Die Casting Parts: Selecting the Best Metal
Die casting is an excellent metal forming process, one of the most efficient and accurate manufacturing services in the industry. However, there are many different things to consider when choosing die cast parts. One of the most vital elements is the metal they are cast from.
Choosing the right metal
All metals and alloys have unique physical properties that affect how well they can be die cast–and which type of die casting they can undergo. Certain metals are better for hot-chamber die casting, while others are only suitable for cold-chamber die casting. Plus, there are many other characteristics to consider as well:
- Tensile strength
- Impact strength
- Yield strength
- Elongation properties
- Surface hardness
- Electrical conductivity
- Response to high pressure or high temperature
And these are just a few of the things to keep in mind. You’ll also want to keep in mind the application your part will serve and what the best metal for that will be.
Common metals for die casting
There are several metals that are suitable for the die casting process, mainly non-ferrous metals that don’t contain a significant amount of iron. The most common metals though are alloys of aluminum, magnesium, and zinc. Each of these metals, and each of their alloys, have particular advantages and are best for specific applications.
Aluminum is one of the most common metals used in die casting. Aluminum alloys are die cast in cold chambers, and are commonly mixed with silicon, copper, or magnesium to improve their strength. Aluminum die-cast components are lightweight and have good dimensional stability, making them perfect for complex and fine-featured parts. They also tend to have good corrosion and temperature resistance, and can be made with good thermal and electrical conductivity.
Magnesium alloys are even lighter than aluminum and the parts are highly machinable after die casting. As a result, they are great for parts that will require additional machining and surface finishing after casting. Magnesium alloys are suitable for hot-chamber die casting, which makes them more efficient to cast, and they are often mixed with aluminum, zinc, manganese, and silicon. Parts cast from these alloys are excellent for parts that require corrosion resistance, ductility, and vibration dampening.
Zinc is also suitable for hot-chamber die casting, and is one of the most manufacturer-friendly metals when it comes to die casting as well! Zinc alloys are heavier than aluminum and magnesium, and are usually alloyed with aluminum, copper, and magnesium. They have great benefits like good impact strength and ductility, and are suitable for subsequent plating. Zinc also has the least effect on the dies themselves, resulting in minimal die wear and making these alloys far more cost efficient.
Looking for a supplier of die casting services?
Cast-Rite Corporation has over seventy years of experience in quality zinc and aluminum die casting and related manufacturing services. We’ll work with you to find the best solution for your project’s needs and ensure that our services meet or exceed your expectations. For more information, check out our website today!