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Cast iron is a ferrous alloy of iron, carbon, and silicon. With carbon content of 2.1 to 4.5 % and silicon at about 2.2% and a small amount of Sulphur, Manganese and Phosphorous.
Iron casting is one of the oldest casting methods in the world. The cast iron is melted and poured into molds or casts to make a part of products of desired size and shape. Cast iron can be used in a range of industries. In the Manufacturing Process of Cast Iron, the alloying elements determine cast iron type. Compared with steel casting, iron casting has a wide range of advantages of its properties.
Good machinability (graphite cast irons)
Excellent anti-vibration (or damping) properties hence it is used to make machine frames
Strong compression strength compared to steel
Excellent resistance to wear
Very low notch sensitivity
Constant Mechanical properties between 20 to 350 degrees Celsius
Durability, Resistance to deformation
Good casting properties(low Tm, good fluidity). It can be given any complex shape and size without using costly machining operations
Like other investment castings, there are also different producing methods of iron castings. There are 2 main methods for iron casting: sand casting or lost foam casting method.
Lost foam casting is another casting technique for iron castings. It is a type of evaporative-pattern casting process that is like investment casting. But replace the wax with foam for the pattern. The advantage of lost foam casting is that the boiling point of foam is low. This helps to simplify the investment casting process by removing the need to melt the wax out of the mold. Cast iron is one of the commonly cast materials in the lost foam casting process.
With lost foam casting, we can make small iron castings with good dimensional accuracy and surface finish. For large iron castings, sand casting is the primary choice.
Also called sand molded casting. Is the process that utilizes non-reusable sand molds to form metal castings. Sand casting is used to produce a wide variety of cast iron components with complex geometries. In China, there are three types of sand casting techniques to make iron castings. They are precoated sand casting, resin sand casting, and clay sand casting.
Among them, precoated sand casting is the most precision sand casting process with general casting tolerance CT8. It can produce iron castings less than 2kgs. Clay sand casting is the second precision casting process with general casting tolerance CT9. Iron castings between 2kgs-60kgs are available in this method. And resin sand casting is mainly used for the production of large iron castings above 60kgs.
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