Reducing the Cost of Creating Investment Casts for Product Testing by 82%

Designing a pump that performs well is just half the challenge. Testing the pump using traditional methods is the other half; it’s both costly and weighted down by long lead times. In 2012, Tech Cast, a leading supplier of high-quality investment castings, conducted a side-by-side comparison between using casting wax forms created with metal tools (the traditional method) and using forms created using 3D Systems’ QuickCast patterns.

The QuickCast patterns are highly accurate, resin-based, 3D printed direct patterns that can be accurately created in a day or so at low cost. Uniquely, the QuickCast material can be used to create precise casts, yet as the material is burned out, it has an almost ash-less burn. This method also allows manufacturers to make  new patterns quickly should the design suddenly change.

Traditionally, designs are sent away for metal tooling, taking 7-9 weeks at a cost of about $40,000. Once returned, the tool is used to create wax patterns from which the casting can be made. Once castings are made, the parts can be cast and then tested. If a design needed to be changed then new tools would be required, or alternatively a new casting pattern would need to be created in a couple of days for almost immediate casting and testing.

During testing, Tech Cast found that costs of this process were dramatically reduced, while testing times fell significantly using QuickCast.

Read the complete story by Tech Cast.