely due to superior strength properties over Sodium Silicate/Carbon Dioxide. so has fewer porosity defects.. This system uses a blend of both Acrylic and Epoxy resins to derive the best strength properties of both compounds.5 parts Soda compounds. The temperature of the Sodium Silicate mixture when gassed has a significant impact on compressive strength of the core/mold. while Epoxy based resins provide excellent Hot Strength properties though with longer cure-times and gassing requirements.

As discussed in a previous module. molding and compaction will occur within. The Air-Set or No-Bake systems are distinguished from the cold-Box systems just covered in that they are catalyzed by a liquid rather than a gas agent. The ideal temperature or mid-point from which to work is between 75F & 85F...5. either this effluent is benign or hazardous. how can there be such vague guide-lines for disposal of this type of material. Temperatures above 110F tend to evaporate the solvents within the resin(s). Work. with a lower limit of approx 50F and an upper limit of approx 110F. The moisture has to be evaporated from the core/mold to ensure that the binder is not under-cured and proportionally weaker as a result. Sand heaters and/or chiller may be needed to achieve consistent results. Strip & Cure times should be predictable consistent durations that are specific to the resin type being used. Local laws and environmental regulation will dictate whether this can be discharged or requires specific disposal considerations. The resultant Sodium Sulphate solution has a pH of 8. the second is the "Strip-Time" referring to the period that has to elapse before core/mold has polymerized enough to hold it's shape and be removed from the core box.. and the resin will not be able to properly coat the grains if not pre-coated. The Air-Set binder system is generally used by smaller "Jobber-Shops" or low volume foundries due to the additional time required for the binder system to cure once molded. The basic premise is that every rise in sand/resin temperature of approx 10C/18F cuts the current phase time in half. Temperature & Humidty The considerations of temperature and humidity can be even more critical with some of the binder systems that generate water as a byproduct of the polymerization process.. Similarly any surplus moisture or un-catalyzed solvents may contribute to excessive gassing and porosity defects in the casting. The sand/resin mixture may become too viscous below 50F to flow properly.. the qty & type of catalyst added.. As a last resort the core/mold may be baked in an oven to ensure all moisture and solvents have been evaporated.. No-Bake Air-Set Binder Systems This the final section for this course as well as the last of the Core/Mold Binder systems. In an effort to accommodate the temperature requirements of the binder system that a foundry is using. The first phase is "WorkTime" this is the period that all mixing transport. the ambient temperature of the sand and room as well as humidity. As an aside.solution. the 10C/18F Rule is applicable. I can't see how regional jurisdiction would matter... . resulting in gummy resin that also does not coat or flow properly. lastly the "Cure-Time" is the period of time that has to elapse once the core starts to set-up to the time that the resins are fully cured or polymerized.. again a process that I will not undertake for the sake of profit. This binder system has 3 (three) distinct phases or durations that start immediately after the catalyst is added to the coated sand mixture and occur at ambient room temperature.

. www.curiously I think that this would open the door to litigation on the basis of "False Advertising" if sold as a "No-Bake" binder system.htm Capable of being mixed together.html a colorless toxic flammable liquid used in the synthesis of nylon www. water and ethyl alcohol are miscible. to clarify this see below..havoline. en.html The capability of being mixed. Medium & High Nitrogen systems. colorless. and readily polymerizes with acidic catalysts to a solid state at room temperature The Furan family has 3 sub groupings based upon the Nitrogen & water content of the system. also known as furane and furfuran.htm The system is considered as Organic. eg. but rather is composed of either Urea Formaldehyde (UF) or Phenol Formaldehyde (PF) as well as a Furfuryl alcohol.sludgehappens. It is toxic and may be carcinogenic. Two liquids are said to be miscible if they are partially or completely soluble in each other. google define: Furan • • • Resin formed from reactions involving furfuryl alcohol alone or in combination with other constituents. www. www. The Big-3 As with the Cold-Box system there are 3 (three) main families of binders that will be discussed • • • the Furan/acid system the Silicate/ester system the Phenolic urethane system Furan/Acid System The first is the Furan/Acid system. mutually soluble. Furan is a clear.wikipedia. google define: Miscible • • • • Capable of being mixed in any concentration without separation of phases. the term miscible is understood to mean that the two liquids are completely soluble in each other. very volatile and highly flammable liquid with a boiling point close to room temperature.html Miscible means able to be mixed. Commonly. This system is categorized as the Furan Family but contains no furan.princeton.hghouston. is an aromatic heterocyclic organic compound.) These are generically identified as Low. (See also The Furfuryl alcohol is said to be miscible with water.

