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

A block of wood. parts.. as like the un-carved block it holds all possibilities within it's bounds. The choice of furnace type is based on these 4 factors.. it can be anything and everything that is imaginable that would fit within it's volumetric dimensioning. Metal Alloy Type Zinc Aluminum Magnesium Copper Cast Irons High Manganese Steel Monel (70N. Melting of Metals A prerequisite to casting is the use of metal in a molten state. And such is the mound of molders sand before it takes the shape of the casting that is to be. The trend specifically in the automotive market is the creation of complex castings that are replacing similarly complex parts that had previously been stamped. and the current trend towards parts into a full fledged foundry. • • • • Alloy Type Metal Quality Production Demands Economics Alloys have a wide spectrum of temperatures that they melt at.. In it's virgin state it holds the myriad of possibilities. Over the course of the last 8 or 9 months that I've been letting the idea of extending theworkshop. art pieces etc that I could cast with the idea that it has business potential. it's tremendous potential. The very idea of metal casting is such that it evokes the tenets of the Taoist "Un-carved block". my many relatives and friends have suggested ideas for object.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 .. the list below should illustrate this point. I agree that all of their suggestions hold promise. The transformation of metal from solid to molten is accomplished in a variety of ways through the use of various types of furnaces. but the true potential of a foundry operation is that it is not constrained to a particular line or market. sitting on the bench before the carver.The final sub-section of Module 1 deals with the ideology of casting. machined or fabricated by a combination of both. tools.

. which can adversely effect the chemical properties of the alloy being melted.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 vaporization. or have a tilting mechanism with a fixed position crucible in the furnace. Furnace Types Crucible Furnaces Pictured to the right is theworkshop. Pictured to right is another of theworkshop. but is a Crucible Furnace. Oil and electricity are other ways to fire the furnace.. Similarly the types of refractory used are matched to the basicity or acidity of the metal and/or its resultant (Dross or slag). this one is fired with Hardwood or Charcoal. well as it turns out it isn't really a blast furnace. maintenance and operating labour. The economics of furnace selection relate to factors of capital depreciation. The basic premise is that the heat. Crucible furnaces are used in smaller foundry operations that melt non-ferrous alloys.. The Crucible Furnace is one of the oldest methods of meting's original "Fat-Boy Blast Furnace". as well as the fuel and power original designs. is absorbed by the crucible and transferred to the metal until it eventually melts. Though Propane/LPG. This is an oil-fired furnace that can melt a broader range of alloys with higher heat capabilities. 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.. These furnaces can be stationary as pictured above.. . 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.

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

This furnace is beyond the typical home or hobby foundry... The considerations of pH matching refractories is stressed in the text more so with Arc furnaces. with the Orange depicting the heavy copper coils that surround the Crucible & Charge. Just so you know. 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. Alumina is a personal point of interest.. It is a heavy Copper tube that usually requires active cooling by passing a flow . But like all things the drawback is the potential for drawing dross or surface impurities into the melt if the stirring action is excessive... Induction Furnaces . specifically that the metal undergoes a circulatory action or stirring once molten. as the Titanium IS THE 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. and so is reflected in this sentence. 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 Crucible can be either pushed up and out of the core via a ram... or the crucible can be fixed inside the coil and a tilting mechanism employed for the pouring process. Acidic Refractories are Silica Dioxide (SiO2) based & Base type refractories can be either Calcium Oxide (CaO) or Magnesium Oxide (MgO). or the Coil/shell assembly can be lifted up & away from the crucible. There are some unusual properties of the coreless furnace that are worth noting.. The illustration is a "Cross-Section" view. but curiously it can't be considered an In-Direct Arc.. but the arc is struck above the metal charge and is typically just one electrode..Core/Channel or Coreless To the right is a basic Coreless Induction furnace. The neutral refractories are typically Alumina (Al2O3) and the less common Chrome Oxide (Cr2O3).. This is beneficial in uniform distribution of temperature and alloy chemistry through the melt. The electrodes can be either graphite or carbon.. and are selected to match the type of metal being melted. 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.. Titanium is a good example of a vacuum process arc furnace.The high temp capacity of this furnace lends itself better toward ferrous casting than non ferrous. or is it??? The In-Direct Arc furnace is similar in principle. 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)..

. The illustration to the right is of the most basic "Core/Channel" Furnace. 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. or I'd be out building one now rather than summarizing these notes. and conversely High Density = Low Freq. completing the "Secondary Coil" circuit.of water through to employs "Cored/Channel" induction furnaces in the near future. 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. before the primary can be energized. Copper based alloys are more efficiently melted with AC voltage frequencies between 60 and 100Hz (Hertz)..) There are issues. In closing the Induction Furnace section here are some cool equations and data. and the maintenance of the Primary Coil is more accessible. The size and shape of the metal containment area is more flexible..... The distinction for the less mentally adroit is the addition of a "Core". For these reason's there are no plans for theworkshop. The core acts as a transfer medium for the EMF or Flux (electro-magnetically speaking NOT Chemometallurgically). No specifications are given for the Wall thickness or inner diameter of the copper tubing. Lastly. 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. Sweeping generalization. not the least of which is the requirement of a molten heel of metal to completely encircle the core. the Coreless Induction furnace is capable of utilizing various frequencies to accommodate different Alloy types.. Core/Channel Induction Furnaces are typically employed to hold Volumes of molten metals at a molten state for continuous pour operations. 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 exam. Low Density = High Freq.

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

These would be considered hobby or low volume units by comparison.. Rust and sand from the initial charge.The tuyere's typically encircle the base with 6 or more nozzles facing inward.... scrap Iron (or possibly Iron Ore) and a Fluxing agent (Limestone) to aid in removing impurities in the Iron. The Limestone (or Dolomite) produce oxide(s) that are pH "Basic". but my lawyer advises me that I have a case if either is marked wrong.. Dolomite is similar in that it is a source of Calcium Oxide (CaO) but also is a source of Magnesium Oxide (MgO). it likely will not have a 1 ton capacity. Other enhancements that you can incorporate are exhaust heat exchangers to preheat the incoming air.. and it's not that important.. From the time cupola is fired-up to the time it is shut down or "Dropping Bottom" is called a "Campaign".) is 2000lbs scrap. A campaign can run for several weeks on larger Cupolas.125 parts fuel. 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. the resultant slag will have better fluid properties for removal when this balance is achieved. The Flux is Limestone (or Dolomite) and is added in specific proportions to the Coke (fuel) and the metal in the charge...... 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. I'm hesitant to start firing off it's equations as I just don't have the data at hand.. The balance is determined by the ratios of Metal to Flux to Fuel. 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.4% to 3. there is a slight discrepancy between the text and the lecture notes. I want this basic ratio to be included beyond the scope of the study notes should I ever decide to build such a furnace. and each tuyere fed off of a common wind-box..125.. 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... The Limestone is essentially Calcium Carbonate (CaCO3). this is a mixture of Coke. .. 25 : 1 : 3. unless answered out of context.. Ash.. Both may appear on a test or exam. While the molten metal is taken off from a hole called a "Tap"..8% carbon and a production capacity of over 30 tons per hour. The approximate dimensioning for commercial Cupolas is determined by the inside diameter ranging from 18" up thru 160". this is limited to approx 700-800F for conventional refractory lined Cupolas and extended to 1000-1200F on the water cooled Tuyere models. 80lbs lime stone and 250lbs of Coke. Yielding a ratio of 25 Parts Scrap to 1 part Flux to 3.... The materials removed in a properly formed slag are Coke.. A typical charge (according to the Lecture notes. 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. a source of Calcium Oxide when heated.. The materials entering the top of the cupola is called a "Charge or Burden". These units typically are used for Cast Iron production with a carbon content level of 2.

