Sand casting is a form of gravity casting where sand is used as the mold material. A sand casting is a relatively inexpensive casting process and can be used for producing either large or small parts.
How Sand Castings Are Made
The first step in the sand casting process is to create the mold itself. The sand mold is formed by packing sand into the mold. When the mold is removed, what remains is the cavity that will form the casting.
After the mold has been made, it is prepped for the molten metal to be poured. The surface of the cavity is lubricated to help in the removal of the casting. The mold halves are closed and securely clamped together.
Once the mold is securely clamped, the molten metal can be poured. The pouring can either be done manually by using a ladle or by a machine. Enough metal must be poured to fill the entire cavity.
As soon as the molten metal is poured into the mold it will begin to cool and harden almost immediately. One the entire cavity has been filled and hardened, the final casting is formed. Once that happens, the sand mold can be broken and the casting can be removed. The process, called shakeout, is usually performed by a vibrating machine that shakes the sand and casting out.
The final step is trimming. During the cooling process, the material will solidify and attach to the part. The excess material must be trimmed.
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