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View Full Version : Aluminum Casting Kiln



Dr. Rob
03-20-2005, 06:28 AM
I was just watching a TV show a minute ago where they made some really neat aluminum castings. They made an item of polystyrene foam, packed it in sand, and poured molten aluminum into the sand. Polystyrene melts and is replaced by aluminum. Sweet! (is that the lost-wax technique?)

So I wanna do this. Right now.

How hard is it to make a kiln? Out of what? Can be gas (city gas / lamp gas / whatever comes out of the wall) or electrically powered. Where do I get sand? Will any ol' alu scrap do, or are some alloys NG?

thistle
03-20-2005, 10:51 AM
Quite easy ,i made a gas forge that would easily melt aluminium and brass .

i used refractory brick for a pottery kiln
-went to a potter and asked if he had any bricks-they had just relined the kilns so he gave me the brickas as they were surplus.

it would be better if you used castable refractory to make a round furnace.

(I have a small round furnace and am going to have to reline it one of these days.)


For a burner i got an adjustable propane regulator from the bbq section of the hardware store( for one of the burners they use to deep fry turkeys,)
the burner was made from 1 inch pipe - got design from -

http://www.backyardmetalcasting.com/

dont fart around with home made crucibles
buy some proper crucibles.

http://budgetcastingsupply.com/

tongs and tooling youcan weld up

sand cant advise on - no usable sand for

1000 miles of me.

spend lots of money on safety clothing as if you screw up and are not protected its off to the hospital or worse.


metal its best to use the same scrap stuff you can get used to the properties as well.

jstinem
03-20-2005, 10:58 AM
Do a search on "Metal Casting". There are several sites with good info. Also look www.lindsaybks.com. (http://www.lindsaybks.com.) They sell some good and inexpensive how-to books fo home foundry work.
Try a search for "lost foam" to learn more about this type of casting. It's easy to do and it works well.
Joe

RPease
03-20-2005, 11:11 AM
[QUOTE] Polystyrene melts and is replaced by aluminum. Sweet! (is that the lost-wax technique?)

QUOTE]

I believe it would be closer to the "lost polystyrene" technique...... http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//wink.gif

Actually, the lost wax method of casting would create a wax model of what you want to make. Then coat the wax model with some sort of molding material (materials vary) that can withstand the required heat. The mold is heated (sometimes to cure the mold material) until the wax is vaporized out (now it is "lost"...right?) and finally the material for casting (usually some sort of metal, but not necessarily) is poured, injected, introduced (you decide....) into the mold and then cooled to solid. Afterwards, the mold is broken to release the cast object.

That's a "nutshell" overview.....Thistle pretty much answered the other questions.....

Do a GOOGLE search on "lost wax casting" if your interested in more detail........or maybe your computer isn't working????? http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

Regards.........

wierdscience
03-20-2005, 11:49 AM
Checkout this page,look for"lost foam casting"

http://www.ray-vin.com/casting/

torker
03-20-2005, 12:11 PM
DR...I've been interested in this stuff for some time also. Up here the is a fellow from Alberta who travels around out here in BC, collecting all the broken/ruined aluminum wheels from the tire shops. He does some kind of casting with them. Not sure what he does. I told him i was really interested in doing this also...hmmmm... he clammed right up and wouldn't tell me anything else. I guess he didn't want anyone horning in on his private stock of broken wheels. On a good day he loads a 1 ton flat deck with stock racks right to the top, from what I gathered he got most of it for free. Sure would be cool if you went right ahead with this project, keep us posted! (Please build two of each...I need a setup like this too http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif )
Russ

ibewgypsie
03-20-2005, 01:32 PM
They are paying up to $7 per aluminum wheel here for scrap. My price on them went up.

David

Mcgyver
03-20-2005, 04:11 PM
check out
http://www.buildyouridea.com/index.html

good stuff on lost foam + a cnc hotwire set up.