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What Is Lost Wax Casting
2016-03-13

Lost wax casting, also known as investment casting, is one of the oldest forms of creating precision parts in metal. The process involves creating a wax pattern which is essentially a replica of the desired part in steel. The pattern is covered by a ceramic material and ten removed through the introduction of heat. The next step is to pour the molten steel into the mold. And then once the mold is broken away from the solid steel, the casting is available for use.

The history of the lost wax casting can be traced back to thousands of years ago. Originally, bees wax was formed into the desired shape and then covered in clay. Metal was melted by using bellows and coal fire. And this process was used to form shapes like idols, jewelries, and art works. As time went by, advancements were made in the precision of the materials and processes to the point where extremely predictable results could be achieved. Besides, dentists perhaps the first users of the lost wax casting on a more industrial level, utilizing the process to create fillings to be used inside the mouths of patients.

Advancements in the pattern making, wax, refractories, and melting equipment have result in processes that can hold extremely tight dimensional properties. Modern lost wax castings generally hold dimensions that are measured by a few thousands of an inch per inch, which allows completed components can be used directly from the manufacturer without subsequent machining. In addition, this casting process can also be poured in thousands of different materials, such as steel, non-ferrous materials, duplex alloys, aluminum, iron, etc. to create more parts.

Applications of lost wax casting have grown tremendously during modern times. It is now widely used in creating components in aerospace, transportation, material handling, pump and valve, food processing, etc. Originally, sculptures and art works were also employ lost wax casting to create a metal version of an artist creation. What is more, it is used to create medical implements and components which used inside the human body as well.

The history of lost wax casting will continually be refined through the advancement of materials employed in the process. Each passing year has shown that raw materials can be combined in such a manner that results in improvements of process and cost. And it is believe that this process will constantly be developed in the future.