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Flexible Automation and Intelligent Manufacturing,  1997:<br>Proceedings of the Seventh International FAIM Conference

ISBN:
978-1-56700-089-4 (Print)
978-1-56700-442-7 (Online)

SPIN CASTING OF METAL PARTS DIRECTLY FROM RP MASTERS

P.M. Hackney
Center for Rapid Product Development School of Engineering University of Northumbria at Newcastle

M. Sarwar
Center for Rapid Product Development School of Engineering University of Northumbria at Newcastle

S. Widdows
RapidCast (UK) Ltd Consett Co Durham

Abstract

Industry has now become familiar with the ideas of Rapid Prototyping (RP) and emerging Rapid Manufacturing technologies and is using them to reduce product development risks and life cycles (1). A great emphasis has been placed on the production of realistic plastic parts using techniques such as vacuum casting of polyurethane components which have similar properties to injection moulded parts.

Until recently the production of metal parts has concentrated on using traditional techniques, such as sand and investment casting. These techniques are now being replaced by using RP models to produce wooden/metal/wax masters.

The process of spin casting is capable of reproducing the fine detail provided by most RP systems. It offers a high degree of accuracy and repeatability and also minimises post casting operations.

The development of new silicone rubbers which bond at lower operating temperatures allow most RP components to be used as masters to create a mould in which materials such as zinc can be formed.

This paper describes the process of spin casting and how accurate parts can be produced.