Die casting is a metal casting process that many industries use to force molten metal into a mold cavity under high pressure. Although die castings can be made from a wide array of non-ferrous metals, such as zinc, copper, aluminum, lead, magnesium, etc., the tool dies of the cavity mold are mostly made from hardened steel which work very similarly to that of an injection mold during the process.
Zinc die casting is perhaps the easiest casting method compared with other die casting materials. Zinc die casting has a higher melting point, which approximates to about 380 to 309 degrees Celsius. Zinc alloys have high impact strength, high ductility, and are economical for small parts and easily plated. Also, they are said to promote longer die life.
Choosing the right metal for your die casting is not simply a matter of preference; it is less straightforward than you think. So in this article, we’ll talk to you a little bit about what zinc die casting entails and whether it should be chosen over other materials of die casting.
Zinc die casting is typically performed using a hot chamber machine in order to carry out the hot chamber die casting process. During the hot chamber die casting process with zinc alloys, they are held within the high pressure die casting machine itself, then pulled into the chamber and forced into the mold by the injection piston. As the piston pumps, it forces metal along the nozzle and into the die.
Other than zinc, hot chamber die casting is often utilized alongside high-melting point metals like lead and tin based alloys, which also makes metals with low-melting point like aluminum one of the most undesirable choices. The key advantage of this system lies in the fast cycle times which generates about 15 cycles per minute, as well as the convenience of metaling the zinc alloys in the casting machines.
There are quite a few reasons why you should choose zinc alloys over magnesium alloys over your die casting. The first and foremost reason is the superior durability. Although magnesium alloys are sometimes preferred in die casting when the weight of material is a major concern in the final product, zinc alloys are typically much more rigid than magnesium and substantially more resistant to corrosion.
Moreover, zinc alloys are often the more desirable choice for die casting because they are easier to form. Zinc alloys have all the attributes that make them relatively easier to form, such as what we’ve already mentioned, the rigid and strong qualities. When accuracy is also a primary consideration for your die casting, zinc alloys will be well worth it while taking the price into account.
Lastly, when more complex designs and finishes are required, zinc alloys are without a doubt the better choice for your die casting. This largely applies to tech and automotive industries wherein parts are often designed to be more sophisticated. Zinc alloys are the best choice when it comes to versatile finishing options and aesthetics.
You’ll find that aluminum alloys are often one of the less desirable metal choices for your die casting. But let’s talk about why zincs are better instead. The primary advantage is superior accuracy. Although aluminum is lighter than zinc, it is not nearly as precision as zinc. Also, aluminum often requires additional machining after the die casting process is complete. Not only is zinc easier to machine, it is also relatively easier to form compared with aluminum die casting process.
Furthermore, zinc prevails in terms of durability and rigidity. Therefore, die cast zinc tools often have longer lifespan compared with those made of aluminum die casts. As a matter of fact, it is said that zinc die casts are able to last five times as long as aluminum die cast.
Last but not least, if affordability is one of your primary considerations, you should definitely not look away from zinc die casting. To be fair, zinc materials are typically more expensive than aluminum because they are high quality materials, but with specific respect to die casting price, zinc’s price is generally lower.
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