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

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

Reduced Gas and Moisture . Disadvantages . Advantages . this is the end of the "Conventional Molding types Precision Molding and Casting Permanent Mold . Copper or aluminum (mold material selection is based on the metal type to be cast) for repeated usage. as well as reduced productivity due to the process being relatively slow. cost of operation. tighter dimensional accuracy.. and a stronger mold.are Superior dimensional accuracy and surface finish. Dry Sand Molding This is the Green Sand process. The Surface can be dried with either Hot Air.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. while retaining comparible "Shake-out" characteristics to Green Sand molds. but with the addition of heat to bake the mold at 400 to 600F. Advantages . 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. the baking process allows for greater mechanical strength. 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.The mechanical strength of the mold. cast iron. This process is employed for medium to heavy castings such as gears.are Labour and material costs compared to Green Sand molding.. This process is well suited to the Aluminum. Zinc and Magnesium family of alloys. and better surface finishes due to the reduction mold moisture and/or the application surface coats.are the capital cost of Bake Ovens. Shell Molding or Croning Process This process uses a heat activated Resin/Catalyst combination with silica sand. 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. and higher casting complexity. 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 . reduced production rates due to drying process of molds. graphite. This method is employed for medium to Heavy and Heavy castings..Gravity feed This class of mold is typically made of tool steel. .. and reduced production relative to Green Sand. Disadvantages . Disadvantages . ie porosity/pinhole gas defects.Capital and labour costs. The 2 halves of the mold are glued together with an appropriate adhesive. housings etc.

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

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

.. and Steve Chastain's Sand casting Manual Vol 1 & 2 is yet another perspective... The metal being poured can be considered in terms of a.... but I fear that more practical information will be based on a sound understanding of this. please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 4.. 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. and has a eutectic temperature of 183ºC (straight from google). Ipso Facto Ergo Sum. 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). Water is a classic example. Solidification of Metals. earth what ever.. eutectic solder paste has a composition of 63% tin (Sn) and 37% lead (Pb). Properties of Thermal Transfer within a Casting The application of thermal energy transfer theory to metal casting requires consideration in the following properties. and how the alloy being poured impacts the process as well as the mold material's affect. This chapter is primarily concerned this what happens after that metal actually is poured into a mold... 144BTU of energy transfer occurs to change 1 pound of water into 1 pound of ice at 32F.this is the end of Course notes for Module 2 MATL MTB70. and obviously 0% Lead (Pb) & 100% Tin (Sn). 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. for the context of alloying. I think a legitimate concern. with enough variation in presentation to make the idea's less vague.. This following level of detail is not required to make castings. When a metal is poured a similar energy transfer occurs between the metal mold interface. 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). which would be pure metals.... Assigned Text (Chapter 13 Not 7 as noted in the course notes). 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. .. Eutectic being a particularly difficult concept for me to fully understand. The process of solidification. Google is proving to be fantastic. The energy is transferred from the Liquid water to the air. through a series of transitions. Beyond the lecture notes. 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..

a source of liquid metal has to be drawn upon to keep the casting dimensionally accurate. as the volume of metal is decreasing in relation to the percentage of metal that has solidified. and the weight of the metal remains constant. gates and risers) determines the amount of energy that must be transferred to complete the phase transition from liquid to solid. the energy transfer continues through the layer of solid metal toward the mold material. gates. Physical Dimensioning through the Phase Transition. shape. As the energy is traveling in one direction the solidification process is traveling in the opposite direction. Molding Material is the recipient of the energy being transferred. there is an expectation that the casting will be proportionally smaller than the pattern from which it was cast. Essentially there will always be a cavity defect. Logically.The shape and size of the casting. runners. As density is a function of weight and volumetric displacement. The manner in which the casting solidifies (as determined by the alloy. 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. 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. unlike water that has a lower density when Solid (frozen) than in it's liquid state (Ice Floats). thin sections of castings will solidify before thick sections of the casting. thermal characteristics and density of the material also influence the solidification process of a given casting. Metals typically have a lower density when molten then when solid. The shape and complexity of a casting influences the efficiency with which the thermal transfer occurs. . the volumetric displacement must be reduced to raise the density of a specific qty of metal. so the composition. size. runners. 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. 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. meaning the entire outer skin of the casting. sprue. Directional Solidification The solidification process begins at the mold-metal interface. 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. but the idea is to position the defect in the riser not the casting itself. As molten metals typically have a lower density. mold. as it is related to the surface area of the metal-mold interface. In closing the process of "Directional Solidification" is accomplished by orienting the Sprue. The source of liquid metal is from the Risers that act as reservoirs to feed the casting during the solidification phase.

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

I've opted to pass on the diagrams and the math as it's not an essential building block (or so I hope). 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. Pure metals exhibit ideal solidification characteristics and introduce a point of reference when consideration of solidification is turned to alloyed compositions... Two new terms are introduced "Liquidus & Solidus" that denote the points in the graph where phase transition begins and ends for the solidification process... Control of the Solidification Rate By understanding the factors associated with the solidification process. Curiously the area between Liquidus & Solidus has a rather mundane name "Mushy Zone". we can influence the speed at which solidification occurs. As an Alloy has 2 or more constituent elements... The speed of solidification has a direct bearing in such issues as grain size within the solid casting.. Shrinkage and associate defects. as well as a new issue "Segregation". 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. through the use of molding material. and the point of fusion has been expanded to cover a range of temperature drop over the energy dissipation. 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". and orientation of casting components.. The solidification rate can be graphed for various alloys.... 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.. mold materials etc. I personally would have preferred Zonis Indeterminus. or Soliqus. . The illustrations to the upper right depict a pure metal and the flat thermal property of solidification.. such as risers etc. the point to start at is with a pure elemental composition..

Solidification Modeling The illustration on the right has 5 steps shown A thru E. toward the top are smaller random "Equiaxed" grains that form at a slower rate. The crystalline or lattice structure is growing by the solidification of the molten metal. 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. gates. 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.. 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. This cross-section is supposed to illustrate the region of solidification from the mold wall upward to the liquid/solid interface.. At the base of the structure to the right are fine grains that formed very quickly at 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. If directional solidification is encouraged though proper placement of Sprue. 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... but at least I know what I'm trying to depict. have a smoke and review the disjointed factoids presented thus far. So. runners and Risers. and this is the freeze wave discussed earlier. millions of nucleus form near simultaneously. This segregation of constituents impacts grains size and composition.. Grain Structure and Growth The illustrations are getting looser and dirtier as we go along here. . The energy transfer between the liquid and solid interface is conducted through this dendrite structure toward the metal mold interface... At this point get a beer.

And again. or using a solid such as chlorine with an inverted cup that will plunge the chlorine to the bottom of the melt. The next is the columnar zone that are longer directional grains that grow toward the liquid metal. .. In summary the faster the better. such as introducing wet charge materials into the melt... while narrow mushy zones (fast phase transitions) promote columnar grain structures is still somewhat meaningless.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. 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. please turn over the tape to continue listening to Module 5. Since Hydrogen is highly soluble in molten metal. 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.. Chastain's Foundry manual Vol 2. the only variable that can influence grain formation and reduce elemental segregation is the time required to transfer the point of fusion energy. 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. The elemental nucleation and dendritic growth displaces molten elements and results in micro porosity. I think that this is what Metallurgy & Heat treating will be based upon. scavenging the hydrogen in the process. or poor foundry practices. and to avoid holding the metal in a molten state any longer than is required. The generalization that wide mushy zones (slow phase transitions) promote Equiaxed Grains and micro segregation. Design of Risers and Feeding of Castings References . 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. lecture text & audio (No video) This is a helluva way to start Module 5.this is the end of Course notes for Module 4 MATL MTB70. Porosity Defects The most subtle of the porosity defects is caused by alloyed melts that have a wide mushy zone transition phase to solid. . Since any given alloy has a static Mushy Zone based upon it's composition and the mass of the casting.. the third is the equiaxed zone of small random grains in the center of the casting. except that columnar grains are stronger and contain a better elemental distribution through the alloy. it is best to avoid. super-heating metals beyond their melting temperature.AFS Text Chapter 16 (not 8). The most obvious porosity defects are caused by the entrapment of gases within the molten solution. As the chlorine turns to a gas it will form hydrogen chloride..

