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Metal Patterns for Sand Castings in China

In the quotations of iron castings, you may find the suppliers proposed to use metal patterns for production, so you may be confused about what the metal patterns meant, and why they were so costly. Of course, you may wonder if the metal patterns were necessary for your products. Herein, I make a brief introduction for metal patterns based on my working experience in Dandong Foundry of China.

Firstly, let us learn about the types of metal patterns.

1. Used for green sand castings by automatic molding line

Automatic molding line uses the high pressure molding machines, and have very high production rate, so it needs to use the iron patterns. The patterns made by other materials have short life time, and normally can not withstand the high pressure during molding process.

Iron patterns are made by CNC centers or digital milling machines, so they are very costly. Normally one set of iron patterns need about 1500 to 3800 USD according to the different sizes and complexity.

2. Used for green sand castings by manual floor molding

Manual floor molding can use resin patterns and aluminum patterns in China. As for the iron castings with complex structures or large annual demand, the aluminum patterns will be necessary. Aluminum patterns are cheaper than iron patterns. One set of aluminum patterns is normally 1000 to 2000 USD. However, if the iron castings have high requirements to the inside surfaces, which means the sand cores need to be made by iron patterns, then the total pattern costs will be higher than this price range.

3. Used for resin sand castings

As for the comparatively simple resin sand castings, the resin patterns will be suitable and cheaper, but for the complex iron castings, then the aluminum patterns will be necessary. Since usually the resin sand castings are larger, so the patterns will be more expensive than small castings. One set of aluminum patterns for resin sand castings are about 1500 to 3500 USD. Not cheap. So, unless the structures of iron castings are too complex or annual demand is high, otherwise, the clients are not willing to pay for aluminum patterns.

4. Used for shell molding

Shell molding process need to heat iron patterns to melt the pre-coated resin sands, therefore, the iron patterns are necessary for this process. If you just need to use this process to produce the resin sand cores, then one set of pattern will be about 500 to 1000 USD, however, if you need to use it to produce the casting shells, then it will be more costly, and it is about 1500 to 2000 USD.

Of course, all of the above cost ranges are just based on the normal shapes and structures of iron castings. As for the complex or large castings, the costs of metal patterns will be higher.

By the way, the metal patterns are also widely used for permanent molding process, die casting, lost foam casting process and lost wax investment casting process. For these casting processes, the metal patterns are essential.

Aluminum Pattern for Resin Sand Casting Process

Iron Pattern for Automatic Molding Line

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