High Pressure Die Casting Advantages & Disadvantages

The high pressure die casting process is a fast, precise method of creating components made from aluminium or zinc. It’s favoured, in particular, by advanced industries which have very specific requirements over appearance, dimensional tolerances and lightweight components.  

How does high pressure die casting work?

High pressure die casting provides the shortest route from molten metal to completed component, by injecting the molten metal into a hardened steel mould and allowing it to solidify under pressure before ejection.

What are the advantages of high pressure die casting?

If you require large volumes of complex components, high pressure die casting will deliver what you need with speed and precision.

The casting cycles for high pressure die casting are extremely short when compared to other methods, as the molten metal solidifies in mere seconds. This assists the process in being extremely cost-effective when it comes to mass production.

High pressure die casting also lends itself well to components that are thin walled. Wall thicknesses produced by high pressure die casting can be as low as 1mm (depending on the size of the component), making it far more effective than other processes when it comes to creating a precise casting that is also extremely lightweight.

In addition, high pressure die casting creates a very smooth surface. So, if you need to apply a further finish, you’ll have a great primer for coatings to be applied directly in the next phase.

What are the disadvantages of high pressure die casting?

The main disadvantage of high pressure die casting is its porosity – but an evacuated chamber and other techniques may reduce this.

Due to the presence of these pores (containing entrapped gases), components created through high pressure die casting can’t usually be fully heat treated. This would, unfortunately, lead to the formation of surface blisters.

High pressure die casting is also known to have high start-up costs, but this isn’t strictly a disadvantage, depending on your perspective. The initial tooling cost may be higher than other methods, but the long casting run that this process enables can also facilitate a low unit cost alongside the aforementioned high-volume production.

Why choose MRT Castings?

If you think that high pressure die casting is the right process to suit your final application, you’ll need to find a reliable partner to produce those components. But why should you choose us?

Firstly, it’s important to know that the surface area and weight of a die cast can be limited by the locking force of the machine used. We mitigate this restriction by using high pressure die casting machines with locking forces of between 220 and 530 tonnes.

Better yet, all of our machines feature computerised real-time shot control, automatic ladling, die-spray, automatic casting extraction and cooling - providing repeatability and productivity.

In addition, other foundries may only offer their services for high volume orders, claiming that lengthy set-ups make the process prohibitive to small runs.

Not us.

Our tooling preparation and set-up operations are optimised to make the process more accessible to customers who only require small quantities, meaning you needn’t miss out on the excellent benefits of high pressure die casting just because you don’t need a large order.

If you need help to choose a casting process, or you’d like to discuss the next steps, contact our team today.

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