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

5384 As an aside the generic Windows calculator does not perform Sqrt function (or as far as I found).4707/1728=0.7703 2) + (2 * 3.1415 * 7.0541 SA:V for a sphere Shape #2 .html Surface Area = 2(pi r 2) + (2 pi r)* h Surface Area = 2(3.1887=r3 412.1415 * 12= r2 The link below should offer an on-line Cube/Cube Root Calculator www.7703) * 12 Surface Area =798.4620 SA:V for a 12" tall Cylinder .csgnetwork.4707 inches 2 And Finally the Cylindrical SA:V Ratio (with height 12") 798.csgnetwork.5438/1728=0.Cylinder of Height 12" Volume=[pi] r2 h 1728=3.44422 Surface Area =93.1728/4.5438 Inches2 And Finally the Spherical SA:V Ratio 93. www.5384=r3 At this point I believe that r = the cubed root of 412.1415* 6.8379 r=6. the calculator at the link below does.1415 * 6....html Surface Area =4 [pi] r2 Surface Area =4 * 3.1415 * r2 * 12 1728/3.8379 = r2 again I believe that r = the square root of 45.

1415 * 23.3528 inches 2 And Finally the Cylindrical SA:V Ratio (with height 1") .Shape #3 . www.1415 * 1= r2 550. the exercise calls for a plate that is 1" thick. the calculator at the link below* 23..5000 SA:V for a 12" Cube Shape #4 ..0394 = r2 again I believe that r = the square root of 550.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.Cylinder of Height 1" Now don't get all wrapped-up in semantics..4529 2) + (2 * 3. but we both know a plate is just a very squat cylinder Volume=[pi] r2 h 1728=3..0394 r=23.html Surface Area = 2(pi r 2) + (2 pi r)* h Surface Area = 2(3.4529 And still the generic Windows calculator does not perform Sqrt function (or as far as I found).4529) * 1 Surface Area = 3603.1415 * r2 * 1 1728/3.

. As I'm generally as lazy as the next guy. Proper Riser Positioning and Dimensioning With the knowledge of low SA:V riser geometry.4620 SA:V for a 12" tall Cylinder 0. 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. V. 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)... After writing the test and scoring rather poorly. while a 1" tall cylinder would be somehow lacking in desirable riser properties. I kinda like the cylinder.0852 SA:V for a 1" tall Cylinder Below are the SA:V's of the 4 shapes to be compared 0.. they are inversely proportional (in an ideal world).Risers are the last to solidify 3 . or email me and I'll send it as an attachment. All of the above is in support of directional solidification. Right click on the link and select "Save As.Risers are attached to the heaviest sections of the casting 2 . it would be safe.. as it is a practical shape for molding. Below are 4 points about the Riser/Casting Relationship 1 ... 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. Geometric shape and dimensioning.3603.. low SA:V's cool slowly and make good Risers.0541 SA:V for a sphere 0." the file is created with Excel sa-v calculator. one would think that a spherical riser would be the best (though somewhat impractical to implement)....5000 SA:V for a 12" Cube 2.A casting that has more than one heavy section requires at least one riser per heavy section .xls If the link doesn't work give me a couple of days I've never done this before. 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.0852 SA:V for a 1" tall Cylinder Given the generalization that opened the SA:V dialog. I decided to revisit the math and the relationship between SA. 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. I would guess that if the diameter was equal to or greater than the section it is connecting to the riser..

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.

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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.

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

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

low & high pressure zones that promote aspiration of mold gases into the flow. Again. In the broadest terms this path should be "Balanced" with the model of heating or AC ductwork serving as a good illustration. The Runner System The runner system is fed by the well and is the path that the gates are fed from. By providing curved radius changes in direction the above effects are still at .. The R-Ext acts as a cushion to absorb the forward momentum or kinetic energy of the fluid flow. The issue of sharp corners (both inner and outer) create turbulence. notice that the runner becomes proportionally shallower at the point where an in-gate creates an alternate path for the liquid flow. The "Runner Extension" is a "Dead-End" that is placed after the last gate. or un-proportioned gate/runner sizes. 2. The Runner path should promote smooth laminar flow by a balanced volumetric flow.. and can draw mold material (sand) into the flow. 3. and avoiding sharp or abrupt changes in direction.Choke or sprue base area is 1/5th the area of the well. 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. An Ideal Runner is also proportioned such that it maintains a constant volumetric flow through virtually any cross-sectional area.the Runner is positioned above the midpoint of the well's depth. In the illustration. but is relevant to the discussion. the primary causes of turbulence are sharp corners.The well depth is twice the runner depth. The Gating System The Gates (in this case) accommodate a directional change in the fluid flow and deliver the metal to the Casting cavity. 1. The well reduces the velocity of the fluid flow and acts as a reservoir for the runners and gates as they fill. The 2 (two) dashed blue areas when added together form a relationship to the dashed blue area of the Runner.The area below the sprue is the "Well". The R-Ext also acts as a "Dross/Gas Trap" for any materials generated and picked-up along the flow of the runner. None of this is good. the design objective is to promote laminar flow. which forms a relationship to the Choke or base of the Sprue Area.

The Continuity Equation can resolve for any term if 2 others are known. the passage expands to a cross-sectional area A3 (1" by 1".play but at a reduced level. 1 sq"). 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 me. (this is counter to what I initially thought).. 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. This formula only works if the fluid flow is a liquid that does NOT compress (that applies to all molten metals). the passage narrows to a cross-sectional area A2 (. Continuity Equation . By proportioning the gating system.75" by .uncompressible) V=Velocity of flow A=Area (Cross-section) . Ratios and Design Equations Everything covered so far is comprehensible. The best analogy I can see is that of a performance tuned exhaust system or header on an engine. a more uniform flow is promoted with near equal volumes of metal entering the mold from all points. Similarly sharp angles impact the solidification process and may inhibit "Directional Solidification" with cross-sectional freezing.. but the math below hopefully offers some insight into quick approximations for simple designs. and intuitive on a conceptual level. Q= Rate of Flow (Constant . 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.. while the gates closest to the sprue would feed the least. and more in-depth calculations for complex systems. In an unproportioned system the furthest gates would feed the most metal. relative to flow Velocity and Volumetric flow over unit time.. I stripped a lot of the detail and formulas to have the basic flow better illustrated.This formula allows calculation of cross-sectional Areas.. 1 sq"). Formulas. 0.5625 sq"). 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.75"..) Also.

44"/sec of Flow. Choke : Runner : Gate Ratio(s) The base of the Sprue and Choke are the same thing.If Q were 0. While Areas A4 & A5 are added together as flow does pass through these points simultaneously. Q=0.75 : 0. I believe that this example would resolve to a pressurized flow of 1 : 0. and it would appear that the Gate(s) would equal or be larger than the Runner(s). text. The ratios between the cross-sectional Area can be grouped into either Pressurized or Unpressurized. Chastian's Vol 2 are.25/1 or 0. . Since the Area is almost half. The Continuity Eq. ie H : L equates to an increase in velocity while a L : H equates to a drop in velocity. Velocity=0.. the velocity has to almost double.25 cubic inches per Sec of flow. at the point A2. Pressurized ..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.66 Sq Inch A4 = 1st Gate = 0.66 Unpressurized . A1= Choke = 1 Sq Inch A2 = 1st Runner X-Sec Area = 0.25/0. is simplified with the use of ratios as the velocity is inversely proportional between any 2 adjacent ratio values.5625=0.. Common Ratio's noted in the lecture notes.33 Sq inch A5 = 2nd Gate = a system where the gate and runner cross-sectional areas are either equal or less than the choke cross-sectional area.75 Sq Inch A3 = 2nd Runner X-Sec Area = 0.25"/sec.. 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.The key distinction is that the Runner must have a X-sec area greater than the Choke.