effectively neutralizing the catalyst before the curing process is complete. In closing. strip and cure times. I think it is self evident. Sand Resin Catalyst Typical Material proportions Mold 98. the Furan Family of binders are among the most widely used systems for the class of NoBake/Air-set. On the negative side SO2 (Sulfur Dioxide) is produced during the casting process. and is generally from either the Phosphoric or Sulfonic families. They offer flexible work. with the Sulfonic acids yielding faster cure times. although not stated. as well as the toxicity of the resin & catalyst components involved. The tensile strength of the core/mold is also negatively impacted by higher levels of moisture. The catalyst material is an acid. it's possible to theorize a relationship between the moisture content created during the polymerization phase and rate of cure. beyond which core/mold quality is effected by dried weak surfaces that are prone to being friable when cast. good Hot-Strength & Erosion Resistance and relative ease of sand reclamation. The release of residual formaldehyde during the sand reclamation process also poses health and environmental concerns.70% 1. Though the effect of nitrogen is less pronounced with Non-Ferrous castings. while Silica. Chromite and Zircon sands would be acceptable.96% 0. What is stated is that higher moisture contents do generally lead to slower cure-times. . and do not include the volume of sand/aggregate.. The third issue is the relationship between Nitrogen (N) and moisture.24% Core 98.30% Note that molds generally have less resin & catalyst than cores. The catalyst reaction is exothermic or one that generates heat.Low Medium High Furan/Acid Binder Classification Nitrogen % 0-3 2-8 5 . The sand that is used can adversely affect the curing process if it has a high ADV (Acid Demand Value). it is problematic with ferrous (especially steel) castings.00% 0.15 10 . although neither text or lecture notes explicitly say this. The Nitrogen (and by association moisture) content can be modified by the use of "Low-N" Furfuryl alcohol..11 Water % 0-5 5 . The rate of cure can be accelerated up to a point.80% 0.30 These percentages are representative of the percentile of the polymerized resin. The acidic nature of the catalyst is what activates and precipitates polymerization. Olivine sand does have a high ADV and would be considered unsuitable.

net/glossary/e. Silicate/Ester Chemical Binder Family This family is composed of a Sodium Silicate resin that is In-Organic that is catalyzed by an organic Acid Ester. The same considerations of ADV of the sand are applicable to this system as the polymerization occurs as a result of the acidic catalyst. www. In esters of carboxylic .shtml Compound formed by the elimination of water and bonding of an alcohol and an organic a carbonyl group bonded to an O that is in turn bonded to a C.4% 12.8% 56. www.htm A molecule containing an ester linkage. Low Medium High Silicate/Ester Resin Composition Na2O SiO2 H2O 15.html Above is a quick reference to better define an Ester.85 google define: ester • • • • An ester is a compound formed from the reaction between an acid and an alcohol.linkage.0. It should also be noted that In-Organic molecular bonds are generally weaker than Organic bonds.2% 30.html an organic compound produced by the reaction between a carboxylic acid and an alcohol www.foresight.4 2.2% 31.I think that the shift to "Off-Shore" high volume casting may have motivators beyond "CheapLabour".4% 54.0 2.7% 30. The Table below better illustrates the weight ratios for the range of Silicate/Ester binder resins. The range of ratio's for foundry usage in Core/Mold production is from 2.9% 56.5% 11. the -COOH group of the acid and the -OH group of the alcohol lose a water and become a -COO. is it possible that more industrially friendly environmental policies and lax Work-place Safety governance could be contributing to the trend? Or is it the whining North-American worker that thinks s/he is above carcinogenic compounds and would rather breathe clean air than Formaldehyde laden clouds of sulfur dioxide that is to blame? Perhaps the purpose of this course is to illustrate what NOT to use for sustainable production. Ratio The catalyzing Ester is added at a rate of 10 to 12% of the resin used to achieve consistent core/mold production. www.9% Wt. The various binder compositions are achieved by varying the ratio of Silica (SiO2) to Soda (Na2O) when mixing the resin with water.0 up to

