Die casting is a casting method in which a molten alloy liquid is poured into a pressure chamber, where a cavity of a steel mold is filled at a high speed, and the alloy liquid is solidified under pressure to form a casting. The main features of die casting that distinguish it from other casting methods are high pressure and high speed.
The production of die casting products needs to be completed by using die-casting equipment. The technical level of die-casting equipment determines the quality and level of products.
In this article, we will talk about the cost of each procedure of the die casting manufacturing process, in order to save your working time, reduce production costs and improve efficiency.
You should focus on the 3 key factors that influence the cost of die casting manufacturing process as follows and we will give you some tips to save these costs:
The material cost depends on the weight of material required and the unit price of the material. The weight of the material is clearly the result of part volume and material density; but, the maximum wall thickness of parts can also work.
The weight of the material that is required includes material that fills the channel of the die. Thinner walls parts require a larger channel system to ensure that the entire part fills quickly and evenly, thus increasing the amount of material required.
However, such additional materials are typically less than materials saved from partial volume reduction due to the thinner walls. Therefore, despite the larger channels, the use of thinner walls will lower the material cost.
The production cost is mainly calculated on the hourly rate and cycle time. The hourly rate is proportional to the size of the die casting machine, so it is important to understand how the design of the part affects the machine selection. Die casting machines are usually referred to by the tonnage of the clamping force they provide.
Therefore, larger components will require a larger clamping force and require a more expensive machine. Moreover, certain materials that require high injection pressures may require higher tonnage machines. The size of the part must also conform to other machine specifications.
In addition to the size of the machine, the type of machine (hot chamber and cold chamber) also affects the cost. The use of materials with high melting temperatures, such as aluminum, would require a more expensive cold chamber machine.
The cycle time can be broken down into injection time, cooling time and resetting time. By reducing these times, production cost will be reduced. The injection time can be decreased by reducing the maximum wall thickness of the part.
The use of a hot chamber machine can save a lot of time because in a cold chamber machine process, molten metal must be ladled into the machine, significantly increasing producing time. The thermodynamic properties of the material also affect the cooling time.
In the die casting industry, optimization of mold design and reuse of existing molds is one of the most effective and practical ways to reduce the cost of die casting.
3.1 Mold flow analysis reduces costs
In the past, mold design and producing relied on the experience of engineers. The mold development and design method required repeated trials, and then the mold was continually modified according to the results of the test. Each trial increased the cost and increased the product development cycle.
With the development of CAD/CAE technology, through simulation analysis, engineers can see the true flow and solidification of the molten metal inside the mold during die casting, and find the location of defects in advance, thereby optimizing mold design and process and reducing costs.
3.2 Use core to reduce mold costs
Many products are designed with similarities and can be used on other models with partial modifications. For this kind of product, we can consider making different parts into a core, and a pair of molds to make a variety of products. For example, our common natural gas meters have many different types of natural gas joints at both ends, and one type of joint is a product.
We can make the joints into different cores, and several products share a set of molds, which can reduce the cost of several pairs of molds. If the core adopts a quick-change structure, it is possible to directly produce another product in a shorter period of time without producing another mold.
3.3 Reuse old molds to reduce mold costs
After many molds reach the end of their service life, a replica mold process is necessary, which will increase the cost of a set of molds. For the old mold with good mold frame, we can reuse it. We only need to re-do a set of cores and use the new mold core with the old mold frame, so that the cost of a set of mold frames can be saved.
That’s all you need to know about the price issue of die casting. We hope it’d be helpful! Feel free to contact us if you have any questions!
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