Die Casting is a widely used process with flaws like a flash, but at the same time, it is one of the best methods for casting metal parts. Here is everything you need to know about die-cast tooling, die-cast painting, and an example of die-casting toy molding.
EVERYTHING ABOUT DIE CASTING – FLASH, TOOLING, DIE-CAST METAL PAINT
FLASH IN DIE CASTING
When we reach the final casted product, there is a by-product called flash. Flash is an excessive layer of metal that accidentally comes out of the mold. The metal inside the mold is in molten form, and as you know, liquid has the property of fluidity. So, the molten metal flows out of the mold and forms a flash. There are many causes behind the flash formation, depending on the type of metal, machinery used, etc. But it is known as waste material only.
However, a lot of time, flash can be used again in the molds after melting. Out of many causes of flash formation, some are damaged in die faces, excessive pressure, pressure spikes, improper timing in mechanism, machinery defaults, etc. Die cast manufacturers like Zetwerk have been able to make products with the slightest flash with reusable waste material without compromising the quality of the end result.
DIE CAST TOOLING
Die casting tooling is made up of metal tools. Metal alloys are used in die cast tooling because they are durable, malleable, and long-lasting throughout the process. In tooling, there are two parts, fixed half and moving half. The fixed half is called the cover half, and the moving half is the ejector die half. Its motive is to remove extra molten metal while casting. The dies also consist of moveable slides to form complex design structures, including wires and holes in the casting.
Die casting tooling is mainly of two types, and they are-
1. MULTI-SLIDE DIE CAST TOOLING
It is a more recent type of die casting tooling. Multi-slide tooling permits the formation of more complex casts. Four perpendicular slides are used in the tools. Multi-slide die casting tooling access accurate results with minimum after tooling arrangements of parts of the design. However, it is comparatively costly and not ideal for production in bulk.
2. DOUBLE-SLIDE DIE CAST TOOLING
This is popular by the name of conventional die casting tooling. In this type of tooling, two slides are used. It is pocket friendly and ideal for bulk production. Double-slide die casting tooling requires comparatively more after casting assembly of designs. This type is mainly used when you are beginning the journey of die-casting, and Zetwerk helps with casting in the best possible way.
DIE CAST METAL PAINT
Die cast metals are painted to create a classy, colorful, and finished look. However, when we get the final product after casting, it seems greyish and raw. to sell the design in the market at a reasonable price, designers paint die-cast metal as it also makes the end product durable. Usually, spray paint cans or airbrushes are used to paint the casted metals.
Here are some of the commonly used die-cast metal paints:
In terms of glossiness, enamel comes in between lacquer and Acrylic paints. It is durable for complex painting designs also. It is thick and takes time to dry. Primer isn’t a necessity when enamel paint is used.
It is quick in terms of time used for drying up. Therefore, when dealing with lacquer painting, mistakes can be corrected quickly. Its only flaw is that it melts plastic if it is present in the cast.
It does not stick to a smooth surface quickly. That’s why it becomes tough to be painted. But, like enamel, it is feasible to paint complicated designs. This is because acrylic paint also dries quickly.
From automotive to industrial equipment, die-cast metal paints need to be done carefully to maintain the aesthetic as well as the metal characteristic in the long run. Let’s understand die-cast moldings.
DIE CAST TOY MOLDING
Depending on the type of toy, the molding process differs in die casting. The main difference is the structure of the toy that needs casting. For example, in hollow toys, we repeat one step twice. Whereas in toys that do not have cavities, filling the material is performed only once.
To study the process of Die cast toy molding in detail, let’s explore the process step by step via example.
STEP 1: MAKE A BOX FOR THE DIE
Take a sheet and make four perpendicular slides of a rectangular box out of it. Here, you need to use multi-slide die casting tooling in the process. The height and width of the rectangular box should be created in a manner that it is at least one meter larger in width as well as height from the mold. This is done to avoid any space-related adjustments in the Die. Now, properly adjust those slides and use a hot glue gun to join all the remaining corner spaces. Finally, put the toy inside the box to make the required mold design.
STEP 3: DEMOLD THE TOY DIE
Remove the sample toy from the mold material once it is dried. Now, remove the box created by us in step 1. By the blade, smoothly cut the mold we made via step 2. Cut it in such a manner that it forms two equal parts from the opening. Now bind both parts tightly. Next, prepare your mold for casting by attaching the two pieces with tape and wooden slides. Make sure it does not deform.
STEP 2: POUR THE MOLD MATERIAL
Here generally, non-ferrous materials are used in creating the molds. Zinc and aluminum are among the most used ones. For this, using OOMOO™ 30 is a good option when you aren’t creating in bulk. It is affordable and easy to use. Now mix the mold material well, pour it into two cups, stir and mix it well, and then simultaneously put the mold material from both the cups into the rectangular box created in step 1. The consistency of the mold should be equal throughout and avoid bubble formation in the box. Put the sample toy in the rectangular box before pouring the mold material.
STEP 4: POUR AND REMOVE THE CASTING.
From the opening, pour the casting material into the Die. Give it time to dry. Toys, resin, and other types of plastics are usually used. Now without tearing the Die, remove the final product. Currently, your required toy is reading to use. Remember to remove the flash if present. Die-cast paint it if needed.