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

The speed and easy of inspection lacks any record keeping and may be subjective or inconsistent if performed by personnel of varying experience. though I personally have never repaired a casting. 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. This method is has a labour cost associated with it. For tons of detail on this exciting technology (and man is it ever EXCITING!!!) http://vsd.. The casting is removed from the feeder network. The manual method is a tremendous amount of work and has a tangible expense associated with it. Visual Inspection ...The casting is inspected visually every step by every person that touches the unit.. This is becoming more common place as technological advances are made. Castings that are obvious defects should not even be cut away unless necessary for in terms of quality blades (that can only last up to 10 Castings with 3 to 6 gates in my experience). 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. Obviously these tests are carried out on sample(s) that would be representative of a casting run.. the methods that are discussed are. 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. though is comparatively low. The lecture notes specify the option of repairs to castings at this point as well.cfm .Obviously is Surface Quality comparison to a reference or based on the experience of the person performing the inspection. 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. though not a component of this module is worth talking about briefly.. 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. there are a number of methods ranging from a manual hack saw through to a plasma cutter. either it is kept or re-melted. Destructive & Non-Destructive Inspection Destructive inspection.. measuring tensile and shearing strength of castings as well as impacting various surface areas to determine hardness. I use a hammer and a 4 1/2" angle grinder with a Zircon Flap-disk. The Fettling process is the removal of fins or minor deformations with some mix of manual and machinery assisted labour. 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. Circular Saws (of various orientations including Hand. Table and Chop) ensuring that the appropriate blade is matched to the alloy.) as well as shears and cutting torches.pennnet. Depending on the alloy there are numerous power tools that can be used including Band Saws. though cleaning is required regardless... and typically where the casting is being used in an application that requires very strict quality control such as vehicular applications... Currently I use a Sawz-All reciprocating saw and have shaved the per casting cutting time by 2/3rds to 15 min typically. These would include cutting castings through cross-sectional areas in pursuit of Sub-surface porosity defects.

requires fewer material specific handling considerations.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. the wave is reflected and the reflection is examined on a display. in that it can be performed faster. The noted drawbacks are the limitation of testing to Ferro-Magnetic castings. The reflected wave can indicate a properly formed casting or identify internal fractures or structures that could not be otherwise found. offers less clean-up. I'd think about implementing some sort of PACS or Picture Archive Communications System. as the range or spectrum of detection of a sensor can be tailored to significantly extend beyond the range of the human eye. the fundamental process is the application of a magnetic field to the casting. and can detect defects up to 0. 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. Personally I think that this process also would lend itself well to a Vision Systems solution. 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). This is definitely not for smaller foundries.This is an emerging technology that is similar to both US and MPI.This inspection system works on the same principles of Medical Ultra Sonography..This process is limited to Ferrous castings and requires less overhead than the name implies. the penetrant is wiped away and the casting is inspected for residue that has properties that make for easy inspection or detection. The chemical composition of the effective dye(s) requires specific handling procedures that will be available off their respective MSDS. Magnetic Particle Inspection (MPI) . as well as lends it's self to automated and archival processing. This inspection system offers superior sub-surface analysis than other processes listed so far. . This process offers very rapid analysis of casting integrity.. In this case the medium the wave propagates through would be the casting. An energy or acoustic wave is propagated through a medium via a transducer. 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. Eddy Current Inspection (ECI) . The cost and intellectual overhead of implementing such a system is significant. Ultrasonic Inspection . and this process does not work well with coarse grained castings due to reflection by the grain structure.25" below the casting surface. potential for residual magnetism in the casting. MPI offers advantages over LPI. Also of consideration is the ability to records results for archival purposes and defect analysis. USI does require reasonably flat and or smooth surfaces for the transducer to propagate and receive the reflected waves.

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. handling and filing (for archival purposes) far out weighs the other savings. text and 5 video and watch for other courses that are part of this same program. the sand must not melt and it's physical dimensioning should remain intact. The savings are always touted to be on the cost of the film. My guess is that this won't be cheap. The popularity of sand as a molding material is due to it's abundance and relatively inexpensive cost. These notes are based on AFS Text Chapter 18. lets generalize that most sands have a melting point above 3000F.. 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. density and/or atomic weight of the cross section being examined.ECI can diagnose and identify grain structure and offer a level of elemental composition that USI can-not at this time. chemicals and processing. and the utility of the mold is the space that it does not consume.. lecture audio. but the labour associated with processing. where does sand come from?" . 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.. Film is being replaced with Crystal cartridges that can be digitized and erased for re-use. Radiography .. "Daddy. . the mold material has to withstand the heat of the metal without melting. any radiology system being install today MUST BE digital... Although the temptation exists to develop an archival data structure in house to save on costs... True there are savings. ABOUT SAND Whutz-Up with Sand? Since Molten Metal is hot.. 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 techniques. losing it's shape. Since Sand Molding is done with Sand. This area has undergone Radical change over the last 10 years. Since High Temperature is a subjective term. If you are creating castings that have a requirement for Radiographic Inspection. thank you for taking the time to visit theworkshop. The X or Gamma rays are absorbed or modified by the thickness. size etc.... you'll likely be called upon to produce sample images to the customer's QC dept. an open architecture approach should be adopted to facilitate data sharing between the foundry and customers. If you have to ask what the cost is.this is the end of Course notes for Module 7 and MATL MTB70. you can't afford it.

50 0.03 3800(2093) Chromite Black 4.2 49. and casting sand falls into a broad range of grain sizes that span 2mm to 0. Sand Chemistry & Property Table Composition % Silica SiO2 98..34 8. I believe that like the infinite constant Pi all answers to this module are contained within the chart above.65-2..0037 Slightly Acidic Rounded This chart is important. Thermal Expansion.8 7.94 0.37 96-103 0. why the fuck do you think I re-typed it (it's in the text.2 3400(1875) Olivine Green 3. 1/12" to 1/500" or #10 to #200 Mesh screening.6-4.018 Temp Reaction Acidic (pH) Shape Varied Olivine 41.0016 TiO2 0.7 152-183 0. Sand has many sources and compositions.34 19. Ziron and Chromite. The following charts are based on AFS data listed in AFS pub "Technology of Metal Casting" ISBN #0-87433-257-5.049 Fe2O3 0.75 45..012 Melting Point F(C) 3110(1710) Properties Silica Colour White/Brown Specific Gravity 2. Weight (measured by Bulk Density and Specific Gravity) and pH.67 Bulk Density 95-97 Thermal Expansion 0.8 21.I'm glad you asked.. Of the numerous properties the most important are Shape.5 65 1 0. it's a slide.82 MgO 0. it's even referred to in the audio files and I think references are made to it in the video clips). it's in the lecture.27-3. terms and ranges of measurement used in this course. Olivine. These types of sand have various properties that effect their application to the broad spectrum of foundry work. Melting point.0083 Basic Angular Chromite 1. Of the various bodies that influence and advise the metal casting industry the AFS (American Foundry Society) will provide the standards.3-4.0045 Basic/Neutral Angular Ziron 33.5 156-165 0.019 CaO 0.05mm. The AFS states that sand is "Mineral Material" regardless of chemical composition.4 1. .1 0. but all sands have their common origin in the fact that they are granular material resulting from the disintegration or crushing of rock.. The four basic sand compositions discussed in this course are Silica.031 Cr2O3 ZrO2 Al2O3 0..03 0.19 4600(2538) Ziron White 4. The Chemical composition of these sands provides some insight into why the other properties are attributed to the various types.

