From receipt of customer specifications, our Foundry Methods engineers convert 2D drawings into 3D computer models, adding machining allowances, drafts, runners, risers and shape modifications to improve the castability of the item. From here our Casting Simulation software takes over, creating computer simulations of the casting process to eliminate costly physical trial runs and refine the casting technique.
Simultaneously, our team of metallurgists are at work, refining ‘recipes’ for a huge range of standard and customised metals, and coordinating with the Methods Engineers to ensure the utmost integrity in each casting. Our laboratory is staffed by fully-qualified metallurgists, who work to ensure consistent conformance of materials and processes in our Foundry. Using an Optical Emission Spectrometer, Brinel and Rockwell hardness testers and a metallurgical microscope, we offer complete traceability of the chemical and mechanical properties of every batch of metal we cast.
Our metallurgists also custom design special metals for specific applications using our huge range of reference materials, specifications, standards and SPC databases. Once completed, the finished method is passed to our Pattern Shop, where skilled tradesmen build patterns from wood, plastic or styrene foam. Although CNC routers are now used on some patterns, the majority of our pattern work is still completed by artisan tradesmen.
The completed patterns are sent to the moulding floor, where tradesman moulders create hard patterns from resin-filled sand in preparation for casting. Here the real action starts – scrap metal is melted in our electric arc or induction furnaces until molten, usually at around 1500°C. Final checks are made to verify the chemistry of the mix and the pouring temperature. The molten metal is poured into moulds, then allowed to cool. Fettlers remove runners, risers and flash, then shot-blast the item to reveal the semi-finished (black) casting. Castings then undergo customised heat treatment procedures to remove inherent stresses, subjected to Non-Destructive Testing where required, then sent either to our Despatch department or to our Machine Shop for further processing.
|Whiting Arc Furnace||3,300kg|
|Pillar Induction Furnace||2,000kg|
|Inductotherm Induction Furnace||400kg|
|Inductotherm Induction Furnace||300kg|
|Speciality Stainless Steels||2,500kg|