Optimizing Your Foundry Operation Via Optimized Risering Practice

Exothermic and insulating feeding systems (or feeders) are common practice in our industry. With the development of modern high production molding equipment, we have accepted the challenges in developing feeding aids for these new systems.

Innovative rigging systems have also helped foundries improve productivity by increasing the number of castings per mold. Although this is a positive economic change, it limits positioning, sizing and feeder contact area on the pattern plate, making it challenging for the foundry engineer to produce shrink-free castings. Advancements in manufactured feeding aids are trying to meet the challenges foundries face by balancing improved processes, productivity demands and costs while maintaining high quality castings.

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Cutting-edge Feeding Technology for Advanced Casting Processes

The use of exothermic and insulative feeding systems - sleeves and pouring cups - have been common practice for many years. Increasingly over the last three decades, foundries have improved productivity by increasing the number of castings per mold. This economical change has resulted in more restrictive positioning of the feeding sytems on the pattern plate.

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Evaluating Phenolic Urethane Cold Box Environmental Advantages

The Phenolic Urethane Cold Box process (PUCB) is the most widely used, organic chemical process for coremaking in North America. Its reputation for being versatile, highly productive, and cost efficient are the reasons it remains popular today, especially for metalcasting in the automotive, mining, and agricultural supply chains.

The appreciation for PUCB systems primarily comes from these benefits: faster cycle times; applicability for ferrous and nonferrous casting; excellent performance for highly complex cores; high mechanical strength; and effective thermal characteristics.

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Feeder Technology Powered by CHEMEX

Finally, a feeding material that provides a shrinkage-free casting and increases casting productivity - even on the most complex designs.

Chemex Tele-feeder Systems are especially ideal for complex castings including intricate designs and rapid molding processes. This technology uniquely allows feeder placement in previously inaccessible locations.

Significant Benefits:

  • Increases productivity with higher yield and faster cleaning time
  • Increases quality with reduced casting scrap and rework
  • Reduces environmental footprint with reduced energy
  • Decreases scrap - low fluorine content results in reduction of fluorine content in molding sand, which leads to a decrease of scrap
  • Expands the locations for feeder placement
  • Reduces surface defects with fluorine-free material

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5 Keys to Reducing Casting Defects Through Refractory Coatings

In an industry that has been around for many centuries with a wealth of knowledge and experience, we still today find ourselves when analyzing casting defects asking, "what changed?" This is because we understand that our industry is process dependent and controlling those processes is key to success. Refractory coatings are one of the products that we utilize to produce quality castings. Although usage is small in comparison, these products are applied at the mold/metal interface which is critical when it comes to defects. Crushes, inclusions, scabs, expansion, gas, metal penetration, misruns and rough surface defects can all be affected by refractory coating practices. Therefore, how do we control this aspect of our foundry operations?

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Phenolic Urethane Cold Box Process

If you have dealt with core / mold making in the metal casting process, then most likely at some point you have dealt with the Phenolic Urethane Cold Box process (PUCB). PUCB is the most popular binder system for coremaking and the most widely organic chemical process in North America. The main key drivers that have propelled the PUCB is its versatility, productivity, and cost of use. Industries such as the automotive, mining, and agricultural depend on PUCB for their core making process.

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Reducing Shrinkage in Aluminum Castings With Resin Selection

As casting geometries become thinner in design and more complex, the influences from resin selection will place a more crucial role in providing a solid casting. An aluminum foundry was experiencing issues with a dendritic type shrinkage defect that was related to a recent change in a resin package, resulting in higher scrap rates from the shrink defect.

The only variable that changed and created the dendritic type shrink defect in this case was the resin. HA-International designed an experiment to determine how PUCB resin percentages, and solvent packages used in urethane cold boxes affected the influence of shrink on this particular aluminum A316 casting during solidification.

Evaluation occurred on a newly developmental phenolic urethane cold box and a modified version of this new system, utilizing the latest solvent packages found in HAI's SigmaCure series of phenolic urethane cold box (PUCB). The experimental setup of the study included computer aided modeling, analytical testing, and actual casting tests to generate cooling curves. These results, in conjunction with the temperature dependent properties were used to create simulation model datasets for the cold box sand mix in order to simulate the actual sand mold physical properties and understand how it was creating the shrinkage defects. Between 1,500-2,000 design iterations were conducted in modeling software to obtain a dataset that matched the results from actual lab casting results. The specific heat capacity and density results required for the simulation datasets were measured directly using instrumentation on test molds.

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Optimized Feeding Systems

It is well known that metals change volume during solidification. This volume change must be compensated during solidification otherwise shrinkage defects can occur in a casting, making it unusable for its stated purpose.

This has been solved through the use of adding a metal reservoir commonly known as a "feeder" the purpose of which is to supply liquid metal to the casting as it cools and solidifies.

As this technology has developed and been improved, newer types of feeder materials have become available, including combinations of exothermic-insulating and highly exothermic compositions. The choice of material depends upon the application.

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An Interesting Approach to the Product Installation Process

I always have believed that to successfully implement a new resin system in an existing or new customer, it is necessary to take into consideration four important factors: Materials, Methods, Manpower, and EH&S. The first three represent a three-sided equilateral triangle, which in turn is being supported by safe practices and products. If any of the sides of the triangle are unbalanced, the chances of carrying out a successful implementation could be compromised. Any substantial deficiency of any of the 3 M's (Materials, Methods, Manpower), will require that the other two be challenged at a higher degree.

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Environmental stewardship: NOT JUST A TREND

The metalcasting industry has a great reputation when it comes to recycling. However, environmental stewardship involves more than recycling. Using materials with more advanced environmental benefits is where metalcasters can take a leading role to mitigate some of the environmental challenges they face while creating a healthier and safer work environment.

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Evolution of Foundry Shell Sand for Today's Foundry

Simple Solutions That Work - (Issue 9, September 2018)

The Shell Sand process or "Croning" process was invented by Dr. Johannes Croning in Hamburg, Germany in 1944. This process is the oldest core and mold making technology that utilizes synthetic resins. Although many additional sand core and molding making technologies have since been introduced, the Shell Sand process is still a very effective core and molding process today.

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