Phenolic Urethane Family The final class of No-Bake/Air-Set binder families are the Phenolic Urethanes introduced in the 1970's. Advantages The Phenolic Urethane No-Bake system offers the fastest Cure-Time. The addition of the acidic ester causes the resin to gel and harden. The speed and degree of hardness achieved is related to the type of acidic ester used as a catalyst. Proprietary blends of the three Esters have been formulated to offer a finer degree of control over cure rate and speed. with the difference being an Acidic Liquid over the Vapour/Gas Amine catalyst used in Cold-Box production. followed by ethylene glycol diacetate which is a midrange curing speed Ester and lastly glycerol triacetate classed as a slow speed catalyst. Disadvantages The in-organic nature of the resin bonding impacts both shake-out and sand reclamation. Silicate/Ester is better suited to a broader range of applications covering both Ferrous & Non-Ferrous casting due to the absence of Nitrogen pick-up. absence of Sulfur.The sand must be above 15C. Disadvantages . Moisture absorption is less of a problem with this No-Bake system over the PUA Cold-Box system. The cured core/molds exhibit good strength characteristics. while providing excellent shakeout and sand reclamation properties. This system is most prominent in the production of small to medium sized core/molds. as the bond is not broken by heat. This class of binders is quite similar to the PUA cold-box system discussed in Module #9. The 3 (three) Ester catalysts that are commonly used within the foundry industry are glycerol diacetate that provides the fastest curing action. This can be improved by additives (what these additives are. with an inorganic resin composition. The binder and coated sand has long storage stability. and whether they drag down the environmental performance of the Silica Ester family is not discussed) The strength of the core/molds is also lower than that of the other No-Bake/Air-Set families. while maintaining a high work to strip time ratio. phosphorous or formaldehyde emissions. Advantages The primary advantages to this system are environmental compared to the Furan Family. and the grains are coated with the sodium silicate resin.

I buy mine in 2 ft by 8 ft by 2 inch sheets. I had read about Lost Foam. The results I had were so much better than what I expected that I've just continued on with it. Notice the el' Cheapo drill press.. Secondly. Also a module on current regulations. I picked this up at a flea . Generally I guesstimate the rough dimensions of a part and cut a chunk of foam with a hand saw at least 0. typical Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) and government regulatory bodies that oversee the Foundry industry would have been helpful. I just wanted to try it out on something quick & dirty. I think that an opportunity was lost to drill deeper into the binder systems with a greater emphasis on Work-place safety and environmental concerns. Closing comments. Lost-Foam Metal Casting This page was created in response to a few requests that I've had regarding Lost Foam Metal Casting method that I use.. During that experience I made a small hot wire foam cutter. Unfortunately I can't compare Lost Foam to Cavity Molding or Green Sand Casting as I've never used green sand. As well as the production of smoke and odors during the casting process (I wonder what they are? Are they healthy smokes and odors like those found in cigarettes???) The process is generally not used for ferrous (Steel) casting due to the presence of Nitrogen. Even though the cutter is fun to use. as it cuts easily and can be shaped with common hand tools. When I first built my Blast Furnace. I doubt the the larger bead type foam would be of much use.The presence of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) in the solvents can't be a good thing. and thought it would be a quick way to get started.. it does tend to distort the form as it cuts and requires quite a bit of hand finishing to clean-up plugs. This generally leaves enough material to shape as closely as possible to finished dimension. since I didn't have a Cope & Drag setup or the sand clay mixtures readily available I started to focus more on Foam.. This is great stuff to work with. This course (MTB72) is a necessary evil. In this case I'm cutting out an octagon shape that will be turned down to be a face plate for my lathe. I first started using foam for molding fiberglass. The foam that I use is construction insulation.25" over-size. The tight cell structure is a key feature. in that it is rather boring and pretty dry but did cover a fairly broad range of basic knowledge and gave an overview of industrial practices with regard to Binder systems.

Similarly you may loose your grip on the chisel and have it fly across the shop. Even though it's just foam. I'm using my index finger on my right hand as a light sensor as the block spins. I true-up the block into a cylinder with a wood rasp. During the shaping process I tend to use the sharp corners of the chisel and the face as shown in this picture. Generally I hand tighten the nuts to the point that the washers sink flat with the surface of the foam. Always angle the chisel point with the direction of rotation. After having shaped the block into a cylinder I use a woodworking chisel to turndown the cylinder into whatever shape I need. while my main press is bolted to a stationary 16ft bench. This is adequate to keep the rod from spinning inside the foam as you shape it. and just love it. After having tried at slower speeds I noticed that there is a greater ripping action on the foam leaving a more mottled finish requiring more effort to produce a piece. It seems that the faster the foam spins the better finish I for 5 or 6 bucks. It doesn't have to be a drill press. or you may find that the chisel gets drawn into the foam and ruins the piece. A nut and large flat washer are located on either side of the foam block to help keep it flat or perpendicular to the threaded rod. there's enough velocity on the outer edges to give you nasty burn if you rub-up against a turning edge. Obviously the threaded rod and foam block get chucked-up into an electric drill. as it's bolted to a table on wheels. I find the center. At this point I'm using both hands and trying to steady off the base of the press. Once the chunk is cut. . drill a hole to accept a length of 3/8ths threaded rod. but for me it seems to be easier than having the drill flopping all over the bench.

Since it requires so little force to cut through the foam. the Steel bucket. By using a wisk any debris is easily swept off the screen onto the floor. but pulleys are just as easy to make with the groove cut and finished. it's easy to use a steel rule as a guide without damaging the bit. wooden box. Unfortunately it was on a beach in northern Quebec during a . These pictures are of a square shouldered faceplate. I will have to get more sand. Here my assistant carefully sifts the sand through screen stapled to a shallow box. I recently picked up 20lbs of the finest sand I've ever seen.The last stage is to get a smooth finish without removing any more material than necessary. The tub on wheels is full of used sand that I have yet to sift. Here I'm using my trusty (knock-off) dremel tool with a quarter inch routing bit. Not that the specifics of this casting have much to do with Lost-Foam Casting but I thought this was a good illustration of how easy foam is to deal with. I wanted 4 slots cut squarely on the face. the screened sand is poured off into a container. but I have enough to pour off 3 castings at a time with this set-up. The factory glaze or finish should be broken while on the press with the sand paper as well. and old pot are what I use for pouring my castings into. I like to start with a 200 grit sand paper to remove any little flakes and finish with a flat metal file. The factory finish tends to cause a warp or curl on pieces once the opposite side is cut. This problem is more pronounced with flat square pieces.

As this happens you are pouring and MUST KEEP pouring. it's always in the back of your mind that liquid metal could end-up flying in all directions whenever you encounter an unknown variable. I opted to use my trusty soup pot. just dry loose screened sand. petro-bond. I always find that there is a split second when the metal pools ontop of the sprue and then there is a quite poof with a puff of black smoke. Now all that is left to do is is clean-up your tools. I start by poking the top of the sprue to see how solid it feels. I can never tell much from the poke test but it does tend to kill at least 15 to 20 seconds. There is no clay. water. This picture doesn't show it well. this only adds to your anxiety that the pour didn't turnout. Placed the faceplate plug roughly in the center and covered it with more loose. As I've said in other pages. This is the first time I'll be trying steel pins to hold 2 pieces together. pace around the mold pot. Here is the faceplate plug with a 9/16th shaft through the bore and a sprue shaped and pinned into place. you want to pour the metal directly onto the top of the sprue as fast as it can take the metal. oil. . but it's in Ontario and about to be put to the test. To make matters worse the sand does look like it is shifting slightly. poured in about an inch and half of loose sand. and generally fishing trip. Ultimately. It took some convincing to get the pilot to let me bring it back. there is a knack to pouring fast but carefully. Though it may seem paranoid to be fearful of any changes to process. dry sand. After about 10 minutes I'm almost crazed with anticipation. This stuff is so fine it feels soapy when you run your fingers through it. but I try and create a natural funnel with the sand to help direct the metal onto the foam sprue.

My slots seem to have come out fine as well. After a bit of clean-up with a wire brush and file. I grab a large set of pliers or channel locks and pull it out of the sand.. The finish from the French sand also has noticeably improved this casting. so is the pipe to place the bore hole. There is a slight concave property to the face plate that will be machined off.This is it. I think that this is from not taking off enough of the factory foam finish.. Compared to previous pieces there is less pitting. Steel pins are OK. the sprues are cut-off. The moment of truth. . This time everything when well. Hopefully this helps you explore the possibilities of LostFoam Casting.