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Ceramic Mold Casting
The manufacturing process of ceramic mold casting is like the process of plaster mold casting but can cast materials at much higher temperatures. Instead of using plaster to create the mold for the metal casting, ceramic casting uses refractory ceramics for a mold material. In industry, parts such as machining cutters, dies for metalworking, metal molds, and impellers may be manufactured by this process.
The ProcessThe first step in manufacture by ceramic mold casting is to combine the material for the mold. A mixture of fine grain zircon (ZrSiO4), aluminum oxide, fused silica, bonding agents, and water, creates a ceramic slurry . This slurry is poured over the casting pattern and let set. The pattern is then removed and the mold is left to dry. The mold is then fired.
The firing will burn off any unwanted material and make the mold hardened and rigid. The mold may also need to be baked in a furnace as well. The firing of the mold produces a network of microscopic cracks in the mold material. These cracks give the ceramic mold both good permeability and collapsibility for the metal casting process.
Once prepared, the two halves of the mold are assembled for the pouring of the metal casting. The two halves,(cope and drag section), may be backed up with fireclay material for additional mold strength. Often in manufacturing industry, the ceramic mold will be preheated prior to pouring the molten metal. The metal casting is poured, and let solidify. In ceramic mold casting, like in other expendable mold processes, the ceramic mold is destroyed in the removal of the metal casting.
Properties And Considerations Of Manufacturing By Ceramic Mold Casting