Zinc Die Casting
High pressure die casting zinc-based alloys is what A.M.E specialise in
Die casting is one of the most efficient manufacturing processes that can produce strong geometrically complex metal components with steel die casting tools that are also known as moulds.
There are several processes by which metals are processed into different forms. Die casting is one of the popular manufacturing processes. It is preferred above all other kinds of processes due to the quality of the finished goods and the ease of manufacture.
Zinc is a widely used and easily available metal which has several different variations to choose from to suit the individual specification.
Below are the specifications of the alloys we use:
Zinc Alloy Equivalents
This classifies international equivalents for Zinc die casting alloys.
|ZL2 (BS EN1774)||ZP2 (EN12844)||ZAMAK2 (ASTM B86)||-|
|ZL3 (BS EN1774)||ZP3 (EN12844)||ZAMAK3 (ASTM B86)||ZDC2 (JIS5301)|
|ZL5 (BS EN1774)||ZP5 (EN12844)||ZAMAC5 (ASTM B86)||ZDC1 (JIS5301)|
|ZL8 (BS EN1774)||ZP8 (EN12844)||ZA8 (ASTM B86)||-|
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The process is carried out on our fully automated die casting cells which are suitable to withstand high pressure. The molten metal is pushed by a hydraulically actuated plunger into a two-piece die casting tool (also known as a tool or mould) containing one or multiple impression cavities, each an exact inverse replica of the part or parts being produced.
Because of the fast chill and rapid solidification that takes place when the molten metal comes into contact with the die casting tool the cooling time can be anything from seconds to a minute dependant on the size and weight of the component.
When the component is cooled the machine will only then open the tool and the fully automated arm will reach in and take the component out of the die, lubricate the die casting tool and weigh the component to ensure it is correct. Once the cycle is complete the machine will automatically repeat this process until the desired quantity is reached.
Zinc alloy is melted and injected into a zinc pressure diecasting tool. The material solidifies and produces the shape and form in the diecasting tool within seconds.
The tool opens and ejects the diecasting shot. This process can be repeated 100s of times per hour reliably and repeatably.
A die casting tool can produce up to 1,000,000 shots from the life of one tool with good maintenance and replacing any wear parts on the tool throughout its life.
A die casting tool can have multiple impressions and each extra impression is a fraction of the cost of a secondary casting tool and so on.
- The mechanical properties of high pressure die castings are generally superior to castings produced by other methods.
- Economical – A die casting tool can run up to hundreds of thousands to millions of shots before it needs to be replaced. Perfect for high volume productions.
- High-pressure zinc die casting has lower costs compared to other processes available.
- Zinc can cast in thin wall sections, therefore, making it lighter in weight.
- One of the most important advantages of Zinc is its accuracy, in fact, zinc alloys allow closer tolerances than any other metal or moulded plastic.
- Zinc has good electrical and thermal conductivity properties.
- Zinc is more cost-effective for the raw material than its rivals.
- Low melting point, which means it requires less energy for production.
- Strong stability, which makes for a long-lasting product with high-quality finishing properties.
There are many benefits of using Zinc alloy over others.
- Thinner wall sections can be achieved compared to other metals due to high casting fluidity.
- High production rates can be achieved.
- The number of secondary machining operations is very little or none at all.
- The surfaces of the finished products can be made smooth or patterned to suit.
- It is possible to cast low fluidity metals.
- Very high dimensional accuracy can be obtained.
- The die casting components can achieve high tensile strengths.
Zinc alloys are strong, and stable with high dimensional accuracy and thermal conductivity, resisting to corrosion, and are recyclable.
Zinc Die Casting is an alloy metal casting process that is characterized by forcing molten zinc alloy metal under high pressure into a die casting tool. The die casting tool is created using two hardened tool steel dies which have been machined into shape and work similarly to an injection mould during the process.
The fully automated zinc pressure die casting cell brings all of the key elements together as follows, a bath of molten metal. Patterns to hold both halves of the tool which open and close and eject the casting shot. The machine head fires a measured shot of zinc alloy with a plunger through to the die casting tool.
