Investment casting, otherwise known as a lost wax casting, is one of the oldest metal-forming processes that is still used as of this date. Approximately 5,000 years ago, investment castings started with a basic beeswax-formed pattern. Today, it involves highly complicated processes and technologies using refractory materials and specialized alloys.
The History of Investment Castings
The use of investment castings in ancient civilization was a bit different from the current method applied today. In the olden times, the craftsman designed the casting from beeswax by using basic tools such as shaving tools, melted wax, and other hot tools. To create the desired form, the craftsman will forge a pattern on the wax shape.
They will then fill the mold with a thin layer of melted wax. As soon as the wax mold is coated in ceramic, a perfect mold of the wax shape can be created. It will then be left to dry out before the craftsman can use it to forge a metal object. Such a process is generally used to create jewelry, decorative objects, and religious objects.
Investment casting is a complex metal-forming development that allows metal workers to create products with intricate and remarkable surfaces. The process starts by creating a mold and producing accurate patterns through the latest technological advancements. The good thing about the modern application of investment castings is that when the workers use wax to make patterns, it can still be reused.
The flexible patterns allow for easy reproduction and stress-free production of wax materials that underwent a series of coating and hardening. Once the materials are invested – jargon for poured – into the mold decorated with unique patterns, it will go through a lot of processes such as dewaxing, heating, pouring, removal, and cleaning.
What Makes Investment Castings a Popular Metal-Forming Process?
If you want to know why investment casting survived throughout these decades and remains a widely used process, contact our staff at Ferralloy Inc. We can walk you through its history and help you realize why it’s an important metal-forming process.