Metal Casting using 3D PRINTING

A common technique in jewelry making and manufacturing is lost-wax casting or investment casting. A model or “pattern” is made in wax, then a plaster mold is made around the wax model. When the mold is fired in a kiln, the wax is burnt out or “lost”; then metal parts can be cast in the mold.This same technique can be used with PLA filament. Jeshua Lacock of Boise, Idaho, used the lost-PLA technique and a homemade furnace to cast aluminum parts for his home-built CO2 cutting laser, going from design to print to metal part in just one day. He thoroughly documented the process at Backyard furnaces fueled by charcoal or propane can get hot enough to melt aluminum (1,220°F) and bronze (1,742°F). Engineers at Coreprint Patterns in Hamilton, Ontario, even used the lost-PLA method to cast stainless steel (2,750°F), taking their mold to a local foundry that could attain the higher temperatures needed



Rini Kanik