.. Key Info.. Melting point 3800F/2093C. Olivine sand is typically used in the Non-Ferrous foundry sector. as it comes from Africa. and has a price tag to reflect its point of origin. unpredictable thermal expansion and binding properties to name a few. 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. an angular shape and basic/neutral pH. Key Info. Key Info. In North America Pure Silica Sand is mined primarily in the Illinois and Missouri States from the St. Zirconium Silicate or ZrSio4 to his friends is found primarily in Australia. Chromite FeCr2O4 This is an African Sand.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. river banks etc. but I will note that it is used in Steel foundries. Melting point 3400F/1875C...004"/inch. Ziron This is the last of the four sand types and has the fanciest name. High thermal Expansion 0. The Forsterite is crushed to reduce the mineral to a granular form. 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. These organic and mineral contaminants effect castings in numerous ways including but not limited to introduction of carbon into the cast.0083"/inch. and as a facing or core material where it's superior thermal characteristics are called upon. a varied shape and acidic pH. With the most stable thermal . logically increasing the cost due to production of the material. Peter deposit. rivers. Low thermal Expansion 0. There is so much I could say about Chromite FeCr2O4. Lakes.018"/inch. all other silica deposits tend to have varying degrees of organic and mineral contaminants that must be removed prior to classification as Casting Sand. Florida and California. Low thermal Expansion 0. Melting point 3110F/1710C. an angular shape and basic pH. but won't as it's not germane to this discussion..

. Melting point 4600F/2538C.. Key Info.. but all will come clear in time. as this is an average it may be somewhat deceptive... Similarly Silica sand having a relatively lower melting point compared to the other sands. The AFS gfn covers average grain size and distribution. 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 Iron.003"/inch.) AFS Grain Fineness Number (gfn) & Grain Distribution Words like "Fine. Just so you know. an AFS gfn of 65 to 140 with 100 as the most common.. And that's the point!!! Don't confuse individual grain Mesh #'s with AFS gfn. Thank God the American Foundry Society stepped in and implemented a numeric scale that does away with all that inaccuracy. above that temp it changes to a Beta Quartz state that is typified by significant expansion. Dispose of as the law tells you.. an elliptical or rounded shape and slightly acidic pH. though it doesn't say specifically that the sand itself is hazardous. (I don't really get the fluxing part.. 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 .. And another minor point that might be worth knowing Zircon has trace elements of Uranium and Thorium . scabs. 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. The results of this expansion can be mold wall movement.220 range... as the gfn is an AVERAGE!!! Why such a range??? Too coarse a gfn is reflected in the surface of the casting. Medium & Coarse" are somewhat vague and subject to interpretation in the abscence of some form of relativistic 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. Rat's tails etc...... Lowest thermal Expansion 0. So why all the hype on Thermal Expansion??? Although Silica Sand is the most common sand. . 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. no big deal. Oh and before I forget. Buckles.. that High refractoriness can aid in "Directional Solidification" if your a keener and can figure that stuff out when you make your mold..

. I know from painful experience if you can't pass gas. And for high production foundries the sand has to be cooled prior to re-use if the production cycle is that rapid.. spent binder material and any metallic refuse need to be removed. well.. So you have some sand.. Sand Reclamation Man does this Module never end. there will be unpleasant results. then it would stand to reason that you would want that distribution to stay. Or just a conveyor that is dumping the sand into a cone shaped pile.. Jaw Crusher Pneumatic Scrubbers Vibratory Reduction Shot Blast Reduction Mechanical Sand Scrubber . get that check book out as it ain't gonna be cheap.000's of dollars to ensure that the AFS gfn distribution is retained. "Sand Fines" (sub-AFS gfn sized material that results from mechanical handling of the sand). Sand Handling So if your sand is a distribution of Mesh sizes that is averaged to an AFS gfn. the fines grains move to the bottom. As I said. you selected it based on the type that suits your casting specifications. Mechanical Reclamation Processes The following are examples of various methods of mechanically reclaiming spent mold sands.. Consider a tumbler of sand rotating on an inclined axis. The above illustrates examples of "Segregation" and will impact casting quality if the AFS gfn distribution is not retained. 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.. You've employed 100's of 1. distributed.. Along with breaking-up the spent mold. and the coarse grains move to the top.. 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..And again on a personal note.

Excessive amounts of cured resins that accumulate in the sand impact the LOI or Loss on Ignition rating of the sand. beyond the typical checks to ensure that the proper qty and condition of the material reflects what was ordered..gfn (Grain Fineness Number) Refer to previous Module for general info.. 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. so it is best to get easily twice as much as you think will be the required weight. Ha!!!) To perform the test a predetermined qty of sand is removed from the batch. I assume that the weight will be different for each foundry.. The sand is weighed to determine a start point or reference. but once that qty is established all testing will be done with that target weight.this is employed when dealing with chemically bonded sands that use a resin that has cured and can not be re-activated.. 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. machine or transfer point to be tested. Always Follow AFS-1101-0-S specification to ensure consistent sampling. The odds of actually collecting exactly to the gram the amount required is very unlikely. AFS .provided I pass the Lab. 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. Especially in a Jobber Foundry where various alloys are cast using the same sand if it suits the purpose. alloys. 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. sand types and binders precludes a definitive chart that can be referred to for selection. 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.. clearly passing through without overflowing the container. Quality Control practices should begin at the shipping dock when new unbonded sand arrives at the foundry.. 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). (details to follow .Heating Units to burn out residual binders . . Sands that are classed as angular impart specific properties to the mold and casting.. though there are general guidelines but the variability of processes.. 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. Sand Coolers All of the above should not aggravate the accumulation of "Fines" by excessively rough handling of sands.

but more anal supervisors may demand greater precision. Rinse and repeat. The above being said.5g (Split) 118.. but have no interest in writing out a long précis on the theory of successive approximation. . For your own piece of mind each bin can be weighed to ensure that the separator does indeed separate in equal parts. 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. All the "Hold" bins are dumped together and weighed (check that the weight is as calculated) If there is a gross margin of error .56g (Hold) 14.25 (Discard) 59. 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. This is grounds for dismissal. Target sample weight 100g Split 1 Split 2 Split 3 Split 4 Split 5 Split 6 Split 7 Bin1 236. measurement to within 0..69g (Hold) Bin2 236.5g (Discard) 118.25g (Split) 59..69g (Discard) The 4 (four) Hold bins should total 99.The illustration to the right is a rather lame and grossly inaccurate representation of a simple sand separator.12g (Split) 29.78g (Discard) 7.12g (Hold) 29. The separator though simplistic is essential in retaining the grain distribution.. The initial qty of sand is divided over and over again.76g. and assumed perfect division of the Split weights. and weighed until by Successive approximation the target weight is arrived at.24g is good enough for me & my staff. I know that I can repeat the thought process to determine the split/hold and discard points. ie..78g (Split) 7.Lather..12g was hit.56g (Split) 14. Initial weight 473 Grams.39g (Split) 3.39g (Hold) 3.... A series of evenly spaced slots alternatively direct the sand into Bins 1 and 2 respectively. consider this your written warning!!! The Diagram to the right illustrates a typical range of Sieve Mesh sizes used in an AFS-gfn test..

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

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

due to the variance in grain surface area. The last point is that Grain shape has a natural tendency to change from Angular to Rounded.The 2 (two) extremes of sand shape would be Lo-Spherical/Very Angular grain compared to a HiSpherical/Well Rounded Grain. The points or material that is broken off an angular grain remains in the sand and is termed "Fines". Green Sand & Clay(s) .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..000" in diameter. Surface tension and inter particle Friction. 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. due to handling and usage over time.An aluminum oxide compound Al2O3 is a family of compounds found naturally in clays such as bauxite or kaolin Silicate . A typical individual Alumina Silicate platelet or flake ranges between 1/5000 to 1/50. in english Clay will dry-out. Electrostatic Bonding. this near 2 dimensionality of alumina silicate when hydrated imparts the characteristic slippery plasticity of clay.Containing water.I was unsure what that meant so with Google "Define: xxxxx" Hydrous . typically chemically bound water or water of hydration... The text definition goes on for a full page on micellular di-pole structures. The elemental definition of water H2O bonds to the Alumina Silicate through 3 (three) methods. but wants to retain a certain amount of water. Grain shape also influences mold strength and permeability. Grain shape has a considerable influence on binder adhesion and qty. if separated into individual platelets would cover an area of approx 800 sq meters. Clay and Clay Minerals All clays essentially can be considered Hydrous Alumina Silicates .. Alumina . The electrostatic bonding mechanism can be defined as dipolar forces initiated by the preferential absorption of Positive and Negative Ions within the Hydrous solution. 1 gram of Bentonite. the Hydrous component is what gives clay it's adhesive and slippery properties. The key component is that this solution has an ionic component that has enough strength to retain the hydrous element. the qty of fines also impacts mold permeability.

