Investment Casting Tooling
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Design from print or reverse engineer from sample
What we do
Ensure quality castings for foundries and advanced manufacturers of investment castings
Advanced manufacturers worldwide trust Forte Tooling Technologies for their investment casting tooling solutions.
Forte Tooling Technologies also has expertise in tooling solutions for aluminum, brass, iron, steel, and stainless steel castings. We’re experts in prototype and production tooling for steel and stainless steel investment casting processes.
While your different castings require different steel alloys, all your projects require quality and efficiency. Forte Tooling Technologies’ innovative tooling solutions ensure quality castings for foundries and advanced manufacturers of investment castings with complex geometry and high-performance demands.
INVESTMENT CASTING ALLOYS
- Stainless Steel
INVESTMENT CASTING TOOLING SPECIALTIES
- Aluminum Wax Patterns
- Steel Wax Patterns
How it’s done
Investment Casting Process
- Pattern Creation:
The process begins with the creation of a pattern, which is an exact replica of the desired metal part. This pattern can be made from wax, plastic, or other materials. Skilled artisans or advanced machinery are used to sculpt or mold the pattern, ensuring it matches the intended design accurately.
- Assembly and Gating:
Multiple patterns are typically attached to a wax sprue, forming a cluster. This cluster allows for efficient casting of multiple parts simultaneously. Gating systems, including sprues, runners, and vents, are added to facilitate the flow of molten metal and the escape of gases during the casting process.
- Investment Molding:
The pattern cluster is then immersed in a slurry of ceramic or refractory material, called the investment. This investment is designed to withstand high temperatures and provide a mold cavity for the metal. Afterward, the coated cluster is covered with a fine grain sand or stucco, creating a shell around the pattern.
Once the investment coating has dried, the entire assembly is subjected to high temperatures in a furnace. This causes the wax or plastic pattern to melt and drain out, leaving behind a cavity precisely shaped like the desired part within the investment shell. This step is known as burnout.
After burnout, the investment mold is preheated to eliminate any remaining moisture and further strengthen the ceramic shell. The temperature is gradually increased to prepare the mold for receiving molten metal.
The preheated mold is placed into a casting machine or furnace. Molten metal, typically steel, aluminum, bronze, or other alloys, is poured into the mold cavity through the sprue. The metal fills the void created by the pattern, taking its shape.
- Solidification and Cooling:
Solidification and Cooling: Once the mold is filled, the molten metal is allowed to cool and solidify within the mold. The cooling time is carefully controlled to ensure the metal solidifies uniformly, minimizing defects such as shrinkage or porosity.
- Shell Removal:
After the metal has solidified and cooled, the investment shell is removed. This is usually done by mechanical means, such as vibrations, sandblasting, or chemical etching. The gating system is also removed, and the individual parts are separated from the sprue.
The cast parts may undergo various finishing processes, including grinding, machining, polishing, or heat treatment. These steps are performed to achieve the desired surface finish, dimensional accuracy, and mechanical properties.
- Inspection and Quality Control:
The final components are thoroughly inspected to ensure they meet the required specifications. This may involve visual inspection, dimensional measurements, non-destructive testing, or other quality control methods.
The investment casting process offers several advantages, including the ability to produce intricate shapes, tight tolerances, excellent surface finishes, and a wide range of material options. It is commonly used in industries such as aerospace, automotive, medical, and jewelry, where intricate and high-quality components are required.