The process is very reliable and can hold tolerances of 2 thou within the process of shrinkage with ease. Zinc Die Casting shrinkage takes up to 6 weeks.
Within our quality systems, we have traceability of materials and when castings are produced as a bare minimum requirement for our customers.
Before we produce a tool all of the design is taken into consideration including shrinkage.
By simple math, we can build shrinkage into the design of the die casting tool making this complex part of manufacturing very easy and most reliable.
Die casting was designed to produce intricate shapes and forms reliably and repeatably at a fraction of the cost to make 10s of 1000s of casting. This is a fraction of the cost of making a metal component from a solid piece of metal. The process can be repeated 100s of times per hour.
The die casting process can produce the most intricate and complex shapes and forms to the highest of tight tolerances and hold these characteristics within the zinc pressure die casting process with ease.
Zinc alloy die castings are used in the following industries. Aerospace, automotive, marine industry, Medical, Electronic & Electrical, building, Hardware, small geared motors. and more.
Zinc pressure die castings are perfect for finishing castings to a high decorative finish. Chrome plating, powder coating, inlay painting, enamel paint on top of chrome, zinc plating, Brushed finish to name a few.
A small simple 1 impression die casting tool can cost as little as £1500.00 and will have a tool life up to 1000 000 shots. A small simple sub die can hold up to 10 impressions.
Adding more impressions into the tool is a fraction of the cost of a secondary tool. More impressions do not mean a slower die casting time and optimises multi impression tool costs for castings. reducing die casting costs.
All of the key elements are brought together by way of a fully automated die casting cell.
A die casting tool is set on the die casting machine which simplifies the die casting process allowing the following to happen in a few seconds.
- Molten metal is injected into a die casting tools impressions and the material solidifies.
- The die casting machine opens the moving tool. Only the moving half tool moves.
- Once the tool is fully opened the full casting shot is ejected from the moving half die casting tool.
- The machine does a weight check confirming the die casting shot in full has been ejected and it is safe for the tool to reclose and fire the next shot.
This cycle can be repeated every few seconds, running 100s of shots per hour for small parts that have multi impression die casting impressions of 1 to 20 or more impressions.
The more impressions the tool has the more cost effective the castings become as multi impression tools will still run at almost the same speed as a single impression tool.
If we produce a 2x impression tool this will then reduce the cost of the die casting process by 50% or if we produce a 3x impression tool this will divide the running costs of the die casting process by 33 1/3% and so on.
By adding an extra impression to a tool on a simple component the extra investment can be recouped within making a few 1000 castings and giving long term saving for the future.
Zinc alloys lend themselves perfectly to the die casting process. Zinc material shrinks after the casting process at a rate of 6 thou to the inch where we can hold tolerances of 2, thou reliably with ease and removes the need and costs of expensive secondary operations such as drilling and reaming etc.
Thus, making the zinc pressure die casting process one of the most reliable processes for reproducing a very tight tolerance component with excellent accuracy reliably and repeatably throughout the tool life of each production run.
Zinc alloy die castings are perfect for finishing with many processes. can be named.
Porosity is caused where the air is not removed from the die casting tool and leaves little bubbles of air in the castings. Porosity is greatly reduced with die design and how the tool is fed with zinc alloy and by the speed of impression fill time.
The process is backed up by venting the die casting impressions.
The die casting tool is vented at the final impression fill point which exhausts any air in the impression giving a porosity free casting to the optimum and fills with each die casting impression.
Greatly reducing the chance of porosity.
Zinc pressure die casting is a fully automated process producing castings of intricate shape and form for the most complex of components produced to the tightest tolerances which can be done with great accuracy reliably and repeatably throughout the life teach production run and throughout the like of a zinc pressure die casting tool.
Zinc pressure die casting is one of the most cost-effective processes for reproducing a complex component to the tightest of tolerances and way exceeding the cost of producing a component from a block of metal individually.