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What is Gravity Casting

Number of visits: Date:2012-3-14

Gravity casting is also known as vacuum casting. It is a technique in which large diameter filaments are used with adequate separation. This ensures that no clusters are formed and also good metal wetting of the fiber is guaranteed. This technique was first used in 1970. The gravity casting method has advantages like cost effective, good quality, and process control over other casting techniques.

Metal Casting is more than just an excuse to play with molten metal it is actually a great way to create art and complicated pieces of machinery or other items that would otherwise be nearly impossible to make. Metal Casting is really a great way to save money...while playing with molten metal.

The reason that Metal Casting has survived the test of time is a matter or efficiency. Some of the earliest casting examples have been found in China dating back thousands and thousands of years. In fact every major civilization from the Egyptians to the Romans practiced metal casting. This skill came back into vogue during the Renaissance and has continued to advance and evolve from there. While Sand Casting is the most popular casting process there are many, many more processes available to the backyard foundries.

Not everyone is going to be casting heavy pieces like engine parts or cast their own motorcycles. So for those that just want to make decorative pieces you will not be using the same casting process as these heavy duty casters.  For artists creating small scale statues or embellishes and for hobbyists that need a decorative touch to their model plane or boat might want to consider using gravity casting for their needs.

Gravity casting seems to be especially useful when dealing with aluminum and other light alloys. The basic idea behind this casting process is pretty much exactly what the name suggests. The metal is introduced into the mold by the force of gravity. Most other casting process either use natural pressure difference like the kind in certain sand casting procedures or they use forced pressure like in centrifugal casting to get the molten metal into the mold. 

One of the most common uses for gravity casting is when permanent molds are going to be used. Also called a die, the permanent mold is really only economical for those planning on using the same mold numerous times and will need to keep the quality at a constant level. While some temporary molds can be repeatedly used the quality of the finished product will begin to suffer over time. With die molds the quality will remain the same. Die molds should be seen as an investment. Yes, they will be more costly then other molds; however they will outlast cheaper options for molds. With Permanent molds, they are created using cast iron, steel, and other metals.

Gravity casting is used for the permanent mold process with pleasing results. Gravity casting is usually used when the finished product is more visually based then structurally based which is why this method is a favorite of artists and even some jewelers. The loss of strength is due to the lack of pressure used in this process. For those that need the strength but still want to use gravity casting, more of the molten metal will need to be used which will increase the weight.

Relying on gravity will take patience, although it will be needed for larger products.

If you have never tried gravity casting then you should, because you just may be surprised by what such a simple thing like gravity can create. For the sake of humor, make an apple and see what happens.

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