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

Foundries and Foundry supply houses commonly blend the Bentonite clays to achieve an averaging of their beneficial properties. Similarly Kaolinite requires 1/3 more water to be hydrated as the Bentinites. 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. lends itself well to high production foundries that employ mechanized molding due to it's High Green strength.2 (PSI) Dry Compression (PSI) 101 Hot Compression @ (PSI) 1000F 110 1500F 210 1850F 520 2000F 345 2500F 8 Calcium Bentonite 5 2. and superior Hot Strength characteristics than Southern Bentonite. The hydration of Southern the most popular clay for green sand molding due to it's compatibility with a broad range of alloys.5 Green Compression 11. requires less mulling to completely coat sand grains. while too little moisture effects mold surface stability. Sou.Western Bentonite .5 12. With careful control of moisture content most foundries can use 100% Western Bentonite and avoid blending clays. as the clay is destroyed above 700C.0 10.4 69 Kaolinite 12 3.Has poor Hot & Dry strength properties that exclude it from use in steel or Cast Iron Casting. 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). Southern Bentonite . Ben.5 55 103 150 72 4 75 145 170 510 27 . Although it has 90% of the Green Strength of Southern Bentonite it has significantly more Green Strength than the Fire-Clays. and Kaolinite is also blended with either or both clays to improve the refractoriness of the binder. hot & dry strength.2 71. offering greater Green Strength. Fireclay (Kaolinite) . and contributes to erosion defects and mold cracks. Property Sodium Bentinite % Clay to Sand 5 % moisture 2. Western Bentonite requires additional Mulling (over S-Ben) due to it's expansion properties when hydrated.Although Kaolinite clay has the highest refractoriness of the clay families it has substantially lower green. and 2 to 3 times as much clay is needed to achieve similar coverage.

higher moisture requirements or brittle molds affecting green strength. the percentage of "Dead" or clay that can no longer be re-activated must be determined to ensure consistency of castings. Permeability is used to aid in determining proper AFS -Grain distribution. Green Strength..Offers an excellent indicator of either Over or Under Tempering of Green Sand. quantity of Clay and moisture.. Temperature . Many of the other properties of green sand are dependant on accurate maintenance of proper moisture levels. Permeability . clay selection. and establishes a benchmark that allows foundries to compare a standard. Total Fines . or other green sand additives can adversely effect casting quality by reduction of permeability. sand fractures. The accepted rule is that sand must be under 120F to re-activate clay binders. as the clay is activated with water and it's plasticity is a function of it's level of hydration. this relates to high production environments. when combined with Moisture testing. and too low results in gas related defects. mulled and into mold again at a high rate. This modules has 4 (four) Lab Assignments that relate to these tests. Green sand mulled above 120F is simply mixed together.Testing is also classed as a Primary test .. and mulling must also occur below that threshold point. Compactability . Flowability and Permeability.The last of the Primary tests is Temperature. size and weight to sand ratio. Since the total clay blend is determined by the alloy being cast. Secondary Tests This series of tests are performed less frequently (daily or weekly depending on volume and test) Active Clay Content . Hot Strength.Grain size distribution was beaten-up and left for dead in the previous module. Green Compression Strength . and the sand grains are not being a measure of the "Openness" of a green sand mixture. and is a determinant in the sand's ability to vent gases.the fines or sub-granular content must be maintained below 2.5 and 4% depending on the castings being produced. .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. Moisture .. Too high a permeability results in surface finish defects.AKA Methelyne Blue Test is used to determine the percentage of active clay remaining in the green sand mix. The accumulation of fines from dead clay. This measure can be affected by Mulling. this test becomes a good indicator of sand consistency.This is the most common test. AFS -gfn . where green sand is cycled from mold thru shake out.

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

. toughness and permeability. on a volumetric scale as well in consideration of mass. Hot Sand Considerations. 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. Such a rapid expansion of a significant qty of free water within a mold can result in an explosion. gas pick-up resulting in porosity defects. tools.. this characteristic influences the strength of the molding sand. fine cracks. 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. in the case of Cast Iron the thermo-chemical interaction is illustrated as 3Fe + 4H2O – Fe3O4 + 4 H2. This can be in the form of superior surface finishes. which brings to light the influence of the alloy type.An important factor in the water clay relationship is "Compactability". Water like most materials. 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. I said it was a nightmare) as well as our house (similarly located a distance from the foundry). 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. and building walls and work benches. The Temper point of the sand is the point of ideal hydration. expands as it rises in temperature Water can expand up to 4. Other considerations such as . resistance to deformation. I picture a shower of liquid metal droplets emanating outward like bullets onto workers. the only reason to modify or change the properties of the foundry sand is to improve the quality of the castings. To be clear. Aluminum as a significantly lower thermal transfer requirement than a ferrous alloy such as Cast Iron. Sand molding and testing should be restricted to temperatures below 100F. this module will address the numerous other materials that can be added and their effect & purpose. as well as hot tears due to too high a hot strength that does not allow the casting to shrink uniformly. The expansive property of excess or free water within a mold is further exasperated by the resultant decrease of the mold's permeability.are found within the following list. It stands to reason that the sand to metal ratio has a significant influence on the moisture losses associated with the casting process. peak Green strength as well as ideal.3% above it's original volume between 5C and 100C. Excess Moisture Defects . The heat of the casting process obviously liberates a qty of water from the mold. in an HDM application the sand has a compactability between 30 to 40%. Surely some clever engineer can use this to create a new energy economy. above 100C (the point of vaporization) water expands rapidly to 1600 times it's liquid volume. deformation (oversized) castings. Water can actually be decomposed at excessive heat when in contact with certain alloys. reducing or removing persistent defects and the scrap rate associated with such defects. essentially forming iron oxide (rust) and hydrogen on contact. Through all of the above the primary objective is to establish consistency in the Green Sand formula. www.nhs.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 www. Variability Theory .cogsci. and its degree of perceived customer acceptance or satisfaction.Define: A measure of the ability of a particular method to converge on the correct answer as the sample size becomes infinite. due to their typically subjective nature (Note .scot.bridgefieldgroup.htm The totality of features and characteristics of a product that bear on its ability to satisfy given %20Practices/content/resource/gloss. www.htm . www.I found that it was worth my while to "google . 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. this area would cover the molding process. I personally feel that there is no optimal or super sand www. Reduction of variability is a priority in systems that attempt to ensure consistent quality and reduce lead times.2asc. upper and lower limits. the molds properties in terms of definitely won't be on the exam.html Define: Quality The characteristics of an item or process that indicate its conformance to designated parameters. Consistency and Quality to get a better sense of their meaning. but are critical only in relation to the value placed on them by the user or and the end product will be an assortment of benefits and compromises.princeton. consistency and the ability to continue performance in stress or volume situations. and quick reusability for high production foundries.html variable control chart.htm A spread of possible outcomes around an expected outcome www. reclamation. Quality characteristics often include reliability. shakeout. and deviation characteristics of a set of observations. but is an exercise that frames a deeper understanding of the overall objective.flowability or handling of the sand are included.

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

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

and if MINOR errors are made. as well as any supplementary additives that may unduly complicate the maintenance process in the course of counter-acting the effects of initial additives. If this occurs. In summary. 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.. Refractoriness and Permeability via grain distribution remains within acceptable ranges. 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. dilution sand is typically added at the rate of 20% to 30% to maintain the sand mix over time. 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.. select the additive(s) carefully with the implications on the entire system as materials decompose due to exposure at the mold metal interface. 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 . The soda ash is added in proportions that restore the pH to the 8 .. All clay-based Green Sand mixture inevitably require some maintenance to ensure that Compactability.. I hope you get the picture that as soon as we start to modify one parameter we effect other parameters and soon. offering better clay hydration and superior coating properties to the sand. 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.9 range.. ad nauseum. In closing. The larger the scale of production typically the easier the additives are to control (assuming adequate mechanization is employed to handle such volumes). 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. Polymer Additives ..I think the name is too generic as everything can be reduced to a chemical composition? no matter. The illustration that comes to mind is the maintenance of an aquarium for fish. only employ additives to impart a characteristic improvement in the sand for the casting at hand.. 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. the larger medium can be somewhat more forgiving. Essentially dilution sand can be added to counter act a variety of additive related issues. we're making additions that are counter acting previous additions.per-ton ranges. it's generally much easier to maintain the properties of a larger (100g) tank than it is for a small (5g) tank.These materials are relatively new additions to the foundry and serve the purpose of lowering the surface tension of the water..

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

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

33% due to it's negative effects. . 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. 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.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.. and creating a condition where condensation potentially could occur. Conversely sand that is below 70F can take significantly longer to set or cure when activated.) Density The core density also holds a relationship to the cured strength properties of core/molds.. Warm-Box. and aquariums for fish keepers etc. ADV . This condition is counteracted by the use of in-line resin or sand heaters to aid to maintaining an adequate temperature. 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 slower the polymerization of the resin.I doubt that it requires mentioning that sand/resin mixtures at 53C will not reverse time.. The pH scale is defined as the logarithm of the reciprocal of the hydrogen ion concentration within an aqueous solution. while Cold-Box and Phenolic Urethane processes require a more basic ADV. "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.. by setting 5 minutes prior to the addition of the catalyst.. the stronger the bond. as the ADV of sands can drift over use.. while sands below 50F are too viscous to be moved effectively and would result in poor activation if at all. Up to a limit.. The Hot-Box. Typically moisture content is kept below 0.. (if you understood that on the first reading you can take my spot in line for the gold star. Acid Catalyst No-Bakes systems require an acidic ADV.. this is illustrated in the lecture notes as. This is the same scale that is used to maintain drinking water..

. Heat Activated Chemical Binder Systems Let me retract. where a rounded shape will require the least binder for effective coverage. and especially for cores is the thermal expansion characteristics of the sand being used.The most common way to influence density is through grain shape of the sand. 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. or based on Carbon compound(s). especially when a binder is used that has poor collapsibility or too high a Hot Strength.. This section and the next 2 sections are more info on binders.. 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.. This section will deal with the Heat Activated class.. Olivine. or Non-Carbon binders are based on Silicate compound(s) or Phosphate/Metal Oxide compound(s).. 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. Cold-Box & No-Bake. . 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. compactability increases between 8 to 10% over an angular grain shape. Chromite and Zircon Sands. the main groupings are Heat Activate... The In-Organic. my statement in the previous section (6 & 7). Silica Sand has the worst characteristics at almost 4 times the rate of expansion than. The In-Organic binders require more attention when molding. The chemical binders are grouped by activation. Expansion Characteristics The final consideration in all binder systems. The dimensional integrity of the core within a closed area of the casting potentially could create stress or hot tears. about the lack of coverage of the "Binder Systems".

Typically most foundries purchase core sand that is pre-coated with resin. 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. resin and typically a chemical wash and mechanical treatment to particulate the sand for usage. The shell process is still in use today. Phenolic & Urea Formaldehyde. In hollow cores the box is tilted to allow un-catalyzed sand to pour out for the next core. as it was developed during the second World War. The mixture is blown or rammed into a core mold.). Shell sand has an indefinite shelf life prior to molding and the mold/cores similarly have an indefinite shelf-life prior to use. The Core sand is dry mixed with cereal additives. both require precision temp control of sand. These process are even more current than the Shell process. Although it is possible to resin coat the sand in-house. and it's adaptability to mold production as well as Core production. the technical nature of the process generally precludes doing so. removed and baked at between 350F & 500F in an oven with adequate air flow to evacuate any moisture release from the core. 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. 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 coating methods described in the text are termed "Hot-Coating" and "Warm-Coating". Beyond the advantages of long storage periods. The core mold is a heated box (typically 500F . and hollow cores aid in the "Shake-Out" properties of the casting. Though their application is somewhat restricted due to the environmental issues that surround the emissions of Formaldehyde in production.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. also known as the Croning process (named for it's developer Johannes Croning) is comparatively more current than the Core Oil process..550F) that the sand is blown or rammed into. Shell Cores provide good surface finish properties due to their flow and density characteristics. having been developed in the early 1960's (much like myself. Shell or Croning Process The Shell process. Hot Box Core Process The dominant process are Furan. 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. Part of the Shell Processes longevity is it's relative ease of use. The hybrid resins are formulated with .

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

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

The Shake-Out characteristics for a Sodium Silicate/CO2 core/mold are unfortunately. @ 32F the compressive strength is approx 20PSI.0% concentrations. The benefits of this system are reduced scrap sand. The temperature of the Sodium Silicate mixture when gassed has a significant impact on compressive strength of the core/mold. ureaformaldehyde. although some additives are available to improve this property for Ferrous metal castings. Of concern with this process is the core/mold tendency to absorb moisture in humid environments. and isocyanate from an environmental view. The reclamation system most commonly used is a "Packed Tower Scrubber" this system uses a water and 5% Sodium Hydroxide . or alternatively a 50/50 mix for Aluminum production is used. with poor hot strength characteristics. Acrylic based resins have excellent green strength and moldability. so has fewer porosity defects. Similarly the sand reclamation process can be hampered by vitrification of the core due to heat. Assuming a 60sec gassing time to activate or catalyze the binder.Primarily the use of CO2 as the catalyzing gas/vapour removes the requirement of a scrubber as the gas in inert. The duration of gassing has an effect on Core/Mold Strengths. Similarly the Sodium Silicate binder has a lower environmental impact and can be considered comparatively inert.. Epoxy Acrylic/Sulfur Dioxide (FRC) This final "Cold-Box" system is also known as the FRC system. has no odour and will NOT be a respiratory irritant.5 parts Soda compounds. better flow properties from the mixer through the hopper and into the core blowing machinery.. The popularity of PUA is largely due to superior strength properties over Sodium Silicate/Carbon Dioxide. these additives can't be used in non-ferrous applications. though I couldn't find the reason in either the lecture notes or text. This system uses a blend of both Acrylic and Epoxy resins to derive the best strength properties of both compounds. while Epoxy based resins provide excellent Hot Strength properties though with longer cure-times and gassing requirements. This system is free of Water and Nitrogen from a gas generation perspective and also Phenol. mechanical reclamation has poor results though some water based systems are available. Also this property implies a relatively short shelf-life of core/molds.5% to 2. @ 60F it is close to 50PSI and at 100F is just under 200PSI compressive strength. The Sodium Silicate/Carbon Dioxide system was introduced in the 1950's and pre-dates Phenolic Urethane/Amine. One of the pluses of a Sodium Silicate/CO2 system is that it generates very little gases when compared to Organic systems. A blend of 35 parts Epoxy to 65 parts Acrylic (with peroxide for Ferrous applications) seems ideal. 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. The strength properties of the Core/Mold are closely related to the Sodium Silicate ratio. this adverse property should be attended to with air conditioning and humidity handling systems. Optimal performance has been established with 1 part Silicate to 2. These proportions are mixed to sand in 0. Though the catalyst gas (Sulfer Dioxide) does require additional equipment (Scrubbers) for reclamation. quite poor.

5. how can there be such vague guide-lines for disposal of this type of material. 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. 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. No-Bake Air-Set Binder Systems This the final section for this course as well as the last of the Core/Mold Binder systems. The resultant Sodium Sulphate solution has a pH of 8.. The ideal temperature or mid-point from which to work is between 75F & 85F. 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. The sand/resin mixture may become too viscous below 50F to flow properly. Strip & Cure times should be predictable consistent durations that are specific to the resin type being used. Sand heaters and/or chiller may be needed to achieve consistent results.. The basic premise is that every rise in sand/resin temperature of approx 10C/18F cuts the current phase time in half.. As discussed in a previous module.. and the resin will not be able to properly coat the grains if not pre-coated. I can't see how regional jurisdiction would matter. Work. resulting in gummy resin that also does not coat or flow properly. with a lower limit of approx 50F and an upper limit of approx 110F. 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.. 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.solution. the 10C/18F Rule is applicable. again a process that I will not undertake for the sake of profit.. The first phase is "WorkTime" this is the period that all mixing transport. molding and compaction will occur within. Similarly any surplus moisture or un-catalyzed solvents may contribute to excessive gassing and porosity defects in the casting. 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. As an aside. In an effort to accommodate the temperature requirements of the binder system that a foundry is using.. the ambient temperature of the sand and room as well as humidity. .... Local laws and environmental regulation will dictate whether this can be discharged or requires specific disposal considerations. Temperatures above 110F tend to evaporate the solvents within the resin(s). the qty & type of catalyst added. either this effluent is benign or hazardous. As a last resort the core/mold may be baked in an oven to ensure all moisture and solvents have been evaporated. 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.

These are generically identified as Low. to clarify this see below. (See also Furan. This system is categorized as the Furan Family but contains no furan. www.html The capability of being mixed. www. is an aromatic heterocyclic organic compound. The Furfuryl alcohol is said to be miscible with water. Commonly.sludgehappens. 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.html Miscible means able to be mixed. also known as furane and furfuran..cogsci. Two liquids are said to be miscible if they are partially or completely soluble in each other. It is toxic and may be carcinogenic.html a colorless toxic flammable liquid used in the synthesis of nylon eg. 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 very volatile and highly flammable liquid with a boiling point close to room temperature. but rather is composed of either Urea Formaldehyde (UF) or Phenol Formaldehyde (PF) as well as a Furfuryl alcohol. www. Medium & High Nitrogen the term miscible is understood to mean that the two liquids are completely soluble in each other.htm Capable of being mixed together. . www. google define: Furan • • • Resin formed from reactions involving furfuryl alcohol alone or in combination with other constituents.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. Furan is a clear.hghouston. colorless. mutually soluble. water and ethyl alcohol are miscible.) google define: Miscible • • • • Capable of being mixed in any concentration without separation of phases.htm The system is considered as Organic.

Olivine sand does have a high ADV and would be considered unsuitable. and is generally from either the Phosphoric or Sulfonic families. the Furan Family of binders are among the most widely used systems for the class of NoBake/Air-set. beyond which core/mold quality is effected by dried weak surfaces that are prone to being friable when cast. On the negative side SO2 (Sulfur Dioxide) is produced during the casting process.24% Core 98. The tensile strength of the core/mold is also negatively impacted by higher levels of moisture. The Nitrogen (and by association moisture) content can be modified by the use of "Low-N" Furfuryl alcohol.. it's possible to theorize a relationship between the moisture content created during the polymerization phase and rate of cure.96% 0. They offer flexible work.70% 1. Chromite and Zircon sands would be acceptable.. The sand that is used can adversely affect the curing process if it has a high ADV (Acid Demand Value). The release of residual formaldehyde during the sand reclamation process also poses health and environmental concerns. as well as the toxicity of the resin & catalyst components involved. What is stated is that higher moisture contents do generally lead to slower cure-times. . I think it is self evident. The catalyst material is an acid. strip and cure times. Sand Resin Catalyst Typical Material proportions Mold 98. good Hot-Strength & Erosion Resistance and relative ease of sand reclamation. it is problematic with ferrous (especially steel) castings. The catalyst reaction is exothermic or one that generates heat. although not stated.30 These percentages are representative of the percentile of the polymerized resin.30% Note that molds generally have less resin & catalyst than cores. while Silica. The third issue is the relationship between Nitrogen (N) and moisture. Though the effect of nitrogen is less pronounced with Non-Ferrous castings.11 Water % 0-5 5 . although neither text or lecture notes explicitly say this. with the Sulfonic acids yielding faster cure times. effectively neutralizing the catalyst before the curing process is complete. The rate of cure can be accelerated up to a point. and do not include the volume of sand/aggregate.00% 0.15 10 . The acidic nature of the catalyst is what activates and precipitates polymerization.80% 0. In closing.Low Medium High Furan/Acid Binder Classification Nitrogen % 0-3 2-8 5 .

shtml Compound formed by the elimination of water and bonding of an alcohol and an organic acid. 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. The range of ratio's for foundry usage in Core/Mold production is from 56.htm A molecule containing an ester linkage. The catalyzing Ester is added at a rate of 10 to 12% of the resin used to achieve consistent core/mold 12.4% 54. a carbonyl group bonded to an O that is in turn bonded to a C.2% 31. www.0 2.7% 30.0 up to 3.9% 56. the -COOH group of the acid and the -OH group of the alcohol lose a water and become a -COO. In esters of carboxylic acids.eere.2% 30.85 google define: ester • • • • An ester is a compound formed from the reaction between an acid and an alcohol. 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.4 2.linkage.learnchem. The Table below better illustrates the weight ratios for the range of Silicate/Ester binder resins. Low Medium High Silicate/Ester Resin Composition Na2O SiO2 H2O 15.I think that the shift to "Off-Shore" high volume casting may have motivators beyond "CheapLabour".foresight. The various binder compositions are achieved by varying the ratio of Silica (SiO2) to Soda (Na2O) when mixing the resin with water. .gov/biomass/student_glossary. It should also be noted that In-Organic molecular bonds are generally weaker than Organic bonds. www.html Above is a quick reference to better define an Ester. 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. Ratio 2.html an organic compound produced by the reaction between a carboxylic acid and an alcohol Wt.

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

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. I picked this up at a flea . Notice the el' Cheapo drill press. This course (MTB72) is a necessary evil. I just wanted to try it out on something quick & dirty. I doubt the the larger bead type foam would be of much use. Closing comments. 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. Secondly. 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. Unfortunately I can't compare Lost Foam to Cavity Molding or Green Sand Casting as I've never used green sand.. The tight cell structure is a key feature. I buy mine in 2 ft by 8 ft by 2 inch sheets. The results I had were so much better than what I expected that I've just continued on with it.. 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.The presence of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) in the solvents can't be a good thing. The foam that I use is construction insulation. This is great stuff to work with. I had read about Lost Foam. In this case I'm cutting out an octagon shape that will be turned down to be a face plate for my lathe. 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. I first started using foam for molding fiberglass. it does tend to distort the form as it cuts and requires quite a bit of hand finishing to clean-up plugs. When I first built my Blast Furnace. During that experience I made a small hot wire foam cutter. Even though the cutter is fun to use. as it cuts easily and can be shaped with common hand tools. typical Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) and government regulatory bodies that oversee the Foundry industry would have been helpful. Also a module on current regulations.. and thought it would be a quick way to get started..25" over-size. Generally I guesstimate the rough dimensions of a part and cut a chunk of foam with a hand saw at least 0.

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

it's easy to use a steel rule as a guide without damaging the bit. Since it requires so little force to cut through the foam. but I have enough to pour off 3 castings at a time with this set-up. but pulleys are just as easy to make with the groove cut and finished. This problem is more pronounced with flat square pieces. Unfortunately it was on a beach in northern Quebec during a . Here my assistant carefully sifts the sand through screen stapled to a shallow box. I wanted 4 slots cut squarely on the face. By using a wisk any debris is easily swept off the screen onto the floor. I will have to get more sand.The last stage is to get a smooth finish without removing any more material than necessary. and old pot are what I use for pouring my castings into. 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. The tub on wheels is full of used sand that I have yet to sift. the Steel bucket. I like to start with a 200 grit sand paper to remove any little flakes and finish with a flat metal file. wooden box. the screened sand is poured off into a container. Here I'm using my trusty (knock-off) dremel tool with a quarter inch routing bit. The factory glaze or finish should be broken while on the press with the sand paper as well. The factory finish tends to cause a warp or curl on pieces once the opposite side is cut. I recently picked up 20lbs of the finest sand I've ever seen. These pictures are of a square shouldered faceplate